Tag Archives: Peach Bitters

Indus Colada

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Potato Head Beach Club in Bali make a dreamy, creamy, heavenly cocktail called the Indus Nesos. It’s so good that I can remember the first time I drank it – and that was several years ago. Given that most nights spent in bars end with some kind of memory loss, that’s a hell of a drink.
The 52 Cocktails crew visited the bar recently and foolishly didn’t order one, so this week I thought I’d try making one at home. Then all I’d need is a huge C-shaped structure built out of colourful old window shutters surrounding a vast lawn and swimming pool overlooking the ocean and it would be just like drinking at Potato Head. Easy. Oh, and I’d also need the recipe, and some sunny weather, and a crowd of good-looking people swanning about wouldn’t hurt, either…
Luckily, the menu is on their website and helpfully describes the drink as containing vanilla vodka, vanilla-infused arak (the local rice liquor), apricot brandy, coconut cream and lychee puree, blended and served long. It’s practically a recipe, I thought rather arrogantly as I read it, so, despite not having any arak in the house, it shouldn’t be too hard to re-create. I’ll just double the vanilla vodka content or add some brandy or something. That’ll do.
Well.
What was I saying before about drinking and memory loss? I forget. But I know that a list of ingredients does not a recipe make, and – oh yeah, I remember now – I know that I went out to buy some lychees and forgot to get them, so I had to improvise. Long story short, I used pineapple juice instead of lychee puree and ended up with something that tasted like a cross between an Indus Nesos and a pina colada – not a bad thing at all, though next time I will try making it with the correct ingredients to see if it’s closer to the drink I remember. It’s not very strong but it is a super thick, rich drink – serve it with a spoon so you can scoop the foam up off the top. And if you’re ever in Bali, go to Potato Head and order the real thing so you can compare them!

INDUS COLADA
Serves 4 if you use tumblers, or 2 if you use Collins glasses. I find the coconut cream so rich that I only want a small amount, so I prefer to divide the mix among 4 tumblers.

INGREDIENTS
60ml vanilla vodka (I used Absolut, but if you have a house-infused one, go for it)
45ml apricot brandy (I used a homemade one)
90ml coconut cream
30ml Solerno (a delicious blood orange liqueur; if you can’t get it, use Cointreau)
30ml sugar syrup
5 drops Fee Bros peach bitters
250 ml pineapple juice

GLASS
Tumbler or Collins

METHOD
Chuck everything in a blender with a handful of ice cubes and blend away. Pour into whichever glasses you’re using and sip while pretending you’re somewhere tropical.

DEGREE OF DIFFICULTY
It’s a lot harder than ordering an Indus Nesos at the bar, but at least you don’t have to pay the airfare.

RECIPE BY
This one’s brought to you by the forgetful folk at 52 Cocktails. Who are you again?!

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Nectar-ine of the Julep Gods

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There are some things in life that I just can’t explain, such as why my bottle of Crystal Head vodka insists on wearing a pineapple tea cosy as a beanie and why I haven’t, until now, made a mint julep with white nectarine-infused vodka in it. The idea for this concoction came about when, in order to find a really good mint julep recipe, I read loads about juleps, tried a bunch of different ones (it was all in the name of research I swear), and read somewhere that juleps used to be made with cognanc and peach brandy, which is probably why some recipes for modern-day juleps call for peach slices to be muddled along with the mint. Anyway, you’ll hear the outcome of the mint julep research later (hint: the recipe will be in a book, which will be heavily advertised here – after all, what’s a website without nepotism?); for now, you’re probably either wondering why the hell I used white nectarine vodka instead of peach brandy, or you’re wandering off in search of a drink. So I’ll keep it brief: I didn’t have any peach brandy handy. But I did have some white nectarine vodka, which I made last summer. (To make it, slice up some white nectarines, leaving the skin on but removing the stones. Place in a clean jar with a handful of caster sugar, cover the lot with vodka and then store in a dark place for a few months or until you really want to try adding peach brandy to a julep but discover you don’t have any.)
What does adding it to a julep do? It takes the edge off the bourbon, sweetens the drink and lightens it, making it even more perfect for a hot summer day than a regular julep. And it totally counts as a serve of fruit, right?

