|Bar None Drink Recipes Newsletter|
Here we go again! Another Valentine's is just around the corner.
Check out last year's recipes here... This year's you'll find below in the newsletter.
I also working on attending the Bar and Nightclub Show in Vegas March 1-4. I'll keep you posted. If you are going to be there, please drop me a line and let me know
Please be smart, don't drink and drive! Enjoy the following recipes in moderation and take a cab if you need one.
Looking for a gift this Valentine's Day to let that someone special know how sweet you are on them? Treat your loved one to Norman Love Confections! With more than 35,000 individually hand-painted morsels created fresh daily, you'll have plenty of variety to choose from! Sweets include dark, white and milk chocolate, truffles, sugar-free treats, pralines, chocolate covered fruits and other scintillating morsels.
Chef, President and Founder Norman Love has spent his lifetime in the kitchen. After spending 13 years as overseer of the worldwide corps of pastry chefs at the Ritz-Carlton Hotels, Love created his company in 2001. Norman Love Confections' accolades include being named one of the top 10 artisan chocolate companies in the country by USA Today in 2002 and 2005, named in the top three confectioners by CNN/Money (2004) and Consumer Reports (2005), and selected as one of "10 star chocolate makers" by Saveur magazine in 2006.
Norman Love Confections are sculptures of art, coming in different colors, shapes and sizes. Each and every bite is made from only premium ingredients, and their shelf life lasts until about there weeks. Individual pieces generally cost under $2, with gift boxes ranging from $40 to $100. Whether you say it with a pistachio truffle, vanilla cupcake, éclaire or key lime pie, Valentine's Day is the perfect time to tell someone just how much you sweeten their life!
As if Norman Love Confections weren't enough of an indulgence for your Valentine, treat them to a top notch pairing to wash the sweets down with: Partida Tequila Anejo! For those tired of toasting with wine or champagne, Partida Tequila Anejo brings an extra special experience to dessert. Partida Tequila is an authentic estate-grown premium tequila, made from 100% blue agave in the heart of Mexico's historic tequila region. Partida Tequila Anejo is aged 18 months and exhibits a depth of flavor that is clean and full bodied. It is an intense golden color with ochre and copper tones and should be savored slowly, with a fruity aroma and flavors of spices and dried fruits and almond.
The extraordinary dark cocoa inside of Norman Love Confections highlights the cinnamon and butterscotch flavors of Partida Tequila Anejo. With a perfect pairing combination like this, your loved one will fall in love with you all over again!
Hello again, faithful subscribers to BarNoneDrinks. I hope the 2009 has started off as well as it can for all of you. With all of the wonderful economic news out there, I have often considered myself lucky to be able to enjoy something the way I enjoy booze. It is a hobby that is interesting and relaxing at the same time, and common ground can be found across many races and societies (though not religions, but ignore that...I'm getting wistful).
I was out for dinner the other day with a group of colleagues from my 9-to-5, and on a lark I ordered a mint julep. Astute and long term readers will note my earlier declarations of affinity for this particular cocktail, and so will be amazed as I was at how long it had been since I had imbibed one. After schooling the bartender (who wasn't old enough to have seen the original release of Return of the Jedi) on how to make the drink, I returned to my conversation to await my cocktail.
Soon enough I had the julep in front of me, and it was, much to my delight, well made. As I began to relay the many tales I have stored up in the old skull case, I stumbled upon a memory that was made the last time I had a mint julep, at Tales of the Cocktail. While at ToC, I attended a seminar on American cocktails, and was privileged to witness a performance by Chris McMillian, a noted New Orleanian mixologist. Now, aside from the large wooden mallet he uses to crack the ice, there's nothing I noticed about the actual drink he was making that set it aside from all the other master mixologists at the event. What made this performance stand out, and it was a performance, was what he was saying as he was preparing the libation.
There was a projected bit of text behind him which I had been mindlessly scanning during his introduction and it took me a few seconds to realize that he was speaking the words I was reading. "The Zenith of Man's Pleasure" it was called, written by J. Soule Smith, an ode to the mint julep. You can see a video of Chris reciting it in here Take a look, it will change your life.
My friends (oooh, I feel so dirty, so McCainsian), I must apologize for the brevity of this article. Truth be told, there's a huge football game today, and I've got a bunch of people coming over, and I don't want them to see just how bad my apartment can get now that I'm in school a few nights a week. I hope that you all have a wonderful February...there's a holiday in two weeks that can be a lot of fun. I refer of course to Friday the 13th.
About The Raven
J.T. "Raven" Centonze has been a long time student of the art of alcohol. Initially interested in keeping conversation at parties, his love for alcohol grew to an obsession in college. In between his real job of running a college bookstore or two, he is the part owner/operator of his own winery. He bartends at private parties which allows him the innovation of many new, unique drinks.
