espolon

Harlow & Sage

Estamos de regreso con una nueva serie the bebidas utilizando tequila como la base principal, jugando con la idea the mezclar regiones…. JK. The blog is still in English. For now.

Hello again, muchachas and welcome to the last post which features the stellar photography by Lyudmila Zotova. Hopefully there will be more down the line with her (or other rad people out there!) but there was only so much you can do in a couple hours. Though I do believe Sting would disagree with that statement.

I was recently told that my drinks, interesting as they may seem, are not always easy to make due to some of the ingredients not being so easy to find. My initial reaction was: Oh fuck. What do you mean you cant find a rare form of gum Arabic that only grows in a tiny region of Africa?! You mean to tell me not everyone has access to the vast options of booze we swim in (like Scrooge McDuck) here in Boston?!

I want there to be a big range of cocktails you can make anywhere but I also like introducing readers to new products that I believe are exciting and new in the arena of craft cocktails but I’ll make an effort to make them as accessible as possible moving forward, with the occasional sumptuous tipple.

*Remember a while back when I posted this gin drink (which I’ve since updated so do check it out) where I used this fun syrup made from guava juice and sage ?!? No? It’s totally cool. We’re still friends but I will NEVER forget this betrayal.

I was just fucking around with the idea of tiki but with “Spanish flair”. What that means exactly, I don’t know. But I imagine it would be like me going out to a bar wearing a Hawaiian shirt, those sweet shoes bullfighters wear and a Mexican sombrero. If you wear this exact combination when you go out, please don’t. Just. don’t

Once you’ve made the syrup and placed it in some form of bottle or empty milk carton, you can start cranking these out in no time. My wife gets thirsty real quick so I’ve learned to make these in about 8 seconds. I know better now. Oh no, I think she’s coming…

Harlow & Sage

2 oz reposado tequila [ Espolon ]

3/4 oz Licor 43

1 1/2 oz guava & sage syrup

1 oz fresh lime juice

several dashes of Peychaud’s bitters

Measure and pour all except for the bitters in a shaker
Add some ice (ice), baby?
Beat the hell out of it and strain into a glass full of crushed ice
Hit it with the Peychaud’s bitters at the top to give it a nice red color
Garnish with sage leaves / kaffir lime leaves, an orange peel or a picture of me.

[ Enjoy ]

I used fresh guava for the syrup in this recipe BUT you can literally use ANY fresh fruit and I bet you it will work, as long as it’s sweet in nature with a strong backbone. This would go perfect with stone fruit like peaches mirabelle plums just to name a few.

Madrugal

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This drink came about when I remembered why I enjoy making cocktails in the first place.

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I was on some cocktail-making sabbatical for a while there. I got caught up with having to be all fancy with spirit types and trying out new techniques all to try and make the next big classic cocktail that everything I would come up with ended up tasting like shit. It stopped being fun and I recoiled into some weird stasis where I would get tiny panic attacks by looking at my bar and thinking “I NEED to make something amazing that everyone will love”. That’s unrealistic. You cant please everyone (you hear that, every girl I’ve ever dated!) and it isn’t about making something fancy, it’s about making something good.

Luckily, I’m surrounded by some talented people that pulled me out of that rut, simply by making drinks that tasted great but kept it simple. So I went back to basics and thought about why I even wanted to make this site to begin with (other than to find my biological parents #obvi) and it became clear that I make drinks for the people around me. That most people dont know about differences in amari or what makes one specific spirit better than another for a cocktail or why add 1 of 300 bitter types, etc. I want to make drinks that people enjoy, regardless of what goes in them. Because I know what I put in each and every one and it’s my pleasure to then pass along that knowledge. Through a website. Riddled with F-bombs and teenage angst.

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  • reposado tequila
  • campari
  • limes & lemons
  • grapefruit shrub
  • Owl’s Brew mixer

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This cocktail uses “sour mix”. Not that shitty stuff that my site takes it name after but fresh, carefully swaddled, flavorful goodness. Since I went back to basics this week, I figured I’d start there. By making my version of a sour (inspired by a margarita since that’s where I see the most lethal use of sour mix) with the lovely pre-crafted shrub but you get extra points if you make your own shrub. Even more-so if you send me some.

