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Tag Archives: st. remy

Lincoln, NE – March 14, 2012

During my last trip to Lincoln I found several nice places that made up for my disappointment with Marz.  However, hands down, the best of the bunch is the Bourbon Theater.  I can assure you the next time and every time I’m in Lincoln I’ll be stopping by to see Luke Edson!

The Bourbon Theater is an interesting venue – a music club (the night I was there featured a DJ playing house, very loudly) along with an amazingingly well stocked bar and the very talented Luke Edson behind the bar.

For openers, I enjoyed that fact that Luke spent a few minutes chatting with me to find out what I like in a drink.  After our conversation he made me his twist on a Rob Roy.   Featuring Skye scotch along with Dubonnet, orange bitters and an orange twist, this was an amazing cocktail – and better than the original Rob Roy.  This wonderful smokey scotch with the orange flavors was very cohesive and well done. 

The next drink Luke made for me was the Mont Blanc, an original of his.  Here it is.

  Mont Blanc

  • 1-1/2 oz St. Remy brandy (or better)
  • 3/4 oz Bianco vermouth
  • 1/4 oz Luxardo maraschino liqueur
  • 1/4 – 1/3 oz Averna

In my notes at the time I wrote “OMG amazing!”  It’s like a boozy dessert.  Vanilla notes, a hint of cherry and an almost creamy texture.  This is, without a doubt, one of the best cocktails I’ve ever had. 

By the way, if you want to make this at home (and I will be!) you will need the use Bianco vermouth, not dry vermouth.  Bianco is a sweetened white vermouth and using dry will not yeild the same result at all!


Day 363, Cocktail 363

Friday night and another movie night for Gwen and I.  I had just purchased a box of those “Cutie” clementines and figured that they would back an excellent mixer for a cocktail.  They are slightly sweeter and less acidic than orange juice, and they fit so nicely into my lemon press, so I figured why not!  I’ve also been on a bit of a ginger kick so I wanted to incorporate that into the drink as well. 

Thus, with clementines and Domaine de Canton in mind, what to use for the base spirit?  I reached for the Rehorst gin.  I wanted something more than vodka, but didn’t want the full impact of a London Dry gin.  With it’s clean aftertaste and subtle use of juniper I knew the Rehorst would be a good choice.  Next I also pulled out the St. Remy brandy.  As I thought this cocktail through I figured I would need a bit of “darker” flavor as well to balance out the juice and ginger flavors I wanted.  So, let’s see how this worked out.


  • 1 oz Rehorst gin
  • 1/2 oz St. Remy brandy
  • 1 oz Domaine de Canton ginger liqueur
  • 1 oz clementine juice

Combine all the ingredients in a Boston shaker with ice and shake and roll to mix and chill.  Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Very nice, if I say so myself.  This really hit the spot and the flavors all worked together as I planned.  Not too sweet, with a backbeat of ginger from the Domaine de Canton and several layers of flavor from the Rehorst and St. Remy.  All in all, a very nice cocktail for clementine season!

So, I’m now down to two cocktails to had today to finish off my year long journey.  I’ll be having one with our mid afternoon dinner and then the final cocktail early this evening.  If you have a suggestion for my last cocktail, let me know!


Day 310, Cocktail 312

Ok boys and girls, let this be a lesson to you…do not let middle aged men drink and have access to bermuda shorts. 

With that said, Tuesday night I was again somewhat aimlessly wandering through the Ultimate Bar Book, looking for a cocktail for the evening.  A few pages after the not so special Barton’s Special I found Tuesday’s drink.  Thinking of Bermuda got me thinking of warm weather, summer and fun.  Yes, the pool is still buried under several feet of snow and ice, but it is March.  Spring training is under way and it won’t be long before the warm breezes reach us, the tiki torches are lit and we are on our way to summer fun.

In the meantime, the Bermuda Highball (and those guys in the funny shorts) will have to sustain me.

  Bermuda Highball

  • 1 oz gin
  • 1 oz brandy
  • 1 oz dry vermouth
  • ginger ale

Combine the gin, brandy and vermouth in a mixing glass with a few ice cubes and stir to mix.  Pour, ice and all, into a collins glass, fill with ice and top with the ginger ale.  Give a quick stir to mix.

A pretty tasty cocktail that is well balanced.  I used St. Remy brandy and Beefeater gin in this one and they both blended well with the vermouth.  There were hints of the vermouth that came through the ginger ale, with the gin and brandy playing nice supporting roles.

