Dominik MJ aka the opinionated alchemist

since June 2009
job Head Bar Chef and Beverage Manager
interests Doing my Job and find some spare time for my fiancee…


Saratoga Cocktail 15 Jun 2009
5:20 am

This looks like a tweaked Manhattan.
I am not absolutely fond to mix base spirits [even though it is an authentic recipe] - as the specific character of the spirit merges up and can no more identified as such.

However the video like always is great itself!

Saratoga Cocktail 15 Jun 2009
12:06 pm

Dear Robert,

of course featuring two base spirits doesn’t prevent it to be a classic cocktail [classic in the meaning of historic].
I actually don’t like to mix different rums together to achieve a new flavor, because I think, that you can find a specific product, which could features exactly what you are looking for [instead of dark and light rum, you could use aged rum]...

IMHO preparation of cocktails has a different approach as producing spirits, cordials, wines…
Latter can be tweaked by dozen products to achieve the expectations of producer, brand, costumers.
To produce a cocktail supposed to be more straight forward - and I prefer, that it displays the main ingredient.

Still I am respecting the concept of two base spirits drinks - though personally I am opposing this…

Old Cuban Cocktail 14 Jun 2009
11:54 am

Sorry to criticize - though in my believes Champagne has to come from the Champagne in France and is an AOC product.
In the video the sparkling wine Domaine Ste. Michelle was used, not Champagne.
Though I don’t want to bitch against this, because I think, that sparkling wine will do best in this recipe.
The kinda very distinctive flavors of French champagne will be lost in the mix, as the flavors are robust and the proportions are to small on the wine side to keep up…

Tasting Rum in New Orleans 19 Jun 2009
6:23 pm

Hm I am not convinced about this kinda artisanal production…

First of all, the selection what they have is just… boring!
White rum, dark rum, spiced rum… its not, that I don’t find good competitive spirits for that.

Adding vanilla to white rum? I am not absolutely sure, but this might be illegal in most of the rum producing countries. And there is no need, to highlight, how small the quantities are - alcohol is an excellent taste enhancer - adding only a little bit goes a long way!

I would say it is a small and charming producer, but not everything which is small and not industrial is directly artisan!

These are just some thoughts from an opinionated mind!

Piña Colada Cocktail 11 Jul 2010
2:11 am

Hm I am not sure that DonQ was originally used for the Pi

Piña Colada Cocktail 11 Jul 2010
2:20 am

P.S. A pineapple leaves looks gorgeous behind the actual fresh pineapple quarter wheel. And the nuclear glowing maraschino cherry can be substituted with an awesome dark amarena cherry!

Piña Colada Cocktail 11 Jul 2010
5:43 am

I am not sure about the references.
I believe, that DonQ is nowadays considered as superior. However I doubt, that it was so, when the Pi

Piña Colada Cocktail 30 Aug 2011
4:43 pm

Unfortunately frozen pineapple resembles exactly the taste of canned one. Not sure off other juices [lemon and lime also doesn’t really freeze good], but pineapple is so rich of enzymes, which alters dramatically the texture [what is negligible in juice] and unfortunately the taste.

Orange juice seems to work quite ok - you could use also the already frozen juice concentrates - they are not as good as fresh juice, but the quality degrades much less.

I still have the idea, that a cocktail is only as good as the ingredients, and fresh fruits are nowadays over the year available [and if you don’t want to pay the premium, you can focus on seasonal drinks].

A reasonable cook / chef would never use canned vegetable or frozen produce, which would have an obviously lower quality than the fresh one. There are products, which are different, so you want to have them sometimes preserved/processed [e.g. tomatoes, dried herbs], but this erects out of a conscious decision, not out of the notion of saving money…

Kir Royale 26 Aug 2012
8:58 pm


This is not a Kir Royal. Classically you would name it Champagne Royal.
As Kir is white wine [traditionally bourgogne aligoté] with crème de cassis, latter is indispensable for a correct Kir Royal [and royal is indicating on champagne - so I rather would not use another sparkling wine than real [French!] champagne.
This said, Chambord as well as other good sparkling wines are good substitutes - just make a different drink!

Kir Royale 27 Aug 2012
3:51 am


off course, I know that Chambord is a liqueur - sorry for the little bit confusing comment before. I mean you could substitute the champagne as well as the liqueur - however both variants makes it to something different.

For me, 1 oz - which is metric 3 cl [I am a big supporter for metric measures] is in my eyes far too much. You don’t want to alter completely the champagne [the whole drink would also become too sweet], but just modify it [support the berry facets, which already can be found in champagne].

Hence 1/3 oz = 1 cl is already quite a lot - I even rather would reduce it to 1/6 oz = 0.5 cl = 1 bar spoon. Then the liqueur is very discreet, but the champagne aperitif overall is grown up, complex and delicious.

Cosmopolitan Cocktail 26 Aug 2010
11:48 am

For the cranberry juice [100% juice] you need to be quite carefully - 100% juice doesn’t mean 100% cranberry! Usually it is made on the base of grape or apple juice - as cranberries are just too tart. Real cranberry is a game changer - as the cranberry cocktail is really only a filler [with some coloring] - is really changes the taste dramatically.
Even more important is, to only use a small splash [or less]...

For the juices, I am a fresh fetishist! Nothing is as good as fresh lemon, lime, orange, grapefruit, apple, pineapple - even tomato or cranberry juice in a cocktail.
And most of the time, the fruits keep much longer fresh, than an open can.
But the best way, to keep it fresh is, limit the offered cocktails.

In all cook shows people are talking against frozen and conserved food - so we “cocktail-connoisseurs” supposed to apply this in our own place as well…

Fewer selection of cocktails - but much better quality…