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Posts Tagged ‘lemon juice’

*Recent ruminations from LUPEC Boston, in case you missed ‘em in this week’s Dig.

by Pink Lady

If you’ve ever tried a Pisco Sour, you know the delights of the frothy drink, particularly the warm glow that steals over you after several sips. If you’re scratching your head and wondering, “WTF is Pisco???” do yourself a favor and read on.

Pisco is a distilled grape spirit that hails from Peru or Chile and is made from unique regional varietals. It’s born much in the same way as cognac or brandy, but is aged in stainless steel versus wood so typically has little to no discernible color. In its pre-Prohibition heyday, Pisco Punch was all the rage in the bars of San Francisco, with some bars devoted to serving that drink and nothing else. As the story so often goes, Prohibition nearly erased both pisco and punch from American cocktail landscape.

There are four different styles of pisco: pisco aromatica, pisco puro (single varietal), pisco acholado (a blend of aromatic and non-aromatic muscat grape clones), and pisco mosto verde (made from partially fermented grape juice.) Laws are less strict in Chile but in Peru, the production of pisco is highly regulated. A competitive marketplace yields great styles.

As a category pisco emphasizes place over process, allowing flavors of the grape to shine through by using stainless steel instead of wood for aging. Peruvian pisco is typically distilled just once or twice, and laws stipulate that the spirit cannot be rectified post-distillation so it must be distilled to proof. The quality of the grape is the measure of the distiller’s skill.

One brand of which are particularly fond is Macchu Pisco, helmed by the fabulous Melanie da Trindade-Asher. Her family-owned company also produces La Diablada, an acholado made from Quebranta, Italia, and Moscatel grapes. It’s floral, smooth, and extremely aromatic and an exciting way to try your favorite pisco cocktails. Sample a Pisco Sour with both and be changed.

PISCO SOUR

1.5 oz Macchu Pisco or La Diablada

1 oz simple syrup

.75 oz fresh lemon or lime juice

1 oz egg white

Angostura bitters

Combine the pisco, simple syrup, citrus juice, and egg white in a mxing glass. Dry shake to emulsify, then add ice and shake long and hard. Strain into a small cocktail glass. Garnish by sprinkling angostura bitters onto the egg white foam.

Cin-cin!

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*Recent Ruminations from LUPEC Boston, originally published in the Weekly Dig.

by Pink Lady

Ah, Labor Day—a time to relax, celebrate and have one last weekend of parties before summer turns into fall once again. We see this weekend as one last time to play, but Labor Day as a holiday has its roots in the labor movement of the late 19th century.

The first Labor Day was celebrated in New York City on September 5th, 1882, but the question of who first came up with Labor Day is debated. The most common answer is that Peter J. McGuire, general secretary of the Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners and a co-founder of the American Federation of Labor, first suggested a day to honor those “who from rude nature have delved and carved all the grandeur we behold.”

National legislation was passed honoring the holiday in the aftermath of the 1894 Pullman Strike, a conflict between labor unions and the railroad industry that halted traffic west of Chicago. US marshals and army troops ordered in by President Grover Cleveland broke up the strike, resulting in 13 deaths and 57 injuries. Following the strike, reconciliation with the Labor Party became a top priority, and legislation to make Labor Day a national holiday was rushed through Congress in order to prevent riots. It passed unanimously and was signed into law just six days after the feds left.

LUPEC would also like to give a special nod to our many forebroads who participated in labor movements throughout history. The Women’s Trade Union League, for example, organized garment and textile workers, worked for protective labor legislation for women and better factory working conditions. Groups like this also served as a support network for women working within the labor movement who were often unwelcome, even barely tolerated, by male officers.

We will keep these labor organizers in mind as we raise a glass—or rather, an ice pop—on this long, lazy holiday weekend.

The recipe below comes to us via Linnea Johannson, a badass party planner and food and lifestyle editor for Elle Magazine. We suggest experimenting with several incarnations—elderflower (use St-Germain), cherry (use Roi René Rouge) and apricot (use Rothman & Winter Orchard Apricot) are sure to delight.

 

ADULT ICE POPS

1 part Xanté pear liqueur

1 part lemon juice

1 part Champagne

lemon zest

Combine ingredients in an ice pop mold. Freeze and enjoy!

CIN-CIN!

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*Recent ruminations from LUPEC Boston, originally published in the Weekly Dig.

by Pink Lady

Who doesn’t love an Aviation? This drink is a tremendous cocktail that has been thankfully resurrected in recent years by classic cocktail cognoscenti. The drink recipe was first published in How to Mix Drinks by Hugo Ensslin, the German-born head bartender at the Wallick House Hotel in Times Square. His was the last cocktail manual to hit bookshelves before Prohibition begat the great drought in America (and now recently available in reprinted form from Mud Puddle Books.) Many consider this drink one of the last great cocktails to be invented before the Noble Experiment.

