Friday, October 21, 2011

Ginger Ale vs Ginger Beer

So, when is it one and not the other? I will research and get back to you.  My first attempt at making ginger ale (with A.B.'s recipe) was so-so.  I suspect I did shook too gently during the "shake gently" step of the preperation. 

In other news, tonight I experienced the music of Tim Brady.  I suggest you do the same.

Stay tuned!

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Maple Egg Cream

So, I "discovered" the Egg Cream.  How did I not know if this before? I don't know.  Anyway, far be it from me to educate you on the this historic drink.  Read this.   Ok, you've read it?  You've returned from Imbibe? Excellent.  The recipe in the July/August issue is a good one and also very adaptable.  Having no chocolate syrup on hand I took Peter Freeman's suggestion and made a maple egg cream.  Yum!  Delicious and expensive, excellent!  (Or is it expensive? Hmmm...)  Anyway, I tried it again with other syrups.  My Orgeat egg cream was ok.  A cinnamon one was better.  Then I decided to try something with cinnamon and fresh mint (more on that later).  So what's this magic recipe? 

Maple Egg Cream
3oz milk
7oz soda
2oz maple syrup

build, stir, enjoy.


Just like DJ Hawaiian Shirt's Alexander Ratio this allows for much experimenting (as already discussed above).  How 'bout Tiki-ing things up a bit?  Coconut milk, ginger beer, and falernum anyone?  I'll just keep that in the back of my mind until my Falernum awakes from the freezer (in zombie-like fashion).

Oh,  the horror puns!


Friday, September 30, 2011

Saturday, August 20, 2011

One For The Road

Supposedly the title phrase was about giving a drink to a prisoner on his way to the gallows.  I'm sure I read that somewhere but couldn't find it in my reference books.  Let's just say I'm correct. 

Alright, one last alcohol post before we move on to soft drinks. (Aha!)  I foolishly thought a mixture of 151 rum and syrup would freeze. It doesn't, well not really.  Anyway let me tell you what I was going to do and then we'll move on to what I did do. I was going to call my falernum "metric falernum" and then invent a drink called Gimme Sympathy or something like that.  I changed my mind. 

The usual format for a falernum blog post is to explain what it is, possibly including a personal anecdote about tiki something-or-other; provide the recipe for falernum; include a picture of one or more of the steps; include a cocktail recipe showcasing falernum; then either invite challenge readers to make their own or claim you will give some away.  I'm not going to do that, entirely. 

Originally I was thinking of "metric falernum" as in metric ton, but the conversions got a little wacky.  So I thought about multiples of ten, and I sort of stuck with it. I ultimately decided against "metric falernum" because, really, the recipe (which sadly isn't on the new site) for Dr. A Elmegirab's is metric in the final analysis.  That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Frozen Falernum
150mL Brugal 151
10 limes
100g  ginger
50 cloves
25g almonds
400mL 2:1 simple syrup

Zest limes, julienne ginger, toast almonds, macerate 24 hours in rum; Squeeze and strain through your fingers, combine with syrup; Make one or two cocktails; Put remainder in the freezer for who knows when. (Makes aprox. 500mL)

So, having not experienced falernum before I'm unsure if I did this right, but I like it.  It's currently in the freezer waiting, just waiting...

I did make a Rum Swizzle (as I had only silver rum on hand) and a slight variation on a Wicked Wahine.


ps I made some Lazy Pimento Dram too.  You don't want that recipe too do you?

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Hold The Onion

Like other bloggers before me I must limit stop alcohol consumption for medical reasons.  The timeline is yet to be determined.  This may cause a kink in my blog plans.  The plans being: my Falernum Recipe (including irreverent puns); the final Federal Glass Shaker recipes; a "dynamite" recipe comparison; and some other stuff (Tiny cocktails?).  Perhaps I'll rely on the taste buds of my friends... 

Stay Tuned!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

2:1 And A Good Idea

So, I thought I was so smart and had made a Martini as part of my Federal Glass Shaker project. Then I went to take a photo of the recipe. Oops!  I left out the lemon twist!  I did discover soemthing though, I enjoy a 2:1 Martini.  I was never a fan of the olive garnish but I quite like it with this much vermouth.  Conversely I'm not a fan of a 2:1 Gibson.  I doubt the lemon twist is going to change my opinion about either of these drinks, but...

So, I need to regroup, get some olives, make these drinks and report back.  In the meantime I can reiterate: 2:1 with olive = good. 2:1 with onion = meh.  More in depth information to follow in the weeks months to come.

I guess I'll just stick to my 24:1 Gibsons for now...

Thursday, July 21, 2011

3:1 And A Bad Idea

The Canada Cocktail gave us 3:1 liquor to liqueur plus bitters (and sugar).  I think this concept needs further investigation. I will begin experiments drinking and report my findings.  First though, a maligned ingredient. What Dr Bamboo calls a Potable Pariah.

