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Savory Cocktail


detlefchef
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Fishy-tasting drinks seem appealing to me.

Try making your next bloody mary with clamato juice. :smile:

Judy Jones aka "moosnsqrl"

Sharing food with another human being is an intimate act that should not be indulged in lightly.

M.F.K. Fisher

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Fishy-tasting drinks seem appealing to me.

Try making your next bloody mary with clamato juice. :smile:

...and you know what's also really good in a Bloody Caesar? a tbsp or horseradish, stirred in, or a splash of caper brine (from the bottle)... :wub:

"The cure for anything is salt water: sweat, tears, or the ocean."

--Isak Dinesen

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I run an annual cocktail competition in our group of bars and this year yielded, one Butternut squash drink, one red onion/balsamic vinegar reduction drink and the winners recipe contained Capsicums or red peppers as I know them.

There are lots of possibilities.

I tried a cheese based martini once with Applewood smoked.... not nice!

Cheers

Ian

Edited by thebartrainer (log)

Vist Barbore to see the Scottish scene.

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Still, celery juice is promising, as is cucumber-- like that great juice you get when you salt and grate cucumbers.

I'm not a great fan of cocktails that contain much in the way of non alcoholic ingredients (other than a splash of lemon or lime juice) so I'd get the celery taste from an eau de vie de celeri (Distillerie Biercee do a good one) rather than celery juice.

Cucumber flavoured vodka, dry sherry and perhaps Sputnik's Horseradish flavoured vodka could work well with this. Garnish with a tiny baby squid.

Gethin

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One potential reason that there aren't more cocktails covering "meaty" or "umami"  savory elements is that that area has historically been covered with wine. It just might be that people with a greater tendency to be drawn to that element tend to be wine drinkers, especially red wine drinkers.

I'd have to say that, in general, wine lies squarely in the non-savory drink category. Certainly there are those with meaty qualities, but they are ultimately a fruit based beverage.

I'm not sure what being a "fruit based beverage" necessarily has to do with being sweet or savory. Sure there are a number of wines that are sweet and a whole class of wines that fit squarely into the "sweet" category - i.e. dessert wines, but the majority of fine wines, especially fine red wines are squarely in the "savory" category, especially if "savory" is defined by anything that is not sweet as appears to be the case within this topic. The better red wines certainly contain many nuances of savoriness even for a less broadly defined usage of the word. I enjoy cocktails, but when I really want something savory to go with a meal i prefer an appropriate wine. My point was that the relative popularity of wine for this purpose may be a reason for the relative dearth of "savory" cocktails.

The point may be moot anyway as the lines between savory and sweet even in the food world continue to blur. The real issue is a question of balance anyway. I don't want anything that is pure salt or pure bitter or pure sour or pure sweet, but I love them all when combined in the proper balance. That balance is determined by circumstance. I prefer less sweet before or during most of my meal, but that will shift towards the end to following a meal when sweetness becomes my pleasure. Even then, it requires some balance so as not to be cloying.

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

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How about snapper soup with a heavier than usual dose of sherry?  That is certainly savory, and likely delicious.  Don't know that I'd want to sip it from a conical glass... but it would be savory and boozy.

...or a little lobster bisque with the same treatment. Now that is savory! :laugh:

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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If you think about it, humans don't drink very many things that aren't sweet -- some are more obviously sweet than others, and some are sweet and sour (wine, many cocktails, lemonade), or sweet and bitter (beer, tonic, cola), but water's about the only non-sweet thing we drink. (Coffee and tea are exceptions, but of course a lot of people sweeten them. Plus, we drink them hot usually, which makes a difference, I think).

I've been thinking about this post, and have decided that this is not my experience at all.

Our family doesn't like sweet drinks, especially not with meals. JAZ says that "water's about the only non-sweet thing we drink." I guess that "sweet" is in the tongue of the taster, but the fact is that almost every consumable foodstuff except water has some natural sugars in it (I think so, anyway, although I admit I'm not a chemist and could be wrong) but by our commonly-accepted definitions, you don't call things "sweet" unless the sugar has an overriding influence in the taste of that particular thing. You wouldn't call an onion tart a "sweet" just because onions have some natural sugar. And I don't think that dry wines fall into the "sweet" category either. In fact, isn't that the very definition of "dry wine"?

