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Check Out My Wassail Recipe in Nation’s Restaurant News

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I love Thanksgiving so much. It gives me the opportunity to enjoy four of my favorite activities: Going to the grocery store. Cooking. Making drinks. Having dinner with friends. (No, really, going to the grocery store is one of my favorite things in the world.) I first read about Wassail – the ancient wintertime blend | Read More

Wassail

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I cobbled this recipe together from a number of sources many years ago, and have spent every Thanksgiving making it for friends. It’s always a popular winter warmer, and everyone spends the post-prandial hours sipping large mugs of wassail on the deck.

Not the Kind of Motorcycle News You Want to Hear

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Since August, Cameron Bogue of MotoTails.com has been on a year-long motorcycle quest from Vancouver, B.C. to the southern tip of Argentina. He and three friends have been stopping at microdistilleries, sampling the wares, and creating new cocktails inspired by the local ingredients. I’ve been following their progress closely and I’ve been talking him up | Read More

An Open Letter to Grey Goose Vodka

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Dear Grey Goose vodka; It has come to my attention, during many incidents over the course of several years, that your wonderful product is determined to kill me. I am not referring to the ubiquitous hangover that so many of my clients have endured as a result of partaking in your fine product, but rather | Read More

Holdin’ Steady at Number Two

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Yours truly has been voted Second Best Bartender by the good people of Eugene. I bow graciously to my longtime friend Ty Connor, who came in first, and apparently invented the Vodka Rickey (Ty, I knew you were quite a bit older than I, but wow!) Also coming in second place was this very website! | Read More

Another Reason Why Oregon Rocks: Oregon Whiskey

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So, Oregon is the best, as everyone knows, but here’s another reason why: Oregon whiskey. The November issue of Food and Wine Magazine has a great story by Nick Fauchald on page 170 about the rise of Oregon whiskeys, and credits our plentiful raw ingredients (grain, water, wood) and do-it-yourself spirit for a new revolution | Read More

Mixology Monday: Food Pairings

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To be honest with you, I didn’t really have much of a chance to prepare for this month’s Mixology Monday. In fact, when Natalie emailed me a reminder earlier today, my first thought was, “Oh, f*ck!”. And as much as I loves me some Mixology Monday, I’ve been a little out of the loop this | Read More

Ten Books Every Bartender Should Own

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Recently, over at the Epicurious blog they had a post detailing their ten must-read books for cooks and gastronomes. I figured, “What a great idea, I should steal this for my own website!” So here are my recommendations for the top ten books any bartender or home mixologist should keep within arm’s reach at all | Read More

A Pitcher of Bloody Mary Mix

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It’s football time here in the university town I call home, so on Saturday mornings my kitchen often becomes the epicenter of pre-game madness. I like to put out a bottle of vodka, a pitcher of my Bloody Mary mix, and a tray of fun garnishes for the fans and let people put together their | Read More

How to Make Your Own Gin Without a Still

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There aren’t many spirits that inspire such passionate opinions as gin does. I know vodka drinkers who recoil in horror when confronted with a bottle of Tanqueray, and gin drinkers who would rather abstain completely than suffer through a Grey Goose martini. But what many people don’t realize is that gin and vodka begin life | Read More

Margarita with Cadillac Foam and Sea Salt

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I never really venture too far outside of my comfort zone when it comes to cocktails. Sure, I’ve tried some strange combinations before, but when all is said and done I usually tend to stick to the classics. Until this evening. Maybe it was all the late-summer sun I got at the pool this afternoon | Read More

House Spirits Distillery Tour and Cocktail Tasting

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I was in Portland again this weekend, taking a tour of House Spirits Distillery and meeting with some West Coast cocktail luminaries. I’ve been a big fan of the House Spirits products for quite some time, so this was quite the excursion for me. I was met there by some other like-minded enthusiasts: Erik Ellestad | Read More

The Eugene Cocktail Summit

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Sometimes living in Eugene, Oregon means that you have a smaller circle of people who share similar interests as yourself. Driving an hour and a half to Portland is always an option, but sometimes you just wish you could play at home. A select few of us local cocktail enthusiasts gathered today to experiment with | Read More

The Buckthorn Bruise

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Earlier today at the Cocktail Summit, we played with seaberries (aka sea berries or sea-buckthorn). If you haven’t tried seaberries before, they’re a small, soft fruit full of a milky, citrusy, tart juice – slightly astringent and very rich. They’re unlike anything I had ever tried. I had been messing around with some wine syrups | Read More

The Great American Distillers Festival

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Yesterday my co-pilot at El Vaquero, Scott, and I made our way up to Portland at nine in the morning for the Great American Distillers Festival – a feat not easily accomplished by two bartenders who had closed the bar the previous night. The list of products available for tasting was short – this ain’t | Read More