Tag Archives: jerry thomas

Drink of the Week

Hot Whiskey Toddyzacapa-hot-toddy-290x290

  • 2oz Bourbon
  • 1/2oz Lemon
  • 3/4oz Honey
  • Boiling hot water
  • 3 Cloves

Garnish: Lemon Wedge

You must put in the spirits before the hot water, then stir with a spoon. Use a Toddy glass if you have one.

It is officially flu season, and sadly today I am writing this post from the comfort of my bed with a horrible sore throat and a stuffy nose! HOWEVER a silver lining can be found in the above drink which is great when you’re feeling a little under the weather.

Honey and lemon are very soothing for a sore throat, and the alcohol will kill some of those germs…even if I just made all that up, the drink tastes great and you will at least feel better from drinking it!

The original recipe of a toddy calls for Brandy as the base, however Bourbon has become a popular alternative and American standard for the recipe. It is a really old drink so the origins are complicated and a little unclear, however Jerry Thomas writes about the Brandy Toddy and Whiskey Toddy in his book “How to mix drinks or the Bon-Vivant’s companion”  1862.

The Brandy Toddy being the one described with hot water, the Whiskey toddy says to use ice. I personally like using Whiskey in a hot toddy, although it is unclear why Jerry Thomas favored Brandy as the base for the hot version.  A Whiskey toddy is mentioned in Charles Dickens first book ‘The pickwick papers” which was written in 1867, so we know the late 1800s saw it as a fairly popular drink for cold nights.

Just so you know, a Toddy glass is a heat resistant glass mug that is perfect for Irish coffees as well as Toddy’s.  It is always a good idea to warm the glass before pouring in the boiling liquid, to prevent any risk of cracking.   If you don’t have a toddy mug in your collection, I recommend getting one because they are always useful to have around for hot drinks.

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Drinks fit for a Queen!

umm…No. Not that Queen.

That’s Better… I give you, Queen Elizabeth II

This week-end the Brits, Aussies and Canadians, (and many others) will be celebrating the Queens Diamond Jubilee.  Several people (mainly my American friends) have asked me in the last few days what this actually means…so for those who don’t know, let me enlighten you.

On June 2nd 2012 it will be 6o years (yes, you heard correctly…60 years!!!) since Queen Elizabeth II took over the throne.  This is a huge accomplishment and quite a rare feat, her reign is actually the second-longest for a British monarch; only Queen Victoria has reigned longer (so far).  Queen Elizabeth II ascended to the throne at age 25 after the death of her father, King George VI and was crowned as Queen of the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Other Realms and Territories on June 2, 1953 in the first televised Coronation service.

Sticking to my websites theme of Mixology and recipe history, I thought it would be a nice idea to put up some drink ideas to mark this momentous occasion.  There are many parties that will be going on throughout the World this week-end, and I know my family and friends in the UK will be relying on me to give some drink suggestions…so here we go.

Photo Credit: spiritedentertaining.com

Diamond Fizz

  • 2 oz London Dry Gin
  • 1 oz fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp Powdered sugar
  • Fill with Chilled Champagne

Shake and strain ingredients in to a highball glass with ice, then fill with Champagne.

This drink works for two reasons, it has the perfect name to match the Diamond Jubilee year and it has champagne in it, which is the classic celebration tipple of choice!

Also known as a Champagne Fizz, this drink is similar to the classic Gin Fizz although it uses Champagne rather than soda water.  It follows the fizz characteristic of being served over ice, which is unusual for a champagne beverage.

The first printed reference to a fizz (spelled “fiz”) is in the 1887 edition of Jerry Thomas’ Bartender’s Guide, which contains six fizz recipes including the Ramos Gin Fizz (A great Ramos Gin Punch Recipe can be found by clicking here.) The above recipe makes for a nice and refreshing celebratory drink.

The Coronation Cocktail

  • 3/4 oz dry vermouth
  • 3/4 oz sweet vermouth
  • 3/4 oz applejack or apple brandy
  • dash of apricot brandy

Pour the ingredients into a mixing glass with ice cubes. Stir well. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

There couldn’t be a more fitting drink name for this occasion than The Coronation Cocktail.  There are a few variations out there with the same name, however this is the one I found to be the most ‘Classic’ in it’s history as it comes from The Old Waldorf-Astoria Bar Book by A.S. Crockett published in 1935.  

