Apricot Cooler

Coolers:

Apricot Cooler
The Juice of 1/2 Lemon or 1 Lime. (Juice of 1/2 Lemon and 1/2 Lime)
2 Dashes Grenadine. (1 teaspoon Small Hand Foods Grenadine)
1 Liqueur Glass Apricot Brandy. (1 1/2 oz Brizard Apry Apricot Liqueur)
Shake well, strain into long tumbler and fill with soda water.

My dependence on Hugo Ensslin continues into the next section. The Apricot Cooler appears to come from his influential 1916 cocktail book, “Recipes for Mixed Drinks”. In it, he gives the recipe as:

Juice of ½ Lemon; Juice of ½ Lime; 2 dashes Grenadine Syrup; ½ Drink Apricot Brandy. Shake in a mixing glass with cracked ice, strain into a Collins glass, add a cube of ice and fill up with Club Soda.

And as with most of the Fizzes, while the Savoy Cocktail book calls for, “Juice of 1/2 Lemon OR 1 Lime”, Ensslin calls for “Juice of 1/2 Lemon AND 1/2 Lime”.

In the case of the Apricot Cooler, the additional citrus doesn’t do much to moderate the rather soda-pop-esque nature of the Apricot Cooler. The way this tastes, the Apricot Cooler would not be at all out of place on the shelf with the various Bartles & Jaymes flavored beverages.

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the drinks in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, the, uh, Sauterne Cup.

Texas Fizz

Texas Fizz
The Juice of 1/4 Orange. (Juice 1/2 Tangerine)
The Juice of 1/4 Lemon. (Juice 1/2 Lime)
1 Teaspoonful Powdered Sugar. (Generous teaspoon Rich Simple Syrup)
1 Glass Dry Gin. (2 oz North Shore Distiller’s Gin No. 6)
Shake well, strain into medium size glass and fill with syphon soda water.

I am not quite sure why exactly this is a “Texas” Fizz. I guess they do grow a fair amount of citrus there, though I more strongly associate them with Grapefruit.

I massaged it a bit, using the juice of half a Tangerine and half a lime, instead of the 1/4 Lemon and 1/4 Orange it calls for. Ended up pretty tasty.

When I started making these I was still using water from a Britta Pitcher and often found the ice had off flavors. We recently invested in a new more effective filter which attaches to the faucet. The ice is way better. It’s funny, you generally think of cocktails as having fairly big flavors, a little off flavor from the ice isn’t going to ruin anything. Most modern, over driven cocktails probably fall into that category, there’s so much going on you probably wouldn’t notice some off flavor from the ice. On the other hand, with a four ingredient, fairly subtle drink like this and these fizzes, any off flavors from ice, or anything else, are right up there in front.

The easiest way I’ve ever found to find out what your ice tastes like is to pour a few ounces of cold water into your cocktail shaker. Add ice. Shake and strain it into a glass just as if you were making a cocktail. Does the chilled water taste good? If it doesn’t, that same ice isn’t going to be contributing anything good to your cocktails either.

So how about the Texas Fizz?

It’s kind of good, refreshing and light. It’s not a mind blowing cocktail, but it’s also not blowing out your taste buds with your first sip. You drink it and think, “That was nice, what’s next?”

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the drinks in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, the, uh, Sauterne Cup.

South Side Fizz

First, just a reminder that Sunday, August 28, 2011, is our monthly exercise in folly, Savoy Cocktail Book Night at Alembic Bar. If any of the cocktails, (they also have a great beer selection,) on this blog have captured your fancy, stop by after 6 and allow the skilled bartenders, (and me,) to make them for you. It is always a fun time.

South Side Fizz
The Juice of 1/2 Lemon. (Juice 1/2 Lemon, Juice 1/2 Lime)
1/2 Tablespoonful Powdered Sugar. (1-ish Tablespoon Rich Simple Syrup, or to taste)
1 Glass Gin. (2 oz Anchor Junipero Gin)

Shake well strain into medium size glass and fill with syphon soda water.  Add fresh mint leaves.

As I noted a couple years ago, The South Side, even though it is often now served without soda, has its roots in a Fizz. That is, a Gin Fizz with mint and sprigs of mint for garnish.

The recipe for the South Side Fizz is a little oblique as far as instructions go.

My advice as far as METHOD goes:

Combine Gin, Citrus, Syrup, and a few Mint Leaves in a shaker tin. Shake well and fine strain into an 8 oz Juice or Fizz Glass. Top with Soda Water and garnish with fresh sprigs of mint.

Any drink with leaves of fresh herbs in the shaker tin should always be fine strained. Little green specks of mint look no good in anyone’s teeth, especially when they’re trying to impress their date.

The South Side is another classic cocktail, which really only became possible to make properly with the advent of the modern bar and the return of fresh mint and citrus to the bar set up. It is truly one of the GREAT drinks and a crowd pleaser, tunable for almost any guest, even those that think they don’t like Gin. Also one of my wife’s favorites, give it a try on yours.

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the drinks in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, the, uh, Sauterne Cup.

