Happy Hour 0
Plans are in full swing for New Year's Eve parties, bowl game watch parties, and other celebrations. And the beginning of the new year is the perfect time to try new things. You may be surprised to learn that olive oil and vinegars can be used as ingredients to create delicious and refreshing cocktails. If you are unsure about how to use these unconventional ingredients, keep reading. We've included suggestions and recipes for outstanding cocktails that your guests will enjoy.
Olive Oil Cocktails
Gin and vodka can be "washed" or infused with olive oil to give an extra richness to your cocktails. You can use an unflavored olive oil or any of our infused olive oils.
Oil-Washed Vodka or Gin
250 ml. vodka
45 ml. high-quality extra virgin olive oil
Combine vodka and oil in a freezer-safe container and let sit at room temperature for 5 days to infuse. Place the container in the freezer. Once the oil has solidified, scrape it away and discard.
Extra Virgin Martini
(from Chef Todd English)
1 orange segment
3 to 5 fresh basil leaves
3 oz vodka
½ oz dry vermouth
½ oz Cointreau
¼ oz simple syrup
¼ oz extra virgin olive oil
Muddle the orange segment and basil leaves in a mixing tin. Add the vodka, Cointreau, vermouth, simple syrup, olive oil, and ice, and shake well. Strain into a martini glass and float an additional drop of olive oil over the top.
The Extra Virgin Cocktail
(from The Fig and Olive)
2 ounces cucumber vodka
1 ounce blood orange
3/4 ounce lime juice
1/2 ounce simple syrup
1/2 ounce Blood Orange EVOO
1/2 celery sprig
1. Chop up celery sprig and muddle inside mixing tin; then add in blood orange olive oil after the celery is muddled
2. Add juice and syrup to mixing tin
3. Add 2 ounces cucumber vodka
4. Add ice
5. Shake and strain over fresh ice
6. Add splash of soda
7. Add celery sprig for garnish
Cocktails with Balsamic Vinegar
Balsamic Lemonade and Vodka Cocktail
(from What's Gaby Cooking)
10 lemons, juiced, approx 1 cup of lemon juice
3/4 cup super fine sugar
4 cups water
1 - 2 tsp 25 Star Balsamic Vinegar (start with 1 tsp, test it, and add more if desired)
1 cup vodka
Combine the lemon juice, sugar and water in a large pitcher and mix to combine. Add the Balsamic Vinegar and taste. Adjust amount of balsamic if needed. Add the vodka and stir.
Strawberry Basil Balsamic Shrub with Gin
A bunch of strawberries, very ripe
Strawberry White Balsamic Vinegar
Sparkling water or club soda
Cut the strawberries into chunks and toss them with sugar in a bowl until they’re well-coated. Put it in the fridge overnight until the sugar has dissolved.
Strain the syrup out, squeezing out the solids, and mix with an equal part balsamic vinegar. Put it in a jar in the fridge and shake it once or twice a day.
Make a basil simple syrup, by combining one cup of water with one cup of sugar and add a ton of basil to and let sit until it dissolved.
In a tall glass, add equal parts gin and strawberry balsamic shrub and about half the amount of the basil syrup. Top with sparkling water for a little fizz and add a festive straw.
Dark Chocolate Balsamic Martini
(from Scout Mob)
Dark Chocolate Balsamic Vinegar
•Rim two chilled martini glasses with lavender sugar
• Chill approximately 3 ounces of vodka in the cocktail shaker
• Add 1 tablespoon of dark chocolate balsamic vinegar
• Shake all ingredients and strain into glasses
For the Glass
We also have the perfect garnishes for your cocktail glasses. From hot and spicy to smokey to savory, you're sure to like one of these:
-- Ghost Pepper salt
-- Chili Lime Margarita salt
-- Bloody Mary salt
-- Vintage Merlot salt
Flavors of the Week, 12/20 0
This week before Christmas, we are highlighting some of our staff's favorite combinations. All 3 of these pairings make great gifts.
