Every day a different drink. Not just how to make them, but a detailed review of how they actually taste, photos of the drinks, and stories along the way. Starting from the beginning, The Bartender's Black Book will be our guide, taking us
(and our livers) on a journey from which we may never recover. Cheers!
January 29, 2011
#29: Alabama Slammer 4
1/2 oz Triple Sec
1/2 oz Galliano
1/2 oz Sloe Gin
Combine all ingredients in a tall glass filled with ice, fill with orange juice, shake, and garnish with an orange.
Years ago, I had a Kung-Fu Grip GI Joe. He was awesome. He stood a commanding 12" tall, and oozed bad-ass. I don't mean oozed like his nemesis (in my backyard) Stretch Armstrong, he just seemed like he was unstoppable in the little made up world of my summers. Joe could do anything. He was flexible, unbeatable, and with those tough plastic boots and soft rubber hands, he defeated many another action figure foes.
Until he became a POW. Remember, Joe was a GI. That spells Army, and during the 70s, that meant POWs. I may have been too young to really know what Vietnam was all about, but I could certainly hear the news every night. Especially since I didn't have other distractions, like cable, or the internet, or social niceties like friends.
It just seemed reasonable that at some point in his varied and exciting career, an Army guy like Joe would be taken prisoner. Of course, I always knew that Joe was too tough to be held for long, so I wasn't worried that this would be a permanent state of affairs. How Joe was captured wasn't important. That kind of detail to my 10 year old minds seemed irrelevant, and boring. Getting captured was for weaklings. Joe did exciting stuff, like escape! The entire adventure that summer morning revolved around Joe escaping. A daring, mad, fight to the finish, real hero escape from the jungle hell of his backyard captors, the faceless bad guys who surrounded him.
An elaborate plot developed, with Joe breaking free from his primitive holding cell dug in the ground, bursting through the logs (twigs) that created a door to his hell. Of course, getting away from the guards and out of the camp was his priority. Joe used his Kung Fu Grip to grab a log (twig) and knock a guard unconscious. He used his Kung Fu Grip to climb the guard tower (small tree), grab another guard's rifle (toy rifle), and shoot the guard (Stretch Armstrong himself). Joe used his Kung Fu Grip to leap to his salvation, a rope (string) leading out of the camp from the tower (small tree) to a clearing outside, and freedom. Joe used his Kung Fu Grip to grab that rope (string) and start his ascent to liberation and a the celebration of another mission accomplished.
That ended up being Joe's last mission. Its pretty hard for a guy to be all tough ass and kicking butt when he has no fingers. One by one, the string sliced into Joe's soft, rubbery hands. Like a cheese slicer in slow motion, I watched as Joe's digits came off one by one, as he dropped lower and lower to freedom, and a life of VA benefits and the obscurity and darkness that was the bottom of the toy chest. Joe ended up on the ground, clubs for hands, never able to pick up his standard issue rifle again.
Maybe that's why I drink.
Finally, a Slammer version that has something different. The drink looked very nice, having a deeper color, with much more red than orange. This one also had a totally different taste from the previous versions. The orange juice was not the strongest flavor here, and the Southern Comfort came through strong and spicy. The Triple Sec and Sloe Gin added just the right amount of sweetness, and the Galliano provided just a hint more of spice and some sweetness. A very nice combo overall.
Galliano is a sweet and spicy, bright yellow brandy-based Italian liquer. The recipe is still somewhat secret, but contains over 30 herbs, flowers, spices, roots, and berries. The main ingredients are star anise, ginger, citrus, and vanilla. Supposedly the bright yellow color symbolizes the Gold Rushes of the 1890s. It is mainly used as a "marrying" ingredient, as it adds no intrusive flavor in and of itself, but deepens and gives character to the other ingredients in a drink. We'll be seeing more of the Galliano when we get to the Harvey Wallbanger and many of its variations, as it is the key ingredient in those drinks.
Still lounging outside during the summer, but now I have moved over to the swing under the tree in the backyard.
Check out today's featured item.