It is a vermouth drink from the old days of bartending and really simple to make. It won’t appeal to everyone, but for those who like a strong ‘stiff upper lip’ kind of drink, this is the one to choose.  It does have some sweetness from the apple brandy and a friend mentioned that a dash of peach bitters works well in it also.

Photo Credit: Telegraph

Jubilee Punch

  • 35ml Bombay Sapphire Gin
  • 25ml home-made grapefruit-orange sherbet (see below)
  • 15ml fresh lemon juice
  • 10ml Orgeat syrup
  • 30ml Earl Grey tea
  • Champagne to top up

Combine the ingredients and shake over ice, top up with champagne.

The grapefruit-orange sherbet is made by mixing 200g sugar, 100ml pink grapefruit juice, the zest of an orange and a grapefruit, then simmering until the sugar is dissolved. Double strain and allow to cool completely.

Please note: This recipe provides the British measurement of ml, if you wish to have the recipe in US oz feel free to message me and I will give you the alternative.

This is clearly a complicated recipe to create at home but I wanted to include it because it’s creator is Erik Lorincz, head barman at America Bar at The Savoy Hotel in London.

When I was last back home in the UK, my boyfriend and I went to America Bar and had a wonderful experience. The drinks were balanced, the staff were knowledgable and the place itself was simply, beautiful.  The bartenders all wear suits there, the glassware is made of crystal and the overall feel of the place is classic, formal and elegant. I read that it was at The Savoy Hotel that Princess Elizabeth (before she was Queen), was first seen in public with Prince Philip in 1946. That summer, Prince Philip asked King George VI’s permission to marry his daughter. They married later that year…  isn’t history interesting!?

Photo Credit: Beefeater Gin

Beefeater Garden Party Punch

  • 3 parts Beefeater London Dry Gin
  • 3 parts sparkling English wine
  • 2 parts good quality pressed pear or apple juice
  • 1 part fresh lemon juice
  • 1 part elderflower cordial
  • 1/2 part sugar syrup
Garnish: Pear and apple slices.
 
Serve in a punch bowl over a large ice block

This last recipe is one I came across when googling the term ‘Jubilee drink ideas’.  I found out that Beefeater Gin has teamed up with mixologists Nick Strangeway and Dre Masso to create cocktails and punches to celebrate the Queen and her jubilee milestone.

This recipe looks the best to me and although I have not yet tried it, I think it sounds tasty and is the one I plan to make this coming week-end.  I love Elderflower in any drink with apple, so I think this recipe will have a very fresh and floral quality that is reminiscent of England.  Yet another drink ideal for the occasion and a punch is always a great option for large parties.

To all my fellow Brits who plan to celebrate this week-end, to my Fussy One followers and to everyone who plans to try one of the above cocktails… Enjoy, Be safe,  and as we say in England… Bottoms Up! 🙂

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Drink of the Week

Mint Julep (Jerry Thomas Recipe)

4oz Cognac
1 tbl Sugar
1 tbl Water
2 Sprigs of Mint
FIll with crushed ice. Serve in a Julep Cup

Garnish: Mint sprigs

The weather here in Los Angeles has been gorgeous this week and makes me feel the need to put up a nice Spring drink. The Kentucky Derby last Saturday had people drinking this all across the country, however most people think the original recipe uses Bourbon as the base.

The recipe above is from the classic book How to mix drinks by Jerry Thomas, published in 1862. The Whiskey recipe, as most bartenders know it today, is also listed in Thomas’ book however it comes under the title of a ‘Whiskey Julep’ instead.  According to Jerry Thomas this is an American drink that was introduced to England by Captain Marryatt.

In my opinion this drink is like an ‘adult slushy’ due to the copious amounts of ice and how  sweet and refreshing the drink is.  It is a member of the ‘Smash’ family, which are a genre of drinks served over crushed ice and is supposed to be served in a julep cup (a metal cup made of silver or pewter), designed to keep the drink icy cold.

The picture Jerry Thomas drew of a julep in his book shows an extravagant garnish, which I believe to be an important part of the drink and makes every sip smell of minty freshness. A perfect choice for a hot sunny day.

