Tag: vodka

How to taste whisky like an expert (II)

 TAGS:Let’s take our “whisky taste lesson” where we left it. Having already made it clear that the first step is to recognize the signs of smell, the following is performing a sensory evaluation. To make the sensory evaluation it is recommended to prepare something to write our annotations.

Our tasting notes are basically separated as follows: distillery, brand, age and strength to start, then appearance (color, texture and clarity) ; intensity ( on a scale of 1 to 5) ; flavor (diluted primary aromas, secondary aromas and development) and taste (mouthfeel, elemental flavor, overall flavor and finishing). Also add your comments and a score from 1 to 10.

For sensory evaluation we have to take into account the aroma and flavor of the whisky.

  • First step: Pour yourself a shot of whisky and watch it with a white wall background to evaluate its sparkle and appearance, shake to appreciate every nuance of color and describe it in your notes. You can use any term that you like. Pale gold color is the result of maturation in the barrel which has been filled several times. A half-or full- gold colored is first filling barrel ex-Bourbon ;  a polished copper colored is a whisky that has been re-accumulated in sherry wood for the last year of maturity ;  the polished mahogany, is a first charge ex-Sherry barrel, while the Crimson is a port barrel, to give examples.
  • Second step: Shake the cup again and the second spirit will show tears or droplets that cling to the glass. This will be a clear indication of the alcoholic strength of the drink. Then you must put the drink to the light to see its clarity and make corresponding entries, can be done during the addition of water. If it looks slightly hazy, whisky has not been chill-filtered; this is a good thing because the chill-filtered whisky keeps it nice and bright but takes away some elements of flavor.
  • Third step: Move the new spirit and warm the glass in your hand to smell it. The scent will come up as you while you warm the glass in your hand. Take into account how complex it is, and if you can discern any particular smell, annotate them, using comparisons based on the memories that will generate each odor. You can leave it for a minute, to settle and to be able to appreciate more flavors. Smell develops over time.
  • Step Four: Take a small sip to appreciate the flavors and the first impression is the most important for annotations. After that, put your the nose on the rim of the glass for a first odors capture, breathe fresh air for rest your nose and then get closer, this time inside the rim of the glass. You will discover new odors.
  • Step Five: Go back to try a sip and analyzes whether it is soft or viscous, if fresh, biting or dry on the palate and finally if it has body and is light. Then take another sip and after a while identify the persistence of the flavor on the palate.

Are you practicing? Tomorrow we will finish with this guide, but now is the time to try what you have learned, right? Today we recommend:

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Paddy Old Irish Whiskey 1L

 

 

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Teacher’s 1L

Some Weird Whisky cocktails

 TAGS:If you like cocktails with whisky you will always have new options to try. The possible combinations are countless, and you can?t get tired of this versatile drink that has earned his fame and glory.

However, today we won?t be talking about cocktails as famous as the Manhattan or Old Fashioned, but instead, we have been looking into cocktail books in order to find new and different drinks for you.

Let us present you some of the weirdest ones we?ve found so far :

  • Bunny’s Cocktail: Made 2 ounces of anise, 2 ounces of Gin and 2 ounces of Whisky. Stir and serve.
  • Mint Condition: It is made with 0.5 ounces of Kahlua, 0.75 ounces of peppermint schnapps, 0.75 ounces of vodka and 0.75 ounces of Whisky. The ingredients are added in a shaker with ice, stirred and served.
  • The Red Rover: Made with 0.5 ounces of Gin, 1 piece of lemon, 0.5 ounces of lemon juice, 1 piece of peach syrup and 1.5 ounces of whisky. To prepare it pour all ingredients (except lemon and peach) in a shaker with a handful of ice, shake and serve in a cocktail glass decorated with fruit pieces.
  • Scoff-Law: Made from 0.75 ounces of grenadine, .75 ounces of lime juice, 1.5 ounces of vermouth and 1.5 ounces of whisky. To prepare it you just have to shake and serve.
  • Tipperary: It is made with 0.75 ounces of Green Chartreuse, 0.75 ounces of vermouth and 1 ounce of whisky, to serve stir in a shaker and pour into a cocktail glass.
  • Tivoli: This cocktail is made with 0.5 ounces aquavit, 1 part of Campari, 0.5 ounces of vermouth, 1.5 ounces of whisky, just mix in a shaker with crushed ice and serve in a cocktail glass to enjoy.
  • Kentucky Champagne Cocktail: Made with 3 ounces of Bitter, Champagne, 0.5 ounces of peach schnapps, 1 piece of peach and 1 ounce of whisky. To prepare it mixes whisky with peach liqueur, bitters and a little crushed ice in a shaker, then serve it in a cocktail glass to fill with Champagne and garnish with peach slice.

