Recent comments

  • Fruites Douces aux Fines Herbes   3 years 27 weeks ago


    Ah... ok. I've got the Germain Robin apple brandy and Familie Dupont 86 vintage Calvados, which might scare some of those other ingredients into submission ;) I wonder if I can convince my likker store to carry the Combier stuff?

  • Fruites Douces aux Fines Herbes   3 years 27 weeks ago

    Truth to tell, I used "Originel" brand calvados that I bought today from Bauer on Newbury St because the price was right. It is rather fruit-forward and a more complex (and pricier) calvados might be more pleasing. I bought the Dolin from Bauer today as well, and I made this cocktail with the Dolin in mind. I wouldn't use Noilly Prat for this. Using Lillet blanc would make the drink fruitier and perhaps a bit flaccid; I'd definitely recommend using Cocci Americano as an alternative. The balance to me comes more through the herbal mix than from any bitter aspect, though I might try this sometime with cranberry or Burlesque bitters for fun.

  • Fruites Douces aux Fines Herbes   3 years 27 weeks ago

    Thanks Dan! Seriously, when I first sampled the Combier Rouge at Cirace in the North End it struck me with its freshness along with good cherry umami. I was impressed.

  • Fruites Douces aux Fines Herbes   3 years 27 weeks ago


    This looks interesting -- which Calvados do you recommend, and does it achieve balance through the bitterness of the Vermouth?

  • Fruites Douces aux Fines Herbes   3 years 27 weeks ago

    This sounds lovely. Finger Lakes Distilling Cherry Liqueur is also less complex / fresher than Cherry Heering, and less sweet too. Alas, I think it is only available in New York State at this point. I'm looking forward to trying this. It seems like a fruity Manhattan, in an circuitous sort of way. (I took the liberty of adding Combier Rouge as a bona fide ingredient.)

  • Barbary Lights   3 years 27 weeks ago

    Tasted before and after adding kirschwasser - really does make a difference - rounds out the edges of the drink. Added a dash of angostura too.

  • Growing Old Cocktail   3 years 27 weeks ago

    Drinking this now. Dan, you're not going to like it, I'm afraid. The Herbsaint rinse dominates the nose, but once you're past that, it smells chocolatey... the way a Tootsie Roll smells chocolatey. It's firmly sweet up front with an artificial chocolate flavor (how do you get artificial chocolate out of Cynar + Rye?), and starts to get interesting as the tobacco/bitter flavors of the Cynar take over the finish. 

    I think the easy way out might be 3/4 oz of lemon juice. I think something more interesting might be swap the rinse to creme de cassis to try and fix the acidity without acid. 

  • Union Club   3 years 27 weeks ago

    Thank you for pointing this out. I've corrected the recipe and updated the attribution.

  • Union Club   3 years 27 weeks ago

    I think this was originally a recipe from Jamie Boudreau in Seattle.

  • Arrack Attack   3 years 27 weeks ago

    Mixology Monday is a global cocktail party. No it's a cocktail nerd smackdown. Or a collaborative mega blog, perhaps. For April 2011, Spirited Remix hosted MxMo LVI with the theme "Your best." No pressure. Gulp. I'm to select my finest cocktail — one that I've refined and perfected. That I've made a zillion times. Gulp. Gulp.

    I've refined the Arrack Attack over countless iterations, at least if you can't count beyond your thumbs. I've made this drink from for some time now, though. It elicits a warm response from the right audience. It's sweet and sour and bitter and savory and even a tiny touch salty all at once. A enthusiast's cocktail, I'd say.

    Batavia Arrack von Oosten is not the most accessible member of the rum clan. It's the left-of-center slightly crazy uncle with the funky flavor you can't quite place. And Cynar, oh Cynar, that bittersweet amaro made from artichokes and magic. Together they work. Yes, there's a lot going on. Sip thoughtfully and you can tease apart the layers.

    I selected this cocktail for a quarterly foodies group to which I belong. The particular event was covered by the Boston Globe, and there was a photo of me busily shaking up batches of Arrack Attacks. Our hosts prepared a rijsttafel. The Indonesian/Dutch connection of the Arrack was too good to pass up. I hope you enjoy it.