-- Smokey Garlic: Another version of this delicious flavor combination. This option features Smokey Hickory EVOO and Garlic Dark Balsamic Vinegar. It is the perfect marinade for anything grilled or smoked. A perennial favorite.
-- Tuscan Herb and Sassy Italian: Pour a little Tuscan Herb EVOO and sprinkle with the Sassy Italian Bread Dipper. Serve this with some French bread for an appetizer at your holiday gatherings. Your guests will love it.
We can package these in beautiful gift bags or baskets, and we can also help you design a custom gift too. Stop by the shop this week!
Friday Favorites 0
At the top of our list this week, we highlight 2 new products that we are so excited about.
1. Bravado Spice Company Hot Sauces: Your wish is our command! Many of you asked for hot sauces, and we've found the perfect sauces to complement our oils and vinegars. We're happy to offer Bravado Spice Company's complete line of hot sauces. Crafted in Houston, TX, these sauces have more than just heat. They are bursting with fresh, bold flavors that you are going to love. Choose from the following options:
-- Crimson: This red sauce features red jalapeño and arbol peppers.
-- Pineapple and Habanero: A sweet and spicy combination of habanero peppers and pineapple and a dash of yellow bell peppers and garlic.
-- Jalapeno and Green Apple: Green apple elevates jalapeño and poblano peppers in this flavorful green sauce.
-- Ghost Pepper and Blueberry: For the truly adventurous, this sauce is spicy, unusual, and completely delicious. It combines blueberries, raspberries, ghost peppers, and black pepper.
2. What's Cookin' Cobblers: These decadent cobblers are made right here in Hot Springs, and they are flying off the shelves. We love them so much, and evidently you do too. We sold out last weekend, but not to worry, we are restocked for this weekend and Black Friday. Choose from these 3 heavenly flavors:
-- Chocolate Cobbler: This is so decadent and tastes great with vanilla ice cream. Drizzle one of our vinegars over the top, such as: Mocha Almond Fudge, Chocolate, Espresso, Maple, Pecan Praline, Vanilla, or Bordeaux Cherry Dark Balsamic Vinegar. Also, a little sprinkle of Vintage Merlot Finishing Salt tastes great, too.
-- Easy Peach Cobbler: Tastes better than mom's, but it's twice as easy to prepare. Top it off with some ice cream and then a drizzle of one of our vinegars, such as: Peach or Coconut White Balsamic or Pecan Praline, Vanilla, or Maple Dark Balsamic Vinegars.
3. Holiday Lights at Garvan Woodland Gardens: It's that time!! Holiday Lights kicks off on Saturday at Garvan Woodland Gardens. This event continues until December 31.
Make it a great weekend!
- Lisa Emmert
- Tags: Bordeaux Cherry Dark Balsamic Vinegar Bravado Spice Company Hot Sauces Chocolate Dark Balsamic Vinegar Coconut White Balsamic Vinegar Espresso Dark Balsamic Vinegar Friday Favorites Garvan Gardens Maple Dark Balsamic Vinegar Mocha Almond Fudge Dark Balsamic new product Peach White Balsamic Vinegar Pecan Praline Dark Balsamic Vinegar Strawberry White Balsamic Vinegar Vanilla Dark Balsamic Vinegar Vintage Merlot Sea Salt What's Cookin' Cobblers
Flavors of the Week 10/3/16 0
Get ready to have your mind blown. We’ve paired some unexpected flavors together for some amazing tastes. You are going to love these!!
-- Strawberry Fields (Rosemary EVOO and Strawberry White Balsamic Vinegar): I cannot tell you how much I love this pairing. It’s fresh and flavorful and I can’t leave it alone. It will be perfect on salads, pork, and chicken.