The Raven now has his own e-mail address at the BarNoneDrinks. Please send all questions, comments, and suggestions related "The Raven's Caw" to firstname.lastname@example.org. Also accepted at this address are job offers, death threats, marriage proposals, offers to enlarge certain parts of my anatomy, awards nominations, petitions for absolution and anything else The Raven might need to know about.
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Valentine's Day is just around the corner - the perfect day to celebrate all the love in your life and banish those winter blues that are ever so present this time of year.
Whether you're looking to embrace this day with your sweetheart, or just having fun with friends, Valentine's Day themed cocktails are a great way to set the mood.
If you're looking for a sumptuous cocktail to spice up a romantic candlelight dinner for two, these decadent libations are perfect for the occasion. Single this Valentine's Day? Host a cocktail party and toast to your friendships in style as these "V-Day" themed cocktails melt the blues away. Being single doesn't mean you should spend this day alone, have your guests bring along a friend and perhaps these lusty concoctions will help make some magic happen!
Whatever the case -- toast to your lover, friends, or happily-single self this Valentine's Day, with cocktails that perfectly capture the essence of this special day.
Bacardi O Chocolat Rendezvous
Shake ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled, chocolate-rimmed martini glass. Garnish with an orange slice.
Bacardi Razz Truffle Martini
Shake ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled martini glass.
Bacardi Coconut French Kiss
Combine all cocktail ingredients in a blender. Blend until smooth and frothy. Pour into a chilled daiquiri glass with a shredded coconut rim.
Bacardi Grand Melon Bubbly Love
Pour into a chilled flute glass. Garnish with a watermelon slice.
Cristobal Punch - by Greg Seider
Combine ingredients and shake. Serve on rocks in Collins glass, float 18 yr, splash soda. Garnish with pineapple leaf and floating whole star anise.
*To make five spice syrup: bring 2 cups water, 2 1/2 cups demerera sugar and 4 tablespoons of five spice powder to boil. Cover, let cool and strain
Shake vigorously and strain into a chilled 10 ounce cocktail glass rimmed with sweetened Homemade 7 Spice (wet rim with a lime wedge, then dip in equal parts superfine sugar and spice blend. Spice Blend: 2 parts Fresh Ground Cinnamon, 2 parts ground fennel, 2 parts Dried Ginger, 1 part Ground Szechuan Peppercorns, 1 part Ground Cloves, 1 part ground star anise, 1 part ground cardamom)
*Ginger-Habanero Syrup (1 Cup Sugar, 1 Cup Water heated to just before boiling with 1 Seeded Habanero and 2 Ounces Sliced Fresh Ginger. Remove Habanero 5 minutes after taking off of heat. Cool and strain out ginger. Keeps sealed in the refrigerator for 3 weeks)
Slow aged rums? Visit Flor de Caña
The Sapphire Silk
Shake ingredients with ice and strain into martini glass. Garnish with a fresh halved strawberry on the rim.
Muddle the strawberries and cucumber in the bottom of a highball glass. Fill the glass with ice then build in the remaining ingredients. Stir well with a bar spoon and garnish with a slice of cucumber.
Oh, Valentine's Day. That chocolate-filled, card-buying love-fest. The holiday was first celebrated in the Middle Ages, when men would elaborately court women to distract from the pain of the bubonic plague. These days, celebrating Valentine's Day can be just as, if not more painful, than having the plague. Recently the holiday has expanded from romance to being a sort of pink-flavored Christmas, where, depending on your social circle, you might be expected to celebrate with everyone from your mother to the attendant at the dry cleaners (Here's a poem for that card: "Roses are red/violets are blue/I clean my clothes/And so do you.").
So if you're having a romantic Valentine's Day this year, wonderful! Pour the champagne and have at it. But if you're stuck celebrating V-Day with a more non-traditional crowd, here are my drink suggestions to set the right tone for the evening:
The In-Laws - White White Spritzer
Fill a highball glass with ice. Add wine, then top with soda.
Why: It's wholesome, classic, and impotent. Clearly conveys the message "I am not going to sexually ravish your son/daughter tonight, but instead will probably watch Rock of Love and fall asleep on the couch with the cat."
The +1 to Your Romantic Dinner - The Third Rail
Adapted from the 1955 edition Old Mr. Boston's Official Bartender's Guide.
Why: On subway tracks, the third rail can electrocute you, and the drink's name is reminiscent of "third wheel." Either way, hopefully your hanger-on will get the picture.
The Coworker Who Knows You Hate Him - The Old Pal
Stir with ice, strain into a cocktail glass, and serve.
