Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Squid Mixes: Hunter Variations

Last week's Hunter's Cocktail was highly successful in that my wife asked for the same a few days later.  I'm always happy to take requests, though I had in mind a couple of variations.  One was out of necessity.  I only had rye enough for one drink so the second would have to be bourbon.  Also, I wanted to include Angostura bitters this time.

A rye, bourbon side-by-side comparison is always meaningful.  My wife definitely preferred the rye and chose that one as hers.  The bourbon felt bigger, more bitter perhaps.  I went with one dash of the bitters for each and didn't really taste it - might try two next time.  It might also be interesting to toy with the whiskey/brandy proportions so as to bring out more cherry flavor.  I don't mind the whiskey taking prominence but it might distinguish the drink more from others with a stronger cherry flavor.

Now the question: does altering the ingredients change the name of the drink?  In this case, I would say no.  Looking online, I found Hunter Cocktail recipes with bourbon and with bitters, though interestingly orange rather than Angostura - something else to bear in mind for next time.

It did make me wonder, though, is there a word for a bitter hunter, one who didn't come back with anything to show for his/her efforts?  I couldn't find such a term.  Does anyone know of one?

Squid on the Vine

La Masseria, Puglia Primitivo 2017
My rating: 8.2
Jammy nose
Opens sweet, then bitter.
Sweet aftertaste


  1. I've discovered that drink names are mostly meaningless.
    They were doing a thing on the California Report about... some drink that was developed in Oakland (very popular drink that I am now forgetting the name of) and how many different names it actually has just because someone else decided to call it something else somewhere else.
    It's an interesting language study.

    1. Right. And it's not as if these things are patented.

      My sister took an etymology class in college and the professor was particularly interested in the origins of cocktail names. It was a long time ago so, of course, I don't remember any of it, but it would seem there's plenty of material to explore.