courvoisier

River Of Gold

First post of the year…one that I had planned for the END of last year but here we are…yayyyy?!? Screw it. So by now the holidays and all their bloated spectacle are but a distant memory, yet all the weight that you got as a “present” is surely still sticking around. But it’s cool, because pants fit much better when they’re sweatpants or leggings which is all I wear these days to mask my new-found curves. I hope that all of you reading this had some great cocktails or at the very least, a solid beer over the past few weeks. Some of them might have been so good in fact, that you don’t remember them at all. Nor do you remember throwing up in the Uber but you know what, it’s all behind us. Let’s look forward. Let’s be more than what we were and make something great out of the new year. I’m obviously talking about cocktails, you guys. Be who you want to be, regardless of the year, but at least have a beautiful drink in your hand.

ingredients_punch

pineapple_cutting

Onto the cocktail. It’s fruity, full of wood notes, which mixed with the char from the pineapple, make for a fun time. GUARANTEED. Cognac is still a spirit that I struggle with in cocktails, to be honest, yet it’s super-easy for me to make into a tasty punch. It’s cold and warm months are far away, so I thought to bring a bit of tiki flavors and temperatures to the season. So put on some shorts, crank up the thermostat and invite that one friend you have over. Cause shit is about to get crazy. Unless it doesn’t. And you just have some sparkling conversation for a couple hours and then politely call it a night by 10 pm. I’ll leave that up to you.

rivergold_body

RIVER OF GOLD

makes around 10-15 servings

BOOZE

cognac | 3 cups blanc vermouth | 1 cup

BITTERS

Angostura bitters | 10 dashes Bittermens Elemakule Tiki bitters | 10 dashes

CITRUS, SYRUPS & JUICES

roasted pineapple juice | 2 cups lemon juice | 1 cup honey syrup* | 3/4 cup

MISC.

black tea | 2 cups

Pour all the items above into your beautiful punch bowl of choice and give it a good stir.

Taste it a bit and check if it needs a bit more of this or that, depending on how you’d like it.

Punch will undoubtedly need some ice, this is to chill it and dilute it since it would be a bit too concentrated at this point, even if you had chilled the liquids beforehand. I suggest making a big block of ice in whatever random bowl or Tupperware container you have. Or if you’re really cool, make clear ice blocks yourself like THIS.

Get a ladle ready, some cups and you’re done!

Black Flag

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-Insert clever Henry Rollins joke here-

I infused Cognac because I don’t care much for it. In fact, I infused about 1/2 a bottle of Courvoisier that I got for Christmas yet had never really used other than to show people that French is not only difficult to pronounce but even harder to spell. I’m sure I’ll be infusing other spirits soon (looking @ you, bottle of Knob Creek bourbon) based on this experiment. Vanilla beans. Herbs. Buffalo chicken wings. You name it; I’ll be on it.

I didn’t infuse an entire bottle because I wasn’t sure what the result would be, nor if I would want 750 ml of black tea infused cognac (which came out pretty great), so I only infused about 10 oz of it. Will I be making more? Definitely. But I think I’ll use a different brand of cognac next time or may just switch to Brandy altogether. The name comes from the black tea and the black mission fig bitters from Brooklyn Bitters . I was originally going to call it “Fuck, I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing here and this drink is strong. Oh god its so strong” but opted against it at the last minute. Maybe next time?

So here’s a booze-only drink (one of many to follow) for those that like a good cocktail with depth and variety.

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Tea infused Cognac
Benedictine
Fernet Branca
Dry vermouth
Bitters
Demerara simple

I used Dolin Dry here (after testing Lillet Blanc and Martini dry) and felt that it worked much better than sweet vermouth (Dolin Rouge) which would make it more Vieux Carre in nature and a bit sweeter.

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1 1/2 oz Bavarian Berry black tea infused Courvoisier cognac*
3/4 oz Benedictine
3/4 oz Dolin Dry vermouth
1/2 oz Fernet Branca
10 drops Brooklyn Hemispherical Black Mission Fig bitters
Couple dashes of demerara simple

*To infuse the cognac: take a single serving of your favorite black tea (I used Bavarian Berry Black, which is nice and bright with little hints of fruit) and steep it in a separate glass bottle with about 8 oz of cognac (or technically any spirit) for about 12-24 hours. Fine strain it into yet another bottle to remove any and all leaves and sediment. That’s it really. Keep it in the fridge and it’ll last for about a week. 

Pour everything in a mixing glass. Even the dashes of syrup.
Stir it nicely. In fact, let this be the therapeutic part of the process. Yeah.
Strain into a sandwich bag. Just kidding. A coupe.
Cut a fresh lemon peel and squeeze the oils in and around the glass. Discard when done.

[Enjoy]

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