I bumped into my neighbor at the liquor store the other day and we got into a conversation about what we liked to drink. After our standbys were discussed, he asked if I’d ever heard of a Cosmo. I told him I liked them, but only when made properly. Otherwise they tend to be overly sweet. He agreed; they had to be made properly.
And then he got me…
He said, when people put too much Cosmo in the drink, it makes it way too sweet. I was a bit confused for a second and I suppose the confusion showed on my face. Too much Cosmo in the drink? He said he thought I knew what a Cosmo was; The bottle of Cosmo. He said it was a shame when people use too much of it, because (and he motions with his hands) it’s about this big and costs X. (It runs $14 to $18 depending upon your area).
I told him I’d never used the premix Cosmo, only the actual recipe. He was literally stunned. He had no idea there was a real recipe for a Cosmo; just that it was some sort of bottled mix. So I told him briefly what was in it.
Citrus Vodka, Cointreau, Lime Juice, Cranberry and Orange Twist Garnish ~> Cosmo Link
I didn’t think he could surprise me again, but…
He didn’t know what Cointreau was…
High end orange liqueur; not triple sec. And I walked him over to the liqueurs and showed him various other premium orange liqueurs, too. I lose track of the fact that liquor shelves are filled with so many spirits that those I find commonplace might not be so common to everyone.
He said it was time for me to have another party very soon. Cocktail sampling session with tasting is most likely what will happen. But that’s ok. I love introducing people to new flavors and teaching them a few basics that they can take back for their own home bar and party use.
The Point of the Story
My neighbor is not a newbie drinker. He is a professional, married and has grandchildren. He was a regular at the bar I worked at a few years back. I’ve seen him drink beer, cocktails and straight liquor. Without generalizing people, he is just like you, me and every person reading this. He knows what he likes to drink and chooses to drink it. The difference between my neighbor and some who choose to look around at what’s going on in the cocktail world is he just doesn’t know the options that are available for the things he already likes to drink.
A side note; the bottled Cosmo mix he’s buying already has all the ingredients in it. It’s a Ready To Drink bottled cocktail. He’s mixing it with more liquor and ingredients to get the right flavor for his taste. Straight from the bottle is just too sweet for his taste and it doesn’t match the amount of bang for his buck he’d like from a cocktail. I imagine this is the same for many people.
I’d Like Your Input
This is where I think everyone’s input toward cocktail discussion is useful. Everyone has a “go to” drink or handful of favorite drinks that they have tweaked to their liking. The drink might be as simple as a Gin & Tonic, a favorite premix taken to the next level with a few extra additions or a tweak on a classic or contemporary cocktail that just sends the sip to the next stage of flavor goodness. This isn’t rocket science. It doesn’t take a master mixologist with seventeen ingredients consisting of special infusions and homemade bitters or a bartender who’s been behind the stick for six months or six years to make suggestions on what they do to make their drink fit their flavor palate. How you make your drink at home might be just the idea someone six states away or half a world away reads about and thinks… Why didn’t I think of that?
What Are You Drinking
I want to know What Are You Drinking? Is it simply Rum & Coke? Tell me. Give me the measurements you use, any special tweaks that make it stand out whether it’s bitters or garnish and don’t forget to let me know how you serve it; over ice, straight up, neat, tall glass, short glass… you get the idea. And I would love, love, love a photo. Take that photo with a phone, app, digital camera… whatever you’ve got. Again, perfection isn’t the goal.
The combined ideas, suggestions, recipes and photos that are enjoyed every day by readers just like you will be shared in future cocktail conversation and postings on the site and Facebook page for others to try for their own enjoyment. I hope you’ll join the conversation by sending in your drink tips, favorite recipe tweaks and photos to go along with those. Email your ideas, recipes and photos to the address below. And thanks in advance!
Cheri Loughlin – The Intoxicologist
Str8upcocktails @ gmail.com