The Aviation has made a glorious comeback in the past five or so years and graces the cocktail list of many a fine drinking establishment from coast to coast in 2010. The formula, however, is slightly different than the original mixture. You’ll typically find this drink made following the 1930 recipe that Harry Craddock ran in his tome, the Savoy Cocktail book, which features gin, lemon juice, and Maraschino liqueur.

The aforementioned recipe makes a fine drink, to be sure. But Ensslin’s pre-Prohibition recipe used two liqueurs to give this concoction wings: Maraschino and Crème Yvette. The latter has been unavailable in the states until very recently, making this classic potation’s name a mystery. Add a hint of the new-old violet-hued Crème Yvette recently released from Cooper Spirits (or Crème de Violette if you can’t find it), and the drink takes on a sky blue hue. Aviation was still very new back in 1916 and a hot topic, thus a perfect candidate for a cocktail name.

We suggest you sidle up to any bar that stocks Crème Yvette or Crème de Violette and sample the original recipe today, just because you can.

AVIATION

.75 oz lemon juice

1.5 oz dry gin

2 dashes Maraschino

2 dashes Crème Yvette

Shake with ice in a cocktail shaker and strain into your favorite vintage cocktail glass. Garnish with a Maraschino cherry.

Cin-cin!

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*Recent ruminations from LUPEC Boston, in case you missed ‘em in this week’s Dig.

by Pink Lady + Bourbon Belle

Look at you, relaxing on the veranda or at the café in the early evening with a glass of something lightly sweet and lightly alcoholic. Stimulating your appetite with an aperitif? How civilized.

Aperitifs, or ‘aperitivos’ as Italians call them, were once a de rigeur start to a meal in France and Italy. These tipples were chosen for their appetite enhancing effects. As the members of LUPEC recently learned at the “Art of the Aperitif” seminar at Tales of the Cocktail (an annual convention for drink enthusiasts), many of the herbs and botanicals used in classic aperitif wines got their start in the pharmacy. Wormwood, the ingredient that gave vermouth its name (‘vermut’ in German), was once prescribed to cure stomach ailments; Gentian has similar medicinal purposes. Steeped in wine and fortified as vermouth, the bitter botanicals were believed to stimulate the palate, because the acid in the dry wine base kick-started salivation and, in turn, hunger.

Classic aperitif tipples include vermouth, Dubonnet, Kina Lillet (Lillet’s quinine-flavored, slightly bitter antecedent) and pastis or Absinthe. As it happens, all of these have potent and delicious application in cocktails. If it weren’t for vermouth, there would be no martini or Manhattan, of course. Without Absinthe or other anise liqueurs, how would you make a Sazerac? Aperitif-style beverages date back centuries in many cultures, but the practice of imbibing before gorging was particularly fashionable in Europe during the late 19th century, just as the cocktail was coming into its own.

As the cocktail enjoys a renaissance today, we think it’s only fair to give the aperitif another go. That’s why we’re planning to attend Brix by Night’s “Art of the Aperitif” class this Thursday. Tom Schlesinger-Guidelli will shake up cocktails made with modern classic liqueur St-Germain. Until then, we’ll conjure our appetites with one of these.

The Bohemian Cooler

1.5 oz. St. Germain

.75 oz. Old Overholt Rye

.75 oz. Lemon Juice.

Mount in a high ball, shake, add 2 oz. spicy ginger beer, add back ingredients and top with ice. No garnish.

Cin-cin!

The Art of the Aperitif will take place at Brix on Broad Thursday, August 12, 7 – 9 p.m. Tickets are $35 per person and include 5 cocktail tastes and traditional bar snacks. Space is limited. Call 617.542.2749, ext. 2 to make a reservation.

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*Recent ruminations from LUPEC Boston, originally published in the Dig.

by Pink Lady

LUPEC is fresh off the plane from Tales of the Cocktail, an annual convention for drink geeks in New Orleans, and after five straight days of imbibing, we sure are hungover. Back in the days before Prohibition, this situation called for one thing: a sour, a fizz, or really any style of morning brace up made with an egg.

Eggs are a contentious topic in many bars, which is why we were thrilled to attend the seminar entitled “The Egg-pire Strikes Back” last week. Work (or drink) in a craft cocktail bar long enough and you will inevitably hear a guest say: “Eggs in cocktails? Isn’t that dangerous? What about salmonella?”

Eggs have a long history as a cocktail ingredient. They were originally used as a substitute for milk in drinks and began to appear in recipes like the Morning Glory Fizz and the original recipe for the Sour in the 1880s.

Egg effectively works to bind the ingredients in the drink together, giving it a smooth, velvety texture. We’ve all been raised to fear salmonella, of course, but the bacteria takes about three to five weeks to develop, so using fresh eggs should keep you in a safety zone. It also targets the sick, the elderly and infants, most of whom shouldn’t be drinking anyway. And, in general, eggs have lower danger levels than lettuce.

