Tuesday, February 24, 2009

[love machine]

2 1/4 oz Chateau du Busca 15 Year Armagnac
1/2 oz Rothman & Winter Orchard Apricot
1/4 oz Cynar

Stir w/ice and strain into a small cocktail glass.

This past Sunday (2/22) marked our return to Drink for Sweatband Sunday! Or should I say "Sweat-Tea" Sunday? For my first drink, I named tequila as my chosen base spirit. Misty nodded sagely, and brought out a simple syrup made with Wu-Wei tea (technically a tisane, but Sweat-Tisane Sunday doesn't really roll off the tongue). Wu-Wei tea is a blend of hibiscus, cloves, lavender, orange peel, sweetleaf and lemon balm. Accordingly, the simple syrup and the drink itself were tinted a lovely rose-red color. To this she'd added maraschino liqueur and lemon juice. The result was light and floral and so deliciously drinkable that I finished it before Fred had finished even half of his first drink.

Shortly before I finished my drink, John G. spotted us and Fred brought out a bottle of his new "Smoking Ban Bitters." Upon opening the bottle, John stated that it smelled like MEN. I decided that this portion of the night would be all about MEN. I ordered the steak tartar, and told John that I wanted a scotch-based cocktail. When asked whether I wanted light or intense, I chose *intense*. John returned with a thin-walled, beautifully etched old fashioned glass filled with a big chunk of hand-carved ice (I teased him that the delicate glass marred the manly effect of my food and beverage choices). Into this he poured a scotch old fashioned bittered with Liquid MEN (wait, that doesn't really sound right now, does it?). The scotch he chose was the funky White Horse, a Lagavulin-heavy blend. I was surprised at how light it tasted to me.

Misty had been in control of the bar's iPod for the evening, and she had chosen a Motown-heavy playlist. Jackson 5 was playing as I sipped the last of my scotch old fashioned, and we'd moved from the 60's on into the 70's. I don't remember ordering a third cocktail, but Misty had decided to bring out the Armagnac and the Cynar when I lamented that my desire for intensity remained unsated. The nose of the drink was raisin, the taste very ripe fruit, with the Cynar coming through on the finish. The Orchard Apricot added just the right amount of tangy sweetness. This nicely satisfied my desire for intensity. Aw yeah.

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