Sunday, August 16, 2009

Punch Drunk Love

My husband and I are celebrating our five-year wedding anniversary this week. Anniversaries are a great excuse to buy champagne and drink out of fancy glasses. 

Since we were camping on our actual anniversary, I didn't serve our Sofia Blanc de Blancs out of the awesome Waterford toasting glasses my friend Amy bought us as a wedding gift, but rather we had it in IKEA champagne flutes with our breakfast of campfire-cooked eggs and bacon. 

We toasted and drank our first sip straight and then added some orange juice and drank the rest as mimosas. My husband is a gentleman who let me have most of the champagne. Later that morning when his drunk bride fell in the lake after stepping into the canoe like it was the most stable conveyance ever, he made sure he asked if I was okay before he burst out laughing.

Now that we are back home I decided to mix up a batch of the punch I created for our wedding reception. I think weddings and celebrations of any sort are a good reason to create a signature drink that in some way captures the essence of the event. Our wedding color was green like Midori Liqueur. Therefore, I used Midori to create this punch:

Midori Wedding Punch:
  • 1 can Minute Maid Frozen Limeade
  • 3 of the limeade can of water
  • 1 can Dole Pineapple Juice
  • 1/2 liter of 7-up
  • Enough Midori Melon Liqueur to give it a great green color
  • Frozen honeydew melon balls and or ice ring made with limeade

Monday, August 10, 2009

Hoisting a Brownie with the Driscolls

Ever since I posted about liquor sales so far this year in Iowa, I've been curious about who in Iowa is drinking all the Black Velvet and Dr. Mcgillicuddy's Cherry Schnapps. Well, on a trip to my husband's hometown for his class reunion last weekend, I found out, and the answer surprised me.
My husband grew up in what, to me, seems like the ideal small town. The kind where the neighbors are good friends he's known all his life. I arrive in town and notice Bob and Linda Driscoll are hanging out on their porch. I've heard that their summer drink of choice is a drink they call the Brownie. I headed across the street to catch up and find out just what this drink was all about. 

They have new comfy patio furniture and a plaque on their patio with a picture of a margarita on it and the inscription "Hoist--The Driscolls."  "Hoist" is what the Driscolls say when it's time for a drink. When I told them I wanted to try a Brownie, Bob headed inside to freshen Linda's drink and make one for me. 

Bob came back with a mug of Black Velvet Whiskey mixed with unsweetened iced tea. It was very refreshing and very strong. I was feeling tipsy and talkative after just one glass, so of course I asked for another. This isn't my favorite iced tea-themed drink of the season, but I liked it, and I liked the company.

However, it was getting late. It was time for me to walk down to the town's bar, The Sundown, where my husband's band was playing. After a few songs and a few beers, I was feeling pretty good. I asked the bartender for a round of his most popular shot for me and the band. He made Cherry Bombs. Turns out Cherry Bombs are a tasty mixture of Red Bull and, you guessed it, Dr. Mcgillicuddy's Cherry Schnapps. 

When I woke the next morning with a terrible headache, I realized that, at least for that weekend, the person in Iowa drinking all the Black Velvet and cherry schnapps was me. Headache aside, I recommend both of these concoctions. As the Driscolls would say, "Hoist!"

Monday, August 3, 2009

Betty's Bar Guide

It was my mom Betty's birthday last week. So much of what I've shared with you and want to share with you I've learned from her. But since she's no longer with us, and all my attempts to share fun mom stories seem to come across as morbid to other people, I've held back. 

However, her birthday reminded me of a great gift she gave me one year. She found the Bar Guide in this picture at a junk store. Before the Bar Guide gift I'd often been disappointed with gifts from mom. But I was thrilled beyond words with this Bar Guide and just kept spinning the knob and reading off the recipes for crazy old-timey drink after crazy old-timey drink. There are 80 in all. My mom said, "I finally figured out that I can just buy you alcohol and old junk for gifts and you'll be happy." So true.

From time-to-time I will share a recipe from the Bar Guide with you. But be warned, they almost all involve raw eggs, and you need to know about things like jiggers. The definition I found for jigger is a measure of one drink of liquor.  Since most drinks call for two jiggers, a jigger glass is like the metal one shown above with the smaller side measuring one jigger and the larger measuring two jiggers. You could always just use a shot glass because it's pretty much the same thing.

Since Gin and Tonic was my mother's little helper of choice, I dialed in number 39 on the Bar Guide. Here's what it says: Place 3 ice cubes into tall highball glass. Add 2 jiggers Gin. Crush 1/2 slice lemon. Fill with Tonic Water. My mom used lime instead of lemon. I think she also used more than two jiggers of gin, but you can't blame her when she was stuck with a kid like me.