And just like that, our favorite month of the year (did we mention September was Bourbon Month?) has come to a sad finish, but not without one last booze-rah to toast to our spirit of choice with — what else? — an amalgamation of our favorite bourbon cocktails paired with Korean Cowboy BBQ.
If you’ve celebrated bourbon month with us before you know we typically do something fun to close things off. This year we wanted to change things up and go rogue with a chef who you currently won’t find at any restaurant. Formerly of Station 5 and now corporate chef for B Hotels: Julia Ning.
Just talking to her about the idea of a bourbon BBQ got us salivating, especially when she suggested to do a Korean Cowboy BBQ that would bring out the similarities of Texan (and Tex-Mex) style. Things quickly escalated and before you knew Gio’s Pond became the Wild Korean East complete with homemade Jim Beam® Fireball Shots and a variation of Gui Jarochy‘s Trailer Park Punch recipe to whet the whistle, more Dak Galbi Buttermilk Biscuit Sandwiches than you could fathom, and a live bongo drum performance from local musician A.T. Molina to 90s hip-hop. True story.
But it ain’t no bourbon BBQ without bourbon cocktails, and for that we solicited the expertise of barman Josue Gonzalez who you might know from the recently named best bar in America, Sweet Liberty. Gonzalez took charge of the potables, mixing up a Cowboy Collins (Maker’s Mark®, Anise Ginger Syrup, Yuzu), Korean Mules (Kaffir Lime Infused Knob Creek®, Soto Sake, Lime, Homemade Ginger Beer), Maple Leaf (Basil Hayden’s®, Lemon, Cognac Maple Syrup, Amaro, Bitters), and Basil Hayden’s® Cedar Plank Torched Old Fashioned. More importantly, it ain’t no bourbon BBQ without some BBQ, which leads us to the food.
Julia brought the heat indeed, cooking up Ribeye Bulgogi and Japchae Tacos (marinated with a mixture of soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil, garlic, and pepper) with Scallion Pancakes that acted as a “taco shell” (can you say ingenious?). Sides abound let you have your pancake your way, with everything from Gochujang Black Beans to Grilled Skillet Corn to Caramelized Kimchi and Onions and Cucumber Carrot Coleslaw. It was so good some of us went back for thirds. For those that missed out on the #BourbonMonth festivities, there’s Salty Donut’s last Bourbon Spiked Donut Hole (Basil Hayden’s® Apple Crisp) this weekend. ‘Till next year.