INGREDIENTS
15ml white nectarine vodka
15ml sugar syrup
60ml bourbon
12-20 mint leaves, plus a sprig or two of mint to garnish
2 drops Fee Bros peach bitters (optional – they add a teeny bit of peach flavour and are a nod to the original recipe)

GLASS
Tumbler or old-fashioned.

METHOD
Place the mint leaves in the glass and pour in the white nectarine vodka and sugar syrup. Stir gently to combine. Add a heap of crushed or cubed ice and stir again. Add the bourbon and peach bitters and stir again. Garnish with the mint sprig(s) and serve.

DEGREE OF DIFFICULTY
If you’ve got the white nectarine vodka handy, this one’s easy. If you don’t, the hardest part will be waiting several months for the fruit to infuse with the vodka, in which case we highly recommend drinking something else instead.

RECIPE BY
This one’s by the clever folk at 52 Cocktails. Enjoy!

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Life is Peachy

Life is Peachy

Life is Peachy

Having a slow day? Feeling bitter? Why not have a sloe gin day with some peach bitters instead. This luscious, fruity cocktail will help you remember that life is actually pretty good. In fact…drumroll please…

LIFE IS PEACHY

Recipe created by 52 Cocktails

INGREDIENTS 45ml Cadenhead Sloe Gin

15ml peach-infused vodka (use a homemade one – there’s an easy recipe here – or try Absolut Apeach)

15ml sugar syrup

5ml freshly squeezed lime juice

3 shakes peach bitters (I used Fee Brothers, but feel free to use another brand)

GLASS Tumbler

METHOD Half-fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add all ingredients and take out all your frustrations by shaking the hell out of it. Strain into a tumbler and sip while doing something that makes you happy…such as making another cocktail.

DEGREE OF DIFFICULTY Obtaining the ingredients is the hardest part of making this drink. Once you’ve got em all, if you can open a bottle and squeeze a lime (not at the same time, unless you’re some kind of demigod/bartender), you can make this drink.

A NOTE ABOUT THE INGREDIENTS

Cadenhead Sloe Gin is NOT like other sloe gins.

There are lots of different spirits out there to try – gin, tequila, whisk(e)y, cachaça etc – and there are loads of different brands and varieties of each type of spirit to experiment with (see, told you life is peachy).

As such, I don’t always use particular brands of spirits when I’m making a cocktail. I might make a mojito with Havana Club rum one week, and Mount Gay Eclipse Silver the next. Either way I’ll have a good drink – they’ll just taste a bit different from each other.

When I’m following a cocktail recipe, I figure if it specifies which brands of spirits to use, using them will result in a very close approximation of the original drink. (It won’t be exactly the same, but it’ll be close enough.) Substituting other brands will result in a slightly different drink, but that’s part of the fun. And usually the drink works out just fine.

Having said that,  my recipes usually note which brands of spirits I’ve used. This is in case you want to exactly replicate my recipes. Aw. That’s sweet of you. In most cases, though, you can use another brand and the drink will work out just fine…

… but this is an exception.

Like I said before, Cadenhead Sloe Gin is NOT like other sloe gins. Sloe gins are usually a rich, dark ruby colour with a relatively low alcohol content (about 25%, making sloe gin more like a liqueur than a true gin). They are sweet, aromatic and delicious. Cadenhead Sloe Gin is a full-strength gin (46%) that’s matured in oak and has a subtle sloe berry flavour. So although it’s also aromatic and delicious, it’s more of a dry, full-flavoured gin than a liqueur-style sloe gin – I’d go as far as to say it’s in a different category altogether. Which means – sorry – you cannot use another brand of sloe gin in this recipe and expect to get anything near the same result. Unless, of course, you can find another brand of full-strength gin flavoured with sloe berries.

You can sometimes buy Cadenhead online (if you’re in Australia try Nick’s Wine Merchants, though the last time I checked they were sold out).

Peach bitters are available online at Only Bitters or in-store at select Dan Murphy’s (yes, by some kind of miracle Dan’s FINALLY stocks more than just Angostura). I will no doubt rant and rave about bitters at some later date – for now I’ll just say Only Bitters is legendary and you really should check it out.

So, what, exactly, will happen if you use ‘regular’ sloe gin instead of Cadenhead? Stay tuned and find out…or try it and see, and let me know what you think in the comments section!

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