BOTW–Autumnal

First, just a reminder that Sunday, August 28, 2011, is our monthly exercise in folly, Savoy Cocktail Book Night at Alembic Bar. If any of the cocktails, (they also have a great beer selection,) on this blog have captured your fancy, stop by after 6 and allow the skilled bartenders, (and me,) to make them for you. It is always a fun time.

Friends gave us a bunch of really awesome Meyer Lemons. What better to do than to turn them into Lemon Merengue Pie?

Stillwater Autumnal

This deep amber hued ale takes it’s inspiration from Germany while still nodding to the Belgian farmhouse tradition. The base is comprised of German two-row, wheat, Cara-Munich, and roasted barley. Generously hopped with a blend of Perle, Spalt, and Hallertau Mittelfrüh and fermented with a rustic Belgian farmhouse ale yeast. These elements together provide a melange of earth and fruit aromas backed with hints of caramel with a dry clean finish.

I hadn’t researched a lot about Stillwater, aside from trying a couple of their bottles when I saw them in liquor stores. Interestingly, turns out, the brewer is a “Gypsy Brewer”. He rents overflow capacity from breweries and then visits and brews collaborative brews with them.

‘Gypsy Brewer’ Spreads Craft Beer Gospel (on npr)

We’d tried their sage spiked Saison Cellar Door before, but I think we liked Autumnal even more. It was pleasing and easy to drink.

Risking life, limb and fingertips running some amazing patty pan squash through the ceramic mandolin.

Balsamic vinaigrette, marjoram, arugula, and small tomatoes.

On the plate!

Roasted a pork tenderloin on top of a winter squash with onions and potatoes.

Got advice on this wine from one of the wine guys at K&L Wines. 29 Songs is a big ass Northern California Syrah, juicy and delicious. The wine guy suggested it, “wasn’t exactly a food wine,” but we enjoyed it with our dinner anyway.

Unfortunately, the lemon meringue pie didn’t turn out quite as well as I was hoping. For some reason the custard didn’t quite set. On the other hand, the Meringue was awesome. Ah well, nothing wrong with Lemon flavored version of, “œufs à la neige” in a pie crust! Great dinner anyway!

Silver Fizz

First, just a reminder that Sunday, August 28, 2011, is our monthly exercise in folly, Savoy Cocktail Book Night at Alembic Bar. If any of the cocktails, (they also have a great beer selection,) on this blog have captured your fancy, stop by after 6 and allow the skilled bartenders, (and me,) to make them for you. It is always a fun time.

Silver Fizz
The Juice of 1/2 Lemon. (Juice 1/2 Meyer Lemon, Juice 1/2 Lime)
1/2 Tablespoonful Powdered Sugar. (Generous Teaspoon Rich Simple Syrup)
l Glass Gin. (2 oz Junipero Gin)
The White of 1 Egg.
Shake well, strain into medium size glass and fill with syphon soda water.

Do I need to mention that the recipe for this drink was published in Hugo Ensslin’s 1916 “Recipes for Mixed Drinks before the Savoy Cocktail Book? His recipe is minimal: “Made same as plain Gin Fizz, adding the white of an egg.”

I have nothing against Egg White in Fizzes, but just to reiterate, a “plain Gin Fizz” does NOT have Egg White.

However, a Silver Fizz DOES have egg white.

All those Egg White containing Gin Fizzes being served at modern fancy cocktail bars are, in fact, Silver Fizzes. And fine, fine drinks they are indeed.

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the drinks in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, the, uh, Sauterne Cup.

Garden Update 08-21-2011

Since we had the serious prune back things have been coming along.

Some signs of life.

Salvia ‘Hot Lips’ has started to bloom.

Agastache ‘Apricot’ is hanging in there. Dead headed flower sprouts and now doing better than ever.

The Greek Oregano is still doing OK. The one current casualty appears to be the English Thyme, which seems to slowly be succumbing to some sort of wilting rot.

The Bleeding Heart Vine has come back very strongly, with more light, it’s doing great. I’m also glad to see I’m not the only one in the neighborhood to appreciate it.

One of the Rose bushes has even decided to flower!

The Raccoons haven’t yet managed to kill all the Blue Star Creeper, by digging between the paving stones looking for grubs.

I think this is a Borage Seedling from some seeds I scattered a few weeks ago.

Probably I am the only one to get excited about non-vascular plants, but this is some volunteer Liverwort.

And finally, the Julep mint is not dead yet. A little floppy, I may have to prune the nearby Salvia a bit so it can get more light.

Ruby Fizz

First, just a reminder that Sunday, August 28, 2011, is our monthly exercise in folly, Savoy Cocktail Book Night at Alembic Bar. If any of the cocktails, (they also have a great beer selection,) on this blog have captured your fancy, stop by after 6 and allow the skilled bartenders, (and me,) to make them for you. It is always a fun time.

