Words by: Jane Ryan and Simon Difford
Pictures by: Gareth Evans

15:28 GMT // 25 Feb 2014

You may have thought that February and March in the northern hemisphere were confined to the likes of cauliflowers, leeks and spring greens but it’s also the season of the blood orange. This rich and vibrant variant of the citrus fruit makes a wonderfully addition to cocktails calling for orange juice as well inspiring its own recipes.


Native to southern Italy and parts of Spain, the blood orange can vary from the dark-fleshed Moro variety to the delicately flavored Tarocco. Their blood-red hue comes from a pigment called anthocyanin, found in varying degrees depending on the fruit.

The Flavour Thesaurus by Niki Segnit describes the fruit saying ‘blood oranges usually add a berry, specifically raspberry, note to the sweetness.’ The book goes on to suggest some unusual flavour pairings such as asparagus in a sauce maltaise, and with beetroot courtesy of Heston Blumenthal at The Fat Duck.

Searching for more than the typical sweet blood orange twists on classics we asked bartenders to share their blood orange recipes. A weekend of tastings and we present our favourite:

….Bloody Blood & Sand
Garnish: Orange zest twist
How to make: SHAKE all ingredients with ice and fine strain into chilled glass.
¾ shot Blended Scotch whisky
¾ shot Islay single malt whisky
¾ shot Cherry Heering cherry brandy liqueur
¾ shot Martini Rosso
¾ shot Blood orange juice
Comment: An equal parts Blood & Sand that works due to the smoky influence of Islay single malt whisky and the rounding citrus notes of blood orange juice.
Origin: The original Blood and Sand cocktail was created for the premiere of the 1922 Rudolph Valentino movie, Blood and Sand. This 2014 adaptation amplifies Scotch notes with the addition of Islay whisky and uses blood orange juice to add colour and flavour.




Bartenders invited to Singapore Sling comp on

By Sacha Delfosse – editor bars&clubs

Australian bartenders are being invited to pull out their Cherry Heering liqueur bottles and enter this year’s Peter F. Heering Sling Award.

The award celebrates the classic Singapore Sling cocktail and one of the key ingredients of the drink, Cherry Heering, a liqueur that has been around since 1818 and which is still sold in over 100 markets.

“The iconic Peter F. Heering brand has had an unprecedented march back onto the back and front bar all around the world over the past few years and The Sling has always been the champion cocktail for Cherry Heering,” said Peter F. Heering CEO, Adéle Robberstad.

As part of the competition, bartenders have been invited to come up with their own twist on the classic Singapore Sling. Just as in the original Singapore Sling recipe, the drink will need to contain the iconic Cherry Heering liqueur.

No homemade syrups or other infusions will be allowed. Bartenders will also be required to name and photograph their cocktail entry and upload the pictures and the recipe to the brand’s website anytime between April 22 and May 25.

A winner will be chosen from each competing country by an international jury. From there the top 15 will move on to the semi-final round, from where the five finalists will be decided.

The five finalists will be flown to the BCB Bar Convent in Berlin, Germany in early October to present their cocktails, and the winner will be voted for by a mixture of expert judges and audience members. The winner will take home €500 and a silver Stelton shaker from Denmark.


Cocktail Challenge: Pig’s blood on

By @Readerkate

I didn’t realize how gross it was going to be,” confessed Nandini Khaund, one of the bartenders behind the app Craft Cocktail and blog Challenged by Kristin Wolfel of the Charleston to make a drink with pig’s blood, Khaund was initially unfazed—she’s an omnivore who has no problem with blood sausage and the like. Her source for raw pig’s blood was a charcuterie-making friend of hers, Rootstock chef Mike Simmons, and she’d arranged for our video shoot to take place at a West Loop salumeria, where she enlisted one of the butchers as an assistant. But then it came time to actually drink the pig’s blood. A bartender has to know her ingredients, after all.

“At first it just tasted like blood,” Khaund said. “Then the finish started kicking in,” and the taste grew smoky, then more and more rich, then gamy, until “by the end it just tasted like this iron death. It was really intense, and it went for like a half hour.” She found that drinking the blood affected her physically too—”my heart was racing.”

Such a potent force requires a powerful counteragent, but rather than take the spicy, savory route—a Bloody Mary would of course be the obvious choice—Khaund chose to go sweet. “I think dark chocolate goes with iron and those flavors,” she said, so she decided on a strong, fruity, chocolaty riff on the Blood & Sand, a Prohibition-era cocktail made with scotch, cherry brandy or Heering cherry liqueur, orange juice, and sweet vermouth.

Pig’s Nose, her choice of scotch, was right in keeping with the porcine theme. To add the chocolaty notes she sought, Khaund drew on creme de cacao and La Colombe’s Pure Black cold-pressed coffee, which she felt also complements the blood’s metallic taste. The drink’s fruity element came in the form of Combier Roi René Rouge cherry liqueur and—what else?—blood orange juice. To further accentuate the chocolaty coffee flavors, she used the Sicilian amaro Averna in place of sweet vermouth. Finally, she gave her serving vessel a pig’s blood rinse, pouring a bit of it into her chalice and rotating the glass to coat its interior.

What to call this dark, heavy, blood-red drink made with an ingredient that tastes like iron death? Khaund, who plays keyboards in the please-don’t-call-us-metal septet Bloodiest, didn’t have to think long. Back in 1986 the thrash band Slayer, the “fastest, heaviest, most evil band on the planet,” according to the Reader’s Luca Cimarusti, made its major-label debut with Reign in Blood.

  • Nandini Khaund’s tribute to Slayer
  • Dustin Park

Reign in Blood

3/4 oz blood orange juice
3/4 oz Combier Roi René Rouge cherry liqueur
1/2 oz creme de cacao
1/4 oz Averna amaro
1 oz La Colombe Pure Black cold-pressed coffee
1 1/2 oz Pig’s Nose Scotch
1/8 oz pig’s blood, for the rinse

Combine all ingredients up to the pig’s blood in a mixing glass. Add ice and stir. Then rinse the glass: pour the pig’s blood into a chalice, tip it, and turn it, coating the interior. Pour off any excess blood and strain the drink into the prepared vessel.

FINE WINE issue nbr 1, 2014

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