A recent trend in mixology has been barrel-aged cocktails. This involves mixing cocktails and storing them in oak casks for several weeks to allow the flavors to meld and add a wood character to the drink.
Barrel aging has added a whole new dimension to a mixologist’s bag of tricks, however, there is a drawback. Choosing to barrel-age cocktails means that a bar has to sit on potentially thousands of dollars of inventory. This motivated Newman to start experimenting with ways to achieve that barrel-aged characteristic without having to sit on inventory for weeks and months at a time. Newman eventually looked to a cooking technique that has become a standard in the food industry — sous vide.
Sous vide cocktails (9 of 9)
To close out the seminar, Newman did a side-by-side tasting of the classic gin martini.
Two parts Miller's Over Proof gin, one part Dolin Dry vermouth and two dashes of orange bitters and sous vide aged for 72 hours.
This pairing showed the most stark contrast. The un-sous vided martini still had the sharp bite from the gin while the darker sous vided martini on the left was much mellower and allowed you to better taste the juniper in the gin.
Photo by Ed Morita