Итак, несмотря на опасения некоторых постоянных читателей, снова с вами в формате лонг-рида. Успешно отправив тягу к лапидарности в Instagram, теперь я могу сполна разлиться мыслью по древу своего уютного стендалона 8)

Сегодняшний наш объект – Шерри Кобблер (Sherry Coobler) [на самом деле, с точки зрения современного языка было бы привычнее и понятнее хересный, потому как эту разновидность вина мы называем сейчас именно херес, но я, отдавая дань историчности напитка, решил употреблять именно это старомодное слово, которое было в обиходе и среди русского дворянства в XIX веке, что нашло свое отражение в классической русской литературе. И если современное херес – это калька испанского названия, то шерри – это калька английского, которое, как ни странно, доминировало в позапрошлом веке], так вот, Шерри Кобблер – это один из благороднейших истинно американских смешанных напитков с корнями уходящими в первую треть XIX века. Смешанный напиток, мимо которого не должен пройти [летом] ни один истовый коктейльный энтузиаст.

Wine Cobbler |

На самом деле, по своей историко-миксологической значимости Cobbler практически ничем не уступает самому Коктейлю (реинкарнацию которого мы знаем как Old-Fashioned), его смело можно назвать пращуром всех лонгов и отцом шейка, посудите сами – это, скорее всего, первый смешанный напиток, который готовился в шейкере1 (точнее, шейкеры были придуманы, чтобы облегчить приготовление этого напитка), это первый смешанный напиток, который подавался на льду2, это первый смешанный напиток, который подавался с соломинкой3. И при этом, в отличие от многих современных лонгов, это совершенно благороднейший напиток, ведь он изначально готовился на хересе – очень специфическом испанском специальном вине. Вот такими изысканными были первые лонги начала XIX века4 8)

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Madeira Flip and Boston Flip

As a matter of fact my blog is a place where I constantly confess my love for different mixed drinks. I have not been writing about a disappointing tasting recently – the life is too short for describing things you don’t like. Today the time is ripe for describing my huge love for yet another type of wine flips – Madeira Flip. I’ve gotten acquainted with wine flips not so long ago — I was fascinated by Porto Flip last January, after that I started to discover another type of flips, and thus, to explore different type of fortified wines, which usually are a base spirit of these drinks. Such exploring has secondary effect that I start to extensively use these different types of fortified wines in various cocktails. This broadens my imbibing horizons pretty well – there are only benefits!

Wide usage of fortified wines in flips is due to their powerful character. Actually, flip is not an easy workout for wine inasmuch as egg yolk has its own taste and smell and wine must have a certain potential to pass through this Kogel-mogel.

The Madeira Flip |

One of the best choices in case of flips is Madeira wine. Very aromatic, flavorful, distinctive wine from Portuguese archipelago – Madeira Islands. The main thing that makes Madeira Madeira is a maderization process – longterm moderate heating of wine that forms its unique palate. This effect was discovered accidentally while fortified wines from Madeira were traveling to India and, if they weren’t sold, back. After such long trip around Africa through two oceans wines got constitutive improvements. This way famous Madeira wine was born. Obviously, nobody ships wines around half of the world for producing Madeira now. Maderization is fully performed during the so called estufagem aging process. According to the EU regulations, Madeira wine is regional fortified wine produced only in Madeira Islands from specific grapes varieties such as Sercial, Verdelho, Bual or Malvasia. However, most of reasonably priced Madeiras are produced from Tinta Negra variety. Madeira wines also are classified by sugar content – from Seco (Dry) to Doce (Sweet) and by age (being aged wines).

One of my favorite books in which wine flips are mentioned is New and Improved Bartender’s Manual and a Guide for Hotels and Restaurants by Harry Jonson. You know why? Every described recipe author accompanies with lovely ‘This is a very delicious drink, and gives strength to delicate people’. Certainly! I am such a delicate man which periodically gets strength from wine flips ;) And yeah! They are extremely delicious.

Being a huge fan of flips I have discovered my own flip construction, which was successfully probed on Porto Flip (unfortunately I haven’t yet written the post in English, but if you click the link you can see a couple of photos and read the recipe). In case of Madeira Flip I never add liqueurs, in my humble opinion this wine doesn’t need such improvements.

Madeira Flip

Madeira Flip

50 ml madeira
1 tsp. sugar syrup (1:2)
4 whole quail eggs
Put all the ingredients into a shaker and shake vigorously without ice. Then add a few large ice-cubes and chill the cocktail. Strain into a coupe-glass. Dust with freshly grated nutmeg.

Traditionally, a couple of words about the ingredients. Let’s begin with a sugar syrup questions. Actually many sources prescribe using plain sugar in flips but I think it is not ideal because it’s so difficult to control completeness of granulated sugar dissolving. The most usable form of sugar in the bar is, certainly, syrup. But we should always remember that syrup contains water so it can dilute our cocktails. However, if we don’t need such dilution (actually, it may be important for achieving proper texture and mouthfeel for some drinks), the right way is using strong sugar syrup, for example, 1:2 or even stronger. For my flips I always use a 1:2 syrup which I make from 1 part unrefined Demerara sugar (Billington’s), 1 part quality refined granulated sugar and 1 part water. Also I am always simmer my syrup for some time for the best taste and good preservation (simmering is important if you make a syrup from unrefined sugar).

In reference to the amount of sugar syrup, it totally depends on your tastes and sweetness of Madeira wine that is used. Personally, I prefer rather sweet flips, as you have noticed by now ;)

The next important question is eggs. Yes, I know, that a routine cocktail ingredient is chicken eggs. But I specify quail ones. I think it is the best choice for such a delicate cocktail as flip. Actually, quail eggs have plenty of advantages in comparison with chicken eggs. First off all, raw quail eggs are undoubtedly tastier than chicken’s, next, they are healthier and of course they are cuter! 8) [It seems to be significant for overcoming ovophobia 8)] Delicacy eggs for delicacy cocktails, that’s right! But I should warn, contrary to popular belief that quail eggs are safer [concerning salmonella] than chicken eggs – it isn’t true. Both type of eggs are safe enough if consumed fresh and with certain caution but, in any case, risks can’t be reduced to zero.

As to Madeira, I should admit that I have such a narrow experience here. As a matter of fact, I usually use inexpensive wines, 3-5 years old. And yes, being a sweet tooth imbiber, I prefer sweet full rich Madeira in my flips.

And, finally, if you properly combine these three things, i.e. if you shake the mix as hard as you can and a little harder (I strictly recommend using dry shake with a little cheat in the form of a hawthorn strainer spring in the shaker for the best result), you will obtain an absolutely awesome, no, not drink, but nectar. It tastes so good! Or, wait, no – It DOES taste damn good! :) (It is really difficult to express my admiration for flips using a non-mother tongue). Sure enough, Madeira Flip is an exquisite dessert drink. Madeira brings a ton of sweet dessert tastes to the drink. Cacao and chocolate, nuts, fresh pastry, dried and candied fruits wallow in a thick silky foam. Absolutely wonderful!

The Boston Flip |

Definitely, everything is totally perfect in wine flips, probably except for their strength 8) An ounce and a half of fortified wine is almost nothing in our hectic life, isn’t it? 8) But, fortunately, mankind has successfully solved this problem already, for example with Boston Flip – Madera flip fortified with American whiskey. This cocktail was founded on the stunning Spirited Alchemy Blog this summer and, actually, that was an inspiration :) In spite of the fact that I had bookmarked the same recipe in Cocktails and Mixed Drinks by Anthony Hogg way back last winter 8)

It so happened that I was not in the proper mood, so I didn’t investigate the history of the Boston Flip. However I can’t help mentioning the sophisticated name of the drink. Obviously, it’s impossible to imagine the best name for an old drink with English origin, which consists of imported Madeira (which usually ships by sea) and real American spirit heritage – Rye, isn’t it?

As a rule, a common recipe of Boston Flip prescribes an ounce and a half (or even two ounces) of each wine and whiskey, but I decided not to break my favorite flip construction so I slightly decreased the amount of liquors.

Boston Flip

Boston Flip

30 ml rye whiskey (or bourbon)
30 ml madeira
1 tsp. sugar syrup (1:2)
4 whole quail eggs
Put all the ingredients into a shaker and shake vigorously without ice. Then add a few large ice-cubes and chill the cocktail. Strain into a coupe-glass. Dust with freshly grated nutmeg.

Whatever considerations about the flip ingredients mentioned above are completely appropriate for this drink. The whiskey question gives us some space for experiments. The point is that some old books strongly recommend rye whiskey while some modern resources concede bourbon. I was happy to taste the flip with both type of American whiskey.