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Drink of the Week

The Penicillin

2 oz Blended Scotch
1/4oz Islay Scotch
3/4 oz Lemon juice
3/40z Honey-Ginger syrup

Garnish: Candied ginger piece

Combine ingredients in shaker with ice.  Strain into rock glass, ideally with one very large ice cube (dilutes the drink slowly.)

For those of you who know me personally, you will undoubtedly be aware of my trip to the hospital this week.  Don’t worry everyone, I am fine…but being on bed rest and taking a variety of medicines has inspired me to write about a ‘Modern day Classic’, The Penicillin.  First of all, the Honey-Ginger syrup in the recipe above is easy to make.  Combine honey and a little less than equal parts water into a small saucepan and heat, add large slices of peeled fresh ginger, bring to the boil then allow mixture to cool. Remove the ginger pieces and strain into a container.

As I said before, this is a definite ‘Modern Classic’.  In fact until last week I would have bet money it was created back in the days of Jerry Thomas. However, I happened to be at Comme Ca last week in Hollywood for a reunion of the original bar staff and discovered that Sam Ross, a previous employee, is the creator of this drink. Obviously, it is NOT from the pre-prohibition era at all, but in fact from 2005 created for the legendary bar Milk & Honey in New York.

I was fortunate enough to have the drinks creator make it for me, and it was definitely the best version I have ever tasted.  I sadly can’t drink a whole one because I am allergic to raw ginger, but what I did taste was sweet, a little smoky, spicy and full of complexity.  The peaty whiskey comes through the honey sweetness, the lemon and ginger are noticeable flavors  but don’t compete, they just blend nicely together.

This is certainly a great drink if you’re feeling a little under the weather, but even if you’re feeling just fine I suggest you give it a try.

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Drink of the Week

Ramos Milk Punch

1 bottle of Gin (750ml)
200ml Fresh lemon juice
175ml Fresh Lime juice
375ml Simple Syrup
150ml Heavy Cream
1/2 oz Orange Blossom Water
1 tsp Vanilla extract
500ml Soda Water

Garnish: Grated nutmeg

Serve in a punch bowl over a large Ice Cube, and ladle in to punch cups.

When sitting out in the gorgeous Spring sunshine yesterday with friends and family, I asked my boyfriend (known in the alcohol World as FutureGreg) if he could make drinks for everyone.  Having just booked our tickets to Tales of the Cocktail in Louisiana, we decided he should make a ‘New Orleans’ style drink, and The Ramos Gin Fizz was suggested.  Seeing as there was a larger group of people over for Easter/Passover celebrations, he decided to make a punch bowl instead.

The Milk Punch he created was deliciously creamy and extremely refreshing, it had an ice cream soda/creamsicle flavor to it and was sweet but balanced. It is almost identical (minus the egg white) to the Ramos Gin Fizz recipe, which dates back to 1888 when Henry C. Ramos created the drink (originally referred to as the ‘New Orleans Fizz’) at Imperial Cabinet Saloon, NOLA.  They both have a very similar taste however the lack of egg white in the Milk Punch makes it lighter in consistency and I think slightly easier to drink.

The above recipe is a great option for parties, as the quantity serves approximately 10 people.  If you have an event coming up, this is a pretty easy punch to create and a great option for summer. Enjoy!

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A Sporting Celebration!

Event:  Sporting Life 4 year Anniversary
Location: Petit Ermitage
8822 Cynthia Street, West Hollywood, CA 90069
(310) 854-1114.

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Sporting Life is a bartender Networking Group (by invitation only) that consists of Bartenders, their significant others, Liquor Reps, Cocktail enthusiasts and those truly in search of a great drink in Los Angeles.

The committee members Tatsu Oiye, Eric Tecosky, Joe Keeper, Glenn Gritzner, Marcos Tello and Aidan Demarest were there in full force this fine sunny Sunday, and as always did a great job creating an enjoyable afternoon.  They are a talented group of individuals on their own and a necessity to the cocktail community in Los Angeles.  Together they organize these wonderful events once a month, at a different bar/location across the city and so far with a different drink sponsor each time.  It’s really impressive.  I can’t believe only a few months ago I was embarrassed to join my boyfriend at these events because I didn’t know anyone, and now I enter recognizing so many faces and truly feel I am hanging out with friends.

