1.5 oz. Shochu (House Spirits Uchi No Kami 48 proof)
.75 oz. Grapefruit juice (ruby)
.5 oz. Creme de Violette (Rothman and Winter)
Shake with ice. Double strain into chilled cocktail glass.
In the spirit (no pun intended) of Portland Cocktail Week which includes the Great American Distillers Festival, I wanted to create an original cocktail highlighting one of the many high quality local spirits Portland is distilling. This main ingredient in this cocktail is the result of a partnership of two of Oregon's best, House Spirits and SakeOne. The result of this partnership culminated in a limited release of Shochus at slightly different balances and alcohol levels. The one I am currently working with is the Uchi No Kami Shochu, comprised of Moromi of Koji and Milled Rice at 48.04 proof. Moromi is the fermenting rice mash, and koji spores (aspergillus oryzae in English) are propagated on the fermenting rice grains to eventually yield sake. The different stages of the koji growth will affect the overall result of the product, and the master distiller will select the optimal time to proceed to the next step in distilling. Multi-staged Moromis were brought from Forest Grove to Portland where they spent some time being double stilled in House Spirits copper Alambic pot-still "collecting just the finest of the heart cut."
The nose of the cocktail is a wonderful blend of floral and citrus aromas with vanilla, mallow, and pleasant fermented rice accompaniments. The sip is a delicate balance of flavors, and though the Creme de violette champions the finish, it allows the shochu to breath, while providing the necessary bump to the sweetness from the grapefruit juice. The grapefruit lends the neccesary bite to prevent a muddying of the flavors. A very clean, refreshing finish. Very drinkable.