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The PDT Cocktail Book

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#91 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 09:33 AM

In the interview Meehan refers to a Demarara Sugar rinse, but doesn't mention a sugar cube soaked in bitters.

One other thing I have to mention about the PDT book that frustrates me - The ingredient listings are often incomplete. In the recipe for the Jimmie Roosevelt, Champagne is not listed in the ingredients. I've noticed that this is fairly common with recipes that call for Champagne in the book, but there are other examples.

BTW, Frog Princess - I really enjoy your posts and excellent photos. Please keep up the great work.


Keith,

Thanks for the feedback, I really appreciate it!

Regarding the Jimmy Roosevelt recipe, it is true that the sugar cube is not mentioned in the interview. However I believe that both the rinse and the Angostura-soaked sugar cube are used at Pegu Club where Jim Meehan used to work (see Sam's description here). I am guessing that this is the version referenced in the interview, but I could be wrong.

I've noticed the same thing about the PDT cocktail book - the ingredient listings are incomplete and Champagne is not included with the other ingredients, only in the instructions. I had the pleasure of proof-reading the indexing entries for this book for Eat Your Books, and unless you read the instructions for each recipe, you can easily oversee a critical ingredient.

#92 Keith Orr

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 10:22 AM

Sam's description is crystal clear - they should have used that for the recipe in the book.

I'm hitting a local watering hole on Friday and one of the bartenders is an ex PDT employee - I'll have to ask him to mix me up a Jimmie Roosevelt.

#93 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 10:39 AM

This weekend I made the Airmail cocktail per the PDT specs using Banks rum. I had tried the Airmail before with Flor de Caña (see the Champagne thread here) and had been delighted by this drink. It was very light with subtle stone fruit undertones, a great interplay between the light rum and the Champagne. With the Banks rum (same brand of Champagne), the character of the drink changed completely. I used a slightly more assertive honey as well which worked well with the spice in the rum. In the end however, I felt that the drink was heavier and less charming with the Banks rum. The Banks rum is a departure from a typical white rum. Some people have compared it to a rhum agricole but I don't think that it has the characteristic intense grassy notes; for me the batavia arrack flavor in it is prevalent. I think that it could work well in some tiki drinks, especially the ones that already have a lot of spice. It seems like an unusual rum to specify in many recipes of the PDT cocktail book including the classic Daiquiri and its variations though. I will have to try it. I don't believe that this is disclosed in the book, but I read that Jim Meehan had been involved with the creation and promotion of Banks rum.

#94 Darcie B

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 05:44 PM

Got this book and David Wondrich's Imbibe last week and have been enjoying both of them immensely.

I've already made a Bee's Knees, Jack Rose (from Imbibe), and the latest was the Algonquin (Rittenhouse Bonded Rye, Dolin Dry Vermouth and pineapple juice). I had to substitute Bulleit Rye and Noilly Prat.

I'm definitely going to need to visit the liquor store soon with a fistful of dollars. Algonquin_low.jpg

Edited by Darcie B, 05 September 2012 - 05:46 PM.

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#95 janeer

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 08:13 PM

Got this book and David Wondrich's Imbibelast week and have been enjoying both of them immensely.

I'm definitely going to need to visit the liquor store soon with a fistful of dollars. Algonquin_low.jpg


Your glass definitely deserves whatever you spend.

#96 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 11 September 2012 - 01:34 PM

First, a couple of melon-based drinks from the book. Melon in a cocktail does not really appeal to me but I was curious.
I did not care for the Melon Stand, a long drink with Plymouth gin, watermelon juice, lemon juice, aperol, simple syrup. It is not that it was especially bad; it was just a little one-note. I was hoping for some kind of surprise but it was not particularly interesting, the kind of drink that you get from the first sip and does get better over time. It would probably work well for people who are afraid of Aperol though, in a way similar to the Introduction to Aperol.

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The Aguila Azteca on the other hand... What an improbable list of ingredients on paper: tequila blanco, melon juice (I used a very ripe cantaloupe, the recipe called for honeydew), ginger liqueur, crème de violette. Very odd. But it made perfect sense after the first sip. It is complex and a little spicy (the ginger in the background), the sweetness from the melon is balanced by the tequila and ginger. The floral notes of the violette contribute to the finish but are subtle enough to not be cloying. The melon + ginger + violette combination works really well.