Why: Okay, the report isn't done or whatever, and you're stuck with your coworker for the night. The Old Pal can add to your mutual animosity with a good serving of sarcasm.
The Girl/Guy You Want to Break Up With the Next Day - Blue Ribbon Iced Tea
Adapted from the Food Network's Long Island Iced Tea.
Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Pour the vodka, gin, rum, tequila, Triple Sec, and lemon juice into the shaker. Cover and shake vigorously to combine and chill. Pour the mixture, ice and all, into an oversize glass and top off with the entire PBR. Garnish with lemon wedges. Serve.
Why: They'll hate you so much for serving them such an utterly disgusting drink, they'll break up with you instead. Problem solved!
The Ex - Bitters on the Rocks
Pour an entire bottle of Angostura or Peychaud's bitters in an ice-filled highball glass.
Why: This speaks for itself.
Meg Favreau is a writer and comedian living in Philadelphia, PA. Read her blog at www.ihearyoulikestories.com.
This coming Valentine's Day, take a moment to reflect on love over a festive cocktail. Whether shared by a couple in front of a romantic fire or enjoyed as a toast by friends embarking on a night out, the Sandeman's Sweetheart Sparkler is an ideal drink choice. Combining the new trend of port cocktails with the classic tradition of celebratory bubbles, the Sweetheart Sparkler is a sophisticated yet simple drink that is perfect for a sweet celebration.
Pour into a champagne flute.
Serve in a collins glass and garnish with lime and a cherry. Top with Soda.
Queen of Hearts
Shake with ice and strain into a martini glass and top with champagne.
The Sloe Motion
Pour in the Sloe Gin, Top with Champagne and garnish with blueberries at the bottom of the glass.
Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake vigorously, strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with a rose pedal.
High Plains Drifter No. 1 - from the 2009 Mr. Boston Official Bartender's guide
Shake first four ingredients with ice and strain into chilled, Campari-rinsed cocktail glass
* to make honey syrup, heat equal parts honey and water in a saucepan over low heat, stirring until blended. When cool, bottle and refrigerate.
The Mr. Boston Official Bartender's Guide often takes a beating from certain segments of the cocktail community. Not in the literal sense (although there are many sticky, stained and scuffed copies floating around out there), but in terms of where it sits in the hierarchy of bar guides.
Many cocktail enthusiasts take a dim view of the Mr. Boston books. Much of this disdain is a reaction to the accuracy of the recipes. Often, many recipes in the Mr. B. books exhibit a curious break with what is considered the "traditional" recipe for a given drink. Ingredients are omitted, substituted, and in some cases, others are inexplicably added to what is otherwise a familiar, standard recipe.
A second complaint often leveled at the Mr. B. books is that they are not exhaustive. Many people turn to the guides expecting to find a recipe for a drink they enjoyed poolside in some far-flung vacation resort. Or perhaps they're attempting to find out what was in the elegant highballs they remembered their grandparents drinking at bridge games in the 50's. Maybe it's just the embarrassingly-named shooters that put and end to last week's bar crawl. Whatever the scenario, it's entirely likely the seeker may come up empty.
I think much of this criticism is unwarranted. As for the first charge, one should keep in mind that drink recipes change. Very few drinks go their entire lifespan without at least some minor alterations placed upon them. Cocktails by their nature are subject to the whims of both those serving and consuming them. Those seeking a canon of immutable recipes are doomed to disappointment- There are no graven stone tablets resting in the vault of an Ultimate Cocktail Authority.
Drinks, like many other things in life, are organic. They come, they go, and some stick around long enough to gain notice. But rarely is there a drink that can claim to have been untouched by the passage of time. Browse a stack of bar guides and you will find the same variations that the Mr, Boston books display. Expecting Mr. B. to be any different is unrealistic. Drinks evolve, and the Mr.Boston guides reflect that evolution (and perhaps better than any...I don't know of another series of bar guides that has been around as long).
As for the second charge, the Mr. Boston guide was never intended to be a comprehensive listing of every drink ever made by man throughout time. Not only would compiling such a book be impossible (for several reasons), but it would certainly be a chore to use once completed. Aside from originally being a means to promote their proprietary liquor brands, the Mr. Boston guides were meant to be a speedy, convenient tool to allow both professional barkeeps and homebound hosts to deliver a variety of drinks with minimum of fuss.
Taking this into account, the Mr. B. books are small (their pocket-sized dimensions have scarcely changed since their inception), yet despite their size they hold a surprising number of recipes. While being far from the vast compendium of drink recipes Mr. Boston detractors often yearn for, the books do an admirable job of collecting both classic and contemporary recipes into a single source. There's a reason that you'll likely find one of the little red books behind almost any bar...they're easy to use, and probably have what your guest is looking for.