This one time Chris made mention of a Malibu Old Fashioned in the Mixo chat, much to everyone's horror & dismay as I recall. I however was intrigued rather than horrified. So, damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!

Malibu OF
2 oz Malibu
0.25 oz pineapple syrup
dash aromatic bitters
Stir over ice in an old fashioned glass . Garnish with a cherry.

Good God is that sweet!  Too sweet.  WAAAAAY too sweet.

Oh well, live and learn I suppose. The Ouzo OF on the other hand...

Sunday, July 10, 2011

MxMo LIX: Beer Cocktails

This month for Mixology Monday, Fred challenges us to make a beer cocktail.  I considered many things: making my own recipe, modifying an existing champagne cocktail, modifying a highball.  Ultimately I could not resist the lure of the Skip And Go Naked.  Yes, you heard me.  So sue me.  I haven't got a story about it so for that I direct you here.

Skip And Go Naked. 
1.5 oz gin
1 oz lemon juice
1 oz simple syrup

Build over ice in a Collins glass.  Top with lager.


† 10 to 12 oz.  Or whatever you've got.  Hey, I'm not picky.

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Ask And Ye Shall Receive

After a hiatus/stall of nearly a year the Mixoloseum Blog is active once again.  So, what's better than blogging about a drink?  Quoting what someone else said about your drink! By all means though, check everyone else's out too!

Here's what Fred had to say about my (Caribbean)Tax Shelter:

"The (Caribbean) Tax Shelter was crafted by Dagreb and perhaps is a play on the classic Income Tax Cocktail. Swap out the dry vermouth and Angostura Bitters  for rum, lime juice, and floral bitters, and suddenly a recipe created to mask the taste of bathtub gin becomes a delightful tropical refresher.
(Caribbean) Tax Shelter
• 1 1/2 oz Old Tom Gin
• 3/4 oz silver rum
• 3/4 oz sweet vermouth
• 3/4 oz orange juice
• 3/4 oz lime juice
• 3 dash Floral Bitters
Shake with ice and strain."


Friday, July 01, 2011

Happy Canada Day!

While flipping through The Complete Bartender recently, I came across the Canada Cocktail. It seemed fitting for today. This recipe varies from recipes you may find in a search, and although there is no water it certainly is a cocktail. Kind of a fancy cocktail I suppose...

Anyway, on with the show:
Canada Cocktail
Canada Cocktail
1.5 oz Canadian Whisky
0.5 oz triple sec
2 dashes Angostura bitters
1 tsp sugar
Shake with ice, strain in to a chilled cocktail glass
from The Complete Bartender by Robyn M. Feller

Happy Canada Day!


Saturday, June 25, 2011

What Will I Do With All This Ouzo & Pineapple Juice?

The Dolofonos is good.  It is also good with sour cream n onion rings. (Alarmingly this snack, at least the store brand version,  contains silicon dioxide. I know why it's in there but it's still disconcerting to eat glass). No matter how good it is though it will take a tremendous amount of time to use a bottle of Ouzo at a rate of 3 dashes per drink. So what else can I do? Even trading the Dolofonos for the Greek Buck won't really get the ouzo flowing.  Maybe I should just accept that it will gather dust most of the time and occasionally see the light of day, maybe not though...

Green With Envy
1 oz Ouzo
1 oz Blue Curacao
4 oz pineapple juice
shake with ice and pour.

From The Complete Book Of Mixed Drinks. (Not to be confused with The Complete Book of Mixed Drinks by Anthony Dias Blue). Also found verbatim from the former book at Boozee.

Green With Envy

This was an interesting drink but frankly I'd rather have a White Heather to utilise pineapple juice.  It does however also solve the quandary of what to do with that bottle of Blue Curacao and it uses more pineapple juice than most drinks.  Oddly the recipe calls for a 7 oz hurricane glass. I'm not sure such an animal exists around here, most are about twice that size.  I used a nosing glass instead.


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Top Five Things To Do With Bad Scotch

Some people will tell you there's no such thing as bad liquor, but if you don't like one it might as well be bad.  When it comes to artistic endeavours I'm of a different mind,  but I've got some Scotch that I don't care for.  It's been kicking around for a while actually.  A recent tasting revealed that it isn't as bad as I remembered.  Either my palate has changed or bottle aging has improved things.  Maybe a little of both.  More likely the former.  Anyway, if you've got scotch you don't like what should you do with it?

5) Suffer.  Just drink it anyway.  That bottle will be empty, eventually.
4) Let it gather dust.  Put it back in the far reaches of the 2nd tier liquor cabinet.  Who knows, it might improve, or evaporate.
3) Give it away.  Preferably to someone you don't really like that much. I don't think I need to explain this further.
2) Mix it in a cocktail.  I'm sure we've all had so-so drinks made from liquor we enjoy on it's own.  Sometimes the reverse is true, a banal spirit can be elevated with the right partner(s).
1) Make a liqueur! Once made it can be used to make cocktails, cocktails with ingredients you actually like.  Excellent!