As a child, we were never allowed sweet drinks, unless it was somebody's birthday, or other special "kid" occasion. At our house, the kids routinely got water, or milk, which we drank a lot of, and we all still do. Our juice of choice at the breakfast table was usually tomato juice or V8 with an extra squeeze of lemon or lime. The adults drank iced tea or iced coffee (not "hot usually" with meals), unsweetened, or beer or dry wine. We lived for four years in Germany, and for "nice dinners" served at the dining room table, as in the households of our European neighbors, my parents gave us kids dry wine, greatly watered down via some mysterious formula associated with our age...more wine as we grew older. And on summer afternoons, the neighborhood ladies often got together to visit over tall glasses of iced dry white wine with soda water and a twist.

I don't consider any of those a "sweet drink," although most obviously contain some natural sugars.

And as far as "savory cocktails" go, assuming (by that somewhat odd nomenclature) one simply means "non-sweet," I would put all of the "booze & water" ones (Scotch & water, Bourbon & water, etc.) in that category, along with the "booze & soda" and "booze mist" and "booze rocks" and "shot of booze with beer back." And certainly the many drinks that are made with various vegetable juices, bouillons and broths, raw eggs, etc., with no added sugar. A Salty Dog may be sweet to some folk, but to me, it's tart and salty. And although I've never tended bar and again well may be wrong, I'd even go so far as to say that I believe if you ask the average bartender which are his biggest sellers, sweet or non-sweet drinks, he'd say "non-sweet." Although exactly what he'd mean by that is probably the crux of what we're discussing.

But in my opinion, I think there are lots of "savory" things "humans...drink," including cocktails. I suppose, like most things, it just depends upon one's definition.

Edited by Jaymes (log)

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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^^^^well put Jaymes. exactly what i was trying to say earlier.

detlechef: what do you mean by "savory?" meaty?

i mean, savory things can be awfully sweet. as Jaymes said, an onion tart is really sweet, but i would definitely label that as savory.

maybe it's really hard to make the distinction between "savory vs. sweet" in cocktails. perhaps we're better off speaking about them in more classic terms as far as sweetness goes: "sweet vs. dry?" then we can talk about a "savory" cocktail without worrying if there's any trace of sweetness to it?

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Cucumber flavoured vodka, dry sherry and perhaps Sputnik's Horseradish  flavoured vodka could work well with this. Garnish with a tiny baby squid.

That would be my idea of heaven. Not sure I would serve it to an unsuspecting guest though.

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How about snapper soup with a heavier than usual dose of sherry?  That is certainly savory, and likely delicious.  Don't know that I'd want to sip it from a conical glass... but it would be savory and boozy.

...or a little lobster bisque with the same treatment. Now that is savory! :laugh:

Last time I checked that would be soup in a cocktail glass, not a "cocktail", savory or otherwise.

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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At a resturant nearby, applewood, they make a savory onion martini, in which they roast off some onions, then infuse vodka with them for a few days. The resulting brew is then mixed with some worcestershire sauce and a dash of tabasco and served up.

It is very good.

John Deragon

foodblog 1 / 2

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I feel sorry for people that don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day -- Dean Martin

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Last time I checked that would be soup in a cocktail glass, not a "cocktail", savory or otherwise.

No. It would be boozy soup in a cocktail glass. That sounds like a savory cocktail to me. With the snapper or shellfish bisque maybe a smoky Laphroaig type thing would work well too... Some sherry, some scotch, and some soup might make a damn fine boozy savory thing.

Christopher D. Holst aka "cdh"

Learn to brew beer with my eGCI course

Chris Holst, Attorney-at-Lunch

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Last time I checked that would be soup in a cocktail glass, not a "cocktail", savory or otherwise.

No. It would be boozy soup in a cocktail glass. That sounds like a savory cocktail to me. With the snapper or shellfish bisque maybe a smoky Laphroaig type thing would work well too... Some sherry, some scotch, and some soup might make a damn fine boozy savory thing.

So you're suggesting booze with the soup as the secondary volume in the mix, yes? :hmmm:

Still seems strange to me. By this definition any soup paired with the "appropriate" liquor could be considered a savory cocktail. Sherry and Potage Saint-Germain anyone? Mmmmm...pureed pea martinis! puke.gif

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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Turtle soup without that splash of sherry is just not the same.

It is good to be a BBQ Judge.  And now it is even gooder to be a Steak Cookoff Association Judge.  Life just got even better.  Woo Hoo!!!

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by "savory" do you mean take some veal demi, splash it with vodka, serve up with a pickled garlic or asparagus? Define savory for us.

