MIXING THROUGH GROG LOG 4 – Beachcombers Gold

This tiki cocktail was served in a ice mold. In the old days when they didn`t have any ice machines they carved in large ice blocks and some tikidrinks were stylishly served in various ice molds and no wonder it was appreciated by the customers. Imagine sitting in a dark tikibar..and being served an exotic drink in a ice mold!  Some tiki cocktails was served in a glass placed inside an ice vessel like Dr Funk`s Son.

The most important thing in making a successful ice mold is to use shaved ice which is easier to mold and shape. Another important factor is the temperature. You don`t want the ice to start melting but you don´t want it to be too hard either. Leave it out for a  while until it becomes  a little bit more soft, then it molds easier and then you have to work pretty quick. Then we can discuss water quality for ice but i won`t do that now because it would make the post way too long and besides there are other good resources if you wanna read how to get clear ice.

Without shaved ice its much harder to do this. I made my first attemps using a handmixer after I used my ice crusher. Last time I wasn´t totally satisfied with the molds, especially not the ice shell called “Spanish comb” and that`s the one this drink recipe calls for. As I said, shaved ice is the key. A handcranked ice crusher and a handmixer is not for the lazy person and basically i`m lazy so I haven`t re-attempted to make this type of ice molds and especailly now since my handmixer is broke. Of course you can use a big mortar and beat the hell outta it but i think i`ll go for lots of crushed ice instead.

When you shape the spanish comb ice mold you place the crushed or shaved ice (try to get it like snow) in the glass, a whole heap of it and then gently press the ice towards the sides of the glass with your hands and form an ice shell or hood on one side. Make sure to give enough room in the glass for the liquids. Then to keep it in balance I placed the glass beside the wall in my freezer leaving it there overnight.

This cocktail  which is the 4th in Grog Log was made by Don the Beachcomber.

Here`s the recipe for the drink:

BEACHCOMBER`S GOLD

beachcombers-gold

0.5 oz french vermouth

0.5 oz italian vermouth

Dash Angostura bitters

1/8 tsp pernod

1.5 oz light Puerto Rican rum

Blend for 5 seconds with 2 ounces crushed ice. Strain into cocktail glass or saucer champagne glass with ice shell forming hood over glass.

Well, i was a bit disappoined with this drink, i found it too tart. But that`s so easy to fix, i added 0.5 oz raw sugar syrup and then the drink tasted better. But this one isn`t my favorite of tiki drinks though. Its very important here to choose a rum with a great taste and to not overdose the pernod. Even though i like some anis flavor i think even a bit less than 1/8 tsp is better here, like a drop or two.

As i wasn`t that overmuch happy with this drinks flavor i decided to try to make a twist of some sort and in my mind came of course Campari and then instead of Pernod – Peychauds. I had never yet tried Campari and Peychauds in the same drink and so that could be an interesting little experiment. Something told me to change the rum as well, so i changed it from white to dark. I used Havana Club 7, but that may be subbed with some other dark rum that is flavourful but not too “heavy”.

The recipe looks like this:

GOLDEN BROWN TIKI

golden-brown-tiki

0.5 oz french vermouth

0.5 oz italian vermouth

1 dash Peychauds bitters

o,5 os raw sugar syrup

0.5 oz Campari

2 oz dark rum

Tempting here to switch for gin but then it would be too negroni-like and its supposed to be a tiki drink. For the syrup i use oxfam raw sugar which isn´t a brown sugar but not white either, its fine textured and very flavorful.

This drink was somewhat better but not a drink to die for, but it had a pronounced bitterness that i liked but surely one could play around with the ingredients some more and maybe come up with something better but i think i`m done for today. After all one needs to sleep sometimes as well and it haven´t been much of that since last sunday. Not sure how i feel about campari and pernod in the same drink, its not exactly bad..its a bit weird – like somehow the flavors cannot really agree to share the space..

Next drink up from Grog Log will be another Beachcomber concoction that to me looks much tastier and contains my favorite rum – demerara. Soon to come.

MIXING THROUGH GROG LOG – 3 Aurora Bora Borealis and a Tiki drink in honor of the preservation of the sea turtle.

We all know that Tikidrinks has exotic and/or weird names and the third drink in Grog Log certainly has exactly that: Aurora Bora Borealis…what does that mean? it sounds like the name of some sort of exotic sea creature…or the scientific name of some parasitic plant species living in the cloud forest or maybe some sort of sea star?

Seeing that name on a drink menu in a tiki bar wouldn’t give any hint of what this exotic drink may contain but to tell you the truth, I could order it for the name alone.. The “Bora” in it reminded me of the beautiful  island Bora Bora.

I had to find out the meaning of this name and the only way to do it was to turn to the author of Grog Log himself, namely our own Jeff Beachbum Berry who says the name is a combination of space-age and Tiki references — the Aurora Borealis and the island of Bora Bora. Well, i accept that – Bora Bora is like i said, my dream destination after Moorea..

In my opinion a  good cocktail starts with fresh ingredients and there´s good fresh juices in this one.

