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Guilty Pleasures

    I am so ashamed. I know its sickly sweet. I know, I know, I'm 52 years old. What the hell am I doing drinking something that is normally drank by 20 something Neanderthals?  As a bona fide card carrying Cocktail snob I know it's supposed to be about the journey, not the destination. But Dam It , every once in a while I get together with an old friend who does not give a darn about well crafted cocktails. It is all about going to a neighborhood bar , getting hammered , playing pool and making ourselves laugh the night away. The majorty of the time it's a beer and Yukon Jack night. Yes you read that right.   100 proof  Yukon Jack.  The "Black sheep of Canadian Liqueur".  Sometimes on the rocks , but neat is my choice. This nectar is thick and syrupy, boldly flavorful, yet surprisingly smooth. There is no other spirit like this!   I wonder if I was dropped on my head as a child?
Well  Stevi  over at Two at the Most is to blame for me letting the cat out of the bag by choosing Guilty Pleasures as this months Mixology Monday theme. I hope I don't get kicked off the island.

Thanks Stevi. I owe you one.



Mixology Monday
Mixology Monday - July 28, 2008


I could not make it to Tales of the Cocktail this year, so I made myself a different NOLA drink each day I missed. The first day I had a Sazerac. As soon as I dropped off my luggage I would have went straight to the Carousel Bar and had one.


In a chilled Cocktail glass ad a teaspoon of Absinthe, coat the inside of the glass and discard the rest.
In mixing glass add:
sugar cube soaked in Peychaud's Bitters
2 oz Sazerac Rye and stir
add ice and stir strain into chilled glass

The next day the drink I had was a Ramos Gin Fizz ,aka New Orleans Fizz.
Ramos Gin Fizz
Ramos Gin Fizz
Crappy photo but the drink was great. It always is.
This drink takes a little more work to make.

1 1/2 ounces Dry Gin
1/2 ounce Lemon Juice
1/2 ounce Lime Juice
2 Tbs. Cream
1 small Egg White (fresh)
1/4 ounce Soda Water
1 Tbs. Powdered Sugar
3 to 4 dashes Orange Flower Water

Put the Egg White and Orange Flower Water in a shaker and shake hard for 30 seconds. This will give you a good froth. (Add the spring off your hawthorne strainer in the shaker to make the egg froth with less work)    Next ad the gin, cream, both juices, sugar and ice in with your egg into the shaker.   Shake it hard till you get a good frost.   Strain into a chilled glass and top off with soda water. I like to use a Soda Siphon for this.

On the third day I had a Brandy Crusta.
The Brandy Crusta was originally invented in 1852 by Joseph Santina as an employee of the Jewel of the South, on Gravier Street, in New Orleans.
Brandy Crusta
Brandy Crusta

1 ½ oz Brandy
¾ oz Cointreau
¾ oz fresh lemon juice
dash of maraschino liqueur
dash of Peychaud’s bitters
Shake and strain into a glass rimmed with sugar
Garnish with spiral of lemon peel
The way to do this is to cut off both ends of a lemon and use a bar spoon to run around in the pith to cut out the inside without cutting through the outside.

On the forth day I enjoyed a Pimm's Cup just as I would have had at the Napoleon house.
Pimm's Cup
Pimm's Cup

Fill a tall 12 oz glass with ice and add 1 1/4 oz. Pimm's #1 and 1.5oz lemon juice and 1.5oz simple syrup.    Then top off with 7up.    Garnish with cucumber.

On the fifth day of my sadness of not being at Tales, I enjoyed a Vieux Carre.
I had never had this drink before.   "I like it." You can find a video of the drink by Robert Hess on the Small Screen Network.
Vieux Carre
Vieux Carre

3/4 oz Brandy
3/4 oz rye whiskey
3/4 oz sweet vermouth
1/4 oz Benedictine
dash Peychaud's Bitters
dash Angostura Bitters
stir with ice
strain into glass
garnish: lemon twist



Thid Drink was part of Mixology Monday on June 16, 2008.

After the American Revolution, pioneers ventured west over the Allegheny Mountains. Many stopped and made a life for themselves in an area of what is now Kentucky and was originally the Kentucky District of Virginia. - Bourbon County, Virginia, was established in 1785. This vast county was carved into many smaller ones, early in the 19th century and many people continued to call the region “Old Bourbon.”.. Located within “Old Bourbon” was an important Ohio River port at Maysville, Kentucky which was then called Limestone. It was the principal Ohio River port from which whiskey and other products were shipped to market.. “Old Bourbon” was stenciled on the barrels to indicate their port of origin. In time, BOURBON became the name for any corn-based whiskey. Today according to federal law, bourbon must be made with at least 51% corn, distilled at less than 160 proof, and aged for at least two years in new, charred oak barrels and be made within the United States.
This Mixology Monday I present to you, in recognition to those intrepid pioneers who ventured over those mountains to start a chain of events that brought us the Bourbon in this cocktail called.......