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The Mexicano (tequila reposado, Campari, cucumber, champagne) was very good too - something to try if you like Campari. It reminded me of a Negroni Sbagliato, but the interplay between the spice of the tequila reposado and the bitterness of Campari was where this cocktail got memorable for me.

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And last but not least, the White Negroni that I discussed in the Lillet thread. The extra 0.5 oz of (Plymouth) gin in the PDT version makes it is a little less intense than what I am used to. Typically I use a 1.5/1/0.75 gin/Lillet/Suze ratio (PDT calls for 2/1/0.75). But since the drink is served up so the proportions make sense. It's such a great drink; with this version it makes me think of a very elegant bitter Martini.

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#97 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 13 September 2012 - 10:47 AM

I am a sucker for Chartreuse, although cocktails with Chartreuse as one of the main ingredients can be overwhelmingly sweet and herbal which can result in rapid taste-bud fatigue. However this one, the Vauvert Slim, does not fall into that category. It combines grapefruit juice, lime juice, green Chartreuse, mint, and egg white, and a Laphroaig rinse. It is crisp and refreshing with the amazingly long smoky finish from the Laphroaig. Plus it is very attractive in the glass.

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#98 ChrisTaylor

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Posted 13 September 2012 - 01:39 PM

Conquistador without the egg. I just don't like egg in cocktail.

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#99 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 14 September 2012 - 09:54 AM

Dry County Cocktail. A summer Manhattan with Tennessee whisky (book calls for Dickel, I used Gentleman Jack), dry vermouth, ginger liqueur, and lemon bitters (I used grapefruit). Crisp and citrusy.

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#100 ChrisTaylor

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Posted 15 September 2012 - 02:10 AM

Left Hand w/ Buffalo Trace stepping nicely into the bourbon role.

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#101 haresfur

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Posted 15 September 2012 - 07:27 PM

Left Hand w/ Buffalo Trace stepping nicely into the bourbon role.

Left hand is to 1794 as Boulevardier is to Old Pal?

Although it sounds like the KC Left hand calls for more bourbon than you said you used.
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#102 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 03:55 PM


Left Hand w/ Buffalo Trace stepping nicely into the bourbon role.

Left hand is to 1794 as Boulevardier is to Old Pal?

Although it sounds like the KC Left hand calls for more bourbon than you said you used.


I am not sure I am following you. Boulevardier is rye or bourbon/sweet vermouth/Campari. Old Pal substitutes dry vermouth for the sweet.
The Left Hand is a Boulevardier with bourbon and mole bitters. [And the Right Hand is the rum version of the Boulevardier.]
The 1794 that you have linked looks like a Left Hand with rye instead of bourbon. It uses sweet vermouth, not dry like in the Old Pal.

#103 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 04:14 PM

I was unsure about the use of figs in a cocktail, although I adore figs. But I am trying to keep an open mind so I made the Figetaboutit last night: bourbon, lemon juice, amaretto, fig, Angostura bitters. I did not have fig jam so I just muddled a fresh black fig with some sugar. The recipe only uses a bar spoon's worth.

If I had not been so worried about the amaretto/fig on paper, I would have realized what was evident after the first sip. This is just a whiskey sour with a touch of amaretto and fig to balance out the lemon juice. Lovely. I recently had a horrendous version of a whisky sour at a local restaurant promoting its "craft cocktails", but this version was nothing like it. Fig and amaretto were great together and subtle enough to not transform this drink into a sweet mess. Instead, they created a memorable finish. Well done.

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#104 Chris Amirault

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 07:57 PM

Boy, that's a tricky one to balance. I tried it tonight with a Dalmatian fig jam that, sadly, had big chunks of fig in it of which I was unaware until I strained. That, plus a dry Wild Turkey 101 bourbon, a too-tangy lemon, and a relatively dry Marie Brizard amaretto, meant that I had a mouthful of pucker with little figgyness. Into the sink it went... with a promise to work on balance next time.