So, after making vermouth I still had several fresh herbs courtesy of the seester-in-law.  Still lurking in the liquor cabinet was that bottle of Scotch.  I decided to combine the two and add honey.  You will find a wide variety of proportions and herbs if you search online for "Drambuie recipe" or "homemade Drambuie" or "make your own Drambuie" but the constant things are Scotch, herbs, honey.  Here is my recipe:


12.5 oz Scotch
2 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
1 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
6 oz honey

Steep herbs in Scotch for 24 hours.  Strain.  Mix with honey (warmed slightly).

Herbs In Scotch

I can't say for sure how close this is to tasting like the real thing.  I've no reference bottle in the house.  From what I recall though this is quite close.  Or as my father might say, "As near as makes no nevermind." There will likely be some sediment.  I don't mind this.  If you do, well, use someone else's recipe ;-)

Now, I just need to determine an ideal Rusty Nail ratio...


Saturday, June 18, 2011

MXMO LVIII: Niche Spirits

No, not Nietzche spirits.  Niche. It's Mixology Monday time again!

So, imagine this.  After a visit home to see the family your Greek friend brings you some Metaxa and some Ouzo.  The Metaxa you have occasionally after dinner as if it were brandy.  The Ouzo you don't know what to do with.  So it goes.  And it goes for a while.  Then you inherit some Sambuca.  It begins to gather dust right beside the Ouzo.  And so it goes.  In the meantime several bottles of gin and rum revolve through your liquor cabinet.  The Ouzo and Sambuca continue to gather dust.  Then one day you find yourself with pineapple juice and club soda in danger of going flat.  Whilst perusing a cocktail book you come across the Assassino.  Before you make it though you discover the theme of the current month's MxMo, hosted by Adventures In Cocktails, to be Niche Spirits.

Harrowing Canoe Trip

You get the bright idea to make an Algonquin but with Metaxa substituted for the rye.  You figure the spiciness and wood of Metaxa 7 Star will be a nice stand-in for rye.  You're wrong!  Instead the vermouth and juice somehow cover up everything but the jamminess of the grape spirit.  Not what you had in mind.  It's a shame because you even had a clever name for this new drink.  Algonquin makes you think of the wilderness (because of Algonquin Provincial Park) and outdoorsy activities (not hotels or literary clubs). That same Greek friend of the family once went on a canoe trip with your brother. A canoe trip near Lion's Head.  It turned into a harrowing adventure.  In the end everyone was okay, but it was dicey for a while....

Unfortunately the Harrowing Canoe Trip cocktail is not something you want to have again.  Perhaps with 5 Star it would be better.  Perhaps with less sweet juice it would be better. If you ever dare to have it again you'll find out.  So your mind returns to the Assassino. Would you drink something called a Greek Assassin? Maybe.  There's really only one way to find out.  While It's name doesn't have quite the inscrutable ring to it that you were hoping for a tall drink may be the way to go. There isn't really a (personal) story you can tell about an assasin and- 

Forget about the name, is there going to be an actual drink recipe anytime soon?  Some of us are getting thirsty!

Oh sorry, I got a little sidetracked.  Here it is:

2 oz Metaxa 5 Star
1 oz dry vermouth
1 oz pineapple juice
3 dashes ouzo
club soda†

Shake Metaxa vermouth and juice with ice.  Strain in a Collins glass over ice.  Top with club soda.  Add dashes of ouzo on top of drink. Garnish with a speared cherry.

† While the Assassino calls for only 1oz of soda I found this inadequate for the chosen glassware, even after the displacement caused by ice.  I chose slightly more dilution for a better photo.

Friday, June 17, 2011


Last weeks TDN theme was tall drinks.  So rather than the newfangled Old Fashioned I was about to have I made a tall drink. The club soda was all gone but there was chinotto in the fridge. It occurred to me that Campari and Chinotto share some similarity flavour wise so I started to experiment.  This was the result:

1.5 oz gin
3 drops Pernod

Fill highball glass with ice and chinotto.  Float gin and Pernod.  Garnish with lime (or a lime creature).

Lime Monster

So, it's like a fizzy Negroni with Pernod subbed for vermouth.  Or something like that.  The original name was a portmanteau courtesy of Cutes: Ginotto.  I added a silent "d" for the Pernod. 

This drink will appear (sometime) on the Mixoloseum blog.  Even if Frederic takes matters into his own hands...


I actually subbed for the Pernod, but we'll just keep that to ourselves.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

"You Smell Like Booze & Onion Rings"

The other night, the above is what the missus said to me.  It was true.  I'd had a Coronado Luau Special and some Onion Rings N' Ketchup flavour Doritos.  Yes Doug, onions.  

So, about the drink....

I have enjoyed this drink since the first one I made last summer using Rick's recipe.  This time though, some substitutions were required.  (It is a sweet drink so I wonder if further subs tweaking might be needed... Though it might be a "whole 'nother" drink by then.)

