The Northern Spy is a well known cocktail made with applejack. We decided to take it on a ride that you won't forget, making 2 versions which are slightly complementary but which also are a bit contrary to each-other as well.
Let's start off with our version of the "Northern Spy" :
Rather than use brandy made from certain fruits (which costs like... $55 a bottle, seriously we're not laying down that kinda scratch just to make one drink for you people) we decided to make our own infusions. Infusions, by the way, are often more flavorful than distilled spirits because they are made from a neutral spirit that uses its power to suck the flavors out of (whatever you use) into an tincture of nummie liquid kick-ass.
Black Dirt Applejack may be one tough cookie, but that doesn't mean it lacks distinctiveness or depth. Bottled in bond and aged bourbon style for 6 years, the warm notes of American Whiskey ride on top of explosive hints of apple to create a taste as smooth and good looking as a Cadillac El Dorado.
The "Northern Spy" traditionally has lemon juice in it, but we opted to leave it out, because it just seemed unnecessary. The taste of the Doc's Draft Cider is fine enough without it and so that was that.
Yes we've done this before. Remember that dried fruits will suck up a bunch of liquid and so you should shake them occasionally to make sure that all the awesome flavor doesn't get locked up in the fleshy fruit bits.
Since they are related, we thought it would be awesome to use Doc's Draft Cider with Black Dirt Applejack rather than some sparkling wine. It really came out nice and the light carbonation and sweet tones complimented the apricot very well.
The Turkish Spy Cocktail.
This is the first infusion we have ever made with figs. Figs seem to want to be friends with booze. They are sweet, and it takes almost no time for their flavor to start coming out in an infusion like this.
If you don't want to get your fingers wet, you can use chopsticks to munch on these little beauties. By the way, we picked these figs up at Sahadi's Importing, where they are available year-round.
There is no reason you actually can't have this as a hot toddy style drink, but we kept it cold here in order to maintain an association with the "Northern Spy" cocktail. If we warmed it up, it would be so far from that, it would need an entirely new name and we're bad at naming things at the moment for some reason.
Pictured above is just some regular black tea (Indian Darjeeling), brewed the normal way with a bit of sugar added and then cooled down. You can probably buy some pre-made stuff from the store and it would be just as good. We were actually going to add lemon to this one, but we just straight up forgot to. It came out pretty nice anyway.
So here's what we did:
"New England Spy" :
2 shots Applejack
1 shot apricot infusion
Top off with Doc's Draft Cider.
Garnish with dried apricot
2 shots Applejack
1 shot fig infusion
Top off with black tea (sweetened with optional lemon).
Garnish with a fig. ...Or not, we don't care.
See you soon.