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November 2013

Jameson, Redbreast, Green Spot, Midleton Very Rare, Powers John Lane, Paddy: These Irish whiskeys and more are all made at one distillery: Midleton in County Cork, Ireland. On a recent trip the distillery for a big celebration (I wrote about that here), I learned more about the differences between various products, and gained some perspective on where Irish whiskey sits in with other products. To hugely oversimplify what are the constants and what changes in different types of whiskey: Single-malt scotch whisky is made from 100% malted barley and distilled in pot stills. They typically make one distillate, and the... Read more →

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

Update: Jared Anderson also won the national championship, and thus a trip to Iceland! See below for his winning recipe. Last night five bartenders competed in the San Francisco regionals of the Pavan Sangria Challenge. These were whittled down from many online entries to the final five by none other than Gaz Regan. This cocktail contest is interesting not only in that it's a sangria contest (playing to Pavan's South of France, hot-beachy roots) but also because the prize is determined by the winner. Bartenders chose a dream destination and had to make a sangria that embodied that trip. After... Read more →

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

A couple of months ago I returned to the Midleton distillery in Cork, Ireland, for a party they were throwing to celebrate the newly-expanded facility. I wrote a one-page story about it for November's issue of Tasting Panel magazine, which you can read here (digital magazine, go to page 149), but I have more to say than just that. I last visited the Midleton distillery in early 2011 (as well a a stop into the former distillery and current visitor's experience in Dublin). A write-up on that visit is here on Alcademics. The Midleton Distillery looks like it did a... Read more →

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

The receiving department here at Alcademics Global World Headquarters has been working overtime this week accepting deliveries. Here are the new booze arrivals: The Ministry of Rum Collection Vikingfjord Vodka Damoiseau Rhum Agricole ArteNOM Tequilas Auchentoshan Virgin Oak Bowmore Devil's Casks Glen Garioch Virgin Oak Blue Chair Bay Rums Cornelius Cherry Flavored Brandy Rekorderlig Hard Cider p.s. The image retouching department has been sacked. Read more →

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

This post was sponsored by PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur but written by me. PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur plays up its versatility as a cocktail mixer, so let's do a cocktail thought experiment to see how it fits into cocktails from day to night. PAMA is a bit unique for a liqueur in that it is both sweet and sour, so you can't always swap it out 1 for 1 with another liqueur. In fact, as they recommend on the website, to add PAMA to a base cocktail that has a sweet and sour element, all you need to do is cut back... Read more →

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

For years, brunch bars and restaurants have offered Build Your Own Bloody Mary bars, where drinkers get a glass with vodka in it then can help themselves to the juices and mixers at a salad bar of sorts. But in this era of custom ordering cocktails, I think the concept can be extended. In a recent story for FSR Magazine, an industry publication for full service restaurants, I cover what some restaurants are doing and propose some suggestions. Various restaurants around the US are doing Build Your Own: Champagne Cocktail Bellini Boozy Lemonade Martini (your choice of bitters) Plus other... Read more →

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

As part of their "What Are You Drinking?" series, Serious Eats: Drinks asked me some questions about what I am drinking lately. I give a few thoughts on mezcal, sherry, armagnac, bars I like to visit, trend predictions, and stuff like that. Check it out over at Serious Eats. Read more →

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

I received the new cocktail menu from Brandon Wise of Imperial in Portland, Oregon and noticed that it has the following drink on it: Slings and Arrows: Dewars blended scotch, Lemonhart Demerara rum, Lemon, Mulled pinot noir syrup, Tony's homemade switchel. The last ingredient was described as, "House-made switchel, also known as swizzle or haymaker’s punch. A long forgotten ingredient, Wise’s nostalgic resurrection of this carbonated cross between sweet tea and apple cider is an appreciated addition to Imperial’s ingredient list." So, a switchel sounds a lot like a shrub, a (usually) fruit-and-vinegar syrup. I followed up with Wise to... Read more →

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