Culinary ingredients are always fun when liquor comes into the fray.
I've taken a couple culinary ingredients that are especially vibrant in two cocktails of my own twisted invention on the eve of Fat Tuesday.
One of these ingredients is the humble tomato- of course we all know about the Bloody Mary- I am an absolute fanatic for Hoosier Momma- that is a given. Something about that tomato and intoxicating liquors.
Have you ever considered using Barbeque sauce for cocktails? Bourbon gives itself quite liberally to the tomato driven pleasures of barbeque sauce. There are dozens of Bourbon Barbeque sauces on the market. But no applications for Bourbon and Barbeque sauce in a cocktail. Hmmmmmm!
One of the very best, if not the very best barbecue sauces in America in my opinion is-
I love Slatherin' Sauce, especially the spicy version- for the tangy, tomato driven aroma and sweet hit of the spices- along with pineapple and honey. This “anything but traditional” barbeque sauce is a natural with Bourbon Whiskey, Rye or dare I say Mezcal. Of course you might only like barbeque sauce on ribs, that’s why I’ve included the aromatic, pepper driven Bitter End Memphis Barbeque Bitters into this “hard to define, harder to forget” cocktail named the:
Fort Sumter Cocktail.
Toasted Apricots (just a couple or a Tablespoon of Apricot jam)
2 Shots Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey
2 Tablespoons Slatherin' Sauce
2 Drops Memphis Barbeque Bitters from Bitter End Bitters
In a sauté pan heated to almost smoking hot, char about ½ cup pineapple chunks until well browned
Muddle pineapple and apricots (or jam) in a mixing glass
Add 2 Shots of Bourbon or Rye Whiskey (if you want a smokier drink, use Mezcal)
Add a handful of ice
Add 2 Tablespoons of Slatherin' Sauce
Shake and strain into a tall rocks glass and finish with Perrier
Garnish with a hunk of seared pineapple and exactly two drops (NO MORE) of the Memphis Barbecue Bitters
Imbibe and toast the sons of the Confederacy and the Union who fell at Ft. Sumter!
Coconut water is one of those culinary ingredients that have flourished in recent years for not only the health benefits, but also for the mysterious flavor. Last night, in a tip of the hat to the Absinthe master distiller T.A. Breaux- and for the upcoming Fat Tuesday parties that invariably will end at the strike of midnight on the day known as Ash Wednesday, I’ve taken coconut water and added it to an ice cube tray freezing it into cubes. The Nouvelle-Orléans Absinthe Supérieure is my go/to for this coconut water dream of a cocktail.
Simplicity is the key here.
The Strike of Midnight Cocktail
(named for the end of the party on Fat Tuesday)
2 Shots of Nouvelle-Orléans Absinthe Supérieure
(I use a 4-1 ratio of coconut water to Absinthe)
4 Shots of unsweetened coconut water
Perrier splash for fizz
Slowly drip the four shots of coconut water over 2 Shots of Nouvelle-Orléans Absinthe Supérieure
Add a couple of coconut water ice cubes
Add a couple quick splashes of Perrier water to finish and sip very carefully and with great reverence.
The party will end soon- hopefully you will still be able to stand up and take notice!
Leica M8/Summicron F2 50mm. Photograph and article by: Warren Bobrow- cocktail whisperer