Now, let’s get back to that morning brace up. People drank frequently in the days before Prohibition, which could of course lead to a bit of morning malaise. Before the Bloody Mary was even a twinkle in Pete Petiot’s eye, there was the Morning Glory Fizz. There are two ways to avoid a hangover: one is to never start drinking, the other is never stop. After stirring our souls and exhausting our livers at Tales of the Cocktail, I’m sure you know which one we’d choose.

Below, you’ll find Harry Johnson’s fizz recipe, about which he wrote: “The author respectfully recommends the above drink as an excellent one for a morning beverage, which will give a good appetite and quiet the nerves.” You heard the man. Bottoms up!

MORNING GLORY FIZZ

Harry Johnson’s recipe, adapted from Imbibe! by David Wondrich

0.75 tbsp sugar

0.5 oz lemon juice

0.25 oz lime juice

0.5 tsp absinthe dissolved well with a little water

egg white

2 oz Scotch whisky

Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker and dry shake for a few seconds. Add ice and shake, then strain into a highball. Top with soda water.

CIN-CIN! LUPECBOSTON.COM

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*Recent ruminations from LUPEC Boston, originally published in the Weekly Dig.

by Pink Lady + Hanky Panky

In honor of the anniversary of the birth of our nation, the ladies of LUPEC raise our glasses to the original first lady.

Regardless of party affiliation, most of us can agree that our very first president was a relatively stand-up guy, and his wife, Martha (to quote the stoner in Dazed and Confused), “was a hip, hip, hip lady.” And as a couple, George and Martha Washington knew how to party.

Martha took her entertaining duties as first lady very seriously. She hosted lavish parties at the then-capital cities of New York and Philadelphia, and the Washingtons’ estate, Mount Vernon. She wanted our nubile country and government to be on par with our European counterparts, and entertained in a similar formal style. Most of Martha’s affairs began with signature drinks served before dinner, which were likely made with spirits from Washington’s own distillery, one of the largest and most profitable during the colonial era.

According to the Mount Vernon Historical Society, George Washington favored sweet fortified wines like Madeira and port, and was also a fan of Rum Punch. So are we! Here’s Martha’s original recipe (from her notes).

MARTHA WASHINGTON’S RUM PUNCH

4 oz lemon juice
4 oz orange juice
4 oz simple syrup
3 lemons quartered
1 orange quartered
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
3 cinnamon sticks broken
6 cloves
12 oz boiling water

In a container, mash the lemons, orange, nutmeg, cinnamon sticks and cloves. Add syrup, lemon and orange juice. Pour the boiling water over the mixture. Let it cool. Strain out the solids. Heat the juice mixture to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Let it cool and refrigerate overnight.

In a punch bowl, combine:

3 parts juice mixture
1 part light rum
1 part dark rum
1/2 part orange curaçao

Serve the punch over ice. Top with grated nutmeg and cinnamon.

CIN-CIN!

For more stories on Presidential tippling, check out this post-election day post from Nov 2008.

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*Recent ruminations from LUPEC Boston, originally published in the Weekly Dig.

The Sidecar was a gateway cocktail for many of us LUPEC Boston gals, a drink that is not unlike the Manhattan and curiously still kicking in modern bars, despite its vintage roots.

Many will claim the Sidecar was invented in the 1920s at Harry’s New York Bar in Paris. According to one charming story, the bartender whipped this up to quench the thirst of a US Army captain, a regular who traveled to and from the bar via a motorcycle and needed a tipple to take off the winter chill. But savvy cocktailians will recognize this drink as little more than an evolved Brandy Crusta.

The Brandy Crusta was invented in the Crescent City by bartender Joe Santini, who took over at the New Orleans’ City Exchange in the 1850s. At the time, it was a unique blend of two different drinks—the “cocktail,” which was a short drink with bitters, and a “punch,” a long drink with citrus. Now, of course, we all drink “cocktails” much as we were all drinking “martinis” in the 1990s. But in those days, the category name had some relevance. The Crusta was enjoyed mostly locally, until Professor Jerry Thomas included instructions for how to mix it in his 1862 recipe book, The Bon Vivant’s Companion. By the 1890s, adding citrus to “cocktails” was de rigeur. Thirty years later, Crustas were out and Sidecars were in.

Father Knows Best at Fleming's

Father’s Day is this Sunday. Instead of gifting dad a pair of cufflinks or another boring tie, why not treat him to a classic cocktail, perhaps enjoyed with a nice beefy steak? They’re serving an American version of the classic Sidecar, made with Jack Daniels and Triple Sec, over at Fleming’s [217 Stuart St., Boston. 617.292.0808. $9.95. flemingssteakhouse.com] during Father’s Day brunch. You can order this drink, the “Father Knows Best,” or stick to the classic recipe with cognac and Cointreau, listed below. Either way, raise a glass this week to dear old dad.

CIN-CIN!

SIDECAR

As originally made, adapted from Vintage Spirits & Forgotten Cocktails by Ted Haigh

1 oz brandy

1 oz Cointreau

1 oz fresh lemon juice

Shake ingredients in an iced cocktail shaker. Strain into a chilled vintage cocktail glass. Serve with a sugar rim.

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