MxMo: Chalet & Golden Bough

After being somewhat delinquent last month, it’s Mixology Monday time again! This month’s theme is all about “shims” - low alcohol drinks - from Dinah over at Bibulous. Normally we’re a little leery of low-alcohol anything, but we figured we’d give it a go. Read on to find out why we stopped worrying and learned to love the shim. ;)

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Posted in angostura bitters, calvados, celery bitters, dry vermouth, gin, lime juice, Mixology Monday, orange bitters, sweet vermouth | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Sweetness

sweetenersWe recently picked up Dave Arnolds new book Liquid Intelligence. If you’re looking for some serious Booze Nerdery, this is the book for you. We’re pretty sure this is the only cocktail book with equations in it. ;) So it’s right up our alley. One of the many things that caught our eye was the interesting section he had about sweetness. It discusses how different sweeteners are made up of different sugars, and how the these sugars react differently to temperature and can change the perception of sweetness in a drink. So we decided to make a drink using several different sweeteners and see how each sweetener changes the drink profile. Read on to find out what we discovered.

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Posted in agave syrup, honey, lemon juice, maple syrup, vodka | Leave a comment

3 Howls Hopped Whiskey Three Ways

lucretia-closeWe were recently contacted by the 3 Howls folks about creating three original cocktails with one of their spirits. Given that we are big fans of theirs and already own several of their products, we said sure! We always love a challenge. The trick was to decide which one of their spirits we wanted to use as the base. We find their hopped whiskey to be very interesting and unique, so we decided to use that as our starting point. Read on to find out what we came up with.

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Posted in amaretto, angostura bitters, fernet, honey, hopped whiskey, lemon bitters, lillet blanc, lime juice, orange bitters, orange juice, Original Cocktail, tarragon tincture | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Shandies

draughtsman-closeWe recently received some samples of Innis & Gunn barrel aged beer from Scotland (see our samples policy to understand what it means that we’re posting about them). Since we now had some beer to play with, we decided to experiment with shandies. A shandy is a cocktail created from beer mixed with another beverage. Normally they are considered a drink for warmer weather, but we decided to see if we could come up with some more robust drinks appropriate for the season.

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Posted in angostura bitters, barrel aged beer, gold rum, lime juice, rye, saffron simple syrup, sparkling wine, vodka | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Smoke Signals

your-charming-cousinWe’re well into indian summer here, with warm days and cool nights. The leaves are coming down, and at least in the more rural areas the fragrance of burning leaves (delightful!) is ubiquitous. With that scent in mind, we thought we’d make a few cocktails using smoky spirits and flavors. These can be harder to put together into a balanced whole, but we were willing to make the effort ;)

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Posted in amaro montenegro, amontillado sherry, angostura bitters, coffee liqueur, gin, grapefruit liqueur, lemon bitters, mezcal, oloroso sherry, ramazzotti amaro, scotch | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Maple Cocktails

maple-old-fashioned-closeWe’ve had a lovely warm October so far here in the Seattle area, but it is nonetheless getting autumnal out, with chilly nights and sudden rain showers. And there are few flavors that speak more of fall than sweet, rich, earthy maple. So we’ve spent a leisurely afternoon tasting various spirits with maple syrup and seeing what rings our bells, and lo, a couple of cocktails have come out of that. We found that it’s better to keep things pretty simple to let the maple flavor shine through, and aged spirits definitely pair better. Read on for two new cool-evening, fire-side-sitting, novel-reading type drinks to add to the repertoire.

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Posted in apple brandy, boker's bitters, canadian whiskey, irish whiskey, maple bitters, maple syrup | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Happy Leif Erikson Day!

vinland-closeOctober 9th is Leif Erikson day, and despite the fact that neither of us are of Scandinavian heritage, we nonetheless feel obliged to acknowledge it. You have to admire someone who would take a handful of men in what would now be considered a small boat and cross an ocean, not even knowing if there was any land awaiting them there.

To honor his achievements, we pulled out a few bottles of aquavit and architected a couple of drinks. Most likely, Leif and company didn’t drink aquavit or anything like it, but it is the quintessential Scandinavian spirit these days, and we didn’t have time to brew mead ;) We like to think he would approve.

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Posted in aquavit, averna, curacao, lemon juice, punt e mes | Tagged , | Leave a comment

An American Whiskey that Begins with a B

o-pioneer-closeIt’s September, and it is Bourbon Heritage Month again. We’re big fans, so we thought we’d do our patriotic duty and drink some bourbon.

Bourbon actually has a fair range of styles and flavors these days, especially given the craft products that are now on the market. While the mash bill and making must meet strict criteria in order to be bourbon, there are still many things that the distiller can choose to vary that will make the spirit distinct. To celebrate this variety, we decided to pull four quite different bottles out of the liquor cabinet (out of the many :)) and see what they had to offer. Read on to see which bourbons we chose.

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Posted in bourbon, cherry liqueur, lemon juice, Original Cocktail, peychauds bitters, Tasting Notes | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

MxMo: Around the Block & First Frost

It’s time again for Mixology Monday. This month’s theme comes from Chris over at A Bar Above, one of our favorite professional bartender blogs. The theme this month is Unknown, where one of the options was to use an ingredient you’ve never used before. As if we ever need an excuse to add some new item to the bar. :D Of course that does mean it takes us a while to find something new. Read on to see what we picked.

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Posted in aged rum, blackberry liqueur, creole shrubb, Mixology Monday, Original Cocktail, peychauds bitters, st. germain, suze, vodka | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Timing

robert-burns-closeThis week we investigate the effect of temperature and oxidation on cocktails. We had noticed that some cocktails seem to change in flavor, often for the better, after sitting a short while (on those rare occasions where we don’t just gulp them down ;)). We were curious as to whether this was due to the drink warming up, oxidizing, or both. So we went back to our notes to find a couple of drinks where we had noted this phenomenon, and started our experiment. Read on to see what we found.

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Posted in absinte, Cocktail Comparisons, Cointreau, Deconstructed, fernet, lime juice, scotch, sweet vermouth, Tasting Notes, Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment