Friday, April 21, 2017

Original Cocktail: the Dimmitazza

The main ingredient in this fruity, refreshing, and extremely brunch-appropriate cocktail is a spirit called Dimmi Liquore di Milano. Floral with a big hit of stonefruit, Dimmi is a blend of neutral grain spirit (basically a wheat vodka) and Nebbiolo grappa. It's infused with a variety of botanicals including wormwood, vanilla and rhubarb. At 35% this is a versatile spirit to play around with in low alcohol cocktails, but it's also pleasant served chilled on its own. 


1.5 oz Dimmi Liquore di Milano
.5 oz hibiscus liqueur (I use Fruitlab) 1.5 oz fresh grapefruit juice

1.5-2 oz Cava or Prosecco
Shake everything but the sparkling wine and strain into a rocks glass. Top with Cava/Prosecco, about 1.5oz or so. Garnish with a cherry.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Original Cocktail: The Apparition

Annnnd, I'm back. Election Depression Hibernation is officially over.

Here's an old Revival menu cocktail that had a good run. It's a snappy little drink that doesn't care what season it is, or what the weather is like.  Yea, that's right. It's pink. You can deal with it, pinkies up!

- the Apparition-

1.5 oz Aquavit (we used Krogstad)
.5 oz fresh lemon
.5 oz off dry Riesling *
.5 oz Luxardo maraschino
2 dashes Peychauds bitters

Shake with ice, double strain into coupe. Garnish with a twist of lemon.

*Most of us just don't have a bottle of Riesling open in the fridge, and you'll get more than acceptable results using Lillet or Cocchi Americano.  

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Modern Riff: The Perfect Turkey

This classic little riff on the perfect Manhattan is one of my favorite holiday inspired cocktails, and I used to run it on the Revival Bar + Kitchen menu during the week of Thanksgiving. It’s seasonal, warms you right up, and most importantly, gets you hella drunk when your family is visiting.

-The Perfect Turkey-

adapted from, reposted from Alpha Cook

2 oz Wild Turkey 101 rye or bourbon

.5 oz  sweet vermouth
.5 oz dry vermouth
3 dashes maple or pumpkin bitters

Stir all ingredients in a mixing glass filled with ice for 20-30 seconds, or until you’re happy with the temperature and dilution. Strain into a chilled cocktail vessel of your choice. Garnish with an orange twist.

If you’re feeling fancy...

For a sweeter version you can stick with the Epicurious-recommended garnish of a spiced sugar rim. I like to add a little dried orange peel into the mix. It’s fairly simple to prepare and keeps well up to about a year after you’ve made it in an airtight container.

orange peels from one medium orange, dehydrated

¼ cup sugar
¼ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
⅛ tsp freshly grated cinnamon
pinch of allspice

In a small food processor or spice mill, zap until fully integrated and the orange pieces are as small as you like.  Then pour onto a saucer. Use a piece of orange to wet the rim of the cocktail glass, then dip the glass into the sugar mixture.

I chose to keep my peels on the chunky side for texture, but most like them as a finer powder.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Original Cocktail: The Red Handed

This is a cocktail that I originally created specifically with St. George Spirit's Breaking & Entering Bourbon, and the Red Handed made its debut on my very first full menu at Revival Bar + Kitchen. Alas, that brown nectar is no longer available, but this Manhattan variation will nonetheless work well with your favorite bourbon or rye whiskey.

-Red Handed-

2 oz bourbon
1 oz Barolo Chinato
1-2 dashes Peychaud's bitters 
1 dash Angostura (or other aromatic) bitters

Stir all ingredients with ice, strain into a stemmed, chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.

Barolo Chinato

Barolo Chinato is a lovely thing to have in your cocktail arsenal. Like vermouth, this fortified wine is seasoned with a variety of herbs and spices, the most notable being quinine. Yes, the same quinine used in tonic water. Quinine in Italy is called china, so when you see Chinato or China while perusing your liquor store's selection, you know to expect a bitter component.

Another thing that makes Barolo Chinato so special is the region where it's made. Barolo Chinato must be made by wine produced in the Piedmont region of Italy where Nebbiolo is grown, the grape that's used to produce Barolo and Barberesco.

You can also enjoy this Chinato on its own, as either an aperitif or a digestiv. Before dinner, serve on ice with an orange peel, or even add a splash of soda water. After, serve it neat as you would a port.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Original Cocktail: Decorative Gourd Season Old Fashioned

Let's be clear, there is no shame in being a fan of the pumpkin; it is, after all, Decorative Gourd Season. The season formerly known as Fall. There will be people who don't share your views, who will scoff at pumpkin spiced delicacies, while no doubt stashing away Pumpkin Joe-Joes in the shopping cart under whatever kale item is large enough to hide it. Don't let them keep you from your happiness. Haters gonna hate.

You should know however, that the Pumpkin "spirit" used below is not sweet. It is not syrupy or pie flavored, or artificial. This is distilled pumpkin lager brewed by a neighboring brewery (Milwaukee’s Lakefront Brewery) of the Great Lakes Distillery, aka whiskey. Overall it's subtle and dry, with the spice arriving on the finish. It's the booze you'll want to use to spike just about everything leading up to ye olde Turkey Day.

-Decorative Gourd Season Old Fashioned-

2 oz Great Lakes Pumpkin Spirit
scant .25 oz Bittermilk Gingerbread*
2-3 dashes aromatic bitters**
1 lemon peel, 1 orange peel

In an old fashioned glass (aka double rocks or tumbler) add the citrus peel, bitters and syrup. With a muddler, gently press the peels to extract the oils. Add the pumpkin spirit and ice, then stir until chilled. 

This is a good time to use that giant ice cub tray you bought months ago and forgot about.

*If you don't have this particular syrup, a rich gomme syrup or a spiced simple syrup is perfectly acceptable.

**For the bitters, I chose 5x5 Barrel Aged Vanilla, but any aromatic variety will work. If using Angostura bitters, go light.