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Archive for the ‘Weekly Dig’ Category

*Recent ruminations from LUPEC Boston, as originally published in The Weekly Dig.

by Pink Lady

In a few short days, HRH Prince William will marry Kate Middleton, making royal history as can only be done once a generation. What better way to toast this occasion than with a cocktail with a royal pedigree of its own? This Friday, the ladies of LUPEC will be sipping The Prince of Wales’s Cocktail.

The current Prince of Wales is Charles, the longest serving heir apparent in history (he was only nine when he became as such). Prince Albert Edward was once in Prince Charles’ shoes, during which time his Queen Mum Victoria pretty much excluded him from political activity. With all that free time on his hands Edward did “what anybody else would have,” writes David Wondrich in Imbibe: “He got grumpy and he got loose. Mistresses and mischief ensued.”

Prince Albert Edward was something of a playboy, to be sure, and came to exemplify the leisured elite in his day. His accession to the throne ushered in the Edwardian era, the exact opposite of the buttoned up Victorian period: a time of increased social mobility, loosened bodices for women, and scientific and technological innovation. Leisure sports became all the rage with the upper classes, and let’s not forget that ultimate game-changer—the automobile.

In his many years as Prince of Wales, Albert Edward had many occasions to imbibe. We’re thrilled he came up with this, his namesake take on the newly evolving genre of libation: The Cocktail.

The Prince of Wales Cocktail
Adapted from Imbibe! By David Wondrich

1.5 oz rye whiskey
Crushed ice
A small square of pineapple
Dash Angostura bitters
Lemon peel
.25 tsp maraschino
1 oz Champagne
1 tsp sugar

Put the sugar in the bottom of a mixing glass with bitters and .5 tsp water. Stir to dissolve. Add rye, maraschino, and pineapple chunk, fill 2/3 with cracked ice, and shake brutally to crush pineapple. “Strain into a chilled cocktail glass, add the cold Champagne, and deploy the twist. And smile.”

CIN-CIN!

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*Recent ruminations from LUPEC Boston, as originally published in the Weekly Dig.

by Pink Lady

Welcome to Boston, spring! We look forward to raising a glass in your honor, inspired by a winter jaunt this LUPEC lady took to San Francisco in March.

San Francisco is the land of eternal spring, it seems. Consistently crisp, rainy and damp, even on a bad weather day, the visit was a refreshing and reviving respite from our frozen home. My internal clock still said “hibernate” but it only felt right to drink according to our environment. A trip to the legendary Bourbon & Branch speakeasy in the Tenderloin district resulting in some delightful seasonal sipping at the hands of mixologist Darren Crawford.

The spot now occupied by Bourbon & Branch was a legit speakeasy from 1921 to 1933. First listed in the San Francisco Telephone Directory as “The Ipswitch — A Beverage Parlor,” it was purchased by industrious businessman John J. Russell in 1923, and operated from then on as “JJ Russell’s Cigar Shop.” His connections to notorious Vancouver bootleggers kept the alcohol flowing and snooping Prohibition Agents at bay. Vestiges of the venue’s sordid past still remain, including five secret tunnels. One of which, dubbed the “Ladies Exit,” granted safe passage to an exit a whole block away.

Next time you find yourself in the City by the Bay, you must pay this spot a visit—even if you’re over the Speakeasy thing and are tempted to order an illegal Cosmo just to be a pain in the ass. Don’t do that. Do be a polite guest and allow your arm-garter-clad bartender to make you a delightful concoction.

Bourbon & Branch and San Francisco’s eternal spring days are 3,000 miles away. Fortunately we can relive the moment here, with real spring and this refreshing, herbaceous libation.

BLACK ROSE
Created by Darren Crawford, Bourbon & Branch

A few sprigs rosemary
2 oz. gin
.75 oz. Lemon Juice
.5 oz. Honey Syrup
1 dash Black Pepper Tincture

Gently muddled rosemary with honey in a mixing glass. Add other ingredients and shake. Serve on the rocks in an Old Fashioned Glass. Garnish with a sprig of rosemary.

To make Black Pepper Tincture: macerate black peppercorns in grain alcohol until desired spiciness is achieved.

Cin-cin!

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Ruminations from the ladies of LUPEC Boston, as originally published in The Weekly Dig

by Pink Lady

The ladies of LUPEC understand the importance of matching a stylish outfit to your stylish cocktail. We spend a good deal of time educating about the bygone era. Cocktail Culture, a new exhibit at the Rhode Island School of Design’s Museum of Art will explore the rest: the clothing, accessories, trends and culture that developed around these delicious libations.

