Maybe I shouldn’t be so surprised –after all, I included a “wasabi-tini” in the Spice & Ice book, and (some) wasabi is made partly from mustard. But somehow, nothing quite compares to the inspired nuttiness going on at Drink Dogma, the blog for Houston’s Anvil Bar & Refuge Bar.
“Mustard has a spicy, acidic, vinegar quality that actually shares so much with more common cocktail ingredients like bitters, shrubs, and citrus,” explains Anvil bartender Matt Tanner (I *think* that’s the author of the post, it’s not entirely clear. The photos on the post are certainly his). And put that way, mustard cocktails begin to make sense.
Furthermore, Tanner says, he’s found in the course of experimenting that two major approaches work: infusing whole mustard seeds (“quick and extremely flavorful and typically only takes about twenty-four hours to take hold of a spirit,”), and fresh mustard, particularly a bold spicy Dijon. Infusions are more versatile, playing well with herbs and bitters, while using fresh mustard is “a little more precarious.” Here’s one of Tanner’s mustard cocktail creations:
Cassis de Dijon
1 oz. Cruzan Blackstrap Rum
¾ oz. Crème de Cassis
½ oz. Lemon Juice
1 Barspoon of Turbinado-Based Simple Syrup
½ Barspoon Dijon Mustard
Shake and strain into a highball glass with crushed ice. Garnish with a lemon wedge and blackberry.
And I have to give snaps to all the evil geniuses involved in mustard mixology: not one suggested a campy mini-frankfurter to garnish the mustard-spiked cocktails.
Image courtesy of the National Mustard Museum.