Monday, August 06, 2018

Lucian Bacchanal

You're twisting my melon, man.
Its Happy Monday here at Compere Lapin!

Every Monday at 4pm we will be going over a cocktail on our menu, how its made, what inspired it and then do a tasting of the base spirit in said cocktail. 

This 20-30 minute class is free and open to the public! And the cocktail of the week will a $6 happy hour special at the bar on that Monday til 6pm! 

Today we did the Lucian Bacchanal. This is a drink I invented under a different name 10 years ago.  The story of that first drink, where I was challenged by another bartender, is here. 

Video of me making that drink can be seen below.  Please forgive the sloppy jigger work and silly hair toss.  I was but a baby bartender in a strange bar and had just gotten my hair did. Tell you prefer my raven locks of hair, or my current curly strawberry blonde?

We discussed in class today how Chairman's worked great, but the Bounty Dark brings out a little more of that mezcal smoke.

Lucian Bacchanal

1.5 oz Bounty Dark Rum
.5 oz Vida Mezcal
.75 oz "Abby's Mix"*
.75 oz Lime Juice

Shake and strain into a cocktail coup/

*To make the "Abby's Mix" which is a play on Don's Mix form Tiki lore:

1:1 ratio by weight / Sugar : Water
1 :1 ratio / whole GF peel for “Abby’s Mix” : per cup of sugar
Peel the skin off oranges and place in a vacuum seal bag.  Add the appropriate amount of sugar to the bag.   (4 whole peels : 4 cups of sugar, 6 whole peels : 6 cups)
Vacuum seal the bag and let sit overnight.  (Write how much sugar is in the bag)
Next day add appropriate amount of hot water to sugar. (4 cups sugar : 4 cups water)

Stir to incorporate and take out left over GF peels.  Use immersion blender if necessary to dissolve sugar. **for Abby’s Mix include 2 cinnamon sticks and 3-5 anise pods per cup of sugar when you add the hot water

The rest of the August schedule for Happy Monday's is below:

TUESDAY August 14th (we are closed on this Monday the 13th)

Cocktail: Boos Teesi 

Spirit: Drumbshambo Gunpowder Irish Gin

Monday August 20

Cocktail: Cherokee Rose

Spirit: Bolivian Brandy

Monday August 27

Cocktail: Martino

Spirit: Rye Whiskey

Spreading Love and Knowledge in the Spiritual World!

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Happy Mai Tai Day!

Mai Tai perfection
 Well, as with many Tiki drinks...already we start with controversy.  Trader Vic's would like you to know that the real Mai Tai day, by proclamation of the City of Oakland, is actually August 30th.  It was on this date in 1944, according to them, that Vic himself crafted a rum drink using rock candy syrup, fresh lime, orange curaçao, and orgeat. His Tahitian friend exclaimed “Mai tai roa ae!” which translates to “out of this world!” Thus this most popular Tiki drink was created.

Indeed,  I say, there can't be enough days to celebrate this amazing drink.  So look for another post on August 30th.

Mai Tai Tie!!
Here is the other controversy.  Pineapple juice.  Let me here by proclaim that this post will be about the classic tiki Trader Vic/Donn Beach/ Beachbum Mai Tai, not a Hawaiian Mai Tai.  I went to Hawaii last year and can confirm their Mai Tais are quite different with the addition of both pineapple and passionfuit and a very dark rum float.  I think we need to approach this drink like a "New Orleans Daiquiri".  Its going to be different with its own regional flair, and I accept and embrace that....when I am in Hawaii.

But today I am in glorious New Orleans!  And am about to embark on a Mai Tai crawl through the French Quarter.  First stop is my home bar of Compere Lapin, natch.  Bartender James whipped me up the prefect Mai Tai to start my day.

Think of a Mai Tai as an orgeat Daiquri had a baby with an agricole Daisy.  The Daisy being lime, spirit and orange curacao; we are going to use Clement Creole Shrubb, to perfectly compliment the aged agricole, in this case, Rhum JM VO, aged at least 3 years. 

