Rum Recipes

Mix This: The Varnish’s Warm Milk Punch with Max Seaman

January 2nd, 2014 — 1:13pm

Milk-Punch_Southern-Cocktails
Last winter we had a really great version of a Warm Milk Punch on the menu. This is adapted from a 1711 recipe by Mary Rockett, which was published in the wonderful book Punch, by David Wondrich (2010). According to Wondrich, it is “the oldest extant recipe for Milk Punch.” The story goes: punch was the mixed drink of choice in the 17th and 18th century. People drank so much of it that the sour nature started causing problems. Adding milk was probably an attempt to “smooth” out the citrus. Since this recipe originated in England, it stands to reason that the hot temperature of the drink helped them through cold winter nights. According to a conversation with Mr. Wondrich, Mary Rockett also happens to be the first commercially published author in Great Britain.

We have significantly modified the original recipe: we call for 2 parts demerara rum and one part cognac rather than all “brandy;” we make an “oleo-saccharum” rather than infusing the liquor with lemon peel; we modify the ratio of sweet and sour; and we increase the amount of milk rather than also adding a lot of water.

The Varnish Warm Milk Punch
-peel 6 lemons. Set aside the fruit for juicing and place the peels in a non-reactive bowl or container. Add 6 teaspoons of superfine sugar and muddle until the sugar starts to pull out the essential oil in the peels. Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours, preferably overnight. After it sits the peels will shrivel and the oils and sugar will combine into a fragrant syrup which in historical punch jargon is called an oleo-saccharum.

In the container with the oleo-saccharum, add:
- 333ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 425ml turbinado simple syrup*
- 500ml Pierre Ferrand 1840 cognac or other good FULL BODIED cognac, preferably 86-94 proof
- 1 liter El Dorado 5yr rum, or other dark, rich DEMERRARA rum

Stir to combine. Then add 1850ml of scalding whole milk. Preferably raw milk, but it HAS to be whole milk. If you are finicky about raw milk, scalding it will have the same effect as pasteurization.

Once you have added the scalding milk to the mixture, stir vigorously until the curds and whey have separated. Strain the whole mixture through cheesecloth or a very fine mesh strainer such as a “chinois.”

Taste for richness and intensity of alcohol. You may want to add a little bit of filtered water if it is too rich or boozy. You may also want to add more simple syrup if the punch is too tart, or to add richness. The amount of sugar the punch needs depends on the richness and sweetness of the milk.

At this point you can serve immediate while warm – just ladle into teacups and top with a bit of freshly grated nutmeg. If you’d like to bottle it, let it sit covered in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours or overnight, until the remaining curds settle to the bottom. Siphon the liquid off the top and bottle. It can sit on the shelf at cellar temperature for a few months. From the bottle, pour into a saucepan, heat, and serve in teacups topped with nutmeg. Don’t over-heat, you will boil off the alcohol. (you can also serve it cold and it’s quite good) Refrigerate after opening.

*for turbinado simple syrup, dissolve 500g turbinado sugar (“sugar in the raw”) into 750ml hot water

Max Seaman, The Varnish, General Manager

Mix This: Delicious Thanksgiving Season Pairings with Seven Grand DTLA’s own Andrew Abrahamson

November 7th, 2013 — 12:49pm

Hot Buttered Rumskey
With the recent time change, and Fall officially upon us, there is a need to re access the bar around you and the spirits atop it and prepare for the pies and flavors ahead. We have a couple favorites here at Seven Grand that we love to recommend, and think will fit perfectly with most dishes and moods you are going to be indulging in this season.

Not the cheapest, but one that has to be mentioned, Angel’s Envy Rye is the final release from Lincoln Henderson. He took a well known Rye made in Indiana and made it completely his own by finishing it off in Oak Barrels that were first filled with Cognac in France, and then finished off with Rum in the Caribbean. There is an amazing and unique Graham Cracker and warm Cinnamon profile that jumps out right away, with a huge Chocolate and Caramel finish that keeps going and creates a fullness to this Whiskey that is really not to be found anywhere else. At least not one with the depth and richness that this Rye packs. It’ll pair perfectly with any dessert or fire you’ll come across this Fall.

