Category Archives: Triple Sec

Old Fashioned: For the Classy Boozehound

Blah, blah, blah, introduction stuff.

I mean… Hello, everyone! This week we’re classing it up with the Old Fashioned. If you want to convince people everywhere that you’re one upscale motherfucker who can’t be bothered with the trivial mediocrity of the modern masses, there’s no better way to do it than with one of these cocktails.

And Old Fashioned is so called because it refers to making cocktails the “old-fashioned way,” as a combination of spirits, sugar, bitters, and water. This is the basic formula for the cocktail we drink now, but modern society has also seen fit to add a bunch of fruit to it. So yeah, that’s a thing.

If you want to learn more about the Old Fashioned cocktail, might I suggest this as a starting point. In the meantime, however, let’s drink.

Old Fashioned
-2 1/2 oz Bourbon or Rye
-1/4 oz Simple Syrup
-2 dashes Angostura bitters
-Lemon Peel

Old-Fashioned

Mmm. Whiskey candy. But very manly, robust candy, of course. Seriously, I use the word candy, but this is still mostly whiskey, and it is still something you should avoid if you can’t handle that.

In any case, the Old Fashioned is an exemplar of cocktail balance — the type of balance we wish our government had. Liquor tempered by a little bit of something bitter and a little bit of something sweet, with a little bit of water to blend it all together. The lemon peel makes it smell amazing. Perfection.

You can feel free to experiment with the proportions (and different recipes will recommend different proportions), but don’t change it too much, or you’ll get something cloying and disgusting or something biting and undrinkable. It’s all about balance.

Start with a rocks glass. Add ice if you want, but drinking it at room temperature is acceptable, too. Combine the liquid ingredients and stir. Twist the lemon peel over the drink and drop it in.

“New” Old Fashioned
-2 Orange Slices
-2 Maraschino Cherries
-1 Sugar Cube
-2 dashes Angostura Bitters
-2 1/2 oz Bourbon or Rye
-Club Soda (optional)

"New" Old-Fashioned

This is the monstrosity that modern drink culture has made of the Old Fashioned. If you want to make your Old Fashioned more fruity, this is a good way to do it, but my god the club soda. Skip the club soda. It really has no place here, and having bubbles in your drink isn’t worth the over-dilution. The fruit, however, is okay. An Old Fashioned really doesn’t need the fruit to begin with (and there are plenty of people who would want to see you hanged for bringing a maraschino cherry anywhere near an Old Fashioned), but I understand letting the cocktail evolve, so long as we remember that this is not the original, and that the original is much better.

Back to the club soda. You should skip the club soda. If you can’t handle this cocktail without the dilution of club soda, then the Old Fashioned just isn’t for you. It simply wasn’t meant to be. Skip the club soda, keep the fruit, and this could be a good introduction to the Old Fashioned cocktail if you think you need to ease into it some.

Start by muddling one orange slice, one cherry (stem removed), the sugar cube, and the bitters in the bottom of a rocks glass. Add ice and whiskey, stir, and then please leave the club soda for the Mojitos where it belongs. Garnish with the remaining orange slice and cherry.

Brandy Old Fashioned
-2 1/2 oz Brandy
-1/4 oz Simple Syrup
-2 dashes Angostura Bitters
-Lemon Peel

Brandy Old-Fashioned

In case you couldn’t figure it out, this is just an Old Fashioned with brandy. I know that might seem super complicated and esoteric, but try to stay with me.

I’m not a huge fan of brandy, but this is a good cocktail. This is is probably the reason why the liquor-bitters-sugar-water formula was the old standard for making spirits drinkable — because it makes brandy drinkable. It’s really a great way to enhance the flavor of a spirit without threatening its integrity. The natural sweetness of brandy is really nice here, and this drink is very pleasantly aromatic.

Since brandy is traditionally enjoyed neat, I opted not to add ice to this drink. Feel free to add ice f you want. If you don’t add ice, though, it might be more appropriate and infinitely fancier to use a brandy snifter instead of a rocks glass. I do not have a brandy snifter, so I used the rocks glass shown above. C’est la vie.

Make it the same way you make a regular Old Fashioned. Also, yes, I did forget the lemon peel. Woops.

Onward!

