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September 2008
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November 2008

October 2008

Last week, the day after WhiskyFest when I didn't really need to be drinking any more, I boarded a bus for an 11-hour tiki tour as part of Tiki Crawl 8. Actually, it was only one of the four days of Tiki Crawl- the East Bay day. There was also a South Bay, San Francisco, and a cool-down potluck. Believe you me, one day was enough. We started our journey at the Phoenix Hotel, the sponsor hotel for the crawl, at 3PM. We loaded up the bus and first headed to Forbidden Island in Alameda. The bus was loaded with... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

Whisky Wonderland

Finally I'm getting around to a wrap-up of WhiskyFest in San Francisco. The event itself was well-run, not too crowded, and with plenty of food out to keep people relatively sane (or it seemed like it anyway, I smartly ate a huge burrito just before coming so that I wouldn't need to stop drinking to eat). As I did last year, this year I stayed on the floor the whole time, missing all of the talks, and instead talking to people I know and distillers and brand reps at the booths. In the last half hour though, people got a... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

I am catching up on blogging several events that took place last week. Here's one of them. I attended a Four Roses tasting event with Master Distiller Jim Rutledge at Bouron & Branch. Four Roses has only recently become available in California, and is landing with a bang. Products hitting the market are the Straight Bourbon ("yellow label") at $19.99, the Small Batch at $35.99, and Single Barrel at $41.99. The prices are not bad, and this stuff is hugely drinkable. Rutledge told us about the brand, and why we haven't had it in the US for so long. The... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

Tablehopper gets the scoop on a new bar/restaurant coming from Thad Vogler: Bar Agricole. Slated to open in San Francisco in March 2009, it will feature all non-commercially distilled artisan spirits. (Plus food and wine, if you care.) I haven't yet made it to Camino, where he's been since opening Beretta (he gets around), but he runs a similar cocktail program there. Vogler has been moving in an increasingly local/sustainable direction, without sacrificing drink quality but increasingly limiting drink options. And now some of those options will be home grown. Tablehopper reports that he'll have patio garden for herbs and... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

I have a story in the latest issue of Malt Advocate- my first one for them. Hooray! It's a round-up of whisky events at Tales of the Cocktail and the increased presence of whisky at the event in general. Run screaming to your local newsstand and read it. You'll find my story right beneath the picture of Lew Bryson. Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

Glossy Booze is a round-up of booze stories in magazines. - 7X7 has a story on wine glasses, Jordan Mackay's favorite wines of 2008, and another on how sommeliers are making their own wines. - Best Life (September) has a story on the Green Drinks happy hour events. In October, they have a story Jerald O'Kennard from the Beverage Tasting Institute's top picks. - Sunset has a story on Scott Beattie's fall drink picks, San Diego's suds scene, and big red wines. - Bon Appetit lists some wine from red and blue states, reviews The Wine Snob's Dictionary ,and lists... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

The Gentleman's Companion by Charles H. Baker is one of the most entertaining historical cocktail books, if not always the most useful. It contains cocktail recipes gathered from Baker's travels around the world, but the best parts are the drink introductions and settings. Like this one: THE JAMAICAN BLACK STRIPE, another Heartener from that Tropical Paradise, that May Be Served either Hot or Cold If served cold: work 2 tsp strained honey into 1 tbsp boiling water until well dissolved. Add 1 jigger Jamaica rum, shake with cracked ice, pour into stemmed cocktail glass and dust with nutmeg. Furnished us... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

Lost and Found

WhiskyFest on Friday night was a big event at which I felt like a big lame-o. I saw nearly everyone I had seen on Wednesday night in one or more of the four bars I visited in which I lost my camera. I contacted all the bars asking if they'd seen it, and all said no. The word was out: Camper can't keep track of his stuff. It was like riding the bus home at 9AM in last night's clothes. The walk of shame. But perhaps my public humiliation and expressions of deep regret shifted some karma in my favor,... Read more →

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.