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About sbumgarner

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  1. Drinks! 2017 (Part 1)

    My Paper Plane riff last night: .75 oz El Dorado 8 .75 oz Averna .75 oz Cappelleti .75 oz lime Shake/strain/coupe. An enjoyable variant of the formula.
  2. Drinks! 2017 (Part 1)

    8-3-2 Daiquiri with Owney's. Excellent. After hearing a few raves about Owney's on this site I finally grabbed a bottle, definitely will be my Daiquiri go-to for the foreseeable future.
  3. Few Cask Strength Rye. Although I added water to get down to about 100 proof, I took a small sip at the 120 proof mark and it was still pretty damn good (my bottle of Thomas Handy rye, as a comparison, is mostly undrinkable to me at full proof, though also very good once diluted). Lots of baking spices, with a slightly sweet finish from the corn in the mashbill (I think I read it's about 70% rye, 20% corn, and 10% other stuff). I'll take more detailed tasting notes at some point but at $65 it's very nice for a cask-strength rye.
  4. Here's what they wrote down for me that night, which I realize is a little different than what some articles online are saying (for instance, no cacao). .75 Cynar .75 Novasalus .5 lemon .5 simple .5 Jamaican rum (they used Hamilton Jamaican, he said S&C could work but not to use something like Coruba) Short shake, strain into Collins glass with ice, top with soda water. Bracingly bitter in a surprisingly pleasant way.
  5. That's funny, I read that article a few weeks ago when I found out I was getting the Malort. I tend to agree, the Novasalus might be more intimidating. One day when life is going just a little too good I'll do a side-by-side comparison and report back. This is another funny article about Malort - "tastes like Sad Christmas" is a favorite quote.
  6. Not purchased, but traded with a friend for a copy of the newly reissued Fire Walks With Me soundtrack (which makes this officially the weirdest transaction I've ever taken part in). The bitterness is not overhyped, there are faint grapefruit notes hanging around and the nose is mostly alcohol burn. But what I like most about it is the complete lack of sweetness - I'm not opposed to sweetness in general at all, but my complaint about a few highly bitter amaros is sometimes the added sweetness makes it almost less palatable in a cough-syrupy way, when drunk straight at least. Not something I'll go to all that often but I could see the lack of sweetness making it more versatile for cocktails than something like Novasalus, which is still a hard nut to crack cocktail-wise (though anyone in the NYC area should go to Jupiter Disco and order the Dandelion Soda, which sort of proves my last sentence wrong, but seems to be more of an exception than a rule). I see a few things made with Malort on KC, will have to explore those.
  7. I don't think any of these books are written under the assumption that all the recipes can be replicated at any given time by any one person, but certainly there are plenty of drinks in this book that can be replicated for far less than thousands of dollars in booze.
  8. The Boulevardier cocktail

    A Boulevardier riff I tried last night: 1.5 oz Old Granddad 100 .75 oz Bruto Americano .5 oz Lustau PX Small pinch of salt Express a lemon peel and drop it in the stirring vessel, stir, strain, coupe, no garnish. I love this Bruto Americano, I was a little concerned the strong rosemary-ish flavors wouldn't jive but this seemed to work, the depth of sweetness from the PX helped.
  9. Best Manhattan variations?

    That hit the spot last night.
  10. Drinks! 2016 (Part 1)

    A simple fall sour last night. 2 oz blanco tequila (I used Cimarron) .75 oz lemon .5 oz orgeat .5 oz Mathilde Pear a dash of Owl and Whale Persimmon Bitters Shake, strain, coupe. The persimmon bitters are pretty good, some sweet baking spice notes, Angostura would probably work fine here too.
  11. Bourbon Question

    Here's a good calculator to figure out how much water to add to get it to a proof you prefer. http://homedistiller.org/distill/dilute/calc Don't have to be that exact, but if you'd like to get 2 oz of WT101 down to say 90 proof you add approximately .25 oz water. As lesliec says, a bit of water can sometimes open flavors in addition to reducing the alcohol heat, certainly no shame in that.
  12. Drinks! 2016 (Part 1)

    I've seen and/or tried some tequila/Aperol/Cocchi stirred drinks over the years, decided to do a slight riff on that using my newly acquired bottle of Cappelletti. 1.5 oz reposado tequila (I used the Siembra Azul 10th anniversary, which is really interesting on it's own, lots of methol and burnt rubber notes) .75 oz Cappelletti .25 oz Dolin Dry .25 oz Cocchi Americano 2 dashes Bittermens Mole Bitters Stir, strain into coupe, grapefruit twist. Pretty damn enjoyable for a cool end-of-summer night.
  13. Orgeat

    I just made the D&C version again and measured by volume, it turned out less sweet and thus more manageable with most cocktail specs (for example, the half-ounce in my usual Mai Tai proportions last night was well-balanced with the other ingredients). If you're looking for a recipe you can whip up in 30 mins or so I'd definitely recommend giving it a try. I've made the slower, soak-the-almonds-multiple-times way, and it's perhaps a touch better/more nuanced but to me not enough to justify the extra steps most of the time. That being said, making it the "hard" way at least once is fun and will give you a traditional baseline to compare against.
  14. Drinks! 2015 - 2016

    I happened to pick up a bottle of the Stiggins on Saturday and made a Sazerac on your suggestion - the only substitute I made was subbing Green Chartreuse for absinthe in the rinse. Fantastic about sums it up.
  15. Drinks! 2015 - 2016

    A French bistro here in Jersey City, that had previously been a BYO establishment, recently changed locations and got a liquor license. The owners also run a wine store in town that features a small but well-curated selection of spirits. I've become friends with them over the years and occasionally put together a cocktail tasting to help them push whatever new spirits come in. When word got out they were moving to a place with a full bar I offered to do their cocktail menu and they accepted. I tried to keep it based in French spirits/liqueurs, and primarily used stuff they already are selling at the store in an effort to keep the inventory manageable for at least the first few months. From testing/tweaking this is what I've been drinking a lot of recently ... The new place has only been open for 8 days, but so far the reaction to the cocktails has been pretty decent.