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jsmeeker

Meyer lemons in cocktails

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Lillet thread

Unfortunately (I feel), starting in 1986 Lillet reduced the quinine component in their flagship product.


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More on the acidity of the meyer lemon. It is just a summary of a larger food science article.

<http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1365-2621.1965.tb00266.x>.

Mean total ascorbic acid, with standard deviation, in 82 samples of Meyer lemon grown in California was 34.7 ± 15.6 mg per 100 ml juice and 54.9 ± 20.3 mg per 100 g peel. The difference in ascorbic acid content between juice and pulp was not significant. The concentration of ascorbic acid in the juice decreased with maturity of the fruit. Ascorbic acid content of the juice, although somewhat lower than in oranges and commercial lemons, compares well with that of other citrus fruit, such as grapefruit, limes, and tangerines. Reducing sugars, as glucose, in the juice averaged 4.6 g per 100 ml; free acidity as citric acid, 3.5 g; pH, 2.65; sucrose, 0. The concentration of reducing sugars increased and that of free acidity decreased as the fruit matured.


"Wives and such are constantly filling up any refrigerator they have a

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food."" - Kingsley Amis

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Right. This leads me to think that the fuss is about not about acid so much as it's about sugar. The USDA measures the pH of lime juice at 2.00 to 2.35; lemon juice at 2.00 to 2.60; and the JFS says Meyers average 2.65. Even given the logarithmic nature of the pH scale, the average Meyer is only a bit less acidic than a standard lemon (much closer to lemon than it is to orange, which ranges around pH 4); what seems to make the difference is sugar content, since standard lemons and limes contain very little, and oranges by comparison have about twice as much sugar as Meyer lemons.

Thyme scent aside (I've never noticed this, but now I'm going to be on my guard), it seems to me that anyone used to making recipe adjustments from Old Overholt to Rittenhouse BIB or Tanqueray to Plymouth shouldn't find Meyer lemons all that perplexing.


Dave Scantland
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eG Ethics signatory

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TVC: Your figures are looking at ascorbic acid -- aka vitamin C. Rather, we would like to look at citric acid.

Dave: My forays in to sourdough microbiology suggest that the perceived sourness contributed by a slug of citrus juice to a cocktail is more attributable to total titratable acid than the pH of the juice.


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TVC: Your figures are looking at ascorbic acid -- aka vitamin C.  Rather, we would like to look at citric acid.

Yes, of course. I should have noticed, as I know the difference. Still, an interesting breakdown.


"Wives and such are constantly filling up any refrigerator they have a

claim on, even its ice compartment, with irrelevant rubbish like

food."" - Kingsley Amis

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TVC: Your figures are looking at ascorbic acid -- aka vitamin C.  Rather, we would like to look at citric acid.

Yes, of course. I should have noticed, as I know the difference. Still, an interesting breakdown.

No, it's in there: "free acidity as citric acid, 3.5 g (per 100 ml)."

For reference, over here it says "(l)emon juice and lime juice are rich sources of citric acid, containing 1.44 and 1.38 g/oz, respectively." Converting the JFS numbers to g/oz gives us 1.03 g/oz of citric acid for a Meyer.

ETA: if my arithmetic is correct (grams per ounce is a dumb way to measure), oranges have about 0.22 g/oz of citric acid. (Check my math: it's roughly 750 mg/100 ml.)


Edited by Dave the Cook (log)

Dave Scantland
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dscantland@eGstaff.org
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Eat more chicken skin.

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TVC: Your figures are looking at ascorbic acid -- aka vitamin C.  Rather, we would like to look at citric acid.

Yes, of course. I should have noticed, as I know the difference. Still, an interesting breakdown.

No, it's in there: "free acidity as citric acid, 3.5 g (per 100 ml)."

For reference, over here it says "(l)emon juice and lime juice are rich sources of citric acid, containing 1.44 and 1.38 g/oz, respectively." Converting the JFS numbers to g/oz gives us 1.03 g/oz of citric acid for a Meyer.

Maybe I missed it but how does that compare to an orange or grapefruit?


Andy Arrington

Journeyman Drinksmith

Twitter--@LoneStarBarman

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Still, the thing that bugs me the most about them is the smell of the peel.

I agree with that. It's quite tricky to avoid getting that herbal note when you're juicing it for a drink. I've often thought that I'd managed to do so and then, when the drink hits my tongue -- blech: there it is.

Perhaps that's why I find Meyer lemons to go well with components that have an herbal overtone -- Chartreuse and Lillet, for instance.

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Meyer Lemon Caipirinha

gallery_28660_3_28914.jpg

I like the orangey hint and you can cut back the sugar to bring the cachaça forward.

