July 23, 2015
Once again it’s time for one of our favorite made-up holidays, National Tequila Day!
July 24th is celebrated as National Tequila Day, but Dedicated Readers will know that pretty much everyday is NTD around here!
Okay, so let’s celebrate with a drink recipe, shall we?
Tequila Thyme Lemonade
2 oz Silver Tequila (break out the good stuff for this…)
1/2 oz Lemon Juice (fresh-squeezed of course)
1/2 oz Simple Syrup (you know how to make this by now, don’t you???)
2 Generous Lemon Wedges
6 Sprigs of Fresh Thyme
Put the lemon juice, one of the lemon wedges, five of the thyme sprigs and the simple syrup into your shaker and muddle to break down the lemon and thyme. Add the tequila and a good handful of ice or two and shake until well-chilled (or until the darn shaker gets so cold you can’t hold the sucker any longer!).
Take a spiffy glass and add some fresh ice. Strain the tasty liquid into same…
Garnish with the remaining thyme and lemon slice, take a couple of pictures, and drink away!
Since it’s predominantly tequila (and not like that’s a bad thing…) this is a slow-sipping beverage, but it doesn’t seem too strong at all. Tart and refreshing, this is a great drink to celebrate National Tequila Day on a steamy day in July!
This recipe came from Total Wine, so a big two thumbs-up to them! Hope you try and enjoy this! Please be sure to Like and Share with your adult-beverage-loving friends!
Back to the kitchen (with a stop at the bar on the way…), see you again soon!
May 17, 2013
Margarita of the Month: May
A few weeks ago I was wandering through the produce section of my neighborhood Publix and was confronted with a pile of somewhat mis-shapen fruits labeled as “Honey Mangos”. They were on sale for the pauperly price of a buck each, so I picked a few up with (what else but) margaritas in mind.
I searched through a few mango margarita recipes for inspiration, and based the following recipe loosely on one from the new Rick Bayless Frontera book. Let’s pull out the blender and get started….
Honey Mango Margarita
3 ounces Silver Tequila
1 1/2 ounces fresh Lime Juice
1 ounce Cointreau (or other orange liquor)
2 ounces Honey Mango Puree (see below)
1 1/2 ounces light Agave Nectar (or Simple Syrup)
4 or 5 fresh Basil Leaves
Slice of Lime and Fresh Basil for garnish if desired
Salt for rimming the glass if desired
First we make the mango puree – peel and pit the mangoes (use a couple and you’ll have plenty extra puree which should keep in the fridge for three or four days). The fruit has an odd, elongated pit, but it’s not that hard to navigate.
Cut the flesh into roughly 1″ chunks and toss into a blender. Process until smooth, scraping down the sides of the blender as needed.
Rim your glasses with salt if desired (and you will desire to…).
Put the basil leaves in the bottom of a cocktail shaker and muddle a bit to release their flavor then add the tequila, lime juice, Cointreau, mango puree and agave nectar. Throw in a good handful of ice cubes, put the top on and shake well until very cold.
Strain the drink into your prepared glass (straight up or on the rocks, as you prefer), garnish as desired and bottoms up!
This turned out to be a wonderful concoction, sweet and fruity from the mango and the bit of basil adds just the right notes of herbaceousness (cool word there, huh?). The honey mango lived up to it’s name, you could certainly use a non-honey mango (or maybe something else like peaches when in season), but taste before you puree, you may want to add a bit of granulated sugar if the fruit is not very sweet. I also think this would take well to some added heat if you’re so inclined – mango and hot peppers often being paired in Caribbean cuisine – try adding a bit of habanero or jalapeno when muddling the basil.
I think you’ll really like this one! Miss Bonnie gave it two thumbs up (well, really one thumb, the other was involved in holding her glass). Please try, and as always, leave your comments!
Back to the kitchen (and the bar), see you soon!
April 1, 2013
well, sort of…
If you listen to any Disney-centric podcasts, or frequent any Disney related message boards, the subject of “Four Parks in One Day” inevitably comes up…
How feasible is it to visit all four Walt Disney World parks in a single day? What highlights would you show someone who’s never been to the World if you took them to all the parks in a day? And so on…
A while back this sort of talk got me to thinking about the fun that could ensue from having Four Margaritas in Four Parks in a Day… and after mentioning this idea (and some other, somewhat idiotic alcohol-related quests) to Miss Bonnie I thought not much more about it.
Until late February that is, and the Best Holiday of the Year, National Margarita Day, came around!
Miss Bonnie and I, along with several members of the Harem (Mamma Ginny, Papa Harry and Lori Loves Tigger) were going to be in the World on that most Holy-of-Holy Tequila Days, and the ever-wise Bonnie suggested we finally give my goal a try!
Okay, I know Dedicated Readers are saying Four Parks? Four Margaritas? Is there some Magic Place in the Magic Kingdom that serves the Best Cocktail Ever??? Well, sadly no, and even though there is now beer and wine during dinner inside the Beast’s castle, there is not a ‘rita to be had, so for one of the four parks, we’re going to have to fudge a bit…
One option for the “Fourth Park” could be Downtown Disney (the future “Disney Springs”), and the waterfront Margarita Bar, where they do make a nice beverage…
but as Miss Bonnie & I were lodging around Crescent Lake, we all decided to meet up there and start our Tequila Trek at Boardwalk Joe’s on (where else but) the Boardwalk.
