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Tiki Central Forums Tiki Drinks and Food The Navy Grog, a component study in Mixology
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The Navy Grog, a component study in Mixology
Chip and Andy
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Joined: Jul 13, 2004
Posts: 2207
From: Corner table, Molokai Lounge, Mai-Kai.
Posted: 2007-06-25 8:51 pm   Permalink

Well, I have been poking around through my recipes trying to think of something that would work as a cocktail component study. I kept coming back to a couple of specific recipes, but wasn't quite feeling it.

Then, three different people in three weeks asked me about some version or variation of the Navy Grog and I took it as a sign. So, I give to you....... (cue shakers, dim the lights, sound the ice crushers)

The Navy Grog.

A brief search of recipes on-line turns up several common variations of the Navy Grog, all of which are pretty tasty in their own way. Most recipes agree on Lime and Grapefruit, but some add pineapple, some add orange, a few even get into exotics like guava and passion fruit.

Many of you have your own versions of this recipe (thank you to those that shared, they are all very tasty), and most of them are close if not exactly what the esteemed Beachbum Berry offered as 'the' recipe:

    NAVY GROG
    3/4 ounce fresh lime juice
    3/4 ounce grapefruit juice
    3/4 ounce club soda
    1 ounce honey mix***
    1 ounce white Puerto Rican rum
    1 ounce dark Jamaican rum
    1 ounce Lemon Hart Demerara rum

    Shake well with crushed ice. Pour into double old-fashioned glass.

    ***HONEY MIX: Heat equal parts honey and water until honey dissolves completely (do not boil). Bottle it. It will stay liquid (keep it in the fridge; it'll last a couple weeks).


This recipe is modified with the Honey Mix so that you can work with a shaker instead of a blender. All other components of the drink are per the 'original' recipe.

So.... with the Bum's claim that this is 'the' recipe, and we have no reason to doubt the validity of that claim, lets use this as the basis for our mixology discussion:

To quote Wayne and Garth... "Game On!"







For your entertainment:
http://www.recipezaar.com/99515
http://www.webtender.com/db/drink/2605
http://www.drinksmixer.com/drink5581.html
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Chip and Andy
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Joined: Jul 13, 2004
Posts: 2207
From: Corner table, Molokai Lounge, Mai-Kai.
Posted: 2007-06-25 8:58 pm   Permalink

Lime is the first ingredient for discussion. It has been discussed many times in many threads including this one, this one, and many more that you can find with a quick search.

So, rather than squeeze fruit we have squeezed before, I will ask that you take a moment to search around and read some of the other discussions on limes. Then I would ask that you tell us what kind of limes you have access too and how they compare this year to last? I have noticed here in South Florida that the limes are a bit smaller and a bit drier than last year, maybe there is something to this global-warming stuff.....

Go, discuss, drink.
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Scottes
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Joined: Feb 18, 2007
Posts: 490
From: A Little North Of Boston
Posted: 2007-06-26 11:29 am   Permalink

If we break this down a little...
...Limes have been done, as you mentioned.
...Different club sodas should have very little effect.
...The demerara is specified.
...Grapefruit is grapefruit (is it?)

So what we have to compare is the White & Dark rums.

If we limit to PR White - or close - again this should have very little effect in this drink. There's so many other strong flavors going on that I suspect most whites would disappear.


So as a component study, we have a few dark Jamaicans to compare. If this is it, I would pick a simpler drink, maybe one without a demerara.


I'm not trying to be a spoil-sport, honestly. If you know there's a noticeable difference between 2 formulas please let me know what I'm missing.
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Chip and Andy
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From: Corner table, Molokai Lounge, Mai-Kai.
Posted: 2007-06-26 12:57 pm   Permalink

Well, grapefruit is not really 'just' grapefuit because you have the three major colors (white, pink and red) and then there is the un-ending debate of bottled-vs-fresh.

And, in my reseach I have found the honey to play a surprisingly interesting role in the drink and my local markets have about eight kinds of honey from which to choose.

And then, yes, the rums. Demerera is not the easiest find for everyone, but worth the quest.

But, we are jumping ahead.......

