ORIGINAL NEW ORLEANS COCKTAILS pt2 – The Hurricane Cocktail

hurricane

Famous like few others – the Hurricane cocktail is said to have been invented in the 1940`s at Pat O`Brien`s bar who simply needed a new cocktail to get rid of surplus rums when whiskey was scarce during and after World War II, but was originally very different from what they serve now — it was rum (half light, half dark), passion fruit juice and lime (2:1:1) They served it in a glass that was shaped like a hurricane lamp and so the drink got its name.

During the prohibition of the 1930s the bar was known as “Mr. O’Brien’s Club Tipperary” and a password was required to get inside of the establishment. Its since then one of the most popular drinks in the french quarter, especially among the tourists.

The extremely sweet and red Hurricane you get at Pat O`Brien`s today is not what once was served and what you get when mixing it up with all natural ingredients and it uses the powder-mix containing chemicals and artificial color.

Still i think its something you should try when in New Orleans – it´s one of those things you just have to do bec if you don`t you simply have n´t been to New Orleans….and it actually does have a charm of it´s own.

Also Pat `O Briens is a fun place to go to with it`s beautiful fire fountain in the courtyard – and don`t forget the piano bar with their legendary copper pianos and lively dueling piano players singing with the people through the night with that joyous New Orleans spirit floating through the air – it´s great fun!

That Hurricane you get at Pat O`Brien`s will also creep up on you and get you pretty drunk if you drink too many too fast as it contains plenty of rum so be careful.

As for the Hurricane-mix…the Hurricanes made with it is one kind but it´s not the original kind and many are they who believe this powder-mixed drink ís what makes a real Hurricane. Chuck over at Gumbopages also wrote about this in an excellent post.

hurricane-mix

Made with natural ingredients and homemade grenadine you get a very different and much nicer cocktail and if you play with the rums you can have some fun. I use a passionfruit juice and some passionfruit syrup as well. This drink with rum, lime, sugar, passionfruit juice and grenadine is actually close to the Daiquiri.

To this nothing but homemade grenadine will do for me – and as its so easy to make that i always have it. I often add a handful of dried hibiscus flowers to it as well – it gives a very tasty and fresh tropical tang. So equal parts water and sugar plus the seeds of two pomegranates (or have èm juiced) and if you will – a handful of hibiscus – bring to a boil and then take off the heat – add the fresh seeds of one half of the two pomegranates, mash it up a bit and leave to cool. But if you want to be really authentic – leave out the hibiscus flowers;-)

I made a batch today as i was out of grenadine and the pomegranates are in season now so there`s plenty of large ripe red pomegranates from Morocco out there and they taste so fresh! I need to buy 3 when i`m gonna use 2 because i eat up too many of those ruby-red sparkling seeds that not much would be left for my grenadine.

Let stand for a few hours so the flavor settles, then strain and bottle. Keep in the fridge, it lasts about a month or more. There`s no reason to buy commercial grenadine unless you can`t find fresh pomegranates. But as a basic rule with both drink-mixing and cooking, always use the best and freshest ingredients possible.

hurricanes

Here´s two recipes of the Hurricane, one is the basic one and the other the common recipe today.The Hurricane on the pictures is made with the common recipe.

Basic recipe:

1.5 oz light rum
1.5 oz dark rum
1 oz passionfruit juice or syrup
¾ oz lime juice

Shake with ice and strain into a Hurricane glass filled with ice.

Common recipe:

1.5 oz light rum
1.5 oz dark rum
1 oz orange juice
1 oz fresh lime juice
1/4 cup passion fruit juice, or 1 tablespoon passion fruit syrup
1 oz simple syrup
1 teaspoon grenadine
Stemmed cherries, and orange slice to garnish
Ice cubes – i prefer cracked or crushed ice here.

Half fill a Hurricane glass with crushed or cracked ice (or ice cubes) Shake all ingredients and strain into the glass. Fill up with more ice if needed and garnish with an orange slice and stemmed cherry.

Now i didn`t have any cherry today or an orange slice  so i used what was left of the pressed orange and a lime wedge instead.

On the famous pics of the cocktail blogging crew (well part of it) below from Tales -08 and-09 (sorry guys but these pics are awesome…) you can see the Hurricane cocktail as being served at Pat O`Briens and how deeply red the color is.

the-hurricane-gang

 

The fountain at Pat O`Brien`s.