See here for step-by-step.


"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

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In a Jack Rose...tasty.

1.5 Applejack

1 meyer lemon

.5 homemade grenadine (100% pomegranate, reduced half - add equal amount sugar - splash of orange blossom)

shake, strain

Just whipped up a Jack Rose. I didn't have a chance to make my own grenadine, so I used Rose's :unsure:

This is a nice drink. I think it's pretty approachable and would be appreciated by people not yet into goof cocktails. This is gonna stay in my rotation. Eventually, I'll get to the point where I will make my own grenadine. And I'll try it with standard lemons, too.


Jeff Meeker, aka "jsmeeker"
jmeeker@eGullet.org

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Just whipped up a Jack Rose. I didn't have a chance to make my own grenadine, so I used Rose's

If you make your own simple syrup then you have the time to make your own grenadine as it's that easy*. The difference between REAL grenadine and Rose's HFCS colored water is huge. Huge.

Then try the Jack Rose again.

*Grenadine (Cold or hot method)

Combine 1 cup sugar and one cup of pomegranate juice (POM) and shake. Then shake again. And again. And again...

Pour two cups of pomegranate juice into a saucepan. Bring to a boil, then simmer over medium-low heat until reduced by half. Add one cup of sugar, and stir until dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool.

The first is a fresher brighter grenadine while the second has a deeper, richer flavor. Then you can play with it some, add Orange Flower Water, etc. Both kick ass over Rose's.


"The only time I ever said no to a drink was when I misunderstood the question."

Will Sinclair

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Yeah.. I'll eventually make some. I just happened to be in the liquor store on Friday buying some stuff. They have Roses there, but they don't carry POM pomegranate juice. I've been pretty busy this weekend and just didn't get a chance to swing by the grocery store.

BTW, what is "orange flower water" and where do I get it? Is it something from the liquor store? Is it from the grocery store?


Jeff Meeker, aka "jsmeeker"
jmeeker@eGullet.org

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Mine is "Cedar Phoenicia" brand, which seems to be the most common. Found it in the ethnic aisle of the local Whole Foods.

As for what it is, cocktaildb says it is, "Generic for diluted orange flower extract in water," and it commonly shows up in very small quantities...

All this said, anyone know how long it lasts once it's open?


Marty McCabe

Boston, MA

Acme Cocktail Company

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Made some grenadine last night. Went with the "hot" method, except I halved the recipe. 1 cup POM, reduce to half a cup, stir in half cup sugar. I transfered it to a squeeze bottle and it's sitting in the fridge, ready to make a Jack Rose when I get home from work. I also picked up more meyer lemons, plus regular lemons so I can do a side my side taste test.

Now I need to see what other drinks I can make with this grenadine.


Jeff Meeker, aka "jsmeeker"
jmeeker@eGullet.org

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Now I need to see what other drinks I can make with this grenadine.

I'd recommend the Secret Cocktail from Vintage Spirits & Forgotten Cocktails

1 1/2 oz London dry gin

1/2 oz applejack

Juice of 1/2 lemon (I suppose you can compare regular to Meyer*)

1 egg white

2 dashes grenadine

Shake "up with all due vigor" and strain into a cocktail glass

A variation on the Clover Club and Pink Lady

*Not a fan of the Meyer lemon as I don't care for the smell of the oil. As someone recently pointed out to me, it's smells like graphite.

EDIT: Added opinion on Meyer lemon... to stay on topic


Edited by JerseyRED (log)

"The only time I ever said no to a drink was when I misunderstood the question."

Will Sinclair

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A caipirinha-like, sour-like, drink of diced Meyer lemon muddled with demerara sugar, with Wasmund's single-malt whiskey, turned out to be fantastic last night. It happened to be the only whiskey I had in the house, and I decided to go that route instead of the traditional whiskey sour.

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I did a variation of the Champs Elysee Cocktail with Meyer Lemon Juice and Navan once:

1 1/2 oz. Navan Vanilla

3/4 oz. Meyer Lemon Juice

1/2 oz. Yellow Chartreuse

3 dashes Aged Whiskey Barrel Bitters

Shake and strain.

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I just got my hands on some Meyer lemons, and found them to work quite nicely in a Twentieth Century cocktail. It's definitely not the same flavor profile as it would be with Eureka lemons, but the Meyers seem to have an affinity for the floral aspects of the Lillet.

Here's the recipe I used:

1 1/2oz Gin (Aviation)

3/4oz Meyer lemon juice

3/4oz Lillet blanc

1/2oz white creme de cacao

Cheers!

