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Stocking the nursery-school bar, take 2


Fat Guy
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I believe everything I read on Wikipedia, which says "While Frida herself maintained that her father was of Hungarian-Jewish ancestry, researchers have established that Guillermo Kahlo's parents were not Jewish but Lutheran Germans."

I'm thinking for that Paloma variant maybe we should call it The Raul Julia. That's got to be the most recognizable Mexican Jewish name out there.

I'm thinking Guitar Player for the Missing Link cocktail.

Maybe Builder's Fizz or something for the Champagne cocktail? I don't know. We can do better on all these names I'm sure.

In terms of quantities, it seems like overkill to me to have 150 of each cocktail plus wine for a group that isn't necessarily out to get hammered and probably contains a few non-drinkers and wine-only drinkers. Maybe 100 of each? I hate the idea of running out but also don't want to waste. Thoughts?

Assuming 100 of the Missing Link, the original recipe is 1.5oz. rum, 1oz. triple sec, .5oz. fresh lemon juice. That's 3oz. of cocktail, shaken, which I'm guessing means for batching I should dilute with water to a total of 4oz.? Poured over rocks that should do the trick. Backing that out to 100 cocktails we're talking 300oz. cocktails and 100oz. water, right? Which means 150oz. rum, 100oz. triple sec and 50oz fresh lemon juice. So I'd need 4.5 liters of rum, 3 liters of triple sec and 1.5 liters of fresh lemon juice, plus 3 liters of bottled water. Did I get that right? Before I compute the others, let me know if I'm crazy here.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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I don't see the point of the vodka in the champagne cocktail -- unless you're trying to get people plastered -- and would suggest something like a lesser amount of cognac instead

What would be an alternative to Cognac, which is difficult to find kosher? Whiskey of some sort?

Anything but vodka, really. Here's the reality: In a champagne cocktail, it's not going to taste any different with vodka in it than it would with no vodka in it. So the only difference will be the amount of booze in the cocktail, and in this case more booze = bad. You don't want people sipping multiple glasses of something that drinks like fruity champagne but packs a hidden punch. So, if cognac is a problem, I'd think you could make something pretty good using whiskey. In particular, there is a brand called Old Williamsburg that's a kosher whiskey. It's usually in stock at Astor Wines.

Rather than garnishing with pomegranate seeds, which will be a gigantic pain in the butt and also not particularly pleasant for the drinkers, I suggest you use the Pom more as a garnish. You could do a standard French 75 formulation (gin, lemon juice, sugar, champagne) substituting Old Williamsburg for the gin. Call it a "Landsman's 75" or something like that. Then you can make a "pomegranate syrup" by shaking the Pom in equal amounts with sugar, and put that into a squirt bottle. The Pom syrup then becomes the garnish... you put the batched whiskey, lemon and sugar combination into the bottom of the glass, top with champagne and then squirt in some of the pomegranate syrup. Or, if you want a more layered effect, you could just keep the Pom as-is and float it on top of the drink. A minor amount of experimentation would reveal the best aesthetic effect.

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Assuming 100 of the Missing Link, the original recipe is 1.5oz. rum, 1oz. triple sec, .5oz. fresh lemon juice. That's 3oz. of cocktail, shaken, which I'm guessing means for batching I should dilute with water to a total of 4oz.? Poured over rocks that should do the trick. Backing that out to 100 cocktails we're talking 300oz. cocktails and 100oz. water, right? Which means 150oz. rum, 100oz. triple sec and 50oz fresh lemon juice. So I'd need 4.5 liters of rum, 3 liters of triple sec and 1.5 liters of fresh lemon juice, plus 3 liters of bottled water. Did I get that right? Before I compute the others, let me know if I'm crazy here.

