Beautiful Combinations: Tequila & Chartreuse

Posted in Editor's Notes, Recipes on July 29th, 2011 by Josh

I have a confession to make. I don’t love tequila.

I know. “For shame!” you shout. “Blasphemy!” But it’s true. All things being equal, I would always prefer a cocktail with gin, rum or whisky over the agave spirits (which includes mezcal as well…gasp!) It may be that my palette tends more towards the sweet or bitter vs. the savory flavor or smokiness of tequila. Or it may be that many years ago, at my 22nd birthday bash, a kind benefactor started buying my friends and I shots of tequila to celebrate (no doubt the best brand available at our college-town dive bar), and I ended the night sicker than I had ever been (or since).

So maybe my dislike isn’t fair. Of course I know that there are far superior brands than the one that ruined the day after my 22nd birthday. In my defense, I’ve been working to break myself of this dislike, and I’ve found a terrific way to easy myself back in. The beautiful combination that is tequila and green chartreuse.
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Tags: Adam Ramsey, celery bitters, dry vermouth, Green Chartreuse, lime, Mayahuel, mint, sotol, tequila

The Manhattan Cocktail Classic

Posted in Events on May 22nd, 2010 by Josh

MCC Gala EntranceI know, I know. Once again, I’ve fallen way behind on my writing. But there have been some exciting events over the past few weeks, and I want to give you a quick update. I promise to try to get some new drinks up very soon, too.

Let’s start, though, with a quick recap of the Manhattan Cocktail Classic. Described as “part festival, part fête, part conference, part cocktail party,” the Manhattan Cocktail Classic included five days of seminars, parties, tastings, and other assorted revelry with some of my favorite people in all of New York City. Read More

Tags: angostura bitters, honey, lemon, lime, mcc, pineapple juice, rum, scotch

Queens Park Swizzle

Posted in Recipes on June 17th, 2009 by Josh

Ingredients for a Queens Park SwizzleLast week, I told you about a mistake I made in preparing the Queens Park Swizzle (I used gin instead of rum, but I learned a lesson!) Well, since I teased you with one of my favorite rum cocktails, I thought it was time we walked through it for real.

A quick aside: this is the first cocktail I ever had prepared for me at a “real” cocktail bar – Milk & Honey (of London and New York City fame). Milk & Honey is largely credited (and rightfully so) with reigniting the love for the classic cocktail in New York, and whether or not that’s true, they definitely lit the spark in me. The staff and Milk & Honey are infamous for matching their customers with their ideal cocktail. Before serving you, they ask insightful questions about preferred spirits, flavors, and even mood. The first time I went to Milk & Honey, this is the cocktail they prepared for me, so it will always hold a special place in my heart :-) Read More

Tags: angostura bitters, club soda, cocktail, lime, milk and honey, mint, rum, simple syrup

A Day Like Today Calls for a Dark and Stormy

Posted in Recipes on June 15th, 2009 by Josh

Ingredients for a Dark and StormyThere’s currently a thunderstorm raging outside my window, so it’s not all that difficult to figure out why I decided to whip up a Dark and Stormy cocktail tonight. When the rain is pelting your windows, nothing will whisk you away (mentally, anyway) faster than rum and ginger beer.

This one is really as simple as it gets. Here’s what you’re going to need: Read More

Tags: cocktail, ginger beer, lime, rum

Celebrating International Cachaça Day with the Royalton Caipirinha

Posted in Recipes on June 12th, 2009 by Josh

Today is International Cachaça Day. Who knows where these things come from, but I’ll take any excuse to make a cocktail! (Actually we do know – International Cachaça Day was started by Sociedade Brasileira da Cachaça, a Brazilian government organization. It was created to commemorate June 12th, 1744: the day when Portugal, then the colonial authority in Brazil, outlawed the production and selling of cachaça. Duh.)

Ingredients for a Royalton CaipirinhaCachaça is a distillation of sugarcane juice, which makes it something of a cousin to rum. Most cachaça is produced in Brazil (where it is incredibly popular). The most common use you’ll find of cachaça is the Caipirinha. The caipirinha is the national drink of Brazil, and is to cachaça what the mojito is to rum (in that both contain the spirit, sugar, and lime, and both are very over-produced.)

So while I’m not a fan of over-produced drinks, I do like creative variations. The folks at Cabana cachaça suggested the Royalton Caipirinha, a cocktail developed at Bar 44 at the Royalton Hotel here in New York City. Read More

Tags: Cabana, cachaça, caipirinha, lime, simple syrup, St. Germain, stawberry

The Tramp

Posted in Recipes on June 8th, 2009 by Josh

Ingredients for The Tramp cocktailThose of you who know me well, know that my father is a die-hard fan of Frank Sinatra. And as much as I tried to prevent it from happening as a child, my father’s love of the Chairman of the Board has been passed down to me. So when I heard the waitress at Raines Law Room mention a cocktail called The Tramp while listing their specials a little while back, I’ll admit, the lyrics “She gets to hungry / for dinner at eight…” started playing in my head immediately. Thus, I had to try the drink.

The Tramp is a simple, tasty little cocktail. Here’s what you’re going to need. Read More

Tags: apricot brandy, club soda, cocktail, gin, lime, raines law room, sloe gin

Why There’s No Such Thing as a Mistake

Posted in Editor's Notes on June 4th, 2009 by Josh

A King's Park Swizzle?Well sure, mistakes exist. But as far as I’m concerned, not when it comes to mixing cocktails. Just as in the culinary arts, recipes are templates. They’re guidelines that reflect the goals and tastes of the artist, but they’re never carved in stone. The purpose of the resulting dish (or cocktail, in our case) is to be enjoyed, and one must always adjust accordingly.

The other night, I set out to make a Queens Park Swizzle – one of my favorite rum-based cocktails – which I was preparing to introduce to you here. However, what I ended up making was a mixture of lime, sugar, mint, angostura bitters (all of which belong), and gin (which most certainly does not). I poured gin instead of rum by mistake. The funny thing about it is that I was already a sip or two into the drink before I realized it (I swear, I wasn’t drunk!) Read More

Tags: angostura bitters, experimentation, gin, lime, mint, mixology, simple syrup