Tag Archives: refreshing

Drink of the Week

Stay up late

  • 1 1/2oz Plymouth Gin
  • 1/2oz Pierre Ferrand 1840 Brandy
  • 3/4oz Lemon Juice
  • 3/4oz Simple Syrup
  • Topped with 3oz Soda Water

Garnish: Luxardo Cherry and Orange Wheel

I recently visited Mastros Steakhouse in Beverly Hills.  The new rooftop restaurant ‘The Penthouse at Mastros’ has it’s grand opening this evening and I felt it was important to share this info with my readers!  The beauty and difference of this third floor addition is the inspiring mixology program and hand crafted cocktails that have been put together by Brandon Ristaino and Andrew Trauth.  The upstairs adds more of a cocktail lounge feel to the usual Mastros set up and is described as giving ‘sensual sophistication’ to the dining experience. The Penthouse is a really gorgeous space and I am very happy to be a part of it’s opening.

Having had a chance to sample all of the current cocktails I felt compelled to write about the above one. It’s so simple, yet so delicious! A very refreshing, slightly bubbly but delicate drink, with a gorgeous sweetness from the brandy and subtle orange notes.  Plymouth works beautifully in this drink because it’s not a strongly flavored Gin, there is no intense juniper taste so it’s a great option for vodka drinkers to start enjoying Gin.

There are a number of great cocktails on the menu (I will be talking about them more in coming weeks) and I highly recommend stopping in for a drink when you’re next in Beverly Hills.  Yes, Mastros is known for being expensive and this is still the case but the quality of drinks you will be getting at The Penthouse makes it well worth a trip to the top floor.

Hope to see you there!

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Drink of Week

Beet Daiquiri

  • 2oz Metusalum Rum
  • 3/4oz Beet Juice
  • 3/4oz Fresh Lime Juice
  • 3/4oz Simple Syrup

Original UK recipe:

  • 60ml Havana Club
  • 20ml Beet Juice
  • 20ml Sugar Syrup
  • 20ml Fresh Lime

This drink popped to mind this morning after I was thinking of Beets in a salad and I remembered the wonderful Beet drink that Brand Ambassador for Havana Club, Meimi Sanchez had created.  We had the pleasure (my boyfriend and I) of having an in depth talk with Meimi at London Cocktail Week last year about Havana Club and it’s history.  Part of the talk included tasting a number of cocktails, and the recipe above was the one that stood out for me in particular.  In true Fussy One style, I admit I had never actually tasted a beet until I had this drink, it was so delicious that I have continued to enjoy the deep red-purple Vegetable ever since.

The beauty of this drink is in the vibrant appearance from the natural colors in the Beet juice, the drink itself has an almost ‘healthy’ taste (if that makes sense) and you can taste the vegetable flavors.  I felt like I was cleansing my system even though I was drinking alcohol, hard to describe but it just tastes good for you!

The version we had in London (Uk recipe is above) was created using Havana Club Rum (I adore!).  Obviously most people in the US cannot get their hands on Cuban rum due to the Embargo, so Metusalum Rum is a good alternative.  The overall drink is sweet, refreshing and stunning in appearance, it’s a daiquiri at heart so great for summer.

Anyway, give it a go and let me know what you think!

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Drink of the Week

The Singapore Sling

  • 1 oz. London dry gin
  • 1 oz. Bols Cherry brandy or Cherry Heering
  • 1 oz. Bénédictine
  • 1 oz. fresh lime juice
  • 2 oz. soda water
  • 1 dash Angostura bitters

Combine all ingredients except soda water and bitters and shake in ice.  Strain in an ice-filled collins glass and top with soda water. Dash with Angostura bitters.

Today is my Dads birthday, so I thought it would be a fun idea to put up a drink in his honor. 🙂

This is a drink that has specific memories to me from my childhood. I used to go with my family to Australia almost every year and on a number of occasions we would stop over in Singapore for a few days. I can remember my dad was always excited when he arrived, he would get unpacked then announce to the family “I’m heading down to the bar for the first Singapore sling of the trip.”  As we were fortunate enough to stay at the gorgeous Raffles Hotel on many occasions, it is easy to understand why this was his recurring drink of choice.

