01 May 2017

Celebrate the Taste of the Grapefruit

Recently the Hollywood Brown Derby Lounge had crafted a couple of new beverages to add to their growing offerings of Classic Cocktails. Amongst these were a pair of drinks influenced by the grapefruit in the world famous Grapefruit Cake. In fact, one went so far as to actually call itself the Grapefruit Cake Martini. One of these two cocktails hits the mark, while the other goes horribly awry.

The Grapefruit Cake Martini is listed as, “Our concoction will delight you with Deep Eddy Ruby Red Grapefruit Vodka, Stoli Vanil Vodka, and a splash of Cream with a Vanilla Wafer Rim.” While not in the description it also comes with a dried grapefruit slice as a floating garnish. You can see what it looks like for yourself, but while I don’t know what I was expecting, I do know that when this pale pink, cake-encrusted glass was placed in front of me I instantly regretted my decision.

It is very sweet and at the same time very bitter, and tastes nothing like grapefruit to my palate. The only saving grace of this cocktail is the wafer rim, and that’s about as nice a thing as I can say about it. Three out of my four dining partners sipped this concoction and their faces immediately writhed with pain. To the Grapefruit Cake Martini’s credit, the fourth absolutely loved it. So, this is likely a drink some of you will like, but if you try it, don’t say I didn’t warn you!

The second of the grapefruit cocktails is the Derby Cocktail. This menu description reads, “Gentlemen Jack, Florida Honey syrup, and pink grapefruit juice with a Souvenir Derby Hat Glowcube.” I am the first to admit this cocktail does not need a glowcube, if anything it detracts from the drink, but it’s a cute touch and I certainly took the glowing bowler hat home with me. The cocktail known as the Brown Derby has been around for a long, long time, and the only way that the Derby Cocktail differs from the Drown Derby is by including the glowcube.

Using Florida honey syrup adds something a bit unique to the cocktail as with most Florida honey, there is a hint of orange blossom present in the Derby Cocktail. When you combine that with the grapefruit juice and you have a wonderful mixture of citrus flavors that really give this beverage a bright finish. The honey also serves to sweeten up the Gentlemen Jack just a hint. This is a very strong cocktail, both in terms of spirits and in flavors, but it was simply delicious to me. It does a wonderful job of instilling something new into something that definitely feels like old Hollywood.

Grapefruit has long been a staple of handcrafted cocktails, just as it has a longstanding place in the history of the Brown Derby. The two divergently different approaches to utilizing the grapefruit for the Hollywood Brown Derby Lounge’s beverages speak not only changing taste, but also the versatility of the citrus itself. That said, I still believe only one of these cocktails deserve a place on the menu, and you’d be hard-pressed to find as fine of a concoction as the Derby Cocktail. But let’s not speak of the Grapefruit Cake Martini again…

1 comment:

Mini-V said...

I was the clear winner on Grapefruit Cake Martini. Thanks for letting me polish it off. :)