cdh

eGullet Society staff emeritus
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About cdh

  • Birthday 09/29/1973

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  1. Only you know the tastes of the folks coming. Do you want to do a keg of something lowest common denominator like a keg of your area's go to party beer for people who don't like beer with too much flavor? Here in PA, that would be keg of Yuengling, at probably the neighborhood of $100, and you'd serve 100 people with it. If you are confident that your people could handle a step up, check what's available at what price points from your distributors whereever you are... beer laws and prices are different in every state, so my PA (liquor laws vintage 1934) advice is only worth so much. As to liquor, think about a couple of premade cocktails for the event... no mixing at the moment. The most you want to do is pour over ice and stir. What flavor palate you're mixing for is a mystery... Gin is cheaper than bourbon... so if your people can handle gin based drinks, make a few of them. If they need vodka, then you're kinda saved... no vodka drinks taste good (at least to me) so you could mix it with any damn thing you felt like and they'd not care any the less. Does this crowd need fruity? Boozy? Booze hidden under lots of other stuff? Complicated? Know any homebrewers who keg beer? Borrow a couple of kegs, make a 5 gallon batch of gin and tonics (3.5 l gin ($25), 15 l tonic ($15)... make a 5 gallon batch of a rum punch for about the same price... serve from the kegs.
  2. I've given sample 11 some more chances, and 190F, western ratios produce something very nice. The lilac still doesn't come through on the palate, but the aroma and the flavor complement each other well with that set of brewing parameters.
  3. Is this just a expansion of the Waiter Rant book's thesis into the kitchen? I imagine the author there didn't poll the cooks because of a language gap... Since OP is coming from a French POV, is there that same language gap between kitchen and servers? In the US, it seems that the majority of folks manning the stoves are not exactly fluent in English.
  4. After a bit of a break to drink other non-relevant stuff for the past couple of weeks, we're up to sample 11. Tightly crumpled leaves. Amazing lilac fragrance. Very easy to make astringent in the cup. Another case of the aroma being more interesting than the flavor.
  5. Are you sure that is allspice? That looks like a Datura, usually poisonous. The spikey seed pods are a giveaway. Is allspice related to jimsonweed?
  6. Capers

    The vinegar that they're pickled in is amazing when mixed with brown butter... chop up a few capers in there too, but the vinegar + brown butter is just a magical flavor even if no capers leave the jar.
  7. I don't think performing a written recipe in front of a camera is plagiarism at all...
  8. Thanks for spotting what the goji berries were. They didn't infuse into anything interesting given a few minutes in hot water... their dry aroma was more interesting than their rehydrated aroma... much more fruity when dry... more cardboardy when wet.
  9. Since sample 9 was a bust, I've moved on to sample 10: This is labelled oolong tea, and one appears to be in the package. This one is quite well roasted, looking very dark, and very tightly curled up. I've gone to the gongfu method on this one to fine effect. It has a roasty aroma, a smooth rich initial flavor, and subsides into a long fruity finish. More a peachy flavor than plummy... tough to get more descriptive than that. More interesting with water at 200F than at 190F. 6 infusions in and seems like it is just getting started... the leaves are very slow to unfold.
  10. Sample 9 brings a bit of a mystery. Is this a packing error, or is there a thing they also call Tie Guan Yin that is not a tea, but a bunch of raisin-y dried fruits? The packaging pretty clearly says in English Tie Guan Yin, which I've always expected to be an oolong tea... but when I opened it up there were these flame red raisins. I tried making tea with them... but they sorta smell like wet cardboard, and don't taste of much of anything. So after a couple of sips, this made fast acquaintance with my sink and its attendant plumbing. Anybody who happens to recognize what these are and has an idea of what they're supposed to be like is more than welcome to chime in and let me know what I missed.
  11. No Morbier

    Maybe the dollar/euro conversion rate made it too expensive when the euro was really high and your stores dropped it... now that the Euro is cheaper again, if you ask, maybe they'll bring it back. Markets for such stuff are often price sensitive... That which sells for $12/lb sits on the shelf at $20.
  12. With the pu erh, the initial infusions get rid of some of the real funky stuff... the horse barn goes away and the teas get really rich and sweet at about infusion 3 or 4, and some of them can keep going out to 10+ infusions. One of the little samples that had been sitting here for 5 years gave a distinct banana ester thing in its first couple of infusions. Just goes to show that pu erhs are actively evolving and organic chemistry is churning away in them as they age.
  13. Go gongfu on it. Pu erh seems really ideal for that treatment. I'd start with water around 200 and vary it up or down depending on whether you are getting more astringency than you like with that. Try 3g to about 100ml of water. Rinse to get the leaves rehydrating... then short 10 or 15 second infusions at the beginning. Read some of the pu erh tasting threads here for more details on how others have done it.
  14. Sample 8 looks to be either green, or a very lightly oxidized oolong. EXTREME tropical floral aroma out of the bag... very sweet floral. I think it has to be osmanthus scented, as that is the closest floral aroma that comes to mind. Trying it gongfu style to begin on the guess it is oolong-y enough to benefit from that treatment. 2.75g with water at 200F. 5 second rinse, followed by 30 seconds infusion. Disappointing... astringent and a bit bitter... the aroma does not come through in the flavor. Decremented the water temp down to 190 and a 45 second infusion is still not getting the flavor and aroma to harmonize. Gonna try 180 next.
  15. Final verdict on the gunpowder is "meh". There are much more appealing greens out there. This tea veers toward the astringent/bitter too much.