Cocktail Garnishes From Functional to Fabulous!

July 19th, 2008 by Colonel Tiki

This morning has been wonderful. Trader Tiki, Kaiser Penguin and I ‘tended at Jeff Berry‘s “Potions of the Caribbean.” I helped Martin Cate unpack teeny tiny ice cones, and I’ve batched drinks for Jeff Berry. I’m pooped, but I’ll here is the live blogging Martin Cate’s “Cocktail Garnishes: From Functional to Fabulous”

2:24 — Martin and Jeff Berry are setting up and getting things in order. Martin has just carved through a pineapple and is now prepping lemons.

2:27 — Rick “Kaiser Penguin” Stutz: “Martin has angry knives.”

2:31 — Martin starts with The Kids in the Hall’s “Girl Drink Drunk” to introduce the garnish. He brings up the old canard of the revolutionary bar maid placing a rooster feather in a drink and naming it a “cocktail.” Nonsense, yes — but the drink was originally a garnish.

2:45 — Martin introduces the “Sidewinder’s Fang” as an example of a horses neck. This is a peel of citrus that is placed into the drink and winds its way close to the edge, just peeking out of the top. In this instance, it is an orange peel giving the appearance of a snake winding about the drink. These garnishes are meant to serve as conversation pieces. These are garnishes for excitement and discussion.

Sidewinder’s Fang
1oz El Dorado 5 Yr. Demerara Rum
1½ oz Fresh lime juice
1½ oz Fresh orange juice
3 oz Fever-Tree Soda Water
1½ oz Passion fruit syrup

2:47 — Harry Yee of Henry Kaiser‘s Hawaiian Village Hotel: “I was the first person to use orchids – you know why? we used to use cane sticks. People used to chew on them and put them in the ashtray and they used to get the ashtray all sticky. I did it just to make cleaning up easier.”

2:54 — The ice cones come out. Martin displays the ingenious method of ice carving with a Snoopy Snow Cone machine. We are served Navy Grogs with miniature ice cones.

Navy Grog
1 oz Cruzan Estate Light Rum
1 oz Old New Orleans Amber Rum
1 oz El Dorado Demerara 5 yr old
1 oz Fever-Tree Preium Spring Club Soda
¾ oz Fresh lime juice
¾ oz Fresh grapefruit juice
1½ oz Honey Syrup

2:56 — Jeff Berry comes to the podium. He is demonstrating the ice cone technique. The ice needs to be small and snowy. First a waring professional ice machine crushes they ice. Next Jeff puts the ice into a cuisinart to reduce the ice to tiny little pieces. This is packed into a pilsner glass with a chopstick to make room for the straw. Freeze this for a minimum of four hours before use.

3:05 — Next ice garnish: place a cut lime flat side dowin into a cocktail shaker and pack with ice. Freeze for four hours, invert and remove the shell. Place a carved shell in the hole, fill with 151 rum and place in a bowl drink. Light on fire for a wonderful contrast of fire and ice.

3:11 — Jeff Berry: “If the drink tells a story, keep the garnish linked to it” For example, Donn Beach’s “Three dots and a dash (…-, V). Morse code for V and code for victory during world war II, the garnish consists of 3 maraschino cherries and an extended pineapple piece.

3:27 — Fresh Mint. Martin is back. Mint’s main enemy is oxygen. Heat does not cause wilting: exposure to air does. Always remember to slap the mint to release the oil before placing in the drink.

3:34 — The Peelers showed up and we each experimented making a horse’s neck. I don’t want to brag, but mine was the biggest.

3:36 — Oregon Natural Maraschino Cherries: no sulfides, no f,d&c red. Red color is due to beet juice.

3:45 — Pure lemon extract soaked croutons produce a marvelous flame. I’ve just seen a slide of the most fabulously garnished Bloody Mary. Garnishes included bacon and crab legs.

3:50 — This just in: Morgenthaler slipped in at the end to note Martin mentioning him. Slipped back out. He must be headed back to the pool.

p.s. the last drink:

For Pete’s Sake
1 ½ oz Barsol Pisco
½ oz Cherry Heering
½ oz Hibiscus Syrup
1 Dash Fee Brothers Aromatic Bitters
¾ oz Fresh lime juice
½ oz Partida Agave Nectar

One Response to “Cocktail Garnishes From Functional to Fabulous!”

  1. Tiare says:

    This is one of the many seminars i really would have wanted to attend to if had i been able to make it to the Tales. Would have loved to see the ice cone techiques, your post now opens up for some more ice molding experiments…

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