Barrel-Aged Cocktails Begin at Max Fish

While it will take about 3 months for the cocktail to finish, we started to make it this week.  Yes, that’s a 3 month window of production.  Sounds like a long time to wait for a drink? Not really once you taste the results.

The Barrel-Aged Cocktail has been making it way around the country and is now firmly in Connecticut at the Max Restaurant Group.  We started this week with a variation on the Manhattan by blending Hudson White Corn Whiskey from New York’s Hudson Valley with Doling Dry Vermouth from France and just a touch of Regan’s Orange Bitters from Louisiana.  We didn’t make just one drink, though – we made a barrel full of it – 5 gallons to be precise.  This mixture is taking its time mellowing and coming together in an oak barrel that previously held whiskey from Hudson Distillery.  The idea is that over the next few months the cocktail’s elements will have the opportunity to really meld with each other, pickup some color and sweet vanilla flavors from the barrel and be affected by the slow integration of oxygen – an element typically not found in cocktails.

The end result will be a smooth and mellow Manhattan that is easy to drink and delicious to sip.  We plan to make it available early to mid-June, or when the drink is ready.

We will be expanding this concept at Max Fish, as well as introducing it at Trumbull Kitchen and Max Oyster Bar.  We are planning on doing a tasting event featuring all the variations we mix up sometime in June. Perhaps you can let us know which are the best combinations??

 

Big Cocktail Dinner Tonight at Max Fish

Maxologist Dave Bouchard Building the Cocktails

Tonight Dave Bouchard and Dave Sellers presented a great dinner featuring some innovative cocktails based on classic styles and food pairings to match.  Despite (slightly off)weather we had over 40 people venture out to experience this dinner and enjoy the creative process happening at Fish.  Dave Bouchard has created a serious craft cocktail culture with his staff and they are creating delicious cocktails, as was on display for dinner tonight.  Here is the lineup that we featured:

Chef Dave Sellers Doing What He Does Best

Aperitif

Gougeres / Trout mousse / caviar

Kir Royal-classic sparkler with a twist

Massenez de Dijon, fresh orange, Prosecco, lemon oil

Daiquiri

Cuban Wedding shrimp / Jumbo shrimp / myers rum / orange juice / jalapeño

Lemon Thyme-the original daiquiri, elevated; savory and refreshing

Puerto Rican white rum, lemon-thyme syrup, citrus, Jamaican dark rum

Martini

Thai steamed red snapper / tamarind / ginger / lemongrass

Tamarind Kiss-exotic but familiar; each sip invites another

Ginger infusion, tamarind and citrus, notes of vanilla

Manhattan

Rye glazed “bacon” / roast pork tenderloin / stone ground grits

Green Point-smooth, spicy and convincing

Old Overholt rye, Yellow Chartreuse, Punt e Mes

Flip

Marcona almond cake / sherry sabayon

Pedro Ximinez-rich, creamy and complex

Pedro Ximinez sherry, orgeat, egg, nutmeg

Ilegal Mezcal Now at Max Fish

We tasted the Ilegal Mezcals this week and decided that these were must haves for our bar.  The style of the mezcal is much different than its cousin Tequila as the agave is usually roasted in stone lined pits where the smoke from the charcoal is allowed to mingle and add to the flavor of the final beverage.  Ilegal is a great brand and we will be offering the three styles (Blanco, Reposado and Anejo) either individually or in a flight of three.

Check the atatched video for a great discussion and explanation on the Ilegal Mezcals.

Randall Grahm at Max Downtown Tonight

Tonight was another enticing evening at Max Downtown with a great culinary adventure based around the wines of Bonny Doon Vineyard from California.  Owner Randall Grahm has made a few appearances over the years at Max’s, and tonight added another chapter in this adventure as he discussed and amused guests with his fabulous wines and Max’s cuisine.  Randall is as lively as ever and we really enjoyed the wines, most focusing on Rhone varietals but with a few side-trips to Spain and other regions.  Tasty food pairing wines all the way.  Great stuff…Thanks Randall!

New Batches of Brewtus Maximus Pale Ale

A double batch of Bretwus Maximus was created this morning starting at 4am.  We will have these in house in about three weeks – fresh as can be.  The smell of the hops as they are going in the kettle is delightfully spicy, herbal and fruity all together,  Mixed with the sweet, malty aromas of the grain – and you have beer heaven.

Click here to see a short video: Brewtus Maximus

Jean Trimbach at Max Oyster Bar Next Week

While you are still deciding what to do for Valentine’s Day (we suggest a visit to one of our locations with your favorite person) consider attending this great dinner next week with one of our favorite wine producers, Jean Trimbach.

The Trimbach family has been making wine in Alsace since 1626, and we are very fortunate to have Jean Trimbach (pictured on  the left) and his family’s wines at the Oyster Bar for this dinner.  We will be featuring the classic wines of Trimbach along with some very special selections from their Grand Cru sites and Late Harvest sweet wines.  Executive Chef Scott Miller has prepared a very intriguing menu based in large part on ingredients found in and around Connecticut.  Join us for what should be a culinary winter highlight.

Special Valentine’s Day Cocktails at Max’s

All of our MAXologists have been working hard to create new and innovative cocktails to feature over the next few days leading up to Valentine’s Day. Each cocktail has a unique style created by the local bartenders at each of our locations, and most of them will be featuring Mionetto Prosecco, a lovely sparkling wine from Italy, as the main ingredient. Loads of fresh ingredients from raspberries to edible orchids are being used. Make your reservations today or just stop by one of our taverns for a great, original cocktail, such as Mike Mills’ “Downtown Love” from Max Downtown in Hartford.