Saturday, August 8, 2020

planter's punch (improved)

2 oz Dark Jamaican Rum (Plantation Xaymaca)
1 1/2 oz Black Tea chilled (English Breakfast)
1 oz Lime Juice
1/2 oz Sugar

Dissolve sugar in the lime juice and tea. Add the rum and crushed ice, swizzle to mix and chill, and garnish as you see fit (mint sprig and freshly grated nutmeg).
Two Saturdays ago, I read a reference for an improved Planter's Punch recipe that included tea in the mix. I soon found the recipe in Jeff Berry's Potions of the Caribbean with the history that it was Colonel A.R. Woolley of Lemon Hart's 1957 revision of Fred Myer's 1920 recipe that swapped in tea for the water in the "parts of weak" aspect. Once prepared, this Planter's Punch welcomed the nose with mint and woody spice aromas. Next, a semi-dry lime and caramel sip glided into rich rum dried out by elegant black tea notes.

Friday, August 7, 2020

px sherry mudslide

1 1/2 oz Pedro Ximenez Sherry (Oxford 1970)
1 1/2 oz Coffee Liqueur (Kahlua)
1 oz Half & Half
1 pinch Sea Salt
1/2 cup Vanilla Ice Cream
1 cup Crushed Ice

Blend until smooth and pour into a chilled milkshake or Collins glass. I added a freshly grated coffee bean garnish.

After utilizing my purchase of vanilla ice cream a few days before in the Glorious Fourth, I considered making Jeffry Morgenthaler's Grasshopper variation. However, in that search, I was more smitten by the Mudslide recipe that he posted back in May given the sherry component. When Morgenthaler opened Pepe Le Moko in 2014, he wanted to have a rotating seasonal milkshake drink and had developed a few to begin the series. The problem was that when he opened with the Grasshopper milkshake with a hint of Fernet Branca, it was such a hit that he decided that the slot was filled and thus would not be revamped every few months. Left behind was this gem; the classic Mudslide of coffee liqueur, Irish cream, and vodka got transformed here into coffee liqueur, Pedro Ximenez sherry, and vanilla ice cream that he described as "a wonderful, creamy milkshake built around flavors of coffee, rum raisin, vanilla, cinnamon, and dark chocolate. It's... kind of out of this world."
The PX Sherry Mudslide greeted the nose with a coffee and raisin aroma that led into a creamy and roast-filled sip. Next, the swallow continued on with coffee and raisin flavors with an elegant vanilla note from the ice cream.

Thursday, August 6, 2020


2 oz Vodka (Barr Hill)
1/2 oz Falernum (Velvet)
1/2 oz Cucumber Syrup (*)
3/4 oz Lime Juice
3/4 oz Pineapple Juice
5 dash Absinthe (1/8 oz Kübler)

Whip shake with crushed ice, pour into a Tiki mug, and top with crushed ice. Garnish with a pineapple frond, pineapple half moon, and cucumber rosette (mint sprigs and a cucumber slice).
(*) Equal parts cucumber juice and sugar. While the original used a juicer, I muddled cucumber chunks followed by a fine straining step. At one bar I worked at, we used a blender followed by fine straining.
With a beautiful cucumber from our farm share (my garden's cucumbers will be ready by the time this post airs) in my possession, I returned to a recipe from Brian Maxwell's quarantine drinks on his Shaker of Spirits blog. The recipe was the Yoi-Yoi-Comber which was he posted on the eleventh day of lockdown, and I did not have a cucumber at the time but marked the page for future reference. The concept was a tribute to Joe Scialom's Cou-Cou-Comber as well as to Myron Cope, the voice of the Pittsburgh Steelers who used the word "Yoi!" a lot during his announcing. The Yoi-Yoi-Comber greeted the senses with an anise, mint, and cucumber aroma. Next, lime, vegetal, and pineapple notes on the sip announced the arrival of pineapple, cucumber, ginger, and anise flavors on the swallow.

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

exit club cocktail

1 1/2 oz Dry Gin (Beefeater)
1/2 oz Cocchi Americano or Lillet Blanc (Cocchi Americano)
1/2 oz Blanc Vermouth (Dolin)
1/2 oz Jeppson's Malört
2 dash Orange Bitters (Angostura Orange)

Stir with ice, strain into a cocktail coupe, and garnish with an orange twist.

Two Wednesdays ago, I wondered what a Martini riff would be like with malört as a modifier? Would it be elegant as well as tasty? Therefore, I started with the Poet's Dream and besides swapping the liqueurs, I exchanged the dry vermouth for a split of Cocchi Americano and blanc vermouth since I figured that a little extra sweetness would round out the edges here and I recalled how well malört paired with Lillet in the Destreza. For a name, I paid tribute to a punk club in Chicago (given the Chicago-loved herbal liqueur) called Exit where I had been taken years ago.
The Exit Club Cocktail presented orange and piny juniper aromas leading into wormwood notes on the nose. Next, a light apricot and peach sip slid into juniper and coriander leading into surly wormwood on the swallow with an orange finish. Overall, it was elegant with the malört working akin to the Fernet in the Hanky Panky.

