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Tiki Central Forums » » Tiki Drinks and Food » » Orange Liquor Throwdown Challenge
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Orange Liquor Throwdown Challenge
Brandomoai
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 05, 2008
Posts: 321
From: Edmonton, AB, Canada
Posted: 2013-01-10 4:44 pm   Permalink

That stuff just hit our marketplace! It's only available at one place so far and I suspect it's going to be overpriced. But it just got a shout out in this month's Imbibe, so it's gotta' be good! I think I'm going to have to splurge...

 
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TraderPeg
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Aug 10, 2006
Posts: 91
From: Haunted Hudson Valley
Posted: 2013-01-20 09:14 am   Permalink

I just grabbed this yesterday at Viscount in Wappingers, NY. I bought it mostly on the strength of David Wondrich's involvement with its development. I would say it has a more pronounced orange note; it worked well in the Knickerbocker I shook (old-timey recipe almost identical to a Mai Tai except raspberry replaces the orgeat).

It was $28.99.


 
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JimLahey
Member

Joined: Nov 28, 2012
Posts: 2
Posted: 2013-01-21 9:12 pm   Permalink

No love for Creole Shrubb ?

 
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Hale Tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 19, 2004
Posts: 1798
From: Pittsburgh
Posted: 2013-01-22 06:33 am   Permalink

Lots of love for Clement Creole. I haven't gone through the thread, but I've had it in many drinks, and although it's quite costly, it's a fantastic booze, and really adds to the complexity of a well made mai tai or any other drink.

They use it in the Tikiphile Mai Tai at the Grass Skirt Tiki Room.


 
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AceExplorer
Grand Member (2 years)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2008
Posts: 633
From: Deep in the Jacksonville Florida jungle.
Posted: 2013-01-22 08:02 am   Permalink

Looks like it's not a whole lot more costly than the other fine spirits we talk about here. I just found it in stock at my local "huge" liquor store for 29.99 for a 750ml bottle. I'll have to give it a try, I see that it has pretty good reviews online.
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Rum Balls
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Oct 04, 2004
Posts: 860
From: Portland, OR
Posted: 2013-01-23 04:52 am   Permalink

Plenty of love from me for the Creole Shrubb, especially when I snagged it for $14 a few years ago here in Oregon! I use it when I'm making myself a top-shelf Mai Tai. Haven't tried the Pierre Ferrand yet, but looking forward to it from all the raves I see and hear.
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TraderPeg
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Aug 10, 2006
Posts: 91
From: Haunted Hudson Valley
Posted: 2013-01-26 09:57 am   Permalink

I like the Clement Creole Shrub, too, tend to hoard it.

 
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heylownine
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Oct 05, 2008
Posts: 598
From: Agoura Hills, CA
Posted: 2013-03-03 10:21 pm   Permalink

I finally picked up a bottle of the Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao this weekend. I'm trying it right now in a Mai Tai along with some Smith & Cross and Depaz Agricole. Early returns are positive. I also served it to a few others this weekend and received no complaints.

True to its name, as soon as you smell this Curaçao you notice how dry it is. Sometime over the next week or so I'm going to try and sit down and compare it to my 2 standards: Creole Shrubb and Senior Curaçao (both pretty different in their own right).

kevin

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Little fragrant Tiare
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Joined: Oct 12, 2007
Posts: 198
Posted: 2013-03-05 03:56 am   Permalink

I really like Pierre Ferrand Dry Curacao, i tried it the first time at Tales at their session. I haven`t had a chance to try the Senior´s Curacao since it´s not sold outside of the US but i hope to try it some day.

Before i got the Ferrand´s i used Cointreau in somewhat smaller amount in my Mai Tai`s due to i find it quite strong.

[ This Message was edited by: Little fragrant Tiare 2013-03-05 03:57 ]


 
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CincyTikiCraig
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Joined: Mar 31, 2009
Posts: 349
From: Cincinnati, Ohio USA
Posted: 2013-03-05 7:57 pm   Permalink

Ferrand Dry Curaçao is at the top of my list to try. heylownine, I would really like to know how it works in your Mai Tai. I switched to Marie Brizard Orange Curaçao last year when the brand became available in my area, and I'm making the best Mai Tai's ever.


 
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heylownine
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Oct 05, 2008
Posts: 598
From: Agoura Hills, CA
Posted: 2013-03-10 12:16 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2013-03-05 19:57, CincyTikiCraig wrote:
Ferrand Dry Curaçao is at the top of my list to try. heylownine, I would really like to know how it works in your Mai Tai. I switched to Marie Brizard Orange Curaçao last year when the brand became available in my area, and I'm making the best Mai Tai's ever.




Trying to do the comparison today...if not today then Monday. The bottle is on my counter taunting me...

kevin
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heylownine
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Oct 05, 2008
Posts: 598
From: Agoura Hills, CA
Posted: 2013-03-11 12:26 am   Permalink

Ok, I don't want to bury the lede (or lead, if you prefer): Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao has taken the place of Senior Curaçao as my house Curaçao for a Mai Tai.

How did I get there? In my home bar I typically stock Senior Curaçao and Creole Shrubb. I also have other curaçaos for mixing in larger quantities (or for 5th/6th drinks). For this post, I've not pitted Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao against Creole Shrubb*. It's simply Senior Curaçao vs. Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao. I'll compare it to the Shrubb in another post.

