Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Sunset Cocktail: Brandy Alexander Day, January 31st

2 oz Maison Rouge Cognac
1 oz Godiva Chocolate Liqueur
1 oz Cream
dash Nutmeg garnish

Shake with Ice and strain into a chilled Cocktail glass. Garnish with Nutmeg.

For National Brandy Alexander Day I'm making the first Brandy Alexander I've ever made outside of Bartending School.This one was made with Almond Milk which did add a noticeable, but certainly not unpleasant flavor. It just didn't add the super richness actual cream would have. I didn't really mind that at all.

A sweet desert drink with a lot of flavor but it's perhaps lost on me. While I do love a nice piece of Chocolate, especially with Almonds, I've never really liked Chocolate alcoholic beverages. I even hate chocolate stouts. Maybe I'd like it better if I had a Dark Chocolate Liqueur.

One thing to take note of, I've added a Google Calendar for all of the Sunset Cocktail Holidays that you can check out on the side. Follow along and maybe you can see what's coming ahead if you weren't one of the 5 people who actually picked up a physical copy of The 2017 Sunset Cocktails Calendar. It's fun to fund fresh reasons to drink. As I look at it I seem to have missed Bubble Bath Day...

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Sunset Cocktail: Requiem for an Old Friend

1 1/2 oz Ardbeg Scotch
1/2 oz Fernet-Branca
1/2 oz Dolin Blanc
1/2 oz Dolin Rouge
1 dash Berg and Hauke's Jerry Thomas Bitters

Stir with ice and starin into an Old Fashoned Glass. Lament.

The original called for Zirbenz Stone Pine Liqueur with the option of subbing it with Fenret if it was unavailable. It was also supposed to be built in a glass full of ice instead of stirred but I posted on the way my beleaguered mind resorted to making it. I just needed a drink.

My Wacom Cintiq graphics Tablet died for good today. I'm at a loss as it was the most important piece of design kit I have. I'll look into getting it repaired or a replacement but I don't have the cash. Just about eveything I'm working on is going to have to go on hold for a while. I'm not happy but I can still make a nice drink.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Sunset Cocktail: National Irish Coffee Day

1 1/2 oz Jameson Black Barrel Whiskey
2 tsp Raw Sugar
6 oz Hot Coffee
Heavy Cream*

Add Whiskey and sugar to a prewarmed coffee mug. Add the coffee and stir until sugar is disolved. Use the spoon to float cream on top. Remove the spoon (don't stir) and sip the coffee through the cream.

Today is National Irish Coffee Day. January 25th is also Burns Night so my first inclination was to make a Scotch Coffee as a variation to cover both as there's no real appeal to trying haggis. Unfortunately it seems the origin of "Scotch Coffee" is a derogatory reference to the Scottish stereotype of  excessive frugality made with of hot water, milk, sugar and a handful of burnt breadcrumbs. I decided to stay with the standard.

Having been brought up as a good Irish Catholic**, drinking Jameson has pretty much been a family tradition. Up until now I've only every had the standard triple distilled so I figured I'd get a bottle of the Black Barrel. This may now be my favorite Irish Whiskey. That being said, I haven't really broadened my taste for Irish Whiskey much outside of Jameson but now I feel like I have to pick up a few more brands to give them a try. Any suggestions?

* Non dairy creamers work but may not float as well. For the love of Nodens, DON'T USE A FLAVORED CREAMER! Irish or Whipped Cream have been known to work well if you want added sweetness.

** That is until my father got into an argument with Father McKenzie of St. Bernard's and we switched to St, Ann's Roman Catholic church as Father Gambino was a much more pleasant gentleman. They went back to  St. Bernard's many years later after Father McKenzie died in Las Vegas.

You have no idea how much joy it brings me to be able to link the two major religious figures from my childhood to a Beatles' song and a Cosa Nostra crime family.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Sunset Cocktail: Orange Russian on Inaguration Day

2 oz Death's Door Vodka
1/2 oz Tia Maria Coffee liqueur
2(is) oz Orange Juice

Measure Vodka and Liqueur unto an ice filled Old Fashioned glass. Top with Orange Juice and stir. Garnish with an orange peel comb-over.

