Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Drink Five - Jack Rose

Our fifth cocktail is the Jack Rose.  Never heard of it before starting this blog. 

My lack of knowledge about drinks never ceases to amaze me - this, despite a solid four years spent in the frat house (Keystone Light, Natural Light and Natty Death...err...I mean, Natural Light Ice were the drinks of choice).

So what is this thing?  I'll give you three choices from which to it:

a) A whiskey based drink that contains Rose's lime juice as one of the additional ingredients.

b) A vodka based drink that is noticeably red in color due to the grenadine that is also in the drink.

c) A drink whose main traditional component is Applejack, an alcohol made from hard cider.

Have you picked your answer?

It's C. 

Applejack?  Never heard of it either, eh? 

Apparently, no one makes applejack anymore.  Not only that, I'm not sure anyone is making the Jack Rose anymore!  The Ultimate Bar Book - a book that has 1,000 drink recipes - A THOUSAND!!! - doesn't have a Jack Rose cocktail recipe. 

Thankfully, American Bar does have a Jack Rose recipe.  In it, they use something called calvados.  So, I've never even heard of this crap, and I definitely do not have it on hand.  Apparently, after some trusty internet research (the best kind), it appears to be apple brandy.

Already, I'm thinking to myself There's a reason this drink went out of fashion - it had calvados in it for Christ's sake!.  I had to run to the liquor store.  No big deal, except I had no way of knowing if they'd carry this calvados stuff.

And, I'm dressed like a schlub. 

I'm wearing a hoodie with a cardinal bird's face made to look like the ubiquitous Che Guevara face that adorns t-shirts in every Spencer's Gifts location (don't ask about this hoodie's origin...if you know, you know).  Not only do I look under 21 years of age, but I look like I might be robbing the place, as opposed to buying apple brandy.

The store did carry calvados.  They had a selection of calvados.  I could have spent over $100 a bottle if I had wanted to do so.  I decided against the expensive bottlings, and went for the middle ground - a $30 bottle called Calvados Noble-Dame.

Now at the store, the scotch aisle happened to be right next to the brandy/cognac aisle.  It wouldn't hurt to take a peek, just to see what they had, right?  What do you know - Balvenie Doublewood on sale?  Don't mind if I do!

So before I've even made this drink, I'm already out of pocket $75.  Yeah, that's right, I'm including the price of the scotch.  There's a chance that I make the Jack Rose this once, and never again.  I don't suppose I'll acquire a taste for apple brandy either, though we'll see.  I've spent more money on worse things.

Here's the recipe:

Jack Rose

American Bar, page 121

3/4 oz lemon juice
1 barspoon powdered sugar
dashes grenadine
1 1/2 oz Calvados

Shake over ice cubes in a shaker, strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Even before my first sip, we know that this drink is going to be crazy sweet.  Between the lemon juice, the grenadine, the POWDERED SUGAR?!?!  Are you kidding me?  Who puts powdered sugar in a cocktail?

I'll cut to the chase - this thing is really awful.  I won't say it's undrinkable, but it's close.  It tastes like lemonade that's gone bad, if that's possible. You can't taste the apple brandy in any way, not that I know what it would taste like. 

It is very sweet too, in a chalky kind of way, in the way that ice tea mixed with too much Splenda tastes chalky.  Someone has to feel me on this one.

The drink was a dud - but maybe all is not lost - I mean, I still have the apple brandy, right?!  I'm going to pour myself a glass in a good ol' brandy snifter.  Look how classy it looks!

Holy hell this stuff is awful too!!  It tastes like it was made in the backyard of a meth lab.  How can anyone drink this?

Thank the lord I bought some scotch tonight - anything to wash this terrible terrible taste out of my mouth.

I do this all for you, my loyal reader, all for you.


wibia on February 25, 2010 at 10:51 AM said...

Ha ha... Tastes like backyard meth... Very funny post... keep them coming.

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