When I first decided to write about the Singapore Sling, I hadn’t quite appreciated how much confusion revolved around its recipe. The drink itself is fairly well documented and most would agreed that the first recipe was created by Ngiam Tong Boon at the Long Bar in Raffles Hotel, Singapore, between 1900 and 1915.

However, there is suggestion that the drink may have existed already under the name ‘Straits Sling’ before Tong Boon brought it over to Raffles.  The original recipe has always been disputed, because there are numerous variations in existence that call for different ratios and ingredients.  The above recipe is from research by David Wondrich on the Sling, but if you were to go to Raffles 20 years ago you would receive another version most likely changed sometime in the 1970s by Ngiam Tong Boon’s nephew.

According to Wondrich, new data in the form of a searchable archive of Singapore newspapers shows the earliest reference to a sling is from 1897, nearly 20 years before the Raffles Hotel supposedly created it.  Today, many of the “Singapore Slings” served at Raffles Hotel have been pre-mixed and made using an automatic dispenser that combines alcohol and pineapple juice at pre-set volumes. They are then blended instead of shaken and include pineapple juice to make them more appealing to the ‘American tourists’ in a Tiki style drink.

I always remember seeing a ‘Recipe Card’ in the lobby of Raffles hotel that I believed to be the original recipe, however my research has shown that The Raffles Hotel management has always admitted that the original recipe card was in fact lost at some point during the 20th century.  The recipe in the photo above is variation 26!

With or without pineapple juice, with Cherry Heering or with Dry Cherry Brandy instead, this drink has a lot of history, is refreshing, flavorful and ideal for hot sticky summers in Singapore.

For me the appeal is its sentimental value because of the fond memories I have of my father sitting in the lobby of Raffles enjoying his pink drink.  If I ever return to Singapore in the future i’m sure I will make a point of stopping in at Raffles to order one for myself, if only to keep up the tradition.

Happy Birthday Dad!

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Drink of the Week

Blueberry Thyme

  • 2 oz Gin
  • 3/4 oz Lemon Juice
  • 3/4 oz Simple Syrup
  • 6 Blueberries
  • 2 sprigs of thyme

Garnish: Thyme Sprig floating on top

Muddle the blueberries and thyme in a glass, add the rest of the ingredients then shake in ice and strain in to a cocktail glass.

This drink was created by Greg Bryson, the new Beverage Director at Hostaria Del Piccolo in Santa Monica.  I tried it last week and found it to be absolutely delicious and perfect for the summer.  It is refreshing, sweet and has a gorgeous pink hue from the muddled blueberries.  The thyme gives an interesting scent and flavor to the drink without overpowering it.

I highly recommend heading in to Hostaria Del Piccolo (review coming soon) where you can get this and many other fresh ingredient concoctions on their new summer menu.  On week days you can have it made by Greg himself. Enjoy!

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Drink of the Week

Pimms Cup (or Sj Pimms & Lemonade)

  • 2 cups Pimm’s No. 1 liqueur
  • 2 Tangerines,split in to segments
  • 2 lemons, cut into half-moons
  • 1 Apple, cut in to thin slices
  • 1 English cucumber, washed and sliced
  • 4 cups Sprite or Ginger Ale
  • 6 to 8 large sprigs mint
 

Fill a pitcher 1/4 full with ice.  Add a layer of the Tangerine slices (I prefer these to oranges as they are sweeter), a few lemon and apple slices, some mint leaves and a layer of the cucumber slices. Repeat the layering process until pitcher is full. Pour in the Pimm’s and Sprite or Ginger Ale.  Mix ingredients together with a long-handled spoon. Divide drink among tall glasses, with a few slices of fruit and cucumber in each glass, along with some mint leaves.

