Golden Andalusian Cocktails
When Brígida Jiménez, my mentor and one of the world´s best tasters, asked me and my husband to attend the presentation of an up and coming hojiblaca olive oil from Rute, Conde de Mirasol, I couldn´t say no.
Just a few weeks prior, I had tasted this oil and my response was, “WOW”. Wow is a very American response that the son of the Count of Mirasol, Alfonso Gordón, XXIV baron de Borriol, found quite amusing and made my comments regarding their oil even more memorable.
It had everything an olive oil made from hojiblanco olives should have, an intense herbaceous aroma with tones of green almond. Likewise, the oil had the characteristic pungent sensation that comes from the back of your mouth and slowly migrates to the tongue. This sensation lasted for hours!
Conde de Mirasol olive oils are produced from olives originating around the Subbetica Mountain Range of Córdoba. This area is known for top award winning oils like, Rincón de la Subbética, Venta del Barón and Cladivm.
Once we arrived to the old mill, we were ushered into the cellar or “bodega” where olive oils had been stored in the past. This year the olives were processed in the installations of Finca la Torre, a producer of one of the World´s Best Olive Oils. The old mill provided a beautiful backdrop of history where the Count, Brígida and political figures did their part in presenting the EVOO. Then a priest blessed it, after all olive oil is frequently mentioned in both the old and new testaments. After the presentation, we all went out to the patio where olives traditionally had been received for milling to enjoy hors d’oeuvre that used their oil.
Traditional and modern dishes were served but what stood out as innovative and different was a drink made with local ingredients that included Conde de Mirasol´s olive oil. The cocktail professionals who mix up this delightful blend of flavours, Antonio Monte and Aurora Hernandez, were kind enough to give me the recipe.
One of its key ingredients is a local anisette that Rute is famous for and has distilled here since the 17th century. The town even has a museum in its honour, Museos del Aguadiente Anisado de Rute y de España. For purely professional reasons, I had to pick up a bottle before leaving the town so that I could try out the recipe at home.
This fresh drink is a game changer. Next time I plan to serve brunch it will be served in lieu of the mimosa. I have taken the liberty to naming the drink “A Golden Rute”.
2 parts Sweet Anis from Rute (I used Machaquito)
5 parts Peach juice
2 parts Apple juice or concentrate
1 scant part Hojiblanca olive oil from the Subbética preferably Conde de Mirasol
Ice for shaking.
Mint for garnish
I chill all of the ingredients except the olive oil prior to mixing. Shake the mixture vigorously with ice. Serve in a very cold fluted glass, garnish with mint.
At some point the olive oil will begin to settle on the surface of the drink. Although, it is best to drink it immediately, the settling is not a problem since it allows the delightful aromas of the hojiblanca to be perceived first. Be sure to use a very high quality extra virgin olive oil for this recipe. Lower grade olive oils will not add the desired aroma.
When purchasing the oil ensure that you are buying from this harvest year. This should be indicated on the label. Not all producers or bottling companies specify this date but I find it imperative to knowing the freshness of the product. A harvest date from 2015/16 means that the olives were processed this year.
If you weren’t able to use up that bottle of anisette, check out my blog on how to make rosquillas, a fried donut-like sweet.