As we are in a period of renewing certain relationships, most notably in the context of our little adventure herein, we might as well renew our relationship with MxMo — so appropriate for us to do so as it was this venue that provided a newbie blogger like theSpeakista a chance to interact with other like-minded drink-o-philes.
As we wade back into the deep end of posting on our favorite topic we find ourselves feeling the heat, this time with a theme provided by the Muse of Doom at the Feu de Vie site and for this latest MxMo we have “Fire” as the theme. Bring the heat! Bring the Fire! Get acquainted with the theme posting here … once more onto the breach of inspiration, dear friends …
Lacking any sort of creativity what so ever our minds turned not to the wow inspiring pyrotechnics of a garnish; a gleeful Tiki-inspired creation using a mind-altering blend of high proof rums set ablaze in a fanciful cup … rather, we simply thought of heat on the palate. Boring, static and yet, something that works for us – when done properly. Like many I have come face-to-face with the almost ubiquitous “chili” infused version of a Margarita (or similar offering) when eating out on the town. For the most part, I now shun these infused drinks as the heat imparted by whatever infusion undertaken always seems to overwhelm the entire drink. While we dig the heat, too much is too much. However, maybe there is something to this formulation that can be tweaked to create a nice little warm weather sipper (to match the heat we have been feeling temperature-wise here in the Big Apple)?
Inspiration if you can call it that started from a recent finger walking trip through the pages of the PDT Cocktail book and a drink called the Beer and Smoke (cocktail). Sampled recently it left me a bit wanting. In connection with this theme and if our memory serves, a keen desire in our MxMo posts to do “original” theSpeakista drinks, we set about to create a smoky (and heat centered) beer-based cocktail. The drink below began first with the smoky element because as we all know, before there is fire there must be smoke. Torn between the two typically smoky elements I have around – mezcal and Islay scotch – it was the former which came out on top as our spirit center. How then to incorporate heat? Hhmmmm … I got it!! Maybe add heat to an already “spicy” component? So we did by heat infusing red chili flakes into our base cinnamon syrup. After a touch of noodling around the edges out came our first “Fire” driven drink … Setting Fire to the Rain.
In many ways this drink seems to work for me. The strong vegetal and smoky base lends structure to the formula against a nice citrus backdrop. The heat? Well, that is definitely there as the spicy heat is just wonderful; what we love about this is how the heat hits you – it warms the palate, lips and tongue and then as you sip you begin to feel a nice sense of “heat” throughout your body. The matiness of the beer is a nice binding element to the overall drink.
As our first offering, we hope you enjoy?
Setting Fire to the Rain
Recipe created (he thinks) by theSpeakista
• 2 oz mezcal
• 1 oz fresh squeezed lime juice
• 1/2 oz fresh squeezed grapefruit juice
• 1/2 oz Fire Syrup (see note below)
• 1 tsp. rich simple syrup
• ~2 oz or so of a light to medium lager style beer (Stella Artois was used)
Glass: chilled rocks glass
Tools: mixing glass and tin, bar-spoon, Hawthorn strainer and tea strainer
Assembly: Add all of the ingredients (save the beer) to the mixing glass and tin containing ice and shake hard for about 10 seconds or until well chilled. Double strain the mixture into the serving glass containing a large block piece of ice and top with the beer. Ah … the heat.
Fire Syrup (short hand version): add 1 teaspoon of red chili flakes to a glass containing 1 ounce of cinnamon syrup (scale as needed) and heat for approximately 10 seconds in a microwave; allow the mixture to steep for a half hour before use.
Good enough for first foray back into MxMo? Possibly. As is the case though, our drink-making thoughts tend towards boozy stirred drinks and so we thought to try to leverage the aforementioned spicy syrup one more time and mix it up into an interesting rum-based version of an Old Fashioned.
Kinda nice. The mixture of various vanilla like elements from spirits and sweetening agents plays off nicely against, what ultimately was quite tame, the “fire” elements. The combination of spirits seemed to mellow the heat and yet the heat seemed to build as we continued to sip. Not too bad we think.
In their defense …
Recipe created (he thinks) by theSpeakista
• 1/2 oz Cockspur 12-year old, Bajan Crafted rum rum
• 1/2 oz Cruzan Black-Strap rum
• 1/2 oz Four Roses bourbon
• 1/3 oz Smith & Cross rum
• 1 tsp. Fire Syrup (see above)
• 1 tsp. Vanilla syrup
• 1 small piece of Jalapeno pepper
• 2 dashes of mole bitters
Glass: rocks glass
Tools: mixing glass, bar-spoon, tea strainer and julep strainer
Assembly: Take the small piece of pepper and lay it in the palm of your hand and with the back of your barspoon lightly tap on the chili (to release some of the oils) and add to your mixing glass (be sure now to wash your hands). Add the remainder of the ingredients plus plenty of cracked and non-cracked ice and stir for a minute or longer and then let the mixture sit for about 30 seconds in the glass before double straining said mixture into your serving glass (that has a large cubed/block piece of ice).
So there you have it … our first go at a MxMo event after our long self-imposed exile and we feel spent. Hopefully, you have found the above potentially worthwhile to try out?
Thank you to the Muse for hosting this event. We hope to see you back here soon.