since November 2011


When Good Recipes Go Bad – The Old Fashioned Cocktail 28 Nov 2015
1:28 pm

For some reason, the videos are no longer showing when I click on them; for example, for the old fashioned.  Would you run me through the procedure?  Was a technical change made in the last year?

Old Fashioned Cocktail 1 Nov 2011
3:17 pm

OK Robert, time to do a little edit work.  The Drink Boy OF recipe calls for 1 tsp of simple syrup.  The Small Screen recipe calls for 1/2 oz simple syrup.  If using simple syrup mixed 2 sugar : 1 water as you state is a comment on this page, this means you are either using 2/3 tsp of sugar or 1-1/2 tsp sugar.  Neither amount is the 1 tsp sugar found in a sugar cube.  How about telling viewers via the written recipes what proportion the simple syrup is, and straightening out the difference between the amounts of ss in the recipes on the two sites? 

As to your SSN presentations - nice work!  I’ve been looking for a “regular” cocktail alternative to the margarita’s and authentic mai tai’s I enjoy.  The OF is looking like a real contender.  Will be mixing one up here shortly before dinner.  I’ve taken to muddling the zest with the bitters and just enough of the ss to pick up the oils extracted from the zest.  I’m using 1:1 simple syrup and just not stirring quite as much as one might if slightly less liquid were used in a 2:1 ss.  Am using Jim Beam but may try with bourbon some time soon. 

I was a little skeptical about the amount of flavor imparted by a bit of muddled zest, but, wow, the first time I made the drink I tasted the muddled zest, ss and bitters mixture before finishing the drink and the taste just stayed on my tongue all evening.  Very pleasant, very amazing.

Old Fashioned Cocktail 1 Nov 2011
10:01 pm

Realized I got my math wrong after sending the above comment.  1/2 oz of 2 sugar : 1 water simple syrup would contain 2 tsp sugar, not 1-1/2 as I said.  Since this is double the standard amount of sugar in a cube, when you say 2:1 simple syrup, you must mean 2 parts water to 1 part sugar.  A 1/2 oz of that would contain 1 tsp of sugar.

Is there a bartending convention when someone describes a simple syrup formulation as x parts this to y parts of that, that the first ingredient is always the water (or sugar)?  By the way the Old Fashioned made tonight was great! Thanks again for the detailed information.

Old Fashioned Cocktail 2 Nov 2011
1:27 pm

Thanks for the clarification and edit job Robert.

I think it will be helpful to your readers if you were to make the simple syrup information available on the Drink Boy simple syrup web page.  Right now, if you use the link to get to it from the Old Fashioned recipe, and others that use simple syrup, you just get a list of the drinks.  How about adding some helpful guidance like “Unless otherwise noted, the simple syrup used in my drinks is made by dissolving 1 part sugar with 1 part water.”  Most website users won’t stumble on the little conversation we’ve just had, but I’m sure they’d want to know what formulation you are using in your recipes.

Thank you, Blair, for the measurement equivalents - they are going in to my cocktail mixing notes and will, I know,  be used often.

Robert,  I think the Drink Boy site would be enhanced by a “Measurements” page with a link in the menu toolbar.  Blair’s measurements could simply be pasted onto a measurements webpage.  It’d strengthen the reference value of the website “measurably”.  Just knowing exactly how much a dash is volumetrically is going to make it easy to tinker with the OF recipe to get it exactly how I like it.

Though I gotta say it is darn close already.  Thanks again for demystifying the OF.  What a great cocktail when made right!

Old Fashioned Cocktail 4 Nov 2011
2:00 pm

Great info on the simple syrup, Robert.  Just one more comment and I’ll be out of your hair.  My take of the OF from a bit of internet research is that the “old” method incorporated the use of one sugar cube.  And a sugar cube contains 1 tsp sugar right?  So the 1 tsp of 1:1 simple syrup you use in your recipe would contain 1/2 tsp sugar, or half of a sugar cube.  And I think most OF recipes call for 2 dashes bitters.  So your recipe keeps to the conventional ratio of sugar to bitters, but you are reducing the amount of each by half it seems.  Is this departure from the “norm” meant to bring the whiskey to the forefront?  At this point this is just curiosity.  I’ve learned what I like in an OF, and you’ve freed up my thinking on adjusting recipes to suit one’s taste.  Always good though, to have a good recipe to start the adjustment process with.  Thanks for getting me to that point.

Old Fashioned Cocktail 5 Nov 2011
1:21 pm

Wow, what an amazing article.  Yep, get the picture.  Thanks for all the info.  I’ve gotten into the habit of making my “before dinner” OF in the afternoon (no ice or cherry) and letting it chill ‘til when I want to drink it.  Drop in the cherry, add ice and swirl.  Heaven!  I’ve never been much of whiskey drinker but this cocktail has converted me.

Old Fashioned Cocktail 15 Jun 2012
2:37 pm

Regarding the orange zest: I’ve found for me the best way to extract the oil is by starting the drink by putting the zest (wide piece cut with vegetable peeler) in the glass, adding the bitters and just a few drops of simple syrup, then muddling vigorously.  The oil is released and combines with the liquid.  Then I finish with the rest of the syrup, the whiskey, the cherry and small ice cubes (“RV ice cube trays), and stir with the muddler which remained in the glass after muddling.  I think you get more oil released this way then twisting over the glass.