Eccentric Old Fashioned
-2 oz Blended Whiskey
-1 dash Curaçao
-1/2 tsp Sugar
-Lemon Peel Spiral

Eccentric Old-Fashioned

I’m not sure what makes this cocktail eccentric, and without bitters, I’m not sure what makes it an Old Fashioned. Perhaps the lack of bitters makes it eccentric, but then it’s no longer an Old Fashioned, and oh my we’ve entered a repeating loop. My bad.

All that being said, it’s a pleasant enough drink. It’s nice and light, and has a lovely aroma. I certainly do not prefer it to the regular Old-Fashioned, but it’s not bad. If you just want tome sweetened whiskey that smells nice then this is the drink. If you want an Old Fashioned, however, you should throw this drink in the trash and look elsewhere on this list.

Start by putting the lemon peel spiral in a rocks glass. Then shake the rest of the ingredients and strain the mix into the glass. Enjoy!

Canadian Old Fashioned
-2 1/2 oz Canadian Whisky
-1/4 oz Triple Sec
-1 dash Fresh Lemon Juice
-2 dashes Angostura Bitters
-1/4 oz Simple Syrup
-Lemon Peel

Canadian Old-Fashioned

Okay, this is pretty good. So far this night, I haven’t found a drink that I might order instead of an Old-Fashioned. Until now. Well, I actually wouldn’t order this, because the bartender would more likely think that I just want an Old Fashioned with Canadian whisky. And Canadian whisky just can’t match bourbon, at least when it comes to Old-Fashioneds. And besides, I can’t be seen ordering Canadian whisky. I have an image to uphold.

I kid, but Canadian whisky has its strong points, and this drink, with the extra ingredients, is very interesting. The lemon juice gives it a tea-like quality, and it totally works. It’s light and tasty. I don’t like it more than a regular Old Fashioned, but there would be times where I would prefer it.

In any case, put ice in a rocks glass, add all of the liquid ingredients, stir, and garnish with the lemon peel.

Scotch Old Fashioned
-2 1/2 oz Scotch
-1/4 oz Simple Syrup
-2 dashes Angostura Bitters
-Lemon Peel

Scotch Old-Fashioned

Should I take the low-hanging fruit here? I think I will.

I love scotch. Scotchy, scotch, scotch. Here it goes down, down into my belly. Mmm, mmm, mmm.

Haha! Pop cultural references to successful comedy movies are a humor gold mine!

Also, expect me to quote Anchorman any time I drink scotch. I’m not even sorry.

Anyway, most scotch enthusiasts will tell you that you should never add anything to scotch, expect maybe a few drops of water and maybe a lemon twist. Possibly ice if they’re liberal about it.

Despite all that, scotch is used in a number of cocktails. It’s not as popular as bourbon, but it does have a number of mixed drinks backing it up. That being said, I completely understand why someone would be against scotch cocktails. Scotch is really good and really expensive. Well, not all of it is great, but even the cheapest scotch is more expensive than most upper-middle shelf liquors. Note that I didn’t say it was better than those liquors; you can buy cheap vodka, but never buy cheap scotch.

And that might be why people are opposed to scotch cocktails — they spent a lot of money on their scotch, and they don’t want to waste it by combining it with other things. And to be sure, there are definitely things you should never do with your scotch. For example, if you ever decide to combine your scotch with blue curaçao, you deserve at least a five year prison sentence. Bitters and sugar, however, seem acceptable to me.

This cocktail is absolutely delicious. There’s a lot of differences between different types of scotch (I used Glenfiddich 12 year, for the record), and so this cocktail will vary a lot depending on what scotch you use. However, I can still say that this cocktail makes scotch more appealing to the average pallet, and if you’re interested in getting into scotch, this is a good work-your-way-in cocktail, so long as you have a per-existing taste for whiskey. If you do not have a taste for whiskey yet, I suggest you start with a different cocktail, both for getting into scotch and for getting into whiskey in general.

The following paragraph was written while sober. Hey, folks. Sober Dave here. Sometimes when writing these posts, Drunk Dave can’t quite find the words for something, so he leave notes to me to make sure I cover something important that he couldn’t quite get out. This time he left me the note: “TALK ABOUT SMOKINESS AND SHIT.” So, I suppose I should say that this cocktail, being scotch-based is smokey. However, the smokiness is tempered by the other ingredients, really making it less offensive to someone who might not be completely down with the who smokey thing. Okay. I know return you to your regularly-scheduled programming.

