This MxMo will celebrate these styles of drink; whether it’s a basic Manhattan with a tinkered touch of Averna, or a revolutionary mixture of tequila, Campari and pure adrenaline, mix up your favorite brown-booze cocktail and put the details on your blog with a photo by the end of Monday August 30.
Brown spirits yay! this means for me – most of the time:
RUM, RUM and MORE RUM!!
Thank you Lindsey for both hosting and giving me the perfect excuse to completely indulge in RUMS! – AND to play with my new Dandelion&Burdock bitters and a dash or two of my favorite – the Creole Bitters!
Brown, bitter and stirred…doesn`t it sound delisicious?
I decided to go wild with the rums because that`s also deliscious and i wanted two bitters to spice up the drink. The rums chosen are all very flavorful and spicy so the result is a spicy boozy drink.
Seems like there`s a steady stream of cocktail bitters coming these days..well, i don´t complain..i think its pretty much fun with bitters. If you need them all? well that`s another topic of discussion.. But bitters are FUN and in my opinion – yes they are useful in all their variations because we find new ways to use them because cocktails also develop..
What is interesting too with bitters i think, is that it takes some playing around with them before you get to know them and what they go best in so there´s much time and space for experimenting.
Here´s a new bitters from Adam Elmegirab who since the release of Adam Elmegirab’s Boker’s reformulation in July 2009, has been researching the work of our cocktail forefathers for ideas and inspiration to follow up with a unique product of his own.
The Dandelion & Burdock bitters are based on a drink he used to love in his childhood, namely the traditional British beverage called Dandelion & Burdock and which is believed to have been invented sometimes in the 1300th by by the Italian priest Saint Thomas Aquinas. As with many bitters, the original purpose was medical.
Layers of complex flavours including ginger, anise, lemon, orange, liquorice, clove, honey, muscavado and malt; which combines to give an earthy, bittersweet product backed up by natural sweetness.
Like the Boker´s bitters the bottle is hand-labeled and pretty cute if you ask me;-)
Dandelion & Burdock Bitters adds depth to a number of cocktails such as Gin & Tonic or in classics such as the Martini, Martinez or Tequila Old Fashioned.
Here´s a great cocktail to use these bitters in, the Chiapas Old Fashioned, created by Adam for Yatai in 2009.
CHIAPAS OLD FASHIONED
50ml reposado Tequila
12.5ml green tea infused sugar syrup
2 dashes Dandelion & Burdock Bitters
Strip white grapefruit zest
Stir until ice cold and strain over ice into a chilled rocks glass
My batteries died so i don`t have any pic of this drink. Its a very refreshing drink and i think these bitters goes very well with tequila. Of course i had to mix something up with rum as well..
SAINTS & SINNERS
2 oz Smith&Cross Jamaican Rum
.75 oz fresh lime
0.5 oz sugar cane syrup
1 oz pineapple juice
3 dashes Dandelion & Burdock Bitters
Shake and strain into a glass with crushed ice and garnish with a pineapple leaf , lime wedge and a 2 more dashes of the bitters on the ice.
Since the Smith&Cross is 114 proof this is a strong drink. I find it quite refreshing.
I like these bitters, i like them a lot – they have a very nice and complex flavor. i need to play more with them and cannot wait to use them more with tequila and also mezcal..
I was curious how the bitters would go with rum too and they go quite well i think. Now i used a dark rum – but i believe a good white would go even better due to the herbal flavors in the bitters.
Its strong, flavorful and even a bit bitter..and it got ATTITUDE – this is Smith & Cross rum from Jamaica.
Oops..i`m a bit late to post after the Tales..but real life has hit me with something called work…yes i do have a real job;-) – i`m not sitting here experimenting with rare demeraras all days…but now its RUM TIME!
And better late than never..
I managed to bring back a few rum treasures like the Lemon Hart 151 and the since a long time wanted Jamaican pot still rum Smith&Cross. Now i also know what the fuss was all about – and yes they are so right to rave over this one.
I can`t really figure out how it happened but last year on Tales in New Orleans this rum was out for tasting and somehow i managed to miss it..can you believe that? i really wonder what i was doing..apparently i was doing something!
Anyway, so it took a year for me to get to try it out and get me a bottle…because as far as i know you need to go to the states to get hold of this rum as its not sold in Europe (yet) i really hope to see it sold in the UK..will it be? and if so…when? and why is not already?
The Smith & Cross brand goes back all the way to the 1788s when underground cellars near the river Thames in London stored Jamaican rum which was famous in the 19th and 20th century.
Smith & Cross contains only pot still distillates by Wedderbaum and Plummer – and its unfiltered so here`s flavor….of exotic fruits and island spice – its very deep, raw, flavorful and it kicks ass! – its what rum used to be..Its a bit too strong for sipping though ( 57% ABV – navy strength ) and more suitable for mixing and as a mixing rum its excellent.
