|BarNone Drink Recipes Newsletter|
Summer is over and what a great Fall we have lined up. I want to welcome aboard two new writers! As usual, more great recipes and the Raven finishes his mystery, or does he?
We also have news of a new product as well as the usual suspects.
Please be smart, don't drink and drive! Enjoy the following recipes in moderation and take a cab if you need one.
DEKUYPER® LAUNCHES RED APPLE LIQUEUR
DeKuyper®, the best-selling line of cordials and liqueurs in the U.S., announces the launch of DeKuyper® Red Apple liqueur. DeKuyper Red Apple offers consumers the delicious taste of ripe red apple and a colorful addition to their cocktails. DeKuyper Red Apple will hit shelves beginning in October 2007.
DeKuyper has extended its flavor offerings throughout the years with its best-selling line of schnapps and liqueurs including Pucker®. The newest red apple flavor continues the DeKuyper tradition of offering fun, quality flavors to any drinks occasion.
"We continue to listen to our customers who know that DeKuyper adds the best flavor to their cocktails," said Amy Underwood, senior brand manager, DeKuyper. "DeKuyper Red Apple will be a festive addition to fall and winter cocktails with its crisp red apple flavor and bright color."
"As a leading flavor innovator in the liqueur and cordial category, we understand that it takes quality tasting flavors along with fun, festive colors to complement consumers' cocktails," continued Underwood. "DeKuyper will continue to push the flavor envelope through innovation."
The new 30-proof product will be sold in 750ml and 1L bottles. The 750ml DeKuyper Red Apple bottle has a suggested retail price of $10.99, but will vary by market.
According to the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States, cordials and liqueurs represented 14.4 percent of total spirits growth in 2006. DeKuyper, as a category leader, helped drive an overall 6.8 percent volume growth in the cordials category in 2006.
Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome back to another exciting installment of The Raven in Dial 'M' for Muddler. When we last left our hero, he had just been approached by the tantalizing Ms., uh, well, I guess I never gave her a name. For the sake of this intro, let's call her Margaret, no, Rachel, no...oh I got it, Janie. (That'll pay off later; trust me.) Ms. Janie has asked The Raven to prepare the perfect drink using her husband's collection of muddlers. We now rejoin the besotted sleuth in his adventures...
"Any of these would make a great drink, but only one of them is the right fit for a julep," I told her.
"Quit the dramatics, Raven, and tell me what I need to know."
I held one in my hand, the one that looked like a meat tenderizer. "This one looks like a meat tenderizer," I said. "You don't want to use it for mint. All you'd get is a bunch of dots on your leaves. I wouldn't release any flavor. And don't even try it for sugar." I set it aside. "Use it for citrus fruit. The pattern will loosen the juice."
"That's great," she said, "but it doesn't tell me what I want to know."
"Cool your jets, kid. I'm still a little drunk from lunch. Slow and dramatic is the only way I'm going to make it through this." I grabbed the starburst muddler. "This one's for fruit too, but hard fruit. The radial pattern will break apart the fibers and release the flavors." I looked up at her and I could tell she was about to fall asleep. I decided to use her momentary distraction to order another drink. I had started to lose my beer goggles, and didn't want to know what she really looked like. That, and I needed a chance to look over the next muddler. I'd never seen anything like it. I slammed my empty glass back down on the table. Janie sat up in her chair.
"I'm awake!" she exclaimed.
"Sure you are...anyway, this one...I've never seen anything like it. Can't imagine what it'd be good for."
"Wow, so now comes the part where you pick up the last muddler and tell me that it's the one I need, and that it will solve all my problems? Sounds like something out of a bad detective story."
"No, Ms. Smarty Skirt, this one won't solve
all of your problems. The flat end is nice,
but it has two drawbacks. First, it's great
for sugar and spices, but if you use this on
your mint leaves, it will absolutely demolish
them. You might as well have thrown them in
the blender. The second drawback is in the
flat head design. If the bottom of your
glass isn't flat, it's almost useless."
Then I heard someone scream:
"Look out, Janie's got a gnu!"
Questions started to pour through my head. Who had screamed? We were the only people in the joint. How did he know her name? The narrator had just given it to her a minute ago. How did she hide a gnu in her bag? And what was she doing with it?
"It's a typo" she said. "I've got a gun!"
Well, that answers the last two questions anyway.
"You're gonna tell me what I need or I'm gonna send you to the seminary."
"You're gonna what?"
"I'm gonna make you holey!"
