March 13, 2006
St. Patrick's Day is coming, and this year, instead of gorging yourself on green beer until you see leprechauns, maybe you should try to class things up a little bit. We've found a recipe for a Bailey's-style irish cream liqueur, so you can sip a little something nice over ice, instead of waking up behind some green dumpster somewhere.
Homemade (Bailey's-style) Irish Cream Liqueur
1 cup Irish whiskey
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
2 cups half & half
2 tablespoons chocolate syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules
1/2 teaspoon coconut extract
Place all of the ingredients in a blender and mix well.
You can drink it right away or store it in a pretty decanter in the refrigerator. The flavor improves every day!
Serve your homemade Irish Cream Liqueur over ice, add it to your coffee or pour it over a scoop of ice cream for dessert.
via Bella Online
March 5, 2006
As Whiskey Week winds to a close, it suddenly hit us that we've mostly been focusing on straight Bourbons without thinking about cocktails. That's a great tragedy, because it just so happens that our favorite drink recipe in the world contains whiskey - the Old Fashioned. We were going to compile a ton of information of this amazing and underappreciated drink for your education and edification, but it turns out Robert Hess over at DrinkBoy has already done so, and he did an amazing job.
First, his thoughts on this misunderstood mix:
Only a few other cocktails that have survived to modern day that comes from the era of the Martini and the Manhattan. There is one cocktail of similar lineage, but holds nowhere near the same level of respect and esteem as either the Martini or the Manhattan. This cocktail is the Old Fashioned. But instead of being held in any sort of awe, the Old Fashioned is often seen as just one of those old slop drinks that isn’t worth the time it takes to make it. And to taste it the way many modern bartenders serve it, it’s no surprise.
And a tragedy that is, because it's one of the best drinks going out there. Here's Robert's recipe, which is the exact same one we use when we're looking to get Olde Tymey.
- 1/2 orange slice
- 1 cube sugar
- 2 dashes Angostura bitters
- 2 ounces rye or bourbon whiskey
Muddle orange, sugar, bitters together until the sugar is mostly dissolved. Fill glass with ice, then add the whiskey. Garnish with a marachino cherry, and perhaps an additional orange slice. Serve with a swizzle stick and/or straw
We recommend you give it a try, but make sure you mix your own or carefully monitor the bartender you give the task. Oh, and while you're at it, check out some Old Fashioned historical information and a few other recipe variations in Mr. Hess's article Renewing An Old Fashion.
March 3, 2006
Historically, we haven't paid much attention to popular whiskey liqueur Southern Comfort. You might think it's because we're purists who prefer to stick to pure whiskeys instead of sweeter liqueurs. In fact, you'd be wrong.
The real reason we haven't turned our bloodshot gaze to SoCo (as the kids call it) is that our editor-in-chief had a run-in with it in college, and he has trouble even looking at the bottle. It seems our fearless leader was in a "shot race" whilst in college, and he drank somewhere in the neighborhood of 17 shots of the stuff, with semi-disastrous results. Guess that doesn't really fit in with SoCo's "Start things up, Know when to stop. Drink Responsibly." campaign. Consider him properly chastised.
So why are we bringing it up? We've started seeing some pretty cool TV ads for the stuff, and they're flashy enough to even pique his interest. Our favorite one used to be the one where a group of friends is trying to find a train for Prague. The newest features a drink called the SoCo Lime, and it's set in New Orleans. Flashy visuals, peppy music and a kind of shot we'd never tried before? Let's just say we were interested.
Apparently all you do for a SoCo Lime is mix a shot of SoCo with a splash of sweetened lime juice (like Rose's for example), shake it with ice, and shoot it. Sounds similar to the daily ritual here in the Liquor Snob offices, and we're going to have to try it out. Learn more about SoCo and check out the ads if you haven't seen them yet, at SouthernComfort.com. Oh, and let us know if you've tried the SoCo Lime - will it be good enough to turn around the opinion of our relucant Editor in Chief?
February 4, 2006
As we were trolling the Web today looking for all things bright and boozy, we came across a cryptic mention of someone making a cocktail out of Scotch and milk. Yes, we're serious.
