Oregeat for 3?

Today's recipe called for champagne. Again. I've drunk more champagne in the last 2 months than I have in the last 2 years. I bought a bottle (prosecco actually), but I noticed that next weekend serves up a champagne cocktail too, so I'll just save it for then and double dip.

In the meantime, I got my hands on some orgeat, that mystical soul of the almond that's called for in Mai Tais and other Don the Beachcomber type drinks. I couldn't find it around here. Or orange bitters. How esoteric are orange bitters, for god's sake? I poked around on the internet and found a great place called Keg Works that carries all kinds of different bitters plus orgeat and a zillion other products for the cocktail connoisseur. I placed an order online, and within literally 2 days the box was at my door. I recommend them highly.

Since now I have the elixir d'almond, I decided to go back to the Scorpion that I brewed up a couple weeks ago. It's a Mai Tai type drink: gin, brandy, lemon juice, orange juice, orgeat. Last time I'd used a little almond extract and some orange blossom water. Verdict today: not bad for all the citrus juice in it. It doesn't taste like a brunch drink on a cruise ship. More sophisticated than that (the brandy, maybe?). But I really couldn't taste the orgeat. It wouldn't hurt to slosh in a double dose, I guess.

Since I couldn't let a whole bottle of the stuff go to waste, I decided to try the Mai Tai recipe on the side. Minus the fruit. You know my aversion to that sort of thing. So even more gin, cointreau, lime juice (I used Rose's to reduce the acidity a little), cointreau, orgeat. I doubled the quantities and worried about a half cup more gin and the effect on my liver.

Verdict on the Mai Tai: I can taste the orgeat a little bit in this one (postscript: a lot more than in the Scorpion; maybe less citrus and no brandy helps it come out), sort of the "what is that flavor" sort of thing like herbs in soup. But I'm getting a bit of a bitterness in the back of my throat. At this point I prefer the Scorpion, but I think the main issue is I need to upgrade from cheap Bacardi to better rum. It's amazing: I've been mixing cocktails for only 2 months, and already my tastes are getting expensive!