Edit ModuleShow Tags

Drinks at the Ready: Batched Cocktails


Published:

Photo by Joy Summers

This post is presented by Wüsthof Wusthof

The days of waiting 20 minutes or more for a craft cocktail have thankfully drawn to a close. With hotspots like Hola Arepa, Marche and Eat Street Social’s Torpedo Room making some large stashes of drinks before the evening gets swinging, receiving a top shelf mixed beverage is just a bottle pour away. Some restaurants, like The Strip Club Meat & Fish in St. Paul have even taken to putting special drinks in kegs to have them at the ready for the whims of their guests.

I was at a party recently with Erik Eastman, the Easy of Easy & Oskey where he mixed up several servings of a sublime Old Fashioned and poured them all into a bottle. As guests ran dry, their glasses were simply filled with ice and topped off. It was as genius as it was easy (pun intended).

The strategy works best with classic cocktails like negronis, martinis or an Old Fashioned. He says, “If you’re going to the trouble of batching cocktails, you’ll get better results by making a larger sized cocktail and storing it in a bottle.” The key to any entertaining success is to keep it inside your personal comfort zone. No one wants to come to your house to see you running around, freaking out about the details. Throw some really good booze in a pitcher and pour liberally.

For a martini, Eastman says, “You could just buy the ingredients already measured out. Get a 750ml of Tanqueray, use half a 750 ml of Dolin dry vermouth, dump them in a pitcher and stir them up to order. I like to serve with the bitters, dropping them over the glass, because I like that kind of thing.” He suggests using an orange bitters or something citrus like the new Easy & Oskey grapefruit bitters.

With making a batched cocktail at home, the biggest debate the experts have is whether to stir or not to stir. While some think the drinks are best when diluted just before consumption, we prefer the easier-on-the-host option of stirring the entire batch beforehand. Explains Eastman, “Most people don’t realize that you need to stir these drinks – stir it for a solid 30 seconds. You wouldn’t think that’s all that long, until you’re standing there and your guests are watching you spend all this quality time with a spoon and a pitcher.” He also stresses the importance of tasting your concoction constantly, just as any professional bartender does. It is remarkable the difference in cocktail flavor between a drink simply poured and served and one that loosens up and mellows with the dilution that stirring affords.

“Remember, it isn’t rocket science. This is just drinking,” he says. Get great ingredients and enjoy.

 

Easy’s Easy Old Fashioneds

2 oz high quality rye (such as New Richmond)
1 oz good bourbon (such as Granddad 114)
2 tsp rich simple syrup (2:1 sugar to water, recipe variation to follow)
½ teaspoon of bitters (preferably cherry vanilla)

Multiply the amount of ingredients by guests. Pour over ice in a large pitcher. Stir vigorously for a solid 30 seconds. Taste. Adjust syrup/bitters/dilution as necessary. Strain mixture into an easy to pour vessel. Serve at will, or even better—let your guests help themselves. Garnish with a large swath of orange peel.

 

Holiday Spiced Rich Simple Syrup

This is perfectly seasonal spiced syrup. For more basic flavors, simply omit the spices.

2 parts (300 grams) Muscovado (unrefined brown) sugar
1 part (150 grams) water
¼ cup allspice berries
1 teaspoon clove

Combine in a small pot over medium high flame. Simmer until all sugar is completely dissolved. Turn off heat. Allow to completely cool and steep for one hour.
Strain to a small jar with a lid.
Store in the refrigerator.
Keeps indefinitely.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

About This Blog

Minnesota Monthly's Taste Blog answers your restaurant and dining questions, dishes on latest discoveries, reflects on breaking news, and generally brings the plate to the page with a skilled crew of experts: Learn more about the Taste bloggers.

Have a food-related question? Email rhutton@mnmo.com

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »Taste Blog

Pineapple in Every Bite Upside-Down Cake Recipe

Enjoy this twist on the classic cake with chunks of sweet, juicy pineapple maximizing the fruit-to-cake ratio in every taste

3 Drinks to Give Winter the Kiss-Off

West Seventh in St. Paul is bursting with drink options to usher in spring (which is just around the corner, right?)

Minnesota-Grown Greens Now Available Year Round

New locally and sustainably produced Revol Greens makes eating clean and green throughout the year even easier

What to Buy for the Perfect Minnesota Home Bar

From vodka, gin, bourbon, rum, and beyond: Minnesota spirit-makers recommend the best home-bar companions

Quick Moroccan Chicken over Couscous Recipe

Enjoy the exotic flavors of a long-simmered tagine in this easy version that’s quick enough for a weeknight

No-Fail Caramel Corn Recipe

Celebrate National Caramel Corn Day with this sweet crunchy treat—no special equipment needed with this easy recipe

Best Restaurant Bargains Before A Target Field Minnesota Twins Game

They're offering baseball specials, but do you know where to go? Check out these good deals on food before Twins games.

3 Things to Eat This Week: April 4-8

Tropical cake, drinkable flowers, and some mouth-searing spice

Edina Bistro Celebrates National Peanut Butter & Jelly Day

Pinstripes offers a sophisticated twist on the childhood favorite with a five-course meal for two in honor of PB&J Day (April 2)
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags