April 17, 2016

The Flavigny Swizzle

Mixology Monday turns 10 this month, so I wanted my contribution to be special.

Our host Fred of The Cocktail Virgin Blog  - and the guy who is keeping MxMo alive - set us the task of making a swizzle.

Or as he puts it in his announcement post:

..most cold Swizzles are built in the glass, topped with crushed ice, and agitated with a rapidly spinning natural swizzle stick (or facsimile) to mix and chill.

On April 24th 2006 the theme of the very first MxMo was Pastis, so I figured I would incorporate the taste of anis into my swizzle. 

I looked at the gorgeous Ojen Frappe of New Orleans and considered a few other possibilities but my mind kept returning to some of my favorite candies: Little rounded hard candies with a mild taste of violets and a center of anis made in the french city of Flavigny. 

Actually the pastilles Les Anis de Flavigny are some of the oldest commercially made candy in the world.

My next challenge was finding the right anis flavored spirit to go with the taste of violets. I chose the Italian Sambuca and once I had looked to Italy figured a hint of lemon would marry the harshness of the Sambuca and the softness of Creme de Violette.

Time to start swizzling - I still have my homemade swizzle stick from MxMo XC
  • 4,5 cl Sambuca - I used a cheap bottle from the local supermarket
  • 1,5 cl Limoncello 
  • 3 cl Creme de Violette - I used Bitter Truth  
Fill the bottom of a spacious glass with crushed ice and add the Sambuca and Limoncello and a bit more ice. Twirling the swizzle stick between your palms start mixing and cooling. Then fill the glass with ice and swizzle some more to jeg the liquid up in the glass. Finally pour the Creme de Violette over the top and let it paint the ice and seep into the glass. Garnish with fresh violets.

April 1, 2016

New Nordic Cherry Herring Cocktail - AKA the April Fool

My home country is famous for Danish Design, New Nordic Cooking and in cocktail circles for a certain cherry liqueur.

What is perhaps not as well known is the fact, that the name of that liqueur is just a translation error. In fact I may be the only one who knows this, as I just found an old, original document about this today April 1st.

The original name in Danish was closer to kirsebærsild, which translate to cherry herring.

I'm all about finding the roots of cocktails, in fact I fancy myself the equivalent of David Wondrich, Philip Greene, Ted Haigh, Jerred Brown and Jeff Berry rolled into one and divided by four - and then female of course!

When I don't see my self as an penguin - but even in that incarnation I would love this New Nordic Cherry Herring Cocktail.

So let's get mixing:
  • 1 piece of pickled herring - about one square centimeter - and another one for garnish
  • 6 cl snaps - aquavit to non-Danes - I used Brøndums which has just a mild caraway taste
  • 3 cl cherry liqueur - I used the one at the back of my bar cabinet - and a little to the right
  • 10 cl organic buttermilk - I used one that was close to the sell by date for the more authentic sour note
  • 1 slice of Danish rye bread toasted for garnish and a snack
Start by muddling one of the pieces of herring in the bottom of a shaker with the cherry liqueur. Then add the snaps and buttermilk and ice.

Shake hard for a good 30 minutes you want the buttermilk to froth.

Strain into designer low ball glass and garnish with a triangle of herring on a triangle of rye bread on a cocktail pick. Think one tiny little round of Danish smørrebrød.

You may have to double strain - unless you like bits of muddled herring in you cocktail.