It's time for Mixology Monday once again and this time we're en fuego. The theme for this month is fire, thought up and hosted by the Muse of Doom herself.
There is a story involved with my drink this month, more so than normal. In addition to boozy subjects I also have been known to photograph sailboats of various sizes. It is for that reason that I found myself getting up at 6 AM to drive to Cleveland on a Saturday in July. I had secured myself a place on a yacht for the Leukemia Cup races (you can see those photos here). However I am an efficient man with a nose for rum. Rumors of a Cleveland distillery making rum on the shores of Lake Erie had reached me and I wanted to look into it for myself. I found Portside Distillery and looked through their porfolio of spirits. Rums like Maple Vanilla and Hop infused rums served to inspire my creative drink juices, but I also wanted to be sure that the drinks had a definite Cleveland theme to them as well.
One of the Portside Rums is a spiced rum, and I have been playing around with spiced rums a bit myself by substituting it for gin in classic drinks. My thinking there is that the basic idea behind spiced rum and gin is reasonably similar. With that in mind I came up with a Cuyahoga Fizz inspired by the Cuyahoga River that runs through Cleveland into Lake Erie.
1.5 oz spiced rum
1 oz lime juice
1 egg white
.5 oz demerara syrup
1 oz cream
2 oz soda
Combine all ingredients save the soda in a shaker with ice and shake until you can't feel your hand anymore. strain into a tall glass and then top with soda water. The claim to fame of the Cuyahoga river is that it has a tendency to catch on fire. Yes, the river has caught on fire no less than 13 times. With that history of inflammation it hardly seems right to leave the top of the drink a pristine white meringue. instead sprinkle on a little brown sugar and 2 dashes of Angostura bitters, then get out your torch and brule that sucker. Not only does the brown sugar caramelize and form a crispy crust (like on a creme brule) but the generous application of heat to the bitters brings out a fruity quality that I had never noticed before.
Hey! Still reading? Good. There's a reason why the old blog has been a little slow this year. I've been part of the committee putting together Pittsburgh Cocktail Week (and on Facebook). If you are available to to check it out it looks to be a good time.