Served neat and side-by-side, the differences between the 2 are obvious. The Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao is a much lighter color, almost golden, in the glass. It smells of fresh orange peel. The Senior Curaçao is a brighter orange in the glass and has a strong scent of, primarily, orange soda. Don't let that discourage you; it merely has a pronounced orange scent, mixed with sugar. I'm quite sure it's as intended. Senior Curaçao's taste is a thick orange taste with little to no finish. It's sweeter than the Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao, but not cloying. While I would not drink it neat, it's a good curaçao, and it still has a home in my bar. Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao is true to it's name: dry, orange, and bright. It has a subtle, slow, but lingering finish that lingers on the back of the throat. Perhaps this is attributable to it being 80 proof, compared to 62 for the Senior.

So look, that's great and all, but none of us are coming here to drink curaçao straight. How does it work in a Mai Tai?

I made 2 (to start) Mai Tais, exactly the same except for the curaçao. Mai Tai recipes are like opinions**, and here's the one I used tonight, knowing what I was trying to test (no need to go top shelf):

1 oz Appleton V/X
1 oz Saint James Royal Ambre
3/4 oz lime juice
1/2 oz curaçao
1/2 oz homemade orgeat
1/4 oz simply syrup (approximately 1.5-1)

Shake with ice, strain into a double old-fashioned filled with crushed ice. Garnish with mint.

I made the 2 cocktails at the same time to compare them side-by-side.

Starting with the Senior, the aroma was primarily mint, as expected. The orange flavor was near the front, mixed with the agricole. The orgeat was very subtle and in the background. The cocktail was quite good, but with a thin mouthfeel. The Appleton faded into the background. I got the feeling as I tasted it that Senior Curaçao was made to mingle with more assertive rums.

The Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao Mai Tai had the same nose (mint garnish doing its job there) but right off the bat I thought this version was more boozy and the orange flavor was more subtle. This in turn allowed the distinct characteristics of the rums to stand out more. I sensed the Appleton this time, as opposed to the Senior version. The cocktail was better balanced overall, as the orange was dialed down. My conclusion was that depending on the rums selected for a Mai Tai, this may be a better choice, but not always. I thought that in the presence of a stronger pair of rums, the Senior would still stand out by virtue of holding its own via the stronger orange flavor. How would Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao fair against rums like Smith & Cross, JM, and Neisson?

Assumptions are bad. Almost as bad as a 3rd Mai Tai test on a Sunday night. So naturally I next tried a Mai Tai that used rums with a much stronger profile alongside the Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao. Recipe 3 swapped Smith & Cross in for the Appleton V/X and Rhum Barbancourt 8 year in place of the Saint James Royal Ambre. Right off the bat, the Smith & Cross stood alongside the mint and made itself known on aroma alone. This carried over to the first sip, where again the Smith & Cross asserted itself right up front. But it then gave way to the curaçao, orgeat, and lime. I was wrong about the Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao's ability to hold up to strong rums, it wasn't lost at all and again helped balance the overall cocktail. The finish was primarily Barbancourt, lingering a bit and leaving a warm impression. I'd make this version again (and again) am very interested to try it with some stronger agricoles.

I really like the Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao and plan to keep it in stock at home as much as possible.

kevin

* I'm not sure it's a direct comparison anyway, given that Creole Shrubb isn't, by definition, a curaçao product. But you can argue that either way I suppose.

** While the individual rums vary, I almost always base a Mai Tai with 1 oz Jamaican rum and I oz Martinique rum.
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Little fragrant Tiare
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 12, 2007
Posts: 198
Posted: 2013-03-11 05:45 am   Permalink

Interesting post! did you go to their session at the Tales last year when they distilled their dry curacao on stage?

I made an outstanding and very strong Mai Tai last night with Ferrand dry Curacao and 1 oz Caroni -97 single barrel rum and 1 oz Clèment VSOP. It was strong, rummy and oh so good on a sunday evening.-)
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Hale Tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 19, 2004
Posts: 1798
From: Pittsburgh
Posted: 2013-03-11 09:28 am   Permalink

I'll never go back to anything else, to be frank.
I've had it with these combos:
Flora de Cana & Smith & Cross
Zaya & Ron Matusalem
Eldorado 12yr & Smith & Cross
Appleton Reserve & Coruba

And I have yet to be disappointed. I know this doesn't add much, but it's really worth checking out if you haven't already.


 
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heylownine
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Oct 05, 2008
Posts: 598
From: Agoura Hills, CA
Posted: 2013-03-11 6:54 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2013-03-11 05:45, Little fragrant Tiare wrote:
Interesting post! did you go to their session at the Tales last year when they distilled their dry curacao on stage?

I made an outstanding and very strong Mai Tai last night with Ferrand dry Curacao and 1 oz Caroni -97 single barrel rum and 1 oz Clèment VSOP. It was strong, rummy and oh so good on a sunday evening.-)




Thanks! I've never been to Tales, but I hope to go someday. July is the hardest time to chat with cocktail writers if you don't go to Tales...I always wish I was there.

I've used the Clement VSOP with Appleton 12 for a really good Mai Tai. I find VSOP is a less-assertive agricole, so there's a nice mellow balance to it.

kevin

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if it's not a little complicated, it's probably not worth it.
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