You may think this the title refers to some sort-of ear-bursting occurrence, but actually, it’s a taste-exploding occurrence, because it refers to the new tonic syrups available in Washington state – which are awesome and which will change your life. Not just for G&Ts, but for many more drinks, these crafted-with-care ingredients are swell. So well that I wrote a tonic syrup Seattle magazine article, which you should read, so you can be swell, too. So, get your Tonic Boom on.
It’s the day after Thanksgiving – are you having your Gizmo yet? If so, why not? If you don’t know what it is, head on over to an earlier Spiked Punch post for your Gizmo recipe and story. Now, I have to go back to drinking my Gizmo.
Hello young cocktail lovers. I’ve detailed in posts below and then farther below some Seattle Magazine articles that I’ve written. But I’ve not mentioned a number of blog posts I’ve recently being doing as well. And darnit, they need your attention (if you’ve already seen all of them, then of course ignore this and go read your copy of The Essential Doctor Strange Volume 1. While having a drink. Cause the Doc isn’t a teetotaler. Oh no, not at all. He may drink mostly mystical mixes, but he likes to unwind with a cocktail after whipping up Dormammu or Shuma-Gorath. That’s how the Doc rolls people). So, here’s a nice list of recent posts from the Seattle Mag blog, posts that just may change your life:
Farmer’s is not, sadly, a new Seattle hotspot serving Fish House Punch (that classic punch from Philly via the Schuylkill Fishing Company sometime in the 1700s). It is, however, my pal Shane Farmer’s house, where he recently when punch crazy for his house-warming/birthday bash, purchasing two punch bowls (yes, I said two) for the occasion so he could serve not only this mix but the delightful Don’t Just Stand There (a recipe for which can be found in Good Spirits). Now that, friends, is a fella that knows how to throw a party. If you ever run into him at the bar (any bar, that is) I’d go about picking his brain for party tips (not literally “picking his brain” by the way, if there were any mad scientists thinking they’d actually pry open his skull for said tips. Just ask him why dontcha?). This recipe’s from Dark Spirits, by the way. And this photo was taken at the actual referenced Shane Farmer party above, by the way:
Block of ice (or cracked ice, if necessary)
1 750-milliliter bottle dark rum
15 ounces Cognac
7-1/2 ounces peach brandy
7-1/2 ounces freshly-squeezed lemon juice
7-1/2 ounces Simple Syrup
1. Add the ice to a punch bowl (fill about three quarters full if using cracked ice, and feel free to crack the block a bit if needed). Add the rum, cognac, brandy, juice, and syrup. Stir 10 times, while humming fishy songs or hymns to Pennsylvania.
2. Stir 10 more times. Serve in punch cups or wine glasses.
Well, we’re back (from Italy, that is. If you didn’t know it, wife Nat and I and our two dogs have been enjoying our Italian pre-tirement for the last seven or so months. Interested? Read more about it). Re-entry into life into Seattle hasn’t been rough, but neither has it been a box of chocolates filled with booze. To ease the edges, and to help remind me of things from here I missed, when there, without forgetting what I loved there, I whipped up the following cocktail last night, and think I’ll be whipping up a few more over the next couple of days. See, bourbon is hard to track down in the I-tal, and so I wanted the drink to be serious on the bourbon side. But, I miss (already) having loads of Italian liqueurs in every café and bar, so I wanted hints of Italy surrounding the bourbon. Which led to the Welcome Back, Weary Traveler:
2-1/2 ounces bourbon (I used Blanton’s, but others may suffice)
Picked up some dark rum not too long back (at Domini, the best winery in central Italy, funny enough–Diego, the owner and swell fella, is nice enough to stock some other, non-wine, bottles as well) and it lead to me craving a cocktail that had more of an island, and a little less of an Italian feel, but as this was made while living in Italy, and features an Italian tamarind syrup (though really, it’s thicker than a regular syrup—almost molasses-y) by Carlo Erba (a Milan company), I still consider it an Italian drink. Hence the name, which hits both sides of the drink:
1-1/2 ounces dark rum
3/4 ounce pineapple juice
1/2 ounce freshly squeeze lime juice
1/2 Carlo Erba Tamarindo
Lime slice for garnish
Pineapple slice for garnish
1. Fill a cocktail shaker halfway full with ice cubes. Add the rum, juices, and tamarind. Shake exceptionally well (that tamarind needs a bit of serious shaking to play nice).
2. Strain into a cocktail glass, or whatever good glass is nearby. Garnish with the lime slice and pineapple slice (both to add flavor and in case you need a snack).
In case you missed (somehow, since they’ve been on rerun in a seemingly endless loop) an episode of the last season of the Good Spirits’ Cocktail to Cocktail Hour, well I, for one, feel sorry for you. Cause it was the rootin’est, tootin’est, drinkin’est, laughin’est, stylin’est, lovin’est, season yet! And you shouldn’t be expected to go another evening, no, not another hour without catching up on every last second (even the second where my tie is slightly off kilter. That one second). And you know what? I’m going to make sure you don’t miss a second, with a quick list of links to all the season’s episodes right here, in easy-to-read bulleted fashion. Thanks again for your Cocktail to Cocktail support, and thanks (of course) to director and co-writer Dr. G and the fine production, advertising, marketing, design, and support staff at AK TV. Now, on with the show:
As our producer and director owns stock in the BBC, our “season” lasts a mere six episodes (much like the Snuff Box). Which means (grab those hankies now) this is the last episode in this new season. And, if I can preen the feathers a bit, it’s a humdinger. In this finale, I’ll not only sing and dance (really!), I’ll also teach you to make the somewhat sultry Bedroom Eyes, a fine number that puts I think I delicious cocktail capper on another season of the show about cocktails and drinking and good times, the Good Spirits Cocktail to Cocktail Hour. But wait! Before clicking on the “play” button and icing up the shaker though, I must take another moment to thank our sponsors in writing (it’s a contractual thing—hey, every little helps). So, raise your glasses in a cheer for Holt’s Hangover Helpers, Fuller’s Homemade Liqueurs, Cash and Harley’s Fund for Young Bartenders, Butler’s House of Garnishes. And of course, raise another glass in a cheer for yourself, our viewers. Without you, well, we’d have to drink more ourselves.
The Man Behind the Evening's PlansA.J. Rathbun is a freelance food and entertainment writer, poet and author, a frequent guest on the Everyday Food program (Martha Stewart Living/Sirius satellite radio), and is a contributor to culinary & entertainment magazines such as Every Day with Rachael Ray, The Food Network Magazine, Real Simple, Wine Enthusiast, and many others. Of course, there's so much more to it than that...Read More