From the Flapper to the “little black dress” to the spangled pantsuit of the disco era, Cocktail Culture will trace the influence of the cocktail hour on fashion and design in the 20th century. The exhibition includes more than 220 objects in all: clothing, textiles, decorative and fine art. Cocktail attire by major designers will be featured, including Chanel, Dior, Oscar, Givenchy, Pucci, Elsa Schiaparelli and more. We’re just as excited the see the sleek Art Deco celluloid barware and 1940s Tiki bar from Japan that will accent this exhibit.

For the serious cocktail enthusiast, Cocktail Culture will give context to the drinks we casually order. Modern ladies can order a Bee’s Knees at their whimsy, but “Urban Nightlife (1920-1930s)” illuminates the experience of sipping one in a Harlem jazz club while wearing a beaded French evening dress, designed to free the body for movement and dance. We’ve all sipped dry martinis in skinny jeans, but “The Rules (1950s)” allows us to imagine sampling one while sporting the newest post-war trend combining the elegance of evening wear with the informality of the day dress, the cocktail dress.

It is well worth a day trip to Rhode Island for a look. After all, without cocktails, there would be no cocktail dress. Sip on one of these as you plan your trip.

NEW FASHION
Created by Victor Broggi
1 small dash Angostura bitters
1/6 Grand Marnier
1/6 pale brandy
2/3 brown (Amontillado or Oloroso) sherry

Stir with ice and strain into a chilled vintage cocktail glass. Garnish with a small piece of pineapple.

[Cocktail Culture at Museum of Art at Rhode Island School of Design. Opens Fri 4.15.11. 224 Benefit St., Providence, RI. 401.454.6500. Until 7.31.11. risdmuseum.org]

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by Pink Lady

Who doesn’t love a good head-to-head battle, especially when it comes to cocktails? This spring the Woodward at Ames will resurrect Cocktail Wars, one of our favorite industry events, back again after a long, cold winter’s break.

Cocktail Wars is an Iron Chef-style bartending competition that will take place every Sunday from now until May 15. Two of Boston’s best mixologists will go head-to-head to create the best cocktail using a series of secret ingredients (typically a spirit, a fruit, an herb, or a vegetable) in the allotted time. The creations will then be judged by some of Boston’s biggest industry experts (which on one magical upcoming Sunday will include a LUPEC lady).

Thirty-two bartenders from Boston’s different neighborhoods will compete during this seven-week tournament for an amazing grand prize: a weekend in New York including roundtrip airfare, swanky hotel accommodations at one of the Morgan’s Hotel Group properties and some cold, hard cash. The stakes are high for these bar stars. For the rest of us, the event means a killer party featuring snacks, a DJ and inexpensive cocktails with some of our favorite beverage industry folks.

Next up on the docket: Asher Karnes – KO Prime (Beacon Hill)
Domingo Barreras – Market at W Hotel (Theatre District)
Chris Majka – The Citizen (Worchester)
Mark Vandeusen – Tico (Back Bay)

Loryn Taplin – Coppa (South End)
Eric Smith – Mezcal Cantina (Worchester)
Jon Parsons – Sam’s at Louis Boston (Waterfront)
Don Wahl – Deuxave (Back Bay)

And mix up one of these, created by New York’s John Pomeroy when the US Bartender’s Guild of New York went head-to-head with Boston as you wait with baited breath.

LA PAROLA ULTIMA
by John S. Pomeroy, Jr.
Omnibibulous.com

1 oz dry gin
1 oz Galliano L’Autentico
1 oz Maraschino liqueur
1 oz fresh lime juice
Fresh basil

Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a flamed lime disc.

[Cocktail Wars. Sundays at Woodward at Ames. 1 Court St., Boston. 617.979.8200. 5:30pm/21+/free. woodwardatames.com]

CIN-CIN!

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*Recent ruminations from LUPEC, as originally published in The Weekly Dig.

by Barbara West

“Mary S.” of St. Louis, Missouri (c. 1851-1880) was an inventor who led a life of genius and poverty. Lacking finances and confidence, she sold the rights to her mechanical inventions to various male agents, for as little as $5 each. These men received 53 patents and a great deal of wealth. Mary S. herself died impoverished at roughly age thirty.

A businesswoman and former intelligence agent for the Union army during the Civil War, Charlotte Smith was known for empathizing with the struggles of self-supporting women.

