Looks like we’ve got a least a few more days until Spring, so you might as well enjoy them with some great tasting tea!
Interesting article from How Stuff Works on why we can’t just manufacture water… Read it here!
Post by Warren Bobrow
Do you want to know what I’m excited about? Well it’s pretty simple. Tequila. It’s been a long time since I’ve enjoyed the flavor of the earth as exemplified by the Terroir captured by Tequila. Oh I suppose this is my own fault. The good stuff is mostly unavailable in the part of New Jersey where I live. Sure there are all the national brands available. Plus some pseudo-artisan varieties in fancy hand-blown bottles. No, what I’m looking for it the real thing.
I want to taste the earth and the agave root. And I want some now!!!!
Recently I was introduced to a unique and carefully crafted brand of Tequila named Rudo after the dastardly cunning, Lucha Libre wrestler from Mexico.
There is almost a balletic quality to the flavor of the Reposado sitting in front of me right now. I just took a swish into my mouth of the Rudo Reposado. Pin point drops of Mexican honey swirl around my mouth leaving sweet little explosions of vanilla cream pastilles dipped in fire. The finish goes on and on, finally ending in a blazing sunset across your throat and down to your stomach. Rudo is deeply warming and there is magic in every sip. The specific Terroir of the region is very apparent in each sip. There is a dreamy, creamy quality of this spirit. The world becomes soft and the sounds of the day become far away. Be careful with Rudo. He may be a bad guy if you drink too much of his name-sake Tequila. But until you get there- the point of no return so to speak, I recommend this little cocktail that was influenced heavily by my friend Chris Milligan out in Santa Fe, barkeep at Secreto.
He created the Smoked Sage Margarita. I pay homage to his brilliant drink by adding USDA Certified Organic Sage from Art in the Age.
The Liquor named Sage on the herb by the same name- Sage? Of course?
But what about the ice? I’ve long held that Mavea, the German water filtration pitcher is the very best for making the frozen matter that we call ice. I take this highly filtered and purified water and add it to silicone ice cube trays, THEN I zest with a microplane zester two lemons and limes over the top. Freeze as normal.
Finally I added the Bitter End Mexican Mole Bitters, rife with spices, chocolate and dreams of the coyotes running amok in the desert.
Thank you Bill and Laurel for making sure I was safe behind the walls and not out in the desert when the coyotes came running and screaming throughout the night. It was an experience I’ll never forget.
I call this drink the Ghost Ranch Shot in honor of the famous Ghost Ranch where Georgia O’Keefe spent much time. She was a wild woman who would have appreciated this power and fragrance of the desert in every sip.
Ingredients (makes two very mysteriously thirst quenching cocktails):
3 oz. Rudo Reposado Tequila
6 Drops of the brilliantly potent- Bitter End Mexican Mole Bitters
1 oz. Royal Rose Simple Syrup of Lavender and Lemon
2 oz. SAGE (USDA Certified Organic Sage Liquor- 80 Proof!)
1 Sage Leaf (and a match)
.50 Fresh Lemon Juice
.50 Grilled Lime Juice (Char some lime wedges in a cast iron pan until blackened, then juice)
-Turn your Boston Shaker upside down resting on two other shakers (Thanks Chris for enlightening me!)
-Take the piece of Sage in your fingers and light it on fire under the Boston Shaker
-Fill the Shaker with the smoke of the burning Sage leaf
-Crumble the charred Sage leaf directly into the Boston Shaker, still filled with smoke
-Add the Tequila
-Add the Sage Liquor
-Add the Lemon juice
-Add the Grilled Lime juice
-Add the Royal Rose Syrup
-Add 6 drops of the Bitter End Mexican Mole Bitters
-Fill the Boston Shaker 3/4 with ice, cover and shake for 10-15 seconds
-Serve in a rocks glass with a salt rim and one HUGE hand cut- infused Mavea Lemon/Lime zest ice cubes
-Garnish with a chunk of lime
Recipe courtesy of Warren Bobrow
1 bottle Half Moon Gin
2 qts. Freshly Squeezed Grapefruit Juice
1 qt. Pomegranate Juice (Pom works)
2 bottles Berlo Prosecco
10 or so shakes of The Bitter Truth Aromatic Bitters, taste, then add more if necessary.