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What’s cool about this drink is that its really just a sour, so you can swap out the spirit and the modifier for basically anything and you’d end up with a great tasting drink; As long as you’re not using an Everclear & peach schnapps combo. Please dont. You’re better than that.

Reposado was the way to go here since that extra bit of aging makes for a smoother experience.

2 oz reposado tequila [ Espolón ]
3/4 oz Campari
1 oz Owl's Brew Coco-Lada artisanal mixer
3/4 oz Death to Sour Mix*

*hehe. 2 parts fresh lemon juice, 2 parts fresh lime juice, 2.25 parts grapefruit shrub [ Liber & Co ]. Pour all into a bottle and shake it up each time before use. keep refrigerated for a few days if needed. 
Pro tip: Make it the day you want to use it and try not to make more than what you'd want to use.

Pour all of the above into a shaker.
Add ice and sing it a song.
Double strain into a chilled glass and garnish with an orange peel to play off the Campari.

[ Enjoy ]

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I first learned of Owl’s Brew (who were not involved in the making of this post) thanks to Stir and Strain, via Honetlyyum‘s  site (what?). I’ll admit, that bottle had me at hello. I’ll be making other cocktails with this stuff in the future. This specific one has some pineapple & black tea (among other tasty stuff) which work wonders with the Campari & citrus of the drink.

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Silver & Gold: The lost MxMo

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I missed the last MxMo and had come up with a recipe which utilizes gold cherries (Rainier I believe is the legit name) that I didn’t want to go to waste. I’ve made a few of them now and I can confidently say that it works with most fruit currently in season if cherries aren’t your thing.

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If you think that mint julep’s are only made for the Kentucky Derby season, I will fight you. I will also most likely lose due to being deceptively weak for my size. Juleps are delicious and I don’t know why I haven’t posted one before. They’re super old school in that they’re one of those types that can be messed around with a great deal and you’d still know what it is. The important thing is to not fuck them up by how you make one (or 10). If you asked me what the most important part of any mint julep is, I’d probably say ‘technique’ (and then you’d roll your eyes at my pretentiousness). Even though I do think the quality of the spirits used in any drink is important, sometimes how that cocktail is made can be a deciding factor in making it great.

Story time: I like to shop @ Etsy. So what? Well, the problem is I kinda suck at it. So I purchased a set of silver plated cups a few weeks back thinking they were gonna be proverbially sweet. Well…About that: they were tiny. I mean, these things are good for Peter Dinklage to drink out of. They’re pretty though, so I’ll use them for making tiny-wittle-drinks for myself when no one’s around.

If you were wondering about the name, it came from me being bamboozled into buying “golden cherries” at the market, along with incorporating silver (blanco) tequila and my puny little silver cup.

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  • Espolon blanco tequila
  • Aperol
  • Fernet Branca
  • Woodford’s Reserve spiced cherry bitters
  • mint
  • rainier cherries

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You’re gonna need to fight your instincts of muddling the mint in the mixing tin. Trust me. A mint julep is built in the serving tin (or glass) and you’ll want to muddle it there to preserve all the flavor and aroma.

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This is a fun drink to make and it just smells lovely; If you like mint. If you don’t, who are you?? 

We’ll make this drink in 3 steps:

Take a NICE sprig of mint (as seen above) and lightly muddle them into the tin or glass you’re going to serve the drink in. Make sure you rub the entirety of the inside with the mint, then discard it. 

4 rainier cherries (pitted). muddle them in the shaker.
add 1 1/2 oz of tequila
Add 3/4 oz of Aperol
Add 2 dashes of the spiced cherry bitters
Add 2 barspoons of simple syrup
Add a BIG chunk of ice and shake (the idea is to dilute as least as possible).

Add crushed ice to the serving tin with the mint about half way.
Strain the mixing tin’s contents into it.
With a barspoon or a swizzle, stir it a bit in a fast, upwards motion.
Top up with more crushed ice. 
Drizzle ~1/4 oz of Fernet on top.
Garnish with the other sprig of mint. 

[ Enjoy ]

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“crush it around the borders of the glass and leave no place untouched. Then throw the mint away—it is a sacrifice.” – From the Old Receipt of Soule Smith

I’m fairly certain I’ve talked about Chris Mcmillian before on the blog or twitter or in my dreams, I don’t know. But you should definitely check this post from The Museum of the American Cocktail.

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