It’s a teaching moment: When is a Kir not a Kir? Or a Margarita not a Margarita? Or a Martini not a Martini?
Every drink made with vodka is not a Martini, every drink made with Tequila is not a Margarita. Yet, each week we are sent a mis-named recipe that only serves to misinform.
Capricious cooks and mixologists, professionals and amateurs alike, give names to their recipes through ignorance or selfishness; for example, “We need a cocktail for St. Patrick’s Day. Let’s call this drink an Irish Kir.”
An omelet is not a frittata. Both are beaten eggs with mix-ins. But for an omelet, the egg is cooked and then folded over the filling, while a frittata blends the mix-ins with the egg and cooks it like a crustless quiche, on the stove top or in the oven.
Since much of our mission is education that you can imagine the consternation this causes.
Here’s that “Irish Kir” story. Why didn’t we publish it around St. Patrick’s Day? We wanted to take a moment to note that regular or “royale,” it’s a delightful summer drink.
So, let’s start at the beginning:
A Kir is a combination of blackcurrant liqueur and white wine or sparkling white wine. The color is red. Photo courtesy Wikimedia.
WHAT’S A KIR?
Kir is a drink that was created by a major of Dijon, in France’s Burgundy region. For an apéritif, Félix Kir (1876-1968) added a splash of cassis (blackcurrant liqueur, a specialty of Burgundy) to Aligote, a local white wine.
The “Kir,” as it was known, became very popular and led to eight different variations, the best known of which, the Kir Royale, substitutes Champagne for the still wine.