Ruby Fizz
The Juice of 1/2 Lemon. (Juice 1/2 Meyer Lemon)
1/2 Tablespoonful Powdered Sugar. (1/2 tsp Rich Simple Syrup)
The White of 1 Egg. (1 Egg White)
2 Dashes Raspberry or Grenadine syrup. (1 TBSP Small Hand Foods Grenadine)
1 Glass Sloe Gin. (1 1/2 oz Plymouth Sloe Gin)
Shake well, strain into medium size glass and fill with syphon soda water.
Starting to sound a bit like a Broken record! This is another Fizz from Hugo Ensslin’s 1916 “Recipes for Mixed Drinks”.

His recipe is pretty close to the Savoy recipe, except it does suggest Raspberry Syrup, not give you the choice between it and Grenadine: Juice ½ Lemon; 1 teasponful Powdered Sugar; White 1 Egg; 2 dashes Raspberry Syrup; 1 drink Sloe Gin. Shake and serve as directed for Gin Fizz.

I bounced the recipe a bit more towards the grenadine and a bit less towards the sugar.

One of the Fizzes we frequently get orders for on Savoy Nights, I never really feel any qualms at all about making it, as long as we have Plymouth Sloe Gin in the house. It is really a very tasty drink.

Though for some reason, I always think it has Port Wine in it until I look it up. I guess it is the “Ruby” in the name, as in Ruby Port.

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the drinks in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, the, uh, Sauterne Cup.

Royal Fizz

Royal Fizz
The Juice of 1/2 Lemon. (Juice 1/2 Meyer Lemon, Juice 1/2 Lime)
1/2 Tablespoonful Powdered Sugar. (1 TBSP Rich Simple Syrup)
1 Glass Gin. (2 oz Junipero Gin)
1 Egg. (1 Egg)
Shake well, strain into medium size glass and fill with syphon soda water.

Yet another Fizz from Hugo Ensslin’s 1916 “Recipes for Mixed Drinks”, about this Fizz he says, “Made same as plain Gin Fizz, adding the whole of one Egg.”

I do think a whole egg is a little much, with modern eggs as large as they are. Suggest hunting down “Medium” eggs or even just using half a Large or Extra-Large Egg.

Like cream drinks, whole egg drinks sometimes draw the askance look from those perusing the book.

Personally, I like Flips and their Citrus laden brethern, the Egg Sour and Royal Fizz. Heck, even the ones with just Egg Yolks, like the Bosom Caresser are kind of nice.

Well, as they say, your mileage may vary.

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the drinks in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, the, uh, Sauterne Cup.

BOTW–Hellhound on My Ale

So this is another of Dogfish’s big bottles, Hellhound. It’s basically one of their IPAs with some Lemon Peel added to “the whirlpool” in their parlance.

It’s their second collaboration with Sony Music, the first was the Bitches Brew, an OK beer. This one is supposed to be celebrating the legacy of Robert Johnson and Blind Lemon Jefferson.

And as much as I like some Dogfish Head Beers, Robert Johnson and Blind Lemon Jefferson, unfortunately “Robert Johnson’s Hellhound on my Ale” is not really very good.

It basically tastes like you poured their 90 minute IPA over a couple crushed Lemonhead candies.

Sometimes it gets too late, and you don’t even feel like having dinner. What is the solution? Popcorn!

Ms Sweetpea agrees and would like to bat some popcorn kernels around the kitchen.

Monty just wants to eat them, even though they aren’t very good for him.

Pineapple Fizz

Pineapple Fizz
2 Tablespoonsful Pineapple Juice.
1/2 Tablespoonful Powdered Sugar.
1 Glass Bacardi Rum.
Shake well, strain into medium size glass and fill with syphon soda water.

So I asked for a Pineapple Fizz at a restaurant in San Francisco.

The recipe didn’t seem entirely promising to me, but the restaurant has fresh pressed pineapple juice, so I was curious to see how that would work.

I said something to the bartender like, “Hey, wanna make a Savoy Cocktail? The Pineapple Fizz is Rum, 2 tablespoons of pineapple juice, and sugar. I leave the rum up to you. It is my feeling it might need a little extra tartness, but I’m not sure.”

He was interested in the idea.

He walked to his station down the bar. Gave the idea some thought, looked up, and came back.

He asked, “This is a fizz, right?”

To which I said, “Yes,” and as he was walking away, immediately thought, “Oh crap, he’s going to put egg white in the drink.”

So we ended up with Barbancourt 8 Year old Rum, Pineapple Juice, Lime Juice, Pineapple Gum Syrup, Lime, and Egg White.

With similar proportions to Heaven’s Dog’s Gin Fizz Tropical, we both admitted this version of the Pineapple Fizz is just not very good. The combination of juice and pineapple gum syrup puts the pineapple out there too strongly. Instead of being a light refreshing Fizz, it was tart and cloying at the same time, in the way that only too much pineapple can be. Sits on your stomach badly. They can’t all be winners.

Though to be honest, I think there might be an OK drink here, but more of a slightly pineapple-ey Rum and Soda Water kind of thing than what most people think of as a modern, intense, citrus driven Fizz. And as much as I like Barbancourt 8, I think the unaged Barbancourt might be a better choice. To be continued…

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the drinks in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, the, uh, Sauterne Cup.