Perfect for Tiki drinks as well! and it blends well with other rums. I haven´t had the time yet to play that much with it yet, But Jay over at Oh Gosh! made an excellent review of it last year.
So for now i have mostly had it by itself mixed with fresh fruit juices or with Batavia arrak to make a witchdoctor.. Here`s a few other ways to use it:
MIXOHAUS CHARTREUSE SWIZZLE
Can`t have enough of this iconic drink..its both strong and extremely refreshing at the same time. I miss all the evenings in the mixohouse with this grand drink passed around in flower vases..where additions of various rums were added. One of those that i like the most is the one with Smith&Cross.
1 1/2 oz Pineapple Juice
1 oz Lime Juice
1/4 oz Falernum
1 oz Smith&Cross
1 oz Green Chartreuse
2 dash Angostura Bitters
Fresh mint for garnish
Add ingredients to a glass full of crushed ice. Swizzle until the glass frost on the outside, lavishly garnish with mint, and add straw.
ELYSIAN TIKI PUNCH – A tiki drink in rememberance of the 2010 Mixohouse and those warm humid nights on the porch listening to the whole orchestra of cikadas sipping great cocktails and ice cold beers. The name comes from the street Elysian ave – a version with Zaya instead of ONO Cajun was made for the Zaya TDN last thursday.
This is a drink to sip and remember the summer, the syrup has a subtle touch of pecan nuts.
Mix in blender with crushed ice for 10 sek or shake vigoriously with ice, strain and serve in a glass filled with fresh crushed ice, add some extra ice to build it up over the glass a bit and add a few dashes of the Creole bitters on top. Garnish with fresh mint. Add straws.
PECAN BUTTER SYRUP
Lightly crush and toast a handful of pecan nuts in a dry iron pan until fragrant. make a simple syrup with 2:1 muscovado sugar and water, add the pecan nuts and slightly boil, set aside to cool. Strain into a clean bottle. Before using it warm up the amount you gonna use and add little bit of unsalted butter to it. When the butter is melted, stir it in and use for the drink.
Smith & Cross is imported to the US by Haus Alpenz LLC, Edina MN, www.alpenz.com
This is what i call a RUM! Can also be found online at DrinkUpNy
This really went away waaaay to fast! – already over?? but we just started didn`t we? Well that`s what happens when you have a good time! and in Nola its easy to let the good times roll..or laissez le bon temps rouler!
Tales of the Cocktail is over for now…I dunno how but it seems like this years Tales went faster than last year…
After missing Nola for too long – i could have kissed the ground when i landed..I have met both old and new friends, both from the city and from the whole world, had many nice long walks, seen the oh so beautiful roseate spoonbill – aka “Evangeline Rose” and gators, (eaten them too – well not the spoonbill…) Been to the Museum of the American cocktail and the Southern Food and Beverage Museum.
Had freshly made juice from Louisiana watermelons fresh from the wayside stand, been to interesting seminars and many tastings, eaten the most fantastic food in the world (the charbroiled oysters are to die for and Jacque-Imos food too) seen breathtaking architecture and gardens, danced to great music and more.
Seen the most fantastic cypresses covered with spanish moss, had many good laughs, made new friends, eaten freshly boiled shrimps, and spicy crawfish..
Had many fantastic cocktails, been almost lost in Monteleones corridors which – really – is a part of Tales, investigated the 2nd floor of Muriel`s, tasted vintage rums, had muffaletta and gator on a stick, had 400 year glacier ice balls in my glass, waved my napkin in a second line, walked on the levee watching the river roll by, had fun in the mixohouse and no less – eaten Rick`s saschimi! had Trader Tiki`s tiki cocktails! Rumdoods Ti-Punch! Darcy`s phosphate cocktails! Cocktailnerd`s chartreuse swizzle! Jeffrey`s mesmerizing witchdoctor! and Meade`s awesome Mai Tai and Zaserac!
Been to Lauren Fleurtygirl`s new shop on opening day, eaten snoballs and onion rings, imbibed many many abitas..and much much more and i just LOVED that warm humid air…which tells you that you are in Louisiana..
And i know that everyone who were there have had as wonderful time as i did! Combine a place like Nola with an event like the Tales..= WIN
There you see! Nola is the most wonderful city in the world and Tales of the Cocktail the perfect event, i really recommend a trip down there..Its a place with its own culture, its own music, its own food, its own architecture – its a place like no other – believe me.
And the people in this city get out of their way to make you feel welcome! But Nola isn`t for everyone, its not a city for lukewarm people, you either love it or you just don´t get it.