ORIGINAL NEW ORLEANS COCKTAILS pt1 – Vieux Carré & Ramos Gin Fizz

vieux-carre-cocktail

Vieux Carrè cocktail

Tales of the Cocktail may still seem far away but time flies and what is more fitting prior to the Tales than mixing up some genuine cocktails from the city where the cocktail was born and where the Tales of the Cocktail is celebrated each year since eight years back now.

There´s no city in the world that knows how to throw a party like they do in New Orleans and with party usually comes also cocktails. I think there are “cocktails” and there are “drinks” –  like those popular go-cups you see on Bourbon st and they may have their own charm but here i`m gonna talk about genuinely hand crafted and wonderful cocktails, some of the best that have ever been made.

I`ll have to break down my posting about these awesome concoctions  into a few posts. If you`re interested in the history of the cocktails of New Orleans and have a chance you should visit the Museum of the American Cocktail now on april 5th when Darcy from Art of Drink will make a presentation on the influence of soda in cocktails, specifically those of New Orleans. You can read more about this here.

VIEUX CARRÉ COCKTAIL

This is the signature cocktail of the famous Carousel bar in the hotel Monteleone.This particular bar is especially interesting since its made from parts of an actual old carousel that revolves around the bar which is circular. Luckily is not moving fast…but its moving…and it’s a funny experience – and of course you get well crafted cocktails there – its a must try if you are going to New Orleans and the Tales.

You`ll sooner or later most likely find yourself in one of those marvellous barstools and when you do – take your chance and try the signature cocktail the Vieux Carrè – The old square – as its called – after the French quarter which is built like a square and where Monteleone also is. It was first mixed by Walter Bergeron in the 1930s.

the-famous-carousel-bar

3/4 oz. rye whiskey
3/4 oz. brandy
3/4 oz. sweet vermouth
1/8 oz. Benedictine
1 dash Peychaud’s bitters
1 dash Angostura bitters

Build over ice, in an Old Fashioned glass

Aromatic with the vermouth and nicely boozy but not too much, this cocktail is  actually easy to drink. If you like rye then this is for you.

The next one needs no presentation, really – but for those who doesn`t know – this is one of the most famous cocktails of New Orleans – The Ramos Gin Fizz – and its a great cocktail with a history dating back to 1888. A smooth awesomeness just like the Absinthe or Herbsaint Suissesse – a dream of fluffy clouds…and if i say “easy to drink” well this one defies the word “easy”. Its maybe a good thing its a bit laboursome to mix – it may become a natural precaution of making yourself  too many…unless you cheat with the handmixer;-)

What you do then is starting it up with a handmixer in the glass incorporating air into it, mix for 20 seconds, then add ice and shake as usual for another 30 seconds. Now you`ve gained a lot of time and pain. This is also traditionally a morning cocktail – a day after refreshener. Usually i don`t start my mornings with a cocktail, i more likely have a coffee…but during Tales its more of a chance i would do that. In the right environment its a very nice thing.

The Ramos gin fizz  was invented by Henry C Ramos in his bar Meyer`s Restaurant. It was orignally called the “New Orleans Fizz”  and an armada of “shaker boys” used to take turns to shake it to the right consistency. This was before the prohibition. The poularity of this drink faded away with new times and new speeds but today when old cocktails are ressurrected again its more served also outside of New Orleans.

The fluffy dreamy texture comes from the egg whites and using raw eggs in cocktails  is nothing to fear – but if raw eggs is an issue there´s also powdered egg whites and they are simply egg whites where water has been removed. I have never tried it though. The secret in this cocktail is the combination of egg white and a touch of orange flower water.

ramos-gin-fizz

RAMOS GIN FIZZ

1 1/2 oz gin
1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice
1/2 oz. fresh lime juice
1/2 oz. simple syrup
2 oz. milk (half & half or cream if preferred)
1 small egg white
2-3 drops of orange flower water (careful here! you don´t want this drink to taste and smell like a bottle of perfume)
Soda

Shake all ingredients except the soda and shake very well, when you think you`re done, shake some more –  the more the better – and shake first without ice and then with ice – so that the egg white emulsifies and the drink becomes very cold and frothy. (Or use the handmixer way to do it – but really if you want to follow tradition…shake, shake, shake..)Then strain into a chilled highball glass without ice. Top with a little club soda to get some fizz. No garnish – usually, but if you like to – a thin strip of orange, lemon or lime peel/slice is nice i think.

Now that`s a nice cocktail!