Make this drink the same way you would make a regular Old Fashioned. Since scotch is the base ingredient, I opted to skip the ice this time, but there’s no shame if you want to add ice.

Denouement
Well, today I really learned that you can’t improve upon perfection. Some variations of the Old Fashioned are quite good, but the original is a classic for a reason. Either way, I’ve spoken too much, so go have some whiskey, you beautiful bastards.


Ringing in the New Year: Champagne Cocktails

Well, folks, it’s almost 2013. What are you doing for New Year’s? Do you have someone to kiss at midnight? If so, then maybe this post will give you something nice to share with your sweetheart. If not, then maybe this post will help you forget how lonely you are.

This post is dedicated to New Year’s, and as such I’m exploring various champagne cocktails. Well, fine, sparkling wine cocktails for all you purists. In any case, since New Year’s is often a time when people break out the bubbly, I thought this would be a good opportunity to break out the bubbly for myself. Wine cocktails aren’t as popular as ones based around liquor, and you should by no means be using expensive wine for these cocktails. That being said, wine cocktails are still pretty great if done right.

So, since the world didn’t end last week, let’s celebrate that it’s going to continue into a new year next week. Here are eight cocktails based around sparkling wine.

 

Classic Champagne Cocktail
-2 to 3 dashes Angostura Bitters
-1 Sugar Cube
-White Sparkling Wine
-Lemon Twist

Classic Champagne Cocktail

Classic Champagne Cocktail

Here’s a very simple and straightforward sparkling wine cocktail. Bitters, sugar, and wine. That’s all you need. Well, the lemon peel is important too. The garnishes in these drinks are actually extremely noticeable and add quite a lot. So, if possible, don’t skip the garnishes this time around.

In any case, this drink is yummy, a little spicy from the bitters, and watching the bubbles rise from the sugar cube is really cool. The bubbles, by the way, help the sugar dissolve, much in the same way alcohol helps you to forget that you’ve wasted another year. Though, without some stirring, it’s unlikely that all of the sugar will dissolve. But that’s not a huge deal.

Anyway, to make this, put the sugar cube in the bottom of a champagne flute, soak the cube in bitters, and top with champagne. Twist the lemon peel over the drink, rim the glass with it, and drop it in.

Enjoy, and move on to some more bubbly.

 

French 75
-1 oz Gin
-1/2 oz Lemon Juice
-1 tsp Sugar
-White Sparkling Wine
-Orange Twist

French 75

French 75

This is another popular and classic champagne cocktail. It’s pretty good, too. It’s full of citrus and bubbles and goodness, though it might be a little tarter than you’re expecting. But it’s good, and it’s a classic for a reason.

Also, it’s really pretty with the orange peel. And classy. If you’re throwing a classy New Year’s party, then this might make your guests feel sophisticated and cultured — “French” is in the name of this cocktail, after all. This is a good idea, because there’s really nothing better than feeling classy while you get shitfaced. This is probably a rule the French learned from the Russians.

So, shake the gin, lemon juice, and sugar with ice and strain it into a champagne flute. Top it off with champagne, and garnish with the orange twist as you would with a lemon twist.

 

Blue Champagne
-1 oz Vodka or Gin
-1/4 oz Blue Curacao
-1/4 oz Lemon Juice
-1 Splash Triple Sec
-White Sparkling Wine

Blue Champagne

Blue Champagne

If you’re having a less than classy party, it’s time to bring out the blue booze, isn’t it? For whatever reason, people love bright blue drinks, just like they love bright blue pills. Break this out at a party and people will likely go nuts. Hell, you could probably just add blue food coloring to champagne, and you’d automatically be the life of the party. People are easy to please, no?

However, this is probably a better drink to have for a party, since the shot of hard liquor will make people happier. This drink tastes really good, but don’t let the blue fool you — it’s not particularly sweet, at least not for a drink that uses blue curacao (depending on what sparkling wine you use, of course). This will surprise some guests if they’re looking for something sweet. And, let’s face it, if they want something blue, they probably want something sweet. I don’t know why that’s the rule, but such is the way of things.

Making this drink is as easy as anything, though, so you might as well make it for happy-go-lucky party guests. Pour the first four ingredients into a champagne flute and then top with the wine. Drink and enjoy.

