Thursday, August 29, 2013

Cocktail Thought of the Day-- National Cabernet Day

Thursday August 29th is National Cabernet day. So for all my wine lovers out there, I have a very special post. While Mr. Mixx is predominately a spirits guy, I do appreciate Wine and what it brings to the spirit world. It is a very complex study and while I have some wine knowledge, for this post I brought in my very special friend Tanisha "Girl Meets Glass" Townsend,

Tanisha, along with being a good friend of mine, and a Chicago native, is a Washington, DC based wine & spirits educator. She also has a excellent wine blog, aptly named., Girl Meets Glass. Her goals are to make spirits and wine education available to all, from the in home novice, tot he most trained accomplished spirits professionals. Tanisha has quite a few wine education credentials, and you can check her out at

So since today is National Cabernet day, I could think of no one more essential than her to drop a few jewels on us all about Cab.. Here are her thoughts on Cab and a few things you may not have known.. Enjoy....

Cocktail Thought Of the Day
What is Cabernet?

I took a Cab to the Left….
Is the line I used to remember the difference between Left Bank and Right Bank wines of Bordeaux, France.  Cabernet Sauvignon is the predominant grape in the blends from the Left Bank. I passed that particular exam years ago, but when I think about Cabernet Sauvignon, I always think back to that simple sentence.

The Left Bank gets its name due to the fact that they vineyards lie on the lefts side of the Gironde, an estuary that runs through Bordeaux. Haut-Medoc and Medoc are the main sub-regions of the left bank. These regions produce Cabernets with high levels of astringency and tannins, but the addition of Merlot and Cabernet Franc lends some complexity and softness. Left Bank Bordeaux will age 5-10 years before showing any signs of mellowing out. And will then keep for years after that with new layers and flavors deepening in the bottle.
Also note that the most expensive wines of Bordeaux come from the Medoc region, mainly as a result of the 1855 Classification. This classification divided the 61 chateaus into First Growth, Second Growth, Third Growth, Fourth Growth, and Fifth Growth. A recent search for a First Growth Bordeaux Chateau Latour found the lowest price at $1500 for a 2008!

But don’t fret my friends, all Bordeaux are not that expensive! There are some much more affordable examples with just as much texture and tannins, and not nearly as much price tag.

Chateau Saint Sulpice
Earthy and oaky on the nose moving into dark berries on the palate. May be a bit tight upon opening, swirl this one in your glass a bit as to not miss out. Pairs well with meat and pasta dishes.
Chateau La Cardonne
A bit dusty at first, but the ripe berry fruit is there mid-palate. Then comes the tobacco and acidity bringing up the rear. Enjoy this with steak.
Barons de Lafite Rothschild Reserve Speciale
Deep ruby red in color with smoky, toasty and spicy notes on the nose. Give this one a good swirl in the glass to reveal the blackberry and blackcurrant aromas. The soft, velvety tannins and chocolate hit you right at the finish.

I know this gave me some new insight into the world of Cabernet. It's much more complex than I initally thought and Im glad to have a friend like Tanisha who can break down to me and help me to expand my knowledge into the wine world. For those of you who want to know more about Tanisha and wine here is where you can find her ---

Twitter- @GirlMeetsGlass

She is #MrMixologistApproved and look forward to hearing from her on my blog again...


Until Next Time

Monday, August 26, 2013

Mixing it up Monday's --- introducing the Sorel Iced Tea

I'm bringing back Mixing it up Mondays on my blog, because well, I want to.. Lol But seriously, most( if not all) weekends I am about town and mixing up cocktails at Various events. This weekend was no different but with a twist. With my new position at Sorel, I was about to get the product out to the masses at 2 separate occasions. Both events were a hit and the cocktail I created was literally sucked down by everyone in attendance, even someone who doesn't partake in spirits loved the product and the cocktail.

