Where the love of mixology and good music combine
I had the pleasure of participating in Whiskey Network’s interview of Buffalo Trace’s legendary Freddie Johnson several months ago (see the full interview here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rm45mYvdbgM) . It came as a surprise to me that he actually has his own root beer appropriately labeled “Freddie’s Root Beer”. You can buy the root beer directly through the Buffalo Trace website, and I finally was able to have a case sent to me recently. As we are heading into some really warm weather in Southwest Florida, it’s an excellent time to create a boozy root beer float in Freddie’s honor.
Flavor Profile: Minty and Sweet
2 oz Buffalo Trace Bourbon
1/2 oz Crème de Menthe
5 oz Freddie’s Root Beer
3 Scoops of Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream
Combine all ingredients except for the ice cream in a mixing glass. Add ice. Stir for approximately 30 seconds. Add one scoop of ice cream into a Mason jar. Strain contents of mixing glass on top of the scoop of ice cream until the scoop is submerged. Repeat two times. Top off with leftover root beer until you create a nice head.
Garnish: Shaved Dark Chocolate and Mint Leaves
The root beer float is an all-time classic. I remember my first one was at one of those old A&W restaurants back in ancient times (alright…the late 1970’s). I developed a real love for this milkshake alternative with its rich, bark like flavor. The addition of ice cream is a no--brainer and really makes this treat a summer stand out. I think a root beer float should be less sweet than a milkshake, so I opted for a minty, herbal liqueur to back up the root beer and bourbon. You can use any kind of Crème de Menthe; I prefer the uncolored, natural flavor imparted by Tempus Fugit. However, I would highly recommend using homemade vanilla ice cream; it’s a four ingredient delight that is not at all hard to do, and you can tailor the amount of overall sweetness to your liking. For the bourbon, I would recommend the old reliable Buffalo Trace Bourbon, but you can use anything from the Buffalo Trace Mash Bill #1 (low rye) that is available in your area. The Mudslide might be the go--to cocktail in the world of ice cream, but I believe you will find Freddie’s Float a strong contender for the title.
Jumbo Shrimp Jazz Band “Sunny Afternoon” Live at The Spotted Cat (Independent)
My first visit to New Orleans many years ago changed my life musically forever. The Spotted Cat is hallowed ground for the massively talented jazz and blues musicians that call New Orleans home, and this live performance by the Jumbo Shrimper’s is one of my favorites.