Anyway, much like Keiths Nui Nui post I will now post about a drink already covered elsewhere.

Coronado Luau Special Type Beverage
4 oz orange juice
0.25 oz orgeat
1.5 oz Lamb's Navy Rum
1.5 oz Trader Vic's Silver Rum
0.5 oz triple sec
0.5 oz Metaxa

This is meant to be a blended with crushed ice. Even though there is juice and syrup I stirred and then poured over crushed ice.  I was planning to shake but chose a shaker that was too small for the job.  So stirring it was.   I think the funk and sulfur of Havana Club might be a good way to cut the sweetness...


Tuesday, June 07, 2011

That's Not A Mai Tai

The Mai Tai (like the Tom Collins) is another of those drinks that everyone knows.  At least, everyone thinks they know...

If you know then keep reading.  If you don't know please follow some or all of these links to get up to speed.  I'll wait here.  You're impatient?  Okay, read this one:

Not so impatient:

There are likely more resources but that ought to cover it.  You read them all right?  If ever you hear me speak of a Mai Tai I mean the Bergeron Mai Tai.

Now that that's out of the way here's where this is all going.  Most encounters with a Mai Tai will be a different drink calling itself a Mai Tai.  This is what the bar down the street from me serves.  It may be a tasty drink (never had it) but I'd be inclined to actually order it if they gave it it's own name.  I don't recall all the ingredients but a Mai Tai it is not.  Just like that bar most cocktail books have recipes that call for grenadine or pineapple juice or other things that don't belong.  The disparity between all the Mai Tai recipes in my library caused quite a bit of confusion for quite some time, especially when one books Mai Tai sounded nearly like another books Zombie.  (If you think I'm going to open that can of worms, I'm not)

So along with my other books i had written off  The Complete Bartender as a source for a Mai Tai.  Then I actually went back to it and looked at the recipe within....

1 oz light rum
0.5 oz orgeat syrup
0.5 oz triple sec
1.5 oz sour mix

1) Fill mixing glass with ice
2) Add light rum, orgeat syrup, triple sec and sour mix
3) Shake
4) Strain into a Collins glass filled with ice
5) Garnish with a cherry and an orange slice

The Complete Bartender, Robyn M Feller

Oh! So close!


So close I can almost taste it.  Almost taste it but it's too sweet.  Really sweet.  Dood, put more rum in this!  Dark rum, man.  (I used Trader Vic's Silver for this drink.  I also used 0.75 oz lime and 0.75 oz simple for my "sour mix").

So why have I posted a bastardized Mai Tai?  Because I want to know the source material.  There are some classic cocktails in the book (and some victims of 1990 also) but the fact that the Aviation contains apricot brandy leads one toward Trader Vic (or Patrick Duffy).  Read this:  then report back.  If the Aviation is might be from Trader Vic why does the Mai Tai recipe contain light rum, and one ounce at that?

Has anyone else encountered this Pseudo Mai Tai?
Any idea where it came from?


Sunday, June 05, 2011

Lamb's Navy Rum Flip

2oz Lamb's Navy Rum
1 tsp powdered sugar
1 whole egg

dry shake. shake with ice. double strain.

Watch (in horror) as I poorly make a flip. I didn't have the shaker sealed properly and ended up with rum all over the counter and my hand during the dry shake. I should have transferred everything to a different shaker but I did not. As a result my hesitant shaking with ice(as I attempted to avoid further mess) didn't really do the trick. The drink was tasty though.

This one's for you Erik.


Monday, May 23, 2011

Tom Collins - Federal Glass Shaker Recipe

Ah, the Tom Collins.  One of those drinks you know of long before you're old enough to drink.  Possibly because of a paper placemat in a Chinese restaurant. Possibly not.  Maybe that's just me, anyway...

Tom Collins Shaker

The Recipe:
juice of 1 lime or lemon
1 teaspoon sugar
2 oz gin
shake and add ice
club soda and fruit

And i thought The Daiquiri recipe was weird!  Well, the last item anyway but what do i know?

So, lime or lemon, eh?  That certainly makes for wide variation in the drink.  I used a lime, a large one. I ended up with a bit more than 1 oz of juice.  I used powdered sugar this time.  I did shake it (which made me think it was a fizz, more on that later) and I shook it with ice despite the directions. I added ice to a collins glass.  (Is that what they meant?  I hope so).  Far as fruit goes I went with a cherry and a lime twist.

Tom Collins overhead

This was okay, but a little lighter refreshment than I was looking for.  I would have prefered a Fizz or even think some Rose's topped with soda would have had more flavour.  Maybe I need a more flavourful gin...

So how is this not a Fizz?  I defer to The Underhill Lounge for that one.   Collins=long tall and soda; Fizz= short and boozy.  Short and boozy wins (almost) every time!

Next up in the series: The Martini!