The cocktail community in the city of Los Angeles is so ridiculously supportive of each other, it still astounds me.  If something is happening in the City this group of enthusiasts makes an effort to show their support.

Marcos Tello made his usual announcements of bars opening, events happening and guest bartending locations across the city, then legendary mixology icon Dale Degroff stopped by to give a little speech.

A host of regulars attended this Sunday due to it’s Anniversary status, that included fellow blogger Caroline on Crack (who I am yet to meet in person, but keep attending events and then discovering she was also there!), Giovanni Martinez (Sadie), Brandon Reynolds (Townhouse), Louis Anderman (MMBitters), Zahra Bates (Providence), Francois Vera (Harvard & Stone) and Greg Bryson (Bar Chloe) to name just a handful.

Then we had the drinking… Sponsor this month was Sailor Jerry Rum.  I rather like Sailor Jerry, but I know a few bartenders who weren’t such a huge fan of the brand at the start but ended up being thoroughly impressed by the drinks made with it at this event.  The drinks list was put together by Brian Stewart and consisted of 3 drinks, one of which was a true favorite of mine, a classic Daiquiri.  I proceeded to sit and drink Daiquiris like lemonade all day, because they were made perfectly. Sweet, refreshing and balanced.  My boyfriend FG had ‘The Deck Hand’ which he said tasted like a vanilla spiced Mai tai and found it to be extremely flavorful and delicious also.

The Deck Hand- Sailor Jerry, Orgeat, Lime, Maracshino liquere, Bitters

There were a variety of nibbles going around too. I had a chocolate croissant, yoghurt with granola and a few mini burgers.  It was true “Bartenders Breakfast” type food and all were delicious.

Petit Ermitage is a very quaint boutique hotel hidden away on a residential street.   It has the ‘Celebrity status’ of places like Chateaux Marmont, only it’s not as pretentious. This has a much more intimate feel to it.  The rooftop bar/pool area where we had the event is for hotel guests or members only.  It had the most gorgeous garden area and views of Los Angeles all around and a heated pool that Tatsu ended up in, but I couldn’t bring myself to get in (the wind was too chilly.)  The hotel has a really interesting French/Venetian decor and a fairy tale like quality to it.  The entrance was so beautiful with a floral stained glass arch way and vines growing up the sides. It was like I was entering a ‘Secret Garden’.  For more details and photos of this hotel check out their website here.

The Sporting Life Anniversary was a huge success and I had a great time (probably a little too great from some of the photos emerging!) I look forward to seeing everyone again at next months event. Where and When…we just have to wait and see! 🙂

For the record: Petit Ermitage has a very strict no camera policy but with ‘photographic consent’ we were able to get a couple of photos of the event itself. Some of the photos in this post were taken by myself, however the professional style (i.e Good ones), were taken by Tatsu Oiye.

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Amuse me with your drink names!

A guy walks into a bar with jumper cables. The bartender says, “You can come in, but don’t start anything!”

This week ‘The Fussy One’ (i.e me), has been all over Los Angeles and at more tastings, restaurants and bars than ever before.  I have so much to write about and catch up on, but looking out at the glorious sunshine here today I have decided I am going to start my real reviewing tomorrow and instead put up something ‘light and fun’ for the week-end.

Please note: This is a list of drinks that have a humor factor (name or story) I felt compelled to mention.  I pride myself on my research in to drink origins usually, but many of the drinks in this post are told from ‘a friend of a friend’ and so the original creators are much harder for me to track down.  There are many ‘amusing drink names’ out there but i’m not here to talk about the obvious ‘Screaming Orgasm’ or ‘Slippery Nipple’ shots, although these are sadly drinks that are ordered daily at many bars across America! The drinks in this post don’t contain ‘Peach Schnapps’ or ‘Apple Pucker’, they are more of the ‘Mixologists answer’ to pre fabricated spirits and artificial flavored silly named drinks!

First off I should say how the idea of ‘silly drink names and stories’ began.  On Thursday night I ended up at Sadie in Hollywood (food review coming soon) when my always funny friend behind the bar asked;

“Would you like Ryan Gosling in your mouth?” l responded with “Excuse me? Would I like who in my mouth?!” with a cheeky smile he replied “Would you like a drink consisting of ‘Rye’ and ‘Goslings’? What did you think I meant?”

