Thursday, September 25, 2008

trilby (variation)

2 oz Old Tom Gin
1 oz Sweet Vermouth
1 cube Sugar
1 dash Orange Bitters
1 dash Aromatic Bitters
Flamed Orange Peel
1 tsp floater of Creme de Violette

Muddle the bitters with the sugar cube. Add the gin, vermouth, and ice, and stir. Strain into a cocktail glass. Flame and squeeze an orange peel over the cocktail and add a floater of creme de violette (looked like about a teaspoon or so dashed out).

Last night, Andrea wanted to go to Deep Ellum after reading this DrinkBoston blog post about how Eric Seed of Haus Alpenz was going to be there showcasing some of his new line including Hayman's Old Tom Gin and Dolin Vermouths. The Old Tom Gin was rather exciting since this was a defunct ingredient brought back from the recipe vaults from a member of the family that started the Beefeater line. The Dolin line is interesting in that it is the last independent company producing Vermouth de Chambery whereas the others have been bought up by large corporations, and their style of production is in keeping with the old ways of herb maceration instead of prepared infusions.

Eric let us taste the Old Tom gin and Dolin sweet and dry vermouths while apologizing that his blanco vermouth bottle was emptied at his stop in New York city the day before (which must be a good sign!). The Old Tom was very much like a Jonge Genever in the malty full-mouth feel; however, it had a greater focus on botanicals than a Jonge Genever does (I am basing my comparison on the Boomsma). A little more sweetened than a dry gin but not all that much so. The Dolin vermouths were rather tasty. The dry was great on its own but might be lost when mixed in some cocktail recipes since the wine and botanicals were rather light tasting. The sweet vermouth seemed more robust while still not being overly aggressive. We also got to taste a dash or two of Amargo Chuncho, a Peruvian bitters that Eric is planning on or hoping to distribute. The Amargo Chuncho made its way into a Pisco Sour that Max Toste mixed up for the group. Max also made a Tom Collins and a Ramos Gin Fizz showcasing the Old Tom, a Hesitation Cocktail with Haus Alpenz's Batavia Arrack, and the Trilby variation.

A standard Trilby is rye (or bourbon), sweet vermouth, and orange bitters, whereas CocktailDB includes the variation as 1 1/4 oz Old Tom Gin, 1 oz sweet vermouth, 2 dashes orange bitters, and a float of Creme Yvette. Max's drink listed at the top of the entry used the Hayman's Old Tom Gin and Dolan Sweet Vermouth. His house-made bitters and the addition of the flamed orange peel put his signature on this recipe. The Old Tom and this particular vermouth worked rather splendidly in this classic recipe. I wonder how it would taste in a Martinez... Overall, it's rather exciting to see these products being produced again and/or being distributed stateside. One by one these defunct ingredients from the days of yore are returning.

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