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Tag Archives: chili

Day 299, Cocktails 296 & 297

Tonight’s first cocktail is courtesy of the Dinner Party Download (to which, if you are not already subscribed to, you should be!)  The history behind the cocktail was the marriage of Charles Sherwood Stratton, better known as Tom Thumb, to Lavinia Warren in 1863.  The wedding was a huge spectacle, and may have been the wedding of the century.  Although many at the time considered yet another publicity stunt by P.T. Barnum, by all accounts the couple was very much in love.

The cocktail itself was created by John Ginetti of 116 Crown in New Haven, CT, the birthplace of Stratton and Sherwood.  It’s called the 4th and Clyde.

  4th and Clyde

  • 1 oz Hendrick’s gin
  • 1 oz Maker’s Mark bourbon
  • 1 oz St. Germain
  • 1/8 oz honey
  • pinch of chili flakes

In a mixing glass, with no ice, combine all the ingredients and stir to combine.  You need to do this warm in order to get the honey to incorporate.  Once blended, add ice and stir to chill.  Double strain into a chilled coupe.

A very nice cocktail that is well balanced.  Slightly sweet from the honey and St. Germain with a touch of heat from the chili that helps bring the bourbon forward.  I really enjoyed this cocktail.

This led me to tweak the recipe just a bit to create what I called the Tom Thumb.

  Tom Thumb

  • 1 oz Hendrick’s gin
  • 1 oz Maker’s Mark bourbon
  • 1 oz St. Germain
  • 1/2 oz Cointreau
  • 1/8 oz maple syrup

Combine the ingredients in a mixing glass with ice and stir to combine and chill.  Strain into a chilled coupe.

Subtle changes to the ingredient list, but big changes in flavor.  The orange of the Cointreau really balances very nicely with the St. Germain’s elderflower, but maintains the sweetness.  The maple syrup replaces the chili flakes, taking the heat away, but allowing the bourbon to still come through nicely.  Not what I’d consider a boozy cocktail with all the sweet ingredients, but not overly sweet either, as was the case with the 4th and Clyde.

Give this pair a try and let me know what you think!


Day 126, Cocktail 124

Ok, so maybe it wasn’t as swank and swell as the picture, but we did attend a party last night that included drinks and dinner.  It was a fun night hosted by our friends Julie and Dave and there were 8 or 9 people there, so it qualifies as a party!

Chili was the main course and most of the guys (me included) brought beer to drink.  However, Dave also had mixed up a pitcher of margaritas (and then several more as the night wore on!).  I have to admit that I did have one (or three) as we moved into the party games after dinner.    One of the games was Imagine If – the object is to read a card, starting with Imagine if so and so was a store manager, would the store be … and then there are 6 choices that are read off.  I was absolutely shocked when one of the questions was “Imangine if you were looking for Stan at night” and my friends were unaminous in there selection of a bar as the place to find me.  Really?  Oh well.

So where was I…right, the margarita’s.  Dave used a recipe that I’ve used for years now whenever I need an easy to make crowd pleaser, the beer margarita.  This is simple to make by the pitcher or by the gallon (as I’ve done for BBQ’s and pool parties).

  Beer Margarita

  • 12 oz can limeade
  • 12 oz tequila
  • 12 oz water
  • 12 oz beer

Just combine everything in a pitcher, stir to mix and serve over ice.  Garnish with a lime wedge (just set a bowl of them out next to the ice).

Like I said, it’s tough to get much easier than this.  The key is to use a decent quality tequila and beer.  The tequila doesn’t have to be top shelf, but don’t reach for the store brand tequila on the bottom shelf either.  A good rule of thumb is that if the bottle is dusty don’t buy it!  As for beer, I like to use Sam Adams, but any good quality lager or ale will do.  In fact, play around with different beers to see what it does to the flavor before picking your favorite.

So fire up the grill, grab the party hats and have fun!