August 30, 2010

oot-Fray oops-Lay

I picked up some cachaça the other day, although it's not calling itself cachaça. It's calling itself "Rum Toucano," but as it's not a rhum Agricole, and it's made from sugarcane instead of molasses, I'm calling it a cachaça. And so I decided to try it in a rather experimental way.

While perusing the recipes page for Bittermens bitters, after getting their Boston Bittahs and 'Elemakule Tiki bitters, I found a drink made by Ago Perrone, from Montgomery Place, called "Dolce and Cabana" as it was made with Cabana cachaça. Well, I had my Rum Toucano, and I didn't have any Lillet Rouge, but I did have some Dubonnet Rouge, another quinquana. And I had some bitters that Mr Perrone didn't when he invented the drink. So I did a few little swaps, and came up with this one. I call it "The Loopy Toucan," or, assuming I haven't mangled my Portuguese too badly...
O Tucano Louco

1.5 oz Rum Toucano (or other cachaça)
2/3 oz Dubonnet Rouge
2 dashes Bittermens Grapefruit bitters
2 dashes Bittermens Xocolatl Mole bitters
1 dash Bittermens Boston Bittahs
1 dash simple syrup (preferably made with demerara or unbleached sugar)

Stir all with ice and strain into coupe. Garnish with a lemon twist (expressed over the drink first, please) and a cherry or two.
There are a lot of flavors and noses in this cachaça vying for attention, lots of citrus, lots of spice. And by using so many bitters, and by using the sweet but complex notes from the Dubonnet, you really cater to all of them. It's a very complicated drink, with fruit and lemon and black pepper notes. It's almost like a nice añejo tequila with some sips, but quite different with others. I really kind of like this one. Not bad for just futzing around with swapping in what I had on hand. Perhaps on my next go-round, I'll replace the Xocolatl Mole bitters with the 'Elemakule bitters and see what the spices bring to the party...

O Toucano Luoco

August 21, 2010

Mixology Monday August: Brown, Bitter and Stirred

0EE1C1B7-51D9-464A-9FD4-3362608E69F5.jpgSo I've been gone from this blog almost a month, but that's nothing compared to MxMo...they've been in absentia since MAY! Though, in their defense, there was Tales of the Cocktail and the summer heat in there...they probably were busy and/or drunk. But I repeat myself. Anyway, there's a new MxMo challenge out there, hosted by Lindsey Johnson of Lush Life Productions at her blog, Brown, Bitter and Stirred. And thus she has chosen an eponymous challenge. To make a drink that's brown, bitter and (preferably) stirred.

So I've decided to offer up a drink I've been kicking around (appropriately) since May, and decided that it's good enough to share. It's a variant on a drink called "La Mañana Después" that's served at The Gibson in Washington D.C., which is itself a variation on the Savoy's Fernet Cocktail. The Fernet is made with gin, but The Gibson makes it with blanco tequila. I made it with añejo tequila. While "La Mañana Después" is supposed to be a drink for the morning after, suffering from a hangover, I've used añejo tequila, which is aged anywhere from a year and a day to a day short of three years. Since I got it sometime after it stopped aging, instead of "La Mañana Después," "The Day After" I've called it "Tres Años Después" or "Three Years Later."
Tres Años Después

2 oz añejo tequila
1/2 oz Fernet Branca
2/3 oz sweet vermouth
2/3 oz dry vermouth
1 dash Fee Brothers orange bitters
1 dash Bittermens Grapefruit bitters
1 dash Bittermens Boston Bittahs

Stir all well with ice, strain into an Old Fashioned glass containing a single ice cube.
It's smoky, it's citrusy, it's bitter, it's wonderful. The Bittermens Boston Bittahs, which are a new ingredient for this blog, are citrus, more citrus, and a little extra citrus for good measure, with a backbone of chamomile. They're really wonderful, and worth every penny it takes to get them (and it really doesn't take all that many).Tres Años Después