So breakout the shorts and get ready for summer!


Day 308, Cocktail 310

Well, with that big shindig in LA last night (and for the record, I didn’t watch a minute of it, and, actually, still don’t know who won what…seriously.  I have better things to do, like drink all these cocktails and tell you about them!) what would be a better cocktail for Sunday (at least by name) than the Hulla Balloo.  Like several of my recent efforts, this comes from Dr. Tiki at the TikiBar TV podcast.  And like all of my posts to date, it has nothing to do with the Oscars…hehe.  So, without further adieu (drum roll and dramatic announcer voiceover), I bring you the Hulla Balloo!

  Hulla Balloo

  • 2 oz brandy
  • 2 oz scotch
  • 5 oz lemonade

Combine the brandy, scotch and lemonade in a mixing glass and stir.  Pour into a tall tiki or collins glass filled with cracked ice.  Add your favorite umbrella or plastic monkey and serve.

Actually, I was pleasantly surprised by this drink.  I really thought that this particular combination of ingredients wouldn’t be quite so tasty, but it was.  You get a nice depth from the brandy (I had used St. Remy) and a pleasant, smokey taste from the Johnny Walker Red scotch that I used.  With the sweetness of the lemonade, this turns out to be just right.  Even Gwen liked it, and that really came as a surpise given the brandy and scotch in it.

So the next time your event hits Hulla Balloo territory, break one of these out for your guests!


Day 266, Cocktails 267 & 268

My journey into brandy based cocktails continues tonight with a pair of drinks that are similar but different.  However, before I dive into the cocktails, a bit about brandy.

What makes brandy (as well as cognac and armagnac) different from other spirits is that it is distilled from fermented grape juice (essentially wine) rather than grains.  Typically brandy is clear and picks up its brown color during the aging process in oak barrels (with the occasional addition of caramel coloring to provide product uniformity).  The French, being French, have specifically defined two regions of production where from the product is known as cognac and armagnac.  These two spirits are brandy, albeit very good brandy.

One last tidbit regarding brandy that you should be aware of is how aging is designated.  Unlike us Americans or the Brits, who simply put the number of years that a whiskey has been aged on the bottle, the French decided to be clever and use designations.  Those designations are:

  • V.S. (Very Special) – aged for a minimum of 2-1/2 years
  • V.O. (Very Old) – aged for a minimum of 4-1/2 years
  • V.S.O.P. (Very Superior Old Pale) – aged for as long as 10 years
  • V.V.S.O.P. (Very Very Special Old Pale) – aged longer than V.S.O.P.
  • X.O. (Extra Old) – a premium brandy or cognac

Cute, huh?

On to the drinks.  My first is the French Connection, although it does not bear any relation to the Gene Hackman flick of the same name.  In fact, I’m pretty sure Popeye Doyle wasn’t drinking brandy, but that’s just a hunch.

  French Connection

  • 2 oz brandy
  • 1 oz ameretto

Combine the ingredients in a mixing glass with ice and stir to combine and chill.  Strain into a rocks glass with an ice ball or large ice cubes.

Well, that was simple, wasn’t it?  Very similar to the Godfather  and Godmother, this drink has a nutty, boozy flavor that will warm you up.  The sweetness that the amaretto imparts makes this a worthy after dinner drink to enjoy with your desert.

Next, I decided to strike out on my own with a similar, yet different cocktail.

  Orange Toffee

  • 2 oz brandy
  • 1 oz Cointreau
  • 1 drop English Toffee extract

Combine the ingredients in a mixing glass with ice and stir to combine and chill.  Strain into a rocks glass with an ice ball or large ice cubes.

Mmmm, delicious.  A nice brandy backbone with orange and just a hint of toffee, this is also a very nice after dinner drink.  Slightly sweet because of the Cointreau, you probably won’t be drinking these all night long.  But to enjoy with a cigar after a fine meal, well, that’s just living right.

You might be wondering why I used a mixing glass when the final product ends up in a glass with ice.  Two reasons.  The first is to get a good, thorough mixing of the ingredients.  If you try to do this in the rocks glass you’ll most likely end up making a small mess (or in my case, a rather large mess).  The second is to get that initial dilution of the cocktail with water melted from the ice, especially when you use an ice ball in the drink like I do.  If you don’t have that initial dilution you will knock yourself over with the strength of the drink and won’t have nearly as pleasant an experience as you should have.