Sunday, February 26, 2012

A fitting end to a great weekend

Well, this weekend has been one of the best in a long while.  Aside from not getting my tax information organized and submitted like I meant, the weekend was just about perfect.

Friday I got to take my kids to Town Lake and bop around, have lunch with Everett and the kids, and have a relaxing evening at home.  Saturday was also very relaxing, with some errands run, and then off to Uchiko for a celebration of a friend's birthday.  We saw chef Paul Qui, finalist on Top Chef, and enjoyed his culinary creations.  It was fantastic.  We enjoyed the orange vodka/vanilla vodka/prosecco drink after dinner.  Yum.

Sunday was also fun, with a late afternoon cocktail party.  I tried a new cocktail, the recipe sent to me by my Aunt who lives in Santa Rosa.  Apparently a restaurant in her neighborhood came up with some Oscar night cocktails, they sounded intriguing.  We made the following, with some substitutions (in parentheses).  It was a lovely drink, the thyme really gives it an earthy flavor, and the bubbles give it the heavenly mouth feel.  The grapefruit was a nice tart but sweet component.  It was named "The Clooney".

1 1/2 oz vodka
3/4 oz fresh squeezed grapefruit juice
sprigs of fresh thyme
a few dashes of grapefruit bitters (blood orange bitters)
Roederer brut (La Marca Prosecco)
grapefruit twist

In a shaker, muddle thyme with bitters.  Add vodka and juice.  Add ice and shake, strain into cocktail glass.  Add floater of sparkling wine.  Garnish with grapefruit twist (and thyme sprig).

Because this was a party, and my phone/camera was providing the music, I did not snap a photo.  But it is a pale coral/pink color that is slightly turbid.  Very attractive.

The second cocktail recipe that was sent to me was called the Dragon Girl, named for Lisbeth Salander from the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.  It had rye, vermouth, cherry Heering and some other ingredients.  I did not make this particular drink for time sake, but it did lead me to do a bit of research on Cherry Heering.  I had never heard of it, but I did have some Kirsch in my cabinet, so I wanted to know if the Kirsch was an acceptable substitute for the Heering (it is not).  Both are considered cherry brandies, but the Kirsch is a dry liqueur, often drank neat (I have not) that is colorless.  The Heering is a sweeter liqueur and has a dark color to it.  I wondered if my failure to get the exact sour cherry margarita flavor I wanted was due to using just the Kirsch in my mix, and that would certainly explain the improvement in flavor when I used a little agave.  So, I acquired some Cherry Heering, and the result was quite delectable.  I fine tuned the sour cherry margarita again, and I think I may have the true winner here!

1 oz tequila
1/2 oz Kirsch
1/2 Cherry Heering
1 oz Cointreau or some other orange liqueur
juice of 1/2 lime and 1/2 lemon

Shake on ice, pour on the rocks - salted rim optional.

This was outstanding, if I do say so myself!

More to come in the following weeks:  we still have many variations on the martini - I just bought some Genevieve Genever by Anchor Brewing;  as well as Pisco, Cachaca, more Tequila drinks, and the list goes on......!

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