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Cocktail Hour: The Barrel Racer

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 10, 2016

I am constantly looking for new cocktails recipes that are easy for the home bartender to construct. And my favourites are those that are simple enough that the home bartender can make them without the need to buy any fancy ingredients. I do expect that the home mixologist would have some basic ingredients such as a bottle of bitters, and some form of orange liqueur in the liquor cabinet; but any other ingredients beyond those (required in the cocktail I am considering) should be items which are easily available and useful for more than just one cocktail. When I find a new recipe that matches my criteria, I tend to play with it to see if I can massage that recipe for other spirits or tweak it into something I like better.

Barrel Rider SAM_2620One such new recipe I have been playing with lately is a libation put together by Lally Brennan and Ti Adelaide Martin ( In the Land of Cocktails) and Ted Haigh (aka Dr. Cocktail). The  mixed drink they created Whoa Nellie, combines Jamaican rum and American rye whisky with lemon and grapefruit juice with bitters added for extra depth.

In my tweaked recipe, I swapped out the Jamaican rum and the American Whiskey replacing them with J.P. Wiser’s Double Still Rye Canadian Whisky. In keeping with the playful equestrian theme of the cocktail which inspired me, I have chosen to call this tweaked version the Barrel Racer.

Barrel Racer

2 oz Canadian Rye Whiskey (J.P. Wiser’s Double Still Rye)
1/2 oz Orange Liqueur (Bols Triple Sec)
1/3 oz Grapefruit Juice
1/3 oz Lemon Juice
2 dashes of Bitters (Fees Cocktail Bitters)
1/6 oz Sugar Syrup
Ice
Orange Peel Twist

Add the ingredients into a metal shaker with plenty of ice
Shake until the outside of the shaker begins to frost
Strain into a cocktail glass
Garnish with a twist of Grapefruit

Please Enjoy Responsibly!

And if  you are interested in more recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for my mixed drink recipes!

Please Note: My review for the J.P. Wiser’s Double Still Rye will publish tomorrow!

Chimo!

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2016 Spiced Rum Taste-off: Blackheart Spiced Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 9, 2016

blackheart-spiced-bottle-shotBlackheart is a relatively new spiced rum from the Blackheart Rum Co, a whole owned subsidiary of Heaven Hill Distilleries. The spirit is bottled at 46.5 % alcohol by volume, and produced  from imported rum which has been blended with a hint of spice, caramel and natural flavors.

When I investigated the brand I learned the Blackheart Spiced Rum Company has recently introduced a marketing campaign featuring Playboy Playmate, Kayla Collins as the Miss Blackheart 2016. According to the company website:

“Blackheart Rum has teamed up with Playboy and selected the Playmate who has been named Miss Blackheart 2016! Fans voted and chose Kayla Collins, the Playmate who embodies the bold, bawdy, edgy and seductive traits just like Blackheart. We can promise she’s bold and brazen enough to carry the title!”

The spirits company has also teamed with Bellator MMA and is working with the inaugural Bellator MMA Dynamite 1 Light Heavyweight Tournament Champion, Phil Davis in a corporate partnership to bring more viability to the Blackheart Spiced Rum brand.

All that marketing is fine, what we really want to know is how the spiced rums tastes …  

#10 Blackheart Spiced Rum

“… The nose is tainted with hints of black cherry, cinnamon, licorice and indistinguishable peppery spices which accent the caramel rum scent. The combination is quite interesting and reminds me of Dr. Pepper soda (but not nearly so sweet which I hope bodes well for the spiced rum) …”

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I hope you all find this countdown enjoyable and you can follow the rankings here:

The Rum Howler 2016 Spiced Rum Countdown

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Review: Flatboat Kentucky Straight Bourbon

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 7, 2016

Flatboat SAM_2612Flatboat (Spirit of the River) is a private label Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey produced by Sazerac Brewery Company  for the Alberta Liquor Depot Chain of liquor stores. Flatboat is produced at the Barton 1792 Distillery which also produces 1792 Ridgemont Reserve Bourbon. As a straight whisky we can deduce the spirit is aged for a minimum of four years, and as a bourbon we can further deduce the spirit was aged in new oak casks for that entire aging period. Unfortunately, because the spirit arrives with very little information either upon its label or upon the Sazerac Website, we can deduce very little else.

Here is a link to my review:

Review: Flatboat Kentucky Straight Bourbon

“… The initial aroma from the glass revealed a dry grassiness augmented with spicy oak and tempered with light butterscotch. At 45 % alcohol by volume, I was expecting more of an alcohol push so I was pleasantly surprised to see very little sign of astringency. When I returned to the glass, fine oak spices have built up aromas and bits of vanilla had revealed themselves. The initial grassy aromas have moved towards green tobacco and intermixed within all of the scents are bits of spicy orange citrus peel and a few almond-like scents …”

Please enjoy my review of this new Kentucky Straight Bourbon.

Chimo!

