Category Archives: Whiskey-Based

Holiday Recipe: Old-School Egg Nog

A holiday recipe?  Nearly two months before the actual holiday?  Surely the Bartender hasn’t sold out to the ever-increasing, ever-bemoaned commercialization of the winter months?  No, dear reader.  Rather, today’s recipe is of the old-fashioned variety, where aging and anticipation both increase its savor.  But first, the origin story!

ImageThe Rebel Spouse, who has been known to hang out in the Something Awful Forum Goon community, came to the Bartender a few years ago with this recipe.  “We have to try this,” he said, in a tone that brooked no argument.  “The goons call it ‘Fuckin’ Nog’, short for ‘The Best Fucking Eggnog You Will Ever Drink’.”

Looking over the recipe, and mentally calculating the calories (not to mention the booze content) involved, your Bartender’s eyes widened.  “If we drank this all ourselves, we’d be spherical.  Possibly dead and spherical.  Certainly dead drunk.  And spherical.”

“Then we’ll have to have a party,” the Spouse decided.  “We know enough people here to have a Christmas party, don’t we?”  Though at the time we’d just moved to Bisbee, the promise of such alcoholic delight proved a potent lure, and the Rebel Christmas Party was a modest success during the years it was held, in large part due to the eggnog.

Incidentally, this recipe may well be the perfect use for Kirkland Signature Bourbon, as the strength of flavor that makes it so overpowering an experience drunk straight serves it well against the incredible richness of the eggs and cream – and it’s inexpensive, to boot.  Even better, Kirkland has seen fit to add a quite tasty and reasonably-priced spiced rum to its line (review forthcoming!), which also serves well.

A note on aging:  Though it goes against the usual instant gratification of drink-mixing, the secret to a truly great nog is aging.  Buy a cheap gallon jug of water from the store, empty the jug, fill it with nog, and stick it in the back of the fridge for a month, checking it now and again and shaking it up if it separates.  The leftovers you can keep handy, and try a little bit each weekend until your party.  You’ll likely be amazed at the improvement in mellowness and depth that the nog takes on each week.  (The Bartender has heard tell of folk making theirs a year ahead of time and keeping it in the garage – and it’s true that the booze quantity is likely sufficient to kill anything that might try to grow in the nog! – but that seems slightly overkill.)

Old-School Egg Nog
Adapted from “The Joy of Cooking”, with help from the Something Awful Forum Goons
serves approximately 20, or one Goon

12 eggs, separated
1 pound confectioner’s sugar
3 cups bourbon
2 cups spiced rum
2 quarts whipping cream
pinch of salt
freshly grated nutmeg

Strain the egg yolks through a sieve and beat until light in color. Gradually add the sugar. While continuing to beat, slowly add 2 cups of the bourbon. Cover the mixture and let stand for 1 hour to dispel the “eggy” taste.

Add the rest of the liquor and the cream, beating well. Cover and refrigerate the mixture for 3 hours.

Beat the egg whites until stiff but not dry. Fold them into the other ingredients. Grate nutmeg to taste into the eggnog and fold it in. Transfer to a jug or pitcher, cover, and let age in the refrigerator for thirty days.

Serve in small cups (the one in the picture is a double-serving), with a sprinkling of fresh nutmeg grated over each pour.

Recipe: Cobbanhattan

Due to technical difficulties, the final installment of Newly Rebellious is being postponed (though hopefully not for long); in the meantime, here’s a recipe for a nifty twist on a classic, courtesy of Cobban, a kooky friend, fabulous karaoke partner and all-around excellent guy.

Cobban (whose talents include video editing, and can be seen hamming it up during a weekend home alone here – give it a watch, he’s hilarious) is very fond of Manhattans – in his words, “That sound of the ice in the shaker?  Just like the cat with the can opener, for me.”  However, like all professional drinkers and their favorite cocktails, he prefers his to be made in a particular fashion, with particular ingredients – in this case, Maker’s Mark bourbon.

Of particular note is the lower vermouth proportion; Maker’s Mark is already fairly sweet, so a traditional 2:1 ratio ends up being almost candy-like – or so the Bartender is told.  Of course, the inclusion of maraschino cherry juice seems a step in the wrong direction, there, but this isn’t her recipe.  (And, in all fairness, the results are really quite tasty.)


3 ounces Maker’s Mark Bourbon
3/4 ounce sweet (red) vermouth
Dash of bitters
Dash of maraschino cherry juice

Put a bit of maraschino cherry juice along with a cherry in the bottom of your cocktail glass.  Shake remaining ingredients with ice and strain into glass.  Optional:  Add an orange slice for extra garnish.

Recipe: Whiskey Sour

Now that we’ve addressed Jim Beam bourbon, it only seems appropriate for the Bartender to document the classic recipe it might as well have been custom-designed for – the Whiskey Sour.

Note that the recipe specifies bourbon whiskey; this is not an arbitrary designation.  The lemon juice helps to tamp down the sweetness and bring the sour notes of the whiskey to the forefront, while the syrup blunts its harshness.  Considering the complete and utter lack of subtlety in any of the base ingredients, the result is surprisingly complex.

The official recipe includes a dash of egg white in the ingredients, but there appears to be some debate as to whether or not it’s an optional inclusion; given that this is a blog dedicated to doing things for oneself rather than following tradition, the Bartender tried it and discovered that the only noticeable difference is cosmetic.  Therefore, the Bartender recommends that the aspiring mixologist weigh the pleasing aesthetics of the white foam at the top against the (admittedly small) possibility of poisoning from the raw egg, and choose accordingly.

Whiskey Sour

1 1/2 oz bourbon whiskey
1 oz lemon juice
1/2 oz simple syrup

Shake and strain over ice in a rocks glass.  Garnish with two maraschino cherries, or a cherry and an orange slice.

Source:  IBA Official Cocktail recipe

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