Tuesday, February 24, 2009

My F.F.

So I've been reading a bunch and doing research, and I kept coming across falernum. Several months back I was visiting the can can on a thursday when Casey and Zach had whipped up a batch, and that night I had my first Corn n' Oil. After a few moar cocktails I was pleading to get a copy of the recipe. As friends we went back and forth and as I fuzzily recall I think I payed 20$ for the recipe, but don't think I payed for the drinks. I've held onto that handwritten recipe on a piece of register tape for a while and it served as the basis for my first attempt.

Since then I've had a smattering of assorted home made recipes and finally did my own over the past 2 nights. I sampled it out and got some very positive feedback.

My First Falernum, or Langmack Falernum #1
you will need:
12 limes zested and juiced
1 bottle 80 proof white rum
dried clove - 2 dry ounces measured in a shotglass, or around 40 whole cloves
1 oz. orgeat
2 oz. Amaretto
3 cups white sugar
1 cup sugar in the raw
ginger root.
4 pints of cold water
large screw top jar ( similar to a maraschino cherry or bar olive jar.)

Combine all ingredients in the large jar except ginger and shake, shake, shake until all the sugar is dissolved. Let rest 24 hours, shaking not constantly, but as often as possible.

I read a bunch on how tricky ginger can be to add to the mix as it has a tendency to be sharp initially and then fade over time. I sidestepped this I think by bottling a fifths worth of the mix and adding a chunk of ginger root about an inch and a half long with all the outer skin removed.

Personal notes:
Been gaming a ton and recovering from a touch of being ill and slicing my pinky wide open on a shattering pint glass while actually cleaning at home. 3 of my friends are moving away and I'm becoming introverted again. I'm looking for work again. I'd love to revamp a bars cocktail program but just finding work is seeming tough these days. Back up to a pack a day when i wanted to quit. Dressing better. Still staying up way too late when I should be sleeping.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Drink Well, Just Don't Be a Cheap Bastard!

If your 401(k) has taken a beating, or if you or a spouse or friend have been laid off, or if you’re simply hanging on to your wallet for dear life, you’ve probably given some thought to how the economy is affecting your basic expenditures — such as those you make for booze. Here’s a chance to share how you’re drinking during the downturn; whether it’s affordable booze, ways you’re cutting corners, or things you’ve figured out how to mix or make on the cheap, we need to hear it.

This months roundup will be hosted by Matt @ Rowley's Whiskey Forge

I saw this MxMo listed a few months back and have been dreading writing the post. Not that my 401k needs saving, (that would require a 401k!) but I really hate advocating people putting a price on quality, or giving up quality in favor of price. As much as it pains me, here are a few cost cutting tips.

#1 Stay Home.
Bars cost more than just the booze. There is payroll, overhead, rent, yada, yada, yada. If you are just trying to get buzzed, do some and learn how to make a drink you like in the comfort of your own house.
#2 Buy in Bulk.
If you are going to drink on the cheap, buying a 24 pack of beer is more economical than a 6 or 12.
#3 Split Shots
a 4-5 oz cocktail will usually run you 8-9$. A 2oz shot of anything will be 6-7$ Order a cocktail and divide it in half.
#4 Drink Well Liquor.
Feel free to enjoy that first great cocktail, but if you want to stay in the long haul and save some scratch, drink well beverages like a gin and tonic. It'll go even further if you order it in a tall glass.
#5 Happy Hour
Its cost effective for a reason.

That being said I'm gonna jump on a soapbox and say please continue to go out and support your bars. Tip well and enjoy the bar experience for what it is. In closing I did a variation on the The Suffering Bastard I'm calling...

the Cheap Bastard.

Build in a collins glass. ( In keeping true to cheap, I used a free glass from the old spaghetti factory )
1 oz. Rye
1 oz. Gin
1 oz. Lemon
1/2 oz. Simple
2 dashes Peychauds
top with soda ( ginger beer is expensive! )
Garnish with a whole lemon peel.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Oh! the myspace revisited.

so upon checking the bulletins i came across this gem. I was hanging out with her roomate for a while...

Feb 8, 2009 3:49 AM
This job. I'm over it.

My boss just tried​ to prove​ a point​ by dumpi​ng red wine on me and ruini​ng my brand​ new white​ shirt​.​

Sorry​ I free-​poure​d the whisk​y and got some on the groun​d.​ No need to be a dick about​ it. God. And thank​s for yelli​ng at me in front​ of custo​mers and makin​g me cry. Aweso​me.​

I'm telli​ng my dad. He's gonna​ beat him up. You all can do the same.​

p.s. love my job.

big wrexin pdx post in the next day or two, I just need to recover from the hurt the OBG put on me.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

State of the Union / Bowling Pin Cocktail

So as much as I love being as original as possible when trying to make drinks, I am a firm believer in a solid variation. In my opinion, taking an established recipe and changing one ingredient does not constitute a new recipe, rather I'd call that a variation.

So, I've exchanged a few emails with the fine people at Piedmont and thought of one of my favourite drinks ( I did start bartending in a bowling alley mind you....) and did a White Russian variation using Catdaddy instead of Kahlua. My apologies to my Pitbull.