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To through a little botanizing into the discussion:

Nobody's sure exactly who the parents of the Meyer lemon were, citrus species being notoriously promiscuous in the cross-pollination game, but the current best guess is probably a cross between a lemon and either a mandarin or a regular sweet orange.

I totally agree with eje and others that the flavor profile of the peel is way off for most drinks; haven't experimented with herbal-profile drinks, but I can see it playing much better with basil/lavender/thyme notes. To my palate, there's an odd lemon pledge/burnt plastic taste to the peel that goes against the mild sweet/tart flavor of the juice. Who knows if a future cross will solve that problem?

I will say it worked very nicely with Cruzan estate and a few dashes of bitters on the rocks, although it probably overwhelmed the rum a bit.

Now the calamondin/kalamansi is a straightforward bitter orange/kumquat hybrid, and is incidentally one of the best citrus species for growing indoors, highly recommended even for apartment dwellers if you've got a sunny window. I used it successfully in a recipe for spiced gin that I found in a reprint of a 17th century fruits-of-all-seasons book, and I think it would work anywhere a bitter orange flavor is desired. Now I just have to wait for the fruit on my tree to ripen so I can experiment further! Great thread!


"The thirst for water is a primitive one. Thirst for wine means culture, and thirst for a cocktail is its highest expression."

Pepe Carvalho, The Buenos Aires Quintet by Manuel Vazquez Montalban

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I think I'm alone in loving the supple, oily rind of Meyers in cocktails. Maybe it's just where I'm getting the lemons, but so far I've yet to come face-to-face with the offensive herbal nastiness folks have been complaining of.

The following cocktail features muddled meyers, and even a floating slice. May sound nasty, but MAN, this has been my favorite lucky cocktail find so far. Looking at it now, I'm realizing with horror that this may well fit into that "CA fresh produce" school of mixology. The liquor and bitters are really nicely framed by the fruit flavors in this case, though.

Kind Of Blue

1.5 oz Rye Whiskey (I used Rittenhouse)

4 dashes Orange Bitters

2 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters

3 dashes Floral Liqueur (Try St. Germain or Creme de Violette)

2 tsp. Falernum

1/2 oz Dry Vermouth

8 Blueberries

1/8th of a Meyer Lemon (cut a half in quarters)

Muddle fruit in mixing glass with all ingredients, brusquely.

Add ice, stir, and strain into a white wine glass.

Float 1/4 oz sparkling water and a thin lemon slice over the top.

Sip slowly, and revel!

Picture here.


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I think I'm alone in loving the supple, oily rind of Meyers in cocktails.  Maybe it's just where I'm getting the lemons, but so far I've yet to come face-to-face with the offensive herbal nastiness folks have been complaining of.

I think that it is a matter of freshness. I love the peel as well, but I get my lemons off the tree instead of from the grocery, and I find that something is lost over time, much like with Satsuma mandarins. Meyer limoncello made from lemons fresh off the tree is also fantastic. I've been making Meyer lemon drops with the juice and the homemade limoncello. It's a nice way to showcase the complexity of the fruit.

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I think I'm alone in loving the supple, oily rind of Meyers in cocktails.  Maybe it's just where I'm getting the lemons, but so far I've yet to come face-to-face with the offensive herbal nastiness folks have been complaining of.

The following cocktail features muddled meyers, and even a floating slice.  May sound nasty, but MAN, this has been my favorite lucky cocktail find so far.  Looking at it now, I'm realizing with horror that this may well fit into that "CA fresh produce" school of mixology.  The liquor and bitters are really nicely framed by the fruit flavors in this case, though.

    Kind Of Blue

    1.5 oz Rye Whiskey (I used Rittenhouse)

    4 dashes Orange Bitters

    2 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters

    3 dashes Floral Liqueur (Try St. Germain or Creme de Violette)

    2 tsp. Falernum

    1/2 oz Dry Vermouth

    8 Blueberries

    1/8th of a Meyer Lemon (cut a half in quarters)

    Muddle fruit in mixing glass with all ingredients, brusquely.

    Add ice, stir, and strain into a white wine glass.

    Float 1/4 oz sparkling water and a thin lemon slice over the top.

    Sip slowly, and revel!

Picture here.

This recipe sounds excellent! The addition of Falernum is a really interesting touch - this is the first drink I'm making once I get more Meyers.

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Tonight I decided to try Janet's After School Special since I got a couple of Meyer lemons in my CSA.

6809835621_bb6b20eeef_z.jpg

It's refreshing, but to be honest I am having a hard time with the Meyer lemons. To me they have a very pronounced bitter/resin taste and I don't get any of the acidity that I normally associate with lemons.

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