We recently made orgeat and continue to find new ways to enjoy it. With the weather being super hot here in Portland, we figured now would be a good time put our orgeat to good use. This cocktail is a simple bourbon drink from Erick Castro of Polite Provisions.
2 oz. Bourbon
½ oz. Orgeat
2 dashes Angostura bitters
Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass with ice and stir. Strain into a coupe and garnish with a lemon peel.
This may be our favorite orgeat cocktail to date because it has every element in perfect balance: spicy (we intentionally chose a spicier bourbon), sweet and floral (orgeat), bitters, and just a hint of citrus from the garnish. Also, it is dead simple to make, which is wonderful in hot weather when it feels like everything is in slow motion.
Congress (Bar Tab)
for The New Yorker
I made a little spot illo for a bar review in The New Yorker. Much of the work was already done for me—Congress has gorgeous custom-designed wallpaper which inspired my final piece. Thanks AD Jordan Awan.
Hot weather calls for cold beer. We call for beer that’s been aged in bourbon barrels and Breakside Brewery answers.
This beer is heavy on the vanilla and cherry flavors, but manages to retain some lightness due to its sparkly carbonation. This was a limited-release beer that we managed to score several months ago because the brewery is local (in Portland). According to Breakside, “it is 80% English old ale aged in Bourbon barrels for seven months and 20% freshly brewed English strong ale.”
We thought this beer was good but not great. Its flavor profile is familiar territory for anyone who regularly drinks bourbon-barrel aged beer, which is not a bad thing, but it is less interesting than we had hoped. It reminded us vaguely of root beer. It’s a dark amber color with a loose head when freshly poured.
2 oz. Bourbon
½ oz. Liber & Co. Texas Grapefruit Shrub
Thoroughly muddle the cucumber pieces in the bottom of a cocktail shaker. Add ice, bourbon, and grapefruit shrub and shake vigorously to combine. Strain into a chilled coupe and garnish with mint and another cucumber slice.
We love the cooling effect of the cucumber on an otherwise strong blend of flavors. Make sure to use a cucumber at the peak of freshness, and the mint garnish is important for the palate as well. You can slap it against your palm before placing in the glass to release its oils.
Happy long weekending!
(photos by Cameron Carnes)
We recently got a chance to sample some cocktail syrups from Liber & Co., a small business out of Austin, Texas. We love the opportunity to experiment with new ingredients, and cocktail syrups are always a fun element. We’ve been most excited about their Texas Grapefruit flavor because grapefruit and bourbon complement each other so well. Today was also 99 degrees in Portland, which made it the perfect day to mix up a summery cocktail.
2 oz. Bourbon
¾ oz. Liber & Co. Texas Grapefruit Shrub
2 oz. Sparkling wine
Thoroughly muddle cucumber in the bottom of a cocktail shaker. Add ice, bourbon, and grapefruit shrub and shake vigorously for at least 30 seconds. Strain into a highball glass filled with ice and top with sparkling wine. Garnish with a mint sprig and cucumber.
Dreamed up by Rachel while commuting in the 95+ degree weather, this cocktail helped us combat the heat. The grapefruit and bourbon are wonderful summer flavors, and the cucumber and sparkling wine add a refreshing and smooth quality to the drink. We can’t wait to try out more of Liber & Co.’s cocktail syrups.
*Even though this nightcap was on Liber & Co.’s tab, we will always review products honestly. Contrary to popular belief, free drinks don’t automatically taste better.
This cocktail recipe was conceived on the bus on the way home from work. What, you don’t think about making cocktails during your commute?
This drink is like a sweet iced coffee without the syrupy texture that can creep into flavored coffee. The orgeat has such a light floral and nutty balance complemented by the whiskey’s depth. We recommend using Stumptown cold brew coffee for its strong but smooth punch. This is an excellent summer day or evening drink.
One thing about keeping up a cocktail blog is that one can never have enough glassware. With so many different types of drinks, we need a wide variety of glasses—and of course we want them to be stylish and durable, too.
Ravenhead is a family glass business founded in 1892 in St. Helens, England. They began making art deco-style domestic glassware in the 1930s. We love supporting companies with such long and interesting pasts, and were delighted to receive a sampling of Ravenhead’s party glasses.
The designs are classic. We love having good-looking glassware that doesn’t distract from the look of the drink itself. The glass is well weighted in the hand and we can attest to its sturdiness, since we accidentally knocked two against each other when washing them and they didn’t break or scratch.
Even though this post was sponsored by Ravenhead, we will always review products honestly. Contrary to popular belief, free products aren’t automatically better.