I am very excited to announce a new series that my brother, Dylan Pinter, is going to write for this blog called...
It will be all about Adult Beverages, don't you know. He'll try to share one cocktail a week with you fine people. So let's get to it...
As a former bartender in NYC for 3 years, my tastebuds may have been a little spoiled. Although I was relieved to get out of the service industry, I missed having the ability to make delicious cocktails at my fingertips. So, I decided to build up my bar at home. Now, some people have called me a "cocktail snob" and think they can't make the "fancy" cocktails that I make, and to that I say nay! The cocktails I make are not that fancy, and in fact, they're quite simple to make.
First and foremost, there are a few essentials tools and ingredients that you'll need in order to make cocktails at home without turning your bar/kitchen/wherever it is you so choose to make cocktails into a wet, sticky mess.
1. Bitters (Angostura is the most common, but I like Fee Brother's Old Fashioned Bitters)
2. Simple Syrup
This is just equal parts sugar and water, brought to a boil and slightly reduced for about 7 minutes
3. Fresh squeezed lemon and lime juice
Make sure to juice these over a strainer at to avoid pulp and seeds.
4. Mixing tins (You can find these at most liquor stores or restaurant supply stores. I like to stay away from the conventional household cocktail shakers that have a lid on them, because a lot of times the lid is difficult to get off, and it limits the amount of cocktail you can shake. Either use a Boston Shaker, which is a big tin and a pint glass, or a big tin and a small tin)
5. Jigger (This is what you measure your ingredients with. Mine measure 1/2 oz. and 1 oz.)
6. A small fine mesh strainer
7. Pestle (aka muddler)
Once you have these, your life will be a lot easier, and now you can make delicious "fancy" cocktails!
THE EAST SIDE
This a classic cocktail called the East Side, and it's one of my most favorite summer cocktails. Some people make the East Side with cucumber and mint, but I think it tastes way better with just cucumber. The mint just over powers the delicious subtle flavor of cucumber, which mixes so damn well with gin.
That being said, let's make it!
2.5 oz. Gin
1 oz. Lime juice
1 oz. Simple syrup
2 slice of cucumber
Muddle 2 slices of cucumber (about 1/2 inch thick each) in the the bottom of your mixing tin.
Add the rest of the ingredients into the tin. Add ice, and secure your tins, making sure they're airtight.
Shake vigorously for about 10 seconds and strain over a small fine mesh strainer over fresh ice. Garnish with a thin slice of cucumber, and enjoy!
This cocktail is actually meant to be served up in a martini or cocktail glass, but that makes life a lot more difficult at home. Especially if you have pets and/or kids that like to knock stuff over, like my cat Rudy. Also, if you don't like the taste of gin, then you can always substitute it for vodka. But, I recommend trying the gin, before you make any decisions you may regret. It's awesome…