Not only that, we suddenly were hit with a memory from the liquor-filled crevices in the back of our brains of some poet or another we were forced to read in college mentioning the drink. It sounded like an abomination to us, but we were curious - what would Scotch and milk taste like, and why the hell would someone drink it?
According to our research, the drink is usually taken by people who have ulcers but don't want to cut down on their daily dram. While we find the idea of just depth-charging some milk into our precious Scotch to be a bit revolting, we did find a passable recipe for you ulcer-sufferers (or grown up babies) out there. It's called Scotch Milk Punch, and though we don't have an ulcer, we're preparing ourselves for the day our stomach gives out.
Scotch Milk Punch
2 oz. Scotch
6 oz. Milk
1 tsp. Powdered Sugar
Shake with ice and strain into a collins glass. Garnish with nutmeg.
We used White Horse Scotch and substituted our home-made simple syrup
for the powdered sugar. The drink got quite frothy, and all in all it tastes like a poor man's eggnog or a milk shake for drunks. Also, keep in mind that you don't have to do it only with Scotch; try it with other whiskeys, or you can give it a go with brandy or some other liquor.
Recipe via BarNoneDrinks: Scotch Milk Punch
Update - FYI, we've been feeling more than a little nauseous since we drank this bad boy. And we're not talking "post roller coaster after too many hot dogs" nauseous, either. It's more like the "hey Kane, what's that coming out of your chest?" kind of nausea. We're hoping it's not attributable to the drink, but we thought we should warn you.
January 21, 2006
There seems to be a major proliferation of cocktail recipe websites right now, from TheBar.com to Extratasty, and those are just the ones we've covered. The latest site we've found is Drinknation, and while the offering isn't that much different from other sites, they do differentiate themselves by offering one feature their contemporaries don't - the ability to access the site through your cell phone. Yup, similar to the iPod bartender, Drinknation is a mobile database you can access without dragging your laptop around and looking for a wireless connection.
From the press release:
Be the hit of the party with Drinknation, a new mobile application which brings the breadth and depth of a Bartender's Bible to the palm of your hand. Whether you're in a bar or planning a house party, mixology 101 is only a flip (phone) away.
Drinknation is available through U.S. mobile carriers like Verizon, U.S. Cellular, Alltel, Cricket, MetroPCS, MidWest Wireless, Cellular South, and NTelos, and will be available next month on Sprint. It's also available through international carriers like Tata, Telefonica Moviles, Telstra, and Hutch. The mobile service offers suggestions and special tips, and features drinks that turn ingredients into innovation.
Revelers can now create their own speed dial of drinking by customizing a recipe file of favorite concoctions that will always be with them. The service also offers party games, like guessing a drink based on its ingredients, and a search function allows easy retrieval of popular recipes by name, ingredient, theme or category, as well as browsing for ideas and finding out what drinks are popular.
Read the full press release here
You can visit Drinknation for recipes and information, plus find out more about the mobile drink service and set it up on your phone.
Much thanks to the fine folks at Strange New Products for the heads up on this one.
January 19, 2006
Three words...Guinness ice cream.
1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
1 cup whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
2/3 cup Guinness stout
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons molasses
4 egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. In a medium saucepan, scrape in the vanilla bean seeds. Add the pod, milk, and cream. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Turn off the heat, cover the pan, and let the flavors infuse for 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, whisk together the stout and molasses. Bring to a boil and turn off heat.
3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the yolks, sugar, and vanilla extract. Whisk in a few tablespoons of the hot cream mixture, then slowly whisk in another 1/4 cup of the cream. Add the remaining cream in a steady stream, whisking constantly. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan.
4. Stir the beer mixture into the cream mixture. Cook the custard over medium heat, stirring often with a wooden spoon, for 6 to 8 minutes or until the custard thickens enough to coat the back of the spoon.
5. Strain the mixture into a bowl and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight. Process the custard in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions.
