Friday, May 30, 2008
Thursday, May 29, 2008
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Monday, May 19, 2008
Here was I ended up drinking to get my act back together:
6 oz. beer
3 oz. tomato juice
3 oz. orange juice
4 hits Tabasco
juice of 1/2 lime
...feeling much better now.
Saturday, May 17, 2008
I call Mr. Nichol this not just because of his career here, but because of his style of doing business. Lets look at what the modern San Francisco bar has in common with him:
- Unique Spirits. Pisco was clearly not a widespread bar product in the US. There was plenty here because of the all the South American miners chasing gold, but it definitely was not a sweeping trend. Modern San Francisco bartenders are quite well known for doing the same. Have you seen how much Creole Shrubb is being poured?
- Housemade Product. Nichol made his own pineapple gomme and kept his recipe secret. While we are not so concerned about protecting our tricks, you are not a serious bar if you don't make at least some of your own stuff these days.
- Citrus. We like our juice out here on the Left Coast, 'nuff said.
PS. I just realized I put the pics on the wrong post. Here they are.
Friday, May 16, 2008
Thursday, May 15, 2008
Afterwards we had a solid lunch (yup, po boy number 3 for me) at Café Maspero and headed out for more drinkin'. Fortunately, we had a respectable plan, a New Orleans Original Cocktail Tour with Mr. Joe Gendusa. Joe himself is the original, a native, from the family that perfected the bread for my beloved po boys. Rather than give a total spoiler for the tour, I will just say that it is in itself, worth the cost of the whole trip. Joe walked us through a three and a half hour documentary on one of the most intriguing cities in the Country. The one highlight I will share relates to the pic above. As we were walking the last bar on our tour. Joe stops in front this building and tells us in a very reverential tone that without this building, we would not be together at that moment. This was the site of the Sazerac Coffee House, the birthplace of the cocktail. I had walked by this building a couple of times each day since I had been there and had no idea... I almost cried.
The quote that endeared this man to me forever: "This is not just a tour for me. This is my home."
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
Day 3: The Pain Begins.
I was quite hungover on Saturday and there was no relief to be had. A group of us headed to Mothers for brunch. It was hot and there was a longish line so I was quite worried about my ability to make through till an owner type popped out and suggested we come on in and get some bloody marys to keep us busy while we were in line...marvelous. I had po boy number 2 (for those of you keeping count) and did me just right. Refreshed, we did a little hat shopping and Meyer the Hatter (great!), bought some Gold Bond and wound out way to the Swizzle Stick Bar at the Cafe Adelaide. I had a couple of fabulous Whiskey Smashes courtesy of Kevin who was kind enough to recommend them even though his ice crusher was down and he had to break cubes by hand in a bag with his muddler. Other drinks sampled (House Swizzle, Julep, Pisco Sour, Sidecar) were all a tad on the sweet side for me, but that seems to be the way of it in New Orleans. I can tell many bartenders want to make their drinks a bit more serious, but the American drinking public demands more sugar.
Thursday, May 08, 2008
I can attest to the truth of that. If you look closely at my pic over on the right, you will see me humping a barrel of this stuff.
It is mighty.
Wednesday, May 07, 2008
When I interviewed for my first job, one of the senior guys had me to his house for a reception. He offered me a cigarette and pointed me to a bowl of whiskey sours, like I was Darrin Stephens and he was Larry Tate. I can still remember that first tight little swallow and my gratitude that I could go back for a refill without looking like a drunk. I came to admire the host over the next decade, but he never gave me the recipe. So I use this: • For every 750-ml bottle of whiskey (use a decent bourbon or rye), add: • 6 oz fresh-squeezed, strained lemon juice 6 oz simple syrup (mix superfine sugar and water in equal quantities)
To serve: Shake 3 oz per person with ice and strain into chilled cocktail glasses. Garnish with a cherry and an orange slice or, if you're really slick, a float of red wine. (Pour about 1/2 oz slowly into each glass over the back of a spoon; this is called a New York sour, and it's great.)
Monday, May 05, 2008
1/2 oz. Creme de Violette
1/2 oz. Absinthe
5 oz. Sparkling Wine
garnish with brandied cherry
I try to float to the Absinthe on top, eventually it will diffuse and look like this, but before that happens, it looks pretty fantastic.