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November 2013
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December 2013

This post is part of a mini-project looking at sweet and sour elements in cocktails, sponsored by PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur. I'm rounding up some thoughts and conclusions for this mini project on sweetness and sourness in cocktails, and proposing some ideas for future study. In this project we looked at: A look at basic tastes including receptors on the tongue for sweet and sour. How sweetness is an innate craving and how that makes us seek it out in our food and drink. Understanding sourness and how we measure acidity using pH. Rounding up the lime-to-sugar aka the sour-to-sweet ratio... Read more →

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

This post is part of a mini-project looking at sweet and sour elements in cocktails, sponsored by PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur. In recent years, bartenders have discovered that lime juice for cocktails tastes best not when it is first squeezed, but several hours afterward, typically something like 4-6 hours old. I believe it was Dave Arnold who first discovered this. He was testing whether limes juiced in a machine versus hand-squeezed were better (hand-squeezed won), and also found that 4-hour-old juice from both squeezing methods tasted better than fresh lime juice from either method; a fascinating and completely non-intuitive bonus. Since... Read more →

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

Lynn House is the National Brand Ambassador for PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur. In this email interview she talks about staying healthy in the job, up-and-coming cocktail cities, developing drinks for national accounts, and her favorite bar tool. You sustained a pretty severe bartending injury a while back. Is there any advice you'd give bartenders on avoiding injury in the workplace, especially in the era of heavier shaking ice? Last year I sustained “bartender’s elbow”, ie Tennis Elbow or tendinitis. It was during the James Beard awards and I shook approximately 800 cocktails. It was incredibly painful and I had to wear... Read more →

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

The new Alcademics Global World Headquarters is fully operational and is no longer just a desk in my bedroom. It's now a desk in an office building. If you're in the business of mailing me stuff, please drop me a line and I'll send you the new address. As for the internet location, that's still the same: Alcademics.com. Read more →

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

On my last visit to the Buffalo Trace distillery in Kentucky, I took a very cool tour of the property that you can read about at that link. On a visit this past February as part of the Bourbon Classic event in Louisville, I had another tour that was completely different and I learned all new stuff. I never mind going to distilleries multiple times as there is always something new to pick up. Below are just some miscellaneous facts I picked up, rather than the whole picture. As it has been operating since 1787, Buffalo Trace is the oldest... Read more →

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

This post is part of a mini-project looking at sweet and sour elements in cocktails, sponsored by PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur. I asked bartenders on Facebook how they prepare their simplest Sour cocktail, like a Daiquiri, that calls for a base spirit, lime juice, and simple syrup. The goal was not just to get a Daiquiri recipe but the house standard measurements for Sour cocktails in general. I made sure to collect everyone's simple syrup recipe as that makes all the difference. The ratios are of sugar to water, so that 1:1 is equal parts by volume sugar and water, and... Read more →

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

I travel an awful lot and most of the time I'm bringing packing at least one bottle of liquor with me. (My record was 7 full bottles.) You can read about how much liquor you can pack in your luggage here, which differs per airline. I've never had a bottle of wine or spirits break in my luggage, and I'll chalk that up partially to good luck and partially to good packing. How to Pack Wine or Spirits Bottles in your Luggage Mini-bottles go in your shoes. Most people probably don't carry as many mini-bottles and flask-sized samples as I... Read more →

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

For the website WorldsBestBars.com I write up new (good) bars opening in San Francisco. For November I covered: The Cavalier, a fancy hotel bar/restaurant downtown Brass Tacks, the Hayes Valley bar in the former Marlena's Mikkeller Bar, a downtown beer bar where the staff are actually nice Check out the write-ups here. Related articles The 100% Pre-Batched Cocktail Menu Read more →

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