Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Flushing Meadows Highball and Others

Though I went to Chicago this past weekend to attend the Godzilla/Kaiju themed convention known as G-Fest XX, I tried to find some moments of peace where I could enjoy a nice cocktail or two. Since I was with my son, I didn’t indulge as much as I probably would have had I made the trip on my own. But I was able to find some time. For more information on day one of my trip, click on the link for my blogpost In Chicago and Illinois Part I from my other blog Observations and Rants of a Native New Yorker.

I didn’t wait to leave New York City before having my first cocktail. At the Delta Shuttle terminal there is a small bar that makes some interesting cocktails for the travelers. One of which that I ordered was the Flushing Meadows Highball. Named after the park, which hosted the 1939-1940 and 1964 World’s Fairs, Home to the U.S. Open for Tennis and the New York Mets, this cocktail was one that I expected to be sweet but was actually milder than I expected.

Here is what is in the cocktail:
Flushing Meadows Highball
Ginger Beer
I expected the Ginger Beer to give it a little sweet kick but found that the flavor of the mint and the cucumber overpowered the ginger beer. It was very smooth and mild. Just what I needed to take the slight edge off of flying.

As we were in flight, I was flipping through the Delta Sky Magazine that is provided on the plane, I found the recipe for an interesting cocktail known as The Pachamama. As you can see in the picture, the Pachamama was created at the MC Kitchen, which is located in Miami and according to the beverage director Marcus Wade:
The Pachamama is inspired by the Peruvian traditional corn beer called Chichi
Here is the recipe as listed in the magazine:
Cool down in style this summer with this Peruvian-inspired, sun-kissed cocktail courtesy of Miami’s buzzy MC Kitchen.

2 oz. Florida sweet corn kernels
1 large whole strawberry
Dash of oregano
2 oz. molle berry Aya
1 ½ oz. Pisco Capurro
1 ½ oz. Verjus soda

Combine and muddle the Florida sweet corn kernels, strawberry, oregano and molle berry Aya. Add Pisco Capurro and Verjus soda and shake with ice. Strain and serve.
This sounds like an amazing cocktail to try.

It wasn’t until dinner that I decided to have a second cocktail for the day. This time we went to the Pickwick Restaurant in Park Ridge, Illinois. Now the Pickwick Restaurant is an old school restaurant/diner that had very friendly service and is located right next to the Pickwick Theater. We were waiting for the Kaiju movie double feature to start and I noticed that they served cocktails. After looking at the prices, how could I say no to ordered something. I decided to order a Strawberry Margarita. Since they had to blend it, I didn’t feel like making the hostess/bartender work any more than she needed to, I instead changed my order to a regular Margarita. Now I felt as if I was at Dallas BBQ with the Margarita that was served to me in a goblet. And all for $4.95!!!!! It was a simple and basic margarita served nice and cold. It was the perfect drink to have before sitting through almost seven hours of movies.

The next post will highlight the two cocktails that I had at the hotel bar known as the Visibility Bar.

Until Then Happy Drinking,
Sisco Vanilla

Thursday, July 11, 2013

The Rampart

Since I referenced Jack Daniel's Honey in my last post The Lemon Stag, it provides the perfect segue into this cocktail The Rampart. This past 4th of July, one of our regulars Joel asked me to make him a specialty cocktail. Now Joel loves doing chilled shots of Jack Daniel's Honey (ugh) so I decided to come up with a cocktail containing Honey Jack. Here is what I came up with:
The Rampart
2oz (60ml) Jack Daniel's Honey
.5oz (15ml) Grand Marnier
.5oz (15ml) Fresh Lime Juice
Club Soda

In an ice filled pint glass, build Jack Daniel's Honey, Grand Marnier and Fresh Lime Juice. Shake and top with club soda.
I was looking for something refreshing, akin to a Collins-type cocktail. As you can see by my comment above, I'm not a particular fan of the Jack Daniel's Honey but blended with the Grand Marnier, Lime Juice and the club soda it was quite pleasurable. Very refreshing on a hot summer's night.

