Saturday, December 06, 2008

Repeal Day

I had a little party at my place for repeal day. I put together a little cocktail menu and made the following cocktails; the aviation, the bijou, the blood and sand, the daiquiri, the fourth degree, the old fashioned, and the sidecar. Fire in the fireplace, snacks, and friends. Thanks to all those who made it by for a cocktail.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Pink Lemons

Just got back from New Seasons, where I ran across pink lemons. I haven't cut into them yet, but I'm thinking up ways to use them tonight (read cocktails). I couldn't find much info on these little beauties online, but Four Winds Growers sells trees. Here's their page on this citrus.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Coffees of the present and recent past

Roasted and ground by Stumptown (My grinder bit the dust. Any suggestions for a new one?).

Made with my trusty french press.

Consumed with Noris or Strauss half and half.

Panama Duncan Estate Organic x 3
El Salvador Kilimanjaro Organic
Honduras Cielito Lindo

Makes the morning that much better.

My bar...

It's getting there...

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


This is a generic photo of a sidecar taken from Esquire's drink page. Tonight, we made meyer lemon sidecars.

1 1/2 oz Germain-Robin Brandy
3/4 oz Cointreau
3/4 oz meyer lemon juice

Shake with ice and serve up. We decided against the sugared rim.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

New drink, worthy of re-making...

1 oz Hangar One Kaffir Lime Vodka
.5 oz G.E. Massenez Creme de Gingembre
1 oz lime juice
.5 oz simple syrup

Shake and serve up.


Today's baking project...

Sunday, September 28, 2008


OK, it's been a while. Seems like lists are a good way to catch everybody up...

Coffees I've bought lately from Stumptown:
  • Bolivia San Ignacio (x2)
  • Costa Rica El Quemado
  • Guatemala Finca el Injerto Reserva
  • Kenya AA Nduma
  • Nicaragua Los Delirios El Eden Lot
  • Panama Carmen Estate
  • Panama Duncan Estate (x4)
  • Panama Esmeralda Especial
Liquors I've purchased recently:
  • Loft Lavender Cello (OR)
  • Loft Lemongrass Cello (OR)
  • Farigoule Thyme Liqueur (FR)
  • Rhum Clement VSOP (Martinique)
  • Hangar One Kaffir Lime Vodka (CA)
Liquors I've infused recently, and a rating (1 lowest to 5 highest) of quality
  • Mt Adams Hucklberry Vodka - 3
  • Lemon Verbena Vodka - 2
  • Thyme Vodka - 4
  • Rose Petal Vodka - 2
Liquors I'm on the hunt for
  • Apia Honey Vodka (OR)
  • Anchor Genevieve Gin (CA)
Music downloaded (yes legally) since August:
  • Brightblack Morning Light - Motion t0 Rejoin
  • Dept. of Eagles - In Ear Park
  • Calexico - Travelall
  • Calexico - Toolbox
  • Calexico - '98-'99 Roadmap
  • Damon and Naomi - More Sad Hits
  • Yo La Tengo - They Shoot, We Score
  • Various Artists - Nigeria Special: Modern Highlife, Afro-sounds & Nigerian Blues 1970-1976
  • Holly Golightly - Up the Empire
  • Holly Golightly - Painted on
  • Camera Obscura - Let's Get Out of This Country
  • Okkervil River - The Stand Ins
  • Calexico - Carried to Dust
  • Jens Lekmand - When I Said I Wanted to Be Your Dog
  • Jarvis Cocker - Jarvis
  • Walkmen - Daytrotter Session
Magazines whose subscriptions have or are about to lapse (that I want to resubscribe to)
  • Art of Eating
  • Meatpaper
  • Gastronomica
  • Imbibe
Great bottles of wine I've had recently
  • 1978 Dm Romanee-Conti Romanee-Conti (getting a little tired)
  • 1977 Dujac Clos St Denis (simply stunning)
  • 2007 Rafeal Palacios As Sortes
  • 2004 Domaine Cheze St Joseph Cuvee Caroline
I suppose that is enough for now. Consider yourself caught up.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

TB1 and TB2

BC is out of town, and I've been given the task of perfecting a Thai Basil cocktail while she is gone. A quick Google search brought up a few ideas, the most prominent being Thai Basil syrup, lemon juice, and a base liquor. I used the syrup recipe from found here, but I used 1 cup water, 1 cup sugar, and 1 cup loosely packed thai basil leaves.

Additionally, I liked the idea of thai basil with saffron, so I used the two saffron infused/flavored base spirits I had...

2 oz SubRosa saffron vodka
1 oz lemon juice
1 oz thai basil syrup
Shake with ice and strain, serve up

2 oz Cadenhead's Old Raj gin
1 oz lemon juice
1 oz thai basil syrup
Shake with ice and strain, serve up

The TB1 was the winner of the two, but both were a bit too sweet. I like my drinks with a little more acid. When making drinks at home, I prefer a ratio of 3 pts spirit, 2 pts sour, and 1 pt sweet. My concern in using that ratio here is that with only 1 pt in 6, the thai basil flavor will be lost.