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Missed it by a mile...

This month's MxMo was floral, or something. Hosted by Dave? I was going to make a Gin Daisy but that didn't happen.  Is "I was out of town" a reasonable excuse for missing the MxMo? Yeah, I didn't think so...

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Friday The 13th Punch Up

I've been sitting on this for a while now and I've still not got a definitive recipe but I'm getting close.

It started New Year's Eve last year.  I wanted something I could sip throughout the evening.  We had blood oranges so I decided to incorporate them. I knew that Rick had a drink calling for blood orange and I started searching.  I found the Cthulhu Punch eventually.  At the time Kraken wasn't available here but I did have some Captain Morgan Spiced Rum....

There were some other ingredient discrepancies so I decided to improvise.  (I think the Dood calls it a riff). In fact all of the booze needed to be subbed. I thought the savouriness of Fee Bros celery bitters would be a good sub for the Kummel and as over proof rum was all I had on hand I decided on incorporating it in the recipe rather than floating. This is what I made:


New Year's Punch
1 oz Capt Morgan Spiced Rum
1 oz Metaxa 7 star
1/2 oz Brugal 151
1½ oz orzata
2 oz blood orange juice
3/4 oz lime juice
2 dashes Fee Bros celery bitters
5 dashes Angostura bitters

Shake, strain over ice in a tall glass.  Garnish with lime shell. Fill lime shell with 1 oz Creme de Cacao.

I guess this was a bloody scorpion or something. At least that's what I considered it to be.  The Metaxa standing in for Brandy. The Creme de Cacao (mostly) stayed in the shell until the end of the drink and added a nice finish. Other than that there wasn't much flavour evolution.  It was tasty, mind you, just mostly the same taste the whole night even as the ice melted.

I didn't revisit this until recently. Why I'm unsure of. But that's what happened.  I blame Erik onions.


Recently I had some imbibing company and decided to bring this back out. The drink was as such:

Cinco De Mayo Punch
1 oz homemade spiced rum*
1 oz Metaxa 5 star
1 oz Creme de Cacao
1.5 oz orzata/orgeat
1.5 oz blood orange juice
0.75 oz lime juice
2 dashes Fee Bros celery bitters
6 dashes Angostura bitters

Shake, strain in a bucket over crushed ice.  Float 1/4 oz Brugal 151.  No garnish.

Crushed Ice

I enjoyed this.  So did my guests. Changing the Creme de Cacao to a main in gredient rather than a float was a good idea (IMO). "Tasty" was the comment as I recall. My guests had more than did I. I had a mini.  Then I added pineapple juice.  Not really what it needed.  (You'll notice a change in the Metaxa.  The 5 star, though good, is more of a mixer than the 7 so why not).

I decided I should revisit it again and not wait 5 months this time!  So here goes:

Friday 13th Punch
1 oz spiced rum
1 oz Metaxa 5 Star
1 oz Creme de Cacao
1 oz blood orange juice
1 oz orzata/orgeat
3/4 oz lime juice
8 deshes Angostura bitters
3 dashes Fee Bros celery bitters

Shake with ice and strain over ice in a tall glass. Garnish with grated nutmeg, mint leaves and a lime shell filled with 3/4 oz Brugal 151. 

Don't forget to "spank" the mint†. Or as has been heard recently in the bar: "Spank Da Mint"

Friday 13th

Perhaps I didn't use enough mint but I didn't really notice it's aroma.  I did notice the nutmeg and 151.  The mint might have been out muscled.  The drink was tasty but it might need something else‡. Maybe some amaro? I don't know.  I'll keep experimenting I guess. I encourage you to try one and see what you think.  I did push the mint to the bottom of my glass and "muddle" it a little with the straw as the end approached.  By this time the bite of the 151 had become noticeable and the sweetness of the orgeat and juice had gone home for the night.  It's always a nice development when a drink evolves as you drink it. I think a 151 Mojito might be in the future.


* I didn't make my rum from a specific recipe but if you're going to make your own I recommend the DJ's recipe.
† Usually I use the countertop rather than my hand.
Tiare seems to think Chartreuse is the magic answer. "magic drops transforms an average drink into a potion of dreams" ;

Friday, May 06, 2011

White Owl At The Nite Owl

Last night. Drinking with C-Dot and his brother-in-law. First the latest incarnation of my rum punch, then down the street to the Nite Owl.  I had some White Owl on the rocks.  I don't think I'll be buying a bottle...

The punch though, I think I'm nearly ready to post the recipe. Stay tuned.


Saturday, April 23, 2011

Daiquiri- Federal Glass Shaker Recipe

After a hiatus we arrive at the Daiquiri.  For the rum I have diluted some Brugal 151.  This may have been a bad idea.  We'll see....
Daiquiri Shaker

Here's the recipe:

juice of 1/2 a lime
1/2 tsp sugar
1.5oz light rum
shake with fine ice
cocktail glass

I ended up with a little more than 0.5oz of juice from the lime.  I shook with regular ice, not fine.  The last "ingredient" is an interesting one and the only one of it's kind on the shaker.  I suppose the makers of this needed to add something.  It's such a simple recipe and has no garnish they decided to fill the fifth cell with "cocktail glass."  What would you have done?

