132. Apple Toddy

132. Apple Toddy - Hero

First off, baked apples are good on their own. So, when this recipe called for dunking one into alcohol, I expected it to be delicious. Correctly. I used the Joy of Cooking recipe for a baked apple. Because the Joy of Cooking is my everything.

In the latest Apple news, the company has branched out from computers and technology into the new field of books about computers and technology. Namely, themselves. Super nice photography in here, but I feel like the price tag is pretty unjustified. Sort of how I feel about their new products, too, but that’s another blog. It is pretty though.

132. Apple Toddy - Ingredients

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166. Brandy Champerelle

166. Brandy Champerelle - Hero

Well, this drink finally puts to rest the question of whether or not you can have too much of a good thing. The answer is, undoubtedly, yes. A disappointing answer, but the answer nonetheless. I’ll have to think up a new favorite alcohol. Sorry, Angostura.

This one’s a bit of a stretch, but bear with me. We’ve had too many articles about Brandy, so I tried Champerelle. Nothing. But, “champerelle” sounds like “champignon” which is French for “mushroom.” BOOM. (Sorry. I’ll do better next time.)

166. Brandy Champerelle - Ingredients

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20. Curaçoa Punch

20. Curacoa Punch - Hero

Well, I did a whole bunch of these last weekend, and then, as a side effect, totally forgot to write any posts. Perhaps we should do fewer than five at a time. Hrm.

I was excited about this one! I’ve been digging the use of the curaçao in all of the cocktails recently. Was my excitement justified? Eh, kinda. Though it will certainly be good to move away from this liquor only from a spelling perspective — the fact that he spells it differently confuses my brain every time. Or maybe that’s the alcohol.

As news stories about punching are generally never good, I was happy to come across this one. Though it’s really a stretch. Nicole Scherzinger wanted to punch someone on X Factor because their performance was so good. I guess. Confusingly, the clip on the site doesn’t actually have that part in it. But he did sing very well.

20. Curacoa Punch Ingredients

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213. Brandy Straight

213. Brandy Cocktail

Well, I’m back from a slightly extended summer break! I’ve got a number of drinks lined up, so we should be a little less last minute than we have in the past. Not that you’d know that, I guess — the secret’s out!

Anyways, sometimes Jerry Thomas is kind of odd. Or maybe it’s just the 1800s? Not sure. In any case, this drink is definitely one of the stranger ones, for multiple reasons. One: does this “recipe” even need to be codified? Two: was the term he mentions common at the time? Three: should bartenders, especially those concerned with highly crafted cocktails, really condone this type of drinking? Four: What does he mean by “safe?”

On the news front, everything seems to be going to hell generally, so you might just need to order a drink and keep the bottle. almost 50,000 acres of country burned by wildfires this week alone, massive floods in Louisiana, and probably other things equally terrible that I either don’t know about or was too upset to read about. So, stay sharp out there, and help out where you can. Donating blood is always a great option, as well as donating money to good causes, if you have some to spare.

Also, all emphasis is added by Jerry Thomas, not me, in the following recipe.

213. Brandy Cocktail Ingredients

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107. Brandy Cocktail

Top Down Brandy Cocktail

Well, I’ve found my new favorite cocktail. Just a variation on a theme, but this is a delicious drink, and one I will start ordering in bars to see if anyone will make one for me. As with the Gin Cocktail, there is both a regular and a “Fancy” version, made the same but presented differently, and that will be posted in short order as well.

I talked about Brandy Clark last time I had a drink that involved the word “Brandy,” and while she did release a new music video recently, this time I’ll talk about the very slightly more appropriate Brandy. I don’t really know who any of these people are in this article, or really what they’re talking about, but the general theme is that social media is awkward, and deleting things is useless because it’ll always get out there either way.

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34. St. Charles’ Punch

St-Charles-Punch-1

Happy Fourth of July to all my US readers! And, happy fourth of July to all the rest of you. (No reason not to celebrate the day, I say.) In honor of this occasion, another delicious punch from a very American hero — I’ve said it before, but just to note again — the Bartender’s Guide is the first American cocktail handbook. A piece of history! And this drink is very patriotically colored. Now go make yourself a glass, and watch the fireworks.

No super interesting news stories today (other than my realization that we are just ten years away from the 250th birthday of the United States, which is exciting and also surprising that it hasn’t even been that long), so instead, a quick quote about the inspiration for this drink. It’s apparently named after the St. Charles Hotel in New Orleans at the time. Generously described in Mary Cable’s Lost New Orleans:

The St. Charles was certainly no common structure. It was taller than any building in New Orleans — six stories, surmounted by a gleaming white dome that could be seen for miles up and down the river. According to Norman’s 1845 guidebook, “The effect of the dome upon the sight of the visitor, as he approaches the city, is similar to that of St. Paul’s in London.” Mr. Norman, beside himself with admiration, went on to speak of the “indescribable effect of the sublime and matchless proportions of this building upon all spectators — even the stoical Indian and the cold and strange backwoodsman, when they first view it, are struck with wonder and delight.”

