Category Archives: Mixology Monday

Mixology Monday LXXIV: San Juan Sling

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For my second attempt at Mixology Monday, I decided to stick with the theme of this blog and pull something from Playboy’s Host & Bar Book. Andrea at Gin Hound selected cherries as this month’s MxMo theme, so between maraschino, kirsch, and cherry brandy I had a lot of options, but eventually settled on the San Juan Sling. I’d recently done up a pitcher of Singapore Slings for a party, and I think that may have influenced my choice a bit.

San Juan Sling

San Juan Sling
3/4 oz. light rum
3/4 oz. cherry liqueur
3/4 oz. Benedictine
1/2 oz. lime juice
Iced club soda
Lime peel
Shake rum, cherry liqueur, Benedictine and lime juice well with ice. Strain into tall 14-oz. glass half-filled with ice. Add soda. Twist lime peel above drink and drop into glass.

For this recipe I used Bacardi silver and  Bol’s Cherry Brandy.

This ended up being a really nice drink. The Benedictine is the dominant flavour, but it doesn’t take over at all. Rum and cherry make up the finish, and the lime mostly just keeps the sweetness in check. Next party I may do a pitcher of these instead of the Singapore.

I can’t find much on the history of this one. It doesn’t show up in any of my books, and the few recipes I can find online are identical to the Playboy version. There are mentions of a variation that adds Angostura, but no recipes.

This post is part of my project to make, and where possible improve upon, all the cocktails in “Playboy’s Host and Bar Book” from 1971.

Here’s the roundup of MxMo LXXIV posts: Part 1, Part 2

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Mixology Monday LXXIII: Jack Dandy

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This will be my first attempt at a Mixology Monday post. I thought about keeping to my ongoing project instead of coming up with an original drink, but that would make sticking to Cardiff Cocktails‘ “Witches’ Garden” theme a bit tricky since the only fresh herb (or root, spice or bean) used in the entire “Playboy’s Host and Bar Book” is mint, which seemed a bit too obvious a choice.

So I decided to mix up something original with about the only ingredient I could gather right outside my window – dandelion. I thought perhaps dandelion-root coffee might perform well as a substitute for coffee in certain cocktails. I didn’t want anything that had coffee as the main ingredient, though, which eliminated a good chunk of the spiked-coffee type drinks. However, the Black Jack (or at least one of the drinks by that name) seemed a likely starting point. This cocktail apparently originated in 1914, and consists of equal parts brandy, kirschwasser, and cold coffee, with a sugared rim.

So I went out, dug up a dandelion root, and took a trip to the emergency room (long story). Once I was back on my feet I washed, dried, and roasted the root, which luckily gave me just enough for making 4 test drinks.

Substituting dandelion-root coffee worked better than I expected – I thought it would be a reasonable, but not perfect, stand-in. Instead, it hinted at coffee but was also very much its own thing. I tried a few proportions, but I like the equal parts the best. I also took the sugar off the rim and put it directly in the drink. The combination of ingredients really showcases the dandelion root flavours well – the smokiness from roasting the roots plays nicely with the brandy, and there’s a sort of nutty, chocolate flavour that enhances and is enhanced by the kirsch.

So here it is, a dandelion variation on the Black Jack:

Jack Dandy

Jack Dandy
20 ml brandy
20 ml kirschwasser
20 ml dandelion-root coffee*, chilled
10 ml simple syrup
Stir all ingredients together with ice, strain into chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a dandelion flower.
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*Dandelion-Root Coffee

Dig up dandelion roots. Wash them, chop them fine, dry them on a baking sheet for about 2 hours at 200° F. Add 2 tablespoons dried root to a saucepan. Roast over medium high heat until nicely browned. Pour in 1 cup of water. Let simmer, covered, for about 15 min. Strain. NOTE: 2 tablespoons per cup makes a pretty strong coffee, which is good for the cocktail but might be a bit much for drinking straight.

Edit: Here’s the roundup of this month’s Mixology Monday entries. Some great looking drinks there!