A little bit less of a hit on the wallet, Woodford Reserve Double Oaked is as smooth as a saxophone, and fits perfectly on a shelf this time of year. To add an additional layer to the normally Woody and Spicy Woodford Reserve, Master Distiller Chris Morris re barrels the Whiskey before bottling in a Barrel with a long toast, but not any char, resulting in much sweeter flavors than normal. This Bourbon explodes with Butterscotch, Toffee and rich Molasses but is balanced out by a beautiful Clove spiciness and mellow Vanilla finish. A real sipper that is great just the way it is in your favorite glass.

For a real bargain around this time of year (you can buy two, and give someone an early gift, right?) an easy suggestion is Heaven Hill’s secret gem, Old Fitzgerald 12 Years Old. In a category dominated by Maker’s Mark, Wheated Bourbons are in the midst of a huge surge in popularity compared to the few types you will find on shelves. No chance you are going to get your hand’s on Pappy van Winkle this year? No worries, Old Fitz is made by a true Master with a similar recipe. The 12 Year Old is the star of Heaven Hill’s line, and not to be missed. All the Butter, Toffee and Caramel notes of Wheated Bourbon are here, with a mellow and sweet Vanilla Custard finish. Enjoy it and then enjoy it again.

But if you’d prefer to throw caution to the wind, go ahead and buy yourself a bottle Bowmore The Devil’s Casks, because you deserve it right? It may only be a 10 Year Old Single Malt Scotch, but it’s extremely limited, and as good as it gets. Aged 100% in 1st Fill Sherry Casks, the over use of that wood seems to somehow pull the best from the normally perfectly balanced Isla. Huge Dark Fruit and Spicy Hot Chocolate are at odds with the Oily Smoke and Tobacco, and together lead to a finish that lasts long into the next sip. We were lucky enough to try some during a trip to Scotland recently, and it stood out among the many great Whisky’s we drank during the two weeks as one of the best we had. It just came to us here in California, and is worth every dollar for a bottle.

Should you decide to mix a drink instead, try this recipe from our Winter menu here at Seven Grand:

Hot Buttered RumSkey
- 1oz Rich Bourbon (Woodford Reserve)
- 1oz Dark Rum (Zaya)
- 1 Small Spoon Butter
- 1 Large Spoon Brown Sugar (You can’t use too much, add until it’s to your liking)
- Piping Hot Water

And all the ingredients into a mug and stir slowly to melt the sugar and butter. Top with grated cinnamon and enjoy.

This cocktail is a play on the very rich and classic Hot Buttered Rum, with the heat opening up the Whiskey and releasing the savory qualities of the spirit. It is as warming a cocktail as you can have. Make sure the water is boiling when added.

Cheers and Sláinte from Seven Grand!

Caña Rum Bar’s Natural Daiquiri

March 19th, 2013 — 1:52pm

Caña Rum Bar’s Allan Katz shows us how to make their signature Natural Daiquiri

Mix This: The Suburban with Seven Grand’s Dustin Newsome!

March 7th, 2013 — 11:07am


The Suburban
- 1 1/2 oz. Rye Whiskey
- 1/2 oz. Port
- 1/2 oz. Dark Rum
- 1 dash Angostura
- 1 dash orange bitters

Build in old fashioned glass with ice, garnish with orange peel.

This dark horse classic strikes your palate like a velvet sledge hammer with it’s robust, yet soft and unusual ingredient line up.  According to the ‘Old Waldorf-Astoria bar book’, this cocktail was invented there to celebrate James R. Keene, whose stable was legendary in the Suburban Handicap in Brooklyn’s Sheepshead Bay track in 1884.

Not only is this Noir destroyer a historical mating for Seven Grands rich wood texture and dark billeted leather, it drinks like our rich decor feels.

Bartenders note: Try creating an interesting variation by substituting sherry for the port.

Dustin Newsome
Seven Grand, Head Barman

I Art U DTLA and Golden Gopher present Artist Mark Melchoir

September 12th, 2012 — 10:50am

Post Art Walk come on into Golden Gopher for an epic art show.  I Art U DTLA along with Golden Gopher present artist Mark Melchoir with some musical help by DJ Mike Turski.  Art, beer, booze and music.  What more could you want?  Nothing!