Saturday, August 30, 2008

Ring for another Round

My mom gave me this for a 32nd birthday present. She found it at Dot's junk shop in Centre, AL. She mentioned there was a box full of these for sale. They are all in their original boxes. Wow what a crazy piece of history. I looked on e-bay and one was for sale for 8 dollars that had been apparently sold in Lake Tahoe, it had some Lake tahoe stickers added to it. I think it's nifty. My daughter thinks it's musical. I'm not going to even dare use the bottle opener, I'll probably break it into splinters... I think the box is great, Mom thinks these came from Oriental Trading Company a few years back, as it was made in Taiwan, Republic of China, the sticker says.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Island Prayer

Island Prayer (blessing to calm a storm)
1 part Domaine de Canton Ginger Liqueur
2 parts Appleton Jamaican Rum
2 teaspoons Orange Blossom Honey
Juice of 1/4 of a Lime
splash of Pineapple juice

Add all ingredients to a pint glass full of ice. Cap and shake until well chilled. Strain into a chilled Martini glass. Garnish with an orange ribbon twist and thin half moon lime slice, floating.

I've created this drink for the many island and coastal communities that have been affected by tropical weather. Living on a barrier island off the east coast of Florida, I have had the fortune of survival through these storms. I intended for it to be a fresh, pure, and simple recipe to make quickly. May the powers that be have mercy. As I create, Jamaica and beyond are in weather's path.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Put the lime down, lemon with my Tequila, please.

I love blanco tequila.

I prefer blanco tequila because I can taste the product not the aging process. ( I do not have a favorite liquor, there are so many possibilities, no need to limit my taste buds. )

I adore Partida's Blanco Tequila. The history of it, of how a woman saw a bird fluttering around a sacred plant. A hole the bird had made in the plant enticed her to cut a hole in it only to find a medicinal drink for her people. The ancient volcanic soil, perfect pinas, and the sweet honey after taste even all by itself is a real treat for me.

Lemonada para ti

1 1/4 oz. Partida Blanco Tequila
3/4 oz. Amalfi Coast Limoncello
4 Basil Leaves
2 lemon wedges
2 sugar cubes
splash of Soda Water

In a pint glass add Limoncello, lemon wedges, sugar cubes and basil. Muddle gently. Fill with cubed ice and add tequila. Cap and shake until 2 oz of water is added to contents. Pour total contents into a Tall Collins glass and top with soda water. Garnish with a lemon wedge and petite basil leave. Can you hear the breeze?

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Why we drink

I've seen this in other blogs and the question is for the individual. If you are needing a more in depth, clear cut answer. Check this out...

I found it quite fun.

and a new recipe:

Calmer Seas

1 oz. Dark rum
1/2 oz. Strega
4 Mango cubes
2 oz. lemon juice

In a pint add mango cubes and lemon juice. Muddle till blended. Fill with ice. Add Rum and Strega. Cap and shake till very cold. Strain in to a chilled Cocktail glass. Lemon twist or curl for garnish.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Mango Mojito (no sugar)

My favorite lately has to be the Mango Mojito 86 the sugar. I know, "No sugar?". Yes, no sugar, no cane, no simple syrup, no splenda, no equal. The flavored rum is sweet enough. This is an easy recipe anyone can make. It requires no fat washing or flames. I tend to like to make things easy for the masses to make or to make for the masses.

Mango Mojito

2 oz fresh squeezed lime juice
6-10 fresh mint leaves ( I prefer pineapple mint)
2 oz Mango rum ( I use Cruzan)
splash of soda water

In a pint glass add lime juice and mint and muddle gently. Fill with ice and add rum. Cap and shake till your hand is frozen. You need to make 2 oz of water melt off ice. Pour in tall slender Collins glass if available. and splash with soda. Garnish with a lime slice and mint sprig.

Lemango Variable (for those needing more tasks)

1/2 inch slice of lemongrass
6-10 pineapple mint sprigs
2 oz mango rum
Dash of angostura bitters
crushed ice

In a pint glass muddle lemongrass vigorously and mint leaves and muddle gently again. Add cubed ice, bitters, and rum. Cap and shake till 2 oz of water are added from ice. Strain into a tall Collins glass filled 3/4 with crushed ice. Tiny mango slice and switch of lemongrass leaf for garnish.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Fay, for yet another day...

So we have been dealing with the non stop rain from tropical storm Fay since Monday evening. We have had 26 inches of rain on the barrier island. We have been lucky and have had power and no damage. The hotel I work at has suffered some water damage (again). However I was stuck with only beer and wine to "play " with. I have thought up a few recipes I need to try out when I get to the store I'll work on this. I love being creative with drink names and using themes to build drinks around. Here are some of my newest drink ideas:

Flood water
This drink has to be brown and opaque and made with rum. I'm thinking some cranberry and OJ to get the brown. Keep in mind the ingredients have to be the things you would have around the kitchen in most households during a flood.


I'm thinking bourbon (or maybe SoCo) this time and cranberry and OJ and lime on the rocks.

I have been growing Campari tomatoes from seeds since May and I have 5 ginormous plants that I have been caring for. They had to be evacuated before the storm to higher , more sheltered ground , my back porch. On the 2nd day of Fay I found 2 monster tomato hornworm caterpillars munching on the remnants of 2 plants!!!! They ate 2 tomatoes and 15 or so leaves. I removed them in to the bug zoo fro the kids to view and hours later they chewed through the plastic mesh and made a slither for it. I hope they got sick! So this drink must be...

the Caterpillar

Tomato juice and spiced rum (try it, it's yum!) and fresh dill (it's green)a splash of OJ and Tabasco green sauce floated on top. Some celery, olives, and capers for garnishing.

One of favorite drink name games to play involves thinking of movies and using the Movie titles as names and being creative with ingredients.

