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Go Back   Rum Lovers @ the Ministry of Rum > Cocktails and Food > Mixers, Water, Ice and Glasses
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Mixers, Water, Ice and Glasses

All of the ingredients in a cocktail contribute to the experience.


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Old 11-09-2009, 08:22 PM   #1
malice
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Default Where to start? - drink suggestions?

I love to try new cocktails (especially tiki style) and now that i have 20+ rums, shelves of other alcohol, and the desire to run out and buy some fresh fruits and syrups, where do I even start? I have a grocery list of things to buy/make which includes Orgeat, Simple Syrup, Limes, Coco Lopez, pineapple juice, and to try to find Clement VSOP and Clement Creole Shrubb per Rum Dood's Mai Tai suggestions, but I may have some troubles obtaining it all. Is there a place online where I can plug in all the alcohol and ingredients I have and have access to and it will spit out drink suggestions?
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:25 PM   #2
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Planters Punch works for me.
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:34 PM   #3
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To clarify, I am thinking that instead of going out and buying a bunch of things to try cocktails, that I might want to start with trying ones that I can make with what I have. I don't have a Demerara rum (yet!) or I could probably make a Planter's Punch per the ingredient list at http://www.ministryofrum.com/rumcock.php

I do love a good Planter's Punch - best ones I have had were in the later afternoons at the Harbour Lounge on Harbour Island in the Bahamas. I watched a lot of sunsets there.
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Old 11-09-2009, 11:07 PM   #4
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http://www.drinksmixer.com/dusers/lo...return=cabinet

The scally wags use to have this freely accessible but now they make you have an account and sign in. Thought I'd pass it along, I haven't used it in years though...
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Old 11-10-2009, 12:43 PM   #5
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Thanks. I checked it out, but like all the others that I have looked at, it doesn't get very specific about spirits. I am looking for specifics like if I have Orgeat, Clemont Creole Shrubb, Simple Syrup, Lime juice, Appleton Estate 12 Year Old, and Clement VSOP, I can make "Rumdood's 2009 Best Rum Combo Mai Tai." Obviously this would take a lot of time to add all the ingredients, spirits, and cocktails out there, but the back end logic behind making something like this would be super simple. If this doesn't already exist, I would be surprised. If this doesn't already exist, I am tempted to try and do something about that...
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Old 11-10-2009, 02:39 PM   #6
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If it exists Malice I haven't heard about it. I have not looked for it though as I tend to be more of a simple cocktail guy.
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Old 11-10-2009, 03:17 PM   #7
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The closest you're likely to get these days is probably Ted Haigh's CocktailDB online, where you can plug in ingredients and it will give you suggested recipes.

There are numerous projects in the works to give you exactly what you're looking for, but they aren't there yet. The issue with most of the projects is one of generating GOOD data and ensuring its quality. Some sites allow almost anyone to add drinks to them, so you end up with lots of undrinkable swill. Others don't have enough contributors, so lots of good drinks or ingredients are left out.

Obviously your only choice is to only make drinks from my site.

In all seriousness, making and drinking cocktails is about exploration. It's about experimentation, taking chances, and learning from others.

I'd recommend picking up a copy of Wayne Curtis' book, "and A Bottle of Rum" and starting there. It's full of great history, and great drinks to get you started.

If tiki is really your thing, grab any of Jeff "Beachbum" Berry's books (or wait for his newest one).

Regardless of the route you choose, start simple and build from there. Find a drink you like with one or two of the rums and mixers you have now, and once you feel you've got that drink mastered, start tweaking it.

Substitute out the Jamaican rum in a Mai Tai for a demerara that you've had sitting on your shelf for something else. See if it works.

Make a caipirissima instead of a caipirinha.

Make a daiquiri with that smokey, aged rum that you figured you'd only use in Rum Old Fashioneds.

Oh, and keep reading my blog because my ego needs the boost.
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Old 11-10-2009, 03:19 PM   #8
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Oh, and I really can't take credit for the Mai Tai that I crowned as my favorite. I may have stumbled upon it partially on my own, but Jeff Berry had stumbled (or would it be BUMbled in his case?) into that particular match long before I did.
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Old 11-10-2009, 06:08 PM   #9
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Thanks for the tips Dood!

The problems with "start simple" is everything I come across seems to require me to search out some other ingredient, which I am fine doing, but I am interested in trying things that I can with the items I have. I can't find any recipes for things that I want to try with the things that I have. It seems like I need to pick up a bottle of demerara no matter what I do next.

I have the following on their way:
Beachbum Berry's Grog Log - Jeff Berry
Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails: From the Alamagoozlum to the Zombie 100 Rediscovered Recipes and the Stories Behind Them - Ted Haigh
And a Bottle of Rum: A History of the New World in Ten Cocktails - Wayne Curtis

Amusingly, I have a bottle of Leblon Cachaca so I could make a Caipirinha, but I have to admit, after trying Cachaca neat, I am hesitant to make a drink with that being the cornerstone. I will get around to it though for sure.

I will absolutely keep reading your blog. I find it quite approachable. The 'Rum 101: How To Get Started With Rum' was very informative and 'A Month of Mai Tais' was a lot of fun. Keep 'em coming!
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Old 11-11-2009, 01:08 PM   #10
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You're doing what I've taken to calling "Rabbit Holing."

You travel down one rabbit hole, only to discover more tunnels at every level.

You've got some great books coming to you. Ted's book is a real treasure - though be careful, it's going to get you buying gin and whiskey and all sorts of odd liqueurs and the next thing you know you'll have an entire house full of booze and end up spending up to 30 minutes standing in a room trying to decide what to drink. Not that that ever happens to me. Ehem.
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