Monday, November 12, 2007

Mixology Monday!

I am excited to participate in my first Mixology Monday. For anyone who isn't aware, Paul Clarke at the Cocktail Chronicles started a great program for bloggers & mixologists. Once a month, interested folks post about that month's topic, and one of the bloggers hosts the conversation and writes up a summary. This month's theme is gin, and its being hosted by Jay Hepburn over at Oh Gosh! (the guidelines are posted here).

I love gin, so once I saw this topic I knew I was in. Here's just a sampling of our gin collection. Believe it or not, we have many more gins, they're just not all at home where I had the camera. Since we're in the gin business, we like to try other gins and we often end up buying a bot
tle unless we can try them at a bar. Plus, we like to have options for our guests (we're sort of known for that nowadays).

When is Gin not Gin?
Gins vary widely on level of flavor, the flavor components and arrangement, smoothness and texture (that's why gin is so fun). I've tried a few that you could substitute for vodka and not know the difference, and some that overpower nearly everything you mix with it. Some of the newer ones don't really meet my definition of gin - they have juniper in them, but you don't really taste it, or it isn't a dominant flavor in the spirit. It seems the government only checks the formula submittal to look for juniper, not the actual taste (that's a whole other topic).

Then there's the whole subject of how gins are made, and the differences in types of gin (Genever, London Dry, Old Tom, etc). Oh I could go on and on about gin! I think I'll have to expand on it in future posts.

Drinking Gin
To be honest, I primarily drink gin in martinis or on the rocks with a twist. However, we often make cocktails for friends and family (and on that rare occasion when I have a craving). One of my favorites cocktails with gin right now is the Bebbo Cocktail. I learned about it from Ted Haigh's excellent book, Vintage Spirits & Forgotten Cocktails.

The Bebbo Cocktail
1½ oz Gin
1 oz Fresh Lemon Juice
½ oz Honey
2 tsp Fresh Orange Juice
1 dash Angostura Bitters
Glass: cocktail

Stir all the ingredients in a shaker (without ice) until the honey has dissolved. Add ice, shake & strain into glass. Garnish with a cocktail cherry.

And for fun, I thought I'd throw in an original recipe. I've been playing around with pears a lot lately - so many great varieties available right now.

Pearadise Found
2 oz Gin
2.5 oz Pear Puree or Nectar
1 oz Lillet Blanc
Dash of Orange Bitters
Glass: champagne flute or cocktail glass

Shake all the ingredients with ice, strain into glass. Garnish with a thin strip of red pear (or a skewer of small pear chunks).

Of course, depending on what gin you use, you may have to tweak these recipes slightly.

Cheers to Gin!


Anita said...

Oh, that Bebbo looks like a Bee's Knees only yummier :D I'll have to give that a whirl

~Sonja~ said...

Hi Anita! Thanks for your comment. As Ted Haigh says in his book "the Bebbo was based on the more desirably named Bee's Knees Cocktail, but with the addition of orange juice. The Bebbo has the last laugh.... [it] may have been forgotten, but its here, whereas the Bee's Knees remains, justly, nowhere to be found."

We've really enjoyed the Bebbo, and agree with Dr. Cocktail that its far better than the Bees Knees.

Let me know if you agree!