1 ounce Bourbon
1 ounce Dry vermouth
1 1/2 teaspoons Blackberry brandy
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh Lemon juice
1 Lemon peel twist

Put all except Lemon twist in a shaker, add ice and shake hard for 20 seconds. Strain into a chilled Cocktail glass. Add lemon twist and serve.

Just to let you know, 1 1/2 teaspoons is the same as 1/2 tablespoon or the same as 1/4 ounce.

This month lets give a big thanks to Scofflaws Den for hosting MixMo.




Here in Indianapolis we are two hours north of Churchill Downs and the running of the 134th Kentucky Derby. But we can still enjoy it on TV with a Mint Julep in hand. The Mint Julep has been around long before it became associated with the Derby. According to Chris McMillian {a famous New Orleans bartender}a Julep was written about as early as the 17th century by Milton. -- Bill Samuels Jr., president of Maker's Mark Distillery stated that even though it is not the first account of the drink, the Mint Julep first appeared in print in 1803, being described as a “dram of spirituous liquor that has mint in it, taken by Virginians in the morning." in Travels of Four Years and a Half in the United States of America by John Davis. Today the spirit of choice is bourbon.
If we trace this drink back to its origin, it started out as a delicate drink in Persia named gulâb. (Literally meaning “rosewater”) Do to the fact it was rose petals in sugar water. When it spread to the Mediterranean, rose petals were replaced with mint leaves. Mint is indigenous to that region. Now known as the mint julep, it soon grew in popularity throughout Europe and eventually made its way to the United States in the 17th century. Early versions were made with rye whiskey, rum, and most any other spirit available.

Mint Julip Mint Julep
Mint Julep

Start with a 12oz glass or a Silver Julep Cup
Drop in 6 to 12 mint leaves - Smaller more , Bigger less.
No stems. Muddled stems add bitterness
Add 1/2oz to 1oz of simple syrup
1/2oz is proper, but I like 1oz
Now gently muddle, just bruise, not crush. Crushing releases chlorophyll found in the leaf and makes for an unpleasant bitter taste.

Fill your glass with crushed ice. Use a canvas bag or a thick towel and a mallet to crush the ice in.
Pour in 2.5oz of Makers Mark
Give it a little stir and add more crushed ice till it is mounded over the top.
Take a good looking mint sprig with the stem and lay in one hand. Now smack it with the other hand. This will release the oils and that wonderful aroma. Put 2 sip sticks in one hand and use them to make a hole in the ice for the mint stem as a garnish. Place the 2 sip sticks in the ice and serve.
If to serve is picking up the drink with one hand and handing it to your other hand.
Then life is good.

If you are not watching the Derby, this is still a great drink to sip slowly as you are sitting in a rocker on the porch and watch the sun go down.


Bruce Tomlinson here. I decided to join in on the fun over at "The Spirit World"
I submitted three drinks. The rules are that the cocktail must come from an old publication and taste good.
The first 2 drinks I did a taste test with 10 people. The five that tasted the Apricot Cocktail first liked it best and the 5 that tasted the Santa Barbara first liked it best. Go Figure

Raiders of the Lost Cocktail - Apricot Brandy

This one comes from page 23 of The Savoy Cocktail Book
1/4 Lemon Juice
1/4 Orange Juice
1/2 Apricot Brandy
1 Dash Dry Gin
Shake well and strain into cocktail glass

This one is from page 150 of 1934 “Cocktail Bill” Boothby’s — World Drinks and how to mix them
Whiskey……….. 1/2 jigger
Apricot Brandy…. 2 dashes
Grapefruit…….. 1/4 jigger
Sugar Syrup……. 2 dashes
Stir well with ice, strain into chilled cocktail glass and serve

This one comes from the 1940
Patrick Gavin Duffy on page 152
1 Dash Gin
1/3 Sweet Cream
2/3 Apricot Brandy
Shake well and strain into glass.
Use glass number 1
The front of the book has drawings of glassware. Glass number 1 looks to be a sherry glass.
Regular cream is sweet cream.


The Winning cocktail hailed from the Savoy Cocktail Book and kudos' goes out to the two winners participants — Charlie Oat from the Connecticut School of Bartending, and Jay from Oh, Gosh! —both suggested the Claridge ,,,my hat is off to the two participants.

On a further note. I am sad to say that  Raiders of the lost Cocktail  has seemed to have died.    Maybe a "Corpse Reviver No. 2" might help.




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