December 25, 2015

What I’m Drinking: The Abbey Cocktail

abbeyLooking for a nice drink to have today, after opening all those presents (or while, as the case may be). Try out this nicely-named-number, which not only is strong enough to balance out the sometimes hectic holiday days, but also has a healthy helping of orange juice, making it both a good breakfast drink and a boon in the cold and flu season. Just consider the suggestion my holiday gift to you! You can thank me later.

The Abbey Cocktail

Ice cubes
2 ounces Kur gin (if you have it! If not, be sad and use another awesome gin)
1-1/2 ounces freshly squeezed orange juice
2 dashes Scrappy’s orange bitters
Maraschino cherry, for garnish

1. Fill a cocktail shaker or mixing glass half full with ice cubes. Add the gin, orange juice, and bitters. Shake well.

2. Strain through a fine strainer into a cocktail glass. Garnish with the cherry. Have a happy holiday!

February 20, 2015

What I’m Drinking: Up North, Down South

This border-busting concoction combines a couple of ingredients that are from fairly different points on the compass: tequila (that’s the southern one), and Washington State’s own Skip Rock Distillery’s Spiced Apple liqueur. The former I’m guessing you know about, but the latter uses local Jonagold apples, and a little bit of sweet and spice, in a dandy manner – meaning, it’s a liqueur that lets the flavor shine through, one that makes a great pairing with tequila and other things. However, when making this cocktail with those two ingredients, I realized that the whole Mason/Dixon quandary was keeping it from fully delivering the awesome, and that I needed one or two last mediators to really make things hum. After some hemming and hawing (and by that I mean, testing and testing), two unexpected other ingredients fell into place: Lillet and Scrappy’s orange bitters. The end result is . . . well, try it and see (okay, a hint: it’s darn tasty).

upnorth-downsouth

Up North, Down South

Cracked ice
2 ounces tequila blanco
3/4 Skip Rock Spiced Apple liqueur
1/4 ounce Lillet
Dash Scrappy’s orange bitters

1. Fill a cocktail shaker or mixing glass halfway full with cracked ice. Add everything Stir well.

2. Strain into a cocktail glass.

January 16, 2015

What I’m Drinking: Let It Fly

This international (of sorts) country hopper is another that has a bit of a holiday-overload-reviving quality. It even has double bitters, and the slightly bitter vermouth Punt ‘e Mes, making it good anytime you’ve had a filling meal. It’s all underlined by the fine Irish Whiskey, Teeling, which I hope you can find in your neighborhood.

let-it-fly
Let It Fly

Cracked ice
1-1/2 ounces Teeling Irish Whiskey
1 ounce Kronan Swedish Punsch
1/2 ounce Punt ‘e Mes vermouth
2 dashes Scrappy’s orange bitters
1 dash Angostura bitters

1. Fill a cocktail shaker halfway full with cracked ice. Add everything, and stir.

2. Strain the mix into a cocktail glass.

December 12, 2014

What I’m Drinking: The Long and Short

Baby, it’s cold outside. Luckily, this drink makes it warm inside (both inside you, and inside a domicile, if you happened to be drinking it inside. Though, honestly, it would be tasty if had outside as well, and probably be a welcome sight to anyone who had been outside in the cold). It uses SIA, a lovely blended Scotch that’s recently been released, and which boasts a mélange of citrus, spice, vanilla, and smoke and nuttiness. It’s a great Scotch to woo people who don’t like Scotch as well (and yeah, there are those people out there). Mix it up with the swell French aperitif Pineau des Charentes White Pineu – which is a little citrusy, too – and the always-awesome Scrappy’s orange bitters, and you have this wonderful winter warmer.

long-and-short

The Long and Short

1-1/2 ounces SIA blended Scotch
3/4 ounce Pineau des Charentes White Pineu
2 dashes Scrappy’s orange bitters
4 ounces hot water
Lemon twist, for garnish

1. Add the SIA Scotch, Pineau des Charentes, and the Scrappy’s to a mug that’s been warmed slightly with hot water. Stir briefly.

