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Tag Archives: knob creek

winter-solstice-at-juniper-61Wauwatosa, WI – February 14, 2017

St. Valentines Day found me at Juniper 61 in Wauwatosa for dinner with a friend (thank you City Tins – Restaurant Edition!).  Dinner was delicious (and was again tonight), but I knew the food would be delicious.  I also knew that I would get a great cocktail, and I was not disappointed.

I tried the Winter Solstice from the specialty cocktail menu.  With Knob Creek bourbon as it’s base I figured it had to be good.  What caught my eye, though, were the fruity, sweet additions:  Bird Dog Peach whiskey, the pear flavored Mathilde Poire and a float of Mathilde Cassis.  Soda water is the last ingredient, adding a bit of fizz and helping cut the sweet factor.

Overall a very refreshing and light bourbon cocktail.  It does verge on being too sweet for me (a dash or two bitters would probably take care of that), but I could drink a couple of these, no problem.  The bourbon is definitely there at the base, and the peach flavor is in the forefront (much like some of the peach liqueur and bourbon drinks I’ve played with in the past).  The pear and cassis provide depth.  In fact, I’d enjoy this on a warm summer day and think this should be the Summer Solstice rather than the Winter Solstice!

Cheers!

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Milwaukee, WI – February 16, 2012

As some of you know, I’m a fan of the Dinner Party Download podcast from NPR (and now a bona fide radio show).  If you haven’t checked it out yet, you should.  It’s lively, it’s entertaining and it helps prepare you for the weekend’s dinner party or other social events.  And, it has a weekly cocktail!

A while back (in October of 2010 to be exact) they ran a history bit regarding the great London Beer Flood of 1814.  It seems that a vat filled with 135,000 imperial gallons of beer gave way, causing more vats of beer to also collapse.  In the end over 320,000 imperial gallons of beer crashed out of the brewery and into the surrounding neighborhood, killing nine and destroying a number of homes and businesses (including several taverns).   

So where else to get a cocktail to remember the event than Milwaukee?  A call was made to Bryant’s looking for an appropriate cocktail, and bartender Katie Rose was up to the task, creating the “Last Call to Porter” for the show. 

Fast forward a year and a half, and, finally, I was at Bryant’s on an evening when Katie Rose was on duty.  I asked if she had what she needed to make me the Last Call to Porter, and, yes, she did!

  Last Call to Porter

  • 1 oz Knob Creek bourbon
  • 1/2 oz green Chartreuse
  • 1/2 oz Benedictine
  • Porter beer

Combine the bourbon, Chartreuse and Benedictine in a shaker with ice and shake hard.  Strain into a chilled coupe and top with your favorite porter.

A wonderful, woody flavor emerged and danced across my tongue.  The combination of the liqueurs and the porter leave an impression of Aperol, but the finish is much stronger and is a very nice mix of sweet and bitter.  A fantastic effort by Katie Rose!

As to how she came up with the ingredients, she makes it sound easy.  The Knob Creek is aged for nine years and thus represents the nine who died in the flood.  The Chartreuse and Benedictine were selected since beer was originally invented by monks (and these two liqueurs were as well).  And the porter – well, you shouldn’t have to ask.

So, the next time you stop by Bryant’s and Katie Rose is behind the bar ask for a Last Call to Porter.

Cheers!

May 25, 2011 – The Twilight Lounge

About a week and a half ago it was a quiet evening at home  – perfect for a bourbon based cocktail as I contemplated what I needed to get done the next day.  I started flipping through some of my cocktail books and found this little number.

  Gall Bracer

  • 2 oz bourbon
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 1/8 oz grenadine

Combine the ingredients in a mixing glass with ice and stir.  Strain into a rocks glass with 3-4 ice cubes or an ice ball.  Squeeze a lemon twist over the top of the glass (discarding afterwards) and garnish with a cherry.

To properly mix, be sure to add the bitters first, then the grenadine and then the bourbon.  This applies anytime you are using bitters – adding it first to your ice will ensure it is fully incorporated, especially when you are stirring your cocktail (as opposed to shaking). 

In the Gall Bracer I used Knob Creek and this was a delicious sipper.  With just a hint of the Angostura and grenadine to mellow the bourbon out it really allows the flavor of the Knob Creek to come through as the king of this cocktail.  The flavors are actually reminiscent of a Manhattan, with the grenadine taking the place of what traditionally would be sweet vermouth.

Cheers!

 

Day 362, Cocktails 361 & 362

…but it turned out I was mistaken.