It took a second for me to get the joke. I was still drunk, you remember. I reached into my coat pocket. "This is what you need," I said. I tossed her my own personal muddler. "The rounded end is perfect for crushing leaves without mutilating them. It also will allow you to muddle your sugar in any glass."
She picked it up and looked at it. With her gun still pointed at me, she gathered her things back into her purse. "My employer will be very happy to have the Raven's famed muddler."
Without hesitation, she pulled the trigger and fired. She had great aim, and the bullet found its mark. Lucky for me, she didn't stick around to make sure the job was done. Even more lucky for me, I always keep an item of deep spiritual guidance close to my heart. No bullet can pierce my flask.
"Ain't you gonna go after her?" Joe asked.
"There'll be time enough for that after you pour me another drink."
There would be time and I'd eventually have my muddler back. For now, I just wanted to rest in the arms of my dear friend, Lady Liquor.
Will The Raven ever find his muddler? Where did the other bar patron come from? Why didn't the editor catch the typo? All these questions and more might be answered in the next issue of "The Raven's Caw"!
About The Raven
J.T. "Raven" Centonze has been a long time student of the art of alcohol. Initially interested in keeping conversation at parties, his love for alcohol grew to an obsession in college. In between his real job of running a college bookstore or two, he is the part owner/operator of his own winery. He bartends at private parties which allows him the innovation of many new, unique drinks.
It's more awkward than introducing someone whose name you've forgotten but whose son you live with, more embarrassing than placing the happy birthday call three days early and just as humiliating as being busted for anything. Feeling like the only one in the world who doesn't know about wine can almost drive one off the drink, so we've come up with the answers to a few wine curlies to help you walk tall in the next wine bar.
CAN YOU CHILL RED WINE?
Yes. The reason this is even an issue is that the temperature you serve wine at affects how it tastes. Red wine is best served at room temperature, because the warmer temperature encourages all the special flavour smells into the air for you to smell. When it's cooler, red wine is like a cold muscle -- all tight and restrained. The more the smells are released, the more of an experience you can get from the wine. These go up the nose, into the smelling bulb at the back of your nose which then transmits them to the brain telling it things about what you're smelling.
When red wine is cold the acidic and tannic flavours come out more, while all the fruit flavours kinda get hidden. As tannins and acid are characteristic of most red wines, it's best you serve it at a temperature that encourages a balance between the amount of fruit you can taste with the amount of tannins and acid you have to deal with.
Now you know why red wine should be served at room temperature, the problem here is that using room temperature as a guide is all well and good if every room in the world hung around the same temperature. But they do not. Serving red wine in a room on the equator may be a sniff warmer than if you were in a wood cabin in Alaska. Bring it home and you'll find extreme differences here as well.
So, to get a red wine to its ideal serving temperature, you may in fact need to lay it in the fridge for a while. More tannic reds like cabernet sauvignon and shiraz need to be served a little warmer (15-18 degrees) than softer, lighter red wines such as pinot noir and merlot which should be served more for refreshment (10-12 degrees). Also, as wine will usually warm up slightly in your hand, you should serve it at the lower end of this temperature guide.
HOW LONG CAN YOU KEEP LEFTOVER WINE?
This is about the changes that occur over time and start to affect the flavour of the wine, as opposed to when the Wine Storage Police will thunder into your kitchen and charge you with drinking stale wine.
The reason there is a limit on how long you can keep open wine has to do with oxygen. With open wine, oxygen is both friend and foe. Immediately prior to, or soon before drinking, encouraging the wine to come in contact with oxygen is welcomed. This is called aeration and happens in many forms -- swirling the glass before tasting, burbling the wine around in the mouth and pouring the contents of a bottle into a decanter. All of these techniques encourage the things that give a wine its smells (and as far as the brain is concerned, much of its flavour).
This is all well and good for a wine that's about to have your laughing gear wrapped around it. But leave the wine exposed to the oxygen for any length of time and what was once aeration, soon becomes oxidation and damn it, your wine is oxidised. The fruit tastes disappear, it'll start to taste stale and eventually, will turn to vinegar. It's this excessive exposure to oxygen that limits how long you can keep a wine.
Here're some fairly general rules to use as a guide and save your guests from having to drink vinegar.
This year the most creative summer cocktails are ripe for the picking, just like your favorite summer fruit. You can make a delicious statement by choosing juicy signature cocktails that incorporate coveted, seasonal ingredients. Not only will the fresh fruits enhance the taste of your drink and help support your local farmers’ markets, but they will even provide added vitamins and minerals to your recommended daily intake. Studies prove that ethanol, the type of alcohol found in vodka, can enhance antioxidants and prolong the freshness and taste of your favorite fruit.
