World Cup 2014: Monday 6/16/14

World Cup 2014 has been impressive all weekend, and this week start up the USA’s campaign to the next round as well. Looking at yesterdays matches, 1-2 on my predictions, with Ecuador dropping the game at the last moments, and Honduras just …..well, fell apart after the 1st goal. Argentina won, but man Bosnia is my darkhorse team now – they put some hurt on Argentina, kept up, and I can’t wait to see more (and I got this cocktail I would like to make for the next round). With that, we got todays match-ups, which to me look like the day of days really with TWO super matches – USA vs Ghana and Germany vs Portugal. Why on a MONDAY!??! Is what I would like to know….these could have easily been Sunday matches, or even Friday matches, but no, MONDAY! Thanks FIFA. Moving on, 1st match for World Cup 2014 for 6/16/14 – Germany vs Portugal! These two teams are tough as nails, and have their stars, both with power and agility. So, went with two drinks right out of the pocket – and I am sure you can guess what they are:

Depth Charge or Bomb? PC in drinks is not needed

Depth Charge or Bomb? PC in drinks is not needed

For Germany, I went with Jagermeister and the Club Drink – Jager Bomb. I mean, the Jagermeister can stand on it’s own, and they even have a new Vanilla flavor now (decent – I’ll get to a breakdown eventually). Easiest drink to make, and I love coming home and just doing two of these (since a regular sized Redbull can holds a little over 8oz) and starting the rest of my night. Jager Bomb:

  • 1/2 Can of Redbull (about 4oz)
  • 1oz Jagermeister

Fill pint glass with Red Bull, drop in Jager – CHUG!

Portorinha! Don't forget the past!

Portorinha! Don’t forget the past!

On the other side of the coin, we have Portugal. And, since Brasil was a former colony of theirs, I went with a Caipirinha – but done a little different. I call this one the Portorinha (yeh, SUPER original right?). Portorinha:

  • 1.5oz Cachaca
  • 1/2oz Ruby Porto
  • 1/2 Bar spoon sugar
  • 1 quartered medium lime

Cut up lime and pour in Porto and sugar – muddle away. Add ice and Cachaca, shake and pour back into glass. Rinse and repeat till bottles are gone. I poured an extra shot of Porto to sip on while I drank this. Damn good.

This could be one of the best matches of the rounds!

This could be one of the best matches of the rounds!

So, who wins this battle of the heavyweights (both drinks will get you going)? Portugal. That Ruby Porto subbed in for more than half the sugar just makes the drink stand out. You can certainly expand on the drink just like every other Caipirinha and add muddle different fruits in there with the limes, or add more Porto. The next match is one that I scratched my head how to tackle – Iran vs Nigeria. Now living in America you don’t really hear much good stuff about Iran, but if you take a step back there are certainly some good things that come from the area – tea, some good food, and interesting cultural history. My neighborhood pizza place I always went to twice a week near my old apartment was run by an Iranian family and they were always nice. They liked to identify themselves as Persians, as they did not agree with the climate (at the time) of their homeland.

Persian Strength on display

Persian Strength on display

Back to the track here – I found a recipe scattered in different spots but the same recipe for a drink make with Sweet Lemons – something I couldn’t find in just one day, but have some ideas where I can look for some. The drink is called the Persian Rose – and it brings a different character to a cocktail by far. Persian Rose:

  • 2oz Gin
  • 1.5oz Sweet Lemon (I used honey syrup and lemon juice 50/50)
  • 1/2oz Lemon Juice
  • 1/2oz Cherry Heering (I used sweet cherry wine)
  • 1/4oz Rosewater
  • 1/4oz Agave Syrup

Shake all and pour into a cocktail glass. Be ready for an interesting taste.

Nigerian Chapman - earthy and damn good

Nigerian Chapman – earthy and damn good

For Nigeria – they actually HAVE a sort of national cocktail….the Nigerian Chapman – and this cocktail too is a different character than normal cocktails. Angostura bitters are what make the drink to me along with the mix of dark rum vs using light rum, and the fresh fruit. Nigerian Chapman:

  • 2oz Dark Rum
  • 1/2oz Grenadine
  • 1/2 an orange
  • 1/2 a lemon
  • Dashes of Angostura Bitters
  • Sprite to taste

Combine all ingredients except Sprite in cocktail shaker – pour into cocktail glass and fill with sprite. Can also throw into an Ice Filled Collins glass and would also be good. Putting these cocktails head to head was difficult because both have characteristics of strong craft cocktails that do a good job being different with trying to be different.

Almost twins eh?

Almost twins eh?

So who wins here? To me, I think The Chapman wins, but the Persian Rose does a good enough job this could be a tie really as well. And, of course, the big daddy match to us Stateside – USA vs Ghana!!!

USA vs Ghana!

USA vs Ghana!

It’s only fitting no less we play the team that keeps knocking us down FIRST! – we have to win this game…no need to even scroll further I homered this and picked USA anyways, even tho the drink I created for Ghana was better than I expected.

THIS. IS. AMERICA!!!

THIS. IS. AMERICA!!!

For Team USA I picked The Manhattan to be the drink to represent Round 1 – Bourbon is All American, and The Manhattan is hearty, strong, and stays with you. There were at least 20 cocktails I could have picked and my brain just kept coming back to this so stuck with my gut. Perfect Manhattan:

  • 1/4oz Dry Vermouth
  • 1/4oz Sweet Vermout
  • 2oz Bourbon

Mix all ingredients in a rocks glass with a little ice. Lemon twist (cherry optional).

African Cooler - so refreshing and deceptively strong

African Cooler – so refreshing and deceptively strong

Ghana had some interesting notes for me to take, but I went colors again and did a variation on a “breeze” style cocktail. The name that worked for me was the African Cooler – since that is what keeps happening. I used Everclear to give this drink some punch and add a nod at Ghana that you have to respect the power they have hidden within. African Cooler:

  • 1oz Mango Rum
  • 1/2oz Everclear
  • 1/2oz Peach Schnapps
  • 2oz Orange Juice

Combine all ingredients in cocktail shaker with ice. Shake and strain into cocktail glass. Sip and savor. Another day, and yet much more cocktails to come. I have not counted what the cocktail Drink Off score is yet, but I think I am even on wins and losses. Guess I should check….. –D

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