If you ever have the pleasure of meeting Dave Pickerell, you can say you were warned. The man can spin a yarn a mile long, and while he tells his tales of near death experiences, tenure at West Point, or just the intricacies of doing what he does best (making whiskey), he will have you laughing the whole time.
Over a glass of micro-barrel aged whiskey almost ready for release from Woodinville Whiskey Co., we spent some time chatting about adventures at Tales of the Cocktail, the book he’s working on, and why he seems to be the man in demand, trotting around the country stoking the fires of the Craft Distilling revolution.
DrinkGal (DG) – So, standard question, what brings you to Seattle?
Dave Pickerell (DP) – (laughs) The guys at Woodinville! I love these guys to death. I told them sooner …
Did you know it was illegal in Chicago in the 1960’s for a woman to bartend? We didn’t know either until we attended the Ladies Choice: Women Behind Bars seminar at TOTC. Presented by LUPEC (Ladies United for the Preservation of Endangered Cocktails) NYC chapter, the seminar began in late medieval England and ended with some of the promising female talent of today, and in between there were tales of the women who scratched and clawed their way behind the bar to pave the way for us lucky girls today.
Much like other historical subjects, women have been at the helm, and then banished to the back, of public houses, taverns and bars. For a time, a pub was considered to be an extension of the home, and it was nearly a duty of a woman to attend to guests in …
Dry Fly Distilling, Washington State’s first craft distillery since prohibition, has done it again. On Saturday (7/30), Dry Fly Bourbon will be released (in very limited quantities) at the distillery in Spokane, and a release in Seattle is scheduled for August 6. Only 480 bottles will be released to the public, and will only be sold (for $64.95 a pop) at Dry Fly Distilling in Spokane and Interbay Liquor Store in Seattle, each place getting half the bounty.
For those who simply have to try it first, the First Taste Bourbon Release Event will be on Friday, August 5,at the Mayflower Park Hotel from 6:30 to 8 p.m. The distiller guarantees that you will get a taste of the bourbon with the price of admission, and all proceeds will go to Ronald McDonald House Charities and Casting 4 A Cure. Ten …
While bitter apertifs are making a strong comeback, they weren’t always all the rage. In the last ten years or so, we have slowly emerged from a dark age of imbibing: bigger was better, menus were slathered in flavored vodkas, and who can forget Zima? Any bitter liqueurs that grace the shelves today have stood the test of time (most were first made in the 1800′s or earlier) and are a useful component to your collection, or they have an amazing marketing budget and are boozy juggernauts (think Jaegermeister) that can’t be stopped.
Concocted in 1807 by Josef Becher, a Czech apothecary, and Christian Frobrig, an English physician, Becherovka (beck-ur-OHV-kuh) was intended to be what the pair called “the elixir of life”, whatever that means. What they ended up with was a tasty apertif that has enjoyed an underground following of …
July 24, 2010
Ole! It’s National Tequila Day… you know what to do. Find the nearest tequila bar and pony up. Want to know more about tequila? Visit our History section here.
We thought you might like some recipes for this boozy holiday, so may we present the Tequila Martinez and the Paloma:
The Tequila Martinez is a twist on the classic Martinez, twisted by Josh Pape of The Diamond Bar.
1 ½ oz tequila reposado
½ oz Dolin Blanc
1 tsp Lillet Blanc
1 dash peach bitters
Stir all ingredients briskly with ice, strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
2 oz blanco or reposado tequila
6 oz fresh grapefruit soda
½ oz lime juice
Rim a glass with salt, fill with ice. Add all ingredients and stir gently.
A line of grumbling Tales attendees were let into the 6 Rums You’ll Probably Never Taste Again seminar late. Our speaker, Ed Hamilton, was quick to apologize. “One of the rums just arrived.” he explained. The last rum had to be hand carried, as the previous shipment was mostly broken.
The grumbling ceased.
A man who can get bottles of rum hand carried from the distiller is special indeed. Ed Hamilton, as you might be aware, is the creator of the Ministry of Rum website. With a steady voice and long grey hair, he walked us through how he ended up as one of the (if not THE) premier experts on rum. He sailed the Caribbean for almost 20 years, and cultivated friendships with distillers every chance he got. Now he is an importer and a man thoughtfully bringing information to a …
The assumption might be that a seminar about Intellectual Property might be, well, a bit dry. The elevator ride up to the conference was spent chatting with a gent that went the same conference last year, and was curious to see if this year’s was as animated. We were a little taken aback. Uh, animated? It’s legalese, how interesting can it be? Turns out at Tales 2010 the predecessor to our seminar by the same name ended in controversy and a fair amount of misinformation spread by various media outlets. The seminar we were attending was an attempt to clarify and correct the mistakes made.
As the cocktail renaissance continues, bartenders and owners are increasingly interested in protecting their creations. The chance of celebrity and financial gain increases in a culture where the bartender is no longer merely an employee but …
July 22, 2011
Grab a single malt and drink up people, it’s National Scotch Day!
Want to know more about Scotch? Visit our History page on Scotchy Scotchy Scotch…
For those of you who were tuning in last year, it will come as no surprise that once again it is time for Tales of the Cocktail. For those of you new to the rodeo, every July thousands of cocktail enthusiasts from around the world come together in New Orleans for 5 days of thoughtful conversation and a meeting of the minds about the subject of cocktails. Or, as you may surmise, 5 days of heavy drinking in the birthplace of the cocktail and one helluva party town.
This is the largest Tales to date, with just about 20,000 revelers this year, it’s the biggest convention of its kind. Centered around the Hotel Monteleone, home of the famous Carousel Bar and landmark of the French Quarter, the convention this year started on July 20 and ends July 23. A cocktail geeks …
July 19, 2011
Fire up the blender! It’s National Daquiri Day!
Or… don’t. Did you know that originally the Daiquiri was made sans blender?
A group of miners led by Jennings Cox, an engineer living in Cuba (in a place called Daiquiri), created this drink circa 1900. Bacardi just happened to be distilled in the same area, and the miners took to drinking the rum on a regular basis as they treated the local water with it to make it potable.
Cox would frequent a bar named Venus, and whether it was by necessity or design, he would order Bacardi with sugar and lime. After a while the locals caught on, and since the miners were from Daiquiri, the name became associated with a drink made with rum, sugar and lime. Between this drink, the Cuba Libre, and Hemingway’s penchant for drinking the …