Hey folks, it’s been a while. It’s been… a month since I’ve updated? I suppose there are a few reasons for that. Primarily, I’ve been trying to focus on one spirit per month, and this month was to be rum. But I can’t say I enjoyed the drinks I was making, and none of them felt worthy enough to share here. Combine that with money becoming very tight, it’s been rougher than I like. Luckily I was able to sneak ingredients like citrus into the grocery budget.
But enjoy about that, let’s get to the drinks that I tried to make.
I tend to name drinks after I make them, and if they don’t measure up, I won’t bother. So here’s Untitled #1:
-1 part light rum
-1 part applejack
-0.5 part allspice dram (homemade)
-0.25 part lemon juice
-Dash Angostura bitters
This drink was all right, but as you can see from my expression below, I wasn’t thrilled with it. It had a good bit of spice, and the balance was there. The applejack paired well with the rum, but the rum seemed to cut through the other flavors, unpleasantly so.
|“How would you describe it?” *stares at camera*|
I also tried a very classic Bumbo recipe (rum, water, sugar, and nutmeg) and a basic daiquiri (rum, lime juice, simple syrup), and neither particularly tickled my fancy. So, my conclusion from these experiments? I haven’t developed my taste for rum yet. This is an aspect of self-improvement that I think I’ll enjoy working on.
In the interim, I’ve been making other things. I made a Lion’s Tail for a Guess that Classic Cocktail segment on Reddit, I modified the Lion’s Tail replacing the bourbon and lime with rye and lemon, and that was a hit at a party I went to. For both of these drinks, I made my own Allspice Dram, which is white rum infused with allspice and cinnamon, and mixed with an equal part brown sugar syrup.
I also started making some shrubs. What’s a shrub? I’ll explain that in a future post. But here’s a teaser picture. Spoiler: they’re tasty and easy to make!
If you follow cocktail stuff on a regular basis, you probably already know about Negroni Week. A Negroni is simply 1 part gin, 1 part sweet vermouth, and 1 part Campari, an Italian amaro (i.e. bitter) liqueur known for its bright red color and bitter citrus and herbal flavor. Negroni Week is a campaign to spread the word about this complex cocktail and raise some money for charity through participating bars. Don’t like one of the ingredients? Swap it out. Possibly the best thing about a Negroni is how flexible it is. The combination of 1 part spirit, 1 part sweet, 1 part herbal can be changed to make all sorts of other drinks. Some of them have their own monikers, like the Boulevardier (replace gin with rye whiskey).
Personally, I prefer my Negronis with aquavit instead of gin. But, inspired by Negroni Week, I decided to mix things up even more for my version, and I used both aquavit and rye whiskey in place of the gin. This created a negroni/boulevardier mashup that worked very well. It’s spicy and bold, and I find it more complex than the standard gin. The citrus in the Gamle Ode Celebration aquavit I used really blends well with the citus-y bitterness in the Campari.
|Mmm, properly stirred.|
One final bit of news: the rum I won arrived! I’ll talk about my tasting notes for it in a future post, but my initial impression is that it’s a very mellow rum with a strong inherent sweetness. Stay tuned for more!
|Mmm, pretty picture.|
For the foreseeable future, I’ll be jotting down drink recipes and other experiments with syrups and mixers, and posting them here. Instead of trying to stick with a pattern like the first two months, this may be a little more organic now. I’ll still try to keep it seasonal with any fruit or other ingredients, and if you have any requests or suggestions, either for a spirit, a flavor, or a specific cocktail, I’d love to try it! And hopefully I’ll be bringing more content to the site, such as how-to articles and whatnot, so stay tuned and thanks for sticking with me.
Thanks again for sticking with me, both through this long post and through my extended absence. As a reward for your patience and resolve, here’s a picture of my wife and our puppy. Cheers!
|Mmm, prettiest picture.|