dinsdag 10 mei 2022

Sea you after dinner


Most herbal liqueurs and Amari will help your digestion. Probably this will also be the case for liqueurs based on sea buckthorn. Clinical studies state that the oils of sea buckthorn “may improve digestion”, so let’s work with that. 

Our friends at Seaberry Liqueurs have sent us a bottle of Duno liqueur, together with a jar of seaberry marmalade. This screams for a nice after-dinner serving. And as it happens to be, my 11y old daughter just baked some fresh cupcakes today…

Sea you after dinner

Ingredients
30 ml Duno Liqueur
30 ml Campari
30 ml London Dry Gin

Method
Add all ingredients to your tumbler with ice. Stir for 15 seconds. Garnish with dehydrated orange. 

Serve with a fresh-baked cupcake, halved and spread with Duno sea buckthorn marmalade. This is sooooooooo good… 

Disclaimer: All pictures and texts are copyrighted by Geert Conard and Esito Management & Communications unless stated otherwise in the article. While some items might have been gifted by the producer or distributor, these are in no way paid promotions or recommendations.

donderdag 5 mei 2022

Play that Cello


My wife has Italian roots. That means she also inherited all the typical Italian characteristics. What does that mean? A lot of cursing behind the wheel, lots of black coffee, she loves to cook and... each year she brews her own limoncello and arancello.

So, whenever I have to test any kind of ‘cello’, she is always interested and in the end she always decides her old family recipe, handed down from generation to generation is the best. That last part is certainly true. It’s fantastic.

Now, how about these three bottles I received for a test last week. Limoncello based on lemons from Sorrento (Amalfi coast), orancello (In Italy they normally call this arancello?) made from organic South-African oranges. And last but not least, something I had never tasted before, Anguriacello. Same kind of product, but made from watermelon. The Naturals is a Belgian brand owned by Albatross Liqueurs. 

First things first, a neat sip. Flavours are certainly present, alcohol is less than what I’m used to at home. This might be tricky when I start mixing. The first thing I tried was a shot of ‘cello’ topped with good quality Prosecco. Nope, this didn’t work. I either need more alcohol or much more ‘cello’. Let’s try something completely different…. And yes, this was a hit. 

Play that Cello

Ingredients
60 ml Natural ‘Cello’ of your choice
30 ml Vodka
15 ml Fresh lemon juice
10 ml simple syrup

Method
Add everything to a shaker with lots of ice. Give it a good shake and strain over fresh ice in a tumbler. Garnish with citrus.

Disclaimer: All pictures and texts are copyrighted by Geert Conard and Esito Management & Communications unless stated otherwise in the article. While some items might have been gifted by the producer or distributor, these are in no way paid promotions or recommendations.

maandag 2 mei 2022

Duno Cosmo


It’s always interesting to discover variations on old recipes, that really add something new and exciting. Let’s talk about the Cosmopolitan, the pink drink that became extremely popular due to the SATC sitcom on TV. How can we improve this drink. I’ve already done some variations with other juices, but this time I’ve tasted something interesting.

Duno liqueur is a brand new Belgian product, a liqueur made from 100% organic seaberries. Duno contains 25% of alcohol and is very easy to mix. You could also have a shot as a digestif after your meal. Let’s put this liqueur in the spotlight of a new style of Cosmo. 

In this recipe I have used Triple Sec from Social Club, you really need to check their webshop for great apero boxes. 

Duno Cosmo

Ingredients
30 ml Duno liqueur
20 ml vodka
20 ml Triple sec
30 ml cranberry juice
20 ml Lime juice

Method
Add everything to a shaker with ice. Shake for 10 seconds, strain into a nice coupe. Garnish with a lime zest or cocktail cherry.

Disclaimer: All pictures and texts are copyrighted by Geert Conard and Esito Management & Communications unless stated otherwise in the article. While some items might have been gifted by the producer or distributor, these are in no way paid promotions or recommendations. 

zondag 1 mei 2022

Cherry Corn

Some days I just scan through my leftovers and try to find a combination that might work. This time I discovered a jar with a bottom of moonshine in the back of my homebar. You could also use a young bourbon for this recipe. It’s an unusual and very fruity combination, but the result was pretty tasty. 

Cherry Corn

Ingredients
50 ml Ole Smoky Moonshine
10 ml Cherry syrup
1 dash of piment bitters

Method
Add everything to a tumbler with ice. Stir for 10 seconds and add a cocktail cherry and a slice of orange. 

Disclaimer: All pictures and texts are copyrighted by Geert Conard and Esito Management & Communications unless stated otherwise in the article. While some items might have been gifted by the producer or distributor, these are in no way paid promotions or recommendations. 

woensdag 27 april 2022

Julia "The Hive"


Aperitifs exist in all styles and beverages. A good aperitif prepares the stomach for the meal and activates your taste-buds. A glass of good quality Champagne or a simple Gin and tonic are both examples of excellent aperitifs. But that doesn’t mean you have to limit yourself. In Italy for example, people drink lots of aperitifs based on Aperol and Campari such as the spritz, Americano and Negroni. But if you’re a beer enthusiast, a nice pilsner can also be a pretty good aperitif. 

Today I want to show you a different kind of drink, that has the same roots as the popular Mexican Michelada cocktails. It’s a beertail, a cocktail that basically uses beer as a mixer. 

