Saturday, September 10, 2011

Black Cherry Mule

This is the latest entry in an every-Saturday feature. To provide it, I comb through all sorts of sources -- my own archives, bar books, readers' suggestions, distillers' ideas -- even press releases from breathless PR people seeking to get their clients' products mentioned. If you have a favorite recipe to share, don't hesitate to send it along. 

Looking for something a little out of the ordinary? Something refreshing, but with a bit of a kick? Then you'll probably enjoy the Black Cherry Mule.

Ingredients:

2 ounces Belvedere vodka 
6 fresh cherries 
Dash of simple syrup 
Dash of fresh lime juice 
Dash of Peychaud bitters

Muddle all ingredients thoroughly. Then, shake and strain into a highball glass filled with fresh ice. Top with a float of ginger beer and garnish with a while fresh cherry.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Kew Punch

Kew Punch is a concoction that takes advantage of fresh summer fruits and a lot of liquid flavors. Seems like a perfect way to celebrate the kids going back to school and hanging on to a touch of summer at the same time.

1 part vodka 
1 part sweet vermouth 
1 part orange curacao 
⅔ part gin 
⅔ part cherry brandy 
2 dashes Angostura bitters 
2 parts ginger ale 
2 parts sparkling lemonade 
Assorted sliced summer fruits

Measure the vodka, vermouth, curacao, gin and brandy into a pitcher of ice and stir well to chill. Strain into a highball glass full of fresh ice cubes and the sliced fruits (peaches, apricots, strawberries, etc.). Add the bitters, then pour in chilled ginger ale and lemonade. Garnish with lemon twists and mint leaves. 

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Final days for whiskey book discount

My new book, "Barrels & Drams: The History of Whisk(e)y In Jiggers and Shots," will officially be released on September 6.

The retail price then will be $18.95, but you can get a hefty 33% pre-release discount from Amazon.com by going here.

It is a collection I co-wrote and edited with essays from numerous writers famous in the field, from F. Paul Pacult to David Wondrich to Tom Wolfe.

You'll discover the spread of whiskey throughout the world and how it helped build countries. Read profiles of some of the most famous giants of the industry as Jack Daniel, George Smith and the Beam family.

Plus, go behind the scenes of Prohibition to check out the legendary gangsters, small-time rumrunners, a famous NASCAR champion who made his mark as a moonshine runner. And, you'll get insiders' looks at legitimate whiskey-making in such diverse spots as Scotland, Ireland, the U.S., South Africa, India and Japan.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

French 75

This is the latest entry in an every-Saturday feature. To compile it, I'll be combing through all sorts of sources -- my own archives, old bar books, readers' suggestions, distillers' ideas -- even press releases from breathless PR people seeking to get their clients' products mentioned. If you have a favorite recipe to share, don't hesitate to send it along.

Mixologist Chris McMillian of the Ritz-Carlton Hotel's Library Lounge in New Orleans is known as a master of the classics.

This is one of his favorites, named after the famous French World War I artillery piece, the 75mm howitzer, also called a "French 75" ("Soixante Quinze" in French) and is a favorite New Orleans brunch drink.

Ingredients:

1½ ounces gin (preferably Bombay White Label)
1 ounce simple syrup
¾ ounce fresh lemon juice
Champagne

In a pint glass, pour gin, simple syrup and lemon juice. Mix with a shaker. Use a strainer to pour the mixture into a Champagne flute and slowly top off the glass with champagne. Give the drink a brief stir and garnish with a lemon spiral.


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Triple Orange Margarita

This is the latest entry in an every-Saturday feature. To compile it, I'll be combing through all sorts of sources -- my own archives, old bar books, readers' suggestions, distillers' ideas -- even press releases from breathless PR people seeking to get their clients' products mentioned. If you have a favorite recipe to share, don't hesitate to send it along.

Ronaldo P. Colli, mixologist at the Americano restaurant in San Francisco, was asked by the makers of Gran Gala Triple Orange Liqueur to come up with a seasonal margarita showcasing their product. He came up with an excellent one, and here it is.

INGREDIENTS:

1½ ounces ultra premium tequila
¾ ounce Gran Gala Triple Orange
1 ounce orange juice, freshly squeezed
½ ounce lime juice, freshly squeezed
¼ ounce agave nectar
1 lime wheel
1 orange peel

Pour Gran Gala, tequila, orange juice, lime juice, agave nectar and orange peel into a shaker with ice. Shake vigorously and strain into a chilled glass filled with ice. Strain into a chilled margarita glass if you prefer your margarita up. Garnish with a lime wheel and the same orange peel on top of the cocktail. Salted rim is traditional, but optional.

(Agave nectar is a natural sweetener. Adjust according to desired sweetness. Available at gourmet stores or from online retailers.)

Saturday, August 13, 2011

The Seelbach Cocktail

This is the latest entry in an every-Saturday feature. To compile it, I'll be combing through all sorts of sources -- my own archives, old bar books, readers' suggestions, distillers' ideas -- even press releases from breathless PR people seeking to get their clients' products mentioned. If you have a favorite recipe to share, don't hesitate to send it along.

The Seelbach Cocktail comes from the gorgeous and historic Seelbach Hilton Hotel in Louisville, KY, one of the South's "golden age" luxury hotels.

The facility opened in 1905 and since then has hosted nine American presidents and innumerable dignitaries and celebrities. The stunning ambiance of the place, awash with oak and marble and gilded surfaces, inspired F. Scott Fitzgerald to use the hotel as the backdrop for Tom and Daisy Buchanan's wedding in "The Great Gatsby."

The cocktail has become a "must have" when one visits Louisville.

The ingredients:

4 ounces quality champagne
1½ ounces bourbon
½ ounce triple sec
7 dashes Peychaud bitters
7 dashes Angostura bitters

Add bourbon, bitters, and triple sec first. Fill rest of glass with champagne. Garnish with orange twist, serve in a champagne flute.