For example:

layered (use the force Luke) in a pousse cafe glass

3/4 oz midori (yoda is green)

3/4 oz Irish cream ( the movie was made in the 70's, hello!)

3/4 oz Frenet Branca ( that is the dark side)

This may or may not be good. That's the fun of the game you don't have to make the drink unless it sounds great and or someone wants to. This was played for hours one evening at my bar and involved 8 customers and 2 bartenders on a slow rainy evening. We all had a bunch of fun coming up with good and bad drinks for good and bad movie titles. At least politics, religion, and war stories were not involved.

Friday, August 15, 2008

How does it measure up?

I have poured spirits with many different measuring devices at various jobs.

My experience is with:

  • Standard jigger 1 1/4 oz
  • pony jigger 1 oz.
  • measure jigger 1 1/2 ounce
  • tapered end metal pour spout
  • square or box nosed metal pour spout
  • one ball 1 1/4 oz regulated pour spout
  • two ball 11/4 oz reg. pour spout
  • various plastic pour spouts that measure similar to metal spouts

I prefer to free pour as opposed to be measured. I practice my pours before every shift on both left and right hand with an exacto pour measuring test. from 1/4 oz to 2 oz. in 1/4 oz measures. Each place I've worked uses a different system and I always use their method of measuring. I find however free pouring by the above mentioned method will make you precise. A jigger will only make an improper measure, a waste, or a mess (unless of couse you are pouring a spirit bottle that can fit no spout).
I take pride in having no extra for my guests. It is science to me. Recipes are made to be exact unless you are forming a new one. So I was very excited when my management celebrated with me in being the only employee 20 years of their experience to free pour with various pour spouts for a 3 month period and from starting counts to ending counts be spot on the money!
I am curious how others measure and their experiences. Please share. How do you pour?

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Float to Freeport in the Nude

I've attempted to crack open a few coconuts from a local tree lately and each one has been rotten. I'll keep working on it. I found this interesting tidbit on youtube about how to crack coconuts that I'll include. I've also done some recipe searching and found a few that have helped me concoct a new one. First, here's a good simple basic recipe for pina colada mix that you can make by the glass. You will need:

  • One can of Coco Lopez or the like (shake the sense into it so it's mixed good)

  • One squirt bottle that you can pour the Coco Lopez into

  • Pineapple juice

  • Orange juice

  • Half and half

  • Cinnamon

  • Nutmeg

In a pint glass for a drink on the rocks or a blender cup for a brain freeze:

  • One heavy squirt of Coco Lopez ( don't forget to shake it baby)

  • 1/2 ounce Pineapple juice

  • 1/2 ounce OJ

  • 1/2 ounce Half and half

  • Dash cinnamon

  • Dash nutmeg

Add ice and liquor if you like or milk or more juice for a N/A treat. Don't for get to cap and shake 'til ingredients are smooth or blend with ice 'til frosty.

Float to Freeport in the Nude

  • 2 ounces of above mentioned Pina colada mix

  • 2 ounces Spiced Rum (you choose, it's your money)

  • 4 dashes Angostura Bitters (easy to find)

Build in a pint with ice starting with pina colada base first. Add Spiced rum and bitters. Shake until ingredients are smooth. The color should be a somewhat "nude" color. Strain into a plastic drinking glass (cocktail preferably) so you don't drop it on the deck and get ice in your heel. The plastic will hold some chill better than glass in 94 degree F heat as well. Get in the pool and drink it on ice if you need. You're drinking it not me. ( I may have to try tweaking this one for frozen brainfreeze as well.)

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Casino Night at the Melbourne Beach Hilton

This week I had the chance to become familiar with some sales people working for Northrop Grumman. I had the pleasure of bartending for them 3 evenings out of 4. The last was Casino night for fun with 6 different game tables. I am always amazed how people will come out of their shells after only a few sessions. I'll leave you with a picture of baby boomers doing the cabbage patch and the sprinkler after some well made gin martinis and a lesson or two on vodka and how to choose from my small selection.

Which brings me to a thought about the difference in work environments from the last job I held and the one I hold now.

Former Job at Mainstreet Pub

  • Had lots of "regulars". I enjoyed most of them most of the time.

  • Had a huge range of spirits, beers, wines, fresh fruit, and tools for making anything your heart desired.

  • Very late hours. The last two hours being the busiest. (after standing around trying to remain focused and paced being thrown into a fast paced environment is tricky.)

  • Very reasonable priced product.

Present Job at the Melbourne Beach Oceanfront Hilton

  • Usually only have the pleasure of meeting people once or twice.

  • Very minimal bar. (2 or 3 choices maximum for each spirit, beer or wine)

  • Usually home before midnight and my schedule depends on what is booked.

  • Very overpriced extremely regulated (2 ball pourers) product.

It looks like from my list each job is 2 good for 2 not so good entries. Hopefully, I will find a way to bring out more good qualities with this new job. I'll leave you with this.

I will gladly watch responsible adults do the robot after some overpriced best I can do martinis as opposed to some hapless 21 year old trying to pick up hot chicks with daddy's money and 13 misunderstood mojitos.

Did I mention I can usually see the Atlantic Ocean from where I make drinks at the Hilton?

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

After some gentle advice from a newfound friend and mentor, I have started this. In order to bring luck and order, some words I read last night in my most recently aquired, and now oldest cocktail book in my growing collection.


For All Good Fellows Who Will Not Drink Alone

Here's to Woman - the fairest work of the great author. The edition is large, and no man should be without a copy.

May the best day we have seen be the worst that is to come.

Drink and the world drinks with you, Swear off and you drink alone. (Seen before but I love it!)

From Charles Delmonico's

Punches and Cocktails

New and revised edition 1934