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Ladies and Gentleman: Cocktail Fodder!

July 8, 2010 Leave a comment

AWC’s wine jefe, the East Village Wine Geek, promoting your daily Fodder.

Cocktails with the Captain

July 7, 2010 2 comments

I freaking love America. Everyone knows that. Everyone.  I’m the guy that celebrated the 4th of July when I was studying abroad in London, England… in October. I own multiple pairs of American Flag Chuck Taylor high tops (true) and the Star Spangled banner is the current ringtone on my cellular phone (not so true). When I make my smoking-hot girlfriend breakfast in bed, which I do all the time, she gets a a big ole stack of freedom toast and washes it down with some freedom vanilla coffee.

America!

So it shouldn’t surprise anyone that I am refusing to pour any White Russians to my customers because of those Commie spies we busted last week. Yes, you heard me correctly: I am boycotting the White Russian, that seemingly harmless yet deadly mixture of vodka, Kaluha and milk. I’m serious. I caught my friend Kelly drinking one and I literally threw her cat out of a fourth story window because of it. Take that you Soviets.

You know what I am pouring everyone instead? Liberty and Justice – thats right, pure Kentucky Bourbon and ginger ale.

Here’s a little piece of sweet, sweet American history for all of you: in 1964, the United States Congress passed one of the most historical and important pieces of legislation in all of American history. No, I’m not talking about the Civil Rights Act; I’m talking about the The Federal Standards of Identity for Distilled Spirits (5.22). It officially recognized bourbon as a “distinct product of the United States.” Truly historical. So when people ask me, what makes a bourbon a bourbon? I tell them what congress told me back in ’64:

  • Bourbon must be made of a grain mixture that is at least 51% corn.
  • Bourbon must be distilled to no more than 160 (U.S.) proof (80% alcohol by volume).
  • Neither coloring nor flavor may be added.
  • Bourbon must be aged in new, charred oak barrels (THE barrel, in my opinion).
  • Bourbon must enter into the barrel at no more than 125 proof (62.5% alcohol by volume).
  • Bourbon, like other whiskeys, may not be bottled at less than 80 proof (40% alcohol by volume).
  • Bourbon that meets the above requirements and has been aged for at least two years may be called (but is not required to be) Straight Bourbon.
  • Straight Bourbon, aged for a period of less than four years, must be labeled with the duration of its aging.
  • If age is stated on the label, it must be the age of the youngest whiskey in the bottle.

I know what you’re thinking: “Adam, all this sounds pretty intimidating….” That’s OK. You’re allowed to be scared. George Washington, Paul Revere, Ben Franklin and Shaun White were all a little scared… but they pushed their fears aside and persevered. That’s all I’m asking you to do. Persevere and taste that sweet cocktail incarnation of liberty and justice.

I realize bourbon and ginger ale isn’t for anyone (just heroes and winners), so I’m including the recipe for something a little more user friendly: the All-American Peach Iced Tea Shot. Enjoy, and remember, it’s AmeriCAN not AmeriCAN’T.

The All-American Peach Iced Tea Shot:

  • 3 parts Jim Beam black
  • 1 part Peach Schnapps
  • Top with Redbull

Cocktails with the Captain

June 30, 2010 1 comment

Mmmmm bacon...

“Among the smoothest vodkas I have ever had with absolutely no bite… It gave the drink a hint of smokiness and of course a subtle bacon flavor that really, really worked well.”

— Eleanor Roosevelt (Or Food & Beverage World, depending on who you ask.)

Nine out of ten people agree that I am on the cutting edge of pop culture. Ever since I was featured on the cover of Tiger Beat back in December of ’97, people from Flagstaff, AZ all the way to Concord, NH have relied on me – NO, depended on me – to deliver the goods on the hottest new music, fashion trends, dance styles, and most of all, sophisticated and innovative liquors.

Ladies and gentlemen, please allow me to introduce you to the newest, hottest craze that is taking the wine and spirits market by storm: Bakon Vodka from Black Rock Spirits. I’m serious y’all, this thing is hotter than Tickle-Me-Elmo; 21,610 Facebook Fans can’t be wrong.

Black Rock Spirits boasts that their product is “a superior quality potato vodka with a savory bacon flavor.” And that “it’s clean, crisp, and delicious. This is the only vodka you’ll ever want to use to make a Bloody Mary.” Other bloggers suggest it be served as a fun novelty shot for you and your friends on a wild night out. Personally, I can imagine pairing it with pineapple juice for the perfect Hawaiian Luau libation. Mmmmm.

An oh-so-good Bakon Bloody Mary.

I think the real fascination here lies in the philosophical issues surrounding this product: Can Kosher Jews enjoy it?  Does a hangover from Bakon Vodka resemble the swine flu? What else could you pair with Bacon flavored vodka? And, is this just the beginning of an unstoppable carnivorous spirit movement in the United States?

We want to hear what you think. Please help us extrapolate the answers to these spellbinding questions by using the comment section in this blog.

And in case you were not already aware, I really do love bacon.

Until next week, enjoy the bacon.

Cocktails with the Captain.

June 23, 2010 1 comment

Blue Weber Agave. It looks so innocent.

From time to time, Cocktail Fodder will present to you a guest author. Someone with a different voice, viewpoint or expertise to keep things fresh and give you a break from your beloved bloggers. “Cocktails with the Captain” will be a weekly segment presenting you with an assortment of new cocktail recipes. Written by our resident renaissance man, bartender, good Samaritan, liquor aficionado and Gamecock – Captain Adam’s recipes will satisfy your happy hour cravings. So without further adieu…

As a neighborhood bartender, I find that people are always coming to me for personal advice. I constantly hear things like, “Hey Adam, how do I ask my guy friend to go camping with me without it being creepy?” “Hey Adam, how can I tell if that cute girl in the office really likes me or if she’s just using me to get to you?” “Hey Adam, what’s an easy and unique cocktail I can serve at my summer cookout to impress all of my friends?”

The answer to all these questions, my friends, can be derived from my favorite tequila product on the market, Don Julio Reposado.

This is the real deal y’all. Don Julio Reposado is 100% Blue Weber Agave, double distilled, and rested in charred oak bourbon barrels (my all time favorite kind of barrel) for up to 11 months. You can find it at most liquor stores for about $45 for a standard 750ml sized bottle – absolutely worth it on a special night for you and your friends. Though it is smooth enough to drink directly on the rocks and certainly makes a delicious margarita, I have become a huge advocate of the Don Julio Reposado Paloma. This cocktail pairs the citrus notes of the Reposado tequila with natural grapefruit juice, a touch of tonic and a generous wedge of lime, making it a perfect go-to refreshment on a hot summer’s day. Here is a simple recipe I managed to get from the Don Julio website for your enjoyment. And, as far as the cute girl in the office goes… she’s probably just using you to get to me. Enjoy!

Reposado Paloma

– 1 ounce Don Julio Reposado

– 2 ounces Grapefruit juice

– 1/2 ounce Grand Marnier Liquer (optional)

– Top with tonic water

– Build in a Collins glass floating the Grand Marnier on top. Garnish with a lime.