Cocktail nerds are abuzz these days with the news that the recipe for Noilly Prat vermouth has changed, as has the bottle. Word is that the American version, which was designed to be mixed into cocktails, will now be replaced with the European, which is more often sipped on its own and not mixed. It is said to be more intense and woody than the previous version. Spirit Me Away compares the old and new formulas.
The American Distilling Institute put together this great map of craft distillers in America. I'm not sure if it's limited to members or what the criteria is to be included, but regardless this is a very cool (and for me, very useful) way to find small distillers in different locations. On the website, clicking on the map will take you to a PDF file that links to each of the distilleries numbered.
Gourmet.com has a recipe for making gin out of vodka by infusing it with herbs and berries. I can't wait to try it. I also think this would make an excellent gift for the gin lover in your life: Hand him or her a bottle of vodka to make them squirm, then in the card that comes with it have all the herbs and the recipe in the envelope. Tee hee!
Check out this recipe for a relatively easy (no gum Arabic required!) bowl of Pisco Punch by the Pegu Club's Audrey Saunders. The recipe if for a bowl of punch but with the way it's put together you could make individual portions. It''s part of a series of holiday punches from New York Magazine. Mmm, Holiday pisco.
If you haven't already, check out Eric Felten's story tracing of the evolution of the drink from the Manhattan to the Martinez (the focus of the story, called the "missing link") to the Martini. Great stuff as always from Felten.
In the San Francisco Bay Guardian this week I have a story on some recommended bottles to pick up this winter season. Here's the picture.
Glossy Booze is a round-up of alcohol stories in glossy magazines. -Playboy (December) has a story on recommended bottles of scotch, divided into Speyside, island malt, Highlands, and blended whisky categories. There are recipes for the Roby Roy, Aberdeen Angus (scotch, honey, lime, Drambuie), and Black Jesus Shooters (one part Jagermeister to two parts scotch). Also in this issue, best winter brews. -Best Life (December/January) has a story by Sang Yoon (owner of Father's Office restaurants) on recommended champagnes. -Sunset (November, which just showed up to my house in December) has 10 wine-based mini-esapes. In the December issue, there are...
San Franciscans should immediately leave work and run screaming to their local newsbox to pick up this week's San Francisco Bay Guardian. Why? Because you'll find me waiting for you inside. In the Scene insert I have two stories. One of them is on some new recommended bottles of booze. The other is on new watering holes that have opened in the city this year. I realized that I've written the New Bars story for the past three years. Maybe it will be fun to compare my brilliant observations over the years. Let's find out: New Bars Story 2006 "At...