UPDATE: I've changed the drink's name.
This month's Mixology Monday theme is "Ginger" -- what a good idea! Ginger's sweet, spicy heat figures prominently in many cocktails, such as the classic Dark 'n' Stormy or the true modern-day classic from Audrey Saunders, the Gin-Gin Mule. (Michael Dietsch is right on when he notes that wimpy, HFCS-laden "ginger ale" doesn't do the trick. You want a real ginger bite when you make one of those drinks. Ginger beer (or Blenheim Ginger Ale -- Vernors used to qualify, but they've changed it somewhat) is what's needed for the true amount of spice.) And of course, there are other options: homemade ginger beer, muddling or juicing a piece of ginger, Stone's Ginger Wine, and Domaine de Canton ginger liqueur, just to name a few. I decided to go with the Domaine de Canton, simply because MxMo was a good excuse to pick up a bottle that I'd been eyeing in my local liquor store for a little while now.
Ginger's also a good remedy for upset stomachs -- candied or crystallized ginger is about as effective as Angostura in soda for soothing queasy tummies. Hmmm...maybe I should douse a piece of candied ginger with Angostura the next time I'm not feeling well. It's probably wishful thinking on my part, but I wonder if a ginger-based drink would leave the drinker less susceptible to that part of a hangover? Evidently more experimentation is needed.
Matt Robold, aka the RumDood, is hosting this month's MxMo. I hope he'll let me use a recipe without rum -- as he says it, "some people are fine with mediocrity"...ouch! I used tequila as a base spirit, since I wanted to use the Bittermens Xocolatl Mole bitters (more on those below), and I thought the slight bite from the Maestro Dobel might complement the ginger's subtle-sweet heat. And, once I'd decided on tequila, the Margarita was my natural starting point. As luck would have it, this one came together pretty quickly. (Thinking of Tequila por mi Amante, I also tried a variation with a teeny splash of some kickass Creme de Frais de Bois (wild strawberry) liqueur that I have, but it wound up a confused mess.) This is a very simple and not-terribly-creative drink that I'm offering this month, but I find that it goes down easily and is pretty refreshing on a hot summer's day.
Gingerita Litigious Bastard
- 1 1/2 oz. tequila (I used Maestro Dobel Diamond, a lighter-yet-flavorful tequila made from blended and filtered aged tequilas)
- 1 oz. Domaine de Canton
- 1/2. oz. lime juice
- 2 healthy dashes of Bittermens Xocolatl Mole bitters
The name is obvious the name has been changed, but this is essentially a Margarita with the Canton substituted for the Cointreau, plus a dash of the mole bitters. I was thinking of how much I like candied ginger dipped in dark chocolate, and thought I'd go for the chocolate note as well with this drink. (The Bittermens bitters are awesome, and the Xocolatl Mole and Grapefruit bitters are now finally available, produced by The Bitter Truth and sold in the US by The Boston Shaker! Go get some.)