With September’s theme of “The Unknown” just slipping off into the sunset, what if we consider something a bit more known? Like improving on a drink to your taste by splitting an ingredient with another. It might not be everybody’s concept of perfection, but it is closer to yours. Perhaps introducing our host for MxMo this month, Joel of the Southern Ash blog, might make this idea better understood.
This month’s theme slated for October 20th is one that will get you looking at your liquor shelves for spiritous cousins for the theme is “Perfect Symmetry.” Please read Joel’s full announcement post, but here is a brief description:
Perfect symmetry is your theme this month! A “perfect” drink splits the liquor or liqueur evenly between two related ingredients. The most common “perfect” drink is a Perfect Manhattan where the vermouth is split between sweet and dry to create an altogether different experience. A perfect Old Fashioned splits the bourbon and rye are both used to create a singularly distinct experience. When done well, splitting the liquor lets each of the unique flavors and components of the shine through. Because they share a background, they don’t war with each other but instead you get both the mellow sweetness of the bourbon with the spicy backbone of the rye in that Old Fashioned… Why make a choice when you can have it all?! Your challenge is to create a new cocktail or explore an existing cocktail that splits the liquor or liqueur evenly in a “perfect” manner… Can you challenge yourself with gin and vodka in a light summer appropriate beverage? Perhaps you’ll delve deep into splitting Sambuca and ouzo in an anise-flavored digestive? Getting bored with tequila, maybe a perfect margarita with the backbone of mezcal will reawaken your appreciation? Campari too assertive for you? Maybe make a Perfect Negroni with Aperol lightening the weight. Let you imagination run wild!
While that description, so many pairings come to mind like Green and Yellow Chartreuses, Lillet Blanc and Rouge, gin and genever, and never mind rum combinations (including rum-like spirits like cachaça). Perhaps split more than one ingredient in the recipe to make something even more complex? With all those options and more, there is something for everyone to join in on the fun. Briefly, here’s how to participate:
- Find or create a recipe that has “Perfect” (or split base spirit or liqueur) component, and then post the recipe, including a photo and your remarks, on your blog, tumblr, or website. If you lack one of those, feel free to post on eGullet’s Spirits and Cocktails forum.
- Include the MxMo logo in your post, plus links back to the Mixology Monday and Southern Ash sites. Once the roundup post is put up, updating your post to include a link to that one as well would be appreciated.
- Submit a link one of three ways by midnight on October 20th — leave a comment on the announcement post, send an email to southernashblog(at)gmail(dot)com, or tweet Joel at @Southerashblog.
That gives us two weeks to concoct “perfect” cocktails. Wait, that sounds a little lofty, but remember that we’re splitting spirits and liqueurs, not splitting atoms here. Is Fernet Branca too much for you? Is there perhaps another amaro to sooth the savage beast? Can’t figure out if lemon or lime juice would complement the spirit and other components more? Why not use both? Does “cherry liqueur” in that old recipe mean Heering or Maraschino, or why bother choosing? I am eagerly looking forward to what this herd of cats can conjure up!