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Liquor Cabinet


pgoodman
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I have too many things to list,(I think I have everything known to man in my bar) but those more knowledgeable than I will chime in here.

If I were building a bar I'd have the following assume all brands are decent brands

Grand Marnier

1 bottle Skyy vodka

1 bottle Pearl vodka

1 bottle Noilly Pratt vermouth

1 bottle Canadian Club or Crown Royal

1bottle red vermouth

1 Bottle scotch - Glenfiddich or Strathisla or something decent but not outrageous

1 Bottle Rum

1 bottle Baileys Irish Cream

1 bottle Frangelico

! bottle gin (can't help you with the brand cause I don't drink this stuff, and I'd have to go check the bar to see what we have)

1 bottle Jack Daniels (for when Mayhaw Man comes to visit)

1 bottle 10 year old tawny port - taylor fladgate is decent for starting out

1 bottle sherry - I prefer a cream sherry

Grenedine

Bitters

This will get you started nicely

Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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In addition to some basics (vodka, gin, rum etc), I would suggest picking 4 or 5 drinks to make your specialty, and then keep your bar stocked with the liquers etc needed for those drinks. By concentrating on a few cocktails you can perfect your recipe/technique for these, while avoiding a mistake I'm definately guilty of: filling your apartment with bottles of stuff you hardly ever use!

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As others have said, it depends on what kinds of drinks you like to make, etc. Here's what I would want to have in any home bar for mixing:

  • Reasonably priced premium vodka (e.g., Skyy, Luksusowa, etc)
  • Reasonably priced gin (e.g., Bombay, Gordon's)
  • High end gin(s) for martinis and other special applications (e.g., Boodle's, Hendrick's, Junipero, Tanqueray Ten)
  • Mixing bourbon (Maker's Mark, accept no substitutes)
  • Rye (Old Overholt is good, Van Winkle and Sazerac are better but more expensive)
  • Blended Scotch (e.g., Famous Grouse)
  • Silver Tequilla (e.g., Cuervo - anything 100% blue agave being best)
  • Silver Rum (e.g., Bacardi)
  • White and Red Vermouth (Vya is best, but Noilly Pratt for white and Cinzano for red is good too)
  • Brandy
  • Absinthe Substitute (e.g., Pernod, Ricard, Herbsaint, etc.)
  • Cointreau
  • Grand Marniner
  • Crème de Cacao
  • A nut-flavored liqueur
  • Maraschino (an ingredient in many classic cocktails, Luxardo is the best)
  • Bitters: Angostura, Peychaud's, orange

These will allow you to make a very large percentage of the drinks out there. As you refine your tastes and preferences and see other recipes you might like to try, some of these things may drop out of your personal liquor cabinet and you may add others. If you like herbal drinks, you may add things like Chartreuse, Bénédictine, Drambuie. If you like sweeter, fruiter drinks you may end up acquiring more flavored vodkas and liqueurs like Chambord, etc. You may want to add things like Calvados, Cachaça and Pisco. If you like bitter herbal flavors, you might add Campari, Carpano Punt e Mes, or even Branca Menta.

--

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I would think the basis of your bar contents should consist of whatever you and your circle of friends enjoy drinking.

You can start with Brandy, Scotch, Vodka, Gin, Tequila and Rum - whatever quality you can afford, and later add your favourite liqueurs. I find that nowadays few people go for Drambuie or Cointreau anymore - and absolutely noone ever wants Creme de Menthe either. But it's a question of taste, and geographical fashions.

Kahlua is better than Tia Maria.

Sambuca is extremely versatile and popular among us Italians, as is a good Limoncello.

Pisco is a wonderful Peruvian grape spirit - Pisco Sours are much in demand.

I second Drinkboy's advice: many bartenders keep a stash of top-quality syrups, to which they add Vodka to obtain the odd Curacao or Creme de Cacao (and even the occasional Creme de Menthe) to add to cocktails. You could find a bar supplier online - these are incredibly useful to have on hand, without having to invest in the expensive liqueurs.

These syrups can also be successfully used in out of this world desserts.

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I would recommend Labrot & Graham's Woodford Reserve - best bourbon I've ever tasted. Husband loves it.

*****

"Did you see what Julia Child did to that chicken?" ... Howard Borden on "Bob Newhart"

*****

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I find that nowadays few people go for Drambuie or Cointreau anymore - and absolutely noone ever wants Creme de Menthe either. But it's a question of taste, and geographical fashions.

