Saturday, October 3, 2009

STARAYA MODNAYA or Old Fashioned

For my second video as part of the Zagat Bartenders series, I turn to yet another twist on a classic. This one is damn near blasphemous: An Old Fashioned Made With Vodka!

See the video here: STARAYA MODNAYA

Because Vodka's best qualities are viscosity, mouthfeel, and burn, it is a spirit that does well when given the Sazerac Treatment, which, for our purposes, is simply the technique of first rinsing a chilled glass with a given a second spirit, generally a liqueur, in order to lace it through the over all flavor of the drink.

In this case, Kummel, a liqueur made from Caraway seeds with origins in Russia and Germany, is our rinsing spirit. Combined with the Muddled Dill, the dill garnish, and the Kummel rinse, Vodka becomes the perfect vehicle for facilitating these otherwise difficult to manage herbal flavors.

Here is the complete recipe:
In a mixing glass:
2 dashes Angostura Bitters
1 small sprig of fresh dill
1 sugar cube
1 dash seltzer
Muddle the above ingredients into a paste

2 1/2 oz. Russian Standard Platinum Vodka
Fill with cracked ice
Stir until "Siberian chill" is reached (20 seconds should do)
Strain into a chilled Kummel-rinsed rocks glass
Add 1 large block of ice
Garnish with a spray of oil from the zest of a lemon and a small sprig of fresh dill on top

Na Zdorovie!

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