Monday, August 22, 2011

(Review) Hendrick's Gin 88 proof

Mystique: 1-10 points
Score: 9 Nifty bottle, Interesting reputation

Color: 1-10 points
Score: 10 I think Gin and Vodka are cheating here

Scent: 1-10 points
Score: 9 light juniper botanicals, also orange, coriander, fresh scent

Initial impression: 1-10 points
Score: 10 so far seems quite excellent

Mouthfeel: 1-10 points
Score: 9 thicker than regular gin then disappears

Taste: 1-10 x 4 points
Score: 36 pepper, cucumber, orange, lemon, rose, clean taste, fast burn then gone

Raw Score: 83 points

Bonus: Value 1-10 points
Score: 9 $34 a bottle, right in line with other premium gins

Total Score: 92 points

An interesting gin. I could really leave it at that and do it justice, but It doesn't really tell you about it now does it. This gin is like one of your friends relationships when you're wondering how that happened and they say well it's complicated and leave it at that. As if you're some 6 yr old that won't understand grown up things. Although the description will fit I'm not about to treat you that way. Hendrick's Gin doesn't think you should be treated that way either and they're pleased to tell you all about this gin of theirs and why it's different. The website is rather amusing and looks like a Terry Gilliam segment of Monty Python's Flying Circus. Hendrick's is a Scottish gin. Hell you say? No Really it is. It's a pleasant, smooth gin that's not too juniper and has an interesting aftertaste. I came to learn while drinking Hendrick's that my tongue associates cucumbers with salt. That's the big difference, a very slight taste of cool cucumbers. I kept thinking it was a salty flavor, but there's no salt in it. Hence my discovery. It's not cucumber infused and doesn't taste like cucumbers, it's very slight and you might miss it. If you make it in a gin and tonic with a cucumber slice it becomes more prevalent. It and the rose petal aroma are very, very, ethereal. You only notice them like a ghost walked into the room. What was that! A strange encounter. You will not mistake this for something else. It's flavor is Gin. Juniper and Botanicals. If you like Tanq 10 or Bombay Sapphire this is worth a try. A light almost refreshing gin that has become my top shelf favorite.

Friday, August 5, 2011

(Review) Goslings Family Reserve Old Rum 80 proof

Mystique: 1-10 points
Score: 10 Wow! wood box with straw, wax dipped, numbered bottle

Color: 1-10 points
Score: 10 Jewel Like, amber, shimmering

Scent: 1-10 points
Score: 9 vanilla, oak, molasses, hint of citrus

Initial impression: 1-10 points
Score: 10 impressive, smells intoxicating

Mouthfeel: 1-10 points
Score: 9 tingly on the tongue, slightly oily

Taste: 1-10 x 4 points
Score: 40 smooth, tart, oily, big molasses, no burn

Raw Score: 89 points

Bonus: Value 1-10 points
Score: 6 $65 a bottle, spendy, received as a gift

Total Score: 95 points

Here's some booty for you. It comes packed in a box that looks like Indiana Jones himself absconded with it from that fabled secret warehouse. Rum that's kept under glass, well Plexiglas. A flat black bottle, sealed with wax, that's apparently hand numbered. Marketing gimmick aside, this Rum deserves it's special treatment. Goslings has been making high quality Bermuda Rum since 1860. According to their website they have had their base store in Bermuda for 157 years and this Rum is proof that they know what they're doing (Not that Black Seal wasn't enough). It's sipping rum, like fine bourbon or scotch. Please don't mix it in a cocktail. Unwinding with a little on the rocks is all you need. The flavor is smooth and complex, it's got those nuances that you can tell it's carefully crafted. A tingle on the tongue, smokey molasses, with a hint of spice, oak and citrus. Balance is the word that comes to mind and the quality of flavor doesn't make me think of pirates like rum usually does, but perhaps a formal dinner at the governor's mansion. There's nothing rough and tumble about this. It's refined and almost proper. It makes me want to do this I must admit Gosling's Black Seal is my favorite rum and this seems to be the ultimate it could become if cared for and aged to completion.

I received it as a gift and as a gift it fits the bill perfectly. It has great presentation factor and most people have not tasted rum this good. It will be a new experience for most, and I must thank my friend Dave again for a present I probably wouldn't buy for myself.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

(Cocktail Recipe) The Scorpion

GET OVER HERE! Not for a FATALITY, but a great way to beat the summer heat. Summertime is the time for classic Tiki Style tropical cocktails, they're fun, they're tasty and they usually pack a whallop. The Scorpion is no different. I know, I know, these type cocktails are too sweet you say and they wind up being syrupy and not thirst quenching. That's not true if you do them correctly. Most bars operate on profit margins so thin they cut costs where ever they can, and unfortunately that usually means watered down drinks with lots of fruit juice and little of anything else. Check out the classic scorpion recipe.

1 oz light rum
1 oz brandy
1 oz orange juice
1.5 oz or half a lime juice
1/2 oz Orgeat Syrup

Some recipes call for powdered sugar or simple syrup, but I've found that if you're using a commercial Orgeat syrup like the great stuff from Torani it's sweet enough not to need it.

Shake and serve over ice in a high ball glass. Garnish with a fresh mint sprig and paper umbrella.

The drink is light, thirst quenching, and easy to drink many of. Do not confuse the classic Scorpion with that abomination called The Scorpion Bowl that's usually served at your favorite Japanese steak house show bar. You know the one that comes in a bucket with 5 straws. This is not it. The Scorpion and the Scorpion Bowl usually get concocted with more fruit juice, sour mix, amaretto, and all manner of things. This makes it syrupy and way too sweet. Try the classic Scorpion, but Watch out for that sting.