Tag Archives: grapefruit soda

Cocktails O’clock: The Shady Lady

No need to find the shade, she’ll come to you…

There are only so many ‘new’ cocktails available online, before they start becoming similar to cocktails I’ve already posted about. To try and dilute this pool of great flavours I have called upon the aid of two (2) of my most treasured cocktail books.

One of which, New Classic Cocktails (by Gary Regan & Mardee Haidin Regan) a great book I bought after it was recommended on an episode of Robert Hess’ The Cocktail Spirit. It’s a great little book, filled with some of the more obscure cocktails from around the world.

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New classic cocktails, by Gray & Mardee Regan…

The other, is a book extremely close to my heart: ‘365 cocktails by Brian Lucas’ – the first ever cocktail book I ever bought. Ever since I bought it, it’s been an essential part of my library and is a go to book in when I’m looking for inspiration.

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365 Cocktails: a genuinely superb cocktail bible by Brian Lucas…

So I’ll be sharing the wealth, and supplying some of the cocktails from my first cocktail book, intermingled with some from the other book (and of course I’ll also be using those from the internet and my own brain).

Let’s start with one of my favourites…

The Shady Lady

1 measure Tequila Blanco

1 measure Midori

4 measures Grapefruit Juice

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The Shady Lady cocktail: simply one of the best Tequila cocktails I’ve ever had the pleasure of enjoying…

Method:

1)      Build the ingredients over ice in a sling glass.

2)      Garnish with a lime wheel and maraschino cherry.

3)      Serve with straws.

This cocktail is a slightly refreshing tequila cocktail, more so because of the melon liqueur. If melon is not your thing then try out different liqueurs, but try to keep away from citrus flavours if you can help it (the grapefruit juice supplies all the citrus you’ll need).

For an added melon kick, in the above recipe at least, muddle 2-5 chunks of honeydew melon in a shaker tin. Then shake the ingredients over ice with the melon and strain into the glass. Garnish the same way.

If you like your drink a little more bubbly; then replace 1.5measures of the grapefruit juice with grapefruit soda. It will lighten the drink some more and also spritz it up a little.

This truly is one of my favourite Tequila cocktails, and one that will go down a storm at any party or BBQ you plan on having in the next few weeks. Quick whilst the sun is still high!

Remember Tequila is a wonderful spirit, but like all free spirits the minute you disrespect it, it will punish you, so do drink responsibly…

Cocktails O’Clock: Campari Flamingo

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Ok, so one of my rather sad pastimes is perusing the internet for new and innovative cocktails, new bars in my local area and literally anything to do with cocktails in the UK (and to be honest I don’t usually stop at the UK, but it’s a good start). Now recently this pastime has led me to uncover what I feel are great summer cocktails, and they are cocktails either not being served locally or just unheard of by people I speak to.

Whether you want a long refreshing fizzy aide to your evening or a shorter more refined flavour experiment, there’s a summer cocktail for you. Like Rum, Vodka, Tequila or Gin? Well you’re in luck, just follow the links for 10 of the best summer cocktails, using those spirits, you’ll ever try.

For the here and now, this great pink cocktail is rather refreshing and a perfect strong arm for all you ladies out there…

The Campari Flamingo

¾ measures Fresh Squeezed Lime Juice

1 ½ measures aged rum*

½ measure Campari

3 measures Grapefruit SodaT

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Pretty in Pink: The Campari Flamingo – Picture & Recipe from http://www.seriouseats.com/

Method:

1)      Fill a shaker with ice, and pour in the Rum, Campari and Lime juice.

2)      Shake well & strain into an ice-filled rocks glass.

3)      Top up with the grapefruit soda and garnish with a lime wedge and grapefruit twist.

Top Tip: The best rum for this sort of cocktail is one full of flavour, try Appleton Estate, or Chairman’s Reserve for the best results. But ultimately, like any cocktail, just use your favourite rum, and you’ll get a great drink.

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A great example of a great aged rum…

*The term ‘Anejo’ is Spanish for aged (and Reposado the Spanish for rested). Anejo Rum is rum that is aged by (generally) leaving it in sealed barrels over a period of time. 5 year old rums have been aged for 5 years and 7yo for 7 (it really is that simple). For best results and ease of purchase, look for the golden/dark rums as aging of spirits like this commonly results in the golden/black hues of the spirit.

T Grapefruit Soda is a great flavoured fizzy drink, but if you like your soda a little more natural why not take a leaf out of Phillip Ward’s book and check out this great alternative using soda water, fresh grapefruit juice and sugar syrup: Phillip Ward’s Paloma Recipe…

So as you can see this cocktail is a great summery drink, with the crisp refreshing tastes of citrus and the bitter taste of Campari. The soda just lightens the drink up a bit to make it a truly refreshing summer spritzer.

Great for BBQ’s, summer garden parties, and; due to the ease of which it can be scaled up to a punch sized volume, it even suits house parties (should the mood take you).

This drink should be on your ‘to try’ list if only as you finally have a drink other than the 3 basic (and rather classic) Campari cocktails everyone knows about… Hopefully this leads you to try this wonderful spirit and how it can blend well with other spirits, but also other flavours allowing you to experiment and come up with new and wonderful drinks yourselves.

