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Tag Archives: cutty sark

Day 210, Cocktails 202 & 203

As I was writing my blog post last night I decided to enjoy a cocktail that would be the feature for today’s post.  Being adventurous, I hit CocktailDB and use the random drink feature.  It’s kinda’ like eating from a box of chocolates…you just never know what you might get.

What I got was a variant on the Rob Roy cocktail.  I’ll delve into that classic in tomorrow’s post.  This post is about the Dry Rob Roy.  The first one I tried was 1-3/4 oz scotch (I used Cutty Sark) and 3/4 oz of dry vermouth, garnished with an olive.  While I did manage to drink it all, boy, it wasn’t the most pleasant of experiences.  I couldn’t tell if it was the olive or just the mix of scotch and vermouth, but it had an odd, almost medicinal aftertaste.  I love scotch and like dry vermouth with my gin, but this baby just wasn’t working for me.

However, being the intrepid soul that I am, I decided I could make something of this cocktail.  So, I tried again using the same proportions of scotch and vermouth, added a dash of Agnosturo bitters and swapped a lemon twist for the olive.  And?  It really wasn’t any better.  Thus, for one of the few days of my quest I came up goose eggs with not one, but two cocktails that I just can’t recommend.  Live and learn!


Day 198, Cocktails 192 & 193

And so my exploration of cocktails named Buck continues this week.  Tonight was a face off (no, it did not involve John Travolta and Nicholas Cage) between Irish and Scotch Whiskey.  As with last night’s cocktail, each cocktail features a 2 oz pour of the liquor in question along with the juice a lemon wedge and 5 oz or so of ginger ale.  And as with last night’s cocktail, each is cleverly named.  Let’s see how they fared.

  Scotch Buck

  • 2 oz scotch whiskey
  • 5 oz ginger ale
  • lemon wedge

Fill a collins glass with ice and squeeze the lemon wedge over the top.  Add the scotch and top with the ginger ale.

I used Cutty Sark for this one and I have to admit, it just didn’t click for me.  The smokey, peaty flavor of the scotch (and Cutty is by no means a strong scotch) did not blend well with the ginger ale or lemon.  It seemed like one big bar brawl in the glass.  I’ve come around to the idea of mixed drinks that use scotch, but this is one that won’t be on my list at the Twilight Lounge.

  Irish Buck

  • 2 oz irish whiskey
  • 5 oz ginger ale
  • lemon wedge

Fill a collins glass with ice and squeeze the lemon wedge over the top.  Add the irish whiskey and top with the ginger ale.

I used Bushmills for this cocktail and, wow, what a difference!  The lemon, ginger ale and Bushmills all come together to create a light, citrusy cocktail that was delicious and very smooth.  This is one that I would have again!


Day 175, Cocktails 168 & 169

After a full day of working on the floor at the Twilight Lounge I’m happy to report that the old carpet pad is finally and completely gone, leaving me with a bare concrete floor.  That will be remedied soon – the new cork laminate floor has been ordered and will arrive in a couple of weeks.  By early November it will be back to normal!

So, what to do now to relax?  Well, since I know it won’t be long before the Twilight Lounge is more suave and debonair than ever, what better way to unwind than with the Debonair Cocktail?

  Debonair Cocktail

  • 2 oz Scotch
  • 1 oz Domaine de Canton liqueur

Combine the scotch and Domaine de Canton on a mixing glass with ice.  Stir to chill and combine.  Strain into a chilled coupe and garnish with a lemon twist.

This is a cocktail that will really change based on the scotch that you used.  I kept it basic by using my house blended Scotch, Cutty Sark (although I do admit I’d love to try this with the much smokier Laphroig some day).  I enjoyed this cocktail but the sweet ginger of the Domaine de Canton completely overwhelmed the Cutty Sark.  With that thought in mind it was back to the bar.  I knew I could come up with a better balance.

  Suave and Debonair

  • 2-1/4 oz Scotch
  • 1/2 oz Domaine de Canton

Combine the scotch and Domaine de Canton on a mixing glass with ice.  Stir to chill and combine.  Strain into a chilled coupe and garnish with a lemon twist.

Now this effort really hit the spot!  The scotch is mellowed just enough by the Domaine de Canton to allow both flavors to intermingle and shine through.  I really enjoyed the balance and flavor of this cocktail.

Got a time when you adjusted a cocktail to suit your tastes?  Let me know and I’ll share with my readers!


Day 170, Cocktails 165 & 166

Although the weather here over the weekend was more like summer than fall, there’s no doubt that autumn is here.  All I have to do is look out in the yard and see all the leaves on the grass to know that it’s October.  This time of year also means apple picking and making apple pies and homemade applesauce…mmm, mmm good!  At the Twilight Lounge it also means its time for the Calvados.

Just what is Calvados, you ask.  The answer is really quite simple.  It is an apple brandy that originates from the  Lower Normandy region of France.  It has been around since the days of Charlemagne in the 8th century and has continued since then pretty much the same.  Of course, modern Calvados are made by hundreds of producers, but all come from the Calvados appellation controlled region of France.

Tonight I have two cocktails that are original recipes (as far as I know) and are variations on the same theme.  The first is a classic style cocktail that I call a Nailed Apple.  The name comes from the twist that this is on a Rusty Nail

  Nailed Apple

  • 2 oz Cutty Sark scotch
  • 1 oz Drambuie
  • 1/2 oz Calvados

Combine the ingredients in a mixing glass with ice.  Stir to chill and combine.  Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.  Rim the glass with a twist and serve.

Very similar in flavor to the Rusty Nail, but with just a hint of apple from the Calvados.  If you are a scotch fan the fun you can have with this drink by trying different scotches is nearly endless.  For example, I think making this with a smokier scotch such as Laphroig would be an amazing cocktail.

