Saturday, May 31, 2014

Kiwiberry sidecar

Kiwiberry Sidecar

1 3/4 oz kiwiberry infused brandy
3/4 oz cointreau
1/2 oz lemon juice

Combine all ingredients in a shaker tin and shake with ice. Strain into a coupe. Sugared rim is optional and even less necessary than a traditional sidecar.

This is so good! It has a really mysterious tropical flavor from the combined lemon/orange/kiwiberry profile. It tastes like passionfruit or some fruit you've never tried but would come from an island.

I have a big kiwiberry vine growing at my parents house. It takes over a fence every couple years and needs to be hacked back. Last year I made some jam from them and infused some brandy with them as well. The main thing we like to drink with brandy is the sidecar so this made sense to try. Sidecars are a classic sour, made much like a margarita, with ingredients varying slightly between recipes. I usually make them 3:2:1 but for this infused version I bump the brandy a little more to increase the kiwi flavor.


3 oz Kombucha
1 oz blackberry shrub
1/2 oz lemon

This doesn't have a name and its only sort of a recipe, more of a suggested guideline perhaps. The proportions really depend on the flavor and intensity of your ingredients. Over the winter I've been brewing kombucha until its super sour then cutting it with sweeter fruit juice or ginger beer or anything else I can find. On this occasion, I took some kombucha before it was fully fermented, so it was sour but also still sweet. I made a shrub over the winter with some random cheap out of season berries. I don't know what recipe I used or if I messed it up, but it is also sweet and sour. Shrubs should be but this one is really sweet with a hint of tartness. So this recipe works really well for the ingredients I had but may not be reproducible. 

Kombucha in mocktails works very well because it is so intensely flavored. It has the oomph that a soda or fruit juice is lacking. I've been using club soda to stretch out the flavors if I use other intense ingredients like lemon or lime. I'll also use sparkling wine if its for someone that drinks alcohol but doesnt want a big drink.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Gold Rush Cocktail

Gold Rush Cocktail

2oz bourbon
3/4oz honey syrup*
1/2oz lemon juice

Pour all ingredients into a shaker tin. Add ice, shake and strain into a coupe or a rocks glass with a big cube. No garnish.

{*to  make honey syrup, use 2 parts honey to 1 part water and stir or shake in a sealed jar until dissolved}

This is a really delicious drink. It is sweet and tangy but still boozy, especially if you use 100 proof bourbon, which you should.

Surprisingly, it was only invented recently. It is one ingredient swap away from several classics like the bee's knees and brown derby but somehow no one ever came up with honey, lemon and bourbon, or at least never wrote it down. Sam Ross created this at Milk & Honey in Manhattan in the past ten years or so.  I don't know which he made first but it's also like a simplified penicillin cocktail.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

North & South

I missed this months mixology monday but I made a maple pecan old fashioned. I had infused pecans in bourbon after seeing a post about it awhile ago on the Post Prohibition Blog. This was the best thing I've made with it so far.

maple pecan old fashionedNorth & South Cocktail

2oz pecan infused bourbon
1/2oz maple syrup (2:1)
Angostura bitters
Maple bitters
Whiskey infused pecans for garnish
Lemon peel for garnish

Stir with ice. Strain into an old fashioned glass with a big rock. Wipe the peel around the rim and toss it in.

I love this. Neither flavor overpowers the drink. It is still very spirit forward even with the maple. I even bump up the maple flavor a bit with maple bitters (but only because I happen to have them, they are not as crucial as angostura) The pecan garnish is also incidental. I still had some left in the fridge so I used them to add more pecan aroma. They were still soft from being full of booze, so they skewered easily. The lemon peel brightens the heavy whiskey and sweet maple flavors and should definitely be used.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014


This drink is a new classic. It was created a few years ago by Sam Ross at Milk and Honey in Manhattan and since then has appeared at better bars across the country.  It makes sense because it's delicious. It has a  certain medicinal quality from the smoky scotch and lemon but also its good for what ails you with the ginger and honey combo. Highly recommended.


1 3/4 oz blended scotch
3/4 oz lemon juice
1/2 oz ginger liquer
1/2 oz honey syrup
1/4 oz smokey single malt scotch

Shake everything but the single malt with ice and strain into an old fashioned glass with big ice. Float the single malt and garnish with a lemon wheel. Proportions from Mr Boston's.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Mixology Monday: Preserves

This months Mixology Monday theme is preserves and can include anything that has been preserved not just jams and stuff. I had so many ideas but I've been working a lot this week and didn't get to try most of them. Perhaps I'll try to do more experiments and update this post throughout the week. This month is being hosted by Craig at A World of Drinks. I am posting this super late after work and hope he still includes me, we'll see....

I have several jams, a couple shrubs, some syrups and dried herbs that all wanted to be used in a drink this month but I decided to go with raspberry syrup. It's a classic cocktail ingredient that is rarely used these days. The traditional way to make it would be to make a simple syrup and put some raspberries in it, wait a couple days and then strain the fruit out. My parents have a big raspberry patch and they make jelly every year. My dad gave me some jelly that didn't set up properly. The pectin didn't work and it never jelled. So it is syrup. Useless for toast but perfect for cocktails. It is made from sugar, raspberry juice and (worthless) pectin.

Bramble in the Rye

2 1/2 oz Rye whiskey
1/4 oz Benedictine
2 barspoons Raspberry syrup
2 dashes Angostura bitters
1 dash Orange bitters

Stir with ice and strain into an old fashioned glass with a large rock.
Adjust to taste depending on the sweetness and the raspberriness of your syrup.

I really like this one. The rye gives it some weight and some spice, the benedictine brings some sweet herbal notes, the syrup brings a fruity sweetness and the bitters bring the bitter complexity. I've made it using less raspberry syrup and a little simple syrup but I cant decide which way I prefer it. Even with 2 barspoons of my raspberry syrup it isn't too sweet nor overwhelmingly fruity. The photo looks much more red than the real thing because it was backlit by a beautiful day.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Moscow Mule

The Moscow Mule is a classic highball made fancier by having its own special glass. So far I have always made them in collins glasses but I finally got some copper moscow mule mugs and made them up properly. The copper mug is able to hold temperatures better than glass, resulting in a colder cocktail for a longer time with less dilution. They are certainly delicious in any glass but these mugs are gonna be a game changer in the summer.
moscow mule copper mug So before we get into the simple recipe, a mule and a buck are the same thing. They are both highballs involving ginger ale/ beer. The gin buck is what I am most familiar with although I have heard of gin gin mule as well and I dont know why the are different. Perhaps they are not and buck is classic terminology and it got renamed after the popularity of moscow mules? That popularity began in LA in the 50's as a bit of marketing for the new on the scene russian vodkas. You don't really need a recipe for this, you can do it to taste. Keep in mind, you don't want too much soda because there will be some dilution from the ice and the whole point of naming it a mule is that its got some kick to it. Here's how I usually do it, with some citrus adjustment based on brand of ginger beer. (Reeds is way more citrusy and requires less):::::::::::::

Moscow Mule

2oz vodka
3oz ginger beer
1/2oz lime juice

Fill copper mug with ice. Add vodka and lime and stir. Top with ginger beer. Add more lime wedges to taste. Unless I've already squeezed a lot of lime juice, I usually just ream half a lime into the glass then throw in the entire half peel.

Tequila also makes a fine substitute at the same proportions....