Make it: Pickled Watermelon Garnish and a sweet and sour ginger cockail

Pickled Watermelon Rinds and a Sweet and Sour Ginger Cocktail // stirandstrain.comGrowing up, there was a place where my Dad played pool that boasted a large, murky glass jug filled with iridescent white orbs; you might call them pickled eggs. Something about their appearance on a bar top, poorly lit by the fluorescent lighting, made the act of eating them akin to sticking ones hand in fire: you just didn’t do it unless you were drunk and your friend dared you to.

However, given a few decades between that memory and now, I probably wouldn’t have to be dared to eat them, and there’s a good chance I’d eat them sober too. My love of pickled food items has grown tremendously over the last 10 years. Partly because I’ve eaten some really, really good pickled items out at restaurants. Another part might have to do with my chunk of Scandinavian heritage. And partly because once you’ve eaten enough food your friends have dared you to eat while drinking, well, at some point you start to like it all.

Pickled Watermelon Rinds and a Sweet and Sour Ginger Cocktail // stirandstrain.comMy introduction to pickled watermelon rinds did not, however, come at the tail-end of a deep Southern drinking spree. I was offered some from a friend, tried them, and liked them. And today, because I’ve been overindulging in the bounty that is summer watermelon, I decided to make up a batch from all those leftover rinds.Pickled Watermelon Rinds and a Sweet and Sour Ginger Cocktail //

I’m also including a complimentary cocktail to go along with your pickled watermelon. It too uses scraps in the form of ginger knobs (My freezer is full of tiny bits of ginger because I can never quite buy the right amount and cannot bring myself to throw away anything.). A tiny bit of the brine goes a long way to perk up the cocktail, so definitely make both!

You’ll find that these tiny sweet and salty, slightly crunchy rinds are also a delicious bar snack to have around for the summer. And I’m sure any guests will appreciate these just a tad more than the jar of pickled eggs.Pickled Watermelon Rinds and a Sweet and Sour Ginger Cocktail //

Pickled Watermelon Rind:

1 small watermelon, about 4 pounds

1-1/2 cups apple cider vinegar

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup water

4 tablespoons kosher salt

1 (4-inch) cinnamon stick, broken in half

1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

1 bay leaf

1/2 teaspoon red chili pepper flakes

2 cloves, whole

1 teaspoon coriander seeds, whole

  1. Using a vegetable peeler, remove outer green layer of skin from watermelon (if you have a smaller watermelon, cut the bottom and top ends off so you can stand your watermelon up to peel. If it’s larger, cut in half to stand up). Discard skin. Cut rind into 1-inch cubes and reserve pink flesh for another use.
  2. Combine apple cider vinegar, sugar, water, salt, cinnamon sticks, peppercorns, bay leaf, chili pepper flakes, cloves, and coriander seeds in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Add watermelon rind, return to a boil and boil for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and carefully place a heatproof plate on top of the rind to keep it submerged as the mixture comes to room temperature.
  3. Once cool, transfer entire mixture to an airtight container and let stand in refrigerator for at least 2 days and up to 2 weeks.

Ginger Infused Vodka:

1 cup peeled fresh ginger root, sliced 1/2-inch thick

2 cups vodka

  • Combine vodka and ginger in an airtight container. Let stand in a cool, dark place for 5 days or to your desired spiciness, up to 14 days total. Strain into an airtight container and store at room temperature for up to 6 months.

Pickled Watermelon Rinds and a Sweet and Sour Ginger Cocktail // stirandstrain.comFor each cocktail:

1-1/2 ounces Ginger Infused Vodka

1/4 ounce dry vermouth, such as Dolin

3 ounces chilled Prosecco

Pickled Watermelon Rind, for garnish

  • Combine Ginger Infused Vodka and vermouth in a mixing glass and fill two-thirds full with ice. Stir until well chilled, about 20 seconds. Strain into a small wine glass or coupe. Top with Prosecco and garnish with the pickled watermelon rind.

Suntory Tries Their Hand At Space Whisky

Japanese spirits conglomerate, Suntory, is sending six samples of their premium whisky into space aboard the International Space Station, in an effort to determine if zero gravity has any effect on whisky aging. As part of its space whisky package, Suntory has indicated they will send a 21-year-old single malt to ISS. Previous research has shown that whisky aged in a climate with little to no temperature change can be less intense.

The whisky samples will stay in space on the ISS for one to two years and Suntory has said they currently have no plans to make the whisky available for consumer purchase when it returns to Earth. Suntory will send its first space whisky assortment up on August 16, 2015.

The post Suntory Tries Their Hand At Space Whisky appeared first on Whisky Critic – Whisky Reviews & Articles – Style. Attitude. Whisky..


