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Pegu Variant: The Juniper Club Cocktail

Pegu Variant: The Juniper Club Cocktail

Part of the original charter I set for myself when I started the Pegu Blog was to be the searcher and central depository of all Pegu knowledge and discussion on the Web. Boy, am I falling down on the job when my good buddy, Weblog Award Nominee™ Jay at Oh Gosh!, managed to put up a post about not one, but two Pegu variants back in October, and I missed it until now.

juniper-club-cocktail-2
Image stolen from Oh Gosh!

The variants are the Juniper Club and the Pendennis Club. The Pendennis Club is a variant of a variant, and hardly close enough to still look much like a Pegu. It also uses apricot brandy, which I’m not much for, so I skipped playing with it. It does have an awesome name, though.
Last year, when I got my hands on my first bottle of Peychaud’s Bitters, I tried using it as a substitute for the standard Angustora. Little did I know that there was already such a variant out there, the Juniper Club. I simply used four or five dashes of Peychaud’s in a standard Pegu recipe. The results were a pink drink that was just, um, dull. Once I read the Juniper Club at Jay’s, I elected to give it another run at it. Here’s the recipe:

JUNIPER CLUB COCKTAIL

  • 1½ oz dry gin
  • ½ oz lime juice
  • ⅓ oz Cointreau
  • 1 bar-spoon Peychaud’s bitters
  • ½ bar-spoon sugar syrup

Shake all ingredients with ice and fine-strain in to a cocktail glass. Garnish with a wedge of lime.

I mixed this up and it smells wonderful. I tasted it and it is much better than my own, independent experiment.
But it still is not to my taste. The problem begins and ends with the Peychaud’s. It has a unique, whole-mouth taste experience that I find really interesting, but which I don’t find I like. I know some folks love Peychaud’s and it’s flavor, but I’m not that guy. It has a time-traveling aftertaste. By that I mean you can taste the aftertaste before you taste the best flavors the bitters provides, as well as after you taste them. There is something there that fights to really bring out the Gin-Cointreau-Lime Trinity, but I just don’t see it winning. That said, if you are a Sazerac guy, this might be the Pegu descendant for you.


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