Archives for the month of: November, 2012

Another Shrub Recipe!

This particular shrub I have decided to refer to as a light shrub, in that the process involves making a flavoured water (some people in the UK and British Colonies, and in the Far East would call this “tea” but I associate that with beer at the … wait, I almost gave away my favorite cold tea spot. Sorry to all the cops reading this, you won’t catch an adult imbibing legal products at an hour deemed unlawful by the province of Ontario, not this time) and souring it with vinegar. As opposed to a heavy shrub which is more my method, that involves taking a fruit or root or spice and boiling it in vinegar, then adding a smaller measure of sugar.

So if you weren’t aware, I posted one of these recipes awhile ago before my bar tour stop at La Carnita (I’m not doing a blog entry for that one. It  just happened too long ago and I can’t really remember it well enough to do it justice. Just go eat and drink at there, great people doing the right thing, with a lot of heart and a little luck) and a bunch of people contacted me to tell me it was a good one, This particular shrub was for a competition that my mentor and BFF Christina Kuypers was invited to by the Ontario Culinary and Tourism Association. The drink fucking rules so we put it on the list for the GwaiLo Popup as well (The drink is called a Normandier, if you’re curious). Here goes:

1. Put on your Halloween playlist, set to shuffle. It’s spookier that way.. (I made this shrub a few weeks ago, sorry I have been ignoring my blog)

2. Prep your allspice, ginger, cloves, anise and cinnamon


Theme from Psycho
Theme from The Shining
Welcome To My Nightmare- Alice Cooper
Sound Effects- Footsteps
20 Eyes- Misfits
Sound Effects- Man Falling off a cliff

3. Measure out your water

Master Of Puppets- Apocalyptica

4. Add your spices to your water and bring to a boil.
Running With The Devil- Van Halen (not Van Hagar)
Sound Effects- Torture Chamber
Ressurection Waltz (Hellraiser Score)
Halloween- The Misfits


5. Once boiled, simmer spices and water for about 30 minutes
N.I.B.- Black Sabbath
Hallowed Be Thy Name- Cradle Of Filth
Devil Went Down To Georgia- Charlie Daniels
Hells Bells- AC/DC
Sound Effects- Haunted Forest
Satan is Real- Hank III

666. Kill! The heat.

There is no point in keeping the playlist thing going while you wait for it to cool. I suggest you read either Treat Me LIke Dirt or Perfect Youth. Both are amazing historically questionable accounts of toronto/canadian punk rock. I am about 150 pages into both. Scatterbrain.

Speaking of which while I waited for mine to cool, I went and worked at the Toronto Underground Market with my pals from Tromba Tequila. I made something like 900 drinks in 2 hours or so.


When I got home Saturday Night Live was on and Bill Heder was really funny.

7. Strain out all the spices and ginger. Keep them, you’re gonna need them. Does ginger count as a spice?


8. Add apple cider vinegar and sugar. Stir until you get a velvety look. Glossy, like, well, like a pot full of sugar, vinegar and “tea”. Here I suggest you take off your shirt, because sometimes you splash on yourself, even when you are really careful and you wouldn’t want to wreck your Drunk Hussy shirt. Also, shirts are for chumps. (Does anyone have fingers that fit in these bottles?)



9. Now add half of your spices to a jar (or 3 depending on how much of the shrub you need, we needed like 4.3 litres for this comp). Let the jar(s) sit in the fridge (or sealed outdoors if you have a space safe from raccoons and the low is around 4 degrees).


10. Strain this again, and return to the jar. You are all set.


Again, the drink is called a Normandier. You add this shrub to some cider and some calvados and some angostura bitters and then you drink it and wish it was the only thing you had ever had in your mouth. And we have it on the list at GwaiLo Popup. and 416 489 8922 for resos.

See you soon kiddies.



For this month, one of my cocktails (which is featured on the GwaiLo Pop-Up List) is also on the menu at Origin on King. The drink is called the Paper Crane. It is based on the modern classic, the Paper Plane. Only I subbed in Mekhong, a thai whiskey (though I think it comes from sugar cane, which would make it closer to a rum or cachaca, no?) in place of bourbon.

If you order this drink at Origin three dollars will be donated to the Toronto People With AIDS Foundation. You can find out more about them here.

The drink goes as follows

Equal Parts:
Amaro Nonino
Lemon Juice

Shake it and serve it straight up, or on rocks if you like. But be careful about leaving it on ice for too long, amari tend to get more bitter the more they dilute. (I figured that out while making The Velvet Glove, one of Christina Kuypers‘ inventions that you will also find on the Gwailo Pop-Up list). You can make it as strong as you want, but I’m big on a 3/4oz. measure.

I swear I will be posting more on this thing in the next few weeks. Keep checking it out. Also, when you are done having a drink at Origin, call 416 489 8922 to make a reservation for the Gwai Lo Pop-Up at Sen5es at the SoHo Metropolitan hotel. We’re only there until the 24th.

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