The Tasting Panel magazine

March 2017

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80  /  the tasting panel  /  march 2017 BOURBON An Old Kentucky Y ou don't need to have a loved one in Louisville or a long-time friend in Lexington to experience a Kentucky hug. All you need is a little bourbon, and its iconic warm embrace is made even tighter when it comes within the context of a relaxed, cozy Sunday brunch. To bring this much needed hug to Southern California on a rainy day, we headed to San Diego, where a group of the quirky, hard-working souls from the city's bartending scene came together for an afternoon of comfy camaraderie. There was no agenda to push, no new product to roll out. The taxidermied lion observing the action from the bar's suspended glass case squashed any chance of pretense. The only thing really emphasized was bourbon's stately squeeze applied to the industry's chosen family. According to event host and Beam Suntory West Coast Whiskey Ambassador Megan Breier, the afternoon's spirit of choice was a natural decision. "I'm originally from Kentucky," she explains. "Bourbon was Megan Breier, West Coast Whiskey Ambassador for Beam Suntory. Course 1: Cinnamon Toast Punch "This drink creates a unique spin on balance. The Booker's is going to stand up to the sweet tones of the cereal, while the presence of the milk will smooth out the spirits' own amped up sweetness." —Megan Breier ◗ 2 oz. Booker's Bourbon ◗ 4 oz. Cinnamon Toast Crunch–infused whole milk ◗ ½ oz. Demerara syrup Whip ingredients and garnish with grated cinnamon. Food Pairing: Apple salad with candied walnuts, frisée, mint, feta and bacon lardons. Grand Dad's Breakfast "Old Grand-Dad was a family favorite, so it naturally brings a comforting quality for me. From a cocktail perspective, its nuttiness plays off perfectly with the rosemary maple syrup and its unique herbaceous quality." —M. B. ◗ 2 oz. Old Grand-Dad Bonded Bourbon ◗ ¾ oz. rosemary infused maple syrup ◗ ¾ oz. lemon ◗ ½ oz. egg white ◗ 3 drops Scarborough Bitters ◗ Pinch salt Shake and empty into a rocks glass. Top with three drops of Scarborough Bitters. Food Pairing: Skirt steak tamale with pepper jack cheese, salsa verde, avocado and cilantro. Course 2: BOURBON

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