When life gives you a Tiki Mug, make a Chi Chi

Usually when it comes to my cocktail experimentation, I base it on the alcohol I have – or if I’m enthusiastic enough, I get a bottle and use it as my muse. This time is slightly different, my muse for this morning madness:

And yes, those are 'bamboo' straws 🎍

And yes, those are ‘bamboo’ straws 🎍

Tiki happened between Prohibition and Disco – a 40 year old trend which created some of the most delicious cocktails! So as I don’t have the usual Tiki ingredients e.g. Rum, I thought I’d research into this exciting genre a little bit more and find out what my options are.

The traditional Tiki ingredients:
Rum
Lime
Orgeat
Curçao

What I have:
Vodka
Gin
Ted the Tiki Mug
A Pineapple

Recap:

Pia the Piña & Ted the Tiki just chilling.

Pia the Piña & Ted the Tiki just chilling.

What I did:

CHI CHI

Pretty much a Piña Colada, but with Vodka instead of rum – then I made a few other adjustments. Accidentally made it healthier (if I could use coconut cream, I would’ve). However the accident made it light, just as delicious – which allows room to knock back multiple with less guilt! Let the fun times begin! (Warning: Slightly more time consuming than usual)

Where there is a will, there is a way!

Where there is a will, there is a way!

60ml Vodka
1/4 Pineapple
1 Tablespoon Coconut Oil
1 Tablespoon Dark Demerara Sugar
1/2 Banana
Cherry for Garnish

1. Cut 1/2 the pineapple into disks (removing skin), then into quarters. Put in a pan with coconut oil and sugar, cook until pineapple is golden and soft. This creates a syrup which you don’t want to throw away!
2. Cool the Pineapple in the freezer for 10-20 minutes.
3. In a Blender, put in the Vodka, banana, half the caramelized pineapple and 2 tablespoons of the syrup with a cup of ice.
4. Blend blend blend!
5. Pour into Tiki Mug of choice, or any desired vessel.
6. Garnish and enjoy!

PIÑA PUNCH

This was more an ode to the rest of the Pineapple, which turned out to be delicious and all the refreshing! I recommend making this one into a jug and sharing the love.

Packs a Punch ... 😁

Packs a Punch … 😁

1/4 Fresh Pineapple (or 60ml Pineapple Juice)
30ml Barrel Aged Gin (I used Ransom Gin, or feel free to use box standard whatever.)
30ml Sweet Vermouth
Rosé Wine

1. If you’re using fresh pineapple like I did, blend the first three ingredients without ice – I also strained it to take the lumps out – again, bottled is easier. I think the theme I went with other than ‘Tiki’ was ‘Time Consuming’. If you’re using fresh, just build in wine glass.
2. Fill glass with ice, then top with Rose wine.
3. Ta da!

***This punch is definitely on the dry side – if you like your drinks on the sweeter side, I suggest adding grenadine 🙂

Also, apologies for my lack of posting. There will be many posts to look forward to in the next couple weeks, I promise!

Prost!

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Morning Sunshine! So I accidentally got my mum drunk.

I woke up this morning, walked to the fridge and stared into the chilled pantry deciding on what to forage for breakfast. The first thing that caught my eye was what I assume was a Sour Cherry jam? It’s in Greek… and as you will soon learn, I’m not.

Sour Cherry... Jam.

Sour Cherry… Jam.

I’m not sure if it was the word ‘sour’, or my dipsomania, but my first thought was …

“That… would make a cracking rum sour…”

So, as any normal person would do, I tested that theory immediately. I got out the eggs, which I thought justified the fact I was making a cocktail before 10:30am – some people like their eggs scrambled, some poached, personally I’m happy having them in a sour. I grabbed a lemon, looked at the spirits I had around me, and played bartender.

The characters in my play.

The characters in my play.

A quick tip for making the perfect sour at home – NutriBullet. If you don’t have a boston shaker (refer to previous article for example) you can either use it as a shaker, or just blend it and you have the fluffiest of cocktails which, according to the ads, also transforms into a superfood.

So!

For those playing at home:

Sour Cherry Rum Sour

As this was made quite early in the morning, I didn’t quite want to drink it. Mainly as I was so excited about it I wanted to write about it straight away, and when my fingers become tipsy that gets a little hard. So naturally I gave it to my mum, her rave review will follow. Also the only reason I added the salted caramel vodka (other than its delicious), is to add sweetness and a ‘depth of flavour’, however you can just replace it with extra agave.

Definitely a morning pick-me-up.

Definitely a morning pick-me-up.

45ml Angostura Caribbean Rum (5yo)
30ml Stoli Salted Caramel
1 tspn Sour Cherry ‘Jam’
1 tspn Agave Syrup
1/2 lemon (juiced)
1 Egg white

  1. Put all ingredients into shaker/nutribullet. If your going the superfood route, you may need to shake it a little first before blending to ensure the syrups aren’t stuck.
  2. Blend! Or shake, and if you’re shaking, dry shake (which means without ice), and you can also pat yourself on the back for getting your morning cardio out of the way. See, this cocktail just gets healthier and healthier!
  3. Fill a short glass with ice, pour in the delicious fluffy mixture and garnish with more sour cherries.
  4. Enjoy!

