When the pandemic first hit, no one could ever have predicted it would have gone on this long. During the first few months, many were being laid off. Our daughter, Laura, was one of them. I had just posted my first ever video on how to make a breakfast smoothie and she challenged me to a mother/daughter cocktail evening. I loved the idea and the chance to have fun albeit with 5,000 km between us and a three hour time difference. Every Friday night we would come up with our cocktail, video it for Instagram, then critique it. The challenge lasted three weeks as Laura was called back into work. Yay for her but now what do I do? Do I continue? Before the challenge, my cocktail repertoire was limited to vodka tonics and lemon drop martinis.
The history of this cocktail is thought to have originated in Chicago in the 1880s and was called a Continental Sour. It wasn’t until a bartender in NYC started serving it and made it popular. Since the pandemic, I have had over 100 Friday night cocktail videos. Although I sometimes wonder what drink I will share on Instagram each Friday, I have learned so much over the past two years. The weekly videos challenged me to delve deeper into the world of mixing drinks. I no longer view certain spirits with a stand-offish approach. And, I now seek out restaurants where curated cocktails are just as important as the wine list.
For those who love their bourbon, here’s an interesting historical note on the spirit. In the 15th and 16th centuries (according to mash.com), the first settlers in the USA were Irish, Scottish, and Germans. They missed their whiskey and the first rural distilleries were in Pennsylvania and Virginia. Bourbon was named after New Orleans entertainment district, Bourbon Street. Johannes “Jakob” Boehm (emigrated from Germany) in the 1750s. He changed the family name to Beam. Jakob was a farmer and began producing whiskey in the style that became bourbon. His grandson, James Beauregard Beam, managed the family business before and after Prohibition, rebuilding the distillery in 1933 in Kentucky. In 1943 the brand Jim Beam replaced Old Tub.
2 oz bourbon
1 oz lemon juice (freshly squeezed, please)
1 oz simple syrup
1/5 oz red wine
Grab a cocktail shaker or mason jar and fill it with ice. Add all ingredients except the wine and shake vigorously. Strain into a rocks glass with ice. Gently pour the wine over the ice.
the culinary chase’s note:
Shaking vigorously helps create volume and allows the wine to float. Enjoy!