AURORA BORA BOREALIS

aurora-bora-borealis1

0.5 oz Coco Lopez coconut cream
0.5 oz fresh lime juice
¼ oz orange juice
tsp orgeat syrup
1 oz dark Jamaican Rum
1 oz light Puerto Rican Rum

Blend with ½ cup crushed ice on low speed for 15 sec. Pour into large cocktail glass.

I find this cocktail very tropical indeed and also quite refreshing. If you don`t like coconut then this isn`t for you but if you like me just love it, well – then give it a try! Its a bit on the sweet side.

The next, which is made in honor of the preservation of the sea turtle is a twist on this one using blood orange juice, fresh lime, vanilla syrup and honey. To this goes El Dorado 3 year old cask aged white rum and Old New Orleans Cajun Spiced rum, two of my favorite rums. Its also a little bit sweet and tropical drink – as it should be in this case. But the Angostura bitters and spice from the ONO rum saves it from going too girlie i think.

The name Honu iti means little or small turtle. On Bora Bora there´s a sea turtle sactuary at Le Méridien which may be the only resort in the world with its own colony of this endangered specie. It may sound like a tourst trap but its about much more than entertaining tourists. They have returned some 500 turtles to the wild  – which in reality is only one teardrop in the ocean but none of those 500 turtles would be alive today had they not been rescued by the resort.

The green sea turtle is green because thier body fat is green – because they turns vegetarian as they mature. They can become 80-90 years old in comparaision to the tortoise which can reach an age of 250. Only one out of  1000  baby sea turtles will reach adult size, so they are very vulnerable. The turtle or Honu is my lucky animal and no matter what how good people say turtle soup is, i could never eat my lucky animal..

Here you can read more about the sea turtles on Bora Bora.

HONU ITI

honu-iti

0.5 oz Coco Lopez coconut cream
0.5 oz fresh lime juice
¼ oz fresh blood orange juice
0.5 oz tahitian vanilla syrup
1 tsp liquid honey
dash Angostura
1 oz El Dorado 3 year old white cask aged rum
1 oz ONO Cajun Spiced rum

Blend with ½ cup crushed ice on high speed for 15 sec. Pour into large cocktail glass. Garnish with a vanilla bean and if you have it – a lovely orchid.

MIXING THROUGH GROG LOG 2 – Astro Aku Aku

astro-aku-page

This time A Mountain of Crushed Ice is on a space trip with the second tiki cocktail from the Grog Log and its dark twist.

Here´s one yummy species of a tiki cocktail, its called Astro Aku Aku and is preferably served in a Moai Mug. (Easter Island Mug) unfortunately i don´t have any..so i`ll serve it in a snifter instead. On the other hand i really like when i can see the color of the drink but a stately tiki mug also gives a very special feeling because of its appearance, its like it demands more respect especially if the mug is tall or have a fierce expression.

The moai mug uses the power of silence and has an air of mystic – the expression of the face of the moai makes you wonder what thoughts and powers are inside. OK, its just a mug but still…at least the drink served has the power of making you drunk.

So therefore, enjoy all booze in moderation, especially certain strong tikidrinks – because tikidrinks are seductive…if you think you can just gulp them down like milk your`e wrong.

So where does this drink`s name come from? according to the book its the space age. More on that in the Grog Log. Astro Aku Aku is based on the restaurant Hawaii Kai`s version of the well known “Suffering Bastard” which was invented in Shepheard`s Hotel in Cairo, Egypt cirka 1950.

ASTRO AKU AKU

astro-aku-aku

1.5 oz fresh lime juice
1 oz papaya nectar
0.5 oz apricot nectar
0.75 oz sugar syrup
0.5 oz falernum
dash Angostura bitters
1 oz 151 demerara rum
1.5 oz gold Puerto Rican rum

Blend everything with ½ cup crushed ice. Pour into 16 oz easter Island mug filled with ice cubes or large snifter with ice cubes.

Nothing is said about garnish but there´s a drawing in the book showing a snifter and a mint sprig. As i was out of mint i used a lime peel instead.

There`s much  fruitness in this drink but it`s balanced by the spiciness of the Angostura bitters and the depth of the demerara rum. Its a lot of lime here but the demerara backs it up, oh demerara rum… – always a good strong backbone…if the demerara wasn`t here i would say this drink is a tad girly. But with some other brand of nectars it would most likely taste different, but as always – if possible get fresh. Its tasty though.

So now i`m supposed to make a twist of this? i like the idea of using papaya nectar and i really don`t fully understand why i haven`t used it in my drinks much more as papaya is my favorite fruit together with lime. What i can get here is either fresh papaya or nectar in a small glass bottle. But this time of the year the fresh papaya is really expensive and the stuff in the tiny little bottle is good so i went for that. The apricot nectar i changed for apricot brandy instead and then i switched the rums.

Angostura bitters is as we know good for everything – but having many bitters its always fun to experiment and to go with papaya and lime and the rest of ingredients i finally found the spicy flavour i was after in Bitter Truths own decanter bitters.