Whether entertaining at home or enjoying a rooftop happy hour with friends get ready to puree, muddle and garnish your way to creating this summer’s most flavorful and creative cocktails. Take cues from these hot spots, and you'’re guaranteed to enjoy the fruits of your labor all summer long. Let's finish the summer with Chicago.
Combine all ingredients over ice. Shake and strain into a tulip wine glass. Sink 3 raspberries for a last-sip treat. Garnish with 1 fresh raspberry.
Peaking during the summer months, Chicago is the most northerly zone for raspberry growing. Choose bright colored plump berries to avoid tartness.
Whenever a bartender or party host/ess asks "Would you like your cocktail rimmed?" The usual answer is, "Yes! Of course!" And why not? By rimming the glass with sugar, salt or candy (depending on the drink of choice) you are adding another flavor, something to enhance your beverage. Right? Maybe not. Here's the thing - when rimming a drink you have to ask yourself, "Do I want that stuff all over my lips?"
For example, last weekend when out with a group of friends I ordered a choclatini (a grown ups chocolate milk only with vodka instead of vitamin D) garnished with a nice ring of cocoa powder. While the drink was quite yummy and buzz inducing, much to my friends' amusement I was left with two lines of cocoa residue on my cheeks, making me look like I was grinning (quite literally) ear to ear. So my advice to all of you rim job fans out there is to wipe off an inch or so, so you can sip without having to go through a handful of cocktail napkins. Or you should only drink with friends who will tell you when you have something on your face instead of waiting until you go to the bathroom and find it for yourself.
Despite my joker-esque incident, I am a fan of rimming cocktails with a little extra something. In fact, there are several drinks I simply will not order if the bartender isn't dipping the glass into something first. Here are a few drinks that are rarely served bare and some tips on when (and when not) to rim them.
The Margarita - the classic choice for a good rim job, a margarita without a ring of salt just doesn't feel like a margarita. When you should opt for a naked glass: If there is high-end tequila being used (if the bottle says Anejo, don't rim-o) or if you're having it with a meal other than chips and salsa.
Mojito - Since there is already pure sugar cane within the drink itself, I am torn on whether or not this is a good rim choice. If you're a real sweet tooth I can see going down this route, but the mojito is a sugary lady already, so dentists beware. Naked glass: In my opinion, the mint garnish is enough.
Lemondrop - a personal favorite, the lemondrop (citrus vodka, sometimes triple sec and lemon juice) absolutely deserves a sugar seal. The sour lemon and the sweet sugar accent one another perfectly and make for one hell of a combo. Naked glass: Never!
Anything chocolate or vanilla based - this covers your chocolate espresso, vanilla/chocolate martinis and coffee drinks. A dessert drink, the rim is the cherry on top. Naked glass: See above.
So, rim with caution and don't assume the decorative treat is going to make your drink taste better, in some cases it will make it too much of a good thing. Want to try rimming at home? Be sure to use the right moistening device (the innuendos are just too easy). For a salty rim use a lime or a lemon wedge, for the sweeter stuff use a fruit infused liqueur.
Laura Davies: alcohol drinking, word smithing, open bar emptying gal has been drinking legally for a year and nine months, but has been sneaking tastes since she was thirteen (sorry mom). A former cocktail waitress/bartender/winery employee/college student Laura knows a thing or two about booze and loves to share that information with anyone who will listen.
When she's not bar hopping around New York City or ordering another bloody mary at brunch, Laura spends her time writing for various entertainment publications and begging friends to travel with her.
Laura loves: extra dirty greygoose
pinot noir, wheat beer and champagne.
Our latest Rober Plotkin article talks about some of the latest hot liquids, teas. Robert is the founder of BarMedia.com
For the past 17 years, Robert Plotkin, has been working to provide beverage operators with the right career tools they need to attain success. He has created the best management systems, tools, software and books available in the hospitality industry. His nationally acclaimed products are in the offices and behind the bars of the most successful hotels, nightclubs, restaurants and hot spots worldwide.
We should all have futures as bright as the one ahead of tea. George Jage, president and founder of the World Tea Expo cites an industry estimate that sales of tea are expected to nearly double in the United States by the year 2010.
Geoff Alexander knows all to well how popular premium tea is becoming. He is the managing partner of Vong's Thai Kitchen in Chicago, a restaurant in the Lettuce Entertain You portfolio and brainchild of internationally acclaimed chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten. "Here in Chicago we're seeing tea shops opening at a rate that would impress even Starbuck's," says Alexander. "While the concept of our restaurant naturally makes people consider drinking premium teas, demand over the past year has exceeded all of our expectations."