 

Chicago
-Lemon Wedge
-Sugar
-1 ½ oz Brandy
-1/4 tsp Cointreau (or Triple Sec)
-2 dashes Angostura Bitters
-White Sparkling Wine

Chicago

Chicago

Oh, this drink. This is the drink that my fiancee tried and said, “Tastes like old man.” That about sums it up. That about sums about any brandy drink, come to think of it. I guess if you like to lick old men, then this drink might be for you. If not, then I’m glad you’re still a valuable member of society, and I’m going to recommend against this drink.

This drink is pretty heavy on the brandy. I don’t like brandy, and this drink did not change my opinion of it. With the sugared rim it’s pretty easy to swallow, but it’s still brandy, and brandy is still gross — still a step above Scotch, but still gross. If you like brandy, you’ll probably like this. If you don’t like brandy, you’re not going to like this.

Though as much as I deride this drink, it is quite complex and is worth something in it’s own right. I just hate brandy, so its merits were lost on me. Perhaps they will not be lost on you.

To make this drink, start by rimming a white wine glass with the lemon wedge and sugar. Then shake the brandy, Cointreau or triple sec, and bitters with ice. Strain it into the prepared glass and top with the wine. Try to gulp it down and enjoy.

Very thankfully moving on.

 

French Champagne Cocktail
-1 Sugar Cube
-2 dashes Angostura Bitters
-1/2 oz Crème de Cassis
-White Sparkling Wine

French Champagne Cocktail

French Champagne Cocktail

There’s nothing particularly French about this as far as I can tell, so perhaps the name is a misnomer. Even so, this cocktail isn’t half bad. It’s sweet, it’s a little fruity, and it’s damn nice. If you’re spending New Year’s with that special someone and no one else, this could be a great romantic drink to enjoy with your honey before, at, and after midnight.

I also appreciate this cocktail because crème de cassis is a great and delicious ingredient, but it isn’t used enough. And when it is used, it is used in very small amounts (though probably for good reasons, since it’s so cloying). This drink uses a full half ounce of the stuff, which is as most of it as I’ve ever seen of it in a drink. The crème de cassis is a great addition here, and this drink is all the better for it.

Put the sugar cube in the bottom of a champagne flute, soak it with the bitters, add the crème de cassis, and slowly top with the sparkling wine.
This drink is great, but let’s try a slightly classier version of it.

 

Kir Imperiale
-1 (small) splash Chambord
-White Sparkling Wine
-Lemon Twist

Kir Imperiale

Kir Imperiale

If you want to make the more popular Kir Royale, replace the Chambord with crème de cassis, and use a little less of it. However, I wanted it to taste like raspberries, so I made this version, instead. I also increased the amount of Chambord. The recipe I have says to use a teaspoon, but I wanted the raspberry flavor to come out more. But, if you do increase it from a teaspoon, don’t overdo it. You don’t want it to be too sweet.

And if you’re making a Kir Royale, the suggested amount of crème de cassis is a half teaspoon, so if you’re using crème de cassis, be even more conservative about increasing the amount of liqueur.

Anyway, this drink is nice and full of delicious raspberry flavor. Anyone who loves Chambord will love this. Since it’s such a small amount of Chambord, it doesn’t affect the flavor in a huge way, but it smooths it out and mutes astringency of the champagne. Even in small amounts, it’s an important ingredient and makes for an interesting drink.

Rim the glass with the twist, drop it in, add the Chambord, and top with sparkling wine.

Moving on!

 

Champagne Fizz
-1 oz Gin
-1 oz Lemon Juice
-1/2 oz Simple Syrup
-Sparkling White Wine

Champagne Fizz

Champagne Fizz

I guess fizzes are more of summer-type drinks, but whatever. Booze is booze, and sparkling wine is sparkling wine. Drink what you want, no matter the season, mate.

So this is a good little drink, with the old sweet-and-sour blueprint helping it out. The gin is not that noticeable in taste, but it definitely adds to the aroma and to the aftertaste. It lends some very nice notes to the drink, but not overpowering notes at all. This drink remains, at the end of the day, a champagne drink, and that’s exactly what it tastes like. If you enjoy gin or fizzes, then try this one out. It’s simple to make and complex to taste. And pretty damn good.

