Day 124, Cocktails 118, 119, 120 & 121
So Daddy Tomato, Momma Tomato and Baby Tomato are out for a walk. Daddy Tomato has to keep turning around and telling Baby Tomato to walk faster. Finally, Daddy Tomato walks back to Baby Tomato and stomps Baby Tomato into pulp. “I said Ketchup!” he yells as he rejoins Momma Tomato.
I know you Pulp Fiction afficianodos didn’t me to mention the movie, but for the uninitiated that was the corny joke that Uma Thurman told John Travolta during their “date” to Jackrabbit Slim’s. It was her big moment in the pilot of “Fox Force Five”, her one shot at TV stardom. Alas, it wasn’t to be for Uma.
So what’s the connection? Well, I’m running as hard as I can to “ketchup” – and tonight is a big step forward with four cocktails to report on.
Last night my business associate and friend Ashish Gandhi was in town along with Dan Krueger. I met Ashish and Dan at Izumi’s for a drink and dinner. As always, we threw ourselves at the mercy of the sushi chef and we were well rewarded with an outstanding platter of rolls, sushi and sashimi. Of course, before starting dinner we had a drink at the bar. I asked the bartender what he had that featured gin and his suggestion was a Gin Rickey.
- 2 oz Bombay gin
- 1 oz lime juice
- soda water
Combine the Bombay and lime juice in shaker with ice. Shake, shake, shake and strain into a rocks glass filled with ice. Top with soda water and garnish with a lime slice.
This is a nice alternative to the a gin and tonic, leaving the quinine behind for the clean taste of the selzter. This allows the gin and lime to by the dominant flavors, and it works out quite nicely. Additionally, it worked very well with the sushi that I had for dinner!
Once dinner was over, Ashish, who is quickly becoming a cocktail maven, wanted to head to Bryant’s for more classic cocktails. We arrived to a rather full bar with Evan pouring the drinks. Evan is a terrific bartender and about as unassuming as a person can be, and it’s always good to see him there. For my first cocktail I was in the mood for bourbon and Evan suggested a depression era cocktail called the Mona Lisa. This cocktail consisted of bourbon, creme de cacao, lemon juice and bar syrup. It was mixed well and then served over crushed ice in a collins glass. I have to admit that this wasn’t my cup of tea. The creme de cacao really dominated this one and it was very chocolatey. Not that there’s anything wrong with chocolate, I love it, but I think I was really in the mood for a man’s drink…and this wasn’t it.
By the time we were ready for round two, propietor John Dye had taken over behind the bar. I asked John for something that would have whiskey and maraschino in it. His original creation, done on the spot consisted of rye, maraschino liqueur, lime juice and chartreuse. As I quizzed John about what was in it I nailed the chartreuse, but totally whiffed on the maraschino and rye. I thought John had made something akin to a previous Chad Doll effort that used scotch and drambuie. As John chuckled at my tasting ineptitude I asked him what it was called and he answered the Chad No. 1 as he headed to the other end of the bar to take of another customer. The drink was delicious, and I figured that it was the chartreuse/maraschino combination that threw me off and had me guessing drambuie.
By the time we got to round three the crowd has started to thin out and we had a chance to chat more with John. This time around I asked for something with bourbon, cherry heering and maraschino. John was spot on with the perfect blend of the three that resulted in a deep, rich, slightly cherry flavor with the bourbon capably supporting the blend of heering and maraschino. I wish I knew the exact proportions, but I’m sure I’ll figure it out one of these nights at the Twilight Lounge.
Well, there you go, a ketchup night if there ever was one. Although I didn’t make it completely back up to par, I’m sure it won’t take too much longer!