Brandy may be scarce on many of today’s cocktail menus, but it’s really the OG spirit of classic cocktails, and we think it deserves a bit of a Renaissance. Brandies of various kinds were distilled throughout the American northeast before Whiskey was ever even dreamed up farther inland, fueling the livers of the revolution and eventually making some of the first cocktails. Old school drinks that we generally associate with whiskey, like an old fashioned or Sazerac, were originally made with brandy, before changing national tastes made American whiskey the barrel aged spirit du jour.
Recently we've been fans of simple cocktails - just look at Melissa's incredibly fun and practical post on "no math" cocktails. Complex and elaborate cocktails will always have a special place in our hearts, but sometimes something that's quick and easy is just the ticket. But that doesn't mean that we can't expect a lot out of our simple cocktails! Quite the opposite - simple but uncompromising cocktails is one of out favorite challenges.Read more →
I recently had an epiphany. A customer asked how he could easily increase the number of cocktails in his home bar repertoire but still genuinely wow his friends. I started to write out a list of my favorite recipes and quickly noticed a pattern emerging. It hit me: all the drinks I make on a regular basis, at least the way I make them, use absolutely no fractions. Not necessarily equal parts but whole parts. Keeping things simple allows me to whip up stylish drinks without a lot of fuss.Read more →
While there aren’t exactly any definitive laws that say a cocktail must be shaken or stirred, there are a lot of damn good reasons why some drinks are mixed one way and not the other. Let’s break it down.Read more →
Recently I was helping a friend come up with a cocktail of his wedding - he wanted something gin based, with lots of flavors of pine and other California rooted flavors. I set off experimenting with different vermouths, teas, fresh infusion, etc. And while I was getting close to the flavors he wanted, the end result always tasted somehow not complete. Like something was too thin and hollow. Many of us who experiment with cocktail recipes know all too well the frustration of feeling like the cocktail is almost there - but somehow held back from being fully realized.Read more →