Enjoy it and, as always, drink responsibly folks! 70cl of Campari can go a long way if you treat it right. Worth the £15 odd you will shell out for it.

Best chance for purchasing a bottle near you is:

Asda, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Morrison’s, Aldi, Lidl, and if all else fails try online at: the great WhiskyExchange OR the ever reliable TheDrinkShop.

Drink up me’ hearties yo-ho!

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Some great summer cocktails (via the Whisky Exchange)

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Relax, sit back and sip on one of these glorious cocktails…

There are some great cocktails out there that are perfect for summer. Here are a few courtesy of the whisky exchange.

Classic American Whisky (or Whiskey) Sour

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An American Classic, shown on the hit show Mad Men, this truly is a fantastic cocktail…

 

Recipe:

1 measure Bourbon whisky

1 measure Sweet & sour mix (a mixture of Lemon & Lime Juice)

½ measure Sugar Syrup

1 dash Angostura Bitters

Method:

1)      Shake well over ice and strain into glass over fresh ice cube.

2)      Garnish with a maraschino cherry.

For a slightly frothier drink dry shake and egg white with the ingredients and then shake over ice too cool. Then strain like normal.

Mizuwari

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A great whisky cocktail, watering down this aged whisky (Nikka) allows one to savour the truly robust collection of flavours…

Recipe:

50ml Nikka ‘from the barrel’

150ml Spring Water

Method:

1)      Stack large cubed ice cubes in a tall glass.

2)      Lay in the Nikka Whisky

3)      Then top up with the 150ml water.

4)      Stir around 10-14 times.

5)      Taste and adjust water (add more) if required.

Mango Cooler

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Smooth & Fruity this cocktail is a tropical explosion…

 

Recipe:

50ml Kingston Mango Liqueur

100ml Lemonade

Method:

1)      Pack the glass with crushed ice.

2)      Pour over the Mango Liqueur and lemonade, stir well.

3)      Garnish with some red berries (cherries, raspberries, red currents all work well).

Kingston also make a Red a Curacao which works just as well in this drink – although you end up with a drink that’s more citrus than mango…

1980’s Classic Pina Colada

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The ultimate Tiki beach cocktail. Enjoy it. I know I will!

 

Recipe:

50ml Pampero Blanco Rum

50ml Coco Real cream of coconut

100ml fresh pineapple juice (fresher the better)

Method:

1)      If you have a blender then blend all the above ingredients with a mixer glass worth of ice. If you don’t have a blender, then shake the mixture really hard with a little less ice.

2)      Serve with a slice of pineapple and a maraschino cherry.

 

Paloma

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Traditional Mexican Cocktail technique at its finest…

 

Recipe:

50ml Tapatio Blanco Tequila

150ml Grapefruit Soda

Method:

1)      Fill a glass with ice and pour in the Tequila.

2)      Top up with the soda and garnish with a lime wedge.

For an added splash of citrus, try adding in 12.5ml – 25ml Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice. This will cut through the Tequila a bit, should you find it a little too strong.

A Fancy G&T

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Adding the Chartreuse doses you with an extremely rich, strong and flavourful version of this British Classic…

 

Recipe:

2 measures Gin

Top up Tonic Water

5-15ml Green Chartreuse

Method:

1)      Make up your G&T like normal;

  1. Over ice, build the ingredients.

2)      Then float the Green Chartreuse (the amount is to your taste) on top of the drink.

3)      Enjoy your luxurious G&T.

Sea Breeze

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A twist on a Classic…

 

Recipe:

25ml Absolut Vodka

25ml Grapefruit Juice

75ml Cranberry Juice

Method:

1)      In an ice filled glass, build the ingredients one by one.

2)      Stir it briefly and garnish with a lime wedge*.

Give the lime wedge a little squeeze to dump the juice in the drink before dropping the wedge in on top. Quickly stir again and you have a slightly more apparent citrusy hit in your drink.

All the ingredients for these drinks, as well as original pictures and recipes can be found on the Whisky Exchange’s website. They offer a competitive, yet affordable price on almost every product they sell, and honestly, some of the products you cannot get anywhere else. Not here in the UK anyway!

For all non-alcoholic ingredients, as well as some slightly cheaper store-brand alcohol you can check out your local supermarkets.

TheWhiskyExchange  has had no involvement in this post. This is a post I made to share what I feel is one of the best websites out there for cocktail ingredients.

A quick trip to Sainsbury’s – 2 hours & £35 later…

So I needed to top up on the ‘extras’ for my cocktails (the sugar syrup, fresh fruit, fruit sodas and other weird and wonderful things) and the best way to do that? Shopping trip! Now some of the things can be expensive (like Hibiscus flowers – 11 of them in syrup can cost anywhere from £9-£20 depending on where you find them), whilst others can be cheap and cheerful.

