It got very cold very quickly in Davis. Autumn lasted but a few weeks it seems and now I’m stuck with the dry, bitter cold. Of course with the cold weather I’m supposed to be making punches, warm rums, and hot toddys. The last of those I can’t stand and the other two I’ve had no experience with whatsoever. Besides, I thought I’d try to capture a bit of the lost summer and make a Daiquiri
2 oz. dark rum
1 oz. lime juice
1 oz. simple syrup
Add all ingredients to a shaker filled with ice. Shake, and strain into a chilled Martini glass. Garnish with a lime wheel.
You’ll notice that this drink isn’t being served in a pineapple, a bright color, or got half a fruit basket popping out of the top of it. Frozen Daiquiri’s are quite something else. Some might call them an ‘abomination.’ Not me, I’m too kind. But some might. A real Daiquiri is a simple cocktail, and an old one. Originating in Cuba sometime in the late 19th century the drink is attributed an American engineer and brought to the United States, New York specifically, by a Congressman! The drink caught on from there with the US military before becoming popular nationwide during World War II, rationing made vodka and whiskey harder to come by!
The original drink was white rum served in a tall glass over cracked ice, with sugar being poured over the ice and then limes squeezed into the glass. The cocktail was then stirred until the glass frosted. Today, it is shaken with shaved ice and served in a cocktail glass. Dark rum is often substituted today as well.
Anyway, despite being delicious the Daiquiri did not quite warm me up as much as I had hoped. Oh well!
I’ve never been much for sours. This might be because I’ve never found a reason to order one? Or maybe I have and the bartender wasn’t any good at making it? I don’t know. The drink is a classic though and quite simple to make. Apparently, there is a method to making sours (see tip two) that I was unaware of. I was also unaware that margaritas are considered sours. The more you know… Anyway, the big decision to make with a Whiskey Sour is what type of whiskey to use? bourbons, ryes, Irish or Scotchs all have their own unique flavor profiles and alter the taste of the cocktail considerably!
2 oz. Whiskey
1 oz. simple syrup
3/4 oz. fresh lemon juice
Combine all ingredients in a shaker over ice and shake. Strain into a chilled, ice-filled rocks glass. Garnish with a maraschino cherry. I didn’t have one so I used a raspberry.
I made two whiskey sours, one with Jameson and the other with Bulleit rye. They were surprisingly different from each other! The rye was so sweet that it almost overpowered the lemon juice, the Jameson had hints of vanilla and spice. I enjoyed both but preferred the one with Jameson on this night.
I follow a cocktail maker on Tumblr, named DrinkShouts, they often show cocktails that look amazing. I’ve often wanted to make them but they usually require liquors that I don’t have and aren’t willing to purchase. They recently promoted the Bee’s Knees, a cocktail that dates back to Prohibition times. It is believed that the inclusion of lemon and honey was in order to mask the taste of bathtub gin. That might be the case, but it’s a delicious cocktail even with good gin.
2 oz. Gin
3/4 oz. Fresh Lemon Juice
.3/4 oz. Honey Syrup
Combine ingredients in a shaker full of ice. Shake. Strain into a chilled cocktail coupe, if you have one. I don’t so I used a margarita glass. No garnish, or a lemon twist.
The Bee’s Knees has a nice smooth honey flavor with a hint of sour. Depending on the type of gin you use there’ll be a hint of juniper as it goes down. The honey syrup is delicious and I think I’m going to try using it in other cocktails that call for simple syrup. It has a distinctly honey taste to it, one I found quite appealing.
I know it’s moving into Autumn, and for a few days it even felt like that here in Northern California but now? Now, it seems were back at the tail end of summer. Blue skies, warm or even hot days… With an Indian Summer in full effect, I decided to make another summer cocktail, a White Linen. This is a deliciously refreshing cocktail that was born right here in “Norcal” at the Shady Lady bar in Sacramento (or Ella’s they share a bartender.)
1 1/2 oz gin
1/2 oz St. Germain
1/2 oz simple syrup
1 oz lemon juice
5 or 6 thin English cucumber slices
Combine everything with ice in a shaker and shake well. Strain into glass with ice, top with soda water, and garnish with a cucumber slice.
If you like cucumbers, and gin, you’re going to like this cocktail. If you happen to be in the midst of an unusually mild winter or preternaturally long summer you can’t go wrong with a White Linen. The hint of fresh cucumber, the sweetness of elder flower. A lovely cocktail.