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Day 345, Cocktail 352

Wednesday was my window of opportunity to smoke some beef brisket.  As some of you already know, when I roll out the smoker and make BBQ, whether it’s pork shoulder, brisket, turkey or ribs, it’s an all day affair for me.  And to be honest, I enjoy it immensely, in part because it’s a great reason to sit outside most of the day and sip bourbon laced cocktails!

Typically I would have enjoyed a simple bourbon and cola or perhaps just on the rocks.  When I lived in the Carolina’s it would have been bourbon and Mello Yello (if you haven’t tried that you do not know what you’re missing!).  On Wednesday I decided to be adventurous and a recipe I found at Drinks Mixer website.  Here it is:

  Bourbon Black Hawk

  • 2 oz bourbon
  • 1 oz sloe gin

Combine the ingredients in a rocks glass with ice and stir to mix.

A pretty straightforward drink, which is, frankly, overly sweet and doesn’t allow for much of the character of the bourbon to come through.  I used Evan Williams bourbon but could hardly tell it was there through the sloe gin.  I guess it was nice to try, but I don’t expect to make this one again.

As for the brisket, well, it turned out rather nicely!


Day 103, Cocktail 102

“Well Portland Oregon and sloe gin fizz
If that ain’t love then tell me what is
Well I lost my heart it didn’t take no time
But that ain’t all. I lost my mind in Oregon

In a booth in the corner with the lights down low
I was movin’ in fast she was takin’ it slow
Well I looked at him and caught him lookin’ at me
I knew right then we were playin’ free in Oregon

Next day we knew last night got drunk
But we loved enough for the both of us
In the morning when the night had sobered up
It was much too late for the both of us in Oregon

Well sloe gin fizz works mighty fast
When you drink it by the pitcher and not by the glass
Hey bartender before you close
Pour us one more drink and a pitcher to go

And a pitcher to go [repeat]”

Well, a sloe gin fizz worked for Loretta Lynn and Jack Black.  The above lyrics are from their song Portland, Oregon which is on Loretta’s Van Lear Rose album.  I know, it’s hard to imagine Loretta Lynn doing a duet with Jack Black, but then again I never understood Julia Roberts interest in Lyle Lovett.

So, the last time I had a sloe gin fizz was the 1981 Engineering Formal, affectionately known as the Gear Ball.  My date requested them for this BYOB event (that figures, she was a Tri Delt after all).  Maybe if I had had the same outcome as Loretta and Jack I might have felt better about drinking these all night long…

Just what is sloe gin anyway?  Traditionally it was essentially gin infused with sloe berries, which are the fruit of the blackthorn.  Unfortunately, I didn’t have any sloe berries handy (as you know, I certainly had the gin), so I used Du Bouchett Creamy Head Sloe Gin.  This is made with distilled grain alcohol flavored with sloe berries and other sweeteners.  Something tells me that the traditional method yields a better product.  If you’ve ever made your own sloe gin I’d love to hear about it!

  Sloe Gin Fizz

  • 1-1/2 oz sloe gin
  • 1 oz lemon juice
  • 1/8 oz bar syrup
  • selzter water

Combine the ingredients in a shaker with ice.  Shake, shake, shake to mix and chill.  Strain into a collins glass filled with ice cubes and top with seltzer water.

To be honest, the Du Bouchett is just a tad to sweet and red for my taste.  I could get through one, but not something to drink all night by a long shot.  I’ll consider this to be taking one for team.


Day 72, Cocktail 71

Tuesday nights are one of my nights to make dinner.  Since its summer, that usually means the grill gets fired up and tonight was no exception.  Steaks were on the menu (nice, 1-1/2″ thick NY Strips) and whenever I’m cooking, especially over live fire, I like to have a cocktail nearby (hey, you have to be ready to put out the flare ups!).  I was in the mood for something with gin (since the Bombay was still sitting out on the bar), so I pulled down the Cocktail Bible and looked up drinks under gin in the index.  Wow, I thought, there’s a Slow Comfortable Screw – I didn’t know that was made with gin.  I flipped to the page with it, and well, it’s made with gin, Sloe Gin to be precise.  What the heck, I decided, let’s give it a whirl.  What you see below is my twist on this popular favorite.

  Slow Comfortable Screw

  • 2 oz sloe gin
  • 2 oz orange juice
  • seltzer water

Fill a chilled pint glass about 2/3 full with ice cubes.  Add the sloe gin and orange juice and then top with selter water.  Stir and garnish with an orange slice.

To be honest with you, this was just too sweet for my taste.  In fact, the last time I had sloe gin was a sloe gin fizz my sophomore year of college at the engineering formal (hey, its what my date wanted).  The bottle I have now has been hanging around the Twilight Lounge for a few years now and was way in the back of the cabinet.  On the plus side, though, the steaks and garlic cheese mashed potatoes were excellent!