September 2010
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Day September 21, 2010

MxMo: Vieux Caribeño

This month’s Mixology Monday theme was fun, especially since I’ve been working with rum recipes lately, learning the history, and focusing especially on agricole.  Lime and rum have been paired flavors for centuries, probably since the rum ration under Admiral Vernon (“Old Grog”) included limes and citrus and was found to ward off scurvy.

Early in my cocktailing days, back in college, friends and I drank an unnamed cocktail from Hemingway’s Islands in the Stream, lovingly described as gin, green coconut water, lime, and bitters, served tall in a glass wrapped in wet paper towels to keep it cool in the tropical heat.  The drink was unnamed by Hemingway, and in the late 80’s the resources simply weren’t easy to find to do good historical research.  We added tonic water and simply called it the “Hemingway” and still sip them to this day.

Something like this is made by Mr. Martin Cate down at Smuggler’s Cove, under the name Caribeño, and since I just finished a batch of barrel-aged gin (in a former Tuthilltown rye whiskey barrel), I thought I’d go with the following:

Vieux Caribeño

1.5 oz barrel-aged gin

3 oz young coconut water (fresh is best, some of the asian canned varieties with pulp are fine)

3/4 oz lime juice

1/2 oz cane sugar syrup (for fun, use Lyle’s Golden)

1 dash Angostura

Shake the ingredients and pour over fresh rocks in a collins glass with lime shells.  In the pictured presentation I’ve added a sugar cane stir-stick rolled in powdered lime zest mixed with a small amount of cane sugar.

This works, but my barrel-aged gin is pretty vanilla-forward right now since it’s the first batch through this particular barrel.  The next one I’ll probably cut the straight barrel-aged gin 2:1 with london dry to mellow out the vanillin a bit.  Otherwise tasty!