Cocktail of the Week – Horse’s Neck

Horse's Neck

I know I talked about Autumn and cooling weather last Monday but as soon as I posted last week the temperatures here in central Northern California spiked with the mercury rising back into the 100s… One step forward and two steps back. This week we go with a the refreshing and cool Horse’s Neck.

Since I went ahead and picked up a bottle of brandy I wanted to make sure I included it in some cocktails. The first of which is the Horse’s Neck, a simple cooler that was popular before Prohibition. Originally made with brandy and ginger ale or soda when it was revitalized bourbon replaced the brandy, ginger beer was substituted for ginger ale and angostura bitters were added.

Horse's Neck
The ingredients

Horse’s Neck

  • 2 oz. brandy or bourbon
  • 3 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Ginger beer/ale
  • lemon for garnish

Peel a lemon in one long spiral, twist the peel around finger or spoon to create a coil. Place the peel in a Collins glass with one end hanging over the lip. Fill glass with ice. Add brandy and bitters. Top glass with ginger beer/ale.

Horse's Neck

The sweetness of the brandy blends nicely with sharp, pepperiness of the ginger beer and the bitters. It’s also really easy to make! By far the hardest part was peeling the lemon for the garnish, a step you may skip if you want. Though the long coil going up the Collins glass makes for a great presentation it isn’t actually necessary for the cocktail.

Best of all when its over 90 degrees outside at 8:00 PM this is a cold, delicious drink.Tonight I’m enjoying mine at my kitchen table instead of out on the patio…

Cocktail of the Week: The Presbyterian

the Presbyterian cocktail

Sorry, for the lack of updates. Life gets in the way sometimes. Despite not posting I have still been trying new cocktails. This week’s is a simple, yet satisfying, one. The Presbyterian is bourbon and ginger beer with a dash of bitters on ice. Quick, easy, refreshing, the perfect cocktail for drinking after a busy day at the office.

The Presbyterian cocktail
The ingredients

The Presbyterian

  • 2 oz. bourbon whiskey
  • 4-6 oz. ginger beer
  • 4 dashes bitters
  • candied ginger

Fill a highball glass with ice, add bourbon. Fill glass near top with ginger beer, add bitters. Stir and garnish with candied ginger on a cocktail pick.

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The Presbyterian is the kind of drink that makes me wish I had a back porch, or a front porch, or even just a lawn chair I could set up and take in a beautiful view while sipping this in the drink on a warm spring evening.

Ah well, something to work for I suppose… Hope you have the time this week to enjoy a cocktail!

Cocktail of the Week: Blue Mule

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I needed an excuse for using my copper mugs so I poked around on the internet for ideas and tweaks of the Moscow Mule. I saw this blueberry syrup on something and thought it’d be neat to try in a Moscow Mule. So, I bought some blueberries cooked them down and strained them into a syrup and then I made some Mules! I called it a Blue Mule because that seemed the easiest, my first inclination was to call it a Mule of a Different Color but I don’t know how I feel about putting Wizard of Oz references into my drinks…

The ingredients
The ingredients

Blue Mule

  • 1 oz vodka
  • 1/2 oz fresh lime juice
  • 1 cup Ginger beer
  • 1/2 oz – 1 oz. blueberry syrup

Pour vodka, lime juice, and ginger beer into copper cup and stir. Add crushed ice to top of cup. Pour a small amount of blueberry syrup on top and stir again. Garnish with a lime wedge and blueberries.

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Wow! This was a good idea! To get the perfect blend of blueberry, lime and ginger you might have to play with the proportions some but it’s worth it! Also, you can adjust those three ingredients depending on which flavors you want to be strong or subtle. I put in a little bit more lime juice than 1/2 oz and a 1 oz of blueberry syrup and I thought it was just about perfect though. If you need a recipe for making blueberry syrup I’ve included one below.

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Blueberry Syrup

  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 cup water

Combine all into a small pot and bring to a boil for five minutes. Then lower temperature and simmer for another ten. Stir throughout or else you’re going to have a burned pot. Using a strainer or cheesecloth strain over a bowl and then cool.

Cocktail of the Week: Kentucky Buck

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Last week, while I was enjoying my margaritas, a friend’s instragram caught my eye. It was the picture of two deep amber cocktails with the caption being “Kentucky Buck.” I’d never heard of the drink and so sent them a small note asking what it was. The reply? “Think a Moscow Mule but with bourbon and lemon instead of vodka and lime.” That definitely got my attention! So, with excitement, I jotted down the drink name and the recipe in order to make it this week.

The ingredients
The ingredients

Kentucky Buck

  • 1.5 oz Bourbon whisky
  • .5 oz lemon juice
  • .5 oz simple syrup
  • 1 strawberry
  • 2 dashes Angostora bitters
  • ginger beer

In a shaker muddle the strawberry and lemon juice. Add bourbon, simple syrup, and bitters to the shaker. Fill with ice.  Shake well. Strain into glass filled with fresh ice. Top with ginger beer and garnish with lemon wheel and strawberry slice.

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Maybe I just like cocktails with ginger beer in them? ‘Cause this was a fantastic drink. The bourbon pairs wonderfully with the sour lemons and the sweet strawberry and all of it is tied together and giving some effervescence by the carbonated ginger beer? I don’t know what magic is happening in this drink. I just know I want to drink more of it. The more of these cocktails I make the more I want a front porch to sit and enjoy them on. Cocktails are domesticating me!

Anyway, this was a phenomenal drink that I want to encourage all of you to make it or go out to a nice bar and order it; I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. Shout out to friends Justin and Dior for bringing it to my attention.

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