Need a good whisky to your cocktails? Let us recommend you :

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Jameson 1L

 

 

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Grant’s 1L

The bitter: a perfect complement for your cocktail parties

 TAGS:The bitter is the ingredient that one must have in order to prepare cocktails with personality. It is also called bitters and is easily recognized for its outstanding properties and its bitter taste. It brings a very special fragrance to our drinks. Once you try it you will never prepare home cocktails without it.

The bitter was first considered as an alternative medicine, then as a digestive and finally as a special ingredient to combine with our favorite cocktails. The origin of its popular name is German and is made from herbs, ginger, pepper, lemon and gentian, among others.

Bitter generally has an alcohol percentage of 45 by volume. It lasts very long in our minibars because it is only added in small proportions with a dropper to beverages. Because of its bitter taste, it only is an ingredient for mixing with others, never to drink it on the rock or dry.

There are lots of bitters, which bring different scents and flavors, including chocolate, which is ideal for the most demanding palates. Some people consider several spirits as bitters such as Campari, the Aperol and Averna, despite being made in different ways. The Aperol was created in 1919, based on bitter oranges, gentian and rhubarb, as well as other plants and is used to prepare Aperol Spritz, another delicious cocktail.

Some of the best known bitter brands worldwide are Angostura bitter, which comes in different forms and is produced in Trinidad. The Bitter Truth is a German brand with varied flavors and aromas and the Fee Brothers bitters is produced in New York. Previously the bitter was used to develop the Italian vermouth Martini Rossi with a characteristic pinkish, served in shot glasses.

Want to spice up your cocktails with bitters? Then we recommend:

 TAGS:CampariCampari

Campari

 

 

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Martini Bianco 1L

The Glamourous Bloody Mary

The Bloody Mary is a well known cocktail. Its distinctive red color is very attractive and offers glamour to the warmer nights. Now that the weather is good, the Bloody Mary is a good alternative to mix different flavors.

Traditionally, this cocktail mixtures vodka, tomato juice, salt and black pepper, a few drops of Tabasco sauce and a little lime or lemon juice. Served very cold, it is even better with a little salt and lime on the rim of the glass. In this way, the tomato marries well with the potent flavors of Tabasco and vodka.

It supports several variations, as the spicy pepper and Tabasco can be increased or lowered according to the consumer taste. In the United States, they often replace vodka for gin and is drunk as an appetizer before lunch or dinner. No one knows the exact origin of this sweet and tasty cocktail, but according to the most widespread theory it was invented by Fernand Petiot, a bartender from the New York bar in Paris who found this formula in 1921.

Since then its fame spread to various countries across the world and started to be really popular in the U.S., where it is consumed today. His name is also curious: it is named after the daughter of Henry VIII, Mary I of England, better known as Bloody Mary. She wanted to restore Catholicism in England, causing many deaths. Here comes the Bloody marry, bloody meaningful for England.

The legend says that this cocktail, by its ingredients, is perfect to fight hangovers. I recommend it after a heavy dinner with friends.

Are you a fan of Bloody Mary? What vodka would you choose? We recommend:

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Smirnoff Red Label Screw Cap 1L

 

 

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Grey Goose Vodka 1L

New cocktails from the far East

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Hong Kong has numerous flashy cocktails, product of the characteristic ingenuity of the Far East?s inhabitants. You might dare to prepare some of them at home with ingredients you get in our store, or perhaps these cocktails will give you the expected final push that will make you undertake that trip you dreamed of so many times. If you make them at home, remember, all of them are characterized by the excellent presentation and aesthetic harmony. Think Feng Shui!

Among the most innovative cocktails we have the Super Lemon, a cocktail meant for those who truly love the citrus beverage. It is made with lemon cream, gin and lemon juice, usually served with a super bitter lemon sweet. This candy is the last touch that will transport you to your childhood, according to Antonio Lai.

The Nine Dragons is a vodka-based cocktail that was designed to pay tribute to Feng Shui. It is served in the InterContiental of Tsim Tsui, and has become very popular. It is made with nine different ingredients that represent the nine dragons Kowloon: Absolute Blue, Citron, Campari, cranberry puree, lime juice, currants, mango, grapefruit and cranberry bitters. Besides it has a very attractive look, thanks to the color Gradation.

The Dragon is surely one of the most prominent symbols of Hong Kong and the cocktail that is named after it must have something special. It is served in the Room Ning Peninsula, and made with Absolut Citron, gin, lemon juice, orange juice and syrup rubber. Its colour is striking and its fruit flavors will make you smile. Additionally, spicy cocktails to refresh your palate are an interesting option. Motox is one of them. It is made with coriander, ginger, Belvedere Citrus Vodka, Luxardo lemongrass, apple, pineapple and lemon, and you can get it at Mo Bar, in the Landmark Mandarin Oriental Hotel.