  • Grenadine   3 years 27 weeks ago

    A very simple grenadine may be made with ingredients on hand (once you buy the pomegranate juice). Keeps well refrigerated.

    2 c Pomegranate juice
    1c Sugar
    1/2 oz Vanilla extract
    2t Crème de Violette
    20 dr red food coloring

    Shake to dissolve. I find the flavor of orange flower water soapy/perfumy, so I substitute Crème de Violette. The red food coloring is optional, but give is a potent red color.

  • Haut-Medoc   3 years 28 weeks ago

    I tend to think about cocktail development in terms of flavor or aroma accords. In this cocktail, I was thinking about the bitters first - they're fruity, with a chile spicyness and typical bitter notes. That led me to Cassis, which is fruity + a woody bitterness, which led me to Rye, which has a green, woody bitterness as well. Maurin Quina is cherry + almond + some interesting bitter notes, and the rinse of Creme de Cacao is meant to mimic the 20th Century cocktail, as well as to tie in and harmonize the other flavors, all of which go well with chocolate. This is still in the theoretical phase, as Maurin Quina is a special order only thing where I live ;) 

    But to answer your question... I think that other cherry liqueurs might be a good substitition, as long as they have a bitterness to them. You might also want more lemon juice in the cocktail to make up for the loss of acidity in the cherry liqueurs.

  • Haut-Medoc   3 years 28 weeks ago

    This is really intriguing. I've never seen the Maurin Quina before and will definitely look for it. I'm wondering what would happen if Cherry Heering or Combier Rouge were substituted for the cassis here.

  • Smoked Anise   3 years 29 weeks ago

    Thanks, Dan, for doing that, and thanks to H. Joseph Ehrmann.

  • Fumidus   3 years 29 weeks ago

    Winner of the 2011 Anvil Bar and Refuge "Bar Regulars Competition"

  • Smoked Anise   3 years 29 weeks ago

    H. Joseph Ehrmann kindly wrote back with the original recipe, notes, and an aritcle from November 30, 2008 in the New York Times where it was featured. I have updated the recipe's name, history, date, and reference to reflect these source references.

  • Smoked Anise   3 years 29 weeks ago

    Sounds similar to the Dreamy Dorini Smoking Martini created by Audrey Saunders that I saw mentioned on eGullet:

  • Smoked Anise   3 years 29 weeks ago

    I have sought confirmation for Elixir about the name, ingredients, history, and attribution for this cocktail. This is obviously not a relative of a true Martini and perhaps has a better name.

  • The Black Pearl   3 years 30 weeks ago

    I received a message from Julie Reiner. "... I did not create the Black Pearl. It was created by my former head bartender at Lani Kai. His name is Joseph Swifka."

  • Sazerac   3 years 30 weeks ago

    Angostura is all baking spices - heavy clove and cinnamon and allspice. Peychaud's isn't as bitter, and it gives the Sazerac a pretty reddish pink color. It also emphasizes the anise of the absinthe, with a 'tutti-frutti' overtone. My understanding is that some people use a dash of Angostura and 2-3 dashes Peychaud's, but both should be staples in any home bar.

  • Sazerac   3 years 30 weeks ago

    ... in my house. And we make it with Rye and Lucid Absinthe, which I also don't bother to drain out, just ad a small splash to the glass, twirl and leave a little puddle in the bottom. I dont have Peychauds though, so use Angostura and recently Underberg (which seems a bit sweeter). Any comments on how Peychauds makes it different?

  • The Fiery Dog   3 years 31 weeks ago

    Ha ha! "Please don't put any White Dog in a cocktail glass."

  • The Road to Tipperary:   3 years 31 weeks ago

    Clarified approximate volume of berries and stout, and suggested possible mix of berries. Alas, source reference is vague.

  • Toronto   3 years 32 weeks ago

    Instead of Fernet Branca I would suggest Luxardo Fernet, which has a commendable peppery character without the soapy aftertaste Branca has. A Toronto made with such has a much more pleasant impact IMHO.

  • East India Trading Company   3 years 32 weeks ago

    Subbed El Dorado 5 & Flor de Cana 7 for the Appleton, and Trevor Jones 'Jonesy' Tawny "Port" for the Sherry. It's alright, sort of flip-like, but without the richness. I wanted nutmeg, but I want nutmeg with all flips. Meh.