Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bay Mosa

So, tomorrow, April 1st, marks the grand re-opening of Salem's own, The Lobster Shanty. In honor of this auspicious occasion, we here at Greatest Drink in the World... This Week, have decided to post their original creation, the Bay Mosa, created during those last hours before they shut down for the deepest, slumberiest heart of this past winter... Brrrr.

The name, Bay Mosa, is a portmanteau from the names of two other cocktails, the Bay Breeze and the Mimosa, due to the fact that the drink has elements of both. But the end result is a whole different category of yummy.

It is a simple, delicate kind of cocktail. Based on champagne, (or "sparkling wine" if of the non-French variety!), and with the addition of a sweet, (and damned tasty!) pomegranate liqueur and pineapple, this drink NEEDS to be assembled lovingly, (and, although Dee claims chance was a factor in its evolution, this baby is dripping with "intelligent design!")

The Recipe:
Into a cocktail shaker of ice, add:

- a heavy splash, (sploosh?) of Pama, Pomegranate Liqueur
- a splash of pineapple juice

- Shake well!

- Strain into a nice sized wine goblet

- gently pour in about 4 ounces of Champagne, or sparkling wine.

Dee's notes: Li'l Sarah, (Sarah Stellato, our bar manager,) was facing a conundrum - it was just after New Year's Eve when we found ourselves with a leftover case of inexpensive, (for mixing only,) Champagne. The Shanty was closing soon and we didn't want to order any more product. We figured we'd feature Mimosas for the rest of the season, however we were low on orange juice and there was a citrus frost down south so that O.J. was extra pricey.

We looked around and discovered that we had plenty of pineapple juice left. We tried a sample of the two together, (Oh! The hardship!) but felt like it was missing something. Originally, we tried a bit of grenadine, but it was kinda cloying, so we looked around a little more and were overjoyed to discover that we had plenty of Pama Liqueur left.
A splash of that instead of grenadine and we were in business. Not only did it help us sell down the extra product, but it was delicious to boot!

Necessity is truly the mother of invention - Win!


Video of the week, (and only just barely related!) is a little number by The New York Dolls called Dance Like A Monkey.

- C:

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Taxi Driver Caipirinhia

It has been about a year, year and a half since Joe made his Caipirinha for me. I remember it distinctly; lime, cachaça, and a dash of sugar, all fizzied up with a splash o' soda. Mmmmm.

And so, Joe decided to resurrect this popular little number with a twist, (as is befitting Joe's idiom,) and presented me with this week's offering, The 'Taxi Driver Caipirinha."

The Recipe:

Into a cocktail shaker full of ice, add:
- 1 part Galliano, (Home-Made or otherwise!)
- 1 part Vana Talinn
- 2 parts Orange Juice
- 4 parts Cachaça

- Shake! Shake like the very wind!

- Strain into a large martini glass

- Garnish with a slice of orange or a maraschino cherry.

Oh, sure, I should've seen this coming. Joe has been threatening me for a while with revamping some of our earlier cocktail reviews. "Bring those great drinks from our early posts up to speed with all the bells and whistles, (i.e. pop-up illustrations, videos, tangental bar-chatter,) of our modern postings." And I have been stringing him along, ("Yeah, we should! That is a great idea! We should DEFINITELY get around to doing that!") with little or no time to spearhead this initiative.

But, more recently, Joe has been complaining about his computer being on the blink. And this week, after dropping this tasty little number in front of me, he emails me saying his home PC is dead and he can't send me any notes regarding the cocktail!

Being a tad bit on the suspicious and jaded side, I assumed duplicity: "DID YOU THINK I WOULDN'T SEE THROUGH YOUR LITTLE PLAN!?! HA!!!"

Anyways, this is what I thought had happened, until Joe emailed me a "Polaroid" of the repairman he found on AOL. ("It was difficult finding a guy who knows the Sinclair ZX-81," he explained as the problem, whatever that means!)

So, in any case, Joe was unable to provide any notes for this week's Greatest Drink. This week, I walk alone!

From my experience with the cocktail, I can say that this "Taxi Driver" Caipirinha differs greatly from the original with the addition of the vanilla. The traditional "Taxi Driver" calls for a healthy dash of vanilla extract. Joe opted for a new flavor on the ever-growing list of Passage liqueurs with the substitution of the Vana Tallinn.
This is a really nice liqueur with a rich, vanilla taste, giving our subject of the week a smooth velvety quality that mingles nicely with the citrus crowd of O.J. and Galliano, (and remember, you can very nicely use Home-Made Galliano here. I know where you can find a good recipe!) and really makes that Cachaça POP!

I also found out that Vana Tallinn is named after and made in the Estonian capital city of Tallinn, ("Reval," for you in the nonagenarian crowd.) And wouldn't you know it, Tallinn was recently named "The European Capital of Culture for 2011."

I am not sure if Joe knew this or not, but here we are, honoring Estonia for this achievement with a cocktail, and a cocktail that features another of their fine achievements!

That Joe.
I can't help wondering if he intentionally abandoned me this week, so that I could travel down this road of cultural enlightenment and learn these things for myself. So wise, he is, so inscrutable.

I swear, sometimes, I feel I work with Yoda.

This week's video, although only barely related, absolutely stinks with culture. Enjoy Bohemian Rhapsody!

