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Matusalem Gran Reserva 15

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I see a fair amount of liquor in my average day. I work in a bar and am surrounded by 200+ bottles of the stuff for ten hours a day. Liquor reps drop by the bar and leave me samples of new products on a regular basis. I get press releases, forwarded emails, RSS feeds, | Read More

Mixology Monday: New Orleans

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I spent the week leading up to Tales of the Cocktail revisiting the Vieux Carré cocktail, which was created at the Carousel Bar at the Hotel Monteleone by bartender Walter Bergeron in 1938. I tried several of the recipe variations out there on unsuspecting customers all week long, perfecting the Vieux Carré before getting on | Read More

Autumn Leaves

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This recipe is part two of my New Orleans Mixology Monday post. For the complete story behind this drink, please click here. And here’s a short video of the Autumn Leaves shot by Philip Beech:

Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page…

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What to drink with What you Eat …are coming to Eugene! The authors of one of my favorite books (and many others) are going to be in town for a very special pairing dinner at one of my favorite restaurants (and previous employer: hi, guys!). I just made my reservation after receiving this in my | Read More

Swag Off ’08: We Have a Winner!

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Since I was deep in the thick of competition and couldn’t take notes, I enlisted the services of Portland, Oregon food writer Ms. Lizzy Caston. Following is her report. What does a group of creative bartenders do with bags full of promotional alcohol samples, mixers and condiments? Hold a contest to determine who can make | Read More

I’m Over Here!

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If you’ve noticed a dearth of posts from me while I’m at Tales of the Cocktail, please join me at the collaborative cocktail blog, TalesBlog.com I’m attempting to liveblog some of the events I’m attending, and my colleagues are doing the same. I will, of course, be posting lots of photos and sharing some of | Read More

Tales of the Cocktail: Day Zero

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I’m calling this “Day Zero” since the events don’t officially start until tomorrow. Although, you’d never know it by the sheer quantity of cocktail luminaries amassed in the French Quarter right now. My day started with an internal miscommunication about the actual date of my departure (that’s what I get for booking the trip three | Read More

On My Way!

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To Tales of the Cocktail, that is. You see, after last year’s debacle there was no way I was going to miss this one. In fact, I was so excited about going that I somehow showed up to the airport a day early, embarrassed as heck and thanking the nice young lady up and down | Read More

Follow Me on Twitter!

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Thanks to the recommendation of some good friends this weekend, I’ve added Twitter to my list of preferred web applications. Their sage advice couldn’t have come at a better time: I’ve been busy readying myself for Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans next week, and have been concerned about how I’ll connect with everyone | Read More

The Beauty Beneath

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“Try this.” The wine rep looked determined. The wine salespeople in town usually know better than to waste their time with me, as I have little-to-no influence on the wine list. If it’s a distilled product you’re trying to push – and if it’s not vodka – then I’m the man behind the bar to | Read More

How to Make Sangrita

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Not to be confused with the Spanish wine-and-fruit-based alcoholic beverage sangria, sangrita (meaning “little blood”) is a traditional accompaniment to a tequila served completo; a non-alcoholic sipper that cleanses the palate between fiery doses of agave. Years ago I was taught that sangrita is a blend of tomato and orange juices, with the addition of | Read More

Six More Months Until Repeal Day!

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I just looked at the calendar and realized that today is a crucial halfway-point in the year – and that I only have six months to prepare myself for my favorite American holiday: Repeal Day! Last year was a big year for Repeal Day. We saw the launch of RepealDay.org, the official home of Repeal | Read More

How to Make Your Own Tonic Water

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This subject has been covered before, but after numerous requests and some positive encouragement from a good friend this weekend I have decided to post my version of homemade tonic water. The base for this recipe came from my friend Kevin Ludwig, who pioneered craft tonic water in Portland. His recipe can be found on | Read More

Food Pairings: Dinner and Absinthe

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I love to cook, but sometimes after a long weekend it can feel like work to me. After a begrudged visit to the grocery store last night, I came home with a beautiful head of butter lettuce, some Oregon gorgonzola cheese, locally-grown Evonuk hazelnuts and two Tombo tuna steaks. I knew what would put a | Read More

How to Reduce by Half

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Some of you are here to find out how to make my pinot gris reduction for the East of Eden, and as the directions will tell you, you’ll need to reduce the wine by half. But how can you tell when a liquid is reduced by half without pouring it into a measuring cup every | Read More