For rocks drinks, I don't think you need to pre-dilute. The chances are that you're going to be using crappy, wet shell ice and the drink will dilute out pretty quickly just from sitting on the ice. Especially if you're planning on pre-pouring a bunch of them and having them sitting out on a table for people to pick up, or if people might be circulating with trays of pre-poured drinks, there is more a danger of over-dilution than there is under-dilution. A 3:2:1 drink made with 80 proof booze, 60 proof liqueur liqueur and zero proof citrus won't be all that boozy to begin with, and should dilute down pretty quickly on the ice. If you find that they're not diluting enough, it's better IMO to add the water on-site than it is to add it beforehand and risk that the drinks will turn out watery. Pre-diluting bottled cocktails is really mostly important for "up drinks" that are served with no ice and won't be shaken or stirred out on site, but rather poured directly from the bottle.

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I completely agree with Sam on this point. If you're trying to become the NYC Kosher Preschool Cocktail Party King, which you clearly are, then don't dilute at all, and your guests will have the first good drink with crappy wet shell ice they've ever had in their lives. It will blow their minds.

Chris Amirault

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Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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Okay, so nix the vodka and find some Bourbon. The vendor we're using doesn't have the Old Williamsburg but is Evan Williams acceptable? Use Pom/sugar syrup as a garnish. Check.

Now, if I go undiluted on the missing link then what is the size of the pour? I think we'll probably order those stemless martini glasses for the two non-Champagne cocktails. I'm pretty sure the glasses have a capacity of 8 ounces. Assuming crap ice in the glass, is the pour around 4 ounces or what?

I've written some draft text for an explanatory card that we can put copies of on the bar or hand out at check-in. There may have to be some ingredient changes after I go out this weekend and see what kinds of kosher bitters and syrups are on the market.

Dinner, Drinks & Dice

Cocktail Menu

Our mixology team has labored mightily to develop three specialty cocktails in honor of this evening. We hope you'll try one of each!

THE JULIO IGLESIAS. Named for our favorite Hispanic-Jewish musician, this cocktail was inspired by the Paloma, a popular Mexican alternative to the Margarita. Usually made with grapefruit, we switched to pineapple in honor of those taking Lipitor. We added a little lime to balance the pineapple, and some ginger for bite. Contains silver tequila, pineapple juice, fresh lime juice, lime cordial and ginger.

THE HIGH BIDDER. The darkest and booziest of our specialty drinks, this cocktail has been know to encourage big spending. Contains dark rum, triple sec and fresh lemon juice.

THE GUITAR PLAYER. In honor of our favorite guitar-playing spiritual leader, this bubbly cocktail will have you rocking and rolling all night long. Contains California sparkling wine, blood-orange bitters and Bourbon, topped off

with Pomegranate syrup.

*Also available at the bar: vodka, gin, assorted mixers, soft drinks, red and white wine*

Continuing to seek input.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Now, if I go undiluted on the missing link then what is the size of the pour? I think we'll probably order those stemless martini glasses for the two non-Champagne cocktails. I'm pretty sure the glasses have a capacity of 8 ounces. Assuming crap ice in the glass, is the pour around 4 ounces or what?

Since these drinks are on the rocks, why wouldn't you just use standard small rocks glasses?

If by "stemless Martini glasses" you mean something with a "V" shape -- this is terrible for drinks with ice.

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Okay so standard small rocks glasses. How big are they, and how big does that make the pour?

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Okay, so assuming I have the power to specify 6-ounce rocks glasses, how big does that make the pour per cocktail? I need to figure that out so I can compute the quantities for purchase. (Last year I tried to specify a certain size Champagne flute but what showed up was a couple of ounces larger -- there's only so much control one has in this sort of situation.)

Once we figure that out I still need to figure out quantities for the other two cocktails too...

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Any chance of Pisco? It would make a interesting spirit base for the Champagne cocktail in lieu of cognac...and it's something most people don't see every day.

True rye and true bourbon wake delight like any great wine...dignify man as possessing a palate that responds to them and ennoble his soul as shimmering with the response.

DeVoto, The Hour

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Ah, Raul Julia, be still my heart! You mean Raul Jewlia? But keep in mind he wasn't Mexican, so maybe you should find a nice Puerto Rican rum for his drink? I mean, you don't want to spread misinformation and be caught with huevos on your face.

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I have to investigate the Pisco situation to see if it has certification and, if it does, to see if I can get it from our vendor.

In other news I found Stirring's blood orange bitters with an O-U at Whole Foods. Is that an acceptable product?

