Thursday, July 2, 2009
After I blew a chunk of change on the ingredients for the Rosita, I realized that my goal of making a new cocktail every night could conceivably get me into a lot of trouble. My solution was to take stock of all the booze in my liquor cabinet, find all the drinks that I could make, and work my way through them before buying more hooch. As I finished bottles, I would replace them, and as I ran out of available drinks, I would add to my selection. Over all, it seemed to me that this was the only way to avoid going broke on this venture.
Apart from the vermouth, Campari, and tequila that I picked up during my Rosita buying spree, I had the following (all in fifths):
1/4 bottle of Rogue Gin
3/4 bottle of New Amsterdam Gin
1 bottle of Llord's creme de menthe
1 bottle of Hiram Walker creme de cacao
3/4 bottle of Lucid Absinthe
1/3 bottle of ouzo
1 bottle Cynar
1 bottle Aperol
1 bottle Harvey's Bristol Cream
1 bottle each homemade honey, lime, and blueberry liqueurs
1 bottle Santa Clara rompope
1 small flask Zubrowka Polish grass vodka
It was an odd list, and I had gathered it in my normal, disorganized way. The flask of Polish grass vodka was an engagement gift from my wife, and I've regularly refilled it over the years. The Bristol Cream, creme de menthe, and creme de cacao were all part of various recipes, and the rompope was an impulse buy, based on the fact that I like egg-based liqueurs. I made the honey, blueberry and lime liqueurs last year, when I was able to get grain alcohol from Connecticut. The Cynar and Aperol both came from one frenzied visit to the liquor store, when I felt the need to find the weirdest booze in the joint. The Rogue gin -- which is really good, by the way -- came courtesy of a Rogue representative who wanted me to review it for a blog, and the New Amsterdam was purchased after a taste testing at the same local liquor store.
At any rate, my bar was -- as I might expect -- well stocked with the bizarre, while decidedly lacking in the mundane necessities (like rum, vodka, whiskey...). Luckily, The Ultimate A-to-Z Bar Guide was chock full of gin recipes, which meant that I would be able to go a while before I had to buy anything else.
The artillery cocktail is simplicity itself. Kissing cousin to the martini, it is two parts gin and one part sweet vermouth, shaken and strained. It is a beautiful taupe color and looks particularly sophisticated in a cocktail glass. In terms of taste, it is slightly fruity and slightly sweet with a gin kick that let's you know that you aren't screwing around. All in all, a nice drink.
Oddly enough, there are a bunch of gin and sweet vermouth cocktails. With a cherry garnish, it is called a "Gypsy cocktail" or a "club cocktail." With an orange slice, it's called a "Homestead."
(from The Ultimate A-to-Z Bar Guide)
2 ounces gin
1 ounce sweet vermouth
Shake ingredients with ice and strain into chilled cocktail glass.