COVID-19 lockdown cocktails

Um. We’re in lockdown. COVID-19. This would seem to be a good time to have a cocktail. Since what else are we going to do? (Rhetorical question: don’t answer it).

So, the biggest success so far has been pre-mixed negronis, nuked in the microwave, and made in a batch. Look up @mrlyan on instagram or google Ryan Chetiyawardana’s recipe for the Nuked Negroni, where the usual suspects (gin, red vermouth and campari) are infused with blackberries, grapefruit peel and rosemary in the microwave at 600w for 3 minutes.

Then, when you want to use it, you just stir 3 ounces (per person) with ice until it’s cold, and then pour onto a big old ice cube. I love negronis. I’m pretty indiscriminate and don’t often meet a negroni I don’t like, so I can’t tell if this one is better, but I like to think it is.

I found another recipe for bulk, nuked Vieux Carrรฉs (a drink originating from New Orleans), so that’s next on my list to try.

Part of the fun of making cocktails is seeing what ingredients are on hand! As we found a bunch of limes on special at Harris Farms, and a friend who stayed with us gave us a bottle of rum (which we weren’t keeping a regular stock of), I decided to make Boston Sidecars the other night:

๐Ÿธ 3/4 ounce rum
๐Ÿธ 3/4 ounce brandy
๐Ÿธ 3/4 ounce grand marnier
๐Ÿธ 1/2 ounce lime juice

Shaken with ice, served in a sugar-rimmed glass and we couldn’t resist putting in a maraschino cherry ๐Ÿ’ It was lovely. A little bit on the heavy side, but the lime juice lifts it.

Other cocktails which I didn’t take photos of: the Dark and Stormy (ginger beer, rum and a twist of lime: very nice); and to use up some Pimm’s we had stored, a Pimmlet (instead of a regular old Pimm’s cocktail):

๐Ÿธ 25 ml Pimm’s No.1
๐Ÿธ 25 ml Gordonโ€™s Gin
๐Ÿธ 25 ml fresh lime juice
๐Ÿธ Dash of sugar syrup
๐Ÿธ Cucumber slice
๐Ÿธ Mint leaves

Pimm’s and cucumber seems a classic combination. Great for a hot day. Making this inspired me to make my own sugar syrup, so stay tuned for some more cocktails that make use of that!

The night before last was Angostura Bitter Sour, as years ago, I had accidentally bought a second bottle of bitters, when we already had one. So I wanted to get down to one bottle (impossible unless you us more of it than the usual 3 dashes). In the meantime, I had some egg whites leftover from making ice cream, so this was the perfect recipe. It was surprising good, perhaps like a Jagermeister cocktail instead of a shot, some deep and rich herb flavours (๐Ÿธ an ounce of bitters) mellowed with sour (๐Ÿธ an ounce of lime juice) and sweet (๐Ÿธ an ounce of sugar syrup). All shaken up with the egg white to make it foamy. This was a fun experiment (with a pretty deep purple/brown colour) but I’m not sure I’d do it again.

Last night was also a pretty cocktail. We’ve become fans of Fever-Tree tonics, but for my last liquor run at Dan Murphy’s (where I treated myself to a number of ingredients to make NEW cocktails with), they were out of every flavour of tonic instead of the lemon tonic water. When I looked it up on various websites, mixologists are VERY specific about matching this tonic water to certain ingredients, rather than just making a lemony gin and tonic.

The ‘Bitter Lemon Cooler’ was refreshing, and pretty. I’m likely to make it again sometime, and it’s a good way to use up dry vermouth, which is impossible to use up with the whisper of it I add to martinis.

๐Ÿธ 1 1/2 oz Dry vermouth
๐Ÿธ 1 oz Gin
๐Ÿธ 1/4 oz Grenadine (or maraschino cherry juice, which we used)
๐Ÿธ 1/4 oz Fresh lemon juice
๐Ÿธ Bitter lemon soda

That’s a rather full report of last week’s cocktails! Stay tuned for more (as it seems the lockdown will go on a lot longer).

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