Whole Foods also had "ginger juice" but not certified kosher so that search continues.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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In other news I found Stirring's blood orange bitters with an O-U at Whole Foods. Is that an acceptable product?

Stirrings bitters have no alcohol, so they lack the intensity, let alone complexity, of other brands. By a long shot. Like, you wouldn't dash them but use them by the spoonful.

Christopher

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No joy on Pisco.

Pisco is a grape-based product (under another name it could be called "Peruvian brandy") so that's not a surprise.

Steven, I'd count on 3-4 ounce pours depending on the size of the glass. I just filled an 8 ounce tumbler with ice and poured in measures of water. 3 ounces looked a little bit light, and wouldn't have wanted to put in any more than 4 ounces. 3.5 ounces might have been perfect. Ice takes up plenty of room.

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Stirrings bitters have no alcohol, so they lack the intensity, let alone complexity, of other brands. By a long shot. Like, you wouldn't dash them but use them by the spoonful.

I noticed the lack of alcohol but figured in the Champagne cocktail with the Bourbon that wouldn't be a problem. But I've never tasted the product so I wasn't aware of the intensity/complexity issue. Do Stirrings bitters just suck or will they work well enough as part of a Bourbon-and-bitters mixture for a Champagne cocktail?

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Stirrings bitters have no alcohol, so they lack the intensity, let alone complexity, of other brands. By a long shot. Like, you wouldn't dash them but use them by the spoonful.

I noticed the lack of alcohol but figured in the Champagne cocktail with the Bourbon that wouldn't be a problem. But I've never tasted the product so I wasn't aware of the intensity/complexity issue. Do Stirrings bitters just suck or will they work well enough as part of a Bourbon-and-bitters mixture for a Champagne cocktail?

Might be worth trying, since you know it's certified, and I wouldn't expect it'd be bad, but I just wonder how much of it you'd have to use to make it come through. At $6 or so per 12oz bottle, if you need to use as much of a 1/2 oz per cocktail, you may as well go with Aperol, which I do believe is kosher, and brings a good bit more complexity and bite to the table.

Christopher

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Aperol sounds like a really good idea. I know our vendor carries it. I didn't know it was kosher and can't find anything online on that. But maybe I'll walk over and look at a bottle. If we use Aperol, how should it be deployed?

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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If you can swing it, Audrey Saunders's Intro to Aperol is a fantastic "gateway to gin" drink:

2 oz Aperol

1 oz gin (Beefeater)

3⁄4 lemon juice

scant 1⁄4 simple syrup

dash Angostura (or Fernet Branca)

ETA can't find any kosher indications on label I have.

Edited by Chris Amirault (log)

Chris Amirault

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Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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I wonder how it will turn out if I make a mixture of Aperol and Bourbon, put a sugar cube in the bottom of a Champagne flute, pour an ounce of the Aperol/Bourbon mixture over the sugar cube, top with Champagne and garnish with Pom syrup out of a squeeze bottle. Would that totally suck? I guess I need to experiment.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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I'm leaning toward suck. Look, if post people have never had Aperol before, you could just pour 1 oz of it over a cube, fill with sparkler, and twist lemon on top. It'll be crisp, elegant, balanced, and unweird -- just the way to introduce them to it.

Chris Amirault

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Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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I guess I'm just not comprehending the necessary alcohol content of a Champagne cocktail. Don't you need something to bump it up higher than the 12 or so percent that Aperol and Champagne provide? Or is that plenty?

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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If I did a straight Aperol Champagne cocktail, the pomegranate syrup could migrate over to the tequila drink for tequila, pineapple, lime, ginger (though I still haven't found a ginger syrup), garnished with pomegranate syrup. I'd just have to figure out the ratios.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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I guess I'm just not comprehending the necessary alcohol content of a Champagne cocktail. Don't you need something to bump it up higher than the 12 or so percent that Aperol and Champagne provide? Or is that plenty?

No "necessary alcohol content" to be a cocktail: there are weaker and stronger types. Having a variety of strengths might be appealing for some folks -- unless this crowd is hellbent on getting bent.

Chris Amirault

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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