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Everything posted by Rafa

  1. Work in progress. Dark rum blend, dark sherry blend, ginger, demerara, spice blend, mole bitters, lime. Progressing very nicely.
  2. I am working, at work, on a series of revised or reconsidered classics for our bottled cocktail program. For the most part I like to stay true to the spirit of the original, augmented by as much research as I can muster (my Presidente contains many of the additives common to Cuban rum of that period); but where history and my palate part ways, I commit cheerful sacrilege (my Presidente has apricot eau de vie, because it's delicious). A bonus pleasure involved in batching drinks for bottling is that pre-service assemblage allows, or in my case encourages, involved and finicky recipes, such that I can split my base spirit among three brandies (as in the attached recipe) rather than be at the mercy of the Calvados blender (as in my simpler à-la-minute Widow's Kiss recipe). Anyway, I've included a photograph of my spec, rather than of the finished product, so you can all join @Hassouni in critiquing my handwriting. Also, you should all visit The Up & Up when you're in toen. We have fun here.
  3. Sounds wonderful. Heads up, though, @EvergreenDan: the Iggy calls for Punt e Mes, not CAF. Fun fact: when I worked at a rooftop bar this past summer, the Italian Greyhound was one of our most pooular drinks, even among the decidedly non-cocktailian set of rooftop-seekers we hosted. I believe the only drinks that outsold it were the Margarita and the mighty Tito's-soda.
  4. I made a guest a Monkey 47 Martini at her request the other night. It makes, unsurprisinglu an extremely complex drink, and as such can stand up to plenty of dilution and plenty of vermouth. I would hold the bitters in this case.
  5. @Craig E, if you liked the Uffizi, you might like the Italian Greyhound: equal parts grapefruit juice and Punt e Mes, shaken and served on the rocks with a half salt rim.
  6. Of the Picon-alikes on the US market, I think Bigallet is by far the best (and better than the real thing). That said, Golden Moon is decent. It's what we use at my bar and it gets the job done.
  7. So as to salvage what dignity I have left... Last night's other quaff, The Up & Up's very own By The Fireside, one of my favorites from our menu. Tawny Port, chicory coffee, lemon juice, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  8. My spec is 1 oz Midori 1 oz Martin Miller's Westbourne Strength 1 oz Lime juice 1/2 oz Simple syrup egg white Dry shake, shake, strain, up. Our house spec at The Up & Up (yes, we have a house Midori Sour, because we love good things) is slightly different, with a blend of our own lime cordial and lemon juice.
  9. Midori Sour. Oh, and another Betsy.
  10. Betsy. Smith & Cross, Ransom Old Tom, port, lime, ginger, Ango bitters, allspice spray on the mint. I forgot the yellow Chartreuse from my original recipe, and you know what? I like it better.
  11. Rafa


    That's some list, @Chris Hennes. In mezcal more than most spirits, you see discussion of terroir and provenance playing a role. This is because mezcal is made from a variety of strains of agave, in towns and states across Mexico, each with its own techniques and traditions. Different strains (like Madrecuixe, listed above, or Blue Weber, the agave used in tequila), soils, harvesting techniques, and yeasts (wild or otherwise) will impact the character of the beer. Many agaves are roasted in open pits or underground, which is what gives many mezcals their characteristic smokiness. The still (clay, copper, or otherwise) will contribute flavor as well, and in some cases roasted chicken ("pechuga"), rabbit ("conejo"), or whole meals ("ensamble") will be floated above the still to contribute unexpected flavors. One of the Sotols listed above even has rattlesnake ("Curado con Cascabel"). (Sotol, by the way, is not a mezcal—it's another regional Mexican spirit made from desert spoon rather than agave). The world of mezcal is vast. Some of these will taste tropical and fruity, others flinty and earthy, yet others like liquid brimstone. This is an extensive list, curated by someone who knows the mezcal regions well. It appears to feature direct imports. I recommend letting the staff talk and taste you through it. Enjoy.
  12. Double Dutch. Genever, curaçao, pear eau de vie, lemon, honey, ginger, orange bitters. A loose takeoff of our menu's Barnum Effect (genever, curaçao, lemon, pistachio, Branca Menta, orange bitters). Fun.
  13. Rafa


    I get peanut butter from American whiskies sometimes. So maybe the Rittenhouse?
  14. Old [expletive]' Fashioned.
  15. Mai Tai. One day I'll remember to photograph my shift drink before I start drinking it (though it's hard with a Mai Tai). The mint couldn't be helped, which is why it ended up in my drink and not a guest's. [1.5 oz Smith & Cross 1.5 oz Bonal Gentiane-Quina]* 1/2 oz PF curaçao 1 oz lime 3/4 oz orgeat *=my heretical Jamaican "rum" blend. I might reduce the Bonal going forward. This was a good Mai Tai. The flavor was excellent but the balance needs work; it tastes right at the sip, but it falls apart as it makes its way down the irlGullet, with the orgeat becoming too prominent. Still. A very nice consolation to myself considering I probably won't make Pouring Ribbons' Tiki Monday tonight.
  16. Sounds great! Tonight, an impromptu and à la minute mulled wine with which to ride out the snowstorm, with Bonal as the base and accents of blackstrap rum, lime, and allspice. Edit: Discovery of the night: an equal-parts blend of Cruzan Blackstrap and Donn's Spices #2 used in minute amounts is an instant-aging serum for already aged spirits (rhum agricole, brandy, bourbon).
  17. Inspired by bostonapothecary's recent discussion of prune juice as a traditional rum additive, I started thinking about the felicitous combination of Bonal with Smith & Cross, and, with sacrilegious disregard for spirit categories, began using an equal parts mix of the two as my go-to "rum" in recipes that call for the Jamaican stuff. A Mai Tai with an ounce and a half of Bonal to one and a half of Smith & Cross is a thing of beauty.
  18. He shared it on Instagram, so I doubt he'll mind if I share it here: Spiders from Mars: I believe he stirred in a kitchen sink as well.
  19. It's my colleague Jimmy Palumbo's. If I recall correctly it was Old Tom Gin with pistachio orgeat, some kind of sherry, various modifiers, and a bitters float for the Mars. The spiders are star anise.
  20. To me, an Eclipse is basically what a Blood & Sand should be. (Although curiously, I haven't found it to work very well with Scotch.)
  21. ^^@JoNorvelleWalker, I love this post.
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