Hello everyone, I hope you had a good weekend. For father’s day, I drank a glass of my favorite scotch, in honor of dear old dad. But now, we’re going to talk about almost the exact opposite of that.
Today’s epic journey was inspired by this post at Serious Eats. I am not sure if I had very high expectations for cocktail gummy bears, and as such, I would say that these roughly lived up to my expectations. I followed the process described in the article, wherein I first soaked the gummy bears in a blend of spirits, and then froze them before consumption. The alcohol really jellied up the exterior third of the gummy bear, giving it a chalky texture and leaving gummy, gelatinous residue all around the inside of the vessels that contained them. If that doesn’t sound very appealing, it wasn’t.
Freezing them definitely improved the texture, but once they’ve taken a bath in a strong solvent, nothing is going to bring back the care-free, springy quality that is, in this author’s opinion, the primary allure of the gummy bear. Snacking on them all day did give me a hardcore craving for J.Wray and Nephew rum, however, so if you are looking for ways to
turn yourself into perpetuate your behavior as a complete lush, you might as well make some.
For this experiment, I used Haribo gummy bears, which according to their website, come in five flavors
- white – pineapple
- yellow – lemon
- green – strawberry
- orange – orange…
- red – raspberry
I actually had no idea until just this moment that the green was strawberry and the red was raspberry. I guess I can see it? Anyway, we were supposed to use the orange bears for the Negroni, as the artificial orange flavor in the gummy bear is intended to be a mirror of the orange peel notes in the sweet vermouth, but in a fit of cognitive dissonance, I put the red things together and made, apparently, raspberry negroni bears. That didn’t matter one whit, because at the end of the day, Campari was really the only experience these bears delivered. The gin botanicals were detectible if you knew to look for them, but it wasn’t important.
The flavor of Campari is pleasant to me, and so I had no complaints with the flavor, but the texture did not wow me. I would like to taste a good Negroni-flavored candy, but the better way to go about it would be to use the flavors of campari, gin, and sweet vermouth in the fabrication of the candy, rather than after the fact. There is so little alcohol per gummy bear that they are never going to get you buzzed, in any case.
1 oz Gin (Beefeater)
1 oz Campari
Handful of orange (oops!) gummy bears
Marinate the gummy bears in the spirits for about four hours, then remove them from the spirit and allow them to freeze solid. Trick all your friends into eating them.
The Negroni bears were decent, but I prefered the mixture of maraschino, white rum, and pineapple gummy bears seen here on the left.
Hemingwayish Daquiri Bears
1 oz Wray and Nephew Rum
.5 oz Maraschino liqueur
Handful of white gummy bears
Grated grapefruit zest
There is no pineapple in a Hemingway Daquiri, and there is no grapefruit in this recipe, but as with the Negroni, you will bearly taste the bears. I did not actually use grapefruit zest, but it would have been awesome. I love the flavor of this rum, and even though they were not great, I kept coming back for the flavor, and by the end of the day, I was driven to stir some J. Wray with some maraschino and dry vermouth.
The yellow bears, for me, were more of a problem child, although my friend James liked them.
Don’t Do This
1 oz mezcal (Del Maguey Mezcal de Vida)
1 oz Amaro nonino
handful of yellow? gummy bears
No one wants a smokey gummy bear. This simply did not please me at all. Amaro Nonino and mezcal complement each other beautifully, but sometimes my curiosity gets the best of me, and I make mistakes in the name of science.