Southern Dignity

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The inspiration for this cocktail came from making flan one night with my mom. I like the sensation in my mouth when tasting flan that is made with rich caramel topping on silky custard paired with one of one of my favorite tequilas or whiskeys. I am always exploring new flavor combinations for cocktails. This time I took the flan caramel topping and added a pinch of tarragon to make a syrup. If mother nature could take the most divine notes of licorice, fennel, anise soften them into a sweet flavor, tarragon would emerge. ‘Southern Dignity’ holds true with burnt toffee notes and a suggestion of tarragon that pairs well with captivating rye, orange, and whiskey cask-aged sparkling cider which seems to ‘dance on your tongue.’ Cheers!

  • 1.5 oz George Dickel Rye
  • 1.5 oz Crispin Bird on a Wire Whiskey Cask-aged Hard Cider
  • .5 Caramel Tarragon Syrup
  • 2 dashes Fever Tree Orange Bitters

Combine everything in a beaker with ice. Stir well. Fine strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with a flamed orange peel.

Caramel Tarragon Syrup

  • 1/4 brown sugar
  • 1/4 white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dried tarragon
  • 1/4 cup water

Add all ingredients into a small sauce pan. Let simmer about ten minutes stirring consistently until liquid is golden brown. Let cool. Fine strain into an airtight container.

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Will You Mari-achi Me?

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I am always finding inspiration in the Latin culture. I have fallen in love with the bright bold colors not just used in celebrations but in everyday life. I am constantly curious as well as fascinated with the spices and traditions found in Mexican cooking. I spent the past summer learning spanish and how to become a real Mexican cook. Trust me once you making tortillas from scratch, you will never go back to the store-bought rubbery ones. This lead to spending countless hours at Mi Pueblo asking the people who work there, “Qué es esto?” Ok.. well then “¿Qué hace con ello?” I came across tamarind last week. One of the friends I have made at Mi Pueblo Francisco, said “What are you going to do with that tamarindo Senorita?” When I told him I am going to make a syrup out of it and put it into tequila, he looked horrified. Not that it was a bad idea. I got the feeling Francisco doesn’t let anyone touch his tequila.

Salted tamarind syrup is amazing. The flavors in tamarind are sour, tangy with a prune fruit roll-up like sweetness. I took its natural sweetener and enlivened it by adding fresh ginger. ‘Will You Mari-achi Me?’ begins with toasted honey, butterscotch, and vanilla that hits deep on your palate, tamarind ginger syrup creates an intense sensation followed by the bold citrus in grapefruit that simply leaves your mouth begging for more.

  • 2 oz Don Julio Reposado
  • .5 oz Ginger Tamarind Syrup
  • 1 barspoon Elizabeth’s All Spice Dram
  • 3 oz Fresh Squeezed Ruby Red Grapefruit Juice
  • 2 dashes Bittercube Cherry Bark Vanilla Bitters

Add all ingredients into a shaker with ice. Shake well. Fine strain into a chilled rocks glass. Garnish with a lime wedge.

Salted Tamarind Syrup

  • 1/2 lb fresh tamarind
  • 1 table spoon sugar
  • 1 table spoon agave syrup
  • 1 teaspoon freshly chopped ginger
  • one pinch salt

Peal the hard outer shell of tamarind. Place pods in a small sauce pan with just enough water to cover them. Bring water up to a boil for three to five minutes. Turn off heat and let cool. Carefully seperate tamarine from inside seeds. Bring back up to a boil for another five minutes stiring so that the seeds have a chance to seperate compltetly. Let cool again. Fine strain seeds out. Add freshly chopped ginger and a pinch of salt. Let cool. Place in a blender, blend until smooth.