Interesting - Cointreau is one of the liqueurs my husband and I consider essential to have on hand (can't make a proper Sidecar without it), and we're both quite fond of Drambuie. It's a bit pricy, though, so I've been thinking about trying a "faux Drambuie" recipe I found online. (I blame the infused vodka thread for getting me thinking about making liqueurs at home. :biggrin: )

"The dinner table is the center for the teaching and practicing not just of table manners but of conversation, consideration, tolerance, family feeling, and just about all the other accomplishments of polite society except the minuet." - Judith Martin (Miss Manners)

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Interesting - Cointreau is one of the liqueurs my husband and I consider essential to have on hand (can't make a proper Sidecar without it), and we're both quite fond of Drambuie. It's a bit pricy, though, so I've been thinking about trying a "faux Drambuie" recipe I found online. (I blame the infused vodka thread for getting me thinking about making liqueurs at home.  :biggrin: )

I agree with your Cointreau assessment -- it (or triple sec) is an ingredient in so many cocktails, I'd consider it essential. Although I've been using Marie Brizard Triple Sec instead -- it's a touch sweeter and slightly lower proof, but considerably less expensive.

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I agree with your Cointreau assessment -- it (or triple sec) is an ingredient in so many cocktails, I'd consider it essential.

Yea. If you want to make any classic cocktails, triple sec is a must (and Cointreau is the best brand of triple sec -- although it is expensive).

. . . absolutely noone ever wants Creme de Menthe either.

I got an interesting idea from Audrey Saunders: try using Branca Menta in place of crème de menthe.

--

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I have just tried Boru Vodka...you all may have seen ads for it. I believe it is new, it is irish. It is pretty good, a little better than Absolut I would say. I seem to think vodka is the most essential bottle in the liquor cabinet as most people will find a drink they like to have that has vodka.

Has anyone tried Iceberg Vodka...i think that is the name of it- it is made using icebergs off of Newfoundland, Canada.

Paul Goodman

Seattle Eats Out

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As life goes on, one should add to one's stock and the only decent objective is to have everything that could possibly be wished.

It's a gratifying fact of life that you can only drink one drink at a time. I.e., whether you have twelve gins or a hundred whiskies or just one of both, you'll use the same amount.

It therefore makes sense, in home bars, to have as wide a variety as possible - the expense is cumulatively the same but the choice is always more pleasant.

The truth is, once you've established a generous selection, the price of replacements is dictated by popularity and is, in essence, the same as if you had only one gin; one vodka; one cognac or whatever.

At home we can offer a far wider range than exists in even the best cocktail bars, where commercial considerations are often taken into account.

Spirits have the great bonus of keeping well for a long time and so it seems silly to treat them as if they were wine. It's true that guests often prefer the more well-known brands - mimicing their ordering behaviour in bars - but the sight of a an expansive selection will entice them to try the unfamiliar and untried.

Even with the most ordinary cocktails - Margaritas, for instance - it's interesting to offer a few dozen different tequilas along with a variety of orangey liqueurs (Cointreau; the several Grand Marniers; Mandarine liqueur; Mexican and French "triple secs") to spike.

Rather than assemble a "basic bar", it's far more rewarding to offer the greatest possible selection, knowing that the cost is the same. It's only a question of time. Sure, it looks luxurious but, when you think of it, your guests' choice consumes the same amount of spirits and has almost no effect on the final financial tally since - I repeat! - nobody can drink two drinks at the same time, so the total expenditure works out as being just about the same as if you only bought five brands and kept replenishing them.

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Even with the most ordinary cocktails - Margaritas, for instance - it's interesting to offer a few dozen different tequilas along with  a variety of orangey liqueurs (Cointreau; the several Grand Marniers; Mandarine liqueur; Mexican  and French "triple secs") to spike.

Can I come to your house for a drink please?

regards,

trillium

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got plenty of bottles in the cellar that aren't being drunk yet many of which are open. But what i have upstairs and is being drunk is:

R&A Golf Club 12yo Malt Whisky

VAT 69 Whisky

Cockspur VSOR Rum

Torres 10yo Imperial (Spanish) Brandy

Green Chartreuse

Cock o'the North

Martell VS Cognac

A bottle made up of 3 separate bottles (sour cherry with vodka, huckleberry liqueur with grappa, blood orange with vodka)

Havana Club Anejo reserva Rum

Tullamore Dew Whiskey

Jim Beam Black 8yo

26yo Jamaican Rum

Mount Gay Extra Old Rum

Mount Gay Eclipse Rum

Bacardi Reserva Anejo Especial Rum

Macallan 1974

Demerara Rum 19yo

Smirnoff Red

Smirnoff Black

Ricard

Beefeater

Absolute Kurant (!!)

Glenfarclas 1965

Archers Peach Scnapps

Curacao Triple Sec

Chesnut Liqueur

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