I often have the opportunity to sample new spirits, get my hands on all kinds of cocktail recipes and learn about other spirit-based foods. Below is a virtual sampling of a few things that have passed my lips, which you may want to pass by yours as well!
Clement Creole Shrubb Liqueur D’Orange
My husband Eddie and I taste-tested this spirit, sans cocktail, at last year’s Speed Rack event (link to story: http://evewine101.com/2011/11/18/eve-discovers-speed-rack-la-competition). We liked it all by its lonesome and when I spied it on the shelf at Total Wine in Northridge, I had to buy it. Once home, we experimented with it for a martini recipe:
½ to 1 shot Clement Creole Shrubb Liqueur D’Orange
Fill remaining with your favorite unflavored vodka
Shake and pour into iced martini glasses (We keep two in the freezer at all times, or you can fill with ice while you are making the drink, then dump out just before pouring in cocktail.
Garnish with lemon peel after swiped rim of glass.
The lemon cut the liqueur’s sweetness and added a nice tangy element. The Rhum (as its spelled on the website) and orange seems a natural combination. In the vodka martini it very smooth, balanced, with hints of orange rind, cinnamon, cloves, holiday spices and iced tea.
Brandon Bartlett’s Hippodrome Cocktail
Brandon Bartlett is a Sr. Sales Manager for Jim Beam, akaCorkDork on Twitter and the co-host of Lip TV’s The Wine Down show with Casa Dumetz winemaker Sonja Magdevski (Here’s a link to a show we did together: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=deg0V7gyRcg)
Of course Brandon and I are Facebook friends and when I asked Brandon about his new profile photo, a cocktail that appeared to be on fire, he said it was called, “The Hippodrome” and “is named after the new casino in London that I first had it.”
The photo of the cocktail, upon closer inspection, revealed that it was not on fire –
Brandon only held his drink above a fireplace, which made it appear as if it had a flaming top. I still wanted the recipe!
2 parts Gin (citrus profile not London Dry)
1 part Lillet Blanc
2 dashes grapefruit bitters.
Stir until cold
Garnish with orange oil from peel in drink and around rim, then place peel in glass.
Twice the Vice
At the recent WhiskyLiveLA (And here’s one more link, to the full story of the event: http://evewine101.com/2012/10/26/whisky-heaven-with-eve-via-whisky-live-la/) one of the first items we sampled was whisky flavored chocolate. But it wasn’t like any other chocolate we had. Fast forward to my holiday shopping and I ordered a box.
As it was a gift for my husband, once it arrived I didn’t take the 14 or 16-year-old single malt scotch-infused chocolate to sample, I took the “V12Year”. OMG, not your usual liqueur-infused candy that squirts or spills a sticky mess. These are more like smooth dark chocolate truffles. With just a hint of bitterness against the dark chocolate, raisin, and a long finish that shows more of the scotch flavor. Tasting this at 9 in the morning for this article, yes, it made me crave a single malt to pair it with. Next time.