Joe's Notes: One of our regulars at the Passage Lounge is a young Welsh man. His favorite tipple is a Cider and Black. This is hard cider mixed with Ribena (blackcurrant cordial).
Ribena is used in a number of drinks in the UK, and is referred to as "black," as in Cider and Black, Rum and Black, Vodka and Black and so on and so forth.
So after stopping off at the supermarket to buy the Ribena for the Passage, I began to wonder what cocktail I could make with it.
While driving the 30 minutes to work, the rusty cogs in my head started to churn. As I have stated in past blogs, the process of making a drink usually starts with one ingredient and is built from there, in this case it was blackcurrant.
As in cooking, we look at combinations of flavors that we believe will compliment each other. Adding fleshly-squeezed lime to the blackcurrant seemed the logical first step. Thinking along the lines of a fruit salad , I then added the Grand Marnier. So now I had orange, blackcurrant and lime. The next step was to decide what liquor to add.
I mulled on the possibility of rum, but this seemed too obvious and I was worried that the drink would be to sweet. I also considered Cachaca, but felt that it was too close to rum. Looking again at my ingredients, I decided that the blackcurrant was paired with the orange liqueur, so I needed to pair the lime with something. No brainer: Tequila.
Not long after I had arrived at the Passage, Chris came ambling into the bar. "What do you have for us tonight, Joe" He asked in his usual jovial way. I began mixing my latest concoction, handing it to Chris I said "I have never actually made this drink before, it was purely written in my head on the way in." Chris looked a little dubious but poured the drink down his ever thirsty gullet anyway.
And so a new drink was born.