to the boards
a brief guide to garnishing cocktails
continued from page 1
wheel | Wheels and half-wheels make a fine garnish for sweet
tropical drinks, and look lovely floating in punch bowls and pitchers as
well. Avoid slicing either too thin (flimsy and flaccid) or too thick
(just plain inelegant). Just under ľ" is generally a good
thickness for large wheels; smaller wheels can be as thin as 1/8".
use with: cosmopolitan,
gin fizz, tom collins
| The twist, unlike the wedge or wheel, consists of only the peel
portion of the fruit, generally a lemon. Itís far and away my favorite
garnish to create, although it takes a little bit of work to perfect the
technique. A standard twist that youíll get at most bars is maybe an
inch or two long, and no more than a ľ" wide, but Iím of the
opinion that the ideal twist should be really long, really curly, and
really thin. Because, dammit, it just looks prettier that way.
off the bottom ľ" of both ends of your lemon, just enough
such that the fruit begins to show.
Skedaddle on over to the sink or work over a bowl, as this
next step is messy. Insert the very tip of your knife in the white
pithy part of the lemon, between the skin and the fruit. Donít
push the knife in too far just yet, as youíll end up puncturing
the skin if youíre not careful. Ideally, of course, youíll
want to get as close to the skin as possible, so youíre not left
with a really thick, really bitter twist, but on your first couple
of tries, donít get too ambitious: itís easier to clean up the
innards after youíve popped out the core.
Now carefully begin cutting away the fruit from the peel by
rotating the lemon, gradually pushing the blade
further and further into the fruit. (I find it easier to hold the
sharp side of the knife towards me as I do this.) When youíve
pushed your blade in as far as itíll go, flip the lemon and cut
from the other side.
At this point, you should be able to pop out the core of
the lemon. Set it aside (you can place it in a strainer and squash
with the back of a spoon later on to squeeze out the juice).
stop: there's more!
lounge . nourish
host . laze
. home .