The Newstalgic Cocktail with Real Passion Fruit

Passion tends to be super sour, sometimes you can find a sweet variety but more often than not it’s a big sour component. In this drink it plays our ‘sour’ against that of peach schnapps and a few other key ingredients.

This drink brings classy cocktail design to passion fruit inspired flavor and does it with a successful touch. The sourness comes through but does it with a dry sour and authentic passion fruit flavor profile with a hint of vermouth that doesn’t come in like an overproof wine.

This seems like it could be a real classic cocktail even through, it’s probably not that old of a cocktail design.

Coupe Glasses:

B.G. Reynold’s Passion Fruit Syrup:

The Newstalgic Cocktail

1/4 oz. Grand Marnier, 1/4 oz. Peach Schnapps, 1/4 oz. Dry Vermouth, 1/4 oz. Lime Juice, 1 oz. Passion Fruit, 2 Drops Angostura


ABOUT Common Man Cocktails (CMC)

Common Man Cocktails, inspired by Derrick Schommer’s intimidation when opening a cocktail book, is designed to show viewers how to create some of the most common cocktails to advanced crazy cocktails and to look back at the classics of yesterday. Derrick has learned as he goes and has been actively creating five recipes a week on the channel for over six years, lots of content to keep you entertained for hours!

CMC will teach you how to make some great cocktail designs, give you ideas for new cocktails and introduce you to the latest spirits, liqueurs, syrups, barware and bitters. If you’re looking to become a cocktail enthusiast or need new ideas for your bartending trade, CMC is a great place to start.

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Critical Hit, by No More Kings.


10 Dinge, die ein waschechter Whisky-Fan niemals sagen würde

Es wird diskutiert, geschimpft, gelobt und dabei viel getrunken. Meist das gute Zeug, gelegentlich aber auch Enttäuschungen. Beobachtet man dabei die Szene, so formt sich allmählich ein Bild des typischen Whisky-Trinkers. Über dessen Lippen würden folgende 10 Sätze aber niemals kommen. 10 Sätze präsentiert mit einem Augenzwinkern.

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Black Tot Day – competition time

Black Tot Day

At this time of year, there’s one spirit on our minds here at TWE – rum. With Independence Day of Jamaica next Thursday, it gives us a chance to highlight our comprehensive range, starting with today – Black Tot Day. At 11am on this day in 1970, sailors in the British Royal Navy were given the daily rum ration (aka the daily tot) for the last time after a tradition that had lasted since 1655. The occasion was marked with a sombre ceremony, recreated by Gosling’s in 2011:

To celebrate, we’re running a terrific prize draw; simply buy any two different full-size bottles of rum before 20 August from our selection – there’s more than 400 to choose from – and you’ll automatically be entered into a prize draw to win a bottle of Black Tot, made by blending the last consignment of Royal Naval rum, a bottle worth more than £600. To find out more about the prize, read our post here.

Black Tot

Black Tot Last Consignment Royal Naval Rum, 54.3%

Official tasting notes by spirits writer Dave Broom:

Colour: Bright, yet deep mahogany cut with flashes of ruby.

Nose: Initial treacle notes precede dark chocolate with super-ripe black fruits, muscovado sugar and walnuts. A drop of water releases notes of black banana, liquorice root, tamarind paste with an exotic edge of balsamic.

Palate: Starts off thick and sweet, becoming light and oaky before a burst of cassis/crème de mûre then espresso and cacao.

Finish: Very long with light scented wood, black fruits and cigar tobacco.

Strength: Remarkably, after 40 years, Black Tot is 54.3% (94.2° proof), almost exactly original issuing strength.

You can find full competition details, including all of the rules, terms and conditions, on our Black Tot prize draw page – good luck, and if you’re not the lucky winner, you’ll still have two bottles of tasty rum to enjoy!

Originally published on The Whisky Exchange Blog – Black Tot Day – competition time


The Final Ward

P1 - The Last Ward

Spelling Check

Look carefully, you may have mis-read the name of this cocktail. It’s not actually the Last Word – it’s The Final Ward, a somewhat famous variation on the famous cocktail.

Phil Ward created this cocktail during his tenure at Death & Co, and later went on to open another New York staple cocktail bar – Mayahuel. I consider this cocktail to be one part of a larger cocktail scene. Hard to believe 2005 is ten years ago now – but looking back, the influence of Ward and his Death & Co compatriots Brian Miller, Joaquin Simo and Alex Day is easy to see in the East Village today.

The Difference

Ward replaced the traditional spirit of Gin with Rye whiskey – which then required swapping the lime for lemon juice. This simple swap results in an entirely different cocktail that’s just as great as the original.

Better yet, this one uses very few unusual ingredients, so as long as you have our good friend Chartreuse behind your bar, you can probably make this drink tonight! (Highly recommended, by the way.)

P2 - The Last Ward

The Final Ward is a post from: A Bar Above Mixology