Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘column’ Category

texas-guinan-photo-post-cardWith the 75th Anniversary of Prohibition’s Repeal upon us, the ladies of LUPEC turn our thoughts to late, great Prohibition-era forebroads like Texas Guinan. We wrote a brief bio of the little devil in this week’s Dig; to read more about this actress-turned-Speakeasy-owner, check out Pinky Gonzales’ Women’s History Month toast on Tex.

Here are a few more fun facts* on the ol’ gal, for your reading pleasure:

  • When the Depression hit, Texas and the 40 chorus girls who worked her Speakeasy took the show on the road with plans to open in Paris. She was denied the permits necessary to open and entry to France. Ever the savvy marketer, Texas simply dubbed the show “Too Hot for Paris” and took the U.S. by storm.
  • “Miss Guinan was one of the finest and most grateful patients I have ever attended,” Dr. J. A. Machlachlan, who attended to Tex on her deathbed, told the New York Times. “She told me she had never touched alcohol in her life.”
  • Though she was infamous for having her joints raided and even padlocked by the fuzz, Tex never admitted to serving alcohol in her clubs.
  • Guinan has been credited with adding such gems to the vernacular as “butter and egg men” (to describe her well-heeled patrons) and for asking club goers to “give the little ladies a great, big hand.”
  • Texas closely studied contemporaries Lillian Russell and Mae West, and “while all three women could sing and act, only Texas could ride a horse (named Pieface) and shoot.”

*By facts we mean items we dredged up on her from old New York Times clippings and the Web. Tex wastexas_guinan-b larger than life and was commonly remembered that way; we invite you to take these anecdotes with a grain of salt.

Boston kicks off celebrations for the 75th Anniversary of Repeal Day TONIGHT at Eastern Standard! The staff will transform the restaurant into a Jazz Age Speakeasy, complete with barricaded entrance and guys and dolls dressed to the nines. Entrance to this party will cost ‘ya – $120 gets you pre-dinner canapes and cocktails (at 6:30 p.m.), dinner and cocktails (at 7:30 p.m.), dancing and more cocktails, with a late-night breakfast served for the last ones still standing circa-1 a.m. If you can’t make the scene ’til later, $40 gets you in for drinks, dancing, and mayhem at 10 p.m. Rumor has it Texas Guinan herself might be there – will you?

The actual anniversary of Prohibition’s Repeal is tomorrow, so you can keep the party going all night/day/night if you like. Why not stop toast Prohibition’s Repeal at a venue that occupies a former speakeasy’s space? The Marliave downtown fits this bill, as does Stanza dei Sigari in the North End. And remember, it’s always more fun if you dress up.

Cin cin!

Web

Read Full Post »

by Pink Lady

Hanky Panky’s column in this week’s Dig advocates building your home bar on a cocktail by cocktail basis: each week, choose a favorite cocktail and purchase the items necessary to mix it at home. With this method, you will never be left wondering what you can mix with the items you have on hand while adding to your encyclopedic knowledge of cocktail recipes. Below are some recipes to help get you started, economically of course — who knows what will happen to the market next.

For gin, we recommended the Hearst. You’ll need all of these ingredients for many other cocktails, so its a great way to invest your money from the start.

HEARST
2 ounces London dry gin
1 ounce Italian vermouth
dash of orange bitters
dash of Angostura bitters

Stir and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with lemon oil.

This Boston original gets a bottle of rye in your liquor cabinet, and fresh grenadine in your fridge. Where they both belong.

WARD EIGHT
2 ounces rye whisky
.75 ounce lemon juice
.75 ounce orange juice
1 teaspoon grenadine

Shake ingredients with cracked ice in a cocktail shaker; strain into a chilled cocktail glass and enjoy, or strain it over cracked ice in a highball & top off with seltzer. Refreshing! (This is David Wondrich’s Esquire version of the drink. There is much debate over whether the proper recipe for this drink: I invite you to try on your own and leave feedback!)

The Hibiscus cocktail is a great way to deal with some light rum and make sure you’ve got French vermouth in the cabinet, too.

HIBISCUS
From Trader Vic’s Bartender’s Guide, Revised.
Juice of 1/4 lemon
1 teaspoon French vermouth
1 teaspoon grenadine
1.5 oz light Puerto Rican Rum
Shake with ice cubes. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

This LUPEC Boston namesake will trick out your liquor cabinet with a few fun extra ingredients, and make tequila feel quite at home among the other bottles.

