To assist my anticipatory salivation ahead of Anistatia Miller and Jared Brown’s Tales of the Cocktail presentation on “The Cafes of Paris”, I have been taking a look at a few lesser known French aperitifs. Several weeks ago I took a look at Pineau des Charentes. Today I focus on a pair of fruit quinquinas.
Archive for the ‘maraschino’ Category
I said I would follow up my recent Genever post with a post on Genever cocktails. Here are five recipes for traditional Genever cocktails. These are all drinks you could have ordered in an upscale bar in the Nineteenth Century United States. In other words, these are the drinks that got gin cocktails started. The recipes come from Jerry Thomas’ Bartender’s Guide. Darcy O’Neil from the Art of Drink kindly put the entire book online, accessible here.
I finally tracked down a bottle of crème de violette in Auckland today*. This ingredient has been eluding me for a long time now. Some years ago I sampled the Benoit Serres version in Shanghai. It was never actually sold there, but Mr. Benoit Serres attended a Shanghai food and wine show seeking an importer and I was able to sample the stuff and have a chat with him. Besides his crème de violette he also makes a couple of interesting herbal and nut infused liqueurs – I seem to remember an unusual almond infused cognac.
Today I came across a crème de violette from Briottet. The Briottet version seems fuller flavored then how I remember the Benoit Serres. The Benoit Serres had a subtle (i.e. diluted) cognac base with a violet overlay, and may have been relatively high proof (25%?). The Briottet seems more like intense violet on a base of lowish proof (18%) neutral alcohol. It has a strong aroma, happily more reminiscent of a flower shop (or maybe potpourri) than a soap factory. On tasting you get a rich, smooth, fairly deep violet taste that lingers on the tongue. The finish is really quite long, and somehow never turns to soap. While I cannot taste anything besides violet, I still would not call the taste one dimensional.
I am hardly a crème de violette expert. I have only ever tasted two brands, and those several years apart. I may completely wrong about this comparison. Both Briottet and Benoit Serres seem to be good products. However, I think Briottet may pack a little more power and be more suited to mixed drinks. Most drinks using creme de violette require only small quantities, so you want to use a reasonably intense product.
After tasting some of the liqueur straight the obvious thing to do was to make an original recipe Aviation. (more…)
Having tried passion fruit with pisco, my next experiment was to try it with rum. Ed Hamilton mentioned that one of his favorite drinks was rhum agricole, mixed with passion fruit, lime and a little cane syrup. So rhum agricole was my starting point. . .
My initial round of experimentation with passion fruit showed how aromatic it is. Therefore I decided to partner it with pisco, an aromatic spirit. The obvious starting point was the pisco sour.
The theme for this month’s Mixology Monday (hosted at Sloshed) is brandy. I’ve been taking a bit of a look at pisco recently (check posts here, here, here, here and especially here), so brace yourselves for some more pisco brandy.
Some weeks back I made a dead simple and intuitive pisco drink, (more…)
Ernest Hemingway, endurance drinker, greets Fidel Castro, endurance orator
Auckland is suffering in the grip of a pressing lime shortage. Unrest has been quelled so far through the imposition of martial law (Batista will be smiling in his grave), but nobody knows how long the authorities can maintain even this crude semblance of order. OK, I may be exaggerating slightly. Everything is surprisingly normal considering that there have been no limes in the supermarkets since before Christmas. This means I can’t enjoy a Daiquiri despite the summery weather. The good thing though is that I’ve been meaning to write about the Daiquiri for a while, so with Daiquiris on my mind but none to be had I may as well get writing. (more…)
I had the remains of a pineapple in the fridge that needed to be put to use. I didn’t feel like a Singapore Sling or a Park Avenue, the two drinks I normally associate with pineapple juice, so I decided to search online for something with pineapple juice and Cuban rum. The Mary Pickford (and the almost identical Cuban Cocktail Variation) stood out because of their use of maraschino in addition to the juice and rum. Maraschino tends to make drinks interesting and I already knew it went well with Cuban rum in the Hemmingway Daiquiri.
The drink tasted good. The rum sits up front, but the pineapple juice makes it slide down smoothly while the maraschino adds interest. The grenadine lends the drink an attractive pink hue.
1 1/2 oz Cuban rum (I used Havana Club 3 Anos)
1 oz pineapple juice
1/8 oz maraschino
1/8 oz grenadine
Stir over ice and strain into a cocktail glass.