Tonight, for those of you playing along, your homework is grapefruit. Go to the market and get a grapefruit, a white flesh variety if you can find one. If white is not available, try to find pink, or as your last option a Ruby Red. You only need one because an average fruit will yeild eight or more ounces of juice.
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The Gnomon
Grand Member (7 years)  

Joined: May 01, 2007
Posts: 1293
From: MD-DC-VA
Posted: 2007-06-26 1:11 pm   Permalink

OK. How about this?

Didn't Little Eddie Vernon (aka Old Grog), Admiral of Vices (c.1740) introduce a rum and water concoction into the British Royal Navy to reduce drunkeness (crews having been accustomed to drinking its rum ration neat), which was named "Grog" by the disgruntled sailors?

Admiral Edward "Old Grog" Vernon
without his customary grogram cloak



Here's the original recipe from Pusser's site:

Quote:

Thus he issued his infamous Order to Captains No. 349 on August 21, 1740. His order stated that the daily allowance of rum "be every day mixed with the proportion of a quart of water to a half pint of rum, to be mixed in a scuttled butt kept for that purpose, and to be done upon the deck, and in the presence of the Lieutenant of the Watch who is to take particular care to see that the men are not defrauded in having their full allowance of rum... and let those that are good husband men receive extra lime juice and sugar that it be made more palatable to them."



Oar, was Old Grog's grog just "Grog" and the cocktail known as "Navy Grog" a variety of Grog that was invented centuries later.

Oar, regardless of its origins, is it only "Navy" Grog if it is made with British Navy Pusser's Rum, the rum used (exclusively at the time) by the British Royal Navy when Vernon introduced the concoction?

Limes, you say?

What kind of limes did the Limeys use when Grog was invented?

Most likely they were Key limes. Tahiti/Persian limes probably didn't exist then. Though their history is unknown at this point, it is thought that they are a cross between Key limes and Mexican Citron, and probably came into being in the middle of the 19th Century, about 100 years after the invention of Vernon's Grog.

Therefore, I believe that all concoctions with origins predating Persian limes should call for Key limes, only relying on Persians as a substitute.

Arhh! Me hardies! I be more interested in a nautical potion known as Bumbo. Now where be me nutmeg and pomegranates?


 
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Scottes
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Joined: Feb 18, 2007
Posts: 490
From: A Little North Of Boston
Posted: 2007-06-26 1:37 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-06-26 12:57, Chip and Andy wrote:
Well, grapefruit is not really 'just' grapefuit because you have the three major colors (white, pink and red) and then there is the un-ending debate of bottled-vs-fresh


OK, knee-jerk reaction on my part since I would *never* grab pink or red when the recipe called for "grapefruit" and not "pink grapefruit."

But that's part of the fun of this - thinking outside the box, and discovering how different ingredients change flavors.
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Chip and Andy
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Joined: Jul 13, 2004
Posts: 2207
From: Corner table, Molokai Lounge, Mai-Kai.
Posted: 2007-06-27 04:33 am   Permalink

Bumbo is a topic of a different discussion. And if it isn't, maybe it should be. It should generate a lot of discussion considering the fact that our beloved rums all started off as something the workers and slaves made themselves from the scrap and cast-off of a different industry.

But, we are here for the Navy Grog. The origins of the name and how it came to be are better described by Beachbum Berry and Ed Hamilton.

Back to the ingredients..... Did everyone complete their homework?

Grapefruit

Let me start this ingredient by saying I am not a doctor, but I do play on on TV occasionally....

Many of you are on medications that limit or prohibit grapefruit in your diet. For those of you on cholesterol medication the reason you can't do grapefruit is because it inhibits the absorption of the medication into your system. Well, grapefruit is traditionally a breakfast food or drink and most medications of this nature are taken in the morning. Vis-a-vie eating or drinking grapefruit for breakfast would make taking your medications useless therefore this much maligned fruit is verboten.

Now, since most cocktails are taken in the evening hours far, far away from breakfast (no laughing even though it is happy hour somewhere in the world) having one or two cocktails with grapefruit juice in them is probably not going to kill you. Probably. Two Navy Grog's and you are only taking in an ounce and a half of grapefruit juice which is one quarter of a 'typical' serving of six ounces.