We just had the Queens Jubilee so it seems fitting to stick with a British theme for drink of the week.  This is probably my favorite drink from back home.  I used to make it for friends and I to drink out on the lawn at my house on the few hot days of our chilly British summers!  It is an extremely refreshing, strong and easy to make beverage; great for enjoying by the pool, or on picnics whilst watching the cricket (in England of course).  The fruit options can be changed based on what you have at home or what’s in season, the above is the recipe I used to make mine with but you can throw raspberries or strawberries in the mix too.  It all seems to work well, and ends up as a delicious fruit cocktail.

Pimms was first produced by James Pimm in 1823, an Englishman who became the owner of Oyster Bar in London, England.  There are seven Pimm’s products, all of which are known as ‘fruit cups’ however only #1, #3 and #6 are still available. The essential difference between them is the base alcohol used to produce them.  For the above recipe make sure you buy Pimms No 1 (it’s the most popular) because it has subtle spice and citrus flavors.  It is a liquere based on gin and therefore works well with almost any fruits.

Hopefully you will enjoy this British classic as much as I do. Perfect for the coming summer months!

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Drink of the Week

Make yourself a celebratory drink. ‘The Fussy One’ website has been up for 1 month today!

The Bellini

  • 2oz White Peach purée
  • Fill with Prosecco

Garnish: A peach slice (if desired)

Serve in a Champagne flute (original at Harry’s bar is served in a small tumbler – see picture)

You can buy peach purée or frozen peaches year round, however if you have the time it is easy to make your own.  Remove the skin and pits from ripe small white peaches, cut and blend them in a blender on medium until your smooth purée is formed.

This classic is refreshing, sweet and simple.  A celebratory drink that almost everyone has heard of, but for some reason gets ignored or forgotten about and plain champagne is used for toasts instead.  I like this so much more because it has that extra layer of sweetness from the addition of peach as well as the prosecco (sweeter with smaller bubbles than champagne.)

It is said to have been created by bartender Giuseppe Cipriano of Harry’s Bar in Venice Italy.  I have not yet found a book or historian to dispute these origins so am going to write about this version of history and hope it is correct. Harry’s Bar opened in 1931 and was a popular hang out for Ernest Hemingway who had his own table in the corner. Hemingway loved the bar so much he wrote about it in his famous novel “Across the River and into the Trees.” (Copyright 1950) I quote;

“Then he was pulling open the door at Harry’s Bar and was inside and he had made it again, he was home‘ (page 72)

Giuseppe’s son Arigo Cipriani wrote about his father’s drink invention at this bar in his book ‘Harry’s Bar- The Life and Times of the Legendary Venice Landmark’ (Copyright 1996) and claims the Bellini was officially created in 1948. He goes on to explain how Giuseppe’s love for the 15th Century Venetian painter Giovanni Bellini and in particular the pink hue of one of Bellini’s paintings inspired him to create the beverage.  Peaches are in abundance in Italy between June and September, and Giuseppe wanted to create something that captured their essence and transformed their beautiful fragrance in to a drink.  He pureed small white peaches and added prosecco (Italian sparkling wine).  Those who tried it raved about how tasty it was and so it became the new drink at Harry’s Bar (but only for the months the fruit was in season.)

In 1990 Arigo licensed the rights to the drink name to a Mr.Canella and was appalled when he came out with a ‘pre-mixed’ version of his fathers creation, adding raspberry juice to make it pinker.  In 1995 Cipriano won an arbitration against Canella saying it was desecrating the drink origins, his father and Harry’s Bar. Many publications still list this variation (with raspberry juice) as the original recipe, however Arigo argues it is not.

Having tried both, the recipe I have provided is the best in my opinion. Classic and simple.

Make it on a hot summers day and enjoy!

Thank you to all my readers for following me this first month, I have many reviews coming in the next few days as I have been out and about all week to tastings, events, restaurants and mixology bars. Oh the things I have to do for you all! 😉

Keep reading and bottoms up!

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