Partida and the Zim Zala Bim

One may notice, as one peruses the plethora of pages on this paltry pile of posts (sweet alliteration: 100 bonus points awarded!), that there is little said about tequila, but when the temperature outside makes me pine for warmer climes, I’ll transport myself there in the cheapest and quickest way at my disposal: through my glass.

While I wouldn’t call myself a tequila expert, I have been lucky enough to do a tasting or two, and through my experiences I have become quite fond of one line in particular: Partida. Beautifully packaged, well crafted, and not insanely expensive, this has definitely become my go-to-tequila, and as such I’d thought that I’d share my experiences with you along with one of my proudest creations as of late, the Zim Zala Bim.

But first, let’s talk tequila.

Partida Tequila was rated higher than any other leading tequila brand based on aggregate scores in a recent taste test conducted by The Academy of Tequila, the official tequila tasting board of Mexico, so you see; it’s not just me who likes the stuff! Partida maintains exceptional standards of quality and consistency to produce 100% blue agave tequila that has been aged for seven to ten years and which is meant to be luxuriated over as one would with a fine scotch.

TASTING NOTES

Partida Blanco (Unaged)

Smooth, clean and crisp flavours of fresh herbaceous agave with notes of brine, olive and citrus. Good acid is present along with an elegant, off-dry finish that’s not too assertive.

Partida Reposado (Aged Six Months)

You are greeted by subdued and graceful aromas of vegetal agave. This is a delicate, peppery reposado that underscores a honeyed, almost almond and milk chocolate palate. The finish is elegant and enduring with the agave in perfect harmony with the wood. The reposado is easily my favorite of the three offerings that we are trying today, especially from a mixing standpoint

Partida Añejo (Aged 18 Months)

A beautiful golden/copper hue, the añejo demands to be sipped slowly to enjoy all of its complexities. The añejo’s honeyed nose allows the agave to take a back seat to the barrel, without having it be overpowered. The palate is elegant (there’s that word again) with spicy marzipan, honey, vanilla, Xmas fruitcake and a finish that just won’t quit. This is definitely a beautiful way to end an evening.

And as it wouldn’t be a proper Spirits and Cocktails post without a cocktail, without further ado, I present for your consuming pleasure, the amazing, the splendorific, the marvelous, the incredible, the shocking…..

ZIM ZALA BIM

2 oz Partida Reposado
2 bar spoons Regans’ orange bitters
2 bar spoons St. Germain Elderflower liqueur
1 bar spoon fine sugar
stir all ingredients to dissolve sugar
add ice and stir
strain into a chilled cocktail glass
squeeze the oil from a lemon peel into glass and toss the peel

This cocktail was inspired by a recipe that I had found and posted about earlier: the Alabazam. The Alabazam has been getting a lot of play here in Seattle lately, even making the list of my favorite local bar, and I thought that it was high time that I created my own take on this lovely libation, based upon what drew me to the recipe in the first place: a boat-load of bitters.

Just as it is the bar spoon of Angostura that makes the Alabazam, it is the two bar spoons of Regans’ orange bitters that makes the Zim Zala Bim. It should be noted that while this drink will work with Angostura orange bitters (it’ll just be a completely different beast) it will not work with Fee’s orange bitters, so you may as well go out and get yourself a bottle of Regans’. Gary Regan’s getting on in years now and any little bit of support we can offer will bring him one step closer to a retirement that is (trust me) loooooong over due (that’s right Gary, that was a dig at your age). The spiciness of Regans’ orange bitters pairs beautifully with the spicy sweetness of Partida’s reposado, and unfortunately Fee’s orange bitters are just too simple to do the tequila justice in this case.

St. Germain offers a touch of sweetness to counteract the bitters as well as a beautiful floral note that just makes this drink sing. The sugar is merely there to add a bit of viscosity and to take off any edge that the alcohol may offer.

The Zim Zala Bim is one of those easy concoctions to create that will absolutely wow your guests with its zippy complexity, and as such I have decided that this new creation is an instant Jamie Boudreau classic that I will prepare for years to come, using it to blow away that jaded tequila drinker who is tired of having nothing but margaritas and the million variations that bartenders have created under different nomenclature as their only option for a tequila cocktail.

Zim Zala Bim

Zim Zala Bim

Drink and pictures by:
Jamie Boudreau
Cocktail Whisperer

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~ by Jamie Boudreau on January 2, 2009.

11 Responses to “Partida and the Zim Zala Bim”

  1. You wanna have to tell your mom that you got your ass kicked by an old man, Jamie? Good choice on the bitters, though, and since I get a dollare for every case sold I’m so much closer to that early-bird special in west palm beach now. Thanks so much, you young whippersnapper.

  2. Looks awesome but I gotta say you suck for making me look for yet another bottle of liquor. Now where the hell am I gonna find St. Germain Elderflower liqueur in NC. Crap.

  3. tasty cocktail. i didn’t have partida around but used my favorite reposado. just bought st germain on the mainland and lugged it back so perfect timing, for sure. the bitters makes a notable difference as you said(but i had to try the each of the three just to be sure).

  4. Tried this last night with Milagro Reposado and really enjoyed it. I think the ideal citrus would have been a grapefruit peel expressed over the top, but didn’t have any available. Still, pretty fun to put a whopping amount of bitters into a drink.

  5. Andrew…try the ABC store. St. Germain is now in NC.

  6. Keith: I agree with the grapefruit comment, I just didn’t happen to have any on hand, so the lemon worked fine.

  7. Jaime,

    This is an incredibly awesome cocktail, although I had to make it with a Fees orange/cardamom combo due to the extreme cold outside and my laziness. I am heading out to Mexico for a few weeks and plan to drink this daily.

    Thank you so much for your generous and excellent blog, which I frequently cite. You are an inspiration!

    Cheers, Sarah

  8. John: Yep, it just arrived at the local store. Gonna try some.

  9. [...] There is such thing as tasty tequila and it’s not Patron. Patrons isn’t bad, but try Partida or Don Julio Anejo neat. People love Margaritas, and that is what Jose Cuervo is for… it should [...]

  10. Okay, let’s check the liquor cabinet for ingredients.
    Reposado Tequila: Check
    St. Germaine: Check
    Sugar: Check
    Lemon peel: Check
    Regan’s Orange:…crap, all I have is Angostura and it’s a 3 hour drive to Seattle from Vancouver AND my girlfriend has immigration issues.
    What the hell, I’ll give it a shot.

    Yowsah! that’s a freaking SPICY meatball

    Verdict: Sigh…what time is DeLaurenti’s open till?

  11. DeLaurenti’s is open ’til 6 and they even carry Bitter Truth now!

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