Finally, the Oolong Tea Collins has a tea extract taste, sugar and citric acid, served before pouring Absolut vodka and soda water in the glass, creating two levels of flavour and colours. Want to make Hong Kong cocktails? Then you surely need some Vodka and Gin in your personal bar.

Today we recommend two great spirits:

 TAGS:Tequila Corralejo ReposadoTequila Corralejo Reposado

Tequila Corralejo Reposado

 

 

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Armagnac Cles de Ducs V.S.O.P.

Mezcal and Tequila, one family, two drinks

The Mezcal and Tequila have so many similarities that it might be difficult at first to taste the difference. But they both have very specific production processes. It enables consumers to differentiate these two popular  Mexico?s distillates that never go out of style.

Basically, Tequila is a variety of Mezcal. Tequila is the product of an industrial process that facilitates high production volumes and contains 49% carbohydrates and chemicals and Mezcal is an alcoholic beverage free of chemical additives, 100% made with agave with traditional processes.

The Tequila is from Jalisco while Mezcal is from Oaxaca. Tequila is made from agave Tequilana Weber while Mezcal is made from agave angustifolia Haw (this agave is bigger and has more sugars)

You can recognize the Mezcal for its strong aromatic flavor and the Tequila for its neutral taste. In the Mezcal bottle you can see a worm. This is a sign of authenticity. Other name for the Tequilana agave is blue agave. The plant produces the basic liquid with which the drink is made and grows between the towns of Tequila and Tepatiplán in a mountainous area.

For the production of Tequila, the agave pulp is squeezed. The juice is then mixed with sugarcane, corn and yeast then fermented for days in steel tanks, and distilled water is added. It finally is aged in wooden barrels or tanks for two months to seven years. It is during this period that it gets its characteristic color and sold prices are based on the aging time.

There mezcal enthusiasts defend the purity and aromatic, while proponents of Tequila enjoy this beverage around the world. Be sure to try both before you choose your favorite.

And you, what do you prefer? Today I recommend one of each so you can compare, and a small dessert bonus ?

 TAGS:Mezcal Gusano RojoMezcal Gusano Rojo

Mezcal Gusano Rojo

 

 

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Jose Cuervo Especial Reposado

The rise of rum

 TAGS:The WHO shared new statistics about the average baskets in the United Kingdom. The results show a significant change in the consumer?s habits, more specifically in the alcoholic beverage consumption: it still tends to decrease.

In the UK, alcohol consumption declined for several years in-a-row. The lowest percentage was recorded in 2011. It appears that average consumers prefer to choose white rum over other drinks like champagne, which sales reduced dramatically.

The demand constantly changes and we can ask ourselves if it is a reflection of the society?s evolution. But if we take a closer look at the study we can see that blueberries, salami, e-books and even men T-shirts sales are decreasing too. Not easy under those conditions to figure a general trend from those statistics… However, let?s play a little bit and allow ourselves to imagine an explanation to the ?Rise of the White Rum?

What is pushing the UK into abandoning champagne? Champagne represents luxury, victory, effervescence, and sparkling occasions. Nowadays, it may also convey a certain idea of overdoing things. On the contrary, rum seems to fit any kind of events, from the most mundane parties to the average teenage binge drinking nights. In effect, rum has a large price range, depending on its aging and quality.

White, gold and black rum are the result of the fermentation and distillation of sugar cane. The barrels of oaks, the sugar cane quality, the aging and the distillates used are decisive in the final flavour of the beverage. If you choose a medium quality rum, you can still use it as the main ingredient of the two popular cocktails Pina colada and Cuba libre.

Would you like to experience it? Today we recommend:

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Champagne Billecart Salmon Brut Réserve

 

 

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Legendario Elixir de Cuba 7 Years

 

 

The 10 favorite drink of the gay community

 TAGS:What created the recent interest the alcohol industry showed toward the gay community? A new social fight for the industry ? Let?s be honest, the reason of this renewal of consideration is more likely to be laying on the results of a new study that revealed this breaking news: the gay population invests between 6000 and 8000 billion Euros a year in beverages in the UK. In those conditions, satisfying the tastes of this huge market might not be a bad idea. Question is, is there?s any specific ?gay community tastes?? (In terms of cocktails.) Or is it just a new marketing invention? Well, let?s give some credit to the Queerty Web Site and see what those so called favorite drinks are. 

10 – The Margarita. Faithful to his great fame all over the world, the Margarita seems to be consumed within the gay community too. The key to its success definitely is the tequila‘s quality.

9 – Granada Martini: The gay Queerty website affirms that it has been popularized thanks to resemblance with the Cosmopolitan, in term of color.