The Daiquiri part would be lime, rum and sugar, in this case taking the form of orgeat, an almond rose water syrup popular in Tiki. With almonds and rose or orange water, it does indeed have it roots in the Mediterranean. It can be homemade if you are feeling ambitious,  but there are many fine pre-made versions available as well.  

The rums, according to the drinks inventor, were to be from Martinique and Jamaica.  But we are creating a dry funky Mai Tai for a modern palate that would go well with the Creole Caribbean food of our Chef, Nina Compton.  She is from St Lucia, so we will surely use Bounty or Chairman's reserve from her home Island in place of the Jamaican Rum.

So have a Mai Tai today, August 30th and, indeed, every and any day in between!

Happy May Tai Day from James and Abigail!
Easy steps on how to Mai Tai on Mai Tai Day!

1 oz Chairman's Reserve Rum
1 oz Rhum JM VO
.5 oz Rhum Clement Creole Shrubb
.5 orgeat
.75 oz lime.
Whip shake and put over crushed ice.
Garnish with mint sprig and lime wheel
. And for an extra touch I add a float of Chairman's Reserve Forgotten Cask to float on the top.

Wednesday, June 06, 2018

Rhum Old Fashioned

Rhum JM VSOP Old Fashioned from Beachbum Berry's Latitude 29
Just because the weather is heating up, it doesn't mean you have to forgo your Old Fashioned.  Spirit forward drinks sipped leisurely over big cool ice is actually just the thing for fighting off the blazing summer sun.  Especially if you use that elixer made from sugar cane in the tropics; rum.

And for those of you put off by the molasses heavy sweetness of traditional dark rums, I have the solution. Rhum Agricole.   Agricole is French, but from the Latin, agricola, meaning, ager (field) +‎ -cola (-tiller”, “-cultivator).  Indeed this Rhums are made with cane fresh from the fields, unlike the h-less rums made from molasses, a byproduct of sugar production.  The result is a dry, grassy and green spirit bursting with terroir and flavor.  When aged, in their tradition French casks, the result can be as fine as cognac with a Caribbean twist.

Rhums from Martinique are labeled "AOC Martinique Rhum Agricole" because French and European law allowed a designation called "Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée" (protected designation of origin) for rums produced on the island of Martinique.  That means both the quality of the production and the workers on that Island get the protection of putting out a quality product with quality wages. This is a feel good drinking rhum inside and out! 

So order an aged rhum agricole Old Fashioned from your next cocktail bar and keep the Don Draper in Martinique vibes all summer long!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Gentleman Caller

My handsome Gentleman Caller

My Eve app is telling me I am fertile right now.  I guess that is why I wanted to devour this handsome fella at the dog park today.

Alas, no man has come a calling in a while so I'll just have to drink my sorrows in this Gentleman Caller.  

This is one of those drinks that has classic specs and can be quite versatile.  In fact, I originally made it with the rhum agricole, but changed it to gin when I saw we had too many rum drinks on the menu. Is that possible?  I think not. 

This drink has been names one of the best cocktails of 2016 and has been published in a St-Germain cocktail book called How To Drink French Fluently.  In the book I subbed out the hard to find genet for St-Germain.  See?  I told you it was versatile.

Aperitif and digestives are an essential part of the ritual for eating and drinking.  We are a restaurant/bar and our cocktails are tailor made to go with that experience of eating and drinking in harmony.  The Gentleman Caller is a light aperitif cocktail consisting of Aperol, Fino sherry, Genepy and gin.  The bitter full brightness of the Aperol and Genepy (an herbal French liqueur) prepare the mouth and belly for food, opening up all your flavor receptors.

The Gentleman Caller was inspired by one of my favorite sherry cocktails, The Adonis, from the Savoy Cocktail Book.  A fine dry sherry like a Fino or Manzanilla is so elegant and complex.  This drink manages to enhance and balance that elegance with other equally complex ingredients. Its a sexy drink too.  Served in a Nick & Nora glass, so named for Nick & Nora Charles in the Thin Man Movies of the late 1930's and 40's.  Nick Charles was a scoundrel but a gentleman all the same.  The Gentleman caller...I like the name as men order the cocktail because they want to be one, and women because they want to have one.