The Bowling Pin
1 oz. vodka ( I used Sobieski as its the only vodka in the house )
1 oz. Catdaddy
fill with half and half.

So in looking up names I found that a White Lightning(according to wiki) is the classic name for a vodka soda. I'm gonna confuse some people with that one. I also saw this story which makes me happy.

Obama Raises the Bar
In politics, as in life, a little alcohol can go a long way.
By John Dickerson
Posted Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2009, at 7:14 PM ET
Barack Obama had a drinks party at the White House on Wednesday night. He invited congressional leaders of both parties for cocktails at 7:30. In his relentless push for his stimulus plan, he's apparently not going to let them out of his sight. He was with the same people on Tuesday, just a few days after he'd met with them at the White House. The cocktail invitation could be a polite gesture—they hosted him Tuesday on the Hill, and he wants to return the favor; or it could be a stratagem—after being with them so much, Obama realizes that everyone could use a good drink. Or it could be a philosophical statement: Sobering times do not necessarily require everyone to be sober.

This is a notable departure from Obama's predecessor, whose relationship with Congress was notoriously chilly and whose relationship with the bottle ended at age 40. But it connects him to a rich presidential tradition that goes back to the Founders, who drank heavily after signing the Constitution.
It's good news. First, drinking in moderation leads to an equitable distribution of the humors, and we want our president to be healthy. Second, among adversaries, drinking promotes relaxation and laughter. I doubt it will lead to an agreement on the size of small-business tax cuts in the recovery package, but a few drinks might shave off a few layers of posturing. All of the guessing at motives will decrease. Without so much chest-thumping, the two parties may even get to genuine points of disagreement faster. As a community organizer, Obama knows the power of getting everyone to recognize themselves in one another. What better way to do that than over a few drinks? (Those who disagree should stop wondering why they are lonely at parties or aren't invited at all.)

Senate historian Don Ritchie reminds me of some other presidential habits. Harry Truman favored bourbon and branch water. (As vice president, Truman had just arrived to have a bourbon with House Speaker Sam Rayburn when he got the call that FDR had died.) When he was president, LBJ came to the Capitol on several occasions for an after-work drink with Senate Republican leader Everett Dirksen.
I am tired of comparisons between the Obama administration and the Kennedy and Roosevelt administrations, but when it comes to drinking, let's encourage them. FDR won the presidency on a platform of ending Prohibition. Every evening, including during the war, Roosevelt mixed drinks in the Oval Office from behind his desk, before him a tray equipped with whatever he needed for the martinis or old fashioneds he was mixing. "He mixed the ingredients," recalled author Robert Sherwood, "with the deliberation of an alchemist but with what appeared to be a certain lack of precision since he carried on a steady conversation while doing it."
Though Kennedy was not a big drinker, the cocktail culture that grew around his administration was exciting. "Every party had at least a few senators or cabinet officials and a few big-time press people. It was all off the record and a lot of business got done," Fred Harris, a former Democratic senator from Oklahoma, recounted to me. "The war on poverty and federal aid to education and civil rights, we hadn't had yet the urban riots and the war in Vietnam was no bigger than a man's hand. There were new and exciting programs and new and exciting people."
After Kennedy, LBJ carried on the presidential carrying on, though in his own inimitable style. Joseph Califano tells the story of drinking while riding around Lyndon Johnson's ranch. "As we drove around we were followed by a car and a station wagon with Secret Service agents. The president drank Cutty Sark scotch and soda out of a large white plastic foam cup. Periodically, Johnson would slow down and hold his left arm outside the car, shaking the cup and ice. A Secret Service agent would run up to the car, take the cup and go back to the station wagon. There another agent would refill it with ice, scotch, and soda as the first agent trotted behind the wagon. Then the first agent would run the refilled cup up to LBJ's outstretched and waiting hand, as the president's car moved slowly along."
The great cautionary tale of presidential drinking, of course, is Nixon. He was both a drunk and a reminder to be suspicious of presidents when they have us over for drinks. After the Watergate story broke, Nixon and his aides decided they needed to humanize the president in the press, so they invited some key reporters over to have cocktails. The gambit was a disaster because Nixon was so socially awkward. Before he was president, when Nixon hosted parties at his home, he used cocktail mixing to replace conversation. He would pop up before his invited guests, offer them a drink, and then disappear to the bar again. Periodically, he'd pop in again to encourage everyone to have another, before returning to the bar.
When he drank alone, Nixon could throw his back into the task. This is why, in many accounts of late-night conversations by former aides, the president comes off as barely coherent. Once the British prime minister was on the phone, and national security adviser Henry Kissinger had to intercept the call. "Can we tell him no?" Kissinger asked the White House operator. "When I talked to the President he was loaded."
The other famous presidential drunk was Ulysses S. Grant. When he was a general, however, his drunkenness worked in his favor. When informed that Grant drank whiskey while leading his troops, Lincoln reportedly replied, "Find out the name of the brand so I can give it to my other generals."