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Cocktail Hour: Bourbon Smash

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 6, 2016

Flatboat Smash SAM_2614Here is a recipe based upon the Whiskey Smash as found in Leo Engels 1878 book, American and Other Drinks. Leo adds a dash of Jamaican Rum to the mixed drink which I found rather odd, until I tried it. It turns out that a dab of strongly flavoured dark Jamaican rum adds a very complementary flavour component to the smashing cocktail. Whereas Leo preferred a sugar rimmed glass and an orange peel garnish, I find that a simple embellishment of mint leaf is sufficient to dress the serving.

Please enjoy my cocktail suggestion:

Bourbon Smash

2 oz Flatboat Kentucky Straight Bourbon
dash of Jamaican Rum (Coruba Dark Jamaican Rum)
10 ml Sugar Syrup
4 small mint leaves
1 lime slice
Ice
Mint Sprig

Muddle mint leaves, lime slice, dash of Jamaican rum and sugar syrup in the bottom of a mixing glass
Remove the mint leaves and transfer to a metal shaker
Add Bourbon and Ice
Shake until the outside of the shaker frosts
Double strain into a chilled cocktail glass

Enjoy Responsibly!

Note: If  you are interested in more of my original cocktail recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for more of my mixed drink recipes!

Note: My review of Flatboat Kentucky Straight Bourbon will publish tomorrow!

Chimo!

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2016 Spiced Rum Taste-off: Siesta Key Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 5, 2016

SAM_0469 Siesta Key Spiced RumDrum Circle Distilling is a small artisan distillery located in Sarasota, Florida. Their distillation system was crafted for the distillery by Christian Carl a German company which has been producing distillation systems for over 150 years. Working directly with Christian Carl, Drum Circle Distilling was able to custom design a small-batch copper still (which can be run as a simple pot still or with a side column) which they believe is perfect for making great tasting rum.

Siesta Key Spiced Rum is an interesting spirit. Founder (and Distiller) of Drum Circle Distilling, Troy Roberts, begins with his Silver Rum. Then he adds a bit of his Siesta Gold Rum (reviewed here) to the mix. Finally, he spices the resulting blend using real spices. Troy literally weighs each of the spices and tosses them into a tank of rum to infuse. He uses no corn syrup or other industrial sweetener, instead Mr. Roberts uses honey to add sweetness (and flavor).

Here is a link to my review:

#11 Siesta Key Spiced Rum

“… Here is a spiced rum that refuses to knock me over with vanilla. The sweetness which normally accompanies spiced rum is diminished as well. Instead it is those pumpkin spices which lead out onto my palate. The flavour is just aggressive enough to let you know that you are drinking a spiced rum, but not so aggressive that anything is uncomfortable …”

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I hope you all find this countdown enjoyable and you can follow the rankings here:

The Rum Howler 2016 Spiced Rum Countdown

 

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Review: Wilson and Morgan – Home Blend 35 Year Old

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 3, 2016

W&M HomeblendWilson and Morgan is an independent bottler of Scotch Whisky based in Italy. The company was founded in 1992 by Fabio Rossi who also founded Rum Nation. Wilson and Morgan specialize in single grain and single malt whiskies which have been purchased by the barrel from selected Scottish distillers. The whisky barrels  purchased range in age from 10 years to 30 years and are left to age (usually at the distillery where they were purchased) until they are ready to be bottled sometimes after they have been re-casked for finishing in port, rum or Marsala casks.

The 1980 Sherry Wood 35 Year Old Home Blend Whisky (barrel  #26) was distilled in 1980 and bottled in 2015. The whisky is part of Wilson and Morgan’s Collector’s Edition which comprises of special bottlings all of which are currently aged 30 years or more. The whiskies within this aged blend were married together in a sherry butt, (barrel number 26) which produced 529 bottles at 47.6 % alcohol by volume (my bottle is number 424). This spirit was bottled with the intent to create a venerable old whisky which would hearken back to an earlier time when well aged blends were the undisputed crown jewels of Scottish whisky.

Here is a link to my full review of this well aged blend:

Review: Wilson and Morgan – Home Blend 35 Year Old

“… The nose brings notes of dark brown sugar combined with rich baking spice and sherry-like notes of dates and raisins. Vanilla and orange marmalade come forward as does a welling of pipe tobacco spice. Hints of ‘old leather jacket’ seem to wisp into the air only to disappear and then reappear as wet burlap …”

Please enjoy my review of this venerable blended whisky, Chimo!

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Review: Revel Stoke Deluxe Canadian Whisky

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 2, 2016

Revel Stoke WhiskyRevelstoke SAM_2621 is a product of the Phillips Distilling Company and is named for the town of Revelstoke, located in the mountains of British Columbia. The whisky itself is however not produced in British Columbia but instead it is distilled on the other side of those mountains at an undisclosed Canadian Distillery.

According to the producer’s website, the whisky is produced by blending a young 3-year-old whisky (the youngest allowed by Canadian Law) with a more mature 8-year-old whisky. The final blend is bottled at 40 % alcohol by volume.