Today, on January 20th, our new president was sworn in despite CNN's veiled plead for an assassination. Like him or not, he's top dog, that's how the system works. Without getting too political, it is now quite obvious that whatever side of the fence you're on, you're probably paying a lot more attention now. That alone is good.

In celebration/commiseration I've decided to make this cocktail, exerting my First Ammendment rights of satire at our new POTUS, calling it The Orange Russian. If any of you take this too seriously, please, reconsider the state in which you view the world, we already make it terrible enough for each other. If people have to cry, at least make them laugh as well.

This is an appropriate blend of a Tootsie Roll shot and a White Russian. Much like the choices in this election, I don't really like either of these drinks to start with but here it is. It can either be considered a Classic drink gone afoul to be more suitable for a more common palate or a frat boy's shooter that is trying to appear as a legitimate drink that should be sipped... and endured... for at least 4 years. Either way it does actually taste like Tootsie Rolls. Tootsie Rolls and wrong.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Sunset Cocktail: Quoth the Raven on Edgar Allan Poe's Birthday

2 oz. Whistle Pig Rye
1/2 oz. Averna
1 bsp Butterfly Boston Absinthe
1 bsp Rich Gomme Syrup
2 dashes Berg and Hauke's Jerry Thomas Bitters

Stir everything with ice and strain into a chilled Old Fashioned glass. Garnish with Lemon twisted over the glass and discarded.

Today, January 19th, is Edgar Allan Poe's birthday. I did seem to miss adding this to the 2017 Sunset Cocktails Calendar this year but I'll endevour to add it to whatever I do for next year, if I do something for next year.

I was looking for a drink to make in honor of this great, grim poet today but what was out there fell short of expectations. There is a decent looking cocktail actually named the Edgar Allen Poe but it seemed far too sweet. I came across the simplistic and nausia inducing Nevermore (and yet another here with gimicky black vodka) and a not too terrible sounding Raven Cocktail but none of these seemed right. My quest continued.

It would seem that there is a rumor that Edgar Allan loved a good Sazerac above all other drinks. Be this fact or internet legend is not for me to proclaim but it gave me direction and purpose, as a good Sazerac often does. Besides, if it's on the internet and it suits my adgenda, I shall embrace it as truth.

At first I decided to make something of a Sazerac variation in line with my collection of other Blackened Cocktails. I looked to a Cooper's Union for a bit of inspiration as it added a 1/2 ounce of Elderflower Liqueur to it's mix (I would use Averna instead), but otherwiseI kept much of the the original Sazerac as it was. This, however, ended up with just me adding a half ounce of Averna to the way I usually make an old school Sazerac.

I then decided to patch up an Improved Whiskey Cocktail which has a wonderfully similar taste profile to a Sazerac, but with more room to manipulate. I went with Imbibe Magazine's version of the Improved Cocktail  and give it the Averna blackening by subtitutiing out the Luxardo (and, well, adding a wee bit more than half a teaspoon). Then I tapped into both my absolutely favorite Rye and a favorite Absinthe and came up with this: "Quoth the Raven". Nothing is too good for Mr. Poe.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Sunset Cocktail: Hot Maple Buttered Rum on National Hot Buttered Rum Day

1 small slice of softened Sweet Butter
1/4 oz Maple Syrup
1 dash ground Allspice
1 tiny dash of Vanilla Extract
2 oz Kraken Rum
1 Cinnamon Stick
6 oz Hot Water
1 dash ground Nutmeg

Place Butter, Syrup, Allspice, Vanilla, and Rum in a preheated Mug. Give it a stir with a Cinnamon Stick. Pour Hot water over, give it another stir, and garnish with Nutmeg.

There really are very few things as nice as a hot drink on a cold day. Today's cold day happens to be National Hot Buttered Rum Day which makes it all the more special. If you've never treated yourself to melted butter in a steaming mug of spiced rum you've done yourself a disservice and your life is incomplete. The amount of butter you use is up to you, I use about a tablespoon which gives me just about the right amount of buttery goodness. PSA: I have learned, suffered, and am here to spread words of divine truth... for the sake of any and every god that may or may not have ever existed do not use salted Butter!

This version is a recent take on Hot Buttered Rum and different than the Buttered Rum Toddy mentioned in the graphic from my previous CthulYule Toddy post. This is more of a standard Hot Buttered Rum, the other was a Toddy and included the use of hot tea. Personally, after trying the two recently, I like this, simpler version better. I will be perfectly honest that I made this version that substitutes the typical use of  Brown Sugar with Maple Syrup because I was in a bit of a rush and too lazy to take the time to muddle and dissolve the sugar. Plus, Maple Syrup.

