Booze and elderflowers (part 2)

I made a couple more cocktails with my homemade elderflower cordial. First I absolutely had to try Sam Ross’ Sunflower again. It’s a variation of one of my favorite cocktails, the Corpse Reviver No. 2, with elderflower replacing Lillet. I used pastis but use absinthe if you have it. I keep it in a little perfume mister which is great for drinks like this one that just call for a rinse.

The cocktail is crisp and light, but also full of flavor from the interplay of the elderflower with the botanicals of the pastis and the orange of the Cointreau. Really wonderful.

Sunflower: gin, lemon, cointreau, homemade elderflower cordial, pastis
Continue reading

You only live twice

mxmologo

This month for MxMo LXXV, Fred Yarm from cocktail virgin slut selected the theme Flip Flop!
The mission was summarized as follows:

Find a recipe, either new or old, and switch around at least two of the ingredients to sister or cousin ingredients but holding the proportions and some of the ingredients the same. The new recipe should be recognizable as a morph of the old one when viewed side by side.

I knew right away that I wanted to use Harry Craddock’s Corpse Reviver No. 2 as my inspiration. Since it’s an equal-parts cocktail (with a rinse), I figured that it would be easy to experiment. In the past I had tried making subtle changes to ingredients in the CR2, evaluating the influence of using Cocchi Americano vs. Lillet or Cointreau vs. Pierre Ferrand dry curaçao, but I had never tried switching ingredients.

My first thought was to use a white rum instead of gin, but then I remembered the excellent Paddington from PDT. Although altering the original ratios, it is clearly based on the CR2 and cleverly switches Cointreau for a spoonful of orange marmalade. The Savoy Cocktail book also has the Culross which is rum based and uses apricot liqueur instead of Cointreau.

I considered using tequila for my CR2 variation, but soon realized that someone at Rickhouse already had the same brilliant idea (and with the original ratios too!) resulting in the Corpse Reviver No. 5 with tequila blanco, Cocchi Americano (instead of Lillet), pineapple gum syrup (instead of Cointreau), lemon juice and absinthe.

So tequila and rum were out. Moving on to dark spirits; cognac had been covered in the Hurly Burly (the other switch being Montenegro for the Cointreau), itself a riff on another Savoy cocktail the Hoop La! (aka Frank Sullivan cocktail) which is identical to the CR2 with cognac and no absinthe rinse. I finally settled on rye…

With rye as the base spirit, I decided to switch the Lillet for Bonal gentiane quina. Like Lillet, Bonal is a quinquina (a fortified aromatized aperitif wine with cinchona bark), although the quinine is much more pronounced compared to Lillet. Bonal being close to a vermouth, pairing it with rye made sense. For the other ingredients kept the lemon juice, I used dry curaçao instead of Cointreau and kept the rinse (I used pastis).

So here are the original and the twist side by side.

CR2 variation

Continue reading

Give me a wink and I’ll give you what I think you’re after

I just received my copy of Tony Conigliaro’s Cocktail Lab, the American edition of Drinks that just came out a few days ago. Tony Conigliaro’s bars, 69 Colebrooke Row in London and le Coq in Paris, are known for their avant-garde approach to cocktails, many of them developed in a laboratory setting. The book contains a wide array of drinks, from twists on classics to more complex recipes, some involving homemade distillates requiring laboratory equipment. Just flipping through the book, it was interesting to see that his sources of inspiration for new drinks even included perfumes. It is the kind of book that is not just a collection of recipes but also a stepping stone for new creations. It is great that he is sharing his creative process with us.

The Wink: gin, Cointreau, simple syrup, Peychaud's bitters, pastis, orange peel
Continue reading