“I notice the bottles.” A brief history of gin. Genever, and more. Greg mentions KGB Spirits gin. “Mobsters slinging it around.” We taste Dry Gin, New Western Gin and Old Tom Gin. Greg mentions Ransom and Left Turn‘s Old Toms. “The tequila shooters of their time.”
Humboldt Distillery is based out of northern California where they distill vodka and rum. I used their spiced rum to make a cocktail that I’ve been really enjoying lately: the Double Rum Old Fashioned.
Humboldt’s spiced rum I found to be sweet and syrupy, with a mild spiced palate; it goes well in cocktails for sure. I also had the chance to try their vodka, a sugarcane distillate that’s a touch sweet and quite smooth, as well as”Humboldt’s Finest”: a vodka infused with locally-grown sativa cannabis.
I know, that raises some questions, so here’s what I do know: Humboldt’s Finest is legal in all 50 states. Does it make you high? Not that I noticed. Really, the biggest question we need to ask is: how does it taste? Well, Humboldt’s Finest is like a marriage between a tasty vodka and a mild, minty, herbal gin. In tonic, for instance, you might just find it a little more herbal than a Vodka Tonic and bit milder than a Gin and Tonic. It makes for a slightly more interesting Dirty Martini, too. When I substituted it for their regular vodka in cocktails, people always noted it was “more herbal.”
All Humboldt’s spirits are organic, and I think the distillery had a unique enough approach together with a unique portfolio of spirits to add some fun cocktail twists to your home bar. Both vodkas retail for about $25.
Sugarlands Distilling Co. has been sponsoring the podcast for the last few episodes or so, and I have been thinking of creative ways to use moonshine in cocktails.
Tequila cocktails are usually a very good fit, as blanco tequilas and moonshine are most similar in their flavor palates, and I’ve made Moonshine Margaritas pretty often. I started to think about the classic cocktail recipes, too, and test out drinks that would be a good fit for moonshine as well, and recently on the podcast, we made a Mooonshine Collins that was awesome. Here’s how you do it:
We talk about a seminal summer drink: The Margarita! History of the Margarita, including early versions of it. Are frozen drinks frowned upon? Daisy -> Sour -> Margarita. Agave syrup as a sweetener? We make Gary “Gaz” Regan and Robert Hess’s Margarita recipes and do some comparison.
When you’re searching for inspiration for a new cocktail recipe, sometimes the ingredients are the first thing you put together, and sometimes the name of the drink presents itself and you build from there. I’ve been working to take RumChata from its place as a typically-wintertime liqueur to an ingredient I use year-round, and the name of the drink was there waiting for me: Red Summer.
Something bold and sexy, I figure, and I decided to go really crazy and use a “summer” ingredient I had never even considered with RumChata: gin. In this case, I added Caorunn Gin, a Scottish gin with a faint trace of apple flavor (part of the distillate, in fact).
I’ll be honest: I thought to myself, what’s the most summery and least likely ingredient for a RumChata cocktail, and gin was my answer. When I took the first sip of this drink, though, I realized I had come up with something very special. The cinnamon of RumChata plays against the sweet grenadine and the apples-and-spices botanicals in Caorunn. This is a great drink that you have to try!