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!

February 25, 2011

#56: American Sour

Heaping tsp Sugar
Juice of medium Lemon
Muddle/stir in a tall glass, then fill with ice. Add the following:
2 oz Bourbon
Dash of Triple Sec
Dash of Orange Juice
Shake, and garnish with orange and cherry

This seems like a drink a real man would order. A tough guy. A hard-boiled American. Someone with the independent, can-do spirit; a me-against-the-world type of roughneck who doesn't take no for answer. From men or women. A guy who would just as soon pop you in the snout as take any lip from the likes of you, my friend. No sirree, this kind of guy is going to sidle up to that bar and order a real American drink, something with a brown liquor, that's for sure.

What's that, a little bit of sugar at the bottom? Seriously? And really, barkeep, can we just skip the garnish? That's bringing the whole thing down. Cut! Cut! We'll have to do this scene from the top…

Muddling means to mash, or mix. A muddler is a a handle with a flat end used to mash, pinch, mix ingredients. They can be made from wood, plastic, or metal. Basically there are 3 ways to do this.

Muddle Hard: pulverize into a paste or into juice
Muddle/Pinch: muddle lightly with herbs
Muddle/Stir or Muddle/Mix: quickly stir starter ingredients before introduction of the rest of ingredients

This was not my favorite drink. It was a touch on the bitter side. One thing I did notice right away, and you may also when you compare my photo of the finished drink to the recipe, is that there was no way this could be made in a tall glass. Typically I think of a tall glass as a traditional Collins glass, and that is what I have been using for the tall glass drinks. But there's just not enough liquid in the recipe to justify the use of a tall glass. All of the liquid added together barely filled a standard low tumbler. Oh well, the Good Book is open ended, allowing you to use the glasses you want and the brands of liquor you want. Make this in a tall glass if that's what you like.

I felt that this needed a bit more sugar, as it does live up to its name: Sour. And all of the fruit flavors do not completely cover the taste of Bourbon, so if you don't like that, move along to something else. Seriously. Nothing to see hear if the brown liquors don't work for you.

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  1. Now this is starting to get more into my territory! Just replace the sugar, lemon, triple sec, orange juice, and the garnish with a splash of ginger beer and a dash of bitters. Mmmmm.

  2. And then we'll call it the "Jon"!