I didn’t pick just any kind of pilsner for the mixer, I got myself a Julia Belgium aperitif. 

Is this a beer? You won’t find the word “beer” anywhere in their marketing. They promote Julia as a brewed aperitif and they already have two flavours available: 

  • Julia “The Birth” - This is a double fermented blond aperitif with a fresh and balanced palate with hints of fruit. Only a slight bitterness and a velvety taste.  This brewed aperitif is infused with cascade and Amarillo hops. It’s a cloudy ‘brew’ because of the production process with malted barley and wheat. 
  • Julia “Sunny Joy” - A mixture of tropical citrus aromas, generated by the combination of Simcoe and Citra hops. 

I decided to use Julia “The Birth” for my drink. The malted barley of course sent my mind in the direction of whisky. But flavour-wise, I thought Bourbon would be a better match. 
Larceny is a "wheated Bourbon" which uses wheat instead of rye, so that must be a perfect match. This Bourbon 
is produced with 68% corn, 20% wheat and 12% malted barley. Other “wheated Bourbons” on the market have a maximum of 16% wheat in the mashbill.

Julia “The Hive”

Ingredients
30 ml Larceny Wheated Bourbon
22 ml Fresh lemon juice
22 ml Honey syrup
Top with Julia “The Birth” brewed aperitif

Method
First add Bourbon, lemon juice and honey syrup to a shaker with ice. Give it a good shake and strain it into your cocktail glass. You can use a highball or any kind of beer glass for this drink. I decided to use the original Julia Belgium glass. Top with the brewed aperitif and give it just a gentle stir. Enjoy!!!

TIP: If you’re still in doubt about mixing Bourbon and pilsner beer, I’ve also created a similar drink for Paal26 Grand CafĂ©, which will be available on the next suggestions menu. 

Disclaimer: All pictures and texts are copyrighted by Geert Conard and Esito Management & Communications unless stated otherwise in the article. While some items might have been gifted by the producer or distributor, these are in no way paid promotions or recommendations.

maandag 18 april 2022

Aikan Easter Old Fashioned

Last day of the extended Easter weekend. As always I had too much chocolate, but I also started thinking of a nice cocktail to pair with those delicious chocolate eggs. When I think of chocolate, I automatically think of rum. But maybe, there are other options…

Aikan whisky is not your average Scotch. After a first maturation of 3 years in Scotland, this whisky is shipped to Martinique, for an extra year of maturation in the tropical climate of the West-Indies. This extra maturation is done in “highly aromatic rhum barrels”. Taste wise, one year in the tropics is the same as 4 years in the UK, with an angel share of 10% instead of 1,5%. 

Aikan means “marriage” in the original language of Martinique. A marriage blending together the best of two worlds.

  • Nose: Fresh, baba au rhum, banana, lime, vanilla, liquerice. 
  • Palate: Fruity tones, mango, brioche, almond, honey, black and green olives.
  • Finish: Long and extensive finish with cherry, vanilla, herbs, overripe tropical fruit. 

Aikan Easter Old Fashioned

Ingredients
60ml Aikan Intense Rhum barrels
10ml Vanilla syrup
2 dashes Angostura cacao bitters

Method
Stir together in a tumbler with ice cubes. Add a cocktail cherry. 

Disclaimer: All pictures and texts are copyrighted by Geert Conard and Esito Management & Communications unless stated otherwise in the article. While some items might have been gifted by the producer or distributor, these are in no way paid promotions or recommendations. 

zaterdag 16 april 2022

Tokyo Martini


With the “Golden Martini” still on my mind, I was wondering how to implement that subtle sweetness in other ways to this great classic drink. When a bottle of Japanese gin landed on our homebar, I knew this would be the opportunity to create an Asian-style Martini. Instead of vermouth, I decided to use a medium sherry, which has a slight sweetness from Pedro Ximenez grapes, mixed in with the Palomino Fino sherry. 

But then again, Tokyo Nights is also no ordinary gin. This gin is distilled from sugar cane molasses… just like rum. It’s made with a secret recipe that uses numerous local plants, such as yuzu bark and matcha powder. Mixed with juniper berries, coriander seeds and liquorice roots you end up with a pretty decent gin. It doesn’t surprise me at all that in this distillery they also produce rum and vodka. 

  • Nose: Strong juniper berries.
  • Palate: Full, fresh yuzu notes.
  • Finish: Long and savoury.

Tokyo Martini

Ingredients
50ml Tokyo Nights Gin
20ml Gonzalez Byass Cristina (Medium Sherry)
1 dash of orange bitters

Method
Stir everything together in a mixing glass with lots of ice. Strain into a chilled Martini glass. Garnish with an orange twist.

Discount code
I was playing around with my brand new Nakano Japanese Chef’s knife for cutting the garnish. You can find a reel on Instagram where you see me cutting three different orange garnishes. If you’re interested in these great knives, visit the Nakano website and enter DOUBLESTRAINGER on checkout as a 20% discount code.

Disclaimer: All pictures and texts are copyrighted by Geert Conard and Esito Management & Communications unless stated otherwise in the article. While some items might have been gifted by the producer or distributor, these are in no way paid promotions or recommendations.