If you throw together a cocktail at home and aren’t thrilled with the result, take a tip from the kitchen. Rather than tossing it out and starting over, take a sip of your experimental concoction and ponder what it needs.
When making food, and your dish needs something, there’s a simple system:
- Bland? Add salt, or if that isn’t it, add more of the herbs and spices already in use.
- Lacking Depth? Up the umami with Worcestershire or soy sauce, anchovies, sun dried tomatoes or tomato paste.
- Need acid? A squeeze of lemon juice, or splash of vinegar.
- Too bitter? Add sugar, honey or maple syrup
- Not rich enough? Add butter or cream.
For a cocktail, it’s about the same:
- Too weak or strong? Add more spirits or mixers (Obvious, I know).
- Lacking depth? Add a dash of bitters.
- Need acid? A squirt of lemon or lime juice.
- Too bitter? Add simple syrup, agave or maple syrup.
- Not rich enough? fruit liqueurs like Cherry Heering and Chambord might give you what you seek. Butter, probably won’t help, but bacon might!