Tag: science

Science

High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) Part I

High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is all the rage these days. Actually, its more likely to cause opinionated rage, at least on the Internet. In the summer of 2006, I was going to discuss this topic but got distracted by all the boozy goodness. Then Scott, at Scott’s Rum Pages, brought up the point about HFCS in the Rum and Coke post. This reminded me that I was going to write something about this to […]

Science

Cyanide in Apricot & Cherry Pits

Even before I wrote the maraschino cherry post, some people had asked me whether the quantity of cyanide in fruit pits/stones (apricot, peach, plum, cherry, etc.) was significant enough to harm someone and whether there was a way to remove the cyanide from the kernels. Since the world has a fascination with deadly ingredients, let’s talk about the toxicity of fruit kernels, whether there is any method to remove the toxic cyanide and bust some […]

Recipe for cocktail cherries.
Science

Maraschino and Cocktail Cherries

As much as the maraschino cherry is reviled by professional bartenders, it is lovingly embraced by the consumers of sundaes and artificially flavoured fruit “martinis”. Why do people love the artificial variety? Aside from the brilliant red colour, the cherries remain plump like a cherry should be, and not shriveled like the head of a 105 year old person. Oddly, a portion of my part-time lab job involves processing samples with the intended goal of […]

Bourbon Barrels
Science

Barrel Aged Cocktails

What happens when you age a cocktail? Does barrel ageing help or hinder the flavour and what is happening chemically to the liquor mixture inside the barrel? Do you really need a barrel to make them? These are the questions everyone wants to know about aged cocktails, and really, this is a unique and little-understood process so let’s do the research and discover what is happening. Aged cocktails first started with bottled aged cocktails by […]

Science

Does Grey Goose Contain Glycerine?

The people who market vodka are ripe with praise for their product. The machismo from these companies is enough to make Kim Jong-un blush. With a large enough marketing budget, you can create any image you want, and Grey Goose was the first vodka company to prove it. They made an unaged, technologically simple spirit into an ultra-premium, must have product. The downside of making a very simple product, and charging twice as much, is […]

Science

Glycerol in Vodka Results

After preparing all of my test solutions on a, sunny, Saturday afternoon, I decided that a beautiful Tuesday evening was perfect to spend in the lab, the same lab I spent all day in. But the effort was for a good cause, which was to answer the nagging question: Does Grey Goose Contain Glycerol? It’s one of those questions that people have debated for a long time, but as far as I can tell, nobody […]

Science

Introduction to Molecular Mixology

Lately, cocktails have been in a renaissance. There has also been an increased interest in making them a culinary equal. Molecular mixology is one of those trends that is being mirrored from the kitchen because molecular gastronomy is the food equivalent. The basic idea, about both of these techniques, is to apply scientific analysis and techniques to cooking and mixing. On the kitchen side, it is creating unique food combination’s and on the bar front, […]

Ammonia Coke with Aromatic Spirits of Ammonia
Soda

Ammonia Coke

Adding things to Coca-Cola is a time honoured tradition, one that immediately comes to mind is rum. Another is Aromatic Spirits of Ammonia. Now, this isn’t kitchen cleaner ammonia, which would be a big mistake, this is a pharmaceutical preparation that has been used for over a century, even before Coke was invented. For druggists, this preparation was an over-the-counter medicine used to treat a variety of conditions. Unlike other patent medicines (snake oil), Aromatic […]

Science

Ability to Distinguish Whisky from Brandy

This is the second part of a write up on a persons ability to distinguish one spirit from another. Part one was Malt vs Blended whisky and this part is brandy vs whiskey. In the first research paper, it was concluded that an inexperienced whisky drinker could not distinguish between a single malt or blended scotch. Also, experienced whisky drinkers have a difficult time distinguishing the two types of scotch in a blind test. The […]