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Citrus County

2 oz Bluecoat Gin
0.5 oz Ramazzotti Amaro
0.5 oz Lemon Juice
1 egg white
4 dashes West Indian Orange Bitters

Shake everything but the bitters really hard for about 10 seconds without ice. Then add a couple cubes and shake for an additional 10 seconds. Strain carefully, making sure to get all of the good egg froth from the bottom of the shaker. Dash bitters on top of the finished drink.

NOTES: Jen certainly loves her egg white drinks, that’s for sure. Super citrusy and pretty damn tasty. If anything, a little too much gin and not enough Ramazzotti. Might try 1.5oz / 1 oz next time.

Fahrenheit 451

2 oz Bourbon
0.75 oz Applejack
0.5 oz Cherry Heering
0.25 oz Aperol
3 drops Burlesque Bitters

Shake well with ice, pour over a large ice cube. Squeeze some orange oil out of a peel into the finished drink and drop in to garnish.

NOTES: Good flavor, but the Bulleit bourbon was a little overpowering. Would like to try again with a smoother rye, maybe upping the applejack to a full ounce. Burlesque bitters are a little less potent than the Fee Brothers I’m used to, so that could also probably increase.

Deadeye Dick

1.5 oz Scotch
1 oz Ginger Syrup
0.5 oz Honey Syrup
0.5 oz Pimm’s
0.5 oz St. Germain
0.5 lemon juice
2 healthy dashes Whiskey Barrel Bitters

Shake ingredients well with ice and pour over a large ice cube. Dash with seltzer (we’re talking like a tablespoon here, don’t drown the thing) and garnish with candied ginger.

NOTES: Kind of took a shot in the dark with some of these ingredients and it really ended well. This one turned out to be damn tasty, if ever-so-slightly too sweet. Making again I might up the scotch to 2 oz and/or cut out the honey syrup totally. The Pimm’s gave it a nice, surprising aftertaste. I’ll be making this one again.

Night Train

1 oz Scotch
1.5 oz ROOT
0.5 oz Applejack
0.5 oz Simple Syrup
0.25 oz Luxardo
5 drops Cinnamon Tincture

Shake well with ice, serve up garnished with a maraschino cherry.

NOTES: Not bad. Cinnamon could be a little stronger. Also might try with a decent rye instead of Scotch. I enjoyed it, but something was lacking, I just can’t put my finger on what. Worth toying with later.

New Experiment: Tinctures

Not sure how these will work in practice yet, but they were incredibly easy. Also unsure whether it is better to use Everclear or regular old 80 proof Vodka, so we did half of each. The process was simple:

In a wide-mouth jar, fill with herbs or whatever you’re using for the tincture. Cover (and then some) with the alcohol. Let sit and keep an eye on. Once the alcohol seems to have leeched all the color from the botanical, strain it out and seal into a dropper bottle. Assorted reading has led me to believe that leaving the botanicals in the alcohol beyond this point only serves to make it more bitter than it has to be.

These are the 5 we started out with:

1) Rosemary
Pretty self-explanatory. Small fistful of rosemary, covered with Everclear. Seemed to hit peak of color around the two hour mark.

2) Jalapeno
This one is going to be interesting to try. Didn’t use actual jalapenos, as I was out, so just attempted with a tea bag full of dried red pepper flakes. It was slow to start leeching color, but in the end only took about 3 hours. Tried a drop, and it is actually pretty hot. Want to also try out with real peppers. Used Vodka rather than Everclear.

3) Lemon Clove
Tea bag full of ground clove (would have preferred whole cloves, but didn’t have any) and the zest of one lemon (no pith). The clove lost color and went gray after about 45 minutes, so I removed that and left the lemon for an additional hour or so. Vodka, not Everclear.

4) Mint
Same as the rosemary.

5) Cinnamon
Used the tea bag method again with ground cinnamon because we were out of whole sticks. Tastes pretty good, would like to try the alternative. Maybe could have let sit longer than I did OR use more cinnamon because while tasty, could stand to be stronger.

The Big Sleep

1.5 oz Scotch
0.5 oz Benedictine
0.5 oz Lime Juice
0.5 oz Creme de Cassis
2 drops Absinthe
2 dashes Whiskey Barrel Bitters
2 drops Rosewater

Shake ingredients well with ice. Pour into a rocks glass over crushed ice, splash with seltzer water, and garnish with a sprig of mint.

NOTES: Finally got a scotch cocktail to work. I really like this one. Jen noted that it tastes like iced tea for some reason, and it actually does. Nicely floral, a little sweet, and absolutely no whiskey burn, though some of the nice peat flavor remains. Possibly the most successful drink we came up with.