Take the fresh fruit I got today; 4 Oranges or a punnet of strawberries £2 each or 2 packs for £3, so obviously I saved there by getting one of each. Agave Nectar was relatively cheap for what it is at £2.50 and even the Espresso Coffee Beans were on offer at £2… So really I save quite a bit today. I fact almost everything I bought on this trip happened to be on offer. Even the Pomegranate juice was on an introductory offer (a bit weird as they’ve had it for over a week, I should know I put it on the shelf!).

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Left to right: Fresh Oranges, Sweet Red Pepper, Molasses, Pomegranate Juice, Coffee Beans, Agave Nectar, Fresh Limes, Fresh Strawberries, Elderflower Cordial, Lychee Soda, Grapefruit Soda & Jamaican Ginger Beer.

Still it means I was able to get some good bits, and I even found some Molasses at a health food shop (the same health food shop that told me they’d never heard of the stuff 2 weeks ago – pays to have a look for yourself it seems)…

So how does all this tie in with my cocktail recipes?

Well overall I’m almost set up for my massive Mojito session in a couple of weeks. My next post, as I’ve already shown you a preview of it in my last post, on here will contain a small library’s worth of mojito recipes. But a few weeks after that I’ll post a series of mini-reviews on how some of them (and others) tasted, how well they worked etc… They will be made using various fruits and sugar syrups (mainly infused syrups like lavender, hibiscus, jasmine, apple and kiwi, to name but a few).

Expect this about 2 weeks after Easter. But until then I thought it would be nice to show you that you can get some really great ingredients for less than you may have thought (over here in the UK at least anyway). Granted some things can cost a bit, some of you may think £2.50 for 200ml of Agave Nectar is expensive but when you liken it to the prices of honey…

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Stick to the rule of ‘Affordable Quality’ … Save up a few quid here and there, and spend out on some fresh Pomegranate Juice and some nice new sugar (agave nectar as a sugar replacement product in case)…

My advice:

1)      Spend as much time thinking about the non-alcoholic ingredients you’ll be using as you do about the actual alcohol – it is these ingredients that usually deepen the flavours in the drink and also make a lot of them nice to drink (After all a Mojito without soda water, mint and sugar syrup is, well, just rum.

2)      Spend out on hard to find ingredients, if you have the money set aside for a selection of ingredients, don’t be afraid to spend out on some of the rarer ingredients. Whilst you don’t want to spend more than £5 per 70cl of Grenadine (if you’re not making it yourself) you should be prepared to spend out a bit more for fresh fruit, especially with the weather how it is (You’ll find fruits like strawberries relatively unaffected in price, but their quality will not be at their best – this cannot be helped without going straight to the farms, however fruits like blueberries and more exotic fruits like mangoes, guava and even farmhouse classics like Rhubarb can be difficult to get cheaply at all).

3)      Enjoy the ingredients well. Obviously don’t overuse them, but don’t be afraid to try new things out. Have you purchased a new, flavoured sugar syrup? Then try it in any recipe with sugar syrup in, Hibiscus Mojito? Yes please. Jasmine & Lemon Gin Fizz? Right on! – Experiments drive the world. Give it a go and don’t be afraid to dabble.

4)      Things don’t always work how you want. Do not let that deter you, for every 1 drink you make and love, you’ll create on average 20 drinks you hate. Fact. Science. Science Fact.

I hope this has helped some of you, and please do not feel afraid to ask for help, pop me a message if you have an ingredient you want some advice with, or leave a comment. The aim of the game: Try Something New.

Keep Drinking and Keep Living. Responsibly 😉

Tequila Highball – a taste of Mexico, with a Caribbean twist…

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Combining Tequila with Grapefruit juice whilst not new, when combined like this, it makes for a great recipe…

This recipe takes its inspiration from the Anejo Highball recipe (albeit purely inspiration).

The Anejo Highball (as previously posted) is as follows:

1.5 measures Anejo Rum

½ measure fresh lime juice

½ measure dry curacao/triple sec liqueur

2-4 dashes Angostura Bitters

Top up with Ginger Beer

Lime/orange wheel slices to garnish.

The Tequila Highball recipe is, however, slightly different;

1.5 measures Gold Tequila (preferably Anejo, but Reposado will do)

 ½ measure fresh lime juice

½ measure dry curacao/triple sec liqueur

1.5 measures Pink Grapefruit Juice

1 measure Peach Schnapps

Top up with Grapefruit Soda

As you can see this is very much a Mexican themed drink, but coming from a Caribbean train of thought. Using the lime for the same reasons the rum version does, to help cut through the taste of the alcohol but using the Grapefruit juice to help blend the otherwise Margarita style concoction with the Peach Schnapps. And topping up with grapefruit soda purely lightens the up the drink (without losing the flavours).

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Tequila can mix well with almost all sweet fruits… As long as its mixed well… Don’t be afraid to experiment

This is very similar to the thought process I went through for the Mexican themed party (see my previous blog: https://theferventshaker.wordpress.com/2012/11/28/the-songwriters-shindig-south-of-the-border/) and the use of grapefruit soda along with grapefruit juice blends in well with the Mexican theme of this drink.

A side note; the Schnapps in this particular recipe, for all intents and purposes, is Peach flavoured, but you can substitute your favourite flavour if you do not like peach.