Long story short, if you 'occasionally' enjoy yourself a Navy Grog or two you probably won't have any issues with whatever medications you are taking. If you are unsure of just how much or why you can't have grapefruit, consult a doctor or two and see what they say. And you don't necessarily have to tell the doctor that you are surrounding that grapefruit with a protective layer of rum.

So, the ingredient!

Grapefruit

This lovely but much maligned fruit is going to play the role of the 'exotic' component. We already have the lime because we all know that the rum-lime connection is probably one of the best pairings in the world second only to Abbott and Costello. Well, this drink has three full ounces of rum in it and so far we have only added three-quarter ounces of lime. In steps the grapefruit to do two things for our drink: First to help support the lime-rum connection with its citrus component. Second, to provide a unique taste (and aroma) to the drink. When made well, the grapefruit part of this drink is not easily identified and stays somewhat mysteriously on the back of the tongue and keeps you guessing at its presence.

It has been discussed elsewhere about the 'shortage' of white grapefruit this season and the recipe prefers the white variety for its color and lighter overall taste. Pink grapefruit is a bit easier to find and Red grapefruit should be your last option both because of the color and strong taste. But, as we mentioned with the limes, do what you can with what you have.

Fresh is best, always, but not always available. Bottled is pretty good, if you are careful. The one thing I will tell you to absolutely avoid are those tiny little cans of grapefruit juice. They look appealing because of their small size and long shelf life, but for drinks of this nature they are horrible. The biter notes of the juice come out first and really make the final pour a misery to drink.

When looking at bottled options read the ingredients. You want something that is 100% Grapefruit juice. "Duh..." you say. Well, the label may say 100% juice but the ingredient list can include many things like grape or apple juice as filler. And, avoid anything that came from concentrate because it will have been through enough processing to loose much of the exotic taste we are after. Bonus points for anything that claims to be "lightly pasteurized." That is only a marketing gimmick, but it at least shows an interest in the product on the part of the manufacturer.

And now, a few tips for the care and feeding of your larger fruit on the bar:

You need three-quarters of an ounce, but a typical grapefruit will yield eight to ten ounces of juice. Well, the juice stays freshest in the fruit so just cut a wedge out of the fruit (resist the urge to cut it all at once!) and squeeze what you need. If you need more, cut another wedge. When you have acquired the proper amount of juice take a piece of plastic wrap and press into the wedge to completely cover the cut part of the fruit. This will help keep air away from the meat of the fruit and keep it fresher longer.

If you are keeping your fruit in the fridge, pull it out about an hour or so before you need it. You will have to work harder to get the juice from a cold fruit. This goes for all of your citrus fruits.

And finally.... (about time man!)

Discuss. Tell us about your grapefruit. What do you have access to, what does it taste like. Take a bit of grapefruit and a bit of lime and mix them together and see how the flavors are starting to build.


 
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The Mayor Of Exotica
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Joined: Oct 09, 2005
Posts: 392
From: Boston
Posted: 2007-06-27 08:32 am   Permalink

I generally use Grovestand juices in the carton. They are the next best thing to squeezing an actual grapefruit or orange, and they are always fresh, and have an appropriate amount of pulp. When you are entertaining, it is a great time saver, and does not sacrifice flavor.

May I suggest also a discussion of another ingredient, the honey? I have found that different honeys have different flavors, and when I mix with honey, I pour the honey into the shaker which already has the rums in it, and shake before adding anything else. This dissolves the honey in the rums, obviating the need for preparing another mix. My favorite honey for mixing drinks is orange blossom.
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Chip and Andy
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Joined: Jul 13, 2004
Posts: 2207
From: Corner table, Molokai Lounge, Mai-Kai.
Posted: 2007-06-27 2:37 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-06-27 08:32, The Mayor Of Exotica wrote:
I generally use Grovestand juices in the carton. They are the next best thing to squeezing an actual grapefruit or orange, and they are always fresh, and have an appropriate amount of pulp. When you are entertaining, it is a great time saver, and does not sacrifice flavor.



Have you compared it directly to fresh squeezed? Is it really that close (I hope so)? And what is the largest and/or smallest size you can find it in?

I know that grapefruit is not as ellusive a flavor as limes, but being citrus there is just something fresh about, well, fresh....


Quote:

May I suggest also a discussion of another ingredient, the honey?



Not yet, your getting ahead of the game. Soon, but not just yet.