One of the blogosphere`s awesome bloggers – Jesse Card over at St Croix Libation Society couldn`t have described the people of Nola better than this:
“As New Orleans tries to lick those wounds still evident from Katrina, there is an overwhelming sense of being among the people of the city. Sure, they’ve been beaten down and forgotten by the rest of the country, but there is no crisis of identity.
These people know who they are and are damn sure proud of it.”
The time at Tales and in Nola has all been AWESOME and i thank Nola and her wonderful people and all the good cocktail folks for that. Leaving Nola is always a terrible thing..and i even miss those cracked streets.
Nice in the heat…right outside our house in the corner Elysian/Burgundy or in front of Maple Leaf.
For next years new Tales-to-be attendants and bloggers here`s some of the things that blogging the Tales of the Cocktail has taught me:
You can plan your sessions and need to do it! But be prepared for spontaneous changes and other unplanned happenings so leave room for that. (like getting drunk at bar Tonique)
Make sure to eat and drink ( which ain´t any problem in Nola..), always carry a bottle of water or two with you.
Take notes during the sessions, lots of them and lots of pictures.
Don`t stay in the French quarter – make sure you see more of the city.
Don´t drink everything that is handed to you just because its free, and always pace.
If you see a row of bloggers in the front row of a session passing bottles between them – pay no attention.
Find out early which one of the elevators on Monteleone that takes you to the top.
Don`t miss the tasting rooms.
If you`re a woman, bring a fan in your purse. If you`re a man, dunno…bring a fan?
Sleep is overrated during Tales, take a few days extra off instead when you come back home – you sure gonna need it.
If you see something and feel that you should buy it – buy it – but please – buy local.
Do not miss the music venues.
Bring enough business cards, you`ll meet a lot of interesting people.
If you happen to buy any beautiful Nola Fleur de Lis sculptures to take home, do not EVER place them in your hand luggage – especially not if you`re gonna go through Amsterdam security…i almost lost my connecetion because they thought the sculptures had “a weird shape” (!) and they did X-ray my entire content 4 times..i was the last person to board my flight..jeez..
That`s all folks!
Hopefully see yall again next year! until then i`m gonna add a new habit to my life – green magic chartreuse swizzles…spiked with strong rum.
See the musical shape of the shutter dogs? check out a violin for example and you`ll see the same shape. In the city of jazz even the shutter dogs are musical..
One of the things i loved the most – sitting on our porch with cocktail in hand in the sunset in the warm humid air listening to the orchestra of cikadas.
What happens when a 400 year old block of Alaskan glacier ice is shipped down to New Orleans and ends up in the Mixohouse?
Last year in the old Mixohouse on Rampart st one night someone drove a large cart containing a huge block of ice into our living room where the bar was. I looked at it pretty wide-eyed i believe and asked what is this??? and was told it was Alaskan glacier ice to go in our cocktails….Wait…old glacier ice shipped from Alaska all the way to Nola?? who on earth would come up with such an idea??
It turns out that Nathan has acces to a 400 year old glacier…and so also this year a block of that ice was brought to the Mixohouse in Nola..this time to be carved to ice balls by bartenders to go in our cocktails..pretty cool i think.
Sounds crazy? – it is…geeky? definetily – and awesome.
Most everybody is fascinated by the ice balls and how they are made and this event was no exception.
The room was packed when the carving begun and as the carving went on and new ice balls were formed i saw a couple of interviews being done and much people were around so you`ll most likely find articles about this event or the other house parties in various places. Ice balls were made until the blocks of ice were finished and the round glistening balls went into our glasses..magic.
One thing for sure, if you get such an ice ball in your glass – when the drink is done you refill and after the second drink is done – you eat it.
The taste? well…ice. Clean ice.
This was fun and quite exceptional – hope its repeated next year..
Living in a house full of bloggers assures many different things to happen, one was to drink chartreuse swizzles every night served in flower vases. The swizzles were made communal style, the vase was fit for 5-6 people and was passed around. One night when i was on my computer for a while it knocked on my door and in came a hand with a vase containing the famous swizzle – wanna swizzle? YES!!!
The contents also varied – depending on our mood and the contents in our bottles – sometimes JWray was added – guess who was responsable for that? and i ain`t gonna fight the additon of JWray in this drink. Othertimes various rums. So really how many variations of this swizzle i´ve had i have no idea but the original recipe is here. Another variation here. Please try it – its deliscious. I really like the idea of adding rum to it though.
The Mixohouse this year was much bigger than last year and nicely located near Frenchmen st with all the music venues like The spotted Cat, Blue Nile, Snug Harbour,The Apple Barrel, Cafe Negril and my favorite d.b.a. – where i almost lived.
Another thing i like about living in the Mixohouse is the idea itself – to live with friends in a house. You get that home feel and its really fun.