Wednesday, September 16, 2020
Squid Mixes: Apple Daiquiri
An apple daiquiri combines light rum, Calvados, lemon juice and sugar syrup with an apple slice garnish. I got my recipe from the New York Bartender's Guide. The result was nice, though I thought it could have been more appley and my wife would have preferred less lemon. She did say it might be nice with nutmeg and/or cinnamon - like apple pie perhaps?
Calvados is an apple or pear brandy from Normandy. The brand I used, Boulard, is apple-based. David Lebovitz uses it a lot in his Drinking French recipes so I picked up a bottle. At the store, I learned I've been pronouncing the word incorrectly. I'd always assumed the second syllable was emphasized, as in Spanish. But no! The first syllable carries the emphasis and the second A is a schwa. It's Calva for short. That's easier to remember.
Bitters of the Month: Cherry
After we settle on a favorite vermouth (we're close), we'll play with bitters in our quest for the perfect Manhattan. The standard choice is Angostura, though both orange and Peychaud's are acceptable alternatives. Anything beyond those would be venturing into house-tailored cocktail territory. As such, trying out cherry bitters in this context is getting a little ahead of the game for me but I needed a reasonable test of the bitters anyway.
My concern, after tasting the cherry bitters with gin alone, was that while there was certainly cherry flavor exhibited, it might not hold up so well with stronger ingredients. Whiskey is a nice base liquor for such a test. It always holds its own, yet it also leaves room for the other players to express themselves. In this case, I have to say there really wasn't much cherry flavor. The aroma was there but the taste itself too subtle.
My wife suggested that the bitters might help to enhance the flavors of other cherry-based ingredients - perhaps worth exploring someday.