As for switching the rums i felt like doing something different but i wanted definetily to keep the 151 demerara. Whosoever has the wonderful but so sadly dissappearing Lemon Hart 151 its the obvious choice here. I have a bottle of it but its on the other side of the Atlantic and thus out of reach for my shaker…so i used another overproof demerara instead (Outvlugt 1990 full proof old demerara rum) and to pair with it i decided to try St James 12 year old, it can be subbed with St James hors`age. I had no clue how this twist of this drink would end up tasting and that`s the fun!

So let the mixing begin:

POWERS OF THE DARK MATTER

dark-matter

1.5 oz fresh lime juice
1 oz papaya nectar
¼  oz apricot brandy
0.5  oz raw sugar syrup
1-2t  molasses
0.5 oz falernum
dash Bitter Truth`s Own Decanter Bitters
1.5 oz 151 demerara rum
1.5 oz St James 12 year old rhum agricole or hors d`age

Blend everything with ½ cup crushed ice. Pour into a fancy glass filled with crushed ice. Garnish with a lime wedge and a few lime leaves if you can find.

At first sip it was way too tart so i upgraded from 1/4 oz sugar syrup to 1/2 and a little bit more molasses too and then the drink was fine. This one is much more boozy in taste, its definetily a drink for rum lovers.

The name – as its a space age theme – is referring to one of the biggest conundrums in modern astronomy which is the fact that over 90% of the Universe is invisible. This mysterious missing stuff is known as ‘dark matter’. At the same time the name also refers to the dark matters in this drink, the dark molasses and rums.

This was only the second drink..i have a feeling that when i`m done mixing the Grog Log i will be well educated in the realm of tiki drinks. Making twists of drinks is not only fun its also very good practise in balancing flavours.

MIXING THROUGH GROG LOG – 1 The Ancient Mariner

I`ve been thinking about it for a very long time now – to mix every single drink in the Grog Log and blog about them.

This is going to be similar to what my fellow blogger Erik Ellestad over at Underhill Lounge is doing with his enourmous “Stomping through the Savoy project” which means he is mixing every drink from the book from A – Z, take pictures of them and write about them on his blog. I don`t think i would have the patience to go through such a book as the Savoy, the much thinner Grog Log is more suiting my pace i think.

I`m doing this for 5 reasons, one is that it will ensure i never run out of topics for my blog, (not that it has been happening to me yet and probably never will but still) Second – i`haven`t made all the drinks from the Grog Log, now i`ll make sure i do. And third, i have for a long time felt inspired to go through all the drinks in the Grog Log and blog about them. Then fourth – i`ll learn a lot during the process and will be able to share the knowledge i find. Finally and last but not the least – i really like like Tiki drinks!

I`m going to make this a little bit different though from how Erik is doing his project. I`m going to make 2 versions of many of the drinks, first the original version and then a little twist of it, just for the fun of it. I`m intending to try to make the drinks with the ingredients called for to the best of my ability and when i can`t find an ingredient, or make it – which will happen, then I´ll sub it with what i can find here that is the closest.

So let the fun begin with the first drink in Grog Log which is “The Ancient Mariner” which is an original creation by Jeff Berry. Its made with 6 ingredients – 2 rums, lime, grapefruit, sugar and pimento liqueur. As the recipe calls for Pimento liqueur which i don`t have, i`m gonna sub it with homemade pimento dram.

ANCIENT MARINER

ancient-mariner

¾ oz fresh lime juice
0.5 oz grapefruit juice
0.5 oz sugar syrup
¼ pimento liqueur – i used a little bit less of my pimento dram
1 oz demerara rum (i used El Dorado 12)
1 oz Dark Jamaican rum (i used Appleton Extra)

Shake and serve in old-fashioned glass with crushed ice and garnish with lime wedge and mint sprig.

This drink surprised me a little, i find it reminding me of a lighter and fruitier version of a demerara Mai Tai. And when you check the ingredients many are the same, its just the grapefruit juice and pimento liqueur or dram instead of orgeat and orange curacao. Different – yes but the flavour still has that familiar Mai Tai note to it. I find this drink very tasty indeed.

As my homemade pimento dram is quite strong i took down the measurement a bit.

Now its time for a twist of this drink – i call it Polynesian Triangle. The idea of making a twist of the drinks is not so bad – when have you ever heard of someone having just one tiki drink?

POLYNESIAN TRIANGLE

polynesian-triangle1

¾ oz fresh lime juice
0.5 oz grapefruit juice
0.5 oz tahitian vanilla syrup
dash barrel aged bitters
1 oz demerara rum (i used OVD  (Old Vatted Demerara) which has a woody flavour)
1 oz aged rhum agricole ( Clemènt VSOP)
0.5 oz Old New Orleans Cajun Spiced Rum

Shake, strain and serve in a glass filled with crushed ice. Garnish with a fresh Gardenia.

Tahitian Vanilla Syrup: The recipe is in the left sidebar of this blog.

Okole Maluna!

Sugarcane bar

 

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