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ITT: Barware, Cocktail Accessories, Bitters, etc.

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by Piobaire, Aug 13, 2012.

  1. kwilkinson

    kwilkinson Senior member

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    Peeb, making anything new lately? I'm doing mondo experiments for the bar program at my restaurant.
    Thus far:
    Allspice dram (amazing in a Manhattan, replacing 1/2 the vermouth for a winter cocktail)
    Easy blood orange liqueurs (meh)
    Blood orangecello (still aging)
    Caraway liqueur (fun to make but can't think of much use for this... I mean etf it tastes like caraway)
    Ginger liqueur
    House bitters (aromatic ala angostura, really good)
    Grapefruit bitters
    Vanilla bitters
    Regan's bitters
    Meyer limoncello (still aging)

    Waiting for spring flavors to kick in. Have my mind set on strawbery/rhubarb bitters, lemongrass infusions, honeycomb liqueur, etc.

    Also have made bottle-conditioned (aka naturally fermented) ginger beer. My advice: use plastic bottles. They have a tendency to explode and exploding plastic is much more safe than exploding glass. Learned that the hard way.
     
  2. Gibonius

    Gibonius Senior member

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    You got a recipe for the allspice dram?
     
  3. kwilkinson

    kwilkinson Senior member

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    1 cup white rum
    1/4 cup allspice berries
    Crush allspice berries and macerate mixture for 4 days. On day four, add
    1 cinnamon stick
    1 whole clove
    And steel 8 days longer.
    Strain through mesh strainer, then again through a coffee filter, allowing it to all soak through without pressing it down.
    Make simple syrup with 1.5 cup water, 2/3 cup broen sugar. Allow simple syrup to cool entirely. Add to rum micture. Let rest 2 days. Bottle and enjoy.


    Taste is 100% spot on with St. Elizabeth allspice dram, but texture is more watery and less thick. I have a second batch going now that I'm going to play with different ratios of syrup for texture. Wi update if it works.

    Edit: sorry for typos, on phone.

    Forgot to add basic guidelines:
    When making liqueurs, no need for premium alcohols. But don't use rotgut either. I typically go for the "call" level of base spirits.
    Also, during any maceration or steeping, give the bottle at least one good shake a day.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2013
  4. kwilkinson

    kwilkinson Senior member

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    Oh, and also, in my very linited experience, higher proof alcohols make for better flavor infusion. I.e., 100 proof bourbon seems to get more base ingredient flavor than 80 proof.
     
  5. Piobaire

    Piobaire Senior member

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    Kyle,

    That allspice sounds great; I'll probably put some down in the next few weeks. Grab some Bittercube bitters (get the six pack) and play with them. They are potent so use with care! We have some orangecello macerating right now in Tito's vodka (stuff is cheap enough to use for this). I have one empty cask right now that I'm doing a cleansing soak with and then plan to put in either an American rye manhattan or a Sazerac; have not made up my mind yet. Currently have a 3 litre cask of manhattans with Wisers, Noilly Prat (my current favorite vermouth), a little Maraschino, and the last of my VTR bitters. It's drinking perfect.

    I had meant to try making bitters over the Xmas break but never got around to it. It would have interrupted my eating and drinking.
     
  6. PaisleySnail

    PaisleySnail Well-Known Member

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    This is a great thread! I just bought a lemon press, now I'm thinking about a mixing glass.

    I'd like to get into home bartending a lot more in the coming months.
     
  7. Huntsman

    Huntsman Senior member

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    I fully endorse the citrus press v. the citrus juicer -- the press extracts oils from the skin and gets them into your cocktail. This makes a HUGE difference in cocktail quality.

    Anyway, my very few additions to my bar hardware from my Tokyo trip. Really, Japan blows everyone else away for the quality and variety of their cocktail gear. A walk down the Kappabashi-dori (the restaurant supply street, near Asakusa) reveals a number of stores with cocktail gear. Everyone has great stuff, saw some vintage gear and tons of new stuff -- Yarai mixing glasses are not at all uncommon, and the quality of glasses in which you get cocktails is really high. I was trying to keep my spend down, so I didn't get a lot of stuff -- a few cocktail glasses, a mixing glass, and a spoon:

    [​IMG]


    ~ H
     
    3 people like this.
  8. denning

    denning Senior member

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    Brother got me two new Old Fashioned glasses. Simple, but elegant.
    [​IMG]
     
    1 person likes this.
  9. b1os

    b1os Senior member

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    Has someone of you tried to "age"/"improve" white spirits (rum) with wood chips?
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2013
  10. Samurai-5

    Samurai-5 Member

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    Must....Buy Immediately. Gahhhh!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  11. Piobaire

    Piobaire Senior member

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    No but read about it. Apparently there is something called an "oak spiral," or something similar, that is superior to chips. You have to buy chips that have been toasted and it seems they are inferior to this spiral device as the wood is often a bit inferior. That said I have bought 8 oz of French oak, medium toast chips to stick inside my first cask as I've used it several times. I figure the cask should balance out the chips. I'll let you know in several weeks.

    And finally am giving this a try:

    [​IMG]

    Just a random attempt at bitters. I'm experimenting and taking notes.
     
  12. Piobaire

    Piobaire Senior member

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    The bitters are not officially completed but just added a couple eye droppers to a drink. Wow. Very nice. Aromatic, spicy, tasty. I have not added a bittering component yet and have some wormwood I plan to use for that.
     
  13. kwilkinson

    kwilkinson Senior member

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    How many tinctures or infusions do you have to blend?
     
  14. Piobaire

    Piobaire Senior member

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    Did not go that route for my first try. Just put some various stuff in 51% CostCo bourbon. I really like it and shall add some dried orange peels and wormwood to finish it.
     
  15. kwilkinson

    kwilkinson Senior member

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    Yum bourbon based bitters. Making bitters is fun
     
  16. Piobaire

    Piobaire Senior member

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    What did you use for your bittering agent and how long did you let it sit? I'm going to put in a bit of wormwood Wednesday and then strain out the solids on Saturday. Last night I added a nice bit of dried orange peel.
     
  17. kwilkinson

    kwilkinson Senior member

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    Gentian root, cassia, wormwood. But I was making separate infusions and blending. You'll definitely pull out a lot of bitterness after just 4 days. If it isn't bitter enough, make a separate bittering agent only infusion and blend it in.
     
  18. Piobaire

    Piobaire Senior member

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    I have a dozen 4 oz tincture bottles in shipping right now. I might start going the individual tincture route for some fun but am just going to use a dash of wormwood for this batch. I'm picking wormwood as when I tell people that's in it they will likely know what it is.
     
  19. Ambulance Chaser

    Ambulance Chaser Senior member

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    I broke the glass portion of my Boston Shaker. Can someone suggest a replacement? Do any of you have the Koriko shaking tins sold by Cocktail Kingdom?
     

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