Strawberry Fields Roasted Chicken
1 (3.5 to 4 pound) roasting chicken
Strawberry White Balsamic Vinegar
6 fresh rosemary springs
6 bunches fresh sage
salt and pepper, to taste
1. Preheat oven to 375ºF.
2. Strip leaves from 1 spring of rosemary and 1 bunch of both thyme and sage. Chop the herb leaves.
3. Empty the cavity of the chicken and pat chicken dry with paper towel. Rub chicken with EVOO and vinegar. Sprinkle on half the chopped herbs, salt, and pepper. Rub chicken to evenly distribute herbs.
4. Place half the remaining herbs on a roasting tray and place the chicken on top of the herbs. Stuff the remaining herbs inside the cavity.
5. Roast the chicken approximately 1 hour at 375F, or until meat thermometer reads 165F at the deepest part of the thigh, and juices run clear.
6. Transfer to serving platter.
-- “HOT” Chocolate (Jalapeno EVOO and Mocha Almond Fudge Dark Balsamic Vinegar): This unique and delicious pairing hits the mark of sweet and spicy. I use jalapeño EVOO on almost everything, and I love a spot of Mocha Almond Fudge Dark Balsamic Vinegar in my coffee. However, pairing these two together takes things to another level. Delicious!! This will be perfect with berries for a light, yet decadent dessert.
Mexican Chocolate Brownies
1/4 cup Avocado Oil
1/4 cup Jalapeno EVOO
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon Mocha Almond Fudge Dark Balsamic Vinegar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease a 9x9-inch baking pan.
2. In a medium bowl, mix together oils, sugar, vanilla, and vinegar. Beat in eggs. In another bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the liquid ingredients. Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan.
3. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until brownies begin to pull away from the edges of the pan. Let cool on a wire rack before cutting into squares.
-- Cherry Limeade (Persian Lime EVOO and Bordeaux Cherry Dark Balsamic): This seriously tastes like a cherry limeade. I love it! This is another pairing that will compliment salads, chicken, and fruit.
Cherry Limeade Chicken
(makes 4 servings)
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup Bordeaux Cherry Dark Balsamic Vinegar
1/4 cup Persian Lime EVOO
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon lime zest
1. In a small bowl, add vinegar, EVOO, salt, and lime zest. Mix thoroughly with a whisk.
2. Add chicken and marinade to a ziplock bag and close it. Turn the chicken several times to make sure it is well coated. Marinate in the refrigerator for 6 to 8 hours.
3. Prepare grill.
4. Remove chicken breasts from marinade and place them on the prepared grill. Discard marinade.
5. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes on each side. Chicken is done when it is no longer pink in the center and the juices run clear.
-- Twist of Orange (Blood Orange EVOO and Garlic Balsamic Vinegar): These two flavors work so well together and make a delicious marinade for anything you want to grill. They are also a good choice for stir-fries.
Orange and Garlic Roasted Asparagus
1 1/2 pounds fresh asparagus, trimmed
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
4 tablespoons Blood Orange EVOO
Garlic Dark Balsamic Vinegar
1. Preheat oven to 450ºF.
2. In a bowl, toss asparagus with EVOO.
3. Arrange asparagus in a single layer on a roasting pan on baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt.
4. Roast asparagus for ~20 minutes, or until tender. Turn asparagus at 10 minutes.
5. Remove from oven and drizzle with vinegar.
Get Your Grill On 0
Labor Day weekend is upon us, and EvilO has the ingredients you need for the best BBQ on the lake. Here are some suggestions for appetizers, grilling, salads, and even dessert.
Try these unique and delicious combinations for both marinades and drizzling on your grilled dishes.
— Garlic EVOO with Hickory Dark Balsamic Vinegar
— Jalapeno EVOO and Pineapple White Balsamic Vinegar
— Smoked Hickory EVOO with Pear White Balsamic Vinegar
— Chipotle EVOO with Garlic Dark Balsamic Vinegar
— Tuscan Herb EVOO with Italian Lambrusco Red Wine Vinegar
— Rosemary EVOO, Meyer Lemon EVOO with Garlic Dark Balsamic Vinegar
— Garlic EVOO with Honey Ginger White Balsamic Vinegar
In addition, our 25 Star Dark Balsamic Vinegar tastes fantastic drizzled over grilled steaks.