Everyone at the bar laughed. Needless to say, i’d never heard of that drink and thought it was very funny and clever. Thus began my research in to other ‘amusing drink names’ of its nature.

Rye ‘N Gosling

  • 1oz Rye Whiskey
  • 1oz Goslings Bermuda Rum

Served neat.

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Actually not a bad combination, but pretty strong and not for someone who likes sweet mixed shots like myself.  I have to admit I do have a very sweet tooth and sadly do like some of the drinks out there with artificial flavorings.  I would never dream of ordering them at a mixology bar though, it is a complete insult to the barman’s skill and knowledge to do that.  At a dive however, I see nothing wrong with the odd ‘Washington Apple’. My boyfriend cringes at the thought but those kind of drinks aren’t for sipping leisurely on whilst enjoying the ambience. In general these are shots taken quickly in a dirty dive bar to get drunk quickly and get the hell out!.

Maguey after Amaro

  • 1 1/2oz Calle 23 Repasado
  • 3/4oz Romazotti
  • 3/4oz Fresh Lime juice
  • 1/2oz Agave nectar
  • 1 Egg White

Shake hard with one big ice cube. Serve in a tumbler.

Garnish: 3 Dashes of Miracle Mile ‘Forbidden Bitters’ on top

Bar man FutureGreg of Sadie and Bar Chloe in Santa Monica came up with this one (name came from the help of Dave Fernie of Harvard & Stone) when we were talking about drink puns and I thought it was pretty smart too.  Sounds like the ‘Day after Tomorrow’ when said quickly and is an accurate description of the drink ingredients.  Agave Americana is commonly known as maguey, or American aloe and is a plant found in Mexico used in the process of creating Tequila (they use blue Agave for Tequila). Romazotti is an Amaro.

Statutory Grape (Basically a red grape Gin collins)

  • 4 Grapes
  • 2oz Gin
  • 1oz Lemon Juice
  • 3/4oz Simple Syrup
  • Fill with soda water

Shake and Strain. Then fill with soda water. Serve in collins glass

Garnish: Grapes

This drink name, i’m told, was created by bartender Dave Fernie from Harvard and Stone (he apparently has several great names like this up his sleeve) however I wasn’t able to get a hold of him in time for this post and am not 100% certain of the accuracy of the drink itself.  What I have put up is basically a red grape Collins.  ‘The Collins’ is a drink dating back to Jerry Thomas and was first memorialized in writing in 1876 in his book “The Bon Vivant’s Companion and How to mix drinks’.  This “gin and sparkling lemonade” drink was typically served in a Collins Glass over ice. It is really refreshing and a great one for summer!

Finally, I am going to end with a drink I hope NOONE ever orders.  It is a story that just made me smile so made it to the list.  I have a friend who works in a bar in Manhattan Beach, I asked him of any ‘funny drinks’ he’d heard of recently and proceeded to tell me this story:

“One of my bartender buddies in New York had a customer come in and order “A Lindsay Lohan on the rocks”. Being a mixology bar he said “I’m sorry sir, we only make classic cocktails and pre-prohibition style drinks with fresh fruits here, besides I have never heard of that drink anyway”.  The customer turned to his friends and said “They can’t make that here” Out of curiosity the bartender said, “I’m sure I can make you something better but humor me, what’s in a Lindsay Lohan?” The customer smiled and responded, “Well, it’s a red headed slut with a splash of coke”.”

Needless to say, the bartender didn’t make it for him but thought it was pretty funny all the same and so did I. For those who don’t know, a ‘red headed slut’ is a nasty drink with jaegermeister in, the addition of coca cola is purely for the joke of the drink i’m sure.

Lindsay Lohan

  • 1 1/2oz Jaegermeister
  • 1 1/2oz Peach Schnapps
  • Fill with Cranberry juice
  • Splash of coke

Pour over ice, stir, and serve.

Garnish: Cherry

No joke, this has to be the most disgusting drink ever created.  I have not, and hopefully will never, try this. I urge you to heed my warning! I really dislike Jaegermeister (has a licorice flavor) but with coke and cranberry together? Yuck! This drink is on my site for the story behind it and NOT for it’s drink quality!!!

Anyway hope this made you smile! Go enjoy the sunshine if you’re in LA today 🙂

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