Sadly, it no longer exists. Drink to its memory!

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4. Mississippi Punch

Mississippi-Punch-2

Oy, it’s a hot one today. Cool down and relax with Jerry Thomas’ latest. I have to imagine this is named after the state which has hot, muggy weather all summer long. Only one cure, since there wasn’t air conditioning in 1862 — alcohol.

In Mississippi today, the case of three civil rights workers being burned in 1964, dubbed the “Mississippi Burning” case, has been officially closed. The last person was convicted in 2005, so someone will have to explain to me the legal parts of this.

Mississippi-Ingredients

4. Mississippi Punch

(Use large bar glass.)

  • 2 oz. of brandy.
  • 1 oz. of Jamaica rum.
  • 1 oz. of Bourbon whiskey.
  • 1 oz. of water.
  • 1½ table-spoonful of powdered white sugar.
  • ¼ of a large lemon.
  • Fill a tumbler with shaved ice.
  • The above must be well shaken, and to those who like their draughts “like linked sweetness long drawn out,” [Sounds very southern to me.] let them use a glass tube or straw to sip the nectar through. The top of this punch should be ornamented with small pieces of orange, and berries in season.

Tasting Notes:

BN: This was mostly good. I just read a book on the history of the Old Fashioned, and apparently there was a long period in the middle of the 1900s where people threw all kinds of fruit in them and they tasted a little sweet but still bourbon-y. I’ve never had one of those, specifically, but I think this is what that would taste like. The bourbon came through strongly (less so the other alcohols), and it was certainly fruity. Though not citrusy, really, oddly. Nowhere near as good as his other punches, though.

This also brought up some process questions for me. Why so much shaved ice? It waters things down so quickly, especially when it’s hot. Secondly, the amounts in this recipe were rather odd. It’s 5 oz. of alcohol, which is a lot for one drink, but it’s not really enough liquid for two. We split it, but the pours were light. Was it for a solo drinker? Finally, what was the purpose of his guide? Was it for bartenders to be ready if someone came in and ordered a “Mississippi Punch?” Or was he just sharing ideas for them to offer, not receive.

I do love the “linked sweetness” line, though.

PiC: It’s got some bite! It is a touch too alcoholic for me, but not bad. Kind of like a Jerry Thomas Long Island Iced Tea. (WHY DON’T ALL HIS PUNCHES USE RASPBERRY SYRUP?!)

Mississippi-Punch-3

21. Roman Punch

1-Roman-Punch

I’ll start this entry out by saying this is one of the top three Jerry Thomas concoctions I’ve made so far. And the thing all of those (this, 2. Brandy Punch, and 12. Champagne Punch) have in common? The raspberry syrup. So, apparently that’s just the best.

In the Phillippines, they just elected their first transgender politician, Geraldine Roman. As there are no openly LGBT politicians in the nation until now, this is a big step forward! Not much else to report, other than a lot of news about the new Uncharted video game which I guess has a character named Roman.

5-Roman-Punch-Ingredients

21. Roman Punch

(Use large bar glass.)

  • 1 table-spoonful of sugar.
  • 1 table-spoonful of raspberry syrup [Recipe here.]
  • 1 tea-spoonful of Curaçoa.
  • 2 oz. Jamaica rum. [We decided this meant dark rum.]
  • 1 oz. brandy.
  • The juice of half a lemon.
  • Fill with shaved ice, shake well, dash with port wine, and ornament with fruits in season. Imbibe through a straw.

Roman-Punch-GIF

2-Roman-Punch

Tasting Notes:

BN: I loved this. Another easy to make recipe (just throw everything together), and so delicious. The spiced rum and raspberry mixed really nicely, and the curaçao merged in to add a bit more fruitiness. I actually could have used a little more of that, and will do so next time (a teaspoon is a really small amount). It was easy to drink and had a lot of depth of flavor. Definitely use the straw, too, as you get a better mix of flavors from the bottom than the top, and you don’t have to deal with the shaved ice. Also, I put in a little too much (way more than a dash) of port accidentally, and the straw helped with that.

PiC: I really liked this. It almost has a medicinal taste, but not in a bad way, and it doesn’t quite get there. It’s sweet but not too sweet, and of course it’s very pretty. I imagine you could make this in a big batch for a party and it would be perfect.