One of my favorite things to do is Do-It-Yourself (DIY) infusions and batched cocktail projects. I've been experimenting in the laboratory for quite a while now and I still learn something new every time. The fun thing about infusing spirits, liqueurs, syrups, and waters is that there aren't a lot of rules and complicated techniques to employ. Plus, it allows for using fresh ingredients and healthier, low sugar content, less expensive, and adds a personal touch. Most of the time it's just mixing things together, taste testing and experimenting, and seeing what happens.
In celebrating "National Vodka Day", I offer up some cocktails that are classic and will look very familiar to most while others are originals with my own personal twists. The suggested vodka brand used for each cocktail is intentional based on it's character and tasting notes in relation to other ingredients. Of course, as always, you are welcome to use your own favorite vodka, but it's important to have a well-balanced cocktail even with vodka's subtle taste qualities.
(Cover photo courtesy of my friends at Liquor.com)
National Whiskey Sour Day was August 25th, but the reality is that the Whiskey Sour is a great drink that can be enjoyed all year long if made properly. With all the quality of bourbons, small-batch bourbons, and other whiskies on the market today, it is no wonder that it has stood the test of time and endures as one of the country’s most popular sour cocktail.
After a short time away, I am back to offer more delectable cocktails to enjoy on "National Rum Day" on the 16th. As usual, the brands listed for the ingredients can be easily substituted with other brands, but reflect what I recommend for those cocktails. Whether you like to sip or mix white rum, dark rum, spiced rum, black rum, or special reserve rum, there is something for all of you here.
(Minty Blue pictured above)
The Summer Rye cocktail is adapted from a traditional rye-based drink popular in fall/winter with the addition of St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur in place of Ginger Liqueur. Try both versions. The summer version has been a big hit this summer for weddings coordinated by RYS.
Sons of Liberty Spirits Company (SOL) located in the beautiful and picturesque New England region was founded to revolutionize and re-define American Whiskey. By challenging a long history of traditions, the new American Whiskey was re-born in the form of SOL Single Malt Whiskey and seasonal whiskies.
There is “The Martini” and then there are martinis and, quite often the latter has little or no resemblance to the original. The classic Gin Martini, made of gin and dry vermouth, will always remain a classic and a favorite of many. There is much debate among connoisseurs as to the ratio of the ingredients (vermouth to gin), style of gin, ice level, shaken versus stirred, and garnish that is best, but most will agree that the gin-vermouth combination is one of the classiest and best cocktails ever created.
Gin has a long and eventful history, but most people aren't familiar with all the great gins being produced around the world. Most are familar with Beefeater, Bombay, Bombay Sapphire, Tanqueray, and maybe Gordon's, but what about all those craft gins available on the market today. What is the difference between Dutch-style gin and London-dry gin? What countries produce gin?