Pour the first three ingredients into a champagne flute and top with sparkling wine. Simple enough, right?

Last drink!

 

Irish Champagne Cocktail
-1 Sugar Cube
-2 dashes Angostura Bitters
-1 oz Irish Whiskey
-White Sparkling Wine
-Lemon Twist

Irish Champagne Cocktail

Irish Champagne Cocktail

And here’s the whiskey. Oh whiskey. I have recently become friends with bourbon (to the surprise of everyone, including myself), but I haven’t become such friends with Irish whiskey yet. However, Irish whiskey is really smooth and easy to drink, and it’s not Scotch, so it’s not completely awful. So, even though I haven’t developed a taste for Irish whiskey yet, it’s not the worst thing ever, and in a cocktail like this, it works alright.

This drink is really just the first drink I made but with a shot of Jameson’s or Bushmill’s or whatever Irish whiskey you prefer. So it’s a little sweet, a little spicy, and it has a good whiskey kick to it. It’s also a lot more alcoholic, so that’s really fun, especially at midnight.

You could probably try this with other whiskeys, but other whiskeys aren’t necessarily as smooth as Irish whiskey. Bourbon, Scotch, and rye would definitely be a lot more noticeable in such a cocktail. Canadian whisky might be appropriate, though.

In any case, put the sugar cube in the bottom of a champagne flute, soak it in bitters, add the whiskey, and fill the glass with the wine. Garnish with the twist because you’re a fancy motherfucker, and get drunk off of your spiked wine.

 

Denouement

Happy New Year’s, folks. Don’t drink to much, and either stay where you are or designate a driver. See you next year! (Bet you haven’t heard that joke before.)


I’ll Be Drunk for Christmas: Holiday Drinks

December is here, and that means you can’t get away from holiday themes and decorations everywhere — which has technically been true for the past three months. September, we hardly knew ye.

As it turns out, this blog is no exception to the rule, since I more than happy to welcome the extra traffic that will come in from search engine hits if I do a holiday theme.

So welcome to my post for the holidays! Hopefully most of these drinks will be somewhat non-denominational (I mean, Christmas doesn’t have a monopoly on peppermint, right?), but there might be a few drinks specific to one holiday. Maybe next year I’ll really get into the whole denominational thing, and do an eight crazy shots post or something. Sounds fun.

In any case, no matter what you celebrate this year, it’s a great time for family, love, kindness, and alcohol. Lots of alcohol. After all, you are going to be seeing your family, so it’s kind of a necessity. So while you’re giving your loved ones the gift of junk you wouldn’t buy for yourself, give yourself the gift of intoxication. Here’s eight drinks to enjoy this season.

 

Holly Berry
-1 1/2 oz Raspberry Vodka
-1/2 oz Triple Sec
-1/4 oz Rose’s Lime Juice
-3 oz Cranberry Juice
-Holly Sprig without Berries

The Holly Berry

The Holly Berry

I think the recipe book I got this from just decided to make a reddish drink and add a holly sprig to it to make it look relevant to the season. With that in mind, I encourage you to use this method to invent your own festive holiday drinks — just be sure to pluck off all the berries (they are poisonous) and wash the sprig. Hell, you can use a plastic replica for all I care. Just whatever you do, don’t die.

In any case, this drink is pretty good, even if its inventor was really lazy when thinking it up. Despite being mostly raspberry vodka and cranberry juice, it’s not overly tart at all. In fact, the flavor of the triple sec is very noticeable, making for a very nice orange taste. In the end, all the flavors of the drink work very well together, much in the same way that all the religions in America don’t this time of year.

To make this, shake the liquid ingredients with ice, strain the mix into a martini glass, and garnish with the holly sprig. Or, if you’re not trying to impress anyone, go ahead and skip this garnish. Your call.

Moving on…

 

Vanilla Dark and Stormy
-2 oz Dark Rum
-1 dash Vanilla Extract
-Ginger Beer
-Lime Wedge

Vanilla Dark and Stormy

Vanilla Dark and Stormy

So this is seasonal in that vanilla and ginger are both flavors associated with the season. Other than that, it’s not very special. However, it is pretty good. Just be ready for the ginger beer. If you haven’t tasted ginger beer before, it’s kind of weird, and it can be as shocking as waking up to cat butt, though definitely not as unpleasant.

