Today we get our first taste of fall (although the start of the season is still a few weeks off). The apple swizzle highlights a new ingredient in my bar “apple brandy.” Now my recipe for this drink calls for an iced highball glass, although given the small size of the drink I feel anything bigger than a lowball or tumbler will make the drink seem silly and out of place a bit. The drink is characterized by a tan color and smells mildly of apples, but leans closer to a bourbon smell (this could be use of the applejack as it is made primarily with neutral grain spirits). The drink starts on a mild sweet then moves the a slight rum and bitters burn. The apple brandy comes through in a lingering aftertaste which makes you go back for more. If you have some apple brandy around or are thinking of picking some up this season, you may want to give this one a try. Just be sure to go easy on the bitters (or be wise about which ones you use). This is one drink where they can be overpowering. I do wonder how different this drink would be with some cherry bitters to liven up the harvest.
1/2 oz Apple Brandy
1 oz Light Rum
3/4 oz Lime Juice
2-4 Dashes of Aromatic Bitters
1 Teaspoon SugarLime Slice
Straight build over ice in a tumbler. Stir well and garnish with a lime slice.
Today I bring you one of the best drinks I’ve had since the ” ‘57 T-Bird with Arizona Plates.” The Tidal Wave has great presentation and a very inviting coconut and almond aroma. It starts tropical and sweet, moves to a stronger coconut kick, then finishes with a more alcohol amaretto and sour bite. It’s not often you get such a great mixing of flavors across your palette, but this drink delivers in every respect. On my next menu revision I’ll be doing a section of “seasonal favorites” and this is sure to make the list!
Alcohol Taste Rating: 4.5/10
Overall Rating: 9/10
1 1/2 oz Coconut Rum
1 oz Blue Curacao
3/4 oz Lime Juice
1/2 oz Amaretto
1 tablespoon Coconut Cream
1 teaspoon Sugar (Superfine if you have it)
(Additional Garnish: Small Orchid if available)
Shake all liquid ingredients with the sugar with ice. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish by floating a lime slice on top.
Is the name a little cheesy? Yes, but don’t blame me this time (it’s not an original).
The Midorable is a radiant green cocktail with a slight foam on top so it doesn’t require a garnish. It has a mild melon aroma which is very inviting. The flavor begins with a little banana, moves it’s way to the melon, and the finishes just a little sour. A sweeter variation might be worth a try (replace lime juice with simple syrup).
Alcohol Rating: 6.5-7/10
Overall Rating: 7.5/10 (could use 1/4 more of each ingredient to fill glass, the sour isn’t for everyone)
Make it Again? Yes. Possible Menu item
1 oz Midori
3/4 oz Banana Liqueur (For less bite use Creme de Banana)
1/2 oz Lime Juice
1 oz Sweet/Sour
Shake and Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
“Not very cute, but it is Midorable”
Today’s late night cocktail is a mildly aromatic and powerful drink. The Vodka Grand is bold both in appearance and taste. Strong and mildly sour you get a semi-sweet citrus start, then to a mid-range Grand Marnier on your main palette, finalized by the familiar sting of vodka. This drink is certainly a slow sipper, with a flavorful bite. Don’t take it lightly, but instead enjoy it’s tasty elegance.
Alcohol Taste Rating: 8.5/10
Overall Rating: 7.5-8/10
Make it again? Yes (It’s good enough to recommend, but not good enough for the menu)
1.5 oz Vodka
1/2 oz Grand Marnier
1/2 oz Rose’s Lime Juice
1/4 oz Lime Juice
Stir and Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish by floating an orange slice in the drink.
Coming in pretty late this evening with the “Ballet Russe.” A Vodka and Creme de Cassis based cocktail with a sour tart flavor and a dark and mysterious color. The citrus juices create a foam when shaken that decorates the top of the drink, and smells slightly of sweet/sour mix.
A tart berry taste quickly moves to a sour and bitter finish as the taste of black currents rolls through your palette. Very few drinks I’ve found use any more than 1/2 an ounce of the stuff, but the citrus juices and syrup round this drink out well. I believe this drink could easily be remixed with other flavors such as raspberry, mint, or coconut (rum).
Alcohol Rating: 5-6/10
Overall Rating: 7.5/10
Make it Again? Yes, possible menu option
1 oz Vodka
3/4 oz Creme de Cassis
1 1/2 oz Lime Juice
1/2 oz Lemon Juice
1 oz Simple Syrup
Shake and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
“Wait, why am I tasting cranberries?”
Today I’m highlighting one of my current favorites. The “Cold Fusion” is a delightful sweet, sour, and melon flavored drink with a great all around taste and feel. Built on the core lemon and Midori base, it’s aroma and taste are equally of both ingredients. The drink starts sweet and goes to a mild sour as it hits the back of your mouth. Midori takes center stage, but thanks to the sweet/sour and lemon it doesn’t overpower the drink. The colorful green makes this somewhere between a late spring and early summer drink, and certainly warrants a place on my permanent menu.
Overall Rating: 9.5/10
Alcohol Rating: 2-3/10
Make it again? Yes! (Menu item!)
¾ oz Vodka
¾ oz Midori
½ oz Triple Sec
½ oz Rose’s Lime Juice
½ oz Fresh Lemon Juice
1 ½ oz sweet ‘n’ sour
Lime Wedge Garnish
Shake and Strain, pour to an iced pint glass
Cold and Crazy!
The Habana Libre is a overpowered version of the Cuba Libre that just isn’t quite there in terms of taste. Glassware may vary for this drink and after making it with a pint glass I can easily say that a tumbler would have been much better. Using the pint, the coke overpowered the drink and really you are left with drinking a bit of fizzy 151.
Alcohol Rating: 8-9 First Half of the Drink. 5-6 Second half.
Overall Rating: 3-4
1 1/2 oz Light Rum
1/2 oz Lime Juice
1/4 oz Grenadine
Top with Coca-Cola
Float 1/2 oz Bacardi 151
Straight Build in a Tumbler Glass (Not a Pint!)
Not as good as it looks.