So a fun fact, my mum was born in Germany, specifically in the Black Forest region – thus I thought her review was a little bit cute. Also that she said this to me via facebook messenger even though she was only a room away, and they say its the kids that are bad… so this is word for word – cntrl+c, cntrl+v =

“lovely balance of creaminess sourness and alcohol that makes it hard to realize how strong the drink is.. I am lost in the Black Forrest.. ..if you suck the essence out of all the best Black Forrest Cake you have ever imbibed .. this cocktail is what you would hope to get..”

Haha cute, no!?

Anyway! Hope everyone has the loveliest of days!

Prost!

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***A few things I would like to add, as I haven’t really given anything away about myself other than the fact I may or may not like alcohol a bit too much and I’m currently in a salted caramel phase. I’m a bartender/bar manager/bar consultant (click here for evidence 😉 ) who loves the beauty and personality of alcohol. I think currently there’s been two things happening which I don’t like, the over complication of alcohol and the demonisation of it. I also study Public Health and Health Promotion majoring in Nutrition so am well aware of what alcohol does, but I also believe life should be lived in moderation, you shouldn’t take yourself too seriously, and you’re only here once so make sure to have a good time. I’ll save this for another post, or put it in the About Me (once I get around to making one) but all I’m saying is you don’t have to be a ‘mixologist’ to make a cocktail or a sommelier to enjoy wine, and don’t let a diet fad stop you from having fun. The moment I’m serving a customer who says they need a non-alcoholic option on their birthday because alcohol doesn’t fit into their #paleo regime, is the day I lose all faith in humanity. 

“In wine there is wisdom, in beer there is Freedom, in water there is bacteria.”
― Benjamin Franklin

Why salted caramel is everything the body needs!

There’s a lot more to salted caramel than meets the eye. I honestly thought that when researching the topic I would find out it was created due to the indulgent needs of a French Monarch, a little Geoffrey of a prince who just wanted everything all at once,

“SacrĂ© bleu! Give me something simultaneously savoury and sweet! MERCI BEAUCOUP!”

And yes, that was my entire vocabulary of high school French.

Unfortunately, there isn’t much history at all. It was only created in the late 1990s by a Parisian pastry chef Pierre HermĂ©. That’s right, salted caramel is a 90’s kid.

(cue for novelty 90's themed macaron)

(cue for novelty 90’s themed macaron)

So more research, why is salted caramel so addictive?

Due to our hunter-gatherer ancestors – we instinctively prefer sweet-tasting high-energy foods compared to bitter-tasting poisonous foods. The sweetness indicates energy, and salt is a necessary mineral for the body’s water balance and blood circulation. So you combine the two, and in return get two very happy biological responses. Your stomach then continues to get overwhelmed by the excitement, like the mastermind kid in the Old El Paso add who decides that ‘both’ is the best option, and sends happy signals to your brain creating a reward circuit.

It’s not your fault, you’re biologically predisposed to be hopelessly addicted to salted caramel. Think of it as nutritional efficiency.

So! Now that we have an excuse:

Salted Caramel Espresso Martini

So you get the amazing duo, then add it to another stunning duo of coffee with alcohol and you pretty much get something to which I would go as far as saying is best described as: ‘Nectar of the Gods’

Oh hello there you beautiful thing you...

Oh hello there you beautiful thing you…

For those playing at home:

45ml Stoli Salted Karamel Vodka
15ml Kahlua Coffee Liqueur
30ml Little Drippa Cold Drip Coffee

  1. Add ingredients to boston shaker and fill with ice.
  2. Shake until your arms hurt, or around 20 seconds will do (I find the more I shake, the fluffier the martini)
  3. Double strain into a coupette, or wine glass, or whatever is handy. If you put it in a mug, it makes it socially acceptable to consume before 10am.
  4. Garnish with 3 coffee beans (no more or no less, I’m superstitious)
  5. VoilĂ !

And if you don’t know what a boston shaker is:

Or alternatively, refer to recipe below for a boston shaker free substitute.

Some times simple is best... and yes, that is a tim tam.

Some times simple is best… and yes, that is a tim tam.

120ml Milk (can come from a cow, soy bean or nut.)
60 ml Stoli Salted Karamel Vodka
Tim Tam (whichever flavour you so desire, I went with coconut cream, just to be fancy)

  1. Fill a short glass with ice
  2. Add vodka and milk, you can change up the measurements to taste… sometimes I do a cheeky vice vera.
  3. Garnish with Tim Tam.
  4. Then once you’ve finished staring at the glory before you, bite both ends of the Tim Tam to create a straw, also known as a ‘Tim Tam Slam’. For more in depth instructions for this step and fun facts, click here.

