I’ve been up to very much cocktail related recently. A few highlights.
1. Aged Eggnog. Last year I made Ruhlman’s Aged Eggnog and it was amazing. Everyone got knock-down drunk because it doesn’t taste boozy but it’s freaking 25% alcohol.
So this year of course I had to go over the top. I made 12 fucking gallons of it. Not kidding. That’s 60 liquor bottles worth. No joke. Some of it is for sale to various people I know, but most of it’s just for me.
For most of it I split the whiskey between Old Grand-dad and Old Overholt. I love me some rye, and I feel like the spice goes well with the cream. Old Grand-dad is a rye heavy bourbon, so it comes out pretty tasty.
For a couple gallons of it a friend and I decided to go high class. We got the milk and eggs from local farms, Elijah Craig 12 and Rittenhouse for the whiskey, Plantation Grand Reserva for the rum, and a decent cognac whose name eludes me now. (In my defense, I have been drinking.) I mostly wanted to see what the difference was, other than price, in the final product .
2. Batching app. I had made a batching app for my launch party. You can find it at: http://production.cocktailcalc.divshot.io/
Right now it’s a simple web app. It’ll calculate dilution for you if needed, using the formulas in Liquid Intelligence, and make it easy to scale up. I used that for all of the cocktails at the party and it saved me a shit ton of time.
I have lots of upgrades, and I think divshot will be gone soon so I’ll have to move it to another server. But feel free to use while it’s around.
3. Apple Hard Cider/Brandy. My friend and I decided to make a shit ton of hard cider, so I built a 32 gallon primary fermentor. Basically it’s a food-grade plastic trash can with an airlock built in and shrink-wrapped to be air-tight.
I want to turn it into brandy when it’s done, and thankfully I know a guy who is actually licensed to do so. He has a micro-distillery and some awesome equipment. The goal is to do that, then barrel age it. I’ll probably toss a few gallons of it into a keg and carbonate to make some hard cider, and then get a beer gun and load up bottles because why the hell not?
I’ll probably buy some various barrel staves and barrels for aging the brandy. I have a theory that barrel staves can work just as well as actual bottles, for far less money, you just have to take the stave out and then let the liquor continue to age. I think that people try using them for speed and it never comes out quite right, because other things happen during aging than just extracting wood flavor. I’ll give my theory a test.
4. Something I can’t talk about yet. Let’s just say, it’s a project that requires government licensing and as such I’ll be lucky if I can talk about it in 6 months to a year. But happy.