It may be the beginning of September, but temperatures are still hot. If you plan on serving a salad at your holiday gathering, check out these tasty salad dressing ideas.
— Garlic EVOO with Italian Lambrusco Red Wine Vinegar
— Tuscan Herb EVOO with Garlic Dark Balsamic Vinegar
— Basil EVOO with Strawberry White Balsamic Vinegar
Our Salad Sprayer makes dressing salads (and veggies) easy and convenient. They feature 2 chambers to keep your oil and vinegar separate. You control the percentage of oil to vinegar to spray on your salad. Choose from 100% oil or vinegar and anything in between.
Yes!! Oil and vinegar compliment your desserts, too. From simple garnishes to baked goods, there is a decadent dessert idea for you.
— Blood Orange EVOO compliments chocolate very well. In fact, it’s addictive. Use it in place of other oils or fats in your recipes for brownies, chocolate cake, or chocolate cupcakes. You’ll be hooked.
— Blood Orange EVOO and Chocolate Dark Balsamic Vinegar drizzled over ice cream or cheesecake. Or, use it as a dipping sauce for angel food cake.
— Coconut White Balsamic Vinegar and Pineapple White Balsamic Vinegar drizzled over ice cream, fruit, or cheesecake.
— Jalapeno EVOO or White Balsamic Vinegar, Garlic Cilantro EVOO or Dark Balsamic Vinegar taste great added to salsa, guacamole, or black beans.
— Chipotle EVOO goes great with our Sassy Italian bread dipper.
— Pair Basil EVOO with Sassy Italian bread dipper and Fleur de Sel finishing salt.
We’d love to help create the perfect combination for your Labor Day celebrations. Come down to the shop and sample all our oils and vinegars.
- Lisa Emmert
- Tags: 25 Star Dark Balsamic Vinegar Basil EVOO Blood Orange EVOO Chipotle EVOO Chocolate Dark Balsamic Vinegar Coconut White Balsamic Vinegar Garlic Dark Balsamic Vinegar Garlic EVOO Hickory Dark Balsamic Vinegar Honey Ginger White Balsamic Vinegar Italian Lambrusco Red Wine Vinegar jalapeno EVOO Meyer Lemon EVOO Pear White Balsamic Vinegar Pineapple White Balsamic Vinegar Rosemary EVOO smokey hickory EVOO Strawberry White Balsamic Vinegar Tuscan herb EVOO
What About Vinegar? 0
We’ve discussed our rich and smooth olive oils, but what about our flavorful vinegars? There’s a lot to love about our large selection of flavored and infused and vinegars. Chances are we have a variety for you to fall in love with.
How is it Made?
Making vinegar involves a 2-part process. It starts with a liquid containing natural sugar, such as grape juice, apple cider, or coconut sap . The addition of yeast changes the sugars to alcohol. This is called alcoholic fermentation. Next, a bacteria called Acetobacter is added to the liquid. It changes the alcohol to acetic acid. The product is now considered vinegar.
What’s So Special About Balsamic Vinegar?
Balsamic vinegar originated in Modena, Italy and was first mentioned in the Royal Archives of Emperor Henry II in 1046. Because of their high sugar content, only Lambrusco or Trebbiano grapes are used to make balsamic vinegar.
Using ancient, traditional methods, carefully selected Lambrusco or Trebbiano grapes are pressed to produce “must”. Next, the must is simmered in copper cauldrons until it is reduced to 40 to 70%. The concentrated must is transferred to casks made of chestnut, cherry, ash, oak, mulberry, and juniper. The must is left to age for at least 12 years. As it ages, some of the liquid evaporates and some is absorbed into the cask. At intervals of 12, 18, or 25 years, the reduced liquid is moved into a smaller barrel and the new must is used to top off another barrel.
Traditional Balsamic Vinegar
Traditionally produced balsamic vinegar is regulated by the European Union Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) certification and Italy’s Denominazione di Origine Controllata (DOC). To obtain DOC and PDO certification, balsamic vinegar must be produced in Modena or Reggio Emilla from Trebbiano or Lambrusco grapes grown in Modena or Reggio Emillia. It must be aged a minimum of 12 years and approved by the two consortia. Only a small amount is produced each year and is bottled in unique 100 ml bottles. It costs between $75 and $120 per bottle.
Balsamic Vinegar of Modena
This type of balsamic vinegar certified by the European Union Protected Geographical Indication (PGI). Balsamic Vinegar of Modena is made by mixing concentrated or cooked grape must and wine vinegar (wine vinegar is NOT used in traditional balsamic vinegar). This blend is then aged in wooden casks. PGI certifies balsamic vinegars of Modena at a minimum of 2 months or at 3 years. Only grapes from Lambrusco, Sangiovese, Trebbiano, Albana, Ancellotta, Fortana and Montuni vines can be used. Also, a minimum amount of 10% wine vinegar, aged at least 10 years, can be used. All vinegars with the PGI logo must be approved by third party auditors of the PGI.
Balsamic Vinegars at EvilO
We offer a 25 Star Balsamic vinegar from Modena, Italy. It is made especially for our supplier by one of the best artisan producers in Modena. This producer began making balsamic vinegar in 1889. It is considered a Balsamic Vinegar of Modena, although it does not have PGI certification (due to being marketed by a US wholesaler from a US facility to multiple stores). It does not include any thickeners, sweeteners, or low-grade vinegar. Our 25 Star Balsamic vinegar is used in many of our flavored vinegars.
Dark Balsamic vs. White Balsamic
At EvilO, we offer a selection of both white and dark balsamic vinegars. Both are made from the same grapes, but white balsamic is simmered carefully at a lower temperature to prevent caramelization and is often aged for less time. White balsamic features a lighter and cleaner taste. Dark balsamic tastes sweeter and richer.
Peruse the following lists and check out all the delicious flavors we offer at EvilO. Make your own list and come down and try a few (or try them all!).
Dark Balsamic Vinegars
Pecan Praline: A rich and sinful delight in our 25 Star Balsamic Vinegar. Drizzle over ice cream or baked apples. Pairs well with our butter infused EVOO or coconut or chocolate balsamic vinegar.
Vanilla: Another delicious flavor to drizzle over ice cream. Use to flavor glazes and icings or pour a little in your morning oatmeal. Pairs well with blood orange, butter, chipotle, Meyer lemon, or Persian lime EVOO.
Bordeaux Cherry: sweet and tart! Reminiscent of brandied cherries. A great choice on salads featuring feta, goat, or blue cheese. Also a great addition to sauces and glazes. Pair with Persian lime EVOO for a cherry limeade flavor.
Espresso: Perfect for every coffee lover, this balsamic vinegar makes a great marinade or rub for steaks. It’s also delicious added to brownies or chocolate cake. Drizzle over ice cream. Pairs well with blood orange or chipotle EVOO.
Fig: Imparts a nutty and semi-sweet flavor. Perfect on salads or as a bread dipper. Pairs well with blood orange, chipotle, garlic, Meyer lemon, or Tuscan herb EVOO.
Garlic: Makes the most delicious marinade. Pair with Smoked Hickory EVOO for grilled or roasted meat and vegetables. Also yummy on salads.
Garlic Cilantro: Tastes delicious in all your favorite Tex-Mex dishes. Drizzle over tacos, taco salads, guacamole, or salsa. Use as a marinade for fajita meat.
Hickory: Rich, sweet, and smokey. Makes an ideal marinade for grilled meats and as your secret ingredient in baked beans. Pairs well with garlic and Persian lime EVOO.
Lavender: A lovely delicate and floral vinegar. Drizzle over cheeses, salads, grilled meats, or veggies. Pairs well with rosemary, basil, or herbes de Provence EVOO.
