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cocktails

Plymouth Gin Pour Off, Part 2

Photography by Mayaan Ben-Artzi

Wow, that was one dark video. I can assure you that things (including me) looked much better in real life--nothing became that pixelated until much later in the night.


Gin and Tonics: The Great Tonic Showdown

One of the recent warm evenings, I decided to pit the two boutique tonic waters now on the market head-to-head. Fever-Tree has been available for more than a year, but Q is just coming into the market and I was sent a sample last week.



Both are trying to make the experience of that classic drink, the gin and tonic, better by improving the oft-neglected role of the mixer. Fever-Tree is made in England, with ingredients sourced from around the world. Q is made, best I can tell, in New York. The gin?

Martinis: Shaken V. Stirred



The science in this article, which claims that a shaken martini has a measurable advantage in salubriousness over a stirred one, seems highly dubious to me. The article recaps the findings of some British scientists (who probably have too much time on their hands) reviewing research done in 1999 by some Canadian ones (who definitely have too much time on their hands):

A Cucumber Vodka Cocktail: The Watermelon Refresher

Cucumber, perhaps my favorite vegetable, is the supreme food for summer. Light, crisp, a mixture of sweet and bitter, cucumber is just made for eating … and drinking. As my colleague Sara Deseran pointed out last week in her Bits and Bites posting, Square One, the locally masterminded organic vodka company, has just released its cucumber-flavored vodka, and it's a winner. Normally, I don't get particularly excited about flavored vodkas, but this one is novel and very well made.

Tony Abou-Ganim's Cable Car: A Signature SF Drink

Last night was the kick-off event for cocktail week. It took place at the Starlight Room, where many of SF's best and brightest (like Marco Dionysus, pictured here) got behind the bar, making drinks for the masses.

Mojito Kits: A Lovely Idea, But the Reality...

This is how the p.r. query read for this summer's release of the 10 Cane rum mojito kit: "This summer, 10 CANE presents a limited-edition 10 CANE Mojito Kit that allows aspiring mixologists to enjoy fresh notes of mint, sugar cane and lime juice at home without the hassle of muddling, cleanup, and embarrassing mint stuck in their guests’ teeth. Just fill glasses with ice, add contents, stir and ... remove shoes."


Antique Ice Crusher: My New Favorite Toy



If you see something like this, buy it. My friend Lisa found this in some of her old stuff and knew that it was some sort of bar or culinary implement, but she didn't know exactly what it was. I instantly recognized it as an old-fashioned ice crusher and gladly took it in. The thing works wonderfully, in seconds pulverizing dozens of hard cubes into a finely crushed texture. I've seen them in antique stores all over, for cheap.

The Corpse Reviver Cocktail: Morning of the Living Dead

Most mornings, my wife, Christie, likes to sleep in. She works late into the night, so it's understandable, yet at the same time she does often need some encouragement to emerge from the cozy confines of the covers. Today, it was especially difficult for her to get up, since we had stayed up late talking. At a certain hour, I came in and joked to her resistant ears that she resembled a corpse and I’d decided to make her a Corpse Reviver to help her get out of bed. A drink first catalogued in the Savoy book by Harry Craddock, it's a strong, hair-of-the-dog type of concoction. I thought it would be just the thing.

Anchor Brewing and Buena Vista at SFO

Going through airports is as bad as it’s ever been. I don't mind taking off my shoes in security--it's the belt that's annoying. One thing that's made flying better, however, is the appearance of local food and beverage vendors in the terminals. I noted this trend a decade ago in my native Austin, TX, as its then-new airport sported such local favorites as Matt's Famous El Rancho (Tex-Mex), Schlotzsky's (sandwiches) and the ever-popular Salt Lick BBQ, whose airport location is closer to the original restaurant (and its pit) than downtown Austin is, so you know the meat is fresh.
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