The Tasting Panel magazine

May 2015

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84  /  the tasting panel  /  may 2015 Suorting Characte It's easy to think of the non-spirit items in our cocktails as playing second fiddle to the alcohol in the gla, but that mind-frame wi ki your creation faer than you can say "mixer." Think about it: Where would Holmes be with- out Watson or Maverick without Gse? One without the other ju fls wrong—so let's shift the spotlight to some of our favorite new sidekicks. by Emily Coleman #Throwback Thity From a bootlegger with an apothecary shop to a school- teacher who ran moonshine, the tale of Eli Mason depends on who you ask, but his current role is a certain one: bringing consis- tency and efficiency to the craft cocktail movement with mixers inspired by tradition. Made by hand in Nashville, TN, Eli Mason uses premium ingredients like pure cane sugar, fresh mint and organic gum arabic to create its portfolio, which includes its Old Fashioned Cocktail Mixer, Mint Julep Cocktail Mixer, Classic Grenadine, Gomme Syrup, Demerara Syrup and Rich Simple Syrup. With all these clas- sic choices, it's no wonder that it's "Grandpappy approved." Labor of Love Not to be confused with butter- milk, Bittermilk is a line of cocktail mixers crafted "by humans" and bottled by hand in Charleston, SC. Created by Joe and MariElena Raya—who both have a long history with the restaurant and bar industry—their recipes focus on the bittering agent, balancing it with sweetness, acidity and aromatic components. Mixing classic tastes like No. 1: Bourbon Barrel Aged Old Fashioned with more modern options like No. 5: Charred Grapefruit Tonic with Bulls Bay Sea Salt, you will surely be able to find an option to match any palate. Now, off to perfect the recipe for Bittermilk pancakes . . . . Moment of Truth Here comes summer! And here comes the endless hunt to find a refreshing drink to quench the thirst that accompanies the high temperatures. To make the quest easier, The Bitter Truth has released a new addition to their bitters line: Cucumber Bitters—a versatile addition to any cocktail, especially those with a white spirit as the base. Guaranteed to bring the classics like Vodka & Tonics or Mojitos to a whole new level, it comes in a 200-ml. bottle and brings the portfolio count to ten expressions—others in the line include: Old Time Aromatic, Chocolate, Orange, Lemon, Celery and Creole. Trust us, you won't be bitter about adding this item to the bar's spice rack! Pure and Simple Three. It's a magic number to many of us, but it's especially important to Allison Goldberg, the maker of Fruitation Craft Sodas & Cocktail Mixers. Each of its offerings—Rio Red Grapefruit, Tangerine and Cranberry— uses only three ingredients: the main fruit, water and pure sugarcane. Spicing up everything from seltzer water to complicated mixology concoctions, these all- natural ingredients are devoid of preservatives or GMOs, ensuring that the guest is tasting the fruit the way it was meant to be experienced. Now that's magic!

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