Triibe Celtic Spirit - July 1, 2015

Triibe Celtic Spirit describes itself as being Irish malt whiskey infused with honey. Of course, this is a low-proof creamy liqueur, so the reality is a bit more complicated than that. Taste it and you'll also find notes of dark chocolate, espresso, and licorice. Perhaps the best way to enjoy Triibe is simply on the rocks, but it can be a substitute for Irish creme or similar to bring a unique twist to your favorite drinks.

Note: All drinks marked with an asterix are from external sources. Clicking on the drink name will take you to our references page.



The Celtic Harvest

Celtic Harvest


Ingredients:
1 oz Lemon Juice
2 oz Apple Brandy
1 oz Triibe Celtic Spirit

Instructions:
Mix all ingredients in a shaker and serve in a martini glass.


The Modern Physik

Modern Physik


Ingredients:
2 oz Tequila Reposado
1 oz Cherry Kijafa
1 oz Triibe Celtic Spirit

Instructions:
Mix all ingredients in a cocktail shaker and serve in a martini glass.


The Ritual

Ritual


Ingredients:
.5 oz Overproof Rum
1 oz Cabo Diablo Coffee Liqueur
1 oz Triibe Celtic Spirit

Instructions:
Layer cold Triibe, then Cabo Diablo, then 151 in a glass. Optionally ignite.











Wolfberger Litchi - June 1, 2015

Just in time for the oppressive summer heat comes our June Drink of the Month, Wolfberger Litchi. Litchi, more commonly known as "Lychee" in Western countries, is a sweet pink fruit used in a variety of dessert dishes in China and throughout southeast Asia. This blend also includes passion fruit, and rose petals. The result is a sweet, light, and very fragrant liqueur that pairs well with herbal gins or silver tequila. Avoid heavy spices or dark liquors as these will mask the delicate flavor.

Note: All drinks marked with an asterix are from external sources. Clicking on the drink name will take you to our references page.



The Big Bunny

Big Bunny


Ingredients:
3 oz Gin
.5 oz Lemon Juice
.5 oz Maraschino Liqueur
.75 oz Wolfberger Litchi

Instructions:
Mix all ingredients in a cocktail shaker and service in a martini glass.


The Orange Blosson

Orange Blosson


Ingredients:
.25 oz Lime Juice
2 oz Gin
1 oz Orange Juice
.75 oz Wolfberger Litchi

Instructions:
Mix ingredients in a cocktail shaker. Serve in a martini glass.


The Paris in July

Paris in July


Ingredients:
1 oz Gin
4 oz Champagne
5 Strawberry Slices
1 oz Wolfberger Litchi

Instructions:
Muddle strawberries in Litchi and gin. Pour champagne over the top.




The Rosa de Hielo

Rosa de Hielo


Ingredients:
.25 oz Lime Juice
5 oz Club Soda
.5 oz Wolfberger Litchi
2 oz Tequila Plato

Instructions:
Mix everything except club soda in an ice filled glass. Pour club soda on top











Golden Falernum - May 5, 2015

Back in April 2014, we highlighted Velvet Falernum as our drink of the month. Since that time, it has continued to be one of our bar staples and has shown up in many our of cocktails. Now however, the Bitter Truth has come out with a new spin on an old classic: Golden Falernum. Golden Falernum adds spices, cloves, ginger, and lime to the rum based liqueur we have come to know and love. The result is a spicier falernum with less of a sugary base. It continues to pair well with rum, but the strong ginger notes also make it possible to stand alone in something like club soda.

Note: All drinks marked with an asterix are from external sources. Clicking on the drink name will take you to our references page.



The Caribbean Old Fashioned

Caribbean Old Fashioned


Ingredients:
6 oz Champagne
1.5 oz Whisky
1 oz Golden Falernum

Instructions:
Pour all ingredients into a long drink glass filled with ice and stir. Garnish with orange zest.


The Ginger Bubbly

Ginger Bubbly


Ingredients:
1 oz Lemon Juice
5 oz Champagne
1.5 oz Golden Falernum

Instructions:
Pour all ingredients in a champagne flute and serve.


The Spicy Limeade

Spicy Limeade


Ingredients:
.5 oz Lime Juice
5 oz Club Soda
2 oz Golden Falernum

Instructions:
Pour all ingredients in a ice filled glass and serve.











Smoked Beverages - April 26, 2015

After man discovered fire, he has searched for the best ways to harness the deliciousness of burning trees. Humans created ovens, smokers, and grills to harness the power of smoke. For the most part, however, they have only managed to really impart the flavor of smoke for large amounts of food. This changed recently when the handheld smoker was invented.


You can smoke small amounts of food in several ways. The first in the cheapest and most readily available - Liquid Smoke. I'm not the biggest fan of this method, but I do admit to using it in a pinch. A few drops in a drink can really make a huge difference. But there's something... fake; something... overly salty, which liquid smoke imparts.


The next method yields a much more genuine smoke flavor, though it is a lot messier. Take a small pan or bowl and fill it with your favorite alcohol. Place the vessel inside of a larger container. Next to the bowl put a cigar, wood shavings, or whatever your favorite flammable (and edible) material is. Light the flame and cover the whole mess in tin foil. Allow it to burn and the smoke to settle for about 20 minutes. This should give you a very geniune smoke flavor. It will also make quite a few dishes rather messy, but that's ok. At least the power of the smoke has been harnessed.