Man, is this sour!  Yum! 

My diluted Brugal 151 ended up being about 50%Alc/Vol. and was much more palatable straight than the Bacardi had been.  (Let's say that that was a bad bottle and leave it at that). So it turns out that there's light rum in the house after all. There are also possibilities for Daiquiri experimentation as the LCBO is now listing Maraschino...


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Ponce

You know, not many people use the word ponce.  I heard it yesterday though and it got me thinking... 

The Ponce
12oz El Dorado 3
8oz Aperol
4oz lime juice
shake, shake, shake, shake, shake, shake, shake, shake, strain, up

Not really an original.  I just took Sean Mike's Poofter and multiplied everything by eight.  Enjoy!

Comments welcome.


Monday, April 04, 2011

MxMo LVI: Your Best

Fizz? Or Is That A Buck?

As I mentioned, I was afraid that my best wouldn't do. Then I realised that what I consider a non-alcoholic drink is in fact a highball. A highball I make and tweak often. There's alcohol in them thar bitters!

Anyway, the drink first. The story second. Actually something else first.

(I thought first of some other drinks but I haven't perfected the Whatnot tincture so it isn't fair to expect others to make a Rum Whatnot. And my New Year's drink was really just a modified Scorpion...)

The Drink

juice of 1 lime (0.75oz)
0.75oz Orzata*
2-3 dashes celery bitters
13-17 dashes Angostura bitters
5oz Barrit's Ginger Beer**

Combine juice, orzata, celery bitters, and 8-10 dashes of Ango over ice in a shaker. Shake to shuffle time (swinging 12/8). Meanwhile fill a highball glass with ice. Cover the ice in the glass with 3-4 dashes of Angostura. Strain the mixture into the highball. Top with ginger beer. Add 2-3 more dashes of Angostura to colour the fizzy foam.

Empty lime shell.

Fizz, Orzata Buck?***

So, depending on how heavy a hand you have that's about 0.50oz to 0.75oz of bitters in your drink. At 45% Alc/Vol. (more or less) that makes this far from a non-alcoholic beverage. Not the booziest of drinks mind you but still a cocktail. Enjoy.

*Go ahead, you can use orgeat instead.
**If you've not got Barrit's you can sub D&G. Failing that 1/2 Barr's and 1/2 Vernors will give you the ginger and the barrel aging tastes.

The Story

How did I end up here? It all started with being bloated and uncomfortable. I read somewhere that bitters and soda was good for stomach upset. I gave it a go. It was a success. As time went on I started to enjoy my "medicine" and upped the amount of bitters. It got to the point that my drink was fizzy and very red. Almost like Sorrel Fizz.

At some point I was in need of "medicine" and had no club soda. I used ginger ale instead. I found that I enjoyed this new beverage even more than my old one. In fact I added the Bitters Highball to the house cocktail menu. This enjoyment of Angostura carried over to other cocktails. I found myself using far more dashes than most recipes called for. Sort of like how some people put salt on already salty fare**** I suppose. Bitters are the salt & pepper of cocktails don't you know.

Just like the stomach settler things progressed once there was orgeat orzata in the house. At first the suggested refresher of topping the syrup with soda. Then the soda changed to ginger ale, then to ginger beer. Then I got the bright idea to use lime juice too. At some point the "bitters as seasoning" hypothesis had to be tried and above is the recipe I've arrived at. I think that's it. I may have left something out. I'll let this sit for a day before posting just in case.

Just One More Thing

I'd be remiss if I didn't include a link to both Mixology Monday and to Spirited Remix. The event and our host. Perhaps that's two things... And another thing. When I searched for Gioia Orzata I got more results for my blog than for anything else. Hmmm....

***Yes, just like the band Therapy? there's a question mark in the name.
****Just like salty food this drink begets another. Leaving you enough ginger beer after two to swirl in the bottom of the glass and drink the remaining syrup and lime.

Saturday, April 02, 2011

Original And Best

This month's Mixology Monday is hosted by DJ Hawaiian Shirt. Instead of just choosing a drink for an occasion or situation or based on an ingredient the theme is "Your Best."


My best? uh oh....

I have visions of Dee Snider shouting singing at me, "If that's your best, your best won't do!"

Let's consider cooking for a moment. Even though I cook (nearly) every day very few of the recipes are mine. Most are from books and such or are slight variations on the same. The ones that are mine are usually my take on a classic (e.g. chicken noodle/rice soup). In fact the one recipe that is completely my own appeared in Food & Drink several months after I had made it. I don't for a moment think that my kitchen was spied upon. I know that certain flavours and techniques make sense together and it's not unusual for similar/same recipes to be developed independently. The same happens with drink recipes.

