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When bars began rolling out drink programs with cocktails on tap and bottled cocktails a few years ago, one big question was whether they'd start hiring less knowledgeable bartenders because they wouldn't need to do any high-level mixology anymore. So far the question has been moot because every bar (that I've seen anyway) that offers these pre-batched cocktails also lists made-fresh ones on the menu as well. Until now. Two new venues have opened where all the drinks are made in advance. At the end of November, Michael Mina 74 at Fontainebleau Miami Beach opened with a menu listing only... Read more →

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

In a slideshow for Popular Science, I wrote about ten pieces of bar equipment you not know about as they're hidden behind the scenes. The story includes equipment used by some of the world's most innovate bartenders and includes equipment including rotovaps, machine-engraved ice, sous-vide cooking, and many others. Check it out on PopSci.com! Read more →

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

In my latest post for Details.com, I took a look at the multitude of ways that people are using breakfast cereal in cocktails. Initially I thought I'd only find it in a few places but I think there are more than a dozen mentioned in the story and they're located everwhere from London to Bordeaux to Miami to San Diego. Some folks are serving them up in bowls with a spoon, while others are infusing cereal into milk or directly into liquor. Check it out over at Details.com. Read more →

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

This week was the announcement that a new brand from New Zealand was hitting the market in Florida: Stolen Coffee & Cigarettes Spiced Rum. Stolen is "...infused fine Caribbean rum with natural roasted coffee beans and tobacco flavors, delivering a unique style of spiced rum." This comes on the heels of Ivanabitch vodka's two flavors: "Ivanabitch Traditional Tobacco Vodka features a bold taste of smoky vanilla blended with sweet caramel. The Menthol Tobacco Vodka features the same taste as the Traditional Tobacco Vodka with a hint of mint." One liqueur that's been on the market for a while (though I've... 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.

image from wikipedia If you're using barrels or wood chips to make barrel-aged cocktails, be aware that they can develop 246-TCA, better known as "cork taint." Cork taint doesn't only come from corks, it turns out; it can come from barrels. One way that it forms (in part) is when chlorine bleach is used to clean corks (or barrels). Wikipedia says, "Chlorinated phenols can form chemically when hypochlorous acid (HOCl-, one of the active forms of chlorine) or chlorine radicals come in contact with wood (untreated, such as barrels or pallets.) The use of chlorine or other halogen-based sanitizing agents... Read more →

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

Earlier this week during Toronto Cocktail Week at the Drake Hotel, Joaquin Simo of Pouring Ribbons and I gave a talk about lower-alcohol cocktails called Full Flavour, Lower Proof. I attempted to make the world's ugliest PowerPoint presentation to accompany the talk, and I think I did a pretty good job. If you'd like to experience the joy and eye-ache that was the presentation, click through the images below. Read more →

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