25 Star: Dark, thick, and sweet. Drizzle over steaks, tomato and mozzarella salad, bruscetta, or any grilled veggies.
8 Star: Crisper and lighter than 25 Star. The perfect accompaniment for fresh fruits and veggies.
White Balsamic Vinegars
Blueberry: Sweet like blueberries. This vinegar is ideal for salads or drizzled over cheeses. Pairs well with Meyer lemon or butter infused EVOO.
Coconut: A tropical treat! Drizzle over fresh fruit, white fish, ice cream or sorbet. Use in salad dressings or marinades. Pairs well with Persian lime or Meyer lemon EVOO.
Jalapeno: Sweet and sassy! For those who like a little heat and a little sweet. Ideal for marinades. Pairs well with blood orange, chipotle, garlic, or Persian lime EVOO.
Lemongrass Mint: light and refreshing. You’ll love this white balsamic vinegar on shrimp, lamb, rice, salads, and marinades. Highlights any Asian dish. Pairs well with basil or garlic EVOO.
Orange: Like a sweet, juicy orange. A great vinegar for salad dressings, drizzled over ice cream, or as a glaze. Pair with butter infused EVOO.
Peach: Tastes like a ripe, juicy peach. Absolutely delicious in salad dressings and in marinades for poultry or pork. Pairs well with jalapeño or Persian lime EVOO.
Pear: A fruity delight. Add to salads or marinades. Pairs well with smoked hickory, basil, or chipotle EVOO.
Pineapple: This sweet, tropical vinegar is great in marinades, on salads, or drizzled over ice cream. Delicious when paired with chipotle, Persian lime, or jalapeño EVOO. Also pairs well with coconut balsamic vinegar.
Pumpkin Pie Spice: Evokes the flavors and scents of Fall. Add to tea, coffee, martinis, or milkshakes. Also a great addition to pancakes, oatmeal, or muffins. Pairs well with Picual or Cinnamon EVOO.
Honey Ginger: A flavorful choice for Asian or grilled dishes. Also good in salad dressings. Pairs well with Meyer lemon or garlic EVOO.
Raspberry Ginger: Refreshing and crisp, this vinegar is the perfect accompaniment for fresh fruit, pancakes, and salads. Pairs well with blood orange EVOO.
Strawberry: My favorite white balsamic vinegar. Super sweet with a bit of tartness. Tastes great on a spinach salad or paired with the jalapeño EVOO. I add a bit to water or iced tea for incredible flavor.
Serrano Chile Honey: Another sweet and spicy offering. Made with small batch honey from 5th generation beekeeper in the Pacific Northwest. You'll love this vinegar in salad dressings, sauces, and marinades. Pairs well with blood orange and Persian lime EVOO.
Lambrusco: This is a delicious red wine vinegar made from the long, natural maturation of Lambrusco wine. Aged in oak barrels for an unmistakable flavor. An EvilO favorite. Perfect with steak and in salad dressings.
- Lisa Emmert
- Tags: 25 Star Dark Balsamic Vinegar Bordeaux Cherry Dark Balsamic Vinegar Coconut White Balsamic Vinegar Espresso Dark Balsamic Vinegar Fig Dark Balsamic Vinegar Garlic Cilantro Dark Balsamic Vinegar Garlic Dark Balsamic Vinegar Hickory Dark Balsamic Vinegar Honey Ginger White Balsamic Vinegar Italian Lambrusco Red Wine Vinegar jalapeño white balsamic vinegar Lavender Dark Balsamic Vinegar Peach White Balsamic Vinegar Pear White Balsamic Vinegar Pecan Praline Dark Balsamic Vinegar Pineapple White Balsamic Vinegar Pumpkin Pie Spice Balsamic Vinegar Raspberry Ginger White Balsamic Vinegar Serrano Chile Honey Vinegar Strawberry White Balsamic Vinegar Vanilla Dark Balsamic Vinegar