PINKY GONZALES
(As adapted from Trader Vic’s recipe by LUPEC Boston member, Pinky Gonzales in the Little Black Book of Cocktails.)
2.5 oz tequila blanco
.5 oz fresh lime juice
.5 os orange Curacao
.25 oz agave nectar
.25 oz orgeat syrup
2 cups crushed ice
1 sprig mint & .5 squeezed lime for garnish

Shake all ingredients and pour into a tiki mug or tall glass filled with crushed ice and the reserved 1/2 lime. Garnish with mint sprig & straw.

Oh, how your liquor cabinet grows!


Read Full Post »

by Pink Lady

Hopefully you all caught the debut of the LUPEC Boston column in this week’s issue of The Weekly Dig. As promised, here’s a little more info on our favorite recipe for the Pink Lady, and a few notes on why I thought it an appropriate choice as the very first cocktail for our very first Dig column.

At first glance The Pink Lady appears to bear all the trappings of a “girly” drink – a feminine name, an approachable frothiness, a pastel hue. But the Pink Lady is no drink for the faint of heart: its tart-dry flavor is a far cry from the cloyingly sweet “girly” cocktails we’re wary of in this modern era of drinking. And its boozy gin & apple brandy base packs a whallop. As Eric Felten wrote in his Wall Street Journal column on the topic, “though a tasty drink worthy of inclusion in the cocktail canon, the Pink Lady has found its reputation dogged by association with a dubious aesthetic.” It is a cocktail that is easily underestimated. After enjoying one or two of these, though, I’m sure you’ll agree: ladylike as she is, the Pink Lady kicks ass and takes names. She’s a LUPEC kind of gal. Our favorite recipe is below:

PINK LADY COCKTAIL
1.5 oz gin
.5 oz applejack
.5 oz fresh lemon juice
.5 oz grenadine (preferably homemade)
1 egg white
Combine ingredients in a shaker and shake vigorously without ice.

Add ice; shake continue vigorous shaking. Strain into your favorite vintage cocktail glass. There are two classic cocktail lessons inherent in the making of a Pink Lady:

Lesson #1: Quality of ingredients: your drinks will only taste as good as the stuff you use to make them. Most of the cocktails the ladies of LUPEC Boston are intent on reviving were invented in the days before preservatives kept juices intact for weeks on end. When trying them out at home, you too should use the freshest ingredients you can find. For the Pink Lady you’ll need fresh lemons and we highly recommend using homemade grenadine: the flavor is leaps and bounds beyond the stuff you can buy in a bottle, and it’s really simple to make. Hanky Panky’s recipe is below.

Grenadine

Combine equal parts pomegranate juice (Pom, par example) and sugar in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer for 7 minutes. Remove from heat and add 1 tsp orange flower water for every 1/2 cup pomegranate juice used. Cool.

Lesson #2: Eggs in cocktails: We know, we know. The whole “egg thing” is a really weird concept for many classic cocktail novices, but I promise you, your trip down classic cocktail lane won’t be nearly as fulfilling if you can’t get over it. As you cozy up to the raw-egg-in-a-drink idea, ask yourself: when is the last time you ever heard of someone in America actually getting salmonella? And if I offered you a taste of delicious raw batter from the cookies I’ve just whipped up, would you decline? I thought not. If you’re still having doubts, check out this recent article in the New York Times: see, eggs are HUGE in New York.

Once you’re ready to take the egg plunge, get your biceps ready. For egg cocktails to reach the delicious, frothy state that is their hallmark, you’ve got to shake the bejesus out of them. First, however, the egg white must be emulsified, hence the instruction to combine all ingredients in your shaker and give ‘em a good shake BEFORE adding ice. A very insightful post on the topic can be found on the Robert Huegel’s Explore the Pour blog: the author advocates shaking ingredients ten times, then add just slightly more ice than the amount of standing liquid in your shaker.

After adding ice, shake…and shake…and shake…and shake your Pink Lady, remembering all the while that egg cocktails take time — a LONG time — but once they are perfect and complete in your cocktail glass, just seconds from slipping down your throat, they are oh so worth the labor and the wait.

Like anything worth doing, really.

Cin-cin!

Pink Lady photo borrowed from the Thinking of Drinking blog.

Read Full Post »

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 3,317 other followers