I have also seen recipes for a Buttered Rum Batter. With these you make a bulk batter mix and later add it to rum and hot water allowing for the ability to make a shit-ton at once. I was hoping that these would be good for pre-making to be used over an extended period of time but the ones I came across used slightly softened Vanilla Ice Cream which I don't figure would hold up very well in the fridge. Maybe for Yule next year I'll make a bulk bottle of Buttered Rum Batter instead of an elaborate and disorganized Hot Toddy bar like this past Yule.

I do hope you enjoy following my special drinking holidays from the 2017 Sunset Cocktails Calendar so far, much more to come. I feel like I should start a new religion so we can all take these days off in observance of our holy rites. Ethanology? Spirit Spiritualism? Zen Inebriation? The Left Drink Path? Drunk Satanism? Any ideas*?

*These should already be days of note within all forms of Heathenry.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Sunset Cocktail: Hot Sazerac Toddy on National Hot Toddy Day

2 oz. Rittenhouse Rye
1/2 oz. Gomme Syrup
2 dashes Scrappy's Orleans Bitters
1 dash Hella Bitters Aromatic
6 oz. Hot Water
Butterfly Boston Absinthe Wash

Build in a heated, Absinthe washed mug. The pouring of the hot water over the other ingredients will act as mixing or you can give it a little stir. Garnish with a lemon slice drawn around the edge.

The 2017 Sunset Cocktails Calendar tells me that January 11th is National Hot Toddy Day. Even though the weather snowed out the sunset when I shot this pic last week I couldn't think of a better way to celebrate than a nice Sazerac Toddy. Plus, should I end up making another calendar next year, I feel it would need some snowy pictures. 

I've seen a few Sazerac Toddys online but I put this version together to keep it simple. Versions I've seen include using cloves and/or cinnamon, some with tea, some without. There is even one that used Absinthe (or Herbsaint) blended in the whipped cream placed on top which sounds kinda disgusting. 

This is a slightly different and simplified version than the one I mentioned in an earlier post featuring the CthulYule Toddy. Aside from the Sazerac ritual, this version keeps it as close to a common Sazerac as possible. A good variation for medicinal purposed could include a but of squeezed Lemon Juice and the use of Honey instead of Gomme Syrup, which I may try myself as I'm sick as a naked mole rat today.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Sunset Cocktail: Verte Chaud on National Whipped Cream Day

2 oz Green Chartreuse
6 oz Hot chocolate
Wet Cream
Build in heated glass or mug floating the Wet Cream on top.

If you were one of the lucky few who got your 2017 Sunset Cocktails Calendar you can follow along with many of the added important days of note added within throughout the year. I do have to say, that the ones I'll do through the winder could potentially suck if I feel like I gotta go outside and shoot a pic. Luckily, today's is a warm drink for a cold day.

I just don't get it?
I did end up completely skipping January first's Bloody Mary Day both here and in the calendar. At this point I'm not sure if it was an intentional or subconscious decision. I've never liked the damned things and when you see abominations like the ones pictured on the side here it makes my stomach hurt, even without a hangover.

Today, though, is National Whipped Cream Day. And to celebrate this nice cold january day I found a really lovely hot drink called The Verte Chaud which blends Hot Chocolate with one of my favorite liqueurs, Green Chartreuse. Now you may have noticed that the list says "Wet Cream" instead of "Whipped Cream" but they are essentially the same. Wet Cream is made just like you'd make Whipped Cream but you stop whisking a little early before the cream begins to stiffen. The airy, mostly whipped Cream sits on the top. I made this with the solids from a can of full fat coconut milk, sugar and a bit of vanilla. For the hot chocolate I used Moonstruck Chocolate Dark Chocolate Hot Cocoa Mix with heated Almond Milk.

I do suggest a nice Dark Chocolate which will go well with the Chartreuse. I also suggest cutting back on the Chartreuse a little so it doesn't overwhelm the Chocolate in the recipe as listed. A half or a whole ounce less may actually make a more pleasant drink. Please excuse my blasphemy at suggesting such a thing.