Orange, lemon and lime rounds
Ice made with your Mavea “Inspired Water” Pitcher infused with chilies (crush some chile peppers of your choice into your filtered water, place in a 1 gallon container, then freeze as usual)
1. Add all liquid ingredients to a punch bowl
2. Add the large block of infused Mavea ice to the punch bowl
3. Garnish with citrus rounds and serve to an appreciative audience
4. Refill with ice, gin and pomegranate and grapefruit juices as necessary
Post by Warren Bobrow
“Forget it, Jake. It’s Chinatown.” This line popped into my brain last night. Of all the movies, I had to dream about Chinatown last night. I think it was something to do with water and hangover cures. Not that I have a hangover, far from. But if you drink like a pro- you should at least try to act like one too. That means if you’re drinking booze, make sure that you drink plenty of water.
Hangover cures are a dime a dozen. The mere thought of eating greasy food when one’s head is swelled and the ground seems as close as the bathroom door. But don’t laugh, a fried egg with bacon and cheese propped on a toasted buttered roll under certain circumstances is bliss. My thoughts with St. Patrick’s Day coming right up is to drink hot tea the morning after a particularly difficult day of the year. I may not consciously ask for a cure, it just comes naturally.
Ginger and curry have certain curative powers in the face of the spins. A bit of gin added to hot tea with ginger and curry? Now we’re talking.
The Far East Cocktail is built on the premise that you’ve had one too many the night prior. And keeping in the vein of the far east, it’s important to understand and appreciate the flavors of this region.
I’ve grown rather fond of a new ginger liqueur named INTENSE. The very name dispels any wonder that this liqueur is weak. It is far from weak. Rolling in at 44 proof, INTENSE is marvelous in a cup of black English style tea, then a framework of gin from Barr Hill in Vermont is added for good measure. I suppose what I like most about this gin is the flavor of raw honey and juniper, added to the distillate for not only flavor, but for the antioxidant purposes. And if you are feeling a bit less than pristine, gin in your tea with ginger is a gorgeous thing indeed.
Of course the potently aromatic Curry Bitters from Bitter End in Santa Fe, New Mexico take this cup of steaming healing to another level entirely. I’m very lucky to have been able to source this product. It’s truly unique and I hope you have a chance to find it. The flavor of cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, ginger, mustard seed, nutmeg and cloves wind their way through my subconscious and my cocktails. Either hot OR cold, they are certainly a wake-up call to the sense of taste and smell.
Barr Hill in Vermont distilled highly expressive liquors packed full of healing goodness. I believe that Barr Hill is one of the finest gins I’ve ever tasted. It’s so unique! As my friend Todd Hardie, the owner of the distillery says right on the label, “The best fertilizer is the footprint of the farmer.” Marvelous words for a marvelous and highly expressive gin.
My water is equally important when making tea for my curatives. I choose to use water filtered through a Mavea “Inspired Water” filtration pitcher. Sure, my tap water is fine- but it’s highly acidic from the area of NJ where I live. There is no chlorine fortunately, but there are minerals that turn the inside of the tea kettle bright green. I don’t want to drink that! Any water for ice or for tea/coffee is set through the Mavea pitcher. By now this procedure is just rote. Draw the water, filter it and boil it for tea. What is so difficult about it? Nothing.
The Far East Cocktail
2 oz. Barr Hill Gin (Distilled from Juniper, Raw Honey and pure Vermont Spring Water)
1 oz. Barrow’s INTENSE Ginger Liqueur
4 drops (no more!!!) Bitter End Curry Bitters
1 Tea Bag- or loose tea English or Irish Breakfast Style is fine. You want it strong!
Water from your Mavea “Inspired Water” pitcher
Raw Honey to taste for sweetness
-Boil water and when just off the rolling boil, pre-heat your tea mug, then pour out
-Add your tea to the cup
-Add the liqueurs
-Sweeten to taste with RAW HONEY
-Drop no more than four drops of the Bitter End Curry Bitters over the top
-Sip to your continued good health
You can also try a UNDERBERG in a pinch. Underberg only comes in 20 ml portions. That’s all you need to stave off a particularly evil hangover. I’ve also found that Fernet Branca is highly effective in times of dire need.
If you like to drink your cure, you may want to try the new product named Blowfish. I have to say it’s been a very long time since I’ve had a hangover, so I cannot recommend it by saying that I tried this product. What I do know is that it contains: aspirin, caffeine and antacid, all ingredients long known to stave off a particularly evil hangover.
I suppose that the best thing you can do is not drink too much in the first place! If you do drink, make sure that you have one glass of water for every cocktail. I actually recommend at least two 8 oz. glasses of water. You might think that you’re going to float away- and that is true. But take it from me. I’m a pro. I don’t get hangovers because, well… remember the famous line in Chinatown.
“Forget it, Jake. It’s Chinatown.”