Friday, April 13, 2012

Cocktail Recipe: Angostura Fizz

It is cloudy and drizzling in downtown LA right now, but that kind of matches my energy level after attending the end-of-the-year party for my law school journal last night. (So much fun!) Maybe a little hair of the dog is in order later today? Last Friday, I tried a new drink at Cana with which I'm now obsessed, an Angostura Fizz, and the bartender kindly taught me how to replicate it at home. If you like your cocktails sweet, this is not the drink for you. Myself, I'm a fan of bitter flavors, and Angostura Fizz delivers. It call for a full shot of bitters! If you've ever mixed a Manhattan or an Old Fashion, then you know that most drinks only call for a few drops of bitters. But don't let the shot of bitters turn you off. The drink balances it out. Just see below!

The recipe, as you can see, calls for the "house pomegranate reduction," which in layman's terms means homemade grenadine. You could just buy Rosa's from any old grocery store, but Cana makes their own because they want to be able to control the sweetness. The bartender recommended using 1 part sugar to 4 parts pomegranate juice. So I put 2 cups of POM and 1/2 cup of sugar in a pan and heated it at medium for 5-10 minutes. The sugar will eventually all dissolve, and the juice will begin to reduce, leaving you will a slightly syrupy homemade grenadine.

Now that you have your grenadine (and you let it cool a bit), you can get down to business. You will need a cocktail shaker, 1 egg (whites only), 1 shot of lime juice, 1 shot of grenadine, 1 shot of Angostura bitters, a dash of cream, a few ice cubes on hand, and club soda. The key to this drink is egg whites. It will make your drink frothy and light, which is a wonderful compliment to the bitters.

 Mix the bitters, lime juice, grenadine, cream, and egg whites together in the shaker without ice. (The bartender called this a "dry shake.") Once all the ingredients are mixed, throw in the ice cubes and shake again. At this point you are cooling the drink, so just shake until it feels cold. It should only take a few seconds. (I highly recommend doing all the shaking over a sink. As the egg whites get frothy, they take up more room and create pressure on the lid. This caused the lid of my shaker to start to come off.)

Once you mixture is cool, strain it into a glass. Then (we're almost done, I promise!) toss a bit of club soda onto the left over ice cubes and swirl it around. A lot of the froth has remained on the cubes, so the idea is to use the club soda to wash it out. After a few swirls, strain the club soda-froth mixture onto the top of your drink. Then enjoy! I found my cocktail tasted just like the one at the bar but did not look quite as lovely. If you're a real pro, you will hopefully end up with something as beautiful as this:

PS: If the Angostura Fizz is old hat to you, then mix it up!
  • You can try other bitter liquor bases. I found that I could use half a shot of Fernet Branca and half of shot of bitters for a slightly milder drink (maybe tone down the lime juice and grenadine a smidge if you do this).
  • You can try reducing other kinds of juice for a different flavor.
  • You could also try using some of the many many kinds of flavored bitters available. If you live in LA, stop by Bar Keeper in Silverlake. That shop has dozens of varieties.

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