Teie Terviseks!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Irish Coffee

With St. Patrick's Day here once again, we look for the perfect cocktail for those with the good taste to avoid the
green beer. After some deliberation, (and Joe's veto of my vanilla ice cream, vodka, and creme de menthe "Shamrock Shake" suggestion!), the classic Irish Coffee was unanimously decided upon!

How could this NOT be the Greatest Drink in the World this Week!?! A delicious hot mug of the brew with a shot or two of fine Irish Whiskey.
Coffee snobs and enthusiasts can use their favorite brew. Whiskey aficionados certainly have a preferred whiskey, (I tend to choose the Paddy's myself!) and I mean, "Begorrah!" What better way to start yer St. Patrick's Day festivities!?!

Joe's notes: I spent a couple of years working in a pub in Ireland, (I will get back to that in a minute.) This is how I was taught to make an Irish Coffee. First boil a kettle of water and rinse out a stemmed glass with the boiling water, (better yet if you have an Irish Coffee Mug!) This not only warms the glass but also helps prevents it from cracking. Into the glass put two heaping teaspoons of brown sugar and one teaspoon of instant coffee granules.

You, of course, can use brewed or whatever your coffee preference is, just make sure it is good and hot. Leaving the spoon in the glass pour in your boiling water and stir until the coffee and sugar have completely dissolved. Add a good shot of Irish whiskey.

In the pub we would used Paddy's or Powers but feel free to use any Irish Whiskey you like. Place your glass, (or mug,) on a small plate for serving. Over the back of a spoon float double cream on top of the coffee. You now should be left with something that resembles a glass of Guinness. If you plan on using cream from an aerosol can, or drizzling creme de menthe over the top...., don't.

Now, back to how I ended up working in a pub in Ireland. In the early seventies, when I was a mere fourteen, (yes, I'm that old,) my father, in his infinite wisdom, thought it would be a good idea to uproot our family and move it to the midlands of Ireland. Another stroke of genius he had, was to deposit me in a Catholic school run by the Christian brothers. My father was a staunch protestant originally from Londonderry, Northern Ireland, so I really don't know where his head was at this time. After a very short period of time, the "brothers" realized that I would never be a candidate for the seminary, and I was left to my own devices.

At fifteen, while still at school, I got my first bar job. I was, of course, delighted to have a few "punt" in my pocket at the end of the week. It also gave me great pleasure to flaunt my presence in the bar to the few lay teachers that came in.

Initially I was only allowed to serve drinks to the tables and clear away the empty glasses. But eventually, I was permitted to make drinks, including the ever popular Caife Gaelach and under strict supervision, build a pint of Guinness.

At closing time, while the "punters" where enjoying a "lock in", I was stationed at the front door leaning on a push broom.

After an hour or so, on spotting the police strolling in our direction, my job was to run into the pub shouting "Garda, Garda."

At this the singing would stop, and the pub would descend into semi darkness. The police at this time new exactly what was happening, they didn't care as long as the pub was cleared out when they walked back about twenty minutes later.

In fact, it was quite common to have an officer of the law sitting in the semi darkness finishing his pint.

Of course, this would never happen at the Passage. If you do happen to see me leaning on a push broom after closing, I am sorry to say that I am probably just sweeping up the cigarette butts.




This week's video is from the Serbian band, "Irish Stew of Sindidun:" Why.

I dig this band - C:

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Home-Made Liqueurs, #4: Galliano

Way back in the day, the mid-seventies to be specific, THE popular drink was the Harvey Wallbanger. Just yer garden variety screwdriver, but with some Galliano on top. And THAT made all the difference.
Galliano: That golden liqueur in the bordering-on-obscenely long bottle, with its subtle blend of flavors: vanilla, liquorice, citrus, the work together to bring out the flavors of its surrounding elements without overpowering them.

Now, you can make up a batch of this stuff all on your own thanks to the Home-Made Liqueurs series from Greatest Drink in the World... This Week!

Home-Made Galliano


2 cups sugar

⅔ cup water

½ tsp of anise extract

½ teaspoon of vanilla extract

3 teaspoons lemon or lime juice

4 drops yellow food coloring

2 ½ cups of 80 proof vodka


▸ Bring water and sugar to a boil, stirring frequently.

▸ Lower heat and simmer for fifteen minutes.

▸ Add flavorings, lemon/lime juice and coloring.

▸ Let cool to room temperature.

▸ Add your vodka.

▸ Pour into a tightly corked bottle and store for six weeks.

Makes one quart.

Galliano is the primary ingredient in the Harvey Wallbanger, of course, (named after that giant rabbit from the Jimmy Stewart movie, Harvey, who, according to legend, got totally plowed on Screwdrivers and Galliano while filming and smashed through some scenery, hence the name!), but Galliano is also one of the main ingredients in many other famous cocktails, too.

One can't have a Yellow Bird without Galliano in it. It is always in a Golden Cadillac, and a Golden Dream would be no dream at all without a drop or two!

In fact, HERE'S a little hint, most cocktails with the word "Wall," "Yellow" or "Golden" in the name, PROBABLY contain Galliano.

Yup. Its just that big a deal.

So, get in on it at your home bar with a home-made batch of the stuff, or brew some up for a gift for a Wallbanger enthusiast!

Just make sure to put it in a REALLY long bottle for the full effect!

Oh, by the way, a Slow Comfortable Screw Against the Wall ... is ALSO made with Galliano.

Think about it!





A little inspirational music for this week's Completely Unrelated Video. "Let The Sun Shine In."