Like the kiosk at Downtown Disney, they also make a nice (and also not-inexpensive) drink here… the beverage of choice for this day was the high-end Patron Anejo…
this was a nice start to the festivities, but from there we had to get a move on… whereas most of the “Four Park” type events start at rope drop and go to the last fireworks at night, we didn’t start until about 5 in the afternoon, and with two of the parks (Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios) closing at 7 that night, we had a lot of traveling (and drinking) to get in in a short amount of time! And to add to the time constraints, we were only going to use Disney transportation (and our legs) to get from place to place, everyone was taking part in the festivies, and with no sober designated driver no Harem member needed to be behind a wheel during this event!
So we hopped a bus from the Boardwalk Resort to take us to Miss Bonnie’s favorite park (and the home of one of my favorite bars on property) Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
When we arrived we quickly hoofed it to the Africa section of the park, and right across the bridge on the left we came to the Dawa Bar in the busy village of Harambe.
The Dawa Bar is a spacious, open-air area next to the Tusker House restaurant, and is a great place to get a respite from the heat of Animal Kingdom. And yes, have a tasty cocktail, or three…
but on this day, we sadly only had time for one, and the choice du jour just had to be the African Margarita.
This refreshing beverage features a South African tangerine liqueur that is apparently-unobtainable-to-normal-humans (if you know where to find it, drop me a note!) – this flavor makes this different from any other margarita on property, and truly one of my favorites!
We took a seat to have a quick rest, drank down about half of our drinks, then downed the rest on our way back out of the park to make our next stop in Hollywood Studios.
After the bus arrived at the Studios, we hustled in not long before the turnstiles closed and made our way to the Tune-In-Lounge next to the ’50’s Prime Time Cafe.
Dedicated Readers know that this is definitely one of my favorite haunts on Property, and home to my Favorite Blonde Czech Bartender (who unfortunately was not there for this weekends festivities, but Ivan, who has served us more than once, was there to take care of our tequila needs).
In addition to drinks we also ordered some not-too-bad onion rings to help sop up the tequila.
I think the straight-forward Patron Silver Margaritas here are great (and goodness knows I’ve had plenty of them!) – if you’re looking for a good, basic ‘rita on property you could certainly do worse than the one here.
Now with three drinks, and three “parks” down, we had a bit of time to spare and made the scenic walk from the Studios to (my favorite park) Epcot, and what has become the epicenter of the Margarita World on Property…
La Cava del Tequila in the Mexico pavilion.
This cozy, and incredibly popular, spot in Epcot was luckily for us sparsely inhabited as we looked for our final drink of the quest, and we were able to snag a table while most of the other Epcot guests found their spots to view Illuminations.
To wrap up our Margaritafest I chose something a bit different, the Pineapple Margarita – I figured the healthy extra fruity goodness of the pineapple would counteract some of the deleterious effects of all the alcohol – yeah, right…
So there you have it dear Dedicated Readers, our festival of Four Parks and Four Margaritas as we celebrated National Margarita Day! It was sure fun and I can’t wait to do it again next year!
Have you done any unique “Four Park” things? Or any different adult-beverage-related trips around the parks? If so, please share in the comments!
Back to the kitchen – see you soon!
March 5, 2013
Margarita of the Month: March
Well, once again we spent too much time drinking and celebrating margaritas in February (more on that in another post…) to get you a recipe for that month, so let’s not waste too many days in March before we try something new…
This recipe is inspired by one from Rick Bayless’ book Frontera: Margaritas, Guacamoles and Snacks (and I’m sure we’re going to be seeing more recipes from or inspired by this tome in the coming months…). So let’s get to it, shall we?
3 ounces Reposado Tequila
1 1/2 ounces fresh Lime Juice
1 1/2 ounces Cointreau (or other orange liquor)
3 ounces Pineapple Puree (see below)
Coarse Salt for rimming the glass
Piece of Pineapple and/or Lime for garnish as desired
First make the Pineapple Puree – take half of a fresh peeled and cored pineapple and cut into about 1″ pieces and put into a blender or food processor, add 1/2 cup sugar…
and 1/2 cup water. Process until very smooth and foamy (maybe 2-3 minutes).
Strain through a fine sieve (push down/stir with a spoon as needed), cover and refrigerate until needed (can be made 2-3 days ahead). Bayless notes that extra puree can be used to make pineapple agua fresca by adding sparking (or still water), some lime juice and maybe more sugar and serving over ice… but I’m thinking you may want to make lotsa margaritas… okay, time to move on…
Moisten the rim of a glass (or two if you’re willing to share) with a bit of pineapple of slice of lime and upend the glass into the coarse salt to rim the glass.
Put the tequila, lime juice, Cointreau and pineapple puree in a cocktail shaker with a good handful of ice cubes and shake away until good and chilled.
Pour the pineapple-goodness into the prepared glass, garnish if desired, and sip away! Makes one big (my size) drink, or maybe two normal ones…
If you’re a pineapple fan (as I am), this one is a keeper for sure! For a little bit of bite, try adding some dried chili of your choice to the salt for rimming the glass – the sweetness of the pineapple can certainly handle it…
Give this one a try & let everyone know your thoughts in the comments!
Back to the bar…
February 22, 2013
This Friday, February 22, is National Margarita Day!
I just don’t know why we don’t get a day off work for this one!
And if you need any inspiration for celebrating the day, check out our Margarita of the Month recipes – I’m sure you’ll find at least one that will strike your tequila-fueled-fancy!
Enjoy the day – responsibly of course!
Back to the bar…