America's CEO (Chief Entertaining Officer) and host of Secrets of Louisville Chefs, Tim Laird, designed a cocktail for us to enjoy, called the Bourbon Lemonade. This refreshing cocktail is made with grilled lemons and rosemary syrup (recipe below). Tim had to cancel last minute in order to appear on the Good Morning America show, so in his place we had Old Forester President, Campbell Brown! The Brotherhood was truly entertained by Campbell's lighthearted stories, insight and humor.
We sampled Old Forester Double-Barreled 1910 from their Whiskey Row series - Campbell was shocked that we had several bottles there, noting that even he can't get it! We also tasted the newly released Old Forester Rye. Campbell gave full credit to Master Taster Jackie Zykan for pushing Old Forester to create a very high quality rye at a $20-22 price point, despite much resistance from the "numbers guys" in the company.
During the presentation, Chef Dave kept the tasty appetizers coming, and being passed to the Brotherhood. We had Rye Crisp with Goat Cheese Benedictine and Lamb Ham, Grit Fritters and Crispy Pork Belly with Bourbon Sorghum Glaze
Dave discussed what it's like being the Executive Chef at Churchill Downs and Owner of the Old Stone Inn. He shared some of the fascinating history of the Old Stone Inn which was built in 1792 with 2 foot thick stone walls to protect from Indian attacks. It later served as a stage coach stop and also played a role in the Civil War. Each of the 11 rooms has its own fireplace and even the original floors are still intact.
Cigars were available for those who wanted to enjoy one on the patio, and many of the Brothers stayed for additional appetizers and dinner.
BOURBON LEMONADE COCKTAIL RECIPE:
Bourbon Lemonade Recipe: Add 1.5 oz Old Forester bourbon to 3 oz Grilled Lemonade. Use rosemary spears for garnish.
Grilled Lemonade Recipe:
Ingredients: 1/2 cup sugar, 12 lemons - halved, 1 quart freshly squeezed lemon juice, 3 cups Rosemary Simple Syrup.
Directions: Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Put the sugar in a small mixing bowl, and then, one at a time, dip the cut side of each lemon into the sugar to coat. Put the coated lemons on the grill and cook 3-5 minutes, until the sugar has carmelized to a deep brown color. Remove from grill and chill for 30 minutes, or until cool. Squeeze the grilled lemons into a medium bowl. You should have about 1 quart of juice. In a large 4-quart container, add the grilled lemon juice, fresh lemon juice and syrup. Taste and add more syrup as needed. Store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Rosemary Simple Syrup:
Ingredients: 3 cups water, 3 cups sugar, 4 rosemary spears (8-10 inches each).
Directions: In a medium saucepan, over medium heat, combine the sugar and water. Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Remove the pan from the heat, add the rosemary, and let the mixture steep for 20 minutes. Strain before using, pressing on the rosemary to extract as much syrup as possible.