Tales or Bust!

July is soon upon us and for those in the cocktail and beverage community this means another year of liquidity lavishness and grandeur courtesy of Tales of the Cocktail.  If you may be unfamiliar with Tales, it’s one part knowledge expansion via seminars hosted by industry experts; one part networking with like-minded kindred spirits; and one part all out micro Mardi Gras madness for all things alcohol.  Now, I’ve never had the pleasure of attending this prestigious 5 day long event hosted in New Orleans, but this year presents itself a unique opportunity.  Broker’s gin has put on a cocktail contest with a chance to get an all expense paid ride down to Tales and compete with 12 other mixologists in an all out cocktail brawl in their Broker’s Bowler Cup.

There’s no entry fee and all you must have is a Facebook profile and create a cocktail featuring Broker’s gin, then enter it on their Facebook Bowler Cup page and wait to see if you get a once in a lifetime chance to brush shoulders with such legends as David Wondrich, Jim Meehan and many other bar and enthusiast legends.  Well, no guarantees you will actually meet any of them but chances are high you’re gonna see some mixology greats.

As for the gin and cocktail, Broker’s is a classically styled London Dry gin distilled 4 times from English wheat, then redistilled using traditional botanicals.  I wanted the gin to be the star, and I decided to use ingredients that would work with and not mask the juniper and citrus.  This was also the perfect opportunity to use a homemade shrub made from fresh, local strawberries and rhubarb with a bit of sage for character.  Add a dash bitter orange, aromatized wine and fresh lemon juice and I might just have the recipe to send me to New Orleans.  Now, the recipe here is slightly different from the one I entered, a mistake on my part as I posted my rough draft recipe versus the final one.  Both are great, but I think this one here has the best balance of flavors.  None the less, Click here if you like what you see and vote.  Cheers!

Sage Advice

1 1/2 oz Broker’s Gin

1/2 oz Lillet Blanc

1/2 oz Amaro Nonino

1/2 oz Homemade Strawberry & Sage Shrub

1/2 oz Fresh Lemon Juice

1 oz Rhubarb Soda

2 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters

Fresh Sage Leaf for Garnish

Combine all ingredients but soda water with ice.  Shake hard and add rhubarb soda.  Strain into a chilled cocktail glass, garnish and enjoy.

Strawberry-Rhubarb & Sage Shrub

2 cups Chopped Strawberries

1/2 cup Chopped Rhubarb

1 cup Water

1 cup Superfine Sugar

1/2 cup Champagne Vinegar

15 Fresh Sage Leaves, Torn

Combine ingredients in a sauce pan over medium high heat.  Bring to a boil and stir, then reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.  Remove from heat and allow to completely cool.  Fine strain, bottle and refrigerate for up to 1 month.

Sage Advice

Color:  Reddish orange

Flavor:  Gin botanicals, sweet strawberry, sage, tart vinegar, citrus, herb

Texture:  Easy and mild effervescence

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