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March 2013

Photo: Bartholomew Cooke for LA Times Magainze Smoke has been a big flavor trend in cocktails for seveal years, with people reaching for Islay whisky and mezcal, and blowing smoke into all sorts of mixers and even ice. And while we've always had smoky flavors in barbecue, it seems the food folks are amping up this flavor trend as well. The trendiest cooking technique for restaurants these days seems to be open fire cooking, found at places like Ox in Portland and the forthcoming TBD by the folks from AQ in San Francisco. Everything cooked in those places has a... Read more →

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

A bottled glog came out this winter and I wasn't too excited about that until I learned how it was made. Many European countries have traditions of hot wine drinks in the winter, often mulled with spices, and sometimes fortified with brandy or other distilled spirits. Geijer Glogg, though, is made in California at the St. George Spirits distillery, and it's not just wine + spirits + spices in a bottle. That would be the easy way. St. George Spirits was founded as a brandy distillery and they apply brandy-making techniques to many products. According to Martin Geijer, founder of... Read more →

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

Look at this sexy and delicious drink by Johnny Raglin of Comstock Saloon. Just look at it! That lime twist is like the Loch Ness monster! Drink it if you dare! Actually the drink is pretty simple and delicious. It is made with pisco, St. Germain elderflower liqueur, apricot brandy, lemon, and egg white. Raglin texted me the recipe, because apparently he is a 23 year old and doesn't believe in email anymore. In the foam atop the drink he has sprinkled dehydrated Campari sugar; a trick I first saw and loved in Vancouver. It adds a nice crunch amidst... Read more →

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

Recently on Facebook, I was engaged in a mostly-healthy debate about giving recipe credit on cocktail menus. Rye's cocktail menu from 2007 When we see a classic cocktail section of a cocktail menu, we know that the drinks in that section have not been invented in-house. But some cocktail menus are a single list of both classics and house creations, and that's where things get complicated. I have seen many cocktail menus that list modern classic cocktails like the Penicillin by Sam Ross and the Old Cuban by Audrey Saunders with no mention of the drink creators' names. When the... Read more →

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

Michael Lazar at Hog & Rocks has introduced a new mini-menu to their cocktail program featuring the Old Fashioned made with different spirits and accent ingredients. PIMP MY OLD FASHIONED Bittered Sling (Eric Adkins) $16 Ch. briat hors d’age armagnac, gum syrup, bitters, grated nutmeg Anticuado $16 Casa noble reposado, agave gum syrup, orange bitters Oaxaca (Phil Ward) $16 Tres agaves reposado, del maguey ‘minero’ mezcal, agave gumsyrup, grapefruit bitters Kingston $12 Appleton estate 12 yr rum, sugar cane syrup, chocolate &orange bitters The Willet 8 $ 15 H&R willet 8 yr barrel strength bourbon, gum syrup, orangebitters House Rock... Read more →

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

That was the surprising message of a little talk I attended about Tanqueray Malacca. As you've likely heard by now, Tanqueray has released a single batch of Malacca, a gin they produced years ago but then took off the market. They replaced it with Tanqueray Ten as they didn't want to have two line extensions to market at the same time. This was long before today's gin boom, of course, when there were only a few new gins hitting store shelves. Malacca had many fans, however, and even though the product was no longer sold, there were plenty of bottles... Read more →

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

South at SF Jazz in the brand new SFJAZZ Center opens March 5th with "craft cocktails from the old south" by Bar Director Erik Adkins of Slanted Door, Wo Hing General Store, Heaven's Dog, and the forthcoming Hard Water. I'm excited to try the Battle of New Orleans (I love anise), Horse Thief Cocktail, and State Street Cocktail. Below is the menu. The Battle of New Orleans Buffalo Trace Bourbon, gum syrup, with dashes of anisette, absinthe and Peychaud’s and orange bitters on a hand cut ice cube. Tchoupitoulas Street Guzzle El Dorado 3yr rum, lime, Blenheim hot ginger beer,... Read more →

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