 
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The Mayor Of Exotica
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From: Boston
Posted: 2007-06-28 09:51 am   Permalink

Grovestand comes in quart containers, and while I haven't juiced a grapefruit in a while, it's as close as I can imagine. Pure squeezed juice, no preservatives or sweeteners. But ya gotta used it fast! It'll turn on ya!~
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Chip and Andy
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Posts: 2207
From: Corner table, Molokai Lounge, Mai-Kai.
Posted: 2007-06-28 2:32 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-06-28 09:51, The Mayor Of Exotica wrote:
... But ya gotta used it fast! It'll turn on ya!~




That is a good sign when it comes to cocktails. Fresh doesn't stay that way for very long or else the wouldn't call it fresh.

Anybody want to take a crack at trying to describe the flavor difference between white and red grapefruit?


 
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Chip and Andy
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Joined: Jul 13, 2004
Posts: 2207
From: Corner table, Molokai Lounge, Mai-Kai.
Posted: 2007-07-11 2:34 pm   Permalink

This is one of the better links I have found describing the history and differences of Grapefruit..

http://www.vegparadise.com/highestperch63.html

I still get a smile when I read the scientific name... Citrus X paradisi

As to which color grapefruit in regards to our recipe: White Flesh grapefruit would have been the most common fruit availale about the time this recipe was invented so that should be our target. The color of the fruit is actually less important than the quality of the fruit, specifically: Look for fruit that is large and well shaped, smooth and heavy for its size. If the fruit has a 'nipple' at the stem or flower end it was picked too early and will be bitter (more bitter than other grapefruit).

Now, lets review whats in our glass so far:

Lime (lots of citrus, medium tart, little sweet)
Grapefruit (lots of citrus, medium to strong tart, lots of sweet, lots of aroma)

A heady mix of flavors and aroma, this is going to get nothing but better.

Do please continue to discuss your adventures in Limes and Grapefuit and which varities you can get in your local areas. "Season" is over for grapefruit, but in this modern age you should still be able to find something to use and share.

Next up: Club Soda, also known as Charged Water, and why you shouldn't even think about skipping this ingredient....
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Koolau
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Joined: Sep 23, 2006
Posts: 323
From: Oahu, Hawaii
Posted: 2007-07-11 11:40 pm   Permalink

I never even considered grapefruit variety differences - I've always bought whatever looked the best, and I believe that's always been the red grapefruit. I'll have to try the white.

I generally buy my limes at the local farmers' market - I'll certainly agree that this year they are smaller and dryer than in 2006. The vendors claim they are local Hawaiian limes, but I suspect they are from the mainland, and probably the same Persian limes everybody has at the supermarket. Four or five for $2.00.


 
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GatorRob
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Joined: Aug 20, 2004
Posts: 1771
From: 3 hrs 33 mins to paradise
Posted: 2007-07-12 12:15 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-07-11 23:40, Koolau wrote:
Four or five for $2.00.


Ouch. Nobody said living in paradise was cheap! Limes in my area are going at 8 for $1 right now in the local supermarkets. Out of season, they cost maybe twice that. Fresh key limes are (I think) $3.50 a bag.


 
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telescopes
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Joined: May 06, 2007
Posts: 567
From: Palm Springs
Posted: 2007-07-17 7:38 pm   Permalink

A word about grapefruit. I have the pleasure of having my own grapefruit tree, that with careful picking, yields me grapefruit throughout the entire year. If I pick them early, I have a yellow grapefruit, if I let the sun get to it, it is more ruby red. However, and this is the key point I want to make, when you pick your grapefruit straight from the tree and then juice it immediately afterward, the juice you obtain is nothing like the juice you get from a supermarket grapefruit or from a carton of grapefruit. In fact, it is more like water with a slightly laced flavor of grapefruit. In a word, it is delicous beyond anything I've ever tasted. Not to sweet, not bitter, just simply grapefruit. Now, leave the juice to sit in the refridgerator a day or two and you get your more typical grapefruit citrus bite.

I mention this because we are always talking about "fresh". Here, however, it is important to denote that a truly fresh grapefruit will yield a flavor unlike that of a freshly "squeezed" grapefruit from the supermarket. And it is important to note that it also changes the flavor of your Navy Grog.


 
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