Thanks to New Orleans, a city know for the debauchery that is Mardi Gras and its amazing cocktail scene, we have yet another rendition of the classic planters punch. This time, we throw rum aside for some good ol’ american bourbon and a bit of french brandy. Although it differs considerably from the original punch recipe, this Mississippi Planter’s Punch is a wonderful chance to explore a tiki cocktail with an old school New Orleans twist.
The sidecar is one of the great classic brandy cocktails. And like many old cocktails, while it’s origins are mysterious, there are plenty of stories. By most accounts the sidecar was created slightly after World War I by George Smyth near London, likely in Claridges or Savoy. However there is another account, which I would rather believe. This renditions tells that the cocktail is in fact the invention of an American army captain. This captained was stationed in Paris during WWI and ordered this cocktail so often that it was named after his primary mode of transportation: a motorcycle sidecar. No matter when this drink was created, it is a lovely brandy cocktail (traditionally made with cognac) that is just as good today as it was during the great war. Sidecar 1½ ounces Brandy ¾ ounce Orange Liqueur ¾ ounce lemon juice garnish with an orange quarter or lemon twist Learn More
Tonight marks the celebration of the best 2013 had to offer in terms of film and television: the 71st Golden Globes! Unlike the formality of the Oscars, the Golden Globes is a boisterous party filled with drunken actors, producers, directors, and other cast members. So what type of drinks are good for the occasion? How about continuing what we left off on New Years and keep on mixing spirits with bubbly in these two great cocktails! The Negroni Sbagliato 1 oz Campari 1 oz Sweet Red Vermouth 1 oz Sparkling Wine (optional) garnish with an orange wheel Fill a rocks glass with ice and pour in the Campari, vermouth and sparkling wine. Gently stir until mixed. Garnish with an orange wheel and serve. The name of this drink translates from the Italian to “the bungled negroni” and it gets its name from substituting the sparkling wine in for the original Learn More
It’s National Hot Toddy Day! But actually, look it up, it’s a thing. The hot toddy is a wonderfully versatile hot drink which can be served with almost every imaginable booze and hot drink combination. To get our footing, the following is a great simple recipe for the hot toddy on which many variations can be made to taste. The Basic Hot Toddy 2 oz Spirit 0.5 oz honey 6 oz hot water Mix all ingredients in a mug and stir with a cocktail spoon until the honey has fully dissolved. Garnish with whatever you like – I love to garnish the basic hot toddy with a small mint sprig or citrus wheel. Hot toddies were developed sometime in the early 18th century in Scotland. While no one remembers exactly why it was created, historians believe that the recipe was designed to make the taste of scotch whisky more palatable, Learn More
New Year’s Eve is one of the most popular drinking holidays and as such it lends itself perfectly to cocktail parties. Last post we discussed the Old Cuban and in this post we are going to add another high caliber drink to your arsenal, the French 75! The French 75 2 ounces London dry gin 1 teaspoon superfine sugar 1/2 ounce lemon juice 5 ounces Brut champagne or other sparkling wine garnish with a lemon twist Place a generous portion of ice inside a shaker and then add the first three ingredients. Shake hard and shake long, because it takes a bit of time for the sugar to fully dissolve in the cocktail. Once chilled and mixed, strain the the cocktail into a collins glass with ice and top off with the champagne. Garnish with an elegant lemon twist. In the simplest terms, it is a Tom Collins with sparkling wine instead of soda Learn More
Winter is cominghere! As snow fell on the northeastern states this weekend, cocktails made with ice seemed less attractive. It is the time of year for warm drinks like tea, coffee, hot chocolate, egg nog, and of course apple cider. Apple cider combines amazingly well with almost any spirit or wine, and there is nothing like a nice warm spiked drink on a freezing snowy day. There are wide variety of great recipes involving hot cider, and these are a couple of my favorites (in no particular order). 1) The Orchard Boulevardier This great drink is a delicious, season appropriate nod to the classic boulevardier cocktail. The strength of the rye and the bitter-sweetness of the Campari blend well with the sweet vermouth and tart sweetness of the hot cider to make an amazing drink. Old Overholt or Bulleit Rye work quite well in this drink and Dolin is my go Learn More
There are few things quite as frustrating as finding a great cocktail recipe only to realize that you don’t have all of the ingredients to make it. Or that some of the ingredients are so expensive that you will never be able to justify stocking them in your bar. Lucky for you, many cocktails will not suffer from some substitution if you don’t have an ingredient. Like many aspects of mixology, experimenting is key after you know the basics. Basic Cocktail Ingredient Substitutions If you don’t have Cointreau, try: another orange liqueur triple sec curacao Grand Marnier Combier cherry liqueur pomegranate liqueur a floral liqueur such as St.-Germain Elderflower Liqueur a spicy liqueur such as Domaine de Canton Ginger Liqueur If you don’t have maraschino, try: other cherry liqueurs Cherry Moonshine triple sec a floral liqueur such as St.-Germain Elderflower Liqueur a spicy liqueur such as Domaine de Canton Ginger Learn More