The second cocktail of the evening is a variation that adds even more fall flavor.  I call it the Maple Apple.

  Maple Apple

  • 2 oz Cutty Sark scotch
  • 1 oz Drambuie
  • 1 oz Calvados
  • 1/8 oz maple syrup
  • seltzer water

Combine all the ingredients except the seltzer water in a mixing glass with ice.  You’ll want to add the maple syrup last so that it doesn’t end up just sticking to the ice.  Stir to chill and combine.  Pour (ice and all) into a rocks glass and top with selzter water. 

I think this one turned out pretty good as well.  I can imangine sitting besides the fire pit on a crisp fall night with this drink in my hand.  The increased amount of Calvados comes through with more apple flavor while the maple syrup adds just a touch of sweetness.  Give it a try and let me know what you think!


Day 108, Cocktails 108 & 109

If Hollywood can make no less than three versions of the movie, I figure I can try three versions of the cocktail.  From the first sip of the first effort at the Blood and Sand I knew that, ultimately, this is the version I’d come up with.  Kind of like a love at first sight thing, do you know what I mean?

Those of you who know me well (that means you Stoffel) will say, duh, of course you were going to end up there.  Even you semi regular readers should not be suprised.

So just what the heck am I babbling about anyway?  Why, the use of Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur in place of the cherry brandy, of course.  That oh so tart maraschino flavor is perfectly complemented by the sweet vermouth and orange juice, with the smokiness of the scotch sitting in the background, nice and mellow.  I can just see the scotch, sitting in a wing backed arm chair, smoking a pipe, trying to decide which of his two loves, sweet vermouth or maraschino liqueur, to go home with.  Aw, heck, take ’em both home!

  Blood And Stan

  • 3/4 oz scotch
  • 3/4 oz sweet vermouth
  • 3/4 oz Luxardo maraschino liqueur
  • 3/4 oz orange juice

Combine all the ingredients in a shaker with ice and shake to mix and chill.  Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and enjoy – no garnish necessary.

For the record, I’ve been using Cutty Sark scotch for all these variants.  Feel like something bolder?  Try Laphroaig instead to amp up the peat and smoke flavors.

I’m glad I got that out there and off my chest.  Really, I’ve been thinking about this cocktail since last Saturday!

Round two tonight was a cocktail for Gwen that was inspired by the show “Drink Up” on the Cooking Channel.  Yes, I know that one cooking network wasn’t enough and that we needed another.  At least these guys have shows about cocktails!  It was also helpful that I was able to use a couple of ingredients fresh from the garden.  Really, I mean fresh, as in about 2 minutes from being picked to being in the cocktail!  That’s one of the neat things about summer – there are so many truly fresh ingredients that you can work with right out of your own bar garden.

  Basil Collins

  • 2 oz Hendricks gin
  • 1 oz lemon juice
  • 1/2 oz bar syrup
  • seltzer water
  • 3 cucumber slices, about 1/8″ thick
  • 1 orange slice, about 1/8″ thick
  • 1 basil leaf

In a mixing glass combine the cucumber, orange, basil and bar syrup.  Gently muddle.  The key here is gentle – you want to leave the basil, orange and cucumber relatively intact while extracting the flavors that each contains.  Add several ice cubes, the gin and lemon juice.  Pour back and forth between two mixing glasses several times to mix.  Finally, pour into a collins glass and top with seltzer water.  Garnish with an orange slice or wedge.

Yet another light, refreshing summertime cocktail.  The fresh basil and cucumber work very well together and with the citrus flavors.  The gin is there, but not overpowering at all.  Mix one up and let me know what you think – or better yet, let me know about your twist on this one!


Octopussy, anyone?

Day 48, Cocktail 43

I figure there were at least 5 different James Bonds, so I can have at least 5 different James Bond martini style cocktails.  Hey, it sounds logical to me!

Anyway, Gwen and I watched Roger Moore in Octopussy Friday night.  The scenery is exotic (mostly set in India) and Maud Adams is fabulous as the “Bond” girl.    Whenever we watch a Bond film a martini style drink is in order.  For tonight, we had a variation of the Smokey Vesper.


  • 4 oz Plymouth gin
  • 1/2 oz Martini & Rossi dry vermouth
  • 1/4 oz Cutty Sark scotch
  • 2 dashes Agnosturo bitters

Combine all the ingredients in a shaker with 4-5 ice cubes.  Shake vigorously to mix and chill.  Pour into a chilled cocktail glass.  Garnish with three cocktail olives.

As with all my Bond cocktails, the quantities above make 2 (hey, I’m always watching Bond movies with Gwen!).  The gin takes front and center in this one, with just a very subtle smoke flavor from the scotch.  Enjoy with your favorite Bond or Bond girl!


Day 45, Cocktail 42

I enjoyed the scotch based cocktails at Bryant’s so much a couple of nights ago that I decided to try another one tonight.  A quick browse through Dale Degroff’s “The Craft of the Cocktail” brought me to another scintilating scotch based cocktail.  This little gem was developed by Gary Regan, a very accomplished bartender himself.  It combines two favorites of mine, scotch and Domaine de Canton, and is about as simple as cocktail mixing can be.

  Debonaire Cocktail

  • 2-1/2 oz scotch
  • 3/4 oz Domaine de Canton liqueur

Combine the ingredients in a mixing glass with several ice cubes.  Stir completely to chill.  Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and serve ungarnished.

Mr. Regan absolutely nails the proportions with this cocktail and the sweet ginger flavor of the Canton is perfectly balanced with the smokey scotch (I used Cutty Sark – an even peatier scotch would be divine in this).