Last weekend, we had our first snow here in New York City. It was a bitter, windy night on Saturday when I wandered into one of my favorite bars, chilled to the bone. This bar has an amazing cocktail menu, blending the best of classic cocktails and modern mixology, but as much as I wanted a drink, the idea of something shaken with ice at the moment was almost unbearable. What I wanted was a hot toddy. Read More
This evening, my friend Laren (@sweetblogomine) and I joined Jonathan Pogash for his Cocktail Lab class at the Astor Center Lounge. I’ve mentioned Jonathan here before (he was the source for our post on the Maple Plum Sparkler), but to refresh your memory, Jonathan is a cocktail development consultant, and the beverage director for Hospitality Holdings (which manages a number of major bars here in New York, including the Campbell Apartment and Bookmarks Lounge).
I’ve taken a number of classes at Astor Center in the past, and they’ve all offered an opportunity to learn a great deal from some of the country’s most talented mixologists. Be sure to check out their full calendar; if you’re in the area, I highly encourage you to give one a try. Jonathan’s class is actually offered monthly, so you can definitely take that one. If you’re just starting out, I’d suggest the Home Bar Basics course. Read More
The other day I sent an e-mail to our friend Jonathan Pogash, renowned bartender, beverage director for Hospitality Holdings (World Bar, Campbell Apartment, et al), and head of the USBG chapter here in New York City. I was writing just to ask Jonathan a quick question, and as it turns out, he’s out of town this week. But Jonathan – never one to let a customer go thirsty – left cocktail recipes in his out of office message! Needless to say, this was one of the best out of office messages I’ve ever seen (and that’s after more than a decade working in the tech industry.) Read More
The Sazerac is one of the oldest cocktails on record – and supposedly the first cocktail invented in America. It came into being in New Orleans, Louisiana in the 1830’s, and was originally made with cognac and Peychaud bitters (created by Antoine Amédée Peychaud). The Peychaud bitters are still a key ingredient, but the most common preparation of the cocktail is now with rye rather than cognac (even though our friend @halw likes to mess with bartenders by ordering it with cognac anyway.)
I came late to the Sazerac, but was introduced to it by another friend, @livethelushlife, who counts the Sazerac among her absolute favorite cocktails. And it really came to life for me when I had the chance to sample the cocktail in its native environment – New Orleans – where the Sazerac is still an institution. Read More
Anyone who reads this blog knows that I’m a big fan of whisky – bourbon in particular. And in my mind, there’s no better bourbon cocktail than the Old Fashioned. Truly a classic (dating back to Harry Johnson’s recipes in 1888), and beautiful in its simplicity, the Old Fashioned adds some complexity with the inclusion of a small amount of sugar and bitters along with a twist of lemon and orange, but it still allows the unique flavor of whichever bourbon you’re using to shine through. As a result, I enjoy test driving new bourbons using this cocktail (after sampling them neat, of course!) Read More
It’s nearly impossible to pick a favorite cocktail from my week at Tales of the Cocktail. The choices were so varied and plentiful that narrowing down the list was a difficult task in and of itself. However, if I’m really honest with myself, one cocktail in particular rises to the top. It was prepared for my by Erin Williams, the Cointreau Brand Ambassador (formally of Pegu Club). In actuality, I’m not certain of the name of the cocktail, as it was custom made based on a survey I completed about my cocktail preferences (Tales was just so awesome!) I think the Rosemary Gin Sour adequately explains it though. Read More
The recipe for this cocktail is long overdue. I’ve been wanting to reconstruct it since I first tried it at the Gramercy Tavern a few months ago. I’ll skip the excuses and get right down to business, with the exception of saying the following: make this cocktail. You won’t be sorry.
The Cruzan Silver Greyhound follows that premise with two minor variations: the addition of a little sugar, and the critical addition of grapefruit bitters. If you don’t have any grapefruit bitters, you can order them online (Amazon). They play a huge role in giving this cocktail the depth that sets it apart from the standard Greyhound. Read More