Thursday, April 1, 2010

Dia Del Amor

Today is the first of a couple reader submitted drink ideas.  Mike, hailing from beautiful Dayton, Ohio, thought it would be germane to make a cocktail using St. Germain.  (I'm so proud of that last sentence)  Thank you Mike for the suggestion, and your readership.  Keep sending in suggestions, as we'll no doubt be doing this in the future.

I realized after receiving Mike's e-mail, and acknowledging that it was a stellar idea, that I did not have a bottle of St. Germain on hand.  This, of course, necessitated another trip to the local bottle shop.

Barca, the Official Mascot of the Amateur Mixologist, was along for the ride.  At various times, she perched up against the car window and at other times she laid out on the backseat.  Then, she sat like a person (well, as much as a dog can sit like a person anyway), which I found enormously entertaining.

Once at the store, and Barca safely confined for the 5 minutes I was inside, I found the St. Germaine fairly quickly.  It sat along side other liqueurs, like peach schnapps and apple pucker.  Seemed out of place really, as St. Germaine is made from handpicked elderflower blossoms from the Alps.  The friggin' Alps!  And it sits next to the apple pucker!  France, the country of St. Germaine's origin, would be horrified, and rightly so.  At least have the decency to place it next to the Cointreau.  Come on people, help a French-made liqueur out.

After returning from the store, I set out to find a suitable recipe.  I happened upon the Dia Del Amour recipe, and decided it was good enough.  And, it has tequila. 

As mentioned in the Toreador post, I have a history with tequila, and am learning to love it.  Right now, I'm just at the like stage, but am hoping for some serious-like, or something similar, in the next couple of months.  Love may be another year away, I don't know.  In any event, the recipe is called Dia Del Amour, so there is a bit of love in the air, even if in name only.

Here is what the Dia Del Amour looks like:

Dia Del Amour

2 dash(es) hot sauce
1 1/2 part(s) tequila
1 part(s) St-Germain Elderflower Liqueur
3/4 part(s) lime juice

Shake and strain into chili salt rimmed rocks glass. Garnish with a lime wheel.

For this drink, I'm using 1800 Tequila, Nellie & Joe's Key West Lime Juice and Cholula Hot Sauce.  I don't have a lime, unfortunately, but loyal readers know that according to Amateur Mixologist Rule #4, and as first stated in the Velvet Champagne Amour post, "[a] drink should never be avoided as a result of little-to-no garnish availability."

Also, I have no idea what chili salt is, and definitely do not have any in my pantry.  I looked online for it too, but could not find any further information.  As a result, I figured it may be similar to seasoning salt, like what you'd put on a steak if you were so inclined.  I have consumed bloody mary's with seasoning salt rimming the glass, so why not this too.  That's what I did, pulling out the seasoning salt and using the lime juice as the mechanism to wet the rim of the glass.

Done and done.

Admittedly, I didn't think this drink's combination of ingredients would work, but it does.  It's an interesting mix of spicy and sweet, and I dig it.  The St. Germain and the lime juice provided the sweetness, the hot sauce, tequila and seasoning salt provided the spice. 

I'll tell you what though, when using a small amount of liquid in total, be careful how much hot sauce you use.  In a bloody mary, for instance, there's enough liquid and ice to dilute the heat from rampant hot sauce usage.  Not here.  A couple sips in, and my throat was closing up fast, as if the drink had gone down the wrong way.  No no, it was merely the heat that was doing it.

With the first sip, you're going to pull a small amount of the seasoning salt, which, in moderation, is a nice flavor.  Then, you'll taste the mix of ingredients.  At this point, the heat from the hot sauce kicks in - and that's when it all comes together. 

The drink reminds me of the Toreador, and the tequila has everything to do with it.  Tequila has proven to be stellar in mixed cocktails, though, I knew that to be the case.  A freshly made margarita is remarkably good.  In fact, I'd venture to say that I've never had a tequila based cocktail that I didn't enjoy. 

I'm in serious-like with tequila folks, serious-like.  And, if you have suggestions as to a good sipping tequila, please share in the comments or by e-mail.  I think I'm ready to step out and give it another whirl.


The Amateur Mixologist on April 1, 2010 at 10:54 AM said...

Quick update: Apparently, chili salt is a little more common than I first thought. A co-worker informed me that she has some friends with a recipe. If/when I get it, I'll be sure to share.

She also thought it was likely available at Mexican groceries, etc.

Anonymous said...

I just tried this new "sipping" tequila called Casa Dragones--highly recommended!

The Amateur Mixologist on April 5, 2010 at 1:08 PM said...

Will definitely look into Casa Dragones - appreciate the suggestion!

Anonymous said...

1. I made this using Camarones Reposado. It's a great reposado, very affordable, and it makes fantastic margaritas.

2. We didn't have chili salt on hand so I tried our Penzey's 4/S seasoning salt and it was amazing. It's pretty complex - salt, sugar, black pepper, paprika, onion, tumeric, garlic, celery, rosemary, thyme. Fantastic.

3. For the hot sauce - we used 3 drops of DJ Jardine's Texas Kicker and it kicked our butts.

All in all, really great drink. Next time I'm going to try it with triplum/triple sec.

Many thumbs up!

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