The Cheat Sheet: The Professor’s Guide to the Best Cocktail and Spirits Links

Here's a hand-crafted collection of links to brighten your week.

  • In the San Francisco Chronicle, Gary Regan writes about cocktails and poetry, including a recipe for The Mute Appeal.
  • In the Washington Post, Jason Wilson discusses what's happening with port today — the answer is: not much. But it is increasingly finding its way into cocktails.
  • In Esquire Magazine, David Wondrich explores the proliferation of world whiskeys that are hitting the market.
  • In the New York Times, Jeremy W. Peters looks for the perfect martini while out on the campaign trail.
  • Proving that international whiskeys are all the rage these days, the Times runs a piece on the growing popularity in the U.S. of Indian Whiskey.
  • In the Times-Picayune, Todd A. Price writes about the new version of Mr. Boston's Official Bartender's Guide. Although some of the previous versions of this book were lousy, this one is solid. I've used it several times.
  • The Los Angeles Times Magazine writes about smoking cocktails, including a bunch of recipes.
  • In CLASS Magazine, Simon Difford and Ian Cameron round up five green melon liqueurs. The version from Gabriel Boudier gets the best marks.
  • Also in CLASS, Camper English visits Seattle's best bars.
  • In Charleston, bourbon is big business. I've never even heard of Virgil Kaine Bourbon & Ginger, but it sounds tasty.
  • Serious Eats asks: which cocktail ingredients should you buy and which should you make yourself? My position is: if you can easily buy a high-quality ingredient without spending a bunch of money, why go to the trouble of making it?
  • Also in Serious Eats, a guide to blended Scotch whisky. Blended Scotch is made by mixing different single malts along with other grain whiskies, and is the most popular category of scotch whisky. (They previously discussed single malt Scotches.)
  • Speaking of which…Wayne Curtis tells how to make your own spiced rum. This might actually be worth it, as most spiced rums I've tried aren't very good.
  • Liquor.com shares some advice on stocking your home bar.
  • Following up on last week's post on the Manhattan, a recipe for the Red Hook, another popular variation on the classic cocktail.
  • Speaking of the Manhattan…Bartenders Dushan Zaric and Brooke Arthur show you how to make one, along with a Rob Roy and Whiskey Sour.
  • In more Brooklyn news (Red Hook is a neighborhood in Brooklyn), rum is gaining popularity in the borough. As well it should!
  • Even more New York news: Hearth, a bar in NYC, has a new line-up of New York-themed cocktails. The Maria Tallchief sounds interesting.
  • Ashlee Casserly is trying to introduce poitin (Irish white whiskey) to America. I've seen a couple bottles of this raw spirit (sometimes called potcheen) floating around, but never tried it.
  • The Spir.It tells you how to infuse your own spirits.
  • Is stout and pancakes the new breakfast of champions? Seems unlikely — never cared much for stout.
  • Following the trend of spirits infused with honey, two new ones are hitting the market: Barenjager Honey & Bourbon, and Bushmills Irish Honey. I haven't tried any of the honey spirits yet, but I'd give these a shot.

That's it for this week. Cheers!

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