Archive for the ‘Infusions & experiments’ Category

Chrysanthemum and Puer Tea Infused Pisco

Thursday, March 27th, 2008


Following up on my earlier experiment infusing Oolong tea in gin, I decided to do another Chinese tea inspired infusion. This time round I wanted to use a tea blend called Jupu (??), which is simply a mix of chrysanthemum flowers (??) and a black tea called Puer (???). (more…)

Making Quality Grenadine

Tuesday, March 18th, 2008



Grenadine syrup is an awkward ingredient. There are interesting drinks that call for quite large doses of the stuff, yet mixing up one of these in the average bar is likely to result in the grenadine being the nastiest single ingredient in the mix. Who wants to adulterate quality spirits with a vaguely fruity, artificial version of what was once a natural pomegranate syrup? (more…)

The Immigrant’s Breakfast: being an unconventional St. Patrick’s Day cocktail

Sunday, March 16th, 2008


With a name like Seamus, I felt obliged to come up with something to mark St. Patrick’s Day. Thus, in a moment of inspiration, I reached for the Crème de Menthe, Chartreuse and Midori, then got busy carving a clover out of a lime shell. The world was about to be introduced to the Leprechaun’s Abortion.


Don’t worry. . . I realize the world does not need another drink whose only distinguishing feature, besides tasting awful, is being green. (more…)


Friday, March 14th, 2008

Falernum is a spiced syrup with a rum base used as a sweetener in certain tropical drinks. The precise origins of falernum are a little murky. Supposedly it originally hails from Barbados.

It is certainly relatively common in Barbados, being drunk in classic local drink the Corn’n'Oil (rum, falernum, Angostura Bitters, and a squeeze of lime). The Corn’n'Oil shows how versatile and easy to use Falernum is. You can simply splash it into rum to enhance the rum, or it can be used to create a more elaborate concoction like the Don the Beachcomber Mai Tai. It is sort of like a mildly alcoholic tropical version of sweet-and-sour mix.


So far I have relied on making falernum myself. (more…)

Making Pimento Dram

Thursday, March 13th, 2008

This is just a little record for myself and anyone else who is interested, covering my Pimento Dram making experiments. For those who don’t know, Pimento Dram is an allspice flavored liqueur with a rum base from Jamaica. I have had two attempts at making Pimento Dram, the first not very successful and the second quite successful. (more…)

Oolong Tea Infused Gin: The Fort Zeelandia Cocktail

Friday, February 29th, 2008


I decided to give infusing gin with tea a try. I started by making the Earl Grey Martini as written up by Gary Regan in the San Francisco Chronicle. Earl Grey is possibly my least favorite tea. I don’t hate the stuff exactly. Oil of bergamont is an interesting flavor. Unfortunately, that taste just doesn’t work for me in tea. (more…)

The Wonders of Gum Syrup (Gomme Syrup)

Saturday, December 22nd, 2007

I mentioned gum syrup (also known by its French name of gomme syrup) in my post on the Pisco Punch. You see gomme syrup called for a fair bit in older cocktail recipes, and people will generally tell you to substitute simple syrup. Simple syrup is an acceptable substitute for gum syrup, but despite what people may say it is not one and the same. While you certainly can substitute simple syrup for gum syrup, if you want to drink certain old style drinks they way they were intended to be drunk you probably need to make yourself some real gum syrup. (more…)

Pisco Punch

Monday, December 3rd, 2007


The theme for this month’s Mixology Monday is Repeal Day, and Pre-prohibition drinks are thus in order. Pisco is flavor of the month at my place since I managed to pick up three different brands of the stuff. That makes the Pisco Punch the obvious choice for this month’s drink.

I mentioned Pisco Punch the last time I wrote here. The problem with Pisco Punch, and it is quite a problem, is that the original recipe seems to have been lost. Certain things about the drink are known with certainty though. (more…)