What is Sorel you may be asking? Sorel is a magnificent blend of Brazilian Clove,  Indonesian Cassia, Nigerian ginger, Indonesian nutmeg, and Moroccan Hibiscus. All of those exciting botanical s, Pure Cane sugar and Grain alcohol make honestly an AMAZING liqueur. This can be sipped by itself, or used as one hell of a modifier to re create many of the classic cocktails. Think spice, think islands, think GREAT TASTE.. So that brings us to today's cocktail. The Sorel Iced Tea. I was bartending an event held out on a patio yesterday. Smooth music, older crowd, laid back environment, so I thought refreshing, summertime cocktail. A blend of Bitters to accentuate the spice in the clove, and ginger, a little tea to give it a soft feel, and some fresh citrus to tickle your palette.. So here it is.....

Sorel Iced Tea

Earl Grey Tea
Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice
Ginger Syrup
Angostura Bitters

Combine all ingredients in a shaker tin. shake hard and strain into a chilled cocktail glass

1 word.... Delicious!!! Perfect sipper for a warm summer day! Be on the Lookout for many many more Sorel cocktails in the near future...

Until Next Time

Friday, August 16, 2013

Cocktail Thought of the Day-- National Rum Day

I pity them greatly, but I must be mum, for how could we do without Sugar and Rum"- William Cowper, English Poet 

Its Friday, Its Payday, and its NATIONAL RUM DAY!!! What a great day this is. Rum is one of my favorite spirits to drink, and also to mix with. So today's blog post is going to kill 2 birds with one stone. I am going to give you the cocktail thought of the day, with some cool Rum facts, AND leave you with a couple of my own Rum cocktails for your pleasure and to try at home.

Cocktail Thought of the Day
What is Rum?

Rum is a distilled spirit that is made from Sugar Cane byproducts, such as molasses or directly from sugarcane juice by a process of fermentation and distillation. Light Rums are commonly used in cocktails, where as "golden" or "dark" rums are generally consumed individually( i.e. "neat") or in some cases used in cooking, and now with the classic cocktail coming back and being popular, now are being used more in cocktails. Ultra Premium Rums are also available and used more so for sipping. Where Rum is made has 1 major thing in common, ITS HOT!!! Every major Island group boasts its own Rum. From Barbados, Dominican Republic, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Martinique, Puerto Rico, and Trinidad to name a few. Brazil boasts another type of light rum called Cachaca. But we will cover Cachaca real soon in another post.

So now that leads me to my favorite part of my posts, its sharing with you some of my cocktails. Now don't get me wrong there is a myriad of rums that i enjoy, including Chairman's Reserve, Zacapa, Shellback, Bacardi, but I do have a favorite and its from the Serralles USA portfolio and Its Don Q. Don Q RUm is a Puerto Rican rum and is the #1 selling Rum in Puerto Rico. If you've been to or booked me for events, you know this is usually my go to rum of choice for cocktails, punch, etc.. So the 1st cocktail i give you for National Rum day has Don Q Cristal as the base....

1.5oz Don Q Cristal
1oz Triple Sec(Cointreau preferred)
.50z Lemon Juice
.50oz Pineapple Juice
.25oz Strawberry Puree
Garnish with a Strawberry Slice

My next cocktail is one that I was asked to do for Koloa Rum company. They are a company based out of Hawaii that produces an award winning single batch rum at their distillery near Kalaheo. I was asked to come up with something a little different from your  go to cocktails like a Daiquiri or a Dark and Stormy. So this is what I give you all,...

The Apple Fritter
1.5oz Koloa White Rum
1oz Lairds AppleJack
.50oz Spiced Simple Syrup
.50oz Fresh lime juice
2 dashes homemade Apple Bitters
Garnish with an apple slice or Cinnamon Stick

I hope you ALL enjoy National Rum Day today! I know I will.


Mr Mixologist

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Great News!!!

As I woke up this morning I got some great news! I will be the brand ambassador/mixologist for Sorel liqueur here in the Chicagoland area. Sorel is a handcrafted liqueur comprised of Moroccan Hibiscus,
Brazilian clove, Nigerian Ginger, Indonesian cassia, Indonesian Nutmeg, and 100% organic grain alcohol. Sorel scored a very high rating at the Ultimate Spirits Challenge 2013. To me personally, it can be just as much of a " Must Have" liqueur as St. Germain. Be on the lookout for me hosting tastings, events, education, and a lot of recipes.. The fall recipes are already starting to come to me now.


Until next time 
Mr Mixologist

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Cocktail Thought for the Day 8-8-2013

In this last year I had the opportunity to head up a new program with Courvoisier USA as one of 8 Courvoisier "Courvoisiologists" from across the nation. We we in charge of executing events, new cocktails for the brand, and education. It was a great opportunity for me to expand my knowledge of the iconic brand and share it with many others. It all culminated with the Courvoisier lab event here in Chicago on June 5th. Cocktails, cocktails, and more cocktails. I was the featured mixologist and had 6 of my own created cocktails being featured at the event. But with that came the responsibility to really dig deep into the brand and learn about who I was representing. So with that the cocktail thought of the day today is all about Courvoisier Cognac. Anyone who knows me knows, I enjoy a finely distilled grape spirit, namely Cognac. Its a beautiful spirit and very very unique in its taste. So here is a little history about this iconic brand...

Cocktail Thought of the Day
Background and Present day Facts about Courvoisier

The origin of Courvoisier goes all the way back to the 19th with Emmanuel Courvoisier and his associate Louis Gallois running a wine and spirit company. In 1811 Napoleon Bonaparte visited their warehouse in Bercy. The rumor is that Napoleon took several barrels of Cognac with him to St. Helena, which in turn, the ships officers began naming it, "The Cognac Of Napoleon." Courvoisier was also served at the 1889 opening of the Eiffel Tower. As far as the aging process of this fine cognac, the Vs is aged up to 8 years with the majority of it being Fins Bois grapes, the VSOP is aged up to 10 years with a little of 50% of it being Grande Champagne Grapes, and the XO Imperial being a blend of up to 40 different Cognacs. 

So now to present day. Not only does Courvoisier have just Cognac but they introduced a New Blend of Cognac and 2 liqueurs to add to the portfolio. C by Courvoisier, Courvoiser Rose', and Courvosier Gold. 
C by Courvoisier is a small batch Cognac blend selected from 50 different Wine Growers and is double barreled for a completely different type of experience. Rose' is a blend of Courvoisier and Premium red wine grapes, and Gold is truly a one of a kind blend of Courvoisier and Moscato grapes. So for the 1st time in a long time I'll leave this blog post with some of my own recipes with each expression for all of you. Feel free to try these at home, as I took a BYOB( Be your own Bartender) approach to make quality cocktails but also ones easy enough for the at home bartender.. 

The Spoken Word
C By Courvoisier
Tripe Sec
Maraschino Liqueur
Lemon juice
Angostura Bitters
Top with Club Soda
Lemon Peel Garnish

A Rose Grew from Concrete
Courvoisier Rose
Lemon Juice
Lime Juice
Blackberry Liqueur
Angostura Bitters
Top with Ginger Beer

The Golden Sangria
Couvoisier Gold
Courvoisier VS
Moscato Wine
Blood Orange Juice
White Peaches

Hopefully you enjoy the cocktails, and let me know if you try them by tweeting me at @MrMixologist with the hash tag #DrinkOneTeachOne

Until Next Time

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Cocktail Thought of the Day 8-7-2013

On my Instagram pages I started this little thing called the cocktail thought of the day. It was a fun way for me to communicate with everyone and also give out some information about cocktails that alot of the consumers on my side of town might not have been aware of. So on a bigger scale, why not share it with my blog friends and get even more of a way to get out and help educate the general consumer that isn't in the spirit world, but still enjoys cocktails and the cocktail world. So each day I'll pose a random thought and give some insight on it. Since my mantra is Drink One Teach One why not share things with the masses.

So here we go.....

Cocktail thought of the day--
What are Cocktail Bitters?

Bitters are a variety of herbs, fruits, spices, and roots distilled in a base spirit. Bitters were a staple in the early cocktail days, and have seen a resurgence since classic cocktails have made a resurgence in the last few years. Bitters can also be used in cooking, and once upon a time, Orange bitters were favored over aromatics. Some of my favorite brands of bitters are Angostura(Iconic brand), Peychaud's, Fee Brothers, Bittermans & Bitter Truth, and of course my good friend Gary Reagan's Orange Bitters No. 6. But my absolute new favorite thing to play around with in Cocktails is Dale DeGroff's Pimento Bitters. First of all anything made by " King Cocktail" is always worth a try. But his Pimento Bitters are handcrafted by the man himself and are a blend of Allspice berries., anise, and several other herbs. These bitters enhance the taste but they dont change it so much that all you are tasting is the bitters. I put 2 dashes of these in a Daiquiri at an event a couple weeks ago, and needless to say it was a HIT!!! I suggest all bartenders try the out and give it a try as well!! So hopefully for those who didn't know about bitters, this gave you an introduction to them! Stay tuned for many more cocktail thoughts of the day each day!