I prefer the handheld smoker called The Smoking Gun by Polyscience. It took me a while to get my methods perfected but afterwards I can efficiently drown my beverages in a sea of smoke.


First, find an empty and clean carafe that has a lid with a tight seal. Pour your alcohol into the carafe. Using a funnel, fill the smoking gun with your favorite flammable flavor. Turn on the smoking gun, light the flame, and fill the carafe with smoke. When all of the oxygen has been replaced with smoke, take the hose out and tighten the lid. Turn off the smoking gun and allow the embers to go out. In about 20 minutes or so the smoke should be settled. If you are using clear glass, you should be able to watch the smoke line sink.


The use of a carafe keeps the smoke from escaping as badly. It also reduces the number of kitchen items which will forever smell of smoke.


Now, the next lesson is where to get the wood shavings to use in the smoker. I found the best and most cost effective way is to buy wood pellets used for pellet smokers. These things are usually about ten dollars for a couple of pounds of whatever wood your heart desires. Now, the pellets themselves are too large to use in The Smoking Gun by themselves, so you will need to use a mortar and pestle to grind them up into a usable size (about one per session is sufficient). Now, if you're like me and really don't feel like hammering wood into a pulp every time you want to use the smoker, here are some additional steps.


First, soak the wood pellets in water until they are soft and mashy. Then, get in there and mash them up into a lump watery mess. Take the wood pulp mush and spread it out on a tin foil lined baking sheet. Put the sheet in your over on the absolute lowest setting. If it's anything higher than about 200F/95C then keep the door open. The water will evaporate away leaving you with nice and dry wood bits. For a finer texture just crush them with your finger. Put all of the pulverized wood into a jar and keep in a dry area. It's must more efficient and a 12 count pack of mason jars is under twenty dollars. This ensure you have enough wood to smoke drinks for about the next decade.


I found that BBQr's Delight gives the most variety of wood pellets. I'm not necessarily looking for the absolute top of the line, since I'm not smoking for competition. I ordered one pound bags of eleven different flavors of wood pellets to test them against each other for a total cost of fifty dollars. I found one more flavor, peach wood, but they didn't have it in anything less than 20lbs.


Our methods used one pulverized dry wood pellet, 1.5 oz of Rebecca Creek Fine Texas Spirit Whiskey, one clean wine carafe, and The Smoking Gun. I smoked each sample of whisky for 30 seconds and put it in the refrigerator for 10 minutes. My dear husband then wrote up his two cents on each sample. While we did do this in one weekend we didn't do it in one evening!


Note, The Smoking Gun states that you can smoke spices and herbs and whatnot but we found that this creates a noxious smoke and makes your whisky taste like death so I recommend sticking to the things BBQ Fanatics light on fire and tobacco products.


Pellet Flavor Smoke Tasting Notes
Sugar maple Strong nose. Crisp body, with a finish like a sweet red barbecue sauce.
Black Walnut Bitter nose with a rich earthy body. More of a charred flavor.
Orange Medium nose. Slightly sour body with hints of the citrus. Not much finish, mild all around.
Cherry Sweeter nose continues into the body. Finish is almost candy-like. More dramatic than the orange.
Apple Medium nose. Crisp body, similar to orange but distinctly apple. A nice twist of cider.
Mesquite Spicy nose, slightly sweet body with lots of wood.,Good outdoorsy flavor.
Mulberry Smells like gerbil pellets. The flavor is not entirely pleasant either. Avoid this one.
Hickory Good campfire nose. Body is the most quintessentially smoky. Very good, the bar for judging other varieties.
Sassafras Medium nose. Subtle body, sweet but not overly so. Nice oaky finish.
Jack Daniel's Strong smoky nose. Rich body, earth and oak, slightest hint of sour. Not much finish.
Pecan Distinctive roasted pecans in the nose. Clean crisp body with more nut flavors. Subtle finish.







Smoke - April 5, 2015

Our drink of the month for April is smoke. The introduction of smoke can add a wonderful twist to your favorite cocktail, bringing in flavors of wood, campfires, and the great outdoors. Our favorite way to apply smoke is the Smoking Gun by PolyScience, but our upcoming article will showcase other methods as well. So grab a match and let your inner pyromaniac free!

Note: All drinks marked with an asterix are from external sources. Clicking on the drink name will take you to our references page.



The Cuban Revolution

Cuban Revolution


Ingredients:
2 oz Dark Rum
.25 oz Lime Juice
1 oz Black Rum
Heavy Smoke
.5 tsp Mango Sugar

Instructions:
Put the rums in a large container and fill with smoke. Place the container in the fridge and wait until the smoke settles. Add all the ingredients to a shaker and mix. Serve in a cocktail glass.


The Smokey Old Fashioned

Smokey Old Fashioned*


Ingredients:
.25 oz Maraschino Liqueur
A Dash Angostura Bitters
2 oz Whisky
Heavy Smoke

Instructions:
Mix ingredients together in a large glass or decanter. Fill the decanter with smoke and store in the fridge until the smoke settles. Pour over ice.


The Smokey Valentine

Smokey Valentine


Ingredients:
.5 oz Lemon Juice
2 oz Tequila Reposado
.75 oz Blood Orange Juice
Light Smoke

Instructions:
Put all the ingredients in a shaker and add the smoke. Allow to sit for a few minutes then add ice and shake. Serve over ice in a margarita glass.










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