Creating a signature cocktail.

January 2, 2011 § Leave a comment

It’s been nice to see the resurgence of vintage cocktails over the last year or so.  It’s gotten me thinking that while I’ve experienced a lot from a culinary perspective, when it comes to booze it’s like I’ve just been eating at Applebees.

This week it’ll be my goal to find my signature cocktail. Despite growing up in the South, I’ve never been one for whiskey, but I’m going to give it another shot.  Coming off the holidays we have a few nice bottles from friends that will help! Stocking a bar in the proper way isn’t an inexpensive endeavor.

I plan on getting in and exploring the pre-Prohibition and Prohibition era cocktails. In case you haven’t seen it, Boardwalk Empire is a great show to get you in the mood for drinking real cocktails, from an incredible era.  As part of the promotion of the show they even came up with their own cocktails to check out.

In Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails, Ted Haigh writes that cocktails were morning drinks. Bitters were considered medicine in the 19th century, so cocktails were the “hair of the dog” of that era.

I’ll stick to a nice evening cocktail for now and will start with the Old Fashioned (supposedly the first cocktail):

one lump sugar muddled with a dash of water, a lemon peel and 2 dashes orange bitters (or angostura bitters). add 1.5-2 oz. whiskey & an ice cube & stir. No cherry.

a new year, a new blog

January 2, 2011 § Leave a comment

In 2011, I’ve found myself at a point where i’m still settling into a new city (Boulder, CO) and i’m freelancing (read: working less).  For the first time in years, I have a good chunk of free time.

In lieu of a new year’s resolution, I’m resolving to do 52 new things, one per week.  A week won’t be enough time for mastering anything but it’ll give me a taste of what I might like to spend more time doing down the line. The whole year isn’t mapped out yet, but there are a few things guiding the “to dos”:

1) (obvious) Interests. I’ve spent much of the last 10 years focused on building my career in advertising which has left little time or energy to pursue interests I’ve had along the way.  While it’s a fun field, advertising has probably turned me into my worst critic.  To be good, things need to be distilled down, clearly positioned and perfectly executed.  For this project I’m going to give myself a break and just jump in vs feel like I have to position and perfect everything.  Some interests will be more straightforward and easy and others will definitely be taking me out of my comfort zone.

2) Local. We plan to stay in Boulder awhile and for years I’ve never really allowed myself to think of where I was living as “Home”.  I’d like to use this project as an opportunity to really get to know what’s going on around me and maybe even become part of the community here (yikes!). I’m hoping to meet interesting people doing interesting things who I can learn from.  Everything won’t be Boulder centric, but I’m going to explore the area where I can.

3) Craft. This is the area I am most interested in exploring.  I read a book last year called Shop Class as Soulcraft and it really left an impression on me.  I can remember growing up my grandfather could fix anything and my grandmother made fresh bread, canned, preserved and knew everything about sewing. I think there’s something in these things that has been lost.  I’d like to try to find a bit of it.

Why a blog? I’m not the best writer and the thought of putting stuff up for others to read is a little intimidating, but I hope it will help keep me on track first and foremost. I hope some of what I learn and do may be of interest to others. I would also love for people to share some of their own experiences and expertise along the way.

Happy reading!


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