8 – The Mojito: Despite appearing simple at first, this drink hides a complex equilibrium that is hard to reach. Its Latin origins and its strong taste make it a daring cocktail that is consumed everywhere in the world. The gay community seems to drink it too.
7 ? Égalité (Equity): We already mentioned the launch of this Cremant de Bourgogne specially created for gay weddings. This New York label is known for its heart surrounded by the gay community rainbow.
6 – Dirty Martini is made with a splash of olive juice, and is garnished with olives. It tastes delicious and gives a new facet to the common Martini.

 5 – Appletini: Its flavor is very delicate, thanks to the fruits that are used as a main ingredient.  
4 – Purple Hand Beer: This drink was created in 2011 in Mexico. It is very easy to recognize thanks to the purple hand label.
3 Rosé Wine: The rosé wine is a classic and doesn?t lose its fame thanks to innovating winemakers. For example, the St. Ynez vineyard is only produced by women. Such a great progress needed to be mentioned.
2 – Two-Manhattan: Few cocktails have as much personality as this one.
1- The Cosmopolitan: Is Sex and the City a reference in terms of drinks? Finally the ultimate gay drink cocktail is the Cosmopolitan. Its invention is claimed between Miami and New York but the fact is that since its creation in the late 1980s it never went out of fashion.

Do you think the “gay drinks” really exist? Or is it just a new marketing creation? Anyway, we recommend you two good vodkas in order to try the famous cosmopolitan !

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Cosmopolitan: about cocktails

 TAGS:We start a series of articles devoted to various cocktails from around the world. From gin and tonic to bloody mary to the latest cocktails. It appears that such combinations don’t go out of style and are more alive than ever. To begin with… fancy a cosmopolitan? 

The poshest drink, preferred by Carrie Bradshaw, the protagonist of the TV show Sex and the City, a character portrayed by Sarah Jessica Parker, it does not know about trends, and survives the passing years. Madonna also made it famous in the 90s, drinking one in a bar, attracting the interest of many fans who were asking what drink it was. Regarded as a classic, the Cosmopolitan mixes up vodka, Cointreau or other liqueur with cranberry juice and lime juice, but it allows other variations. 

With these ingredients, the flavor is dry and strong because of the vodka and a bit sweet and sour thanks to the fruits. The variations of this cocktail are the Barbados Cosmopolitan, with rum as a substitute of vodka, or the Cosmopolitan Morning with flavored vodka and coffee. The trick is knowing how to combine all these ingredients with ice, shake them and serve in a rather chilly glass. 

Although different people are attributed as the creators of the colloquially named ‘Cosmo’, the bartender Cheryl Cook, from Florida, invented the recipe in the mid 80s. Then it was made with vodka, triple sec, lime drops, and some cranberry juice. 

The truth is that it’s a cocktail very easy to make, 100% American and offering sweetish flavors. It is perfect as an aperitif before dinner, so New Yorkers usually do that on weekends, or after a dinner to share with friends. In the United States it’s very popular and is said to be an aphrodisiac, so is consumed preferably among 30-35 years old women. 

What vodka do you prefer for your cosmopolitan? We recommend:

 TAGS:Grey Goose Vodka 1LGrey Goose Vodka 1L

Grey Goose Vodka 1L

 

 

 TAGS:Smirnoff Gold 1LSmirnoff Gold 1L

Smirnoff Gold 1L

Celebrities who make or launch spirits

 TAGS:The world of gastronomy is increasingly linked to actors or singers who decide to have their own cellars to make wine or elaborate spirits or sell them under their name. 

It is always an important marketing strategy that makes many people to buy this drink always under the name of a famous person. We have some remarkable examples, such as Marilyn Manson, known for leading the industrial rock band of the same name, which promoted a famous absinthe liqueur

Other colleagues, including British band Motorhead, have also been handed with the drink business and have launched wine and vodka with the name of the same band. The truth is that, both Marilyn Manson and Motorhead have successfully sold their drinks. 

The handsome actor George Clooney can do many more things right, in addition to acting. He just released his own tequila, Casamigos, together with the Cindy Crawford’s husband, Randy Gerber. In addition, the actor has written and produced the spot to advertise the drink, which has as an attraction the appearance of himself, the supermodel Cindy Crawford, her husband and partner of Clooney, Randy Gerber, and the girlfriend of the actor, Stacy Keibler

The bottle is attractive because its design is very caring and it has printed the autographs of the actor and the businessman. It costs about 33 euros. 

The world of wine offers more and more appeal to celebrities who have their own cellars and vintages. Tell that to Francis Ford Coppola, who was one of the pioneers and has already produced several bottles, as well as other popular faces, such as the actors Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, the Spaniard Antonio Banderas or singers such as Julio Iglesias or Lluís Llach.

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The Famous Grouse 1L

 

 

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Smirnoff Gold 1L

Photo: Flickr