So what is my drink that I've invented, tinkered with, served to guests, and consider my best?

We'll see.

Can it be a mocktail?


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Blogs Are What Happen When You're Busy Making Other Plans.

When you've nothing to blog about direct you readers to other blogs. I believe this is part of Doug's Rule2. Check out The Speakista and realise that we all neglect things once in a while. Then go to 12bottle bar for some introspection and to cry in your drink over the fact that your blog will never look as good, your photos never be as well lit, you prose never as thoroughly researched. But your drinks will be just as tasty!

Friday, March 25, 2011

A Curling Story

So, I said I'd tell you a story didn't I? Let's see.....

I had a bottle of Bacardi® that I was going to pour down the sink. The missus suggested making spiced rum. I was skeptical. But, even though the DJ cautions us that "Infusing doesn't make crappy rum taste better, so pick a good rum." I did it anyway. The first taste test was very citrus forward. I removed the Meyer lemon peel and added more spices. The second tasting still had a lot of citrus so I added more orange peel and figured I'd have a nice replacement for my (now empty) bottle of Triple Sec.

Meanwhile the city was slowly being overrun by curlers. The Brier was on! At least it was about to be on....

We (the missus and me) had been drinking quite a bit of tea from David's Tea. In particular the Coco Chai Rooibos. "You should make a syrup out of this." she said to me. So I did!

I combined the rum with the syrup and some lemon and had a tasty beverage. A few days later I was chatting in the mixo bar and was informed that the theme was citrus. I already had a drink, excellent!

Anyway, I wasn't going to be anywhere near a PC that particular Thursday so I asked Sean Mike about sending in a recipe by proxy. This is what I did. The truncation necessary for tweeting sort of made the curling jokes less funny. Oh well. (I'm not sure if Sean Mike or anyone else in the chat got the jokes anyway...)

So, why an Indian Broom? At first I was trying to work in the rooibos in a scientific way. I though about "shrub" being in the name but since there's no vinegar in the drink I figured that wouldn't do. Checking wikipedia I discovered that Rooibos is a broom. A broom you say? Hmmm...

Instead of trying to force some sort of India-S. Africa-Caribbean name I decided to go in another direction. Rooibos is a broom. You can't curl without a broom. The chai is from India. The rum is from the West Indies. Hmmm...

My original mixing directions included some puns. They'll make more sense if you read this. They won't be funny, they'll just make more sense.

The directions were:

Shake in the 7th. Pour in the house a tankard . Serve on the rocks. Garnish with a peel.

Get it? No? That's okay...


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Top Ten Things To Do With Infused Rum

DISCLAIMER: This is not an actual "Top Ten" list

So, I was going to link the snot out of my previous post. I still plan to do this, but I wanted to get a recipe out of the way first. I've also been considering format and titling. Should I just put the drink name in the post title? Should I give the story before or after the recipe? Does it need a photo? Do I write a long amusing story or is simpler better? Who knows? The CSWOG knows!

Anyway, here it is:

Indian Broom

Indian Broom

1.5oz citrus spiced rum
0.5oz rooibos coco chai syrup
0.5oz lemon juice

Shake, rocks, peel.

I think I spent longer on the name than I did on the drink. It's okay. It may need tweaking. The syrup didn't turn out as I'd hoped so maybe syrupping properly is all that's needed. (that's right I used syrup as a verb). My rum was going to be spiced rum but the citrus peels overtook the other flavours. I added more orange and decided I didn't need to replace my Triple Sec.

So about the name....

I had curling on the brain. I'll expand on that later. I'll tell you about that and the Lemon Party.

The name, the party, and some other stuff...


Tuesday, March 22, 2011


The card-reader is still packed away somewhere. This has stalled my current Flickr project. It continues but all the photos remain trapped on the card in the camera. Trapped for the time being anyway. Some of the photos are of cocktails. I'm hesitant to post recipes without photos. Does this really matter though? Likely it does not. While some books do have photos (and quite good ones at that) most cocktail books have few if any photos. Some have none but have drawings. So with that in mind perhaps it's time to post about some original recipes...


We'll see.

How's this: I'm post my recipes with place-holders for photos after I "Rule2" this post? Deal?

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Paperback Writer?

This morning on CBC Radio 2 Bob Mackowycz played The Beatles Paperback Writer. He then went on to point out how at the time hardcover books were seen to be superior and whatnot. He searched for a modern example of a 60's paperback and came up with Blog Writer. I think that's not quite it. Nice try though Bob. We still love you.

Friday, March 11, 2011

i REALLY like pickled onions.

So there I was wondering what to do with all those cocktail onions in the fridge. What to do besides put them in a Gibson or eat them. It seems my penchant for Gibsons is really just an excuse to eat onions. Should I drop the pretense and have a different drink? A different drink whilst eating onions? Perhaps. Just eat the onions and leave out the drink? Perhaps.

