Get thee to a barstool and raise your cup, pathetic Oliver Twist-style: the Ravenous Pig releases their first batch of barrel-aged cocktails tonight, and you're gonna be all please sir, may I have some more? After sampling the bartenders' concoctions – a Negroni, a rum cocktail dubbed El Presidente, and a ginger-and-rye creation they're calling, uh, Ginger in the Rye – customer votes at the Tuesday night kickback will determine which cocktail gets a permanent spot on the menu.
"But Jessica," you may be asking*, "what's a barrel-aged cocktail? And why do I care?"
Barrel-aging is supposed to do for a cocktail the same thing it does for wine, bourbon, or beers aged in oak: Aging adds layers of complexity and blends hard edges, oak adds rich flavors of its own to the existing profile. There are other places in town you can get a barrel-aged cocktail – I've tasted them at the Matador and the Courtesy; please let me know if you've had one elsewhere in Orlando so I can go sample. Should you be nuts enough to want to try and make your own, I like your style, and here's a book that will help you get started: Craft Cocktails at Home: Offbeat Techniques, Contemporary Crowd-Pleasers and Classics Hacked With Science, by Kevin K. Liu.
RavPig communiqué follows:
The time has come—After more than 5 weeks, The Ravenous Pig's first batch of BARREL-AGED COCKTAILS are ready. Join us tomorrow, Tuesday, March 25, to sample the first batch of delicious concoctions our bartenders have been coddling like their own children. And not that we're competitive... But make sure you vote on your favorite cocktail at the bar after sampling. The winning cocktail becomes a menu mainstay.
- NEGRONI, by Anderson: smooth ambler gin, dolin rouge, campari
- EL PRESIDENTE, by Harrison: damoiseau cane rum, dolin blanc, dolin rouge, pierre ferrand dry curacao
- GINGER IN THE RYE, by Kris: george dickel rye, canton ginger liqueur, dolin dry, fernet branca