Cock 'n Bull Ginger Beer is one of those flavors that just won't leave my mind. There are many ginger beers on the market today. Some of them good, some great and some truly amazing. I've found that the Cock 'n Bull is a spicier ginger beer than most and it has a core of real ginger root.
There has been a resurgence for classic cocktails made with ginger beer, a nostalgic experience. Perhaps this is because drinkers enjoy the more robust flavors of ginger beer in combination with diverse liquors. I like mine not only with Rum in the classic 'Dark 'n Stormy' but also the smoky and spicy notes of Bourbon Whiskey mixed with ginger beer.
The Cock 'n Bull Ginger Beer has a venerable history that dates back long before many of the current day products were even thought of.
Jack Morgan was the owner of the restaurant in Los Angeles in the 1940's by the name of the Cock 'n Bull. He was the inventor of the historic drink named the Moscow Mule- which is no more than vodka and his namesake extra spicy, ginger beer.
Fast forward to current day. The Cock 'n Bull Ginger Beer is now available in multiple markets around the country. Cocktailians from all over are discovering the extreme ease when mixing Cockt 'n Bull with liquors as diverse as dark Rum, Scotch, Cognac, Irish Whiskey, and of course Bourbon!
I love Bourbon Whiskey mixed with Ginger Beer. Four Roses Small Batch Bourbon is one of my favorite go/to's for Bourbon that is heading for the cocktail shaker. The first thing I taste when sipping Four Roses straight is the sweet vanilla enrobed in cayenne pepper, tempered by lightly smoked peaches. There is definitely stone fruit in every sip of the Small Batch version.
Mixed with the Cock n' Bull Ginger Beer, the Four Roses Small Batch Bourbon adds dimension and character to every cocktail. I prefer my Roses and Ginger in a tall glass. And in keeping with my cocktailian persuits, I like to twist it up a bit. Keep it fresh and different.
Bitter End Bitters makes one such cocktail augmentation that I feel would just rock in this Bourbon/Ginger Beer cocktail. It is called the Mexican Mole Bitters. Laced with hot chilies, bittersweet chocolate and Southwestern herbs, each scant drop adds a hidden element that will fully reveal itself when combined with the other ingredients in the cocktail.
And in keeping with my cocktailian intellect, I've frozen these Bitter End Mexican Mole' Bitters into ice cubes made with water from my Mavea "Inspired Water" Pitcher. The water is inspired because of a proprietary formula to strip out the harmful elements of ordinary tap water and turn it (inspire) into a crisp, luscious glass of water.
The same holds true for ice. Ice made with water from my Mavea freezes almost crystal clear!
I've been adding different cocktail bitters into my ice. When the ice melts, the cocktail bitters become melded into the cocktail, augmenting the flavor and deepening it during the melting process.
While some cocktail chefs are experimenting with liquid nitrogen, I'm using a much less expensive method of freezing. Ice is my method, frozen for a couple of hours in the freezer.
Laced with the Bitter End Bitters- the drink becomes something otherworldly.
And that's why I make cocktails. To deepen my customer's sense of taste. Each taste is a living laboratory in each sip.
Four Roses Small Batch and Cock 'n Bull Ginger Beer
Freeze overnight or until absolutely firm
Add three "inspired water" ice cubes to a tall glass
Add 2 Oz. Four Roses Small Batch Bourbon
Add Cock 'n Bull Ginger Beer to top
Add a bit of fresh lime juice and a hunk of lime
Scrape some fresh nutmeg over the top (essential!)
Serve to an appreciative customer!
Danger level 3 out of 5..
If you want a stronger drink, then just add more Bourbon!
Warren Bobrow is the Food and Drink Editor of the 501c3 non profit Wild Table on Wild River Review located in Princeton, New Jersey.
He is one of 12 journalists world-wide, and the only one from the USA to participate in the Fête de la Gastronomie- the weekend of September 22nd. 2012 in Burgundy.
He attended Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans in 2011/2012.
Warren presented freestyle mixology at the International Food Bloggers Conference in Portland, Oregon. (2012)
Warren judged the Iron Mixology competition at the Charleston Wine and Food Festival (2012)
Warren has published over four hundred articles on everything from cocktail mixology to restaurant reviews to travel articles- globally.
You may also find him on the web at: http://www.cocktailwhisperer.com