Some of you may consider it deceptive. Some, straight up cheating. I consider it just a little white lie. I'm going to let you in on my little secret for how I [re]stock our bar cart leading up to the festive season without burning a hole in our bank account. Because let's face it, being merry ain't cheap.
There's no better place to introduce you to my idea than where it originally began; one Christmas my parents were entertaining a snooty guest who was preaching about his delicate palette and how it can tell the difference between top brands vs. cheap brands of liquor. As he was bragging, little did he know the 'Crown Royal' he was sipping was simply a cheaper brand of whiskey carefully poured into a Crown Royal bottle. And that is how my parents pwned said guest. Able to taste the difference, are you? *insert troll face here*
I'd say my parents did this to stick it to him, but it got me thinking about our own bar cart and how expensive it can be to stock it. With the festive season upon us, the price of entertaining is daunting. One way you could save a few euros is by bluffing your booze; refilling fancy bottles you may have with a cheaper brand that is of equal taste. You could wait until a top brand is reduced or on special price, buy it for the sake of the bottle, and simply refill it with a cheaper substitute after it runs out. It's not lying. I'm not telling you to refill it with brown water. You're putting the same thing into a slightly different bottle, because that fancy bottle costs an extra €20. It's sticking it to the system, man.
This will work with most liquor brands. It works best with rum, whiskey, gin, creamed liquors and vodka to name a few. There are a few however that you can't really mimic. Fancy gold Smirnoff I impulse bought a couple of months ago [there it sits, hardly touched. Because it's too pretty]. Any specifically flavoured drinks - orange chocolate flavoured Baileys, lime Smirnoff etc. Bluffing the likes of these will be near impossible, so you'll likely need to buy the top brand. But for the rest; I got your back. I'll keep your secret if you keep mine xx
p.s. Two years ago I tried my nannie's knock-off Baileys recipe. If you'd like to try your hand at it, please do! It's incredible and you wouldn't know the difference. I'll be trying a vegan version of it this year, in a very small batch. Because it could either turn out vegan marvelous, or hella wrong.