I know that to some of my friends it seems like I just open up the liquor cabinet at the Twilight Lounge, pull out a few seemingly random bottles and whip up a cocktail that’s delicious and nutritious, just like that. Alright, well, actually, it does sometimes work like that. However, more times than not it takes several iterations to get a cocktail where I want it. This week was an example of the latter as I worked on tonight’s cocktail over a span of several days, until finally I was able to say “That’s It!” to myself.
I started off with the notion that I wanted to recreate a root beer float. That meant using the root beer flavoring from LorAnn Oils. But what else to use? I decided on a base of vodka, which provides pretty much a blank slate to work with. My first crack at it was 2 oz of vodka (Sobieski, for those of you keeping score at home), 2 drops of the root beer flavor and 1/4 ounce of grenadine. This effort was ok. The grenadine was subtle but there, but the root beer was also subtle, and I wanted this to be bolder. I also didn’t get the creaminess that a root beer float would have, but I didn’t want to add ice cream. The second iteration kept the same amount of vodka and grenadine, but I bumped up the root beer flavoring to 3 drops and added 1 egg white. Much better, as the egg white added the creamy texture that I wanted, but the root beer was still a tad muted. Finally, version three came through when I bumped up the root beer flavor to 4 drops. Ah yes, now I had a tasty cocktail that is evocative of the root beer float flavor I wanted to emulate.
Root Beer Float
- 2 oz vodka
- 4 drops LorAnn Oil root beer flavor
- 1/4 oz grenadine
- 1 egg white
Combine all the ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake, shake, shake to combine and chill. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with a maraschino cherry.
When you shake this drink (as with any drink containing egg whites) give it as hard a shake as you can for 30 seconds. This is about 10 seconds longer than I normally shake cocktails, but it is essential to get the frothy emulsification you want from the egg. Also, as I’ve noted before, I use pasteurized egg whites purchases from my local grocer in the cardboard container (just like the milk you got at school as a kid). It’s much easier to add the egg white to a drink when I can pour it from a carton, not to mention safer. I use 1/2 oz of egg white when the recipe calls for 1 egg white.