Until next time
Mr Mixologist

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Shaken or Stirred

" I like my Martini shaken not stirred"- Sean Connery as James Bond in Goldfinger

Happy Saturday Afternoon everyone! 

So this topic has came up because of something I posted on my business Instagram page ( IG- DomBarService). I tell this story that I was at a 5 star hotel in downtown Chicago for a wedding reception. While waiting, myself and a couple friends went to the hotel bar for cocktails. I proceeded to ask the bartender for an Aviation. She responded we don't carry those. So now you can just tell the look on my face at this but I digress. So, I asked for a Negroni( one of my favorite cocktails).  So since they " had those" lol I watched the bartender prepare it. And right at the end of the drink SHE SHOOK IT!!! Imagine my horror as I watched that beautiful blend of Plymouth, Campari, and Antica shaken agitated, full of air bubbles, cloudy and just not very appealing when it went into my glass.. Needless to say, I ordered a beer and sent the cocktail back. 

Which brings me to today's post. Some bartenders don't know when to shake and when to stir. Myself I generally follow this rule, when the cocktail is all spirit( base spirit and modifiers) I ONLY stir. When I have a cocktail that requires any type of citrus or juice, eggs, or cream, I shake. Cocktail example to stir would be a Negroni, Manhattan, Rob Roy. Some cocktails you would shake could be margaritas, daiquiris, and long islands. (Yes a well made, shaken Long Island can be a very tasty cocktail. But that's for another post on another day).

With a stirred cocktail you don't want any air bubbles or ice chips in the cocktail, and shaking it agitates it waaaay to much for my taste. So generally when making cocktails and creating new ones I follow these simple rules to making them tasty. So why did James Bond want his martini shaken and not stirred?? We may never know.. But what we do know is that following these simple cocktail rules will produce some very tasty cocktails every time. 

Until Next Time

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Back to Blogging/Drink One Teach One

Hey everyone!

Its been a long time but Mr Mixologist has finally got the blogging bug back in his system. I have been a part of soooo many great events this year, and have so many coming up that I want to share them with all my Twitter/Facebook/Instagram followers. But before I get going I first want to say THANK YOU, to all who have supported me and DrinkxXx On Me bartending Service over the last few years, We started off doing house parties and now have grown to working for various spirit brands and hosting and bartending some of the biggest events here in Chicago.Now for those of you who have been a subscriber to this blog, thank you and now you're in for a treat because we will have postings on everything from Spirit reviews, to some of my favorite bar/restaurants, How to cocktail videos, and the ever infamous "Cocktail Thought of the Day".

So now that brings me to the point of this post today.. my ever famous catchphrase "Drink One Teach One". many have asked me where this came from and why do I always say it and use the hash tag on twitter( #DrinkOneTeachOne) Well here is your answer....

This phrase is the gist of my entire career. Unfortunately, in my community the overall "cocktail" scene is lacking. So when I''m working, or creating menus for clients I try to bring a little more cocktail awareness to the forefront. I love alcohol, I love all the different spirits that are out there(for the most part) and I love learning while I'm enjoying cocktails. Learning about the origin of a cocktail, or breaking down the flavors in the base spirit, or just figuring out all the ingredients in a cocktail while tasting blindly are some very enjoyable things to "Drink One Teach One". Understand spirits and know what you are putting inside your body. Its called "Edutainment" learn something and have fun all at the same time.

Now that im back in the blogging world, I look forward to sharing with you all my experiences, tastings, evenings out, events, recipes, and just views on different trends in the cocktail world. If you have anything you would like to see in this blog that you haven't yet or don't, by all means email me at info@dombartending,.com or tweet me @MrMixologist or @DomBarService and use the hash tag #DrinkOneTeachOne

Until Next Time
Mr. Mixologist