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

tchoupitoulas punch

750 mL Wild Turkey 101 Bourbon (3 oz)
1/2 cup Benedictine (1/2 oz)
1 2/3 cup Sweet Vermouth (1 1/2 oz Cocchi)
1 1/2 cup Orange Juice (1 1/2 oz)
1 1/2 cup Lemon Juice (1 1/2 oz)
2 cup Earl Grey Tea, strong and cooled (2 oz)
1/2 cup Rich Simple Syrup (3/4 oz 1:1)
1 tsp Peychaud's Bitters (2 dash)
3 Peach or 1/2 Pineapple, sliced as garnish (1/2 Peach)

Combine in a bowl with a large ice block. Garnish with the peach or pineapple slices.
Two Tuesdays ago, I was in the mood for something refreshing, so I turned to Dan Searing's The Punch Bowl book. There, I was lured in by the Tchoupitoulas Punch that Scott Baird and Josh Harris of the Bon Vivants created for their yearly charity event at Tales of the Cocktail called Pig and Punch. The charity is two pronged with an early part bringing bartenders to do manual labor to fix up a school in New Orleans and the second part being a fundraiser bash held out in a park in the Marigny district where this punch was served. In the cup, this punch proffered Bourbon, orange, and cherry aromas to the nose. Next, grape, orange, and lemon notes on the sip led into Bourbon, black tea, and peach flavors on the swallow.

Monday, August 3, 2020

golden glove

2 oz Jamaican Gold Rum (Plantation Xaymaca)
1/2 oz Lime Juice
1 tsp Cointreau
1 tsp Sugar

Dissolve the sugar in the lime juice, add the rest of the ingredients, and blend with 12 oz crushed ice (5 oz). Pour into a chilled cocktail glass (rocks glass) and garnish with an orange twist.
Two Mondays ago to beat the heatwave, I searched for a blender drink to enjoy on our deck. The one that I selected was the Golden Glove from the 1935 Bar La Florida booklet via Beachbum Berry's Potions of the Caribbean book. This Cuban drink was Constatino Ribalaigua Vert's boxing tribute riff of the La Florida Daiquiri No. 2, and I opted for Plantation's Jamaican rum as the base as a middle point between Appleton and my higher ester offerings. Once blended with a reduced amount of ice, the Golden Glove squared off with an orange and caramel aroma. Next, tangerine and lime notes on the sip jabbed into a slightly funky rum melding into orange peel flavors on the swallow.

Sunday, August 2, 2020

something tequila

3 oz Añejo Tequila (Cimarron Reposado)
1 oz Lime Juice
1 oz Orange Juice
1 oz Pineapple Juice
1 oz Simple Syrup
1/2 oz Passion Fruit Syrup

Whip shake with crushed ice, pour into a barrel-shaped Tiki mug, and top with crushed ice. Garnish with mint, citrus wedges or wheels, flowers, and swizzle sticks (mint sprigs and honeysuckles).
Two Sundays ago, I spied the Something Tequila in Chloe Frechette's Easy Tiki book. The recipe was crafted by John Bernard at Cleveland's Porco Lounge & Tiki Room in response to requests for "A Margarita? Or something tequila?" by merging aspects of the Margarita with the 1960s era Rum Barrel. In the glass, the Something Tequila welcomed mint over orange and passion fruit aromas to the nose. Next, tropical fruit notes from the lime, pineapple, orange, and passion fruit filled the sip, and the swallow began with vegetal tequila flavors followed by passion fruit and mango-like elements.

Saturday, August 1, 2020

the glorious fourth

1 drink Brandy (2 oz Courvoisier VS Cognac)
1 dash Jamaican Rum (1/4 oz Smith & Cross)
Juice of 1 Lime (3/4 oz)
4 dash Gomme Syrup (1/2 oz Simple)
1 large tablespoon Ice Cream (1+ oz Vanilla)

Shake and strain into a fancy glass.
The Glorious Fourth was one of the fancy drinks created by William Schmidt in his 1891 The Flowing Bowl, and the recipe came under discussion on Kindred Cocktails due to an early July post on Punch Drinks. Therefore, two Saturdays ago, I picked up some vanilla ice cream on my shopping expedition to test out this Brandy Sour taken in a dessert direction. Once prepared using the ice cream as the only cooling agent, the Glorious Fourth conjured up a Cognac and vanilla aroma with a hint of rum funk. Next a creamy lime sip with a touch of caramel notes proceeded into brandy, funky rum, and vanilla flavors on the swallow.

Friday, July 31, 2020


2 oz Tequila (Lunazul Blanco)
1 oz Lime Juice (3/4 oz)
3/4 oz Orgeat

Shake with ice, strain into a double old fashioned glass with ice, and garnish with freshly grated nutmeg.

Two Fridays ago, I returned to Michael Madrusan and Zara Young's A Spot at the Bar book and selected the Infante attributed to Giuseppe Gonzalez. As a Tequila Daisy sweetened with orgeat, it reminded me of a streamlined Trader Vic's Pinky Gonzalez or perhaps my Silver Surfer. My later sleuthing determined that Giuseppe created this at Dutch Kills circa 2009, and the recipe in Sam Ross' app includes 3 drops of orange blossom water in the mix. Moreover, the drink name is another tribute to Pedro Infante, the singer-actor from the golden age of Mexican cinema, which Misty Kalkofen honored in her A Slow Dance with Pedro Infante.
The Infante greeted the nose with an earthy, nutty, and vegetal agave bouquet. Next, a creamy lime sip sang out before an agave melding into earthy almond swallow.