Happy drinking!

Prost!

ps. If you like looking at pictures of delicious cocktails – @cocktailsofmelbourne 😉

A dash of American prohibition, a spoonful of Russian Revolution, garnish with an evil English Queen…

And you have yourself a Bloody Mary!

Yes yes, some see a Bloody Mary and cringe at the idea. On the other hand, some people consider them a Sunday morning ritual, I personally think a Bloody Mary is a thing of beauty. As rich in history and creativity as it is in its red hues, and hopefully at the end of this post you’ll fall in love with its poetry as much as I do. So let the story begin! Once upon a time…

It all started back when something terrible happened in the US of A, prohibition, or as W.C. Fields likes to put it, a time where he “was forced to live for days on nothing but food and water”. Bartenders had decided to flee to the safe shores of Europe to continue their practise, the same time a pretty nasty revolution convinced groups of Russians to do the same – bringing their Vodka with them. Americans didn’t come empty handed however, they brought tinned juices. (If it was a competition….)

Nonetheless! This, right time at the right place was the birth place of something beautiful. It was 1920s Paris, a bartender by the name of Ferdinand “Pete” Petiot and a bar by the name of Harry’s New York Bar on 5 Rue Danou (or as liquor hungry americans learnt to instruct parisian tax drivers, “Sank Roo Doe Noo!”). This is where the history gets a bit blurry, there are many variations of the story, but long story short – the Bloody Mary or very early days the “Bucket of Blood” was created. Some say the Bloody Mary comes from Queen Mary I, known for the death and destruction she caused over her reign, also sharing the same nickname.

At the start it was just equal parts vodka and canned tomato juice, but as time passed, Pete moved back to New York to man the King Cole bar at the St. Regis and a Russian Prince and businessman by the name of Serge Obolensky wanted one of the infamous Bloody Marys, but with a kick. And this! My friends, is where we get the tasty concoction today. He put on his thinking cap, grabbed the salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce and a lemon, and the blank canvas was promoted to masterpiece.

The story continues with its many variations, The Red Snapper it gin laden cousin, or its Mexican friend the Bloody Maria, but these are all interesting stories for another day.

The classic recipe:

  • 1 oz. Stolichnaya vodka
  • 2 oz. Tomato juice
  • 1 dash lemon juice
  • 2 dashes salt
  • 2 dashes black pepper
  • 2 dashes cayenne pepper
  • 3 dashes of Worcestershire sauce

The beauty of the Bloody Mary is that there is no true recipe, and its a classic which the most stubborn mixoligist will allow others to play around with. These days we see the likes of sriracha among many other ingredients being added. Its something of ones own culinary skill and these days Bloody Marys aren’t just drinks – but also foundations for lavish garnishes which really show the true potential of wooden skewers and a creative mind.

Hopefully I’ve helped open up the minds of some anti-Bloody Mary folk out there, it may be an acquired taste, but it truly is one for the books. So with that said! A few locals to have a look at:

The Bloody Hell - Chilli Infused Vodka Served with a Shrimp, Slider & Buffalo Wing @ Bloody Mary's, Sydney

The Bloody Hell – Chilli Infused Vodka Served with a Shrimp, Slider & Buffalo Wing @ Bloody Mary’s, Sydney

The Bloody Mary @ Porch and Parlour, also at Sydney. Bondi in fact, who needs garnishes when you have a view?

The Bloody Mary @ Porch and Parlour, also at Sydney. Bondi in fact, who needs garnishes when you have a view?

The Secret Bloody Mary @ Stray Neighbour, Preston. Garnished with Fried Pickles & Chipotle aioli - this one was limited edition but I'm sure we can create a petition...

The Secret Bloody Mary @ Stray Neighbour, Preston. Garnished with Fried Pickles & Chipotle aioli – this one was limited edition but I’m sure we can create a petition…

For those playing at home:

Bloody Mary’s Bar/Cafe, 332 Victoria St Darlinghurst Sydney || www.bloodymaryssydney.com.au

Porch and Parlour,  110 Ramsgate Ave North Bondi Beach  || www.porchandparlour.com

Stray Neighbour, 463 – 467 Plenty Rd, Preston ||                 www.strayneighbour.com.au

Prost!

That time when Cocktails of Melbourne went to Sydney…

So! A few myths that I would like to debunk.

  • Sydney does have bars
  • Sydney also has cafes

I went to Sydney for four nights, purely for research, made sure to drink as much as possible, purely for the readers benefits.

Unfortunately due to my enthusiasm I’m not quite recovered enough to describe at length, so I’m going to take the picture book route, and promise to explain in extensive detail once I finally find where I hid the Berocca.

Evidence of above fallacies:

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I’d add captions, but I prefer to leave some element of mystery and will reveal in 24 hours.

Till then,

Prost! x