Monday, January 11, 2010

The Lime In Winter



.75 oz. Brandy (I used Martell VSOP)
.75 oz. Cointreau
.75 oz. Jamaican rum (I used Appleton V/X)
Juice of one lime, strained*
1 dash Angostura bitters

Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker with cracked ice. Shake well, strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with a twist of lime.

~ from "Cocktail Hour" by Susan Waggoner and Robert Markel

Bring on the citrus! That's often my rallying cry this time of year, when thick snow covers everything, the temps plunge, and colds are flourishing (at least here in the Liquor Lab). Don't be stingy with our friend vitamin C- apply it liberally and aggressively.

My weapon of choice right now is the lime, and it's used to good effect in the Embassy, named after the Embassy Club, a speakeasy noteworthy for its Old Hollywood clientele. Aside from a decent belt of lime juice, the drink serves up healthy portions of three quality boozes, which combine nicely into a robust and sophisticated whole. It's got an unmistakable vintage taste...tart and punchy while stopping short of something that would come out of a juice box. It's both potent and smooth, and one of the best excuses to exsanguinate a lime I can think of.

Speaking of which, since I try to buy limes in bulk whenever possible (as I've noted before, I can be a cheap SOB), it's the citrus I tend to have on hand most often...mainly because the drinks I tend to like use it more often than lemon, grapefruit, etc. Aside from slaughtering huge numbers of them to make falernum, I'm always chasing the little green bastards around for one reason or another (even it's just for a nice garnish).

Since I'm always looking for an excuse to brighten my day with a little lime, lemme know what your favorite use for it is. (Except for you Corona drinkers- Ruining a perfectly good lime slice by drowning it in bad beer is shameful. Now go to your room and think about what you've done.)

*I find that the limes I use yield approximately 3/4 oz. of juice, which makes this recipe one of those easy-to-remember ones with equal proportions of the main ingredients. You're welcome.