Bitter Last Words

A friend recently mentioned how one crafty bartender had treated her to his bitter variation of the Last Word, swapping Angostura for  gin in the  traditional recipe. I had to give it a try, and found it biting and aggressive in the nicest way, so I figure it’s worth passing along. Bitter Last Words 3/4 […]

Happy Bastille Day

The Bijou is a strong, herbaceous and decadent cocktail, which gets its name from the french word for jewel. It’s great to batch for your Bastille Day soiree, because all of the ingredients are shelf stable, so all you need to do at party time is measure three ounces over ice, stir and strain, or […]

Nocino Manhattan

A year ago, TSB and I ordered a crate of green walnuts to make nocino and vin de noix. A couple weeks ago, we finally strained the stuff and rebottled.  While the vin de noix wasn’t thrilling, the nocino is a treat! You can do a little shot as a digestif, but we liked it better […]

Bar Snack: Liptauer

Have I ever mentioned that I’ve mapped out the concept for my first cocktail bar?  As incredibly pretentious as it sounds, the theme is Freudian, fin-de-siecle Vienna, but way more fun and playful than that makes it seem. I won’t get into it more than that, because I have surely horrified you, but one of […]

Homemade Bitters

I’m setting out to divine my own recipes for cocktail bitters, so the first logical step was to start with a standard, traditional recipe before branching out to make my own magical concoctions. I have plans for a batch of smoked lemon bitters, and maybe some barrel aged banana bitters for tropical tiki drinks, so […]

Maraschino Cherries

The florescent pink orbs you find in jars at the supermarket are an affront to the proper cocktail. Rather than buying “maraschino cherries” from your grocer, buy firm, fresh cherries when they are in season, or a bag of dried bing cherries if you are too late, and then soak them in booze. Maraschino liqueur […]

Kumquat Marmalade

Fresh fruit and herbs are the best drink ingredients, but growing seasons can be short, while cocktail cravings last year-round, so the best compromise is to preserve fresh produce for later use. This approach also works if you have a surplus of fruit and want to use it over the next month or so, except […]