Where did the name come from? I asked Joel to name the cocktail and since it was the 4th of July, he decided to call it the Rampart in honor of the fireworks up above. And for the record, he liked it. Thanks Joel.

So there you have it. Enjoy the Rampart if you get the chance.

Until Then Happy Drinking,
Sisco Vanilla

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

The Lemon Stag

I decided to tap one of the many little "airplane" bottles of booze that I have sitting on my shelf and the one that stood out to me was the Jim Beam Red Stag Honey Tea bourbon. According to the Jim Beam website:
Through a special infusion process, our distillers start with our fine Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey and then infuse it with natural flavors. The result is the distinctive taste of Jim Beam® complemented with hints of honey tea, truly A Different Breed of Bourbon™. Sometimes the uncharted path delivers the greatest rewards.

Red Stag by Jim Beam® bourbon’s smooth, well-rounded taste is delicious mixed, over ice or straight up.
In terms of its flavor profile:
A smooth whiskey that features the flavors of two southern classics: honey and tea.
Taste: Corn and mellow oak notes mixed with a hint of honey and tea
Finish: Smooth and warm
I like it. Its not cloyingly sweet as the Jack Daniel's Honey is. You can still taste the Jim Beam bourbon pop through the sweet flavor of the Honey Tea. It actually has a little spiciness. This bourbon is 40% alc./vol. (80 Proof).

Since I yesterday made myself an Adult Arnold Palmer (Seagrams Sweet Tea Vodka and Lemonade), I decided to do a variation of the cocktail with the Red Stag Honey Tea, Lemonade and Seltzer Water. Here is what I came up with:
The Lemon Stag
2oz (50ml) Jim Beam Red Stag Honey Tea bourbon
4oz (100ml) Homemade Lemonade
4oz (100ml) Seltzer Water

Build in a glass with one large ice cube, stir lightly.
I found the cocktail to be very light with a subtle tartness from the lemonade mixing with the light sweetness of the Red Stag. The seltzer water gave it a small amount of effervescence. With the temperatures reaching close to 100 degrees here in NYC, this light and refreshing cocktail is just what I need to keep cool.

I highly recommend you give it a try.

Until Then Happy Drinking,
Sisco Vanilla

Monday, July 1, 2013

Paloma Kick at Cowgirl Seahorse

The Bleecker Street Bar family had the rare night together last week in celebrating Alice's going away dinner at Cowgirl Seahorse last week. If you've never been to Cowgirl Seahorse, they are a cajun and southern fare restaurant which is located way down in lower Manhattan in an area that was devastated by Superstorm Sandy last October. With classic lower Manhattan bars and restaurants like the Bridge Cafe and the Paris Cafe closed due to the damage caused by Sandy, it is good to see a vibrant place like Cowgirl Seahorse up and running.

In terms of cocktails, Cowgirl has a very diverse cocktail menu and one particular cocktail stood out to me. I decided to try the Paloma Kick. Here is how it is made:
Paloma Kick
Tanteo Jalapeño Tequila
Fresh Lime Juice
Fresh Grapefruit
I've had the Tanteo Jalapeño tequila before during my excursions to Bailey's when Pete is bartending. The tequila has a nice little kick to it and I found that it was balanced nicely by the other ingredients. It had a nice sweet and spicy flavor profile. I like how it is served in a mason jar with a handle, which made Melvin jealous since his cocktail had a handle-less mason jar. Heidi ordered one after I let her taste mine and her's came back tasting differently. It seemed like it was missing the sweetness part of it. So to be honest, I'm not sure which one was the official Paloma Kick, but I have to say that I believe mine was. I liked it.

The Bleecker Street Bar Family
Alice and Justin, we wish you the best of luck in your new business and family endeavors. As for me, I look forward to making another trip out west to see you in Northern California. Good luck and much love to you both.

Until Then Happy Drinking,
Sisco Vanilla