I’m finally getting around to posting some of the beverages I made on my Maine adventure. I spent the better part of two weeks camping in various places Down East and ultimately ended up in Bar Harbor. Pete and I always cook delicious gourmet campfire meals, and what is a great meal without a great cocktail? The Black Box wine just wasn’t cutting it anymore, so I decided to step up the game.
I wanted to make a few drinks that were representative of the landscape, agricultural, and culinary bounty that Maine offers. I started brainstorming and picking up products at farm stands, country stores, and outposts along my way Down East. I knew inspiration would strike eventually, so I wanted to make sure that I had an arsenal of local ingredients at my disposal.
This drink was created solely (except for the gin, of course) with ingredients I foraged from my campsite at Cobscook Bay.
There were wild blueberries everywhere!
I found some delicious crab apples and spruce tips on the path leading to our site.
I used a aromatic and herbaceous local gin, Cold River by Maine Distilleries, LLC.
And ultimately came out with this:
Add 3 ounces wild Maine blueberries to an 8 ounce mason jar and fill remainder with gin. Let sit for 2 days.
To create the cocktail:
2 ounces of blueberry infused Cold River gin
1 Tbs blueberries (reserve from infusion)
1 Tbs fresh crab apple
Muddle in shaker
Add ice and stir until chilled
Find fresh young spruce tips, pulverize until sticky
Rim glass with tips
Pour gin mixture into mason jar
Garnish with crab apple and spruce
It gets a bit chilly up in Maine at night even in August, so I wanted to make a warm drink to enjoy by the fire. It become quite clear, after visiting Bartlett Spirits of Maine that hot buttered rum was the way to go. They make an exceptional molasses rum called Rusticator. They also have a collection of delicious fruit wine (not usually my thing) and some very nice apple brandy and a pear eau de vie.
I’d been stuffing my face with s’mores for days, and felt I could continue that trend for some time. With that in mind I decided to combine the flavors of s’mores with a hot buttered rum, and thus St. George’s Dragon was born at Lake St. George State Park in Liberty, ME.
St. George’s Dragon
Some really great local ingredients: honey, maple syrup, and spirits. Chocolate from Vermont and marshmallows.
A true campfire cocktail. Melting the butter and chocolate in the rum and brandy mixture.
The finished product with some toasted marshmallows on top.
St. George’s Dragon
2 ounces Rusticator Rum
½ ounce Bartlett Apple Brandy
¼ ounce local honey
¼ ounce local maple syrup
1 teaspoon butter
1/12 bar of dark chocolate
Mix all ingredients except marshmallows in a metal pot. Allow chocolate and butter to melt over the fire. Stir until ingredients are combined. Meanwhile, toast marshmallows over the fire. Add them to the drink.
The last drink was created in Bar Harbor, so not exactly a campfire cocktail, but nonetheless pretty delicious and summery and full of local ingredients.
Maine Root makes an excellent ginger beer which lead me to consider a Moscow Mule variation for my final drink. I knew we would also be visiting Mt. Desert Is. Ice Cream, and I wanted to incorporate one of their delicious flavors into a cocktail. They make some of the best ice cream I’ve ever had, and that’s saying a lot as I live near arguably one of the best ice cream parlors in the world, Toscanini’s.
Mt. Desert Is. Ice Cream in Bar Harbor, Maine.
The ingredients: Cold River Vodka like the gin also from Maine Distilleries, Maine Root Ginger Brew, Mt. Desert Is. Ice Cream Root Ginger, and organic lime (from very far away from Maine).
The finished product! I almost got stung by a nest of wasps taking this photo. Nature!
2 ounces Cold River vodka
1 ounce lime juice
4 ounces Maine Root Ginger Brew
1 small scoop Mt. Desert Is. Ice Cream Root Ginger
Lime wheel garnish
Hope you enjoy these recipes! It was a great trip.
I also want to give a shout out to some of the better cocktail bars on our Maine adventure, The Gothic in Belfast and Havana in Bar Harbor, always nice to be greeted by a friendly talented bar staff! You guys rocked.
Enjoy the rest of the summer, friends, and drink some (more) delicious cocktails!
Xox - Meaghan