Saturday, October 22, 2011

the morning delight

The theme for this month's Mixology Monday (MxMo LXII) was picked by Kevin Gray of the Cocktail Enthusiast blog. The theme he chose was "Morning Drinks," and he provided the rationale of, "Breakfast cocktails were the norm in the nineteenth century, when cocktails were a common beginning to one's day. The drink's purpose was to help the imbiber recover from the past night's indiscretions and to steel their resolve for the coming day." And what better way to delve into the topic than browsing through my 19th century drink books?

The tome that yielded the most tempting recipe was William Schmidt's The Flowing Bowl. There, the Morning Delight stood out as an obvious choice by the name alone. Upon further inspection, the drink shared a lot of similarities with the Morning Glory Fizz. Both contain an egg white to fortify, absinthe to settle the stomach, citrus to replenish vitamins, whiskey to provide some hair of the dog, and soda water to lighten the load and make the medicine go down easier.
Two extra ingredients in the Morning Delight are sherry and calisaya. Calisaya is a class of quinine-forward liqueur or digestive bitters that are made in Spain and Italy. While little European product finds its way over to the United States, a liqueur maker in Oregon has recently begun making their own artisanal Calisaya Liqueur. Unfortunately, the product is only available in that region, but with the tasting notes of "fresh spices, effervescent citrus and bitter orange gently subside to scents of warm woods and sap laced in light caramel," I decided that in a pinch Amer Picon would make a great substitute especially when only two dashes were called for. Ramazzotti or other amaros would probably also work as a substitute here.
The Morning Delight
• 1 Egg White
• Juice of 1 Lime (3/4 oz)
• Juice of 1/2 Orange (3/4 oz)
• 1 spoon Sugar (1/4 oz Florida Crystals)
• 1/2 pony Absinthe (1/2 oz Kübler)
• 1 pony Whiskey (1 oz Bulleit Bourbon)
• 1/2 pony Sherry (1/2 oz Lustau East India Solera)
• 2 dash Calisaya (1/4 oz Amer Picon)
Stir citrus with sugar until sugar is dissolved. Add rest of ingredients and dry shake. Add ice and shake again. Strain into a Fizz glass, top with soda water (2-3 oz), stir, and add a straw.
First off, I have to admit that I made a pair of these at night and did not try to evaluate them as a morning drink proper. It seems slightly disingenuous, but it fit into my schedule better. The Fizz started out with an anise aroma from the absinthe. The sip was rather gentle and contained sherry and lime flavors with a hint of the absinthe, and the swallow showcased the absinthe a little better along with the whiskey flavors. Originally, I was afraid that the absinthe was going to dominate the drink in an unpleasant way; however, it was not overpowering. Indeed, the drink was light and smooth from the soda water, egg white, and orange juice, and I could definitely see drinking this in the morning as we have done with Ramos Gin Fizzes.

So cheers to Kevin for being the alarm clock for this month's Mixology Monday and to Paul Clarke for keeping the neighborhood kids quiet until noon for this fine event series!


MikeDiesel said...

This sounds like a good morning after drink before going out to the golf course.
Mike Diesel

frederic said...

The golf part would suggest that the whiskey be interpreted as Scotch though...

TVM said...

Great find with this Frederic, yet another one for me to try with Amer Picon