Batter Licker

June 13, 2012

manhattan with maraschino liqueur and bourbon-bathed cherry (not to mention cherry-infused bourbon)

Do you ever make cocktails at home? I’ve been mixing up gin and tonics for years – requires a LOT of skill, like opening a bottle of tonic water, pouring that and some gin over ice, squeezing in a lime, and stirring. So maybe it’s not really all that skilled after all.

But I only started attempting anything beyond that about a year and a half ago when, inspired by a tequila-based cocktail I had enjoyed at Tres (back then, Tres Agaves), I decided to put a fresh twist on the processed sweetener (grapefruit soda) by substituting juice from a freshly squeezed-by-me grapefruit and club soda. My version of La Paloma set in motion an exploration of cocktails that hasn’t stopped since.

From sparkling vodka elderflower lemonade and apple brandy limeade to a gin-based version of a dark ‘n stormy (or, depending on how you look at it, a ginger beer/ale version of a gin and tonic) and creamy candy cane cocktail, you might think me a purveyor of purely clear liquors.

The cucumber infusion that wound up as my bride’s specialty cocktail and the lemon peel and vodka infusion that became limoncello after a few months would do nothing to convince you otherwise.

However, in real life, I dabble in the brown stuff more often than the clear.

On Saturday, I spoke on a BlogHer Food Conference panel about the resurgence and modernization of vintage recipes. During the panel, I gave a longer-than-it-should-have-been-because-my-hands-were-shaking-and-ohmygosh-how-do-I-answer-questions-while-simultaneously-keeping-track-of-what-I’m-mixing demo on how to make two versions of the timeless (and my favorite) Manhattan cocktail.

I learned that: (more…)

April 6, 2012

rye croutons

There’s been a lot of hubbub in San Francisco about finally having a Legitimate Jewish Deli, in the form of Wise Sons‘ Mission district location.

I have two thoughts on that:

(1) These people clearly haven’t been to Moishe’s Pippic in Hayes Valley, which has been serving phenomenal corned beef, pastrami and (on Fridays and Saturdays only) brisket for quite awhile now; and

(2) The rye bread at Wise Sons is transformative, at least as far as this longtime Rye-Hater is concerned.

Wise Sons’ rye bread is absolutely worth the annoyance of trying to find a parking spot in the Mission on a weekend afternoon. Hypothetically, I think it’s even worth waiting in the horrendously long line that wraps around the corner starting at 11 a.m. on weekends, when Wise Sons starts serving their infamous Reuben sandwiches. And I say “hypothetically” because of this very-exciting-to-me-now-that-I-know-it fact: (more…)

Powered by WordPress