That being said, I will concede there are always a handful of recipes in any Mr. B. edition that will cause a giant cartoon question-mark to spring up over your head. One such recipe, the "High Plains Drifter No. 1" (listed above) is from the 2009 edition.
I can only assume the drink was inspired by the movie of the same name. One of the classic Clint Eastwood "man with no name" films, High Plains Drifter is an excellent example of the "spaghetti western" genre, even though it was directed by Eastwood and filmed in the U.S. (In the interest of full disclosure, it's also one of my all-time favorite movies).
In a nutshell, it's a good drink. On paper it looks a bit suspect, but the flavors marry wonderfully. Conceptually, the Tequila makes sense, and the Campari is probably a nod to the Leone-inspired tone of the film. The honey syrup is thematically incongruous, but allowances must be made in pursuit of a good drink. While no specific Tequila brand is mentioned, I used Innocente, a smoothly-textured blanco that meshes seamlessly with the tart, sweet, and bitter flavors of the other ingredients. I also tried it with some spicier brands, so if you like your Tequila drinks with a little more edge, I suggest experimenting until you find one that suits your taste. Either way, it's a cocktail that is shockingly easy to drink, so proceed with caution.
And if a mysterious stranger wanders into your bar asking for one, I suggest you make it for him quickly and just leave him alone.
Who is Dr. Bamboo? Some say he is a renegade scientist who renounced his original field of study to dedicate himself to the advancement of cocktail culture. Others claim he is a powerful shaman who practices the forbidden arts of a long-forgotten civilization. Still others maintain he is actually a traveler from a faraway world, sent to our planet as an ambassador of intergalactic fine living. Whatever the truth may be, one thing is certain: He makes a mean Martini. When he's not foraging for obscure drink ingredients and vintage barware, Dr. Bamboo works as a freelance illustrator and is the drinks columnist for Bachelor Pad Magazine.
Squeeze blood orange and lime juices, add ingredients except lemon lime soda, shake with ice and pour in a 12oz bucket, and top with lemon lime soda. Garnish with fresh blueberries.
Shake with ice and strain in a champagne flute. Top with champagne, garnish with a rose petal and sprinkle with edible gold dust.
Stir and serve over ice in a highball glass.
Stir and serve over ice in a highball glass. Garnish with a lime wedge.
Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass
Have you ever sat down at a bar and thought, "Wow, these bar stools are uncomfortable"? If so, chances are that "comfort" was not too high on the bar's list of priorities. Most bars tend to choose their bar stools based on both comfort and design aesthetic - a chic, downtown club, for instance might go with an uber-modern metal bar stool, while a cigar bar might go for a sophisticated leather bar stool. When shopping for your home bar, it's important that you take both comfort and style into consideration. Below you will find a list of "bar stool basics," meant to help you choose the best bar stools for your home bar.
A good bar stool for your home bar will be the perfect blend of both form and function. Don't settle on an ugly stool just because it's comfy, and on the same note, don't purchase a super stylish but otherwise painful-to-sit on bar stool just because it complements your decor. Take some time and do your research before shopping. Give yourself a budget and have some idea of what style and features you are looking for. Remember, your home bar is supposed to be a social space so it's OK to have a little fun here, as long as you don't break the bank in the process.
Today is Super Bowl XLIII and many of you are gearing up for the big match by figuring out where you will watch the live broadcast. And then there are those "lucky" enough to be hosting a viewing party in your living room who are busy planning themed food and drink menus to serve during this, the biggest sports night of the year.
I thought you would enjoy a few Tequila Herradura-based cocktail recipes that will only require you to take your eyes off of the screen for less than 60-seconds (just long enough for a time out).
In an "old fashion" style glass, put two spoons of sugar and the lemon. Crush these ingredients. Finally add Tequila Herradura and stir to mix.
AFC Herradura Paloma
In a big ball glass put the ice and Tequila Herradura. Add salt, lemon juice and grapefruit soda (or juice).
NFC Herradura Margarita
Frost the rim of a glass with sugar. Mix all ingredients in a blender for a few minutes. Decorate with a lime slice.
Just a quick reminder from your friends at the DUI Foundation to play it safe; don't drink and drive. Visit the non-profit DUI Foundation New York DWI Lawyer page for 1) free answers to common law questions regarding state-by-state DUI limits, fines and penalties, 2) information that will educate you, your family and friends on alcohol abuse and the consequences of drinking and driving 3) links to support groups in your area that are designed to help you prevent drunk driving occurrences and give you real help from people that care in the event that you need it.