Vong's Thai Kitchen may well be any tea enthusiasts dream come true. During January, the popular eatery held a wildly successful promotion celebrating the many dimensions of tea. The month-long festivities offer a graduate level perspective on how to creatively market tea.
Every Tuesday night during the month, Alexander set-up a table near the front of the restaurant on which he laid out an array of bowls containing ingredients used in blending tea, botanicals such as dragonwell, dried mangos, coconut and apples, various varieties of flowers, and loose green, red and black teas. Guests interested in creating their own blends of teas specifically geared to their individual tastes could do so. A member of the restaurant's staff would work with the guest lending guidance and offering advice. Once the blend was created the products were placed in a silky mesh bag and served tableside.
According to Alexander his guests found the presentation fascinating. "It's intriguing to look at the various ingredients used in premium blends of tea. The botanicals themselves are beautiful and highly aromatic. If you examine coffee beans, for example, they're oily and largely similar in appearance. Not so with the tea. The ingredients reinforce the notion that drinking is a natural, holistic and essentially healthy thing to do."
Alexander and staff also thought that it would be fitting to devise several cocktails that featured tea as ingredients. Both were extremely well received. The Chamomile Mojito ($4.95) is prepared and served in a similar manner as the conventional recipe with the notable additions of lemongrass syrup and 1 1/4 ounces of Chamomile Citron Tea. The Cosmo-Tea-ni ($5.95) is a satiny blend of Chambord, Smirnoff Citrus Vodka, a splash of cranberry juice, and Berries and Blossoms Tea.
Every Saturday afternoon high tea is held at Vong's Thai Kitchen. It's an elegant, well-attended affair that celebrates both tradition and the delights of tea. Guests are tempted with sumptuous Thai finger foods and a selection of exotic blends of tea from which to choose. To answer any questions guests may have about a certain tea, the staff will bring out test tube samples with the contents of the blend so they can experience first hand the feel and aroma of the botanicals. The weekly event is moderately priced at either $13 or $15 per person.
Alexander and company regularly promote an assortment of bubble teas. These refreshing, attention-grabbing concoctions are made with iced tea, fresh fruit and either green or black tapioca balls. Popular flavors include antaloupe, blueberry and watermelon.
If Geoff Alexander's perpetual smile and the demand for tables at Vong's Thai Kitchen are any indication, tapping into the growing popularity of tea is simply good business.
Proven Strategies for the On-Premise Operator
This may be the best resource guide ever written for controlling, managing and operating a beverage operation profitably.
Covering virtually every aspect of a beverage operation, Robert Plotkin has left no stone unturned. From analyzing bartender and server productivity to explaining how to use pour cost formulas to increase profits, it is a guide that anyone can use to increase their profits, reduce their costs and understand how to do it in a step-by-step format.
Fill glass with ice and pour in the Plymouth Gin. Add the Creme de Cassis and top with apple juice. Stir and add garnish of sliced apples and a blackberry.
It's packaged in a small black bottle with an over-sized wrap-around label of mainly text with information that tells of its humble beginnings and it's many uses in food and cooking. As important as that information is, no one really seems to care for the literary fluff on the labeling. Rather they are more interested in what's inside.
The product is called Angostura Bitters and although the word "bitters" appear in the name, the contents therein is anything but.
For years Angostura bitters has been synonymous with enhancing cocktail mixes and other non-alcoholic drinks. A few dashes of the bitters in drinks at any bar has proven to have customers hooked on the taste from what can only be described as "magic in a little bottle". They all love the trigger of sudden bursts of vibrant flavors that can be experienced with every sip.
Manufactured in the Caribbean island of Trinidad and Tobago, depending on who you ask, most people will tell of its versatility and the many uses of this unique product which is also a welcome addition to any food that is prepared.
For instance the older folks among us will suggest that it only take two dashes of bitters in water in order to alleviate both indigestion and flatulence. Cooks too are singing praises for Angostura bitters as it has helped to make their fruit salads, ice cream, meat marinades and soups taste a whole lot better.
Even in foods that are high in citrus ingredients, Angostura Bitters can actually reduce its acidity levels. It makes meals easier for the acid-sensitive person to consume.
But food and drink aside, there are also quite a few people who have admitted to using the bitters as a mosquito repellent and have done so quite successfully.
By now it's quite safe to assume after reading the aforementioned uses for Angostura Bitters that it may contain an adaptable ingredient. Pity no one is telling though as the main ingredient for Angostura Bitters has been kept top secret for years. Only four people were privy to the secret formula, the owner and his three sons. And even years after when the original formula drawings began to fade somewhat; it was redone and transferred to another paper with permanent ink behind locked doors.
