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sbumgarner

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Everything posted by sbumgarner

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. sbumgarner

    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.
  4. sbumgarner

    Best Manhattan variations?

    That hit the spot last night.
  5. sbumgarner

    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.
  6. sbumgarner

    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.
  7. sbumgarner

    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.
  8. sbumgarner

    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.
  9. sbumgarner

    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.
  10. sbumgarner

    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.
  11. sbumgarner

    Elisir Novasalus Vino Amaro

    Sometimes the way to go with these things is to use it as a base split with another rough and tumble base, like a very smoky mezcal, or flavorful overproof rum like Smith and Cross or Wray and Nephew. Diving head-first into the intensity can possibly have better results than using a 1/4 oz as a modifier, for example. I've never tried this particular amaro so it's very possible I'm offering horrible advice. I tried something like this awhile back with Fernet, which from the sound of it is much tamer than the Novasalus, but it worked well, the template might work with any intense amaro. http://www.kindredcocktails.com/cocktail/the-count-of-kingston A few drops of saline solution could help too.
  12. You could try an all-brandy Sazerac (https://cold-glass.com/2012/01/27/why-is-there-cognac-in-my-sazerac/, for some example specs). I'm not a brandy/cognac/armagnac connoisseur by any stretch, but for cocktails I've found - and it's been said by many in this forum - that higher proof versions like PF 1840 formula, Louis Royer Force 53, etc usually do better in cocktails, the 80 proof stuff often gets lost in the drink. YMMV of course.
  13. sbumgarner

    Drinks! 2015 - 2016

    I tried this last night, upped the lime to 3/4 oz, also added a 1/4 oz 1:1 simple (also substituted with Neisson Blanc as that's my current un-aged agricole) and strained over a big rock. This was pretty darn nice indeed - I could see the simple not being needed, but it wasn't overly sweet and for my palate, I find just a touch can really make the fruit flavors in eau-de-vies and other fruit liqueurs pop.
  14. This has been mentioned awhile back in another thread, but while I generally like DrinkUpNY, they have had some issues with tracking their inventory. If you place an order for seven bottles and one of those is found to be out of stock after you ordered (even though the website doesn't say it's out of stock while you're ordering), instead of immediately contacting you, they'll often sit on the entire order for 2 weeks or more waiting for the one bottle to fulfill the order, leaving you wondering what the hell happened. The really nice thing about them is they ship pretty much anywhere, as mentioned upthread. Now that they ship to NJ, I've started using Astor much more frequently. Even though it's just across the river from me, not having to lug 10 bottles on the PATH has been great, and I always get stuff pretty soon after ordering. According to their site there are still states they can't ship to, but that list has dwindled significantly over the years.
  15. sbumgarner

    Best Manhattan variations?

    Ahh ok, I didn't know they had different labels for different markets.
  16. sbumgarner

    Best Manhattan variations?

    Wow, where did you get that Dolin from? I've never seen that label around, I guess it was the one before the current label?
  17. sbumgarner

    Drinks! 2015 - 2016

    I haven't picked up a bottle of that yet but that's a great idea, might have to seek one out.
  18. sbumgarner

    Drinks! 2015 - 2016

    1 oz PF 1840 Cognac .5 oz Smith & Cross .5oz Cynar 70 .75 oz lime .5 1:1 simple one 1" x 1" pineapple cube dash of Burlesque Bitters pinch of salt Shake, double strain over a big rock in a double old-fashioned. I liked this in general. I think next time I'd try making some pineapple shrub and using a little in place of the pineapple to get the pineapple flavor while adding some extra acidity. A scrape of nutmeg probably wouldn't hurt either.
  19. If there is an aromatic quality about the Feni I could easily see the Peychaud's working well. Regardless I'm glad it worked out.
  20. I have no idea what Feni tastes like, but given it's 85 proof it can probably stand in as a base spirit. For the "Feni, Orgeat, Lime Juice and Ango Bitters" drink, maybe start with a basic sour template and adjust from there? 2 oz Feni .75 oz lime .75 oz orgeat (maybe less depending on the sweetness of your orgeat) 1 or 2 dashes of Angostura Shake with ice, strain, serve up. It may not be great but it probably won't be horrible.
  21. sbumgarner

    Drinks! 2015 - 2016

    If I made my Mai Tais with 3 oz of overproof rum I'd definitely be walking a little crooked after two, I wouldn't feel too bad about it.
  22. The El Presidente is a classic, significantly less dry than a martini but in the same universe (especially if you cut a little of the blanc with dry).
  23. This is the first of the "Vino de Mezcal" series I've tried so I have no reference for comparison to something like the wild tepeztate you picked up, but if you ever see the Arroqueno I highly recommend picking it up.
  24. My wife and I got a bottle of Del Maguey Arroqueno for our annual "Christmas fancy bottle of booze". Holy crap this is good, for a 98 proof spirit it's borderline refreshing to drink as the bright melon flavor is so forward. It's all balanced out by a hint of smoke and some chocolate in the background. A great deal of restraint will be needed to make this bottle last (apparently they only made 300).
  25. sbumgarner

    Thanksgiving cocktails

    I've always wanted to give this a try, though apparently it takes about a week to make so too late for this year. http://savoystomp.com/2010/10/31/great-pumpkin-punch/
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