It occurred to me that there must be other drinks requiring an onion as garnish. Damned if I knew what they were. Damned if I didn't do any research whatsoever to find out what they were. Mostly it was an idle thought each time I ate a pickled onion. (Or each time I made a Gibson). On the proverbial back-burner those thoughts remained. They remained until Erik got down to "TEN!".

Behold The Yellow Rattler. It seems like a dare doesn't it?

"Shake in iced cocktail shaker & strain
    3/4 oz gin
    3/4 oz sweet vermouth
    3/4 oz dry vermouth
    3/4 oz orange juice

Add onion

Serve in a cocktail glass (4.5 oz)"

"(U)nless you REALLY like pickled onions, its not one of those things that you’re probably going to be making any time soon." blogged Erik.

"I like pickled onions," I thought to myself. "I REALLY like them..."

So from the back-burner to the front-burner came the Yellow Rattler. I did not however make note of the proportions. I did remember the comment that it's basically a Bronx with an onion in it. One night I made a Bronx, and put an onion in it. I used the recipe from American Bar. It was enjoyable. I'm a fan of orange and wine and onion. There's a pork loin recipe we make that uses garlic, onion, orange juice, hoisin sauce and white wine so the flavour wasn't anything I found unpleasant. Still it's definitely not a dessert cocktail or any such thing.

A few days later (more or less) I reviewed the proportions. Much to my delight it's an equal measure cocktail.

"Fantastic. I only need to dirty one jigger"

So I made one. I liked it too! My previous experience with orange juice in (short dry) cocktails has left me unimpressed. The Monkey Gland and Satan's Whiskers aren't likely to be made by me. A Coronado Luau Special or a Scorpion on the other hand....

The only complaint was that I didn't really notice the gin in the Yellow Rattler. I've been using Cara Cara oranges. I should review the recipe with Valencias or such. I also have attempted Old Tom Gin. I noticed the gin more in that version than in previous ones. Hmm. Not sure why that is. Maybe Beefeater isn't ideal in Bronx style cocktails? Maybe it is the oranges? Who can say?

Okay, now on to the real reason for this post. Reviewing the 10 recipes at Cocktaildb that feature onion as garnish I wondered about The Martinez. Why? I don't know. I just did. So I surfed on over to Kaiser Penguin to read the recipe comparisons. Reading through the comments I stopped at one from Rowen. The name seemed familiar....

"Oh, right." says I,"He commented where I did. On Spirited Remix."

Anyway... I discovered at The Fogged In Lounge that Rowen has turned March into the month of Bronx cocktails. Theme month? Excellent! A month of the same drink (style)? Excellent! Someone drinking so I don't have to? Excellent Typical. I mean that's the point of a booze-blog, right?

So maybe, just maybe I'll play along at home with the Bronx varitaions. Well, some of them anyway (not the Silver or Golden. Likely the ones with bitters). You should try it too! If you like that sort of thing...

Or just eat some onions.


Friday, March 04, 2011

TDN Charlie Sheen

Uh... You know about the TDN right? Anyway, this week's theme (courtesy of Sean Mike) was Charlie Sheen. No amount of description can properly convey what it was like. The combination of cocktail creating drinking, Charlie Sheen quotes and general ridiculousness can't be recreated, or even accurately described. You had to be there. You should be there! Really, next week, see you there! (But first, login right now and start chatting.)

So after several drink recipes and several more jokes it was my turn. This is what I came up with:

(insert photo here)
Tiger Blood #4

1.5oz Fernet Branca
1.5oz grapefruit juice
0.25oz cinnamon syrup

Shake. Cure your mind. Strain through your fingertips in to a glass made of poetry.

Check out the other drinks and some joke/quote tweets. Then maybe try the drinks, or something.


Friday, February 25, 2011

Volcano Bowls

In the wide world of Tiki there is the bowl. Usually filled with some spin on a Scorpion. Usually for two (or more!). Usually it's awesome. Sometimes it's epically awesome! Here's an old menu depiction courtesy of Let's Tiki

Saturday, February 12, 2011


We've moved. There is no longer a bar. (There's no longer a basement! But that's not the point.) Some downsizing of the bottle inventory is needed. I'll just have to do it slowly and responsibly. My attempt to consume some liquor before the move didn't really happen. Though I did save us from having to move the vanilla vodka. I made a drink with the vanilla vodka and blue curacao that reminded me of a blue raspberry Slush-Puppy....

I need to get back on the shaker recipe train. I'm hesitant about the daiquiri. I don't want to use the Bacardi. In fact I may just pour it down the sink and recycle the bottle. That will leave me with Brugal 151 as the only light rum choice. That just might work...

Also, the Tortuga deserves another try. I really do think that we had some bad limes...

Stay tuned. Stay thirsty.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Hello In Finnish

Hyvää päivää! The things you learn when you log in to Flickr...

Monday, January 03, 2011