So tonight’s mea culpa is that I had a miscount on my days.  I’ve actually been off by two days, and it’s two days the wrong way, meaning I have 2 less days to complete my journey.  Fortunately I was ahead of the count in terms of cocktails, so all is well.  However, I’m sure Andy will have something to say about all this!

Now, back to the fun stuff – the cocktails!  I did two last night, the first a recipe from Dale Degroff’s “The Craft of the Cocktail” that I selected for its ease of mixing and cool sophistication.

  Black Rose

  • 2 oz bourbon
  • 2 dashes Peychaud’s bitters
  • 1 dash grenadine

Combine the ingredients in a mixing glass with ice and stir to chill and combine.  Strain into a rocks glass over an ice ball.  Garnish with a flamed lemon peel.

For this drink I used Knob Creek bourbon and it was a winner!  The deep, charcoal flavor of the bourbon was mellowed ever so slightly by the grenadine and Peychaud’s.  It was reminiscent of a Manhattan, but without the sweetness and allowed the bourbon to still be the star.  I really liked this drink and will definitely be having it again!

Unfortunately, Gwen didn’t really appreciate the Black Rose.  She asked me to make something with cucumber, so here’s what I put together for her.

  Cucumber Mule

  • 2 cucumber slices, about 1/4″ thick
  • 1/8 oz bar syrup
  • 2 oz Cazadores tequila
  • 1/2 oz lime juice
  • 1-1/2 oz Old Ballycastle ginger
  • Seltzer water

Muddle the cucumber and bar syrup in the bottom of a collins glass.  Add the tequila, lime juice and ginger and stir.  Fill the glass with ice and top with seltzer water.

Mmmm, a nice variation of the Monterrey Mule that lets the hint of cucumber compliment the ginger and tequila.  I thoroughly enjoyed this refreshing cocktail and can’t wait to have it on a warm summer evening – assuming summer does show up around here sooner or later….

Cheers!

Day 271, Cocktail 274

Liz Phair rocked at Turner Hall last night!  And to really make my night she mostly played cuts from her “Exile in Guyville” disc, which is my favorite!  The only song I she didn’t play that I would have really liked to have heard was “Flower”, but hey, I guess you can’t always get what you want.

After the show I headed home and found our friends Patti and Greg down in the Lounge with Gwen.  I was just in time to help out with the last round of cocktails.  Before the show I had come up with my Liz Phair cocktail.  While I was working on it, in the back of mind, I had a similar drink that I wanted to call Flower in honor of the song.  So I tried it out….and it didn’t work.  I used the Knob Creek again, but replaced the orange bitters with Peychaud’s and tried St. Germain instead of the Luxardo maraschino.  It was not very good.  The St. Germain and the bourbon clashed and the Peychaud’s just didn’t jibe with either in this drink.  I made a note to myself last night to try adding Cointreau, and maybe that would help, but I doubt it. 

Fortunately, the concert was much better than my post show drink!

Cheers!

Day 271, Cocktail 273

I’m going to see Liz Phair tonight at Turner Hall Ballroom in downtown Milwaukee, and I am psyched!  I’ve never seen her live and she is one of my all time favorites!  I’ve been listenening to her music since Exile in Guyville and I just love her music.

Sooo, I began to think, just what would Liz Phair drink before or after her show?  I’m pretty sure she’s not a girlie cocktail kind of gal.  No, she be drinking like the guys.  But not beer.  Probably tequila or bourbon I figure.  So it’s time to dump Brandi (sorry girl, you were such a fine girl, but your week is over) and I reached into the cabinet for the Knob Creek bourbon.

  Liz Phair

  • 2-1/2 oz Knob Creek bourbon
  • 1/4 oz Luxardo maraschino liqueur
  • 2 dashes Agnosturo orange bitters

Combine the ingredients in a mixing glass with ice.  Stir vigorously to mix and chill.  Let the drink sit for a moment or two (OK, more like 30 – 60 seconds) to give the ice a chance to melt a bit.  Meanwhile, prep a rocks glass with an ice ball.  Strain into the rocks glass over the ice ball.

Of course Liz drinks her bourbon with an ice ball – she’s the epitomy of balls for heaven’s sake!  And the extra melt is important to help take the edge of the bourbon.  Overall, a good cocktail, although I did have to sneak up on the amount of Luxardo in it.  It has a nice kick from the bourbon a just a hint of cherry and orange flavors from the Luxardo and Agnosturo orange bitters. 

Maybe I’ll sneak back stage and make for Liz Phair tonight…or maybe I’ll just worm my way up to the front of the stage and dance my butt off instead!

Cheers!