Personally, I am not a huge fan of ginger beer, but it’s definitely not a bad flavor. It is weird at first, but it’s good. Unfortunately, the vanilla flavor isn’t all that noticeable in this drink, but you will get hints of it here and there. It’s nice when you do notice it, anyway. Either way, this is a good and easy cooler for the holiday season, so if you’re a fan of ginger, give this a try.

To make, just pour the liquid ingredients in a tall glass of ice and stir. Squeeze the lime wedge over the drink and drop it in. Not the most complicated of holiday drinks, but not bad at all.

Let’s make something a little more pretty.

 

Angel’s Delight
-3/4 oz Gin
-3/4 oz Triple Sec
-2 to 3 dashes Grenadine
-1 oz Cream

Angel's Delight

Angel’s Delight

Isn’t this drink pretty? The deep red is very appropriate for the season, and the cream on top looks like a mound of snow or the trim on Santa’s suit. It’s just… oh, so pretty. I almost didn’t want to drink it.

But drink it I did, and it was delicious. Grenadine and gin compliment each other very well, and the triple sec throws in a little bit of complexity for the occasion. The cream is wonderful and fluffy as it just sits on top.

So, it’s pretty, it’s yummy, and it’s alcoholic. I suppose not much else is required to make something angelic. Especially when I’m three drinks in.

Shake all of the ingredients except the cream with ice and strain it into a champagne flute. Then carefully float the cream on top of the rest of the drink. You can also use a wine glass or a martini glass for this cocktail. I chose the champagne flute because it looks prettier.

 

Evergreen
-1 1/2 oz Gin
-1/2 oz Dry Vermouth
-1/2 oz Melon Liqueur
-1 dash Lemon Juice
-1 splash Blue Curacao
-Maraschino Cherry

Evergreen

Evergreen

Gin always did kind of taste like a tree, so this seems like a natural fit for it. This is essentially a Kyoto Cocktail, but with the addition of blue curacao and a cherry. It’s not bad, but in all honesty, the lemon juice really conflicts with the melon liqueur. The recipe is clearly following the sweet ingredient and sour ingredient blueprint, but I don’t think it works here.

Other than that, the drink isn’t bad. The melon is nice, the gin gives that slight tree-like taste, and biting into the cherry at the end is a great finisher. It is also pretty, so that’s worth something. Go light on the lemon juice, and it might impress some guests. Otherwise, this drink will overwhelm you, and that nice tree-like taste will quickly start to feel like that one scene from Evil Dead that Sam Raimi later regretted.

Shake the gin, vermouth, melon liqueur, and lemon juice with ice and strain it into a martini glass. Top it with a splash of blue curacao and drop the cherry in. It’s pretty, but not as good as some of the others on this list.

Now let’s look at peppermint, that ever-popular holiday flavor.

 

Candy Cane Twist
-1 oz Raspberry Vodka
-1/2 oz Peppermint Schnapps
-2 oz Cranberry Juice
-1/2 oz Grenadine
-1 splash Lemon-Lime Soda
-Candy Cane

Candy Cane Twist

Candy Cane Twist

Yeah, we all have probably had enough of peppermint by now. But, alas, This list would be incomplete without a peppermint-themed drink. It’s not a bad flavor at all, but it is overdone this time of year. However, this fact apparently didn’t stop me from beating this dead horse with a comically large candy cane.

This drink is nice and smooth. It’s sweet without being too sweet, and it has that peppermint flavor without being overpowering. A note on that, by the way: The peppermint flavor is kind of subtle in this drink if you use the above proportions. It gives that cool feeling without being very strong. If you want to have a stronger peppermint flavor, increase the amount of peppermint schnapps a little at a time — maybe in quarter ounce increments. Be careful though, as peppermint schnapps is one of those ingredients that is very powerful, and can overpower whatever it’s in if you put in too much.

Shake the liquid ingredients except for the soda with ice and strain it into a martini glass.  Add the soda, garnish with the candy cane and enjoy. Also, if you want to put in the effort, you can crush another candy cane and rim the glass with it. I attempted to do this, but I couldn’t get the candy cane crumbs to stick to the glass. I’m sure there’s a good way to do this, but I didn’t figure it out. If you’re up for the adventure, be my guest.

