Monday, February 12, 2007

MMXII::Bergeron Cocktail (Rye-Tai)

Mixology Monday is back, this time with the theme "whisk(e)y." Everyone is sending in their posts now and I'll be writing the recap over the next day or so. Check back here for the full listing of posts. On to the Bergeron Cocktail.

The original recipe Mai Tai is one of my favorite cocktails. Made well, the depth of flavors and complexity can be unequaled. "Trader Vic" Bergeron's original recipe calls for Wray & Nephew 17-year-old rum. This element is nearly unobtainium. A few prized bottles were recently released in the UK, but other than those few bottles, it is hard to find. I wanted to explore some alternatives.

I thought that using rye whiskey might make an interesting variant. The relative lack of interest in rye over the past 20 years has had an interesting effect on the market. A lot of rye sat in the warehouses, for a long time. Now there are a lot of interesting, aged rye whiskies available. And they can be really nice. I like the 18-year-old Sazerac Rye, and I thought it would be an excellent candidate for my Rye Tai cocktail.

Here's my recipe:

Bergeron Cocktail
1.5 oz Sazerac 18 yr rye whiskey
1 oz Bacardi light rum
1 oz orange curacao
.5 oz lime juice
.25 oz orgeat syrup

Shake with ice and strain over crushed ice into a chimney. Garnish with a generous sprig of mint and a sprinkle of powdered sugar.

The availability of so many interesting rye whiskies has turned rye into one of the next "hot categories." People are starting to ask about rye, but aren't always sure what to order. Right now, I'm using rye whiskey The Sazerac, The Old-Fashioned, and Manhattans, but for an interesting variant on a classic, try my Bergeron Cocktail recipe.

(As a side note, one of the benefits of being the host, is you get to see everyone's write-ups as soon as they are done. As I was working on my post, I got a note from another participant. It seems that the idea for a rye-mai-tai wasn't as unique as I thought, we've got another one. Come back for the wrap up and check out the other rye-tai recipe, as well as all the other great Mixology Monday posts.)

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