Not much to explain on this one. I started with a Japanese gin and wanted to highlight it with other Japanese ingredients. The yuzu liqueur offers enough acid that no citrus is needed, but more sweetness is necessary. Thus the ginger and lychee came to play. Finally, some yuzu bitters were added for balance. A nice, bright yet subtle drink.
I named this Shiodome as that was my first real introduction to Tokyo, off the plane and train. For a couple of years I went out fairly regularly for a job, around once a quarter, and the Shiodome district was where my clients — and my hotel — were located.
This one started out with me playing with the rhubarb and ginger liqueur. I wanted to pair that with the strawberry, but didn’t want too much additional sweetness so split that gin base with the Elephant London Dry, which I felt offered enough botanical interest to stand up to the other flavors. The Yellow Chartreuse smoothed things out and broadened the herbaceousness even further, but the drink needed some acid so a little lemon was added. The bitters completed the picture.
Yes, the name came directly because of the gin. Change the gin and you have to modify the name. Rules are rules.
I’m not sure what led me down a path of bananas and chilies, but it works. I stuck with tequila to match the chile liqueur, and added lemon for some acid then some bitter amaro and Angostura.
The drink has a nice sweetness and bite. I thought the sign from the Chinese Zodiac was fitting for a name. Too bad it’s not for 2020. But the Water Rat doesn’t sound like a good drink. Though perhaps it is appropriate for the year thus far.
Here’s a rum twist on a Twentieth Century Cocktail, one of my favorite gin drinks. Obviously rum is subbed for the gin, and the ratios were then tweaked to my taste.
Since the original drink’s name comes from the train transport between Chicago and New York City, I thought in this case with the Florida and (originally) Cuban rum it was only appropriate to name the drink after the common transport on that route back during Prohibition, the Ford Trimotor, nicknamed the Tin Goose.
There have been other Tin Goose cocktails, I must admit, but it seemed too perfect for this drink to not use. And the drink will be gone before anyone notices.
Here’s a little hodgepodge of a cocktail that came from me wanting to use up my Mandarine Napoleon which I’ve had on the shelf for years, a Cognac-based orange liqueur. I mixed this with lemon and mint, then some Kina for bitterness and sweetness. The latter needed a little amping up, and so the simple syrup was added.
Wasn’t sure of a name, but working from the Mandarine I went with something Chinese over Mexican or French, but really this was an international endeavor. For me, the prevailing flavor was the mint, so I focused on that with the name. Not sure the pun works, but does that really matter when you enjoy what you’re sipping?
This one started out in a completely different place as sort of a rum Manhattan, and over iterations evolved until I noticed mostly French ingredients. So I decided to swap in rhum agricole from Martinique split with Cognac instead of the original rum, and then added a dash of Benedictine for good measure, and got this complex sipper.
The French angle had me thinking of French corsairs in place of English privateers, and doing a bit of reading found the term “guerre de course,” meaning “commerce raiding” which is such a fancy term for pirating. Fancy name for a fancy drink.
Stir with ice and strain into teacup. Garnish with fresh cinnamon.
The quince gin was a recent tasty acquisition and I wanted to play around with it. Doing a little exploration on flavor pairings I saw that quince and coffee can work together so I grabbed the Leopold Bros. coffee offering and used the apple brandy as a base (the quince gin is fairly sweet). Still needed a little additional bitterness, and that’s where the Cynar came in. The final drink had a nice sweet and bitter balance, and the cinnamon on the nose played wonderfully with the apple and quince.
Second breakfast I guess is a “thing”, though I never heard it until Fellowship of the Ring. But an apple and coffee is a common offering so it seemed perfect for this drink. Not a bad way to start the day. Again.
Shake with ice and strain into coupe. Garnish with three drops of rose water, a strawberry and some basil.
I recently acquired the Puerto De Indias strawberry gin and just fell in love with it. The strawberry on the nose is so pronounced, yet the flavor does not come across as artificial nor cloying, just a bright crisp strawberry essence within the gin.
It seemed only natural to match this with basil, and I had the Square One vodka on hand. Everything else just sort of fell in place. The lemon was on obvious choice for acid, the Lillet adds some sweet and bitter. That sweetness needed a little extra from the simple syrup. With a few drops of rose for the scent I had a drink.
The name recalls sappy lyrics from the Tin Pan Alley era, where “moon,” “June,” and “spoon” were common rhymes in love songs. But as the June moon is known as both the Strawberry Moon and the Rose Moon due to June ripening and blossoming, it seemed a perfect name. Sappy doesn’t necessarily mean insincere, and I sincerely love this drink!
Shake with ice and strain over cracked ice in tiki mug.
Pineapple tiki without pineapple juice, which I often don’t have on hand. Here I combined some Jamaican Funk with the Stiggins’ Fancy from Plantation. For more pineapple kick I added Giffard’s Caribbean Pineapple liqueur. Lemon was my acid tartness, and for more sweetness I reached for the falernum. Finally, my go to for rounding out many a drink, tiki or not, is Benedictine and Angostura. I stand by that.
The name comes from the address of that certain sea dweller who lives in a pineapple under the sea. Are you ready, kids?