It is good to be a BBQ Judge.  And now it is even gooder to be a Steak Cookoff Association Judge.  Life just got even better.  Woo Hoo!!!

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Turtle soup without that splash of sherry is just not the same.

Right, but you're defining that and serving it as SOUP with a splash (your words) of sherry. What's being suggested here (I think) is the flip side of that - sherry with some soup to call it a savory "cocktail".

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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by "savory" do you mean take some veal demi, splash it with vodka, serve up with a pickled garlic or asparagus?  Define savory for us.

Actually, add a little lemon, Worsty and Tabasco, and you're darn close to a Bullshot.

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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Turtle soup without that splash of sherry is just not the same.

Right, but you're defining that and serving it as SOUP with a splash (your words) of sherry. What's being suggested here (I think) is the flip side of that - sherry with some soup to call it a savory "cocktail".

Well, detlefchef wants ideas for savory cocktails... I think the souped up booze model is about as close as we're going to get. A bloody mary is vodka + gazpacho. A bullshot is vodka + beef broth. The turtle soup and bisques are just extensions of that thought process...

Just about all booze except certain scotches have a sweet edge to them. To get the savory in there, you need to put it in there with something that brings it along and can overpower the sweet edge of the underlying liquor. I think it is the ethanol itself that has the sweetness I'm thinking of, so it is always there.

Running strongly savory salty soups through strainers to make them into smooth liquids and then mixing them with complementary booze is the only way to get a savory booze experience that I can think of.

Edited by cdh (log)

Christopher D. Holst aka "cdh"

Learn to brew beer with my eGCI course

Chris Holst, Attorney-at-Lunch

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I don't believe that savory has to be entirely absent of sweetness. BBQ is certainly on the savory side, but it's typically rather sweet. There are plenty of others. It's also been mentioned by some contrarian above that even sweet things have a touch of salt. None the less, there are certainly dishes that are primarily driven by sweet elements as well as dishes that are driven by the opposite (or savory elemtents). If one is to speak in complete absolutes, we're going to narrow things down to a miniscule level.

Frankly the boozy broth suggestions are quite strong. Given the number of restaurants serving small soup portions in shot glasses, it seems like a natural evolution. In fact, a great way to work these types of drinks in would be as a specific pairing to a dish. Say serving a small bowl of butternut squash and pumpkin seed oil soup with a shot of cumin , paprika aquavit on the side. I don't know, something like that.

I've also thought of working in Indian pickles and curry pastes into dry cocktails. We shook some tandori paste with some gin once and it was kind of cool.

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Now I'm picturing meat-infused vodka. The jars with pieces of fish, bacon and organ meats could look quite festive.

I've already used the pukey icon once. Don't make me go there again.

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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Now I'm picturing meat-infused vodka. The jars with pieces of fish, bacon and organ meats could look quite festive.

Well, I have seen some odd things steeping in Chinese liquors.

And, recent reviews of restaurants I've read have included things like "ham hock emulsion".

Layer your ham hock emulsion with pea soup and top it with creme de menthe. That'd be a hell of a pousse cafe.

You could call it, "Pig's Wings".

edit - thought of a name for the lovely cocktail.

Edited by eje (log)

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Erik Ellestad

If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck...

Bernal Heights, SF, CA

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sorry to be the contrarian! i think this is a great subject. i just wasn't sold on the idea that to make a "savory" cocktail just add a lot of salt and take away the sweetness. i can play this game now that we can admit that a savory cocktail could have some sweetness!

when i think of a bloody mary as gaspacho w/vodka (as cdh mentioned), i get much more open to that idea of booze+soup or booze+savory something. sure, use that roasted onion-infused vodka, add some beef drippings, a shot of angastura, and a bacon fat float (someone mentioned accidentally dripping bacon fat into a dry martini and loving it... maybe the "what i drank last night" thread)? hey, sounds outrageous, but might taste good! lot of work for a cocktail, though.

edited to add that beef drippings and bacon fat float might be a bit much now that i think of it.

Edited by lostmyshape (log)
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Maybe I missed it mentioned earlier but cheese seems to be a way to go. A couple of years back a friend of mine working at a high end resturant (that had an extensive cheese selection) as a bartender messed about with some sweeter cheeses. Marscapone, ricotta and the like.

How about a hot gogonzola, heavy cream and brandy drink? don't know if I would want to knock back a bunch of these, but...

A DUSTY SHAKER LEADS TO A THIRSTY LIFE

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