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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Porto Flip

Porto Flip Cocktail

Porto Flip

45 ml Porto ruby
1 tsp. sugar syrup (1:2)
8 ml Benedictine
1 small egg
Shake all ingredients vigorously. Strain into a glass. Dust with a nutmeg.

Porto Flip Cocktail in a vintage glass

Port Flip (Bariana ver.)

50 ml ruby Porto
4 dash curacao
2 dash creme de noyaux
1 bsp. sugar syrup (1:2)
1 egg yolk
Shake all ingredients vigorously. Strain into a glass. Dust with a nutmeg.

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Tom and Jerry

As you know the most of Russian and Ukrainian are orthodox christians. The Orthodox Christmas is celebrated January 7. Actually we don’t drink cocktail on the Christmas. On the over hand Americans has very interesting Christmas drink – Tom and Jerry. This drink is hot egg nog – the winter beverage with alcohol, eggs and milk or water.

The Tom and Jerry is very old drink. The recipe we may found in the first cocktail book – How to Mix Drinks, or Bon-Vivants Companion by Jerry “Professor” Thomas (1862). Some people say that Tom and Jerry was invented by Thomas. He specified in his book that this concoction has another name – Jerry Thomas. In one interview Thomas says that he named the drink in honor of two his mouses – Tom and, of course, Jerry. But we have and alternate story. It is currently reported that Tom and Jerry drink was invented by London sport writer Pierce Egan in the 1820s. The name is a reference to two character from his book Life in London – Jerry Hawthorn and Corinthian Tom.

The famous Harry Craddock wrote that “… The Tom and Jerry and the Blue Blazer … were the greatest cold weather beverages of that era”. And I completely agree with this opinion.

The Tom and Jerry Cocktail (Коктейль Том и Джерри)

The recipes of Tom and Jerry drink is so simple. This hot egg nog contain brandy as main alcohol, rum, eggs and sugar. Optional ingredients are spice and milk. The authentic recipe from Jerry Thomases book is:

12 EGGS.

Beat the whites of the eggs to a stiff froth, and the yolks until they are as thin as water, them mix together and add the spice and rum, thicken with sugar until the mixture attains the consistence of a light batter.

Take a small bar glass, and to one table-spoonful of the above mixture, add one wine-glass of brandy, and fill the glass with boiling water, grate a little nutmeg on top.

The some points of this recipe is very interesting. First – the sugar. Five pounds of sugar or 190 grams per one eggs. It seems very, very, very sweet. Second point is spice. I hate ground spice, thus I try to use spiced rum instead.

My recipe of famous Tom and Jerry drink is (approx 5-6 drinks):

The Tom and Jerry egg nog (Горячий эгг ног Том и Джерри)

Tom and Jerry

the base (“batter”):
2 eggs
10 ml rich Jamaican rum (5 ml per one egg)
140 g sugar (70 g per one egg)
Separate the eggs. Mix yolks with rum and beat until it are thin as liquid. Beat the whites until stiff froth. Then mix all together and add sugar. Mix well.

drink (one servings):
20 ml brandy
40 ml spiced rum
2 tablesponsful “batter”
add boiling water or steamed milk
Stir well. Serve in the ceramic cup or London dock glass. Garnish by grating a little nutmeg on top.

I use kitchen handheld electric mixer for execution. I whip the white of the eggs in stiff froth and add beaten yolks with rum, then add sugar. I use mix of the refined sugar and demerara brown sugar.

Actually Tom and Jerry drink with water is no good as with milk. The Tom and Jerry drink is very delicious sweet holiday drink. Marry Christmas!

The Tom & Jerry drink (Напиток Том и Джерри (горячий эгг ног))

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