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Video Bartender: Fun-to-Know: Drinks and Cocktail Mixing

I've Netflixed other DVDs in the Fun-to-Know series before, and some are pretty awful. The house cleaning tips, in particular, features sexy girls getting soapy and not really cleaning anything. Entertaining, yes. Educational, no.

This one, Fun-to-Know: Drinks & Cocktail Mixing, did not feature sexy bartendresses covered in sticky grenadine, but bartender Thomas Bitler showing us how to make drinks. It's divided into sections on "mixed drinks," shooters, blender drinks, and non-alcoholic drinks.

Most of the drinks he demonstrates are mind-numbingly simple- vodka tonics, gin and tonics, rum and Cokes, etc., that you need only read the name for the recipe. The video is also short on explanation or much instruction. The pieces of wisdom he imparts are such nuggets as how the Long Island Iced Tea gets its name from the color of the drink, who Shirley Temple was, and this gem: "Do not dip your hand into the ice- it WILL get cold."

Then there are a few problems with a few of the drinks- he calls for "sweetened lime juice" (read: Rose's) and bottled sour mix. He demonstrates four different martinis- one each of vodka and gin for each of "dry" and "extra-dry" where he shows you how to swirl the bottle of vermouth around the glass without pouring any in.

That said, there isn't too much wrong with the video (other than his Cosmopolitan recipe, which is basically a Cape Cod served up) for the non-cocktail snob crowd. (Then again, I think Rose's should be made illegal.) Still, even if you're too lazy to squeeze limes and like your Manhattan served on the rocks, there isn't anything on this video you needed to see rather than just picking up a recipe book instead.

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