As I wrote above, Madeira Flip is my the most exquisite dessert. And usually it takes me about a few second to guzzle it 8) while mixing takes me at least several minutes. It seems to be so disproportionate, but it’s completely righted with whiskey :) Boston Flip allows me to sip the drink more slowly so my pleasure time aspires being equal to working time. Not bad! 8)

Rye plays very well in that flip. If we talk about some pungent and powerful stuff like my favorite Wild Turkey Rye 101 (actually, here, in Ukraine, rye is a very hard-to-find liquor, so, to my great embarrassment, I’ve only got two bottles of rye in my bar cabinet – the above-mentioned Wild Turkey and a Jim Beam Rye), it brings a lot of spicy, peppery, burning notes to the drink. And that works well! Just as it is impossible to spoil dark chocolate with chili pepper, so it is impossible to spoil Madeira Flip with rye 8)

Another, a bit milder, whiskey (especially most of my bourbons) give a not so distinguished flip. All my Boston Flips were excellent drinks but some whiskey were able to play only supporting role, which nevertheless they played very well :) In any case, Boston Flip is an awesome drink that works as well as a dessert and a seductive and hefty nightcap alike.

Creole Contentment

Maybe somebody noticed that the Science Of Drink Blog haven’t had updates in English in a long time. Actually all this time I kept in touch with many American cocktail blogs and had a lot of fun reading them. This kind of silent participation in conversation satisfies me in general, but one day I understood clearly that I would like more. The most important things in our lives are emotions and conversations. Can you imagine something better than good companionship full of intelligent arguments and sharing experience?

Actually, all these ideas agitated me after I had found yet another quite exciting cocktail blog – the Cocktail Quiz by Courtney Randall. Brilliant writings, sophisticated cocktails, wise ideas and curious suggestions inundate this place of the World Wide Web. At that very moment I completely understood how much I missed conversations with that kind of people. And I decided to try once again.

This recipe was found on the Cocktail Quiz blog. Courtney wrote that this cocktail he found in ‘The Gentleman’s Companion: Being An Exotic Drinking Book Or, Around the World with Jigger, Beaker and Flask’ by Baker, Charles Henry Jr. (1939, USA) and that inspired me to buy the book immediately. Some days ago I got the book and now I’m ready to mix :)

Usually I try to clarify the cocktail’s story but in this case it seems impossible. Charles H. Baker Jr. reported that this cocktail was invented somewhere in New Orleans. That was almost all I could clarify 8)

In sober fact I got interested in Creole Contentment Cocktail because it is a good opportunity to utilize one of my favorite special wines – Madeira wine. I have been loving Madeira since I tested a Madeira Flip this winter and now I am going to try something else with this interesting beverage [and quite an unusual cocktail component].

Quite literally, the original formula prescribes equal parts of ingredients (except bitters certainly). But a real expert Charles H. Baker Jr. suggests to cut maraschino down by half, and increase cognac in that ratio. As I’m not a mathematician, quite the opposite I’m a lawyer :) , my recipe is the same as Courtney’s.

The Creole Contentment Cocktail |

Creole Contentment

45 ml cognac
30 ml Madeira
15 ml maraschino liqueur
1 [generous] dash orange bitters
Stir ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a cherry, as Baker says, this drink needs little trimming.

Some words about the ingredients I used. I took Remy Martin V.S.O.P. Cognac and Luxardo Maraschino Originale. I had set two challenges before drinking my first Creole Contentment Cocktail. First, I decided to try both recipes – the original (1:1:1) and the one above. Secondly, I wanted to compare different types of Madeira wine. Actually I’ve got two different, maybe I can say, opposite Madeiras in my bar – Henriques&Henriques Madeira Full Rich (sweet) and Special Dry (the driest one).

Certainly I started with Baker’s version [as I’ve understood it ;) ] with sweet, syrupy and potent Full Rich Madeira. Also I added a generous dash [usually I like to use my smallest bar spoon as a dash, about 1,25 ml] of Fee Brothers West Indian Orange Bitters. These orange bitters have a moderate, smooth taste and I like to add them without scruple :)

As a result I obtained a very interesting cocktail. It was so good! This mix tasted like a noble pearl from the Golden Age of the American Cocktail – sweet and smooth, rich, complex palate with a bunch of refined tastes with lovely chocolate notes. Undoubtedly, it’s an awesome cocktail. As I could have supposed [ ;) ] it was absolutely clear from the first sip that I didn’t want more maraschino or less cognac in my drink. So, challenge #1 was rejected :) The formula was acknowledged as perfect.

The Creole Contentment Cocktail served in a old coupe glass |

The cocktail with Special Dry Madeira wasn’t as satisfactory as the one with Madeira Full Rich. Certainly it still tasted good, but it wasn’t awesome. Neither velvety smoothness nor noble chocolate sweet richness was in that mix. It was a pretty dry, relatively complex cocktail. But in my old-school ‘sweet tooth’ taste spoiled by Martinez [from the Golden Age of Cocktail] it was not interesting enough. Thus, I would object to using dry Madeira in this cocktail even if it is suggested by some respected people 8) Actually I’m positive that only syrupy full-bodied sweet & rich Madeiras are able to give us real creole contentment.

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