spirits

2 Muses

Today I am inspired to create 2 signature cocktails inspired by 2 women who are different, yet the same. My muses are Hadley Hemingway and Zelda Fitzgerald. Hadley and Zelda were contemporaries and acquaintances, but never friends. They had the same stomping grounds: Paris in the 1920s. Both women inspired their famous husbands, but I would not lessen them as women by using the old adage about “behind every good man” because they are every bit inspiring on their own.

Hadley’s cocktail is gin-based. Let’s face it, gin is the spirit that comes to mind for most when thinking about the 1920s and classic cocktails. It’s a spin on Gin & Jam (not Gin & Juice LOL)- simple and sweet like Mrs Hemingway Numero Uno, the schnapps a nod to The Hemingways best times on holiday in Austria, the lime for the less-than-sweet times that Hadley endured.

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“We ate well and drank well and cheaply and slept well and warm together and loved each other.” ~ A Moveable Feast

As it happens with most things related to Zelda, her cocktail is a bit more complicated. Inspired by the Mint Julep, The Zelda packs a bourbon-based punch and a shot of Southern sweetness with peach simple syrup and a rim of brown sugar. The perfect cocktail for shimmying out of your stockings for a midnight splash in the city fountain!

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“They slipped briskly into an intimacy from which they never recovered.” ~This Side of Paradise

Peach Simple Syrup

Ingredients:

  • 1 C granulated sugar
  • 1 C water
  • 2 C frozen peaches

Instructions:

  1. In a medium saucepan combine water, sugar, and peaches. Over medium heat, bring the mixture to a boil, whisking constantly.
  2. Reduce heat and simmer until sugar is completely dissolved.
  3. Remove from heat and cover. Steep peaches in sugar syrup 30 minutes.
  4. Strain syrup to remove the peach bits and allow to cool thoroughly before use. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

For more on Hadley & Zelda, check out:

Z a Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald

The Paris Wife

My Pinterest board; Scott, Zelda, and Company

Shout out to my local purveyors of spirits S.D. Strong Distilling & Dark Horse Distillery

 

Homemade Booze: Spiced Rum: UPDATE

Ahoy maties! It’s been a few days since the first installment of this post and at this moment I’m tasting a little spiced rum in my office, at noon, on a Tuesday so that I can give you a proper update. Taking one for the team I am!

Day 3/5:

Day 3

Day 3/5: All the spices have made their way to the bottom of the jar, and the rum is darker, but starting to look a little cloudy. Maybe I should’ve removed the ginger?

Day 4/5:

Day 4/5: Last day for the spices to steep with the rum before filtration...

Day 4/5: Last day for the spices to steep with the rum before filtration…

Filtration:

When it came time for filtration, I used the same system I used when I filtered my Limoncello & Clemencello back in January.

Here's a shot of my very complicated filtration system set up on my dining room table. Just a couple of mason jars and some cone-style coffee filters. I did end up changing out the coffee filter on each jar twice, because I was getting impatient at how slowly the filtration was going down.

Here’s a shot of my very complicated filtration system set up on my dining room table. Just a couple of mason jars and some cone-style coffee filters. I did end up changing out the coffee filter on each jar twice, because I was getting impatient at how slowly the filtration was going down.

Here’s a video of me filtering the rum. Rest assured, my scratchy voice has been been remedied by a few sips of the rum. ­čÖé Follow my YouTube page & look for more videos from me in the future.

Tasting notes:

The rum has a nice depth of flavor. The star anise is the first note that I catch both on the nose & the palette, with the cinnamon and other spices behind it in the background and the vanilla giving it a soft warmth. I like that licorice taste (ouzo is one of my favorite spirits), but if you’re not into it, I would omit the star anise, or maybe use half a pod, or remove the pod a day or two into the steeping process.

In case you missed part one, including the recipe for Spiced Rum you can find it here.

To check out my other adventures in home booze-making check out my Limoncello/Clemencello series here:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Homemade Booze: Limoncello/Clemencello Update: Week One

It’s the end of Week One and I’ve been religiously shaking my mason jars of infusing vodka each morning. 3 more weeks before I can make my water & sugar mixture and have some drinkable limoncello & clemencello. Needless to say, documenting my experience online has made me very popular with my friends, who like me, are eager to give it a taste. As shown above, both jars are beginning to change color: clemencello on the left, limoncello on the right. I think I need to start pinning some recipes to make with my finished product… Check out my boards on Pinterest here

Homemade Booze: Limoncello & Clemencello

This week I decided to try my hand at making my own limoncello. Which is simple so far, but once I started I was inspired to try making a clemencello, that is a limoncello made from clementines instead of lemons. Basically, limoncello is an adult lemonade. The lemony flavor and bright yellow color come from the citrus oils in the zest of the lemons. You can drink it straight or mix it with something like iced tea for a twist on an Arnold Palmer. By the way, in the above pic, that’s Clemencello-to-be on the left, Limoncello-to-be on the right.

DIY LIMONCELLO

I don’t know for sure yet, but I’m estimating this will make 6-8C of finished product.

Ingredients:

  • the zest of 10 lemons (ended up to be about 1C in total)
  • 750ml vodka (at least 40 proof) I used McCormick brand because #drinklocal
  • 1 1/2C water
  • 2 1/2C granulated sugar

Other stuff you’ll need:

  • a big jar with a lid (needs to hold at least 1qt)
  • a zester or plane
  • coffee filter
  • medium saucepan
  • bottles to put your finished product in

Here’s what I’ve done so far:

  1. Zest the lemons. The pith, or white layer of the lemon is bitter so be careful to only grate off the yellow part of the peel.

    Here's a pic of the lemons being zested.

    Here’s a pic of the lemons being zested.

  2. In a large jar combine the zest and vodka.
  3. Cover and put in a cool dark place to infuse for 4 weeks. (I know, it’s a long time to wait.)
  4. Shake jar each day to evenly distribute the flavors.

DIY CLEMENCELLO:

Makes an estimated 6-8C of finished product.

Ingredients:

  • juice of 15 clementines (about 1/4C)
  • 750ml vodka (at least 40 proof)
  • 1 1/2C water
  • 2 1/2 C granulated sugar

Other stuff you’ll need:

  • a big jar with a lid (needs to hold at least 1qt)
  • a zester or plane
  • coffee filters
  • medium saucepan
  • bottles to put your finished product in

Here’s what I’ve done so far:

  1. Zest the clementines. The skin of the clementines is thinner and more oily than the lemon zest so less is needed.

    Much less zest came off the clementines but it was much wetter, so I think it will pack a bigger flavor punch!

    Much less zest came off the clementines but it was much wetter, so I think it will pack a bigger flavor punch!

  2. In a large jar combine the zest and vodka.
  3. Cover tightly and put in a cool dark place to infuse for 4 weeks. (I know, it’s a long time to wait.)
  4. Shake jar each day to evenly distribute the flavors.

So now I play the waiting game while the limoncello/ clemencello gets all infused and happy. Stay tuned for chapter 2! Follow the story day-by-day on my Twitter and Instagram!