Thursday, November 29, 2012

Granny Apple Flip

In this post, we will teach you how to do a simple fruit maceration. A maceration is a breakdown of fruit through the use of sugar, salt, or liquid or, in this case, all three. So, grab some Granny Smith apples and get to it!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Berry My Daddy

Among the best things that happened to Wisconsin liquor stores in 2012 were the arrival of Catdaddy and the reintroduction of Revel Stoke to the shelves. Here we will bring two of our favorites, Catdaddy Moonshine (from our Catdaddy Express post from April of 2011) and chokeberry syrup, to the party to create a holiday drink of some distinction.

Friday, November 16, 2012

False Vineyard

So Cindy and I were at Maduro’s in Madison over the summer, enjoying their signature cocktails (a Monk’s Summer for her, a Bird of Omen for me) when I spied a bottle of liquor that was new to me. When I asked the bartender for a closer look, he handed me a glass and poured a bit of the bronze-orange liqueur into it. It was Pierre Ferrand dry curacao, resurrected from a 19th-century recipe from Pierre Ferrand proprietor Alexandre Gabriel and legendary spirit historian David Wondrich. Unlike the saccharine orange syrup that passes for curacao today, Ferrand’s version is wonderfully full of orange peel and dry spice with a bit of bitterness on the end, perhaps like biting into a fresh orange peel in the tropics. I bought my first bottle this fall; it was gone before the break of the next day. It is great alone, but is indispensable in classic cocktails that call for orange curacao or triple sec.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Bloody Skeleton

Our next feature drink contains a gin that most Americans have never experienced, genever gin. The version of genever we are using is Bols which is now on the U.S. market. Made from a distillation of 60% malt wine with herbs such as anise, angelica, and coriander, Bols genever is malty with a hint of pear and other fruits not unlike Irish poteen (Irish potato moonshine). Using a secret recipe from 1820, Bols genever is only made in the Netherlands and its secret distillate ingredient is fiercely hush-hush.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Princess of Darkness

It is high time we introduced the world to the best fruit in the world to mix with: the chokeberry. A superfood of the first order, the chokeberry is high in vitamin C and antioxidants, beneficial in combating a wide range of maladies including cancers, cardiovascular disease, chronic inflammation, peptic ulcer, eye inflammation, and, most important to us at the FWL, liver failure. In addition, the chokeberry is rich in tannins which add a blast of late dryness to the palate (hence their names). Once in syrup, the chokeberry delivers a three tier punch of awesomeness- the taste is among the very best berry flavors you’ve had, the astringency of its touch conveys the after-effect of deep dryness, and the color is a glorious shade of dark red velvet.