The formula is so guarded that parts of it are sealed in vaults in both New York and Trinidad and maybe that's the way its creator German doctor Johann Gottlieb Benjamin Siegert would have liked it.
Angostura bitters was first known as Amargo Aromatico when Siegert who at the time was a Surgeon General in the Venezuelan army first developed it. Siegert, a known scientist, was experimenting with the formula that he had hoped would alleviate his health problems and that of his family.
Joining the Venezuelan military and observing the eating patterns and poor health of his unit, Siegert was even more determined to ready his elixir to administer to the military men.
After tweaking the formula, Siegert came up with this clever blend of tropical herbs and spices along with its secret ingredient which not only helped the soldiers with their indigestion and gas problems but it also restored their appetites as well.
Soon, the news about how great a product the bitters was had spread not only through the land, but also to other military persons who visited the island from other countries. The bitters helped their seasickness and some of these sailors would purchase the bitters from Siegert and take it back to their country for use by their families.
As the product grew in popularity, Siegert changed the name of the product to Angostura Bitters, after Angostura the Venezuelan town.
Some wondered if the product was named Angostura speculating that the angostura tree was probably the secret ingredient. But research has proven that this has been a misconception for years.
The first international export of Angostura Bitters was in the year 1830 to countries England and Trinidad. Some twenty years later, when the popularity of the product had increased at a rapid pace, Siegert resigned from the military so that he could devote more time to manufacturing the product.
Together with his son Carlos, they formed the company Dr. J.G.B. Sieger t& Hijo, a partnership where Carlos functioned as the person responsible for the company's advertising.
It is said that Carlos possessed a certain suave and debonair demeanor and was always nattily clad qualities that no doubt helped him to better advertise their product during displays in London, Paris and Vienna. When Dr. Siegert died in 1870, he left his legacy in the capable hands of his sons Alfredo and Carlos. Carlos continued advertising the product in parts of the United States and Australia.
Political unrest in Venezuela forced Carlos and Alfredo out of the country and they set up their business in neighboring country Trinidad, where the business is still headquartered today. Their sibling Luis joined the company once they moved to Trinidad.
Some years later, when both Carlos and Luis had passed away and Alfredo became the sole owner and the only one who possessed the Angostura Bitters secret formula. It was unfortunate to see that after Dr. Siegert had put in so much effort into a product that he believed in, that the money was later squandered by Alfredo who made bad investments.
Things had gotten so bad with the company, which was later named Angostura Bitters (Dr. J.G.B. Siegert and Sons) Limited, that it had to be turned over to creditors.
Many businesses had made bids for its ownership in efforts to rescue the company but they failed miserably. The company eventually made its way back to the Siegert descendants some 40 years later, where it rightly belongs.
Today Angostura Bitters is known and used on a worldwide scale. The product has received the Royal Warrant appointment by the Queen of England, a title that is only awarded to companies with high standards and one that displays a level of excellence.
Asha Brodie has spent an interesting 20 years in print media as an entertainment journalist and columnist. Born and bred in the island of Trinidad and Tobago, she now calls Connecticut her home where she lives with her family. Her lifelong love affair for writing continues...
Red 3-Tier Salt Rimmer GR-RED
Dark 'n Stormy
Pour in ice-filled highball glass and top with Barritts Ginger Beer. Garnish with a lime.
Blend ingredients with ice. Drizzle chocolate syrup in bottom and sides of a parfait glass. Pour blended drink into glass.
The heat of the summer is on and what better way to enjoy a hot afternoon or evening than with a cold and refreshing cocktail to take the edge off the summer heat. Jim Hewes, Washington, D.C. mixologist at the Round Robin Bar at the historical Willard InterContinental has used his 20+ years of mixing experience to concoct these tasty creations, with a little Washington, D.C. flair.
If you can't pay Jim a visit at the Round Robin in Washington try making one of his cocktails at home - you can enjoy one by the pool, at your next barbeque, or just because.
Maker's Green Apple
Shake ingredients over ice. Strain into cocktail glass coated with cherry brandy. Garnish with apple slice and cherry.
Mix all ingredients and serve tall over ice with a dusting of grated nutmeg, a cherry and a splash of sloe gin on top.
Our BarStore, bringing you everything for the club, bar or home!
Blend X-Rated Fusion Liqueur, Tequila, Sweet and Sour and Rose's Lime Juice with ice. Pour into a Martini Glass, top with the 7-Up and garnish with Lime.
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