I think that muddling the thai basil will be the focus of the next round of drinks.

To be continued...

Image from Wikipedia

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Flor de Mayo

I was in Cali two weekends ago, and picked up a few bottles of liquor to bring home with me. One of those was a bottle of Qi White Tea Liqueur from (I believe) St. George Spirits (I also grabbed a bottle of the Black Tea Liqueur, but that's for another post).

So, Tuesday evening rolls around. Another day of work is over. What better way to celebrate than a cocktail?

I'm between getting the mail at the post office and heading to Lovely Hula Hands with BC and DJ. Looking over the liquor shelf, it occurs to me that I haven't made a drink with the Qi liqueurs yet. A quick check of the Qi web site provides a number of ideas. Having recently tackled the old school Daiquiri, their Flor de Mayo looks like it might be up my alley. Here's the breakdown:
  • 2 oz dark rum (they suggest Pampero Anniversario, which I happen to have on the shelf)
  • 1 oz Qi White Liqueur
  • 1 oz lime juice
  • .5 tbsp simple syrup (they suggest 1 tsp)
  • Combine, shake, strain, drink
The drink itself is pretty good. Unfortunately, the orange flavor in the Qi really outshines white tea.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Rangpur Gimlet

[Ed. note - I wrote this weeks ago, just never posted...] This past Saturday was the first PSU farmer's market of the season. C, D, B, and I made plans weeks ago to attend the market together, and then make a "First Market" dinner. Weather was dim and rainy, but that wasn't going to hold us back.

My contribution was a plate of baby carrots and French breakfast radishes with coarse French grey salt and hand churned butter (unfortunately, Noris dairy wasn't at the market so I settled on Strauss cream). Pleasant and simply, ultimately fresh and tasty.

I also offered to handle the cocktails for dinner. I bought a number of ingredients at the markets, but the most interested were Rangpur limes (also called lemanderins). I bought 6 of them, which wasn't quite enough for 4 small cocktails.

I spent part of the afternoon making syrups. For this drink, I made a simple syrup with Temple de l'Aube tea (a green tea with bergamot and lemon) and unrefined organic cane sugar.
  • 1 c water
  • 1 c unrefined organic cane sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Temple de l'Aube green tea
  • Bring water to a near boil, steep tea for a few minutes, strain, add sugar, dissolve sugar, pass through cheesecloth, cool.
I also made rhubarb syrup and ginger/black pepper syrup, but those are for another story.

Anyway, I dragged all kinds of bar tools to CC's place, and prepped this cocktail, which I'm calling the Rangpur gimlet (and yes, I know there is no Rose's in this recipe, but I don't care, I prefer fresh juice and a little sugar).
  • 1.5 oz Junipero gin
  • 1 oz rangpur lime juice (although I was a little short)
  • .5 oz Temple de l'Aube simple syrup
  • Shake with ice and serve up on a cocktail glass
  • I didn't add a garnish
And that's it. The flavors were actually more subtle than I had expected. The citrus really shined in the finish, and the tea syrup added a lovely note to the nose.

I'd certainly make these again (and if fact, I probably will next weekend). Oh, and if you want to buy these limes at the market, see the honey and egg folks at the far South end of the market. They'll cost 2 for $1 for the medium size (3 for $1 for the small ones).

Photo courtesy of CC.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

The Lady Panther

Hello peeps.

It's been a while. No good reason. Most likely, no one even checks for updates here anymore. That's OK. It's understandable.

I've gotten into cocktails since my last post. In a big (read unhealthy [?]) way.

One ingredient I've really been digging is St. Germain. Not heard of it? Again, understandable. It's fairly new to our Portland, OR market. It's a liqueur made from the elderflower, a blossom of the Elder tree. If you buy into their story (and I'm not sure I entirely do), the blossoms are hand harvested (during a several day window in spring) in the French Alps and delivered, by bicycle no less, to the distillery.

My belle like St. Germain too. I've mixed it into a drink that she likes. Originally it was an impromptu vodka collins...
sort of via Ben Reed's The Art of the Cocktail
  • 1.75 oz vodka [I've been using Lovejoy from Integrity Spirits]
  • .75 oz lemon juice [because I can't conform to the rules, I use meyer lemons]
  • .5 oz simple syrup
  • club soda
  • a splash of grapefruit juice (texas red)
  • more than a splash of St. Germain.
I've been trying to refine that into an actual recipe, but I can't seem to recreate the magic (although I've enjoyed the experimentation).

Unfortunately, meyer lemon season is nearly over, and the quest for the perfect "Lady Panther" (the name I am giving the as-of-yet unperfected drink) will have to wait until next year.

Congratulations, Lady Panther, you have won this round. But I will be back.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Best Beers of 08 - 2004 Cantillon Iris

I meant to make some notes on this beer when drinking it with my friend DS. Didn't happen. Just let it be know that this beer was pretty damn amazing. Sour, tart, complex. This bottling was finished with a cork, then a cap, in a 375 ml bottle. Totally worth tracking down. I got my bottle at John's Market. Clearly the image above (from the Brewery's site) has a different vintage than the bottle I consumed.