Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Bacon-Infused Bourbon

Probably, the most comments I ever got on my facebook account, were from people questioning my sanity when I posted that I was making Bacon-Infused Bourbon for the restaurant.

There were some mixed reactions. I think when I originally heard about this concoction, from Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive-ins and Dives, my initial reaction was similar to my facebook families. A quick revulsion, followed by contemplation and then the epiphany. "This could possibly be the greatest idea, ever!!!"

The actual recipe was found in an article from the New York Magazine, credited to New York City bartender Don Lee from PDT (please don't tell, a widely acclaimed NYC speakeasy).

 We followed the original recipe, though we traded the bourbon they were using, with Knob Creek. a) because the bourbon they listed was unknown to us, b) because Knob Creek was an item we could possibly get help from our liquor distributors to bring the cost down.

The Knob Creek did not work as well as we had anticipated. The high alcohol seemed to cover up the bacon smokiness we were expecting to taste. There was some obvious smokiness added to the Knob, that gave the whiskey a mellower flavor, with some slight sweetness notes, but where was the bacon.

So I brought the bottle home and infused more bacon fat into the 1.5L bottle... 'bout 16 strips (where originally we did 8) So now we sit and wait. See what this concoction provides. If overly bacony, I can always add more bourbon to balance out the flavor (which is easier to do than cooking up bacon over and over again, straining, chilling, scooping out fat and sediment).

Next round I'm going to go with a lighter alcohol, sweeter bourbon that I feel may take on the bacon flavor better; Woodford comes to mind.

You have the recipe, now for the PDT version. Make some at home. Share with friends. They'll be amazed by your bravery and creativeness. After all the posts I received about my own attempts at this unique cocktail, I can pretty much guarantee you'll be the talk of the next dinner party for months to come.

Here's the recipe again for y'all;

You may also be wondering why there's a mini-keg of Heineken in the picture? Well this was my Super Bowl celebratory beer (Really, Sean? No Iron City? Or even Penn Pilsner? At the very least Yuengling?) Well, I always wanted to try one of these things, and Heather isn't fond of too many beer flavors, so while we sat back and watched our Championship winning Steelers bring home another Super Bowl trophy, we shared this mini-keg between us (and between shots of Makers Mark to help rally our boys - Heather, who DOESN'T ever drink whiskey kept right up with me, shot-for-shot... I was so proud of her). I gotta say, I really enjoyed this mini-keg experience. It was fun to have this cute little green guy, hiding out in our fridge, and the beer tasted great. Fresh and refreshing. I'd recommend for anybody who has as much trouble as I do trying to pack a stuffed fridge with a case of bottles for the big game.

Cheers Big Ears!