I still have a little bit of the Seville sour orange juice left so I thought I would sit down and try it in a drink. Having liked the Gilroy cocktail from the savoy cocktail book and having parodied it many times I thought that would be another good place to begin.
1 oz. gin (seagram’s cask aged distiller’s reserve)
1 oz. cherry heering
.5 oz. dry vermouth (M&R)
.5 oz. sour orange juice (the real stuff)
2 dashes peychauds bitters. (orange bitters seemed redundent)
This isn’t working for me and I think I need to add more acid. The Gilroy is already a low acid cocktail but using the lower acid orange juice over lemon juice puts it just over the tipping point of cloying. Adding another half ounce of the orange juice saves the drink and really seems to bring into balance some of the flavor contrasts.
For my second cocktail I thought I’d explore the elusive Amer Picon with the equally elusive sour orange juice.
2 oz. st. james ambre
1 oz. sour orange juice
.5 oz. amer picon (21 proof version)
scant half teaspoon of turbinado sugar
dash of peychaud’s bitters
I liked this drink a lot but probably not because of the special ingredients. More or less because St. James is good for the human condition and it is lately my favorite spirit. I get beautiful flavor contrast from the orange peel of the Picon and the orange juice of the acid versus the dirt and earth spicy character of the rum. The acid to sugar structure is perfect and the bitter elements are subliminal. You don’t exactly know if they are there but you’d miss them if they were gone. All in all I think the rum makes the drink. If you used something other than Amer Picon paired with an over the top cocktail bitter you’d get a stunning drink from the St. James sour orange combo.