Ah bleu drinks. Don’t you love them? Two years ago no one in high end cocktails would touch them with a 10 foot pole unless it was to push them into a hazmat bin. Trends change, winds blow, and now they are cool again. Around here they never really stopped, I try to be trend allergic. So I’m super happy that this month’s MxMo theme is Blue, hosted by the always awesome Andrea from Ginhound blog. So, lets bloo this.
Blue drinks are pretty damn well in the Tiki pantheon, though not always in seats of honor. Sure there are mentions of Pre-Tiki blue drinks, but that is not our thing. Part of the power of Tiki mixology is the blending of flavorful rums from a wide variety of tropical locales. Sadly blue curacao is most often a great way to turn a good Tiki drink green, not blue. For a really a stunning blue you have to run from dark rums and sparingly touch gold ones. Often this mandates using clear spirits without the round flavors, depth, and body most Tiki drinks are known for. This isn’t always a bad thing though, Blue drinks done well can be lively, crisp, sweet, and deep in their own ways. Blue cocktails play differently than dark, spicy delights like the Three Dots and a Dash. You need to take these formulas and give them a lightness, brightness, and keep in mind just what colors are in the pot. Flavors like orgeat, coconut cream, anything with a light color but rich body can be crucial in establishing depth.
1 oz Matusalem Silver
¾ oz Appleton Special
½ oz Cruzan 151
½ oz Senior or Bols blue curacao
¾ oz fresh lime juice
¾ oz fresh pineapple juice
½ oz ginger syrup
¼ oz orgeat
1 dash absinthe
JFL’s Ginger Syrup
1 cup fresh ginger juice
1 cup 2:1 simple syrup
1 tsp vodka
Peel and microplane the ginger over cheesecloth then wring thoroughly to extract the juice. Combine well with simple and vodka before bottling.
Ginger, orgeat and absinthe smell way to good together. They meet with the rums to create a fragrant, softly spicy nose with the pineapple playing backup. This drink is peppy and bright with a slightly sweet finish. Pineapple has room to play ball with ginger and orgeat racing down the backfield. The rums are providing good blocking. They give subtle, but timely punches when needed. In the end the finish is sweet and slightly minty without being saccharine.
I hope you don’t think we blew it (Blue all the puns!). It’s always fun to play with pretty colors, but remember they have to taste on point to. Rated R Cocktails is shaking up Tiki delights every Wednesday at The amazing Collins Bar in Birmingham. Drop in before 9 pm central and say “Hi” sometime won’t you? Until next time…
“You get Hammered America” – JFL