Gentleman Caller

  • 1 oz Fino sherry
  • 1 oz Gin
  • 3/4 oz Aperol
  • 3/4 oz Genepy

stir and serve up in a chilled Nick & Nora glass.  Garnish with a twirly mustache of a lemon twist.  I love mustachioed gentleman.  LeSigh!

Monday, November 21, 2016

Salted Caramel Milk Punch

Fort Defiance Bourbon Milk Punch...where I cut my milk punch teeth.

Milk punch is a New Orleans Brunch usually has brandy, bourbon or rum.  In this case we are using a homemade salted caramel sauce.

Salted Caramel Milk Punch

1 1/2 oz salted caramel sauce*
dash of vanilla
4-5 oz of whole milk or half and half.

Shake all ingredients and serve over ice in a rocks glass.  Garnish with fresh grated cinnamon and nutmeg and pinch of sea salt.

*Salted caramel sauce:

1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup heavy cream
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
¾  - 1 teaspoon kosher salt to taste
Stir together sugar and 1 tablespoon water in a small saucepan, place over medium-high heat, and bring to a boil. Let boil until amber in color, about 3 minutes.

Immediately add butter and stir to incorporate. Remove from heat, add cream, slowly, and salt, and mix well. Serve immediately or let cool to room temperature, cover, and refrigerate.

Thursday, April 14, 2016


Bunny in all her glory

Far and away our most popular cocktail at Compere Lapin is the Andromeda.  When Ricky set our bar in motion he was determined to have an egg white cocktail be our vodka cocktail.  I will admit.  I was skeptical at first.  After three years in the French Quarter, I lost some of the fight in me to challenge guests to go outside their comfort zone.  But a Vodka cocktail is inherently approachable and that is in my wheelhouse.  So we set to work on a vodka egg white cocktail.  The first one, delicious Fontanarosa, had beet juice too!  Talk about throwing uneasy vodka drinkers under the bus! 

The next one used the new bartender ketchup, Gifford's Pamplemousse Rose (Grapefruit), El Guapo Rose Cordial, honey syrup and a near split base of Pisco and St George Green Chili Vodka.  I love that sometimes when you create a complex drink, it has very simple origins.  This, to me, is essentially a pisco sour variation.  But it is so much more.  The 50/50 sugar/salt rim mixed with the green chili makes it reminiscent of a margarita.  The rose and grapefruit are unique and all the flavors come together to be a sum even greater than its parts.

And when Ricky carved out that rabbit stencil, all bets are off.  This cocktail is a showstopper.

Now we have to have back up quarts of egg whites to get through a night of service.  Andromedas go flying out all night long.  My pisco guy loves me.

Oh and the name?  Andromeda is the galaxy closest to our own and is known for bumping into other galaxies so look out!  It is also the only name I wanted to change mine to when I was a child.  I was really obsessed with Clash of the Titans at the time.  Harry Hamlin.  Still would.


1 oz Pisco
3/4 oz St George Green Chili Vodka
1/2 oz Gifford Pamplemousse Rose
1/2 oz El Guapo Rose Cordial
1/4 oz Honey syrup (2:1)
3/4 oz lime
1/2 oz egg white

Stake and strain into a chilled cocktail glass with a 50/50 sugar salt half rim
top with Peychauds bitters.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Move Over T. Rex

The blurb on the lower left of this clip is I hope referring to my awesome transformation into Mardi Gras Glam Rock Goddess.  No?  Ok.  I know.  I need a new wig.  And I need to take better care of my voice! But I do love how my king cake fascinator looks on camera.  And I do love how this daiquiri tastes.   Watch me make it below.  

Its my favorite time of year here in New Orleans.  King Cake for breakfast, day drinking and gym everyday to balance the debauchery.  Every night I sleep on a pile of tinsel, glitter and false eyelashes.

Le bon temp roule here in New Orleans, my dears!

King Cake Daiquiri

2 oz white rum
1 oz fresh lime juice
3/4 oz Cocktail & Sons King Cake Syrup
mist of absinthe

Shake all but the absinthe in a mixing tin with cracked ice. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass misted or rinsed with absinthe.