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!

March 25, 2011

#79: Apple Margraita (frozen)

1 cup Ice
1 oz Tequila
1 oz Apple Brandy
2 tblsp Applesauce or puree
1 oz Sour Mix
Combine in a blender, blend until smooth.
If too thick add applesauce or Sour Mix
If too thin add ice
Rim glass with cinnamon and sugar

First thing I discovered when making this drink is that it appears that we have gotten rid of our margarita pitcher and glasses set. Not sure when that happened.I know it was before the big earthquake last year, so that's not why we are missing a vital ingredient to any household. I guess I will have to fill that gap soon, since there are quite a few margarita drinks in the book.

I made do with a classic cocktail glass, as you can see the photo. The cinnamon and sugar on the rim of the glass was great with the apple flavors, as expected. As I worked my way around the glass and down through the slushy mixture, I realized that this could have used twice as much tequila. It was way too weak to be anything other than the equivalent of a watered down margarita at a cheap mexican restaurant. It needed some bite, something to make it resonate. And more tequila will do that.

Overall it was quite tasty, with a pleasant sweetness that wasn't cloying or heavy. Add an extra ounce of tequila, and you've got yourself a winner of a drink.


When I was about 12 or so, my family went to a local park on the 4th of July to watch fireworks. We got there early, set out our blanket and picnic basket, and settled in to celebrate. Of course, we were much too early. My father couldn't stand that we might not have the best spot, which when you think about it makes no sense, sense everyone is looking up. If someone blocked your view, there were bigger problems than where you were sitting.

Since we were so early, my father decided he needed to keep my younger brother and I entertained. We had already started the fidgeting and were probably gearing up for a full, all out war about who would get to sit where on that ratty old Navy blanket we used for picnics. Anyway, my father does not tell short stories or short jokes, which normally is a perfectly good reason for us to practice our eye rolling skills. In this case, it was a valuable skill.

He proceeded to tell a joke that normally would take maybe a minute or so to relate for the average person, and stretched it out into something like a 45 minute saga full of twists and turns, ins and outs, highs and lows. Accents were introduced with each minor character, and as they faded from the story, new ones appeared, and you never knew where this thing was headed. We sat spellbound for the entire time, the story building to a crescendo, the payoff, the punchline we were sure would be the one to end it all.

Finally, after 3/4 of an hour of verbal play and contortions, the punchline hit us. Like a sucker punch, we weren't prepared, and started laughing like there would be no tomorrow. We laughed so hard, I remember rolling down the hillside we were near, holding my stomach, giggling, guffawing, and choking on tears of joy all at the same time. We had never heard anything so funny, so utterly full of humor and the absurdity of life. All the bad emotions that surround us every day had been pushed aside during the telling of the joke, and know they were obliterated, banished to the realm of other worlds, worlds where the unlucky lived, those who would never know this moment, never hear this joke, never hear it told with such perfection, such grace, such panache and timing.

The rest of the evening was a dream, a wonderful night of perfect weather, a perfectly happy little family safe in the protective cocoon of it's own devising, and the most awesome fireworks display I have ever seen, even to this day.

I plan on asking my father, the next time I see him, to tell that joke again, even though I know it won't be the same. I'll be disappointed, I know. You can't be 12 again, you only get a few truly special moments like that in a lifetime. But the main reason I wan't him to tell it again is...

For the life of me I can't remember that damn joke.

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