On the occasion of my 32nd birthday last weekend, my crew and I (nÃ©e The Lametourage, since renamed The VC — as in, The Vicious Circle) decided to take in a viewing of the latest Twilight movie (a.k.a. laugh at the screen). There’s absolutely no way to slog through the vampire saga sober; so clearly, cocktails were in order. But what beverage would suitably get the job done? Well, once again we turned to Paul Abercrombie’s Organic, Shaken, and Stirred. Thankfully IndianJones had his copy with him since I had lost mine on my recent Thanksgiving trip to NYC (there had been a request for “cousin cocktails” around the turkey, and regrettably I made the foolish decision to take the book back East for the occasion where it promptly disappeared into the cold night. I have to order a new copy now, grrr). Anyway, in honor of the brooding vampires and werewolves of the great Northwest, we decided to whip up a batch of Dark & Stormys. But this wasn’t just any old Dark & Stormy recipe (traditionally, it’s just ginger beer and rum). No, this libation had all sorts of stuff going on.
Full details after the jump…
First, let me warn you that while I toiled away in the kitchen prepping the pitcher of drinks, IndianJones opted to nap on my couch, which meant I had no one to document the quaff assemblage. I’ve instead gathered random picture from across the internet to represent the process. Any complaints should be directed towards IndianJones.
First I must juice two cups worth of orange juice, which doesn’t take as long as it might sound. Oranges have plenty of juice in them, and soon I reach the required amount fairly quickly.
Wringing twelves ounces of juice from limes, however, is another story. It takes a long time — even with a juicer — and requires several limes. Why so much juice? We actually doubled Abercrombie’s recipe, which claimed to make four drinks. However, we’ve learned his serving sizes tend to run small, and our quantities tend to run big.
Once I’ve juiced all my citrus, I then have to grind up a quarter of a teaspoon of cloves. No problemo.
Into the mix goes eight ounces of agave nectar. We actually only put in about six though.
We also need ginger juice, which is a little tricky to make. The recipe suggests grating ginger into a cheesecloth and wringing out the liquid, but I found that grating was tedious and not terribly effective. I simply put the ginger in the Magic Bullet, pulverized it, emptied it into a paper towel, and squeezed. With a little effort, I managed to extract the necessary two tablespoons of ginger juice.
Grated ginger. It’s like you’re THERE!
There’s not a lot of yield, when it comes to ginger juice. I got about a tablespoon for every two inches of ginger (peeled).
Finally, the fun stuff: dark rum. I purchased Bacardi Select, mostly because it was on sale for like $9. Score!
We then headed up to jash’s place, mixed everything together, and poured into glasses. We topped each drink off with prosecco. And no, we did not use this Paris Hilton-endorsed brand. But maybe in the future…
The result: insanity! I wasn’t sure how this drink would compare to the classic Dark & Stormy that I’m used to. I mean, orange juice? Cloves? Prosecco? It just seemed like an entirely different drink. However, the flavor was right on point, and perhaps better than just ginger beer and rum. It’s amazing how just two tablespoons of ginger juice can infuse the entire batch with such a potent ginger flavor, but that’s exactly what happened. Meanwhile, the cloves added a festive and earthy note, which seemed seasonally appropriate, what with the holidays and all.
And did I mention how strong the drinks were? Halfway through my first round, I already felt buzzed. And it wasn’t just me: IndianJones and Sly were also feeling it early on. Then again, Sly may have simply been overstimulated by the mere presence of Taylor Lautner on screen. There was much moaning from her end of the couch, and we weren’t sure if it was because of the booze or the boys. Probably both.
Anyway, I can assure you all that this Dark & Stormy recipe is the bomb. It works particularly well at this time of year, but quite frankly, I could have it at the height of summer too. It’s a definite winner…
(As for the movie, it was idiotic. Everyone said it was the best of the three. We all agreed it was the worst. Then again, we did talk over most of it. Oh well.)