Here is a link to my review of this new Canadian Whisky:

Review: Revel Stoke Deluxe Canadian Whisky

“… The flavour of the whisky leads out with a lightly sweet impression of toffee alongside both bitter and spicy rye grain. The mouthfeel is soft, however the whisky has plenty of wood spice to both heat and pucker the palate between sips.  This is a dusty dry whisky, and as I sip, impressions of ripened grain fields and dry grassy hay lands both find their way into my consciousness …”

Please enjoy this new Canadian Whisky review!

Chimo!

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2016 Spiced Rum Taste-off: Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on July 1, 2016

Sailor Jerry SAM_2686Sailor Jerry Ltd. was formed when Ed Hardy and Mike Malone partnered with a small Philadelphia clothing store to make running shoes, t-shirts and other assorted products featuring the tattoo artwork of Norman Collins (Aka Sailor Jerry). Collins, who was also a writer and a poet, as well as a radio show host, is best remembered today as one of the great pioneers of tattoo art and culture.

Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum was created in 1991 as a logical extension of the Sailor Jerry brand. At 96 proof it is a relatively strong spiced rum, and like the tattoo artwork of its namesake, word of Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum has slowly spread around the world.

In fact, it is now one of the best-selling spiced rum brands in the world.

Here is a link to my new review:

#12 Sailor Jerry Spiced Navy Rum

” … What I taste is reminiscent of black cherry soda with accents of dark caramel, licorice, and vanilla. There is also a smattering of cinnamon and cloves, and some hints of nutmeg and allspice. This makes the flavour profile for Sailor Jerry quite different from most of the other vanilla enhance spiced rums currently in the marketplace …”

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I hope everyone finds this spiced rum countdown enjoyable, and I hope you are following the rankings here:

The Rum Howler 2016 Spiced Rum Countdown

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Cocktail Hour: The Jerrycan

Posted by Arctic Wolf on June 30, 2016

Jerrycan SAM_2690Spiced rums are not necessarily just mixing spirits for soda filled deck drinks (hey, I love refreshing tall bar drinks; but sometimes I prefer shorter more refined cocktails). One of the best examples of a short spiced rum cocktail is the Cable Car which was created in 1996 at the Starlight Room in San Fransisco by Tony Abou-Ganim. Tony’s recipe is based upon the Classic Sidecar; however the Cable Car uses Captain Morgan Original Spiced Rum as the base of the cocktail instead of brandy.

When I recently revisited Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum, I decided that this popular spirit deserved to be featured in a refined serving as well. Taking my inspiration from my popular gin based cocktail, the March Lion, (which was in turn inspired by the classic cocktail the Red Lion), I set about to make a such cocktail using Sailor Jerry as the base of the libation.

The result of my machinations was the very tasty, Jerrycan.

The Jerrycan

1 1/2 oz Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum
1/2 oz Bols Triple Sec
1/2 oz fresh Orange Juice
1/2 oz fresh Lime Juice
dash Sugar Syrup (to taste)
Ice
Orange Peel

Add the first five ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice
Shake until the outside of the shaker begins to frost
Strain into a chilled cocktail glass (double strain to remove all pulp)
Garnish with a thin coil of orange peel and a small lump of ice

Please Enjoy Responsibly!

If  you are interested in more of my original cocktail recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for more of my mixed drink recipes!

Note: Sailor Jerry enters my summer spiced rum taste off tomorrow as the 12th best spiced rum currently on my bar shelf.

Chimo!

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Review: Cabresto Don Silver Reserve Series Extra Añejo

Posted by Arctic Wolf on June 29, 2016

Extra Anejo (Cabresto) SAM_2574On March 7th, 2016 Tequila Cabresto released the latest addition to their line of premium tequila, Don Silver Reserve Series Extra Añejo. This is a 100 % agave tequila which (according to the media information sent to me) has been aged for seven years in American white oak former whiskey barrels.

Although the Cabresto website does not specify the exact distillery which produces this agave spirit, I did notice that the identified NOM on the bottom of the label 1509. This NOM identifier is required by the Mexican Government to be placed on the label of each bottle of tequila to verify that it is produced legally from agave sourced in the Tequila region of Mexico. Each distillery has its own NOM, and thus we can trace the distillery of origin. In this case the producing distillery is Tequila Embajador who incidentally also produce Alma de Agave and of course Embajador Tequila.

Here is a Link to my full review of this rare extra-anejo tequila from Cabresto:

Review: Cabresto Don Silver Reserve Series Extra Añejo

“… The extra-anejo spirit brings light sandalwood and oak spices into the air alongside a nice rich agave presence. Light caramel scents accent the agave and the oak, and as I continue to nose the glass the three aspects of the aroma seem to merge together forming a lightly sweet impression of agave oak syrup. Peppery spices build up as does the firm earthy agave presence. Tea leaves, bits of milk chocolate and hints of cinnamon round out the nose which is very inviting …”

Please enjoy my review of this outstanding aged spirit.

Chimo!

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