So I banged out an Eclipse:

2 oz Chinaco añejo tequila
3/4 oz Heering
3/4 oz Aperol
3/4 oz lemon juice

What an amazing drink, a perfect embodiment of the PDT principles of provocation, balance, and deliciousness.
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#105 blue_dolphin

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 07:52 PM

I was unsure about the use of figs in a cocktail, although I adore figs. But I am trying to keep an open mind so I made the Figetaboutit last night: bourbon, lemon juice, amaretto, fig, Angostura bitters. I did not have fig jam so I just muddled a fresh black fig with some sugar. The recipe only uses a bar spoon's worth.

If I had not been so worried about the amaretto/fig on paper, I would have realized what was evident after the first sip. This is just a whiskey sour with a touch of amaretto and fig to balance out the lemon juice. Lovely. I recently had a horrendous version of a whisky sour at a local restaurant promoting its "craft cocktails", but this version was nothing like it. Fig and amaretto were great together and subtle enough to not transform this drink into a sweet mess. Instead, they created a memorable finish. Well done.

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Beautiful job with the garnish! I love figs too and had wondered about infusing dried figs into brandy or something but I've never tried them in a cocktail. After seeing your post yesterday, I gave it a whirl this evening with the Trader Joe's Fig Butter that I picked up the other day. I'm enjoying the flavors of this drink but it's a swampy brown color - rather unappetizing. Not surprising either, as the fig butter is an almost black paste. I love your idea of muddling a fresh fig with a bit of sugar.

#106 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 21 September 2012 - 12:49 PM

Beautiful job with the garnish! I love figs too and had wondered about infusing dried figs into brandy or something but I've never tried them in a cocktail. After seeing your post yesterday, I gave it a whirl this evening with the Trader Joe's Fig Butter that I picked up the other day. I'm enjoying the flavors of this drink but it's a swampy brown color - rather unappetizing. Not surprising either, as the fig butter is an almost black paste. I love your idea of muddling a fresh fig with a bit of sugar.


Thanks blue_dolphin. The fresh fig was from Trader Joe's by the way.

I had fun with the garnish but if you want to make an exact replica of the version they serve at PDT, I realized after the fact that they had a video showing how to make it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zDW6Dmx8QQI

#107 blue_dolphin

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Posted 22 September 2012 - 01:31 PM

I can't believe you found an instructional video on that garnish, FrogPrincesse! I'll have to find myself some fancy picks and try that next time.

#108 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 10:26 AM

Sipping "That Green Drink" (from the Chartreuse thread) the other night I kept thinking that it had potential but was not quite right. It was just too busy and as a result felt too strong and heavy ("liquoreux" comes to mind).

So I thought how great it would be to modify it and substitute tequila for the gin and refocus the drink on highlighting the herbal grassy notes of the Chartreuse rather than its syrupy quality with the white vermouth combo that I did not care for. Then I realized that there was already something similar in the PDT cocktail book, the Lawn Dart that combined tequila blanco, gin, lime juice, agave syrup, Chartreuse and green bell pepper.

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It tasted like fresh cut grass, with a slight kick from the muddled green pepper. Beautiful green notes. After a few sips I realized that it recreated the flavors I like in a good zubrowka/ bison grass vodka, which I have not had in a while because of the coumarin issue and reformulations for the US market.

#109 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 10:53 AM

For my husband who needed a break from Chartreuse I made the Little Bit Country that was mentioned way upthread.

The ingredients are pretty straightforward with a combo of bourbon, maple syrup, lemon juice, maraschino, angostura and orange bitters, until you get to the final ingredient - muddled jalapeño.

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I was afraid that it would be overly spicy but it was perfectly balanced. The richness of the maple syrup did wonders with the jalapeno. There was some heat but it did not take over. The flamed orange zest was a nice touch. Another winner.

Edited by FrogPrincesse, 25 September 2012 - 10:53 AM.


#110 tanstaafl2

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 09:02 PM

It tasted like fresh cut grass, with a slight kick from the muddled green pepper. Beautiful green notes. After a few sips I realized that it recreated the flavors I like in a good zubrowka/ bison grass vodka, which I have not had in a while because of the coumarin issue and reformulations for the US market.


Reminds me that I need to crack open that bottle of Zubrowka that I brought home from London. Might have to track down the sanitized US version for comparison.
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#111 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 10:11 PM

Reminds me that I need to crack open that bottle of Zubrowka that I brought home from London. Might have to track down the sanitized US version for comparison.