Three more words...makes one quart.
via Boston.com - Guinness Ice Cream
January 10, 2006
There's another cocktail recipe site on the Web, and it's called Extratasty. So what's it all about? It's set up like a community, where you go and set up your own bar, tag your favorite drinks, and other people can search for them and rate them. We've seen similar ideas in drink recipe sites before, but we liked the addition of the community type stuff. You can share drinks and make friends, just like a regular bar but without anyone borrowing money for "one more drink" or puking on your coat. Plus, their slogan is "Get Your Booze On," so they get points for that.
Head on over to Extratasty and set up your bar, submit your favorite drink recipes, and rate some existing ones. We were most intrigued by the Duck Fart and the Skylab, but for different reasons.
January 6, 2006
Meet Jack. Jack is the bartender over at TheBar.com, serving up virtual drinks and telling witty cyber-stories. And he's pretty good too...we were solidly entertained for a good 10 minutes watching him mix drinks and tell stories about everything from running a marathon for a case of Johnnie Walker scotch to "borrowing" his employer's private jet to take a beautiful girl to Paris.
Jack has flair, panache and a predilection for only serving Diageo products, but we can forgive him for that since the Diageo line includes Guinness, Smirnoff, and Tanqueray, plus some other brands you might recognize. He's not quite as easy to boss around as the subservient chicken, and he doesn't have the...assets of the Beer.com virtual bartender, but he'll keep you from being bored on a Friday afternoon, plus the site offers some interesting cocktail recipes if you click on "Drinks."
Pull up a stool at TheBar.com.
December 7, 2005
We just got an email from Kevin over at The Scotch Blog, and apparently Scotch isn't the only whisk(e)y he drinks. He was perusing the Maker's Mark website and found an interesting egg nog recipe just in time to get ready for your holiday party.
Sure, our hearts will probably stop due to the two-dozen eggs, but a nog recipe that calls for a liter of bourbon? We're so there.
Maker's Mark Bourbon Eggnog
1 liter Maker's Mark
1 quart milk
1 quart heavy cream
2 dozen eggs
1 1/2 cups sugar
Nutmeg for garnish
Separate eggs and beat yolks until creamy. Whip sugar into yolks. Beat whites until they stand in peaks, adding 1/2 cup additional sugar, if desired. Beat yolks and Maker's Mark together, add whites. Beat cream. Add cream and milk to mixture. Add nutmeg to taste and garnish each cup with nutmeg. Makes 2 1/2 gallons.
This recipe, along with a bunch of other interesting ones that aren't so holiday-centric, can be found on the Maker's Mark Recipes
page. You can also sign up to be a Maker's Mark Ambassador
and get all sorts of cool offers, print out score cards for your next Bourbon tasting, and name a barrel of Maker's after yourself or someone else!
December 5, 2005
We're buzzing over here, but it's not from our typical mid-morning constitutional shot...it's the anticipation of caffeine jitters. That's right, move over, Kahlua...we've just found a recipe for home-made coffee liqueur that looks like it's as easy as it is tasty. Our good friend Rob sent it along, and he says it tastes great...plus we love any recipe that calls for grain alcohol in gallon increments (even if it's partial gallons).
Whether you're preparing to watch The Big Lebowski and you need to prepare some stellar Caucasians, you want to whip up a batch of the World's Blackest Russians, or you just want to impress your in-laws at your next holiday gathering, this stuff looks like a must-try. Plus, if you're caffeine-sensitive (here's looking at you, Ashley), you can use decaffeinated instant coffee to get that Kahlua buzz without all the caffeine side-effects. Wuss.
We've got the interns out rounding up the ingredients as we speak, and we're looking forward to the coffee coffee buzz buzz.
Homemade Kahlua Recipe
1/5 gallon Grain Alcohol
2C Dark Brown Sugar
½C Instant Coffee (Don’t buy generic)
6 Tbsp Vanilla (Use real bourbon vanilla, not the imitation crap)
Heat water, sugar, and honey until melted.
Add coffee crystals and simmer 30 minutes.
Cool to 110 degrees and add vanilla.
Let set for at least 30 minutes, stirring frequently.
Add alcohol and stir well.
***Do Not Bring To A Boil***