This summer, Mexico comes to the Northwest! On August 18, 2012, the Phinney Neighborhood Center in Seattle will become the site of the very first Northwest Tequila Fest (NWTF), a premium Tequila, Mezcal and Sotol tasting experience.
With music, tasty bites and the native spirits from our neighbor to the south, NWTF will be a little slice of Mexico, with libations for the seasoned tequila connoisseur as well as those looking to fall in love with the agave spirits.
For those that crave a little competition, the Cocktail Contest will feature tequila-inspired cocktails from bartenders across the Puget Sound area. The competition will happen live at NWTF, the winner being chosen by a panel of judges from around the country.
Northwest Tequila Fest benefits The Benevolent Guild, who are are committed exclusively to assisting children, charities, and support groups in the Puget Sound …
Happy (Peruvian) National Pisco Sour Day! As the “official” cocktail of both Chile and Peru and the only well known cocktail with pisco in it, this cocktail carries a lot of responsibility as ambassador to the cocktail swilling world.
A distillate of grapes, pisco is technically a brandy and popped up exactly where you might expect it to: in the winemaking regions of South America. It was originally made as an alternative to brandy from Spain, called orujo, back in the 16th century. Trade wasn’t nearly as quick as it is these days, and the settlers got tired of waiting (and probably paying) for the brandy from the homeland. The alternative, while not the same as the tipple they were used to, was quite good, and became the definitive distillate of the area.
In the early 20th Century, cocktails were enjoying a …
Monday is Martin Luther King Day, a day when many reflect on how far this country has come in the fight for civil rights. Many of us think we still have a ways to go, but it’s worth a moment to think about the good Doctor, and all he stood for. Without him, it’s hard to say where we would be as a society.
He was born Michael King Jr. on January 15th, 1929, and every year millions of people get a long holiday weekend in the dead of winter when it’s too cold to BBQ, and the only logical thing is to cozy up indoors. In honor of the occasion, we gathered up some classic cocktails to commemorate and celebrate his life. Is this a classic drinking holiday? No. But why not find reasons to celebrate every day of life? …
November 7, 2011
National Gin Day, a day for reflecting on the attributes and troubled history of Gin. Celebrate with a trip to your local speakeasy, and order a martini the way they used to… vermouth and all.
Craving more knowledge about Gin? Visit our History section and find out what all the fuss is about.
Old Tom gin is making a bit of a comeback! It was popular back when gin was made in bathtubs and Old Tom was a sweeter than London Dry, mostly to temper the harness of the distillate. For a long time you just couldn’t find a bottle of Old Tom, but if you look you will find it starting to pop up again. It’s great for mixing cocktails, and will be completely different than cocktails with the the typical London Dry. Enjoy!
Old Tom Cocktail
2 oz Old Tom …
October 22 – 23 2011
The 7th Annual Great American Distillers Festival is a gathering of small distillers from across the country who come to Oregon – the Mecca of craft distilling, to share their products, their passion and their expertise in handcrafting spirits. There will be tastings, seminars, a mixology contest for bartenders and more!
Happening during the second Portland Cocktail week, the Great American Distillers Festival will be happening at the Left Bank Annex on Saturday and Sunday from 1pm to 7pm.
For more information, visit www.distillersfestival.com
October 20- 24 2011
It’s the second year! Portland Cocktail Week is a celebration of the craft of bartending and fine spirits that takes place each October in Portland, Oregon.
From a Bartenders Run to Kick Cancer’s Ass to Yacht Rocking (with rum, of course) in Lola’s Room, there a little something for every imbiber out there! For more information, visit www.portlandcocktailweek.com. All ticket sales benefit the Oregon Bartenders Guild.
October 20, 2011
It’s National Brandied Fruit Day! What is brandied fruit? It’s pretty simple: fruit, sugar, and brandy.
The word brandy originally comes from the Dutch word brandewijn, which means burnt wine. Dutch traders introduced brandy to Northern Europe and well as France and Spain during the 16th century, and the name stuck.
Brandied Cherries (pictured left) is one of our favorite garnish on a good cocktail. Need a simple recipe for these treats? Here you go:
2 lb. fresh Bing cherries
2 c. brandy
1 c. water
1 c. sugar
Wash cherries and cut off half the stems; place in jar and cover with brandy. Cover jar, but do not seal. Let stand overnight.
Boil sugar and water together 10 minutes; skim surface and cool. Drain brandy from cherries and add to syrup; stir well and pour back into jar over cherries and seal tight. Let stand …
October 16 – 17, 2011
New York, NY
This is the first major international spirits competition with trade-only judges from top to bottom that consist of people who are buyers from the top retail stores, restaurant and bar owners, distributors and importers. Unlike other competitions, these judges have purchasing power and the ability to make a direct impact on brand sales.
The second major difference in this competition is that each submission will be not only placed in its product category but also its pricing category. Therefore a spirit will be judged in its category along with other spirits in its same price range. Each category will have its own pricing levels and are listed on the submission form. So for example a Whiskey that retails for $50 will be judged with other Whiskeys in that price range and not with Whiskies that …
Today is National Punch Day!
Punches are a the cocktails of yesterday and a re-emerging art form in the cocktail world.
May we suggest: The Punch Bowl by Dan Searing for recipes and a good dose of boozy history. For some immediate gratification, here are a couple punch recipes you can make for yourself, right now.
Planters Punch (Trader Vic’s recipe)
3 oz Jamaican rum
Juice of one lime
½ oz lemon juice
½ oz grendine
¼ teaspoon bar sugar
Shake all ingredients and strain into an ice filled glass. Garnish with an orange slice and maraschino cherry.
The best Bourbon Milk Punch we have found was (of course) at the Carousel Bar in the Hotel Monteleone in New Orleans. This recipe is a good one too, one we put together with a little tinkering.
Bourbon Milk Punch
2 oz bourbon
½ oz Demerara syrup
½ oz Vanilla extract
½ oz cream
2 oz milk
August 25, 2011
It’s National Whiskey Sour Day!
Grab you favorite bottle of Whiskey and get crackin!
For more information about whiskey, you can check out our History page.
The Whiskey Sour is just one version of a basic sour recipe. You can substitute any type of your favorite liquor and turn it into a sour too.
1 oz fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 oz rye or bourbon whiskey
Shake all ingredients over ice, strain into sour or old fashioned glass filled with ice. Garnish with a lemon wedge and a cherry.