2. Add the hot water and stir again. Garnish with the lemon twist. Indulge yourself with every sip.

September 26, 2014

What I’m Drinking: The Defensive Formation

defensiveIn an earlier post, I talked about football, football season, and having better drinks at your football parties. My suggestion there was that you call an audible over your past party selections and serve an Audible cocktail. It’s a good plan. However, the Audible (drink) is a strong mix, and after a couple, you may need to go on the defensive, so you make it until the end of the fourth quarter, and overtime, perhaps. With that in mind, at some point when the emotion is high, move to The Defensive Formation, which will refresh and perhaps balance things out. It still has a strong kick, but it’s mellowed some — but it could still hit the game-winning field goal from 45 out as time ticks down. Don’t think that it can’t.

The Defensive Formation

Cracked ice
2 ounces Woodinville Whiskey bourbon
1/2 ounce Letterpress limoncello
3/4 ounce orange juice
2 dashes Scrappy’s orange bitters
Ice cubes
3 ounces chilled soda water

1. Fill a cocktail shaker or mixing glass halfway full with cracked ice. Add the bourbon, limoncello, orange juice, and bitters. Stir well.

2. Fill a highball or other comparable glass three-quarters up with ice cubes. Strain the mix from Step 1 through a fine strainer over the ice and into the glass.

3. Fill the glass almost to the top with the club soda. Stir to combine. Drink and cheer, drink and cheer.

September 19, 2014

What I’m Drinking: The Audible

Are you ready for some football? No, really, are you ready? Because we’re now in the thick of it, with passes being passed and blockers blocking, and, most importantly, football parties happening in parking lots and homes alike. Don’t let your party get stuck with the same old plays (and by “plays” here, I mean drinks) being served up to defenses who will then laugh at your tired plays. Instead, call an Audible and serve up the below mix. It’s a strong one – because sometimes we need a strong drink when watching our favorite team. audibleIt’s delicious, too, because sometimes we deserve a reward for our support. Oh, it’s also a tad Italian – just cause I like Italy. And because Italian fans are, outside of you, the most rabid fans in the world, and when drinking this, you will channel all rabid fans and become the most fanatical fan in the world. Promise. I used Woodinville Whiskey bourbon, Letterpress limoncello, and Scrappy’s orange bitters here, because they’re made in Seattle, and I like to support my home teams.

The Audible

Cracked ice
2 ounces Woodinville Whiskey bourbon
1/2 ounce Letterpress limoncello
3/4 ounce orange juice
2 dashes Scrappy’s orange bitters

1. Fill a cocktail shaker or mixing glass halfway full with cracked ice. Add everything Stir well.

2. Strain through a fine strainer into a cocktail glass or smallish football helmet. Drink and cheer, drink and cheer.

July 25, 2014

What I’m Drinking: The McCutcheon Cocktail with G’Vine Floraison Gin

applegreensRecently, I was browsing again through Applegreen’s Bar Book, a book sized to fit in your vest or shirt pocket, by a guy named John Applegreen, printed first in 1899. I’ve gone through it many times before, but like a lot of old bar books, I still love looking it over. And sometimes I find gems I missed or didn’t make before. The McCutcheon Cocktail is one of those very gems.

It’s a gin-based drink, and I decided to go with G’Vine’s Floraison gin, which is a small batch gin made in the Cognac region of France, and crafted from neutral spirits distilled from grapes. The juniper is there, but subtle, and mingling with a strong grape-ness (in a good way) and other floral notes leading into spices (chamomile and ginger and a few more). It’s has enough going on that it can play well with other herbal mixers (though really, try it solo, too), which is why it seemed – and is – an ideal gin for this unburied treasure of a cocktail, a cocktail which also contain both dry and sweet vermouth (I went with Dolin for the dry, and Carpano for the sweet) and a bit of maraschino and orange bitters. I went with Scrappy’s on the bitters, in a local shout out. It’s a beauty of a drink, and here’s a toast for Mr. Applegreen for introducing me to it, at whatever afterlife bar he’s shaking and stirring at.

McCutcheon

The McCutcheon

Cracked ice
1-1/2 ounces G’Vine Floraison gin
3/4 ounce Dolin dry vermouth
3/4 ounce Carpano Antica sweet vermouth
1 dash maraschino liqueur
1 dash Scrappy’s orange bitters

1. Fill a mixing glass or cocktail shaker halfway full with cracked ice. Add everything (be careful on your dash of maraschino, you don’t want to go too heavy). Stir well.

2. Strain into a cocktail glass. Dream of the late 1800s, and France.

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