 

Christmas Shooter
-1/2 oz Grenadine
-1/2 oz Green Crème de Menthe
-1/2 oz Cream

Christmas Shooter

Christmas Shooter

Turns out we’re not quite done with mint yet, because I wanted to do at least one shot for this post. I figured that the celebratory nature of the holiday season is perfect for shots, so here’s one with Christmas colors.

Often, layered shots are made to look pretty rather than to taste good. In this case, however, it works both ways. The flavors work pretty alright together (as long as you do it as a shot, rather than sipping it the way that assholes always drink shots), and the layering actually allows you to taste each ingredient individually and in order, giving you an enjoyable progression.

Plus, it does look very pretty. Especially if it’s in a clear glass, as opposed to the yellow-ish glass I used. Apologies. It will take a few minutes to layer them all correctly, but whip up a round of these at a holiday party, and people will really like it.

To make this wonder of alcohol and thick liquids, carefully layer each ingredient into a shot glass in the order given. Depending on the size of the glass, you may have to adjust the amounts. In order to layer the ingredients, pour the first one in, and then slowly pour in the next two, using the back of a bar spoon to break the liquid’s fall just above the surface of the shot.

Once you’ve made your shot, throw it down the hatch.

 

Menorah Cocktail
-1 1/2 oz Vodka
-1/2 oz Dry Vermouth
-1 splash Blue Curacao
-Sugar
-Blueberries

Menorah Cocktail

Menorah Cocktail

Jewish readers, I’m afraid I must apologize, as I fear I have let you all down. Not only is this a week late, but, as you see, finding a good Hanukkah-themed cocktail proved a challenge for me, especially given limited ingredients. If I could get every brand the Internet recommended to me, I could make a cocktail with nothing but Israeli spirits. However, most Hanukkah-themed cocktails proved to be nothing more than normal Winter-themed cocktails. That’s all well and good, but I wanted something a bit special.

But then I learned that blue is a big Hanukkah color, and I found this allegedly blue drink that some blogger or writer had invented specifically to celebrate the lighting of the menorah. On top of that, a sugared rim always looks frosty, so that adds a nice winter touch.

However, if the picture of this drink loaded on your computer and you’re not colorblind, then you already know the problem. This drink is green, not blue. You see, the sweet vermouth colored the drink too, and it simply came out green. I’m betting the person who invented this drink doesn’t know too much about mixing drinks and most definitely never actually mixed this drink. It still works for this post, since green is a Christmas color, but that just gives Christians another drink and robs the Jews of their rightful booze. I am sincerely sorry.

The taste is pretty good, in any case. Sweet vermouth and curacao play off each other in interesting ways. I don’t know if that’s a good thing, but it is an interesting thing. You could try making this drink with dry vermouth — which would probably help keep it blue — but that would also drastically change the taste. Try it if you so choose.

First, rim a martini glass with sugar. Then shake the liquid ingredients with ice and strain it into the prepared glass, and garnish with the blueberries. I know blueberries are out of season right now, which is all the more proof that the person who invented this drink didn’t know what they were doing. I have frozen blueberries in my fridge, so that worked out for me.

 

Cinnamon Old Fashioned
-2 1/2 oz Fireball Cinnamon Whisky
-1/4 oz Simple Syrup
-2 to 3 dashes Angostura Bitters

Cinnamon Old Fashioned

Cinnamon Old Fashioned

I was going to end there, but I thought that this post would be incomplete without some cinnamon. I also wanted a stiffer drink, so I decided to whip up an Old Fashioned, but use Fireball in place of bourbon or rye. This was an on-the-fly decision, and I think it worked out well.

A note for you Old Fashioned enthusiasts, though: I know you probably think this drink is an abomination. I know that Fireball is very sweet, and is closer to a liqueur than a liquor. So, I understand how some of you will punch your screen right now, because “This isn’t a real Old Fashioned!”

Calm down, please. This drink is just for the season, and there’s no reason to get upset over a novelty.

Now that we have that out of the way, let me say that this drink works very well. It’s good, delicious, and alcoholic. What more do want from anything?

So, pour the ingredients into a rocks glass with or without ice (your preference), and stir. Also, Fireball is already kind of sweet, so feel free to reduce the amount of syrup.

 

Denouement

Happy Holidays. Be safe. Be responsible. Check back next week for a New Year’s post with champagne drinks.


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