Taming the heat … A Boudreauing Warm Weather Drink Challenge

by KeithP on July 15, 2010

After our recent post highlighting the virtues of a good warm weather drink and in particular my touting of the Paper Plane as just such a drink I decided that this theme was worth some additional exploration – for one thing, that blanket of heat and humidity is firmly covering our fine city thus, crying out for more drinks and second, well, it’s kind of a fun topic to explore.

Far from scientific and equally distant from any sort of classic drinking set of rules, theSpeakista’s criterion for what makes up a good warm weather bracer are pretty easy – is it refreshing/does it cool you down; does it revitalize you/-re-charge the “batteries” after they have been sapped by the heat; finally is it interesting or different? This later category is highly subjective … essentially, is there more to the drink then say just mixing up a gin and tonic (nothing wrong with a G&T, I love ‘em especially on a hot day)?

This week I gave two new drinks (as always, new to me, but not new to most every body else out there) a try in an attempt to find another candidate to add to our Warm Weather Drink Line-up.

Marmalade Sour
Recipe adapted from the original created by Jamie Boudreau (sourced from Jamie’s Spirits and Cocktails blog)

•    3 oz cachaca (Leblon brand was used)
•    1 oz fresh lemon juice
•    2 dashes orange bitters (Regan’s Orange Bitters No. 6)
•    1 egg white
•    2 TBS of orange marmalade
Garnish: no garnish
Glass: coupe
Tools: mixing glass and tin, Hawthorne strainer and fine mesh strainer

Assembly: Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker and dry shake for approximately 10 seconds.  Add plenty of ice to the shaker and shake aggressively for at least 20 seconds until well chilled and double strain into the serving glass.

The verdict: As of late I have been making what seem to be tanker size quantities of the Flor de Jalisco, a fantastic tequila drink created by Joaquin Simo of Death & Co. (original inspiration for me to try provided by Paul and Marleigh), for me and the Boss to enjoy.   A quick glance back through Paul’s write up on the drink reminded me of Jamie’s sour recipe and as I am always in search of new ways to use cachaca decided to enter it into our Warm Weather Drink Challenge.  First and foremost it is a beautiful drink to look at and my little pic is horrible relative to Jamie’s fine work.  The egg white provides a nice light white head to the top of the drink and this foam lingers throughout sipping providing an interesting mouth feel to the experience.  The interesting flavor profile of the Leblon comes through strongly but is well blended with the citrus.  I found the drink to tilt heavily to the tart side of the spectrum but this was likely due to an overly tart batch of lemons in my possession at the time of mixing.  This drink strikes me as a great early evening, spring or summer type of drink.  I will give this one another go in the not too distant future and see if the “tartness” of the profile can be worked around.

theSpeakista’s Rating: 3 1/2 stars (out of 5)

Next up, we needed a crack at some gin.  The Pegu Club is a favorite of mine and in my humble estimation a perfect warm weather drink.  Equal parts of citrus tartness and boozy backdrop in perfect harmony, it will pick you up when you are feeling zapped.  It was in the spirit of the Pegu that I went exploring for another gin based candidate and as I am apt to do when in search of inspiration went exploring the Esquire Drinks Database.

Bronx Cocktail
Recipe sourced from the Esquire Drinks Database

•    2 oz London dry gin (Beefeater was used)
•    1 oz fresh orange juice
•    1/2 tsp French vermouth (Noilly Prat Dry was used)
•    1/2 tsp Italian vermouth (Carpano Antica was used)
Garnish: no garnish
Glass: cocktail glass
Tools: mixing glass and tin, Hawthorne strainer and fine mesh strainer

Assembly: Combine all ingredients in the cocktail shaker and shake hard for at least 20 seconds until well chilled and double strain into the serving glass.

The verdict: Oh my, this bad boy is DRY.  I had assumed, incorrectly, that the orange juice would serve as a sweetening force but the gin, especially this gin, is in firm control.  The aroma is strong with the herbal notes of the gin and the taste yields the same impression.  The two vermouths are all but non-existent on the palate.  As David notes in his write up of this drink it clearly designed as a warm weather bracer and I would agree it has the power to cool you down.  For the effort of making this drink I would prefer to just make a nice Martini – this is not a knock on this drink but more a comment on effort versus outcome.

theSpeakista’s Rating: 3 stars (out of 5)

With these two drinks under our belt (as well as the aforementioned Paper Plane) I feel a little wind in our sails … time for a few more candidates and a few more tests.  No worries, this blanket of heat will be lingering for some time.

theSpeakista asks:

1. Warm weather bracers … what’s in your line up?

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Sam July 16, 2010 at 11:31 am

I guess a few of us have the Bronx on our brains. Check out this recipe redux (http://captainmcboozy.com/2010/07/14/bronx-cocktail/). To my palette, it has some greater appeal. As to other coolers, I had a kickass grapefruit collins last night at Weather Up (http://newyork.seriouseats.com/2010/04/mix-it-up-the-grapefruit-collins-at-weather-up-cocktail-recipe.html) and followed it with a skunky, but awesome, fernet branca and genever fizz (my half-cocked idea). Also, Regan’s Tart Gin Cooler is pretty awesome as well. Grapefruit really does it for me on a hot one. Stay cool.

KeithP July 16, 2010 at 5:22 pm

Thanks Sam. I guess great minds must be thinking a like ala views on the Bronx. I saw Laren’s post a while back on the Grapefruit Collins and made one up … need to try it again (if memory serves, it was a good warm weather bracer. Regan’s Tart Gin Cooler? Not familiar with this one so I’ll have to do a little diggin’

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