Well, after reading a number of articles on the Corpse Reviver II, on other mixology related sites, I decided to give it a try. Finding Lillet Blanc was the hardest part and required a trip 100 km east to get some. Luckily I have family to visit in the area, so the trip wasn't just for Lillet. I built the drink using equal parts (3/4 oz) of Plymouth Gin, Cointreau, Lillet Blanc and fresh lemon juice. I then added three drops of Henri Bardouin pastis. Gave it a shake and strain, poured into a martini glass, sniffed and sipped. The nose is lemon and orange, which isn't surprising. The flavour is unique, but the citrus (lemon and orange) stands out. The Corpse Reviver II is smooth, but really nothing substantial. I was going to write a more in depth article about this drink, but after trying it, I'm not sure there is much to write about. I suppose not all drinks can be great, but if you want a drink to be unique, by all means give a Corpse Reviver II a try, or order it at your local bar. It's not a wow type drink though, to me anyway.
Corpse Reviver II
Lochan Ora Scotch Liqueur
For the last week I've been fixated on the Olympics. I was thinking of taking a look at the Olympic cocktail, but it is a pretty boring drink and doesn't even come close to be as epic as the Olympics. It's just brandy, triple sec and orange juice. You might as well put Grand Marnier in a glass of OJ. So, I decided to dig through my liquor cabinet and see if there was anything interesting to write about. The bottle of choice was Lochan Ora, a sweet scotch liqueur, made by Chivas Brothers, which is very similar to Drambuie.
Cola, the Secret Formula: Part I
Since this site is named, the Art of Drink, I'm trying to cover all aspects of the liquid world, not just alcohol, even though that is usually my main topic. In this article I'm going to discuss what is probably the number one mixer in the world, and that's cola, be it Coca-Cola, Pepsi or any other brand. First, this isn't really a secret formula, but it is created based on the knowledge of cola formulation. Also, it may be partly inspired by a known formula of Pepsi from the 1920's. The Pepsi formula was made public when the company went bankrupt in 1923.
Energy Drinks and Vodka
The energy drink craze has taken hold in the past few years, and along with that it has become a mixer of choice for a new generation. The king of all energy drinks is Red Bull, but there are a great number of competitors like Monster Energy, Sobe Adrenalin Rush, Woop Ass and Bawls. They one key ingredient in all of these is caffeine. At clubs these energy drinks are mixed with vodka in the hopes of getting better buzz. Do all these extra ingredients, like Taurine, ginseng, L-Carnitine and vitamins do anything? Well, having studied chemistry for many years and worked for a pharmaceutical company and a pharmacy, I may be able to shed so light on this.
When is a Bellini not a Bellini?
When it is a Moxie's Bellini! At my new bartending gig one of the signature drinks is the Bellini. It is a very popular drink, but is more of a slushy then a classic Bellini. It seems that at some point in time, some one (Milestone restaurant chain) came up with the idea to ride on the coat tails of Giuseppe Cipriani original classic Bellini, made from white peach puree and Italian sparkling wine (prosecco). Moxies uses the name to describe their flavourful international peach slushy, but it barely resembles the classic recipe. Now, this drink is very popular and they are sold frequently and people do like them, so I can't argue with that, but if you are looking for a true classic Bellini, Moxies won't have it. But we will try to make any drink to your specifications if you ask of course.
Many classic drinks use orgeat syrup as a component of the drink. It is most famous for contributing to the original Mai Tai but it can be found in many other classics including the Scorpion, Japanese cocktail and the traditional French drink called the Momisette. Orgeat, sometimes called "French Orgeat", is simply a sweetened almond syrup with a little orange flower water. The origins of this syrup are quite interesting and the taste and versatility in drinks is impressive. However, finding orgeat can be hard in some locals, and finding a bar that stocks it, may be even harder. If you can find it, buy a bottle, you won't be disappointed. If you can't find a bottle, I will provide a simple recipe to make your own orgeat.
Some Info About the Author
For those who are interested in knowing who is publishing this site, here is some information. First, my name is Darcy O'Neil and I have been bartending for just about 2.5 years. I originally studied chemistry for 4 years and worked in a research and development laboratory for six years. I've worked for a pharmacy and a pharmaceutical company and done computer related work. I came upon bartending, partly by chance, and have taken to it like a fish to water. Currently, I'm contributing to the Mixology: The Journal of the American Cocktail Issue 2, and a number of other sites. The next article in Mixologist (released in April 2006) will be about "Sour Mix", so when you see a copy, pick it up.
A Little Bit About Vodka
The idea of the purest, cleanest vodka is one of the biggest marketing ploy's going. Every company is advertising triple distilled or quadruple distilled, and so on, to give you the impression that the vodka is the best distillate possible. Some companies even make the gimmick go to six or seven times distilled! So what makes one vodka special and another one not so special? What would be the best way to make an ultra elite vodka? Why does all of this matter? 'm not quite sure, but vodka is the number one selling spirit and prices for a bottle are climbing to the levels of single malt scotch and fine cognac. The majority of this is marketing, but image is everything, so it seems.
Danfields Private Reserve
There is a new kid on the block in the Canadian whisky world. At least where Iâ€™m from Danfield's Private Reserve is new. This Canadian whisky is made in Alberta, a province with vast fields of rye and other grains and pure rocky mountain water and massive oil reserves. So, it's not a bad place to begin to make a whisky. Other spirits made in Alberta include Black Velvet and Pearl vodka. This is a first impression review, and over time my opinion may change, so let us see what Danfield's whisky has to offer.
Dooley's Toffee Cream
Just over a week ago I received an email from Pam Jarret, of Behn of North America, the distributor of Dooley's Toffee Cream, asking if I would like to review Dooley's. Many times when I've walked through the local liquor store, I've seen the colourful red and blue bottle jumping out at me from the shelf, but not once did I buy a bottle. This email gave me a reason to pick one up and so I did. On the way home I dropped the first bottle in my driveway, so now it smells really nice out there, but then I had to go buy a second bottle. The second one made it home safely. The Dooley's has been sampled and mixed and here is what I think.
Moxies Part II
Well, I'm still preparing for the opening of the new Moxies. Currently, we are memorizing everything, signature drinks, the whole menu, which is huge and everything else. We train for about 4 hours per day and then study for another 4 or so. We have a 12 hour training session this Saturday, followed by a 8 hour session on Monday. It is a huge time sink, which hasn't allowed me to publish any interesting articles this week. Opening day is this Tueday (Feb 7th), and that will free up some time, since I won't have to study anymore!
I have a few articles planned, including a review of Dooley's Toffee Cream (good stuff) and a few more cocktails. Since Moxie's lounge (called the M-Bar) is carrying some scotch (Cragganmore 12, Oban 14, Lagvulin 16 and Talisker 18) I might do some reviews on those. And of course, I'm sure I will have some bartending updates. So far everyone is excited to work for Moxies, so hopefully that will make it a great place to work!