Albemarle Fizz

First, just a reminder that Sunday, June 26, 2011, is our monthly exercise in folly, Savoy Cocktail Book Night at Alembic Bar. If any of the cocktails, (they also have a great beer selection,) on this blog have captured your fancy, stop by after 6 and allow the skilled bartenders, (and me,) to make them for you. It is always a fun time.

Albemarle Fizz
The Juice of 1/2 Lemon.
1/2 Tablespoonful Powdered Sugar. (1 tsp Caster Sugar)
1 Glass Gin. (2 oz Plymouth Gin)
Shake well strain into medium size glass and fill with syphon soda water. Add teaspoonful Raspberry Syrup (1 tsp Homemade Raspberry Syrup*).

You’re out with a girl, you order a Gin Fizz. “For the Lady?” Perhaps an enpinkened Gin Fizz? The Cosmo of its day, no doubt.

Source: Hugo Ensslin, “Recipes for Mixed Drinks” 1916-1917, “Made same as plain Gin Fizz**, adding Raspberry Syrup.”

So I didn’t add Raspberry Syrup afterwards, as it appears the Savoy Cocktail Book is instructing you, I just shook it with the drink.

Albemarle, as in Albemarle North Carolina?

The Historic Albemarle Region

FOUR HUNDRED YEARS of History for North Carolina -indeed for the Nation- begins around the Albemarle and Pamlico Sounds.  From Sir Walter Raleigh’s Lost Colony to existing homes that stood decades before the Revolutionary War to modern-day river towns, this is a land of rich heritage.

Chartered to the Lords Proprietors before the colonies were formed with the Atlantic Ocean as its eastern boundary and encompassing much of the original colony in its domain, the original Albemarle Region now includes the Albemarle, the Pamlico-Neuse Region, and the Outer Banks region -and beyond.

The Lost Colony

In 1584, explorers Philip Amadas and Arthur Barlowe were the first English explorers to set eyes on the North Carolina. They had been sent to the area by Sir Walter Raleigh with the mission of scouting the broad sounds and estuaries in search of an ideal location for settlement. Amadas and Barlowe wrote glowing reports of the Albemarle Region, and when they returned to England a year later with two Natives, Manteo and Wanchese, all of Britain was abuzz with talk of the New World’s wonders.

Queen Elizabeth herself was impressed, and she granted Raleigh a patent to all the lands he could occupy. She named the new land “Virginia”, in honor of the Virgin Queen, and the next year, Raleigh sent a party of 100 soldiers, craftsmen and scholars to Roanoke Island.

Under the direction of Ralph Lane, the garrison was doomed from the beginning. They arrived too late in the season for planting, and supplies were dwindling rapidly. To make matters worse, Lane, a military captain, alienated the neighboring Roanoke Indians, and ultimately sealed his own fate by murdering their chief, Wingina over a stolen cup. By 1586, when Sir Francis Drake stopped at Roanoke after a plundering expedition, Lane and his men had had enough. They abandoned the settlement and returned to England.

Detained by a war with Spain, Lane would not return to Roanoke until 1590. When they arrived, they found the colony deserted with no sign of the settlers, only the work “Croatoan” carved mysteriously in a Pallisade Post.

Bonus Roanoke Trivia: The first child born in the Americas to English parents, Virginia Dare, was born in that colony three weeks after their arrival, on August 18, 1587.

In any case, this is another pleasant Fizz. My lemons are on the small side this time of the year and not particularly juicy, so the thing that is striking me about these fizzes so far, especially when making them in an 8 oz glass, is just how boozy they are. Not really tart, as they would likely be made today. Kind of nice, and frankly, drinkable.

*Raspberry Syrup
1/2 cup Water
1 Cup Washed Raw Sugar
1 Cup Frozen Raspberries
1 Tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar

Combine water and sugar in a saucepan over low heat. When sugar is dissolved, add raspberries and Balsamic Vinegar. Strain through chinois or cheesecloth, mashing to get as much of the liquid as possible. Cool and refrigerate. Makes about 12 ounces.

**Gin Fizz. Juice of ½ Lime; Juice ½ Lemon; 1 tablespoon of Powdered Sugar; 1 drink Dry Gin. Shake well in a mixing glass with cracked ice, strain into fizz glass, fill up with carbonated or any sparkling water desired.

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the drinks in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, the, uh, Sauterne Cup.