Regarding zubrowka, do avoid the brand Bak's. Their version is awful, completely artificial tasting. I have a bottle I have no idea what to do with.

#112 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 02:35 PM

The following cocktail could go under "Drambuie" or "Lillet", but since I found it in the PDT cocktail book I am just going to add it to this thread. The Prince Edward: Scotch whisky (the book called for blended malt whisky, I substituted Glenfiddich 12), Lillet blanc, Drambuie, orange bitters (I used Regan's + Angostura), flamed orange twist.

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Not bad; quite boozy and rich (on the verge of being syrupy). Maybe not the best choice with the heat.

#113 tanstaafl2

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 09:03 PM


Reminds me that I need to crack open that bottle of Zubrowka that I brought home from London. Might have to track down the sanitized US version for comparison.

Regarding zubrowka, do avoid the brand Bak's. Their version is awful, completely artificial tasting. I have a bottle I have no idea what to do with.


Will do. Lookling for the "Zu" version which I think comes from the same company, Polmos, as the bottle I got in London.
If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man. ~Mark Twain

Some people are like a Slinky. They are not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs...
~tanstaafl2

#114 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 16 October 2012 - 12:44 PM

I made a Benton's Old Fashioned last night with Bulleit rye infused with home-cured bacon fat.

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Very nice. I think I will try to put my hands on some Benton's bacon soon so I can try the original version and also assess my bacon-making skills!

#115 campus five

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Posted 16 October 2012 - 06:24 PM

Do it. Doooo it.

bentonscountryhams2.com

It's $24 for 4 one-pound packages.

Dooooooo it.

(oh, and a 1-pound package makes a great christmas gift for your foodie friends)

Edited by campus five, 16 October 2012 - 06:25 PM.


#116 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 16 October 2012 - 10:26 PM

Do it. Doooo it.

bentonscountryhams2.com

It's $24 for 4 one-pound packages.

Dooooooo it.

(oh, and a 1-pound package makes a great christmas gift for your foodie friends)

Definitely going to order some bacon (and country ham) from Benton's. I just need to figure out how much!

#117 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 23 October 2012 - 11:29 AM

A Martinez prepared according to the PDT specifications with Hayman's Old Tom gin, Dolin sweet vermouth, Luxardo maraschino, Boker's bitters, orange twist. I opened the bottle of vermouth for the occasion. It's a good thing that I like the Boker's bitters because my dashes were extremely generous (my bottle pours way too fast even when I am very careful). Great drink.

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Martinez, the PDT way: Hayman's old tom gin, Dolin sweet vermouth, Luxardo maraschino, Boker's bitters by *FrogPrincesse*, on Flickr


#118 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 01:03 PM

Here is the Benton's Old Fashioned with actual Benton's bacon. I think I overdid it a little bit on the fat extraction - I had about 3 ounces of fat in 16 ounces of bourbon. It's amazing how much it tasted like bacon at the end of the process, smoke and all. That cocktail is amazing.

I made little containers of bacon-infused bourbon for my friends as a holiday present. I am storing these jars in the freezer.

I also tried spiking a little bit of Old Men bacon bitters in there just for fun, but that did not really seem to do much given how strong the bacon flavor was in the first place. I would be curious to try the cocktail with regular bourbon and the bitters to see how much of a flavor boost they add on their own.

Posted Image

Edited by FrogPrincesse, 13 December 2012 - 01:03 PM.


#119 FrogPrincesse

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Posted 14 December 2012 - 11:24 AM

A Ward Eight last night with the PDT ratios. Rittenhouse bottled in bond, lemon juice, orange juice, simple syrup, pomegranate molasses.

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Surprisingly tart. Once my tastebuds adjusted, I enjoyed it, although it took me a few sips to find the aromas of the rye under all the juice...

#120 Chris Amirault

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 07:52 PM

Just made the Rapscallion:

2 1/2 oz Talisker
3/4 oz Lustau PX Sherry
absinthe rinse (see below)

Stir; strain; lemon twist (discard).

I don't have St. George absinthe so I subbed in my beloved Marteau, and instead of a rinse I dashed a bit into the mixing tin.

This is one of those items that I could nurse all night long: so simple in its creation yet, in its reliance on three very complex items -- the PX sherry, Talisker, and absinthe -- one crazy, intricate drink. Not for everyone, but I'm all in.
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