The tragic story of Mary S. spurred Smith, an acquaintance, to seek justice and recognition for women inventors. She wrote about Mary S. in The Woman Inventor, a magazine she founded in 1891. She also pushed for the publication of an official List of Women Patentees. Feminists used the list to argue for women’s suffrage. Today, the list remains the major source of information on 19th-century female inventors. These women were patronizingly dubbed “Lady Edisons.”

Thanks to the list, we know that nearly 4,000 women received U.S. patents between 1809 and 1895—more than 5,000 if design patents are counted. One of the era’s most prolific female inventors was Margaret Knight of Boston (1838-1914). She is credited with about 90 inventions and 22 patents, the most famous of which was the first machine to make the square-bottomed paper bags that are still used in grocery stores today.

In the late 1890s, Smith moved to Boston, where she founded a Women’s Rescue League. In 1907, she organized a Woman’s Board of Trade. After spending thousands of dollars on projects to help women become self-supporting, and years of direct charity to homeless and desperate women, Charlotte Smith died alone in Boston in 1917. She was seventy-seven.

Here’s a cocktail with which to toast our industrious forebroads, known as “Lady Edisons,” this Women’s History Month.

EDISONIAN COCKTAIL

2 ounces brandy
1 ounce Campari
1 ounce fresh lemon juice

Shake brandy, Campari and lemon juice with ice. Strain into a cocktail glass.

CIN-CIN!

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*Recent ruminations from LUPEC Boston, as published in The Weekly Dig.

by Pinky Gonzales + Pink Lady

Women’s History Month is upon us! Today we’ll raise a glass to bartending forebroad Ada Coleman, creator of the Hanky Panky, which is also the namesake drink of LUPEC Boston founder, Misty Kalkofen.

Coleman was the first head barman at the famed American Bar in London. As the story goes, “Coley,” a mixologist of reputable character who could trash-talk with the best of them, invented the drink for a colorful bar regular. Coleman spoke of it herself, to a London newspaper in 1925:

“The late Charles Hawtrey … was one of the best judges of cocktails that I knew. Some years ago, when he was over working, he used to come into the bar and say, ‘Coley, I am tired. Give me something with a bit of punch in it.’ It was for him that I spent hours experimenting until I had invented a new cocktail. The next time he came in, I told him I had a new drink for him. He sipped it, and, draining the glass, he said, ‘By Jove! That is the real hanky-panky!’ And Hanky-Panky it has been called ever since.”

Coleman worked at the American Bar at the swank Savoy Hotel from 1903-1926, during the cocktail’s coming-out era in Europe. Owners renamed their establishments “American Bars” as a selling point—a way of distinguishing them from mere pubs or gin & tonic joints. The American craft of mixing up Sazeracs, Martinis, Ramos Gin Fizzes and the like became all the rage. Coleman’s barstools saw the likes of Charlie Chaplin, Marlene Dietrich, WC Fields, Prince of Wales and Mark Twain.

Bartender Harry Craddock filled Ada’s role managing the bar in 1924, after he had left dry America for work abroad. In 1930, he published The Savoy Cocktail Book, an Art Deco gem & many a bartender’s bible. In it, for the first time, is the printed recipe for the Hanky-Panky, below. Mix one up as you toast Coley whose spirit lives on in the likes of modern bartending broad, LUPEC’s own Hanky Panky.

HANKY-PANKY
The original, from the Savoy Cocktail Book

2 Dashes Fernet Branca
1/2 Italian Vermouth
1/2 Dry Gin

Shake well and strain into a cocktail glass. Squeeze orange peel on top.

CIN-CIN!
FOR MORE GREAT STORIES AND LORE, VISIT LUPECBOSTON.COM.

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*Recent ruminations from the ladies of LUPEC as originally published in the Weekly Dig.

by Pink Lady

Politics and cocktails? Yes, please. With President’s Day on the horizon we thought it only fitting to highlight some of the drinking habits of our nation’s leaders, culled from the fascinating book of Presidential fare and trivia Politics and Pot Roast by Sarah Hood Solomon.

George Washington totally made whiskey at Mount Vernon. He was the first and only founding father to own and operate a commercial distillery. It enjoyed two good years of robust rye whiskey production before Washington’s death in 1799.

Though 11th President, James Polk occasionally partook in a Raspberry Shrub, he and his wife Sarah took their roles in the White House solemnly…I mean, seriously. Food & drink were not served at most receptions and dancing was forbidden.

Andrew Jackson’s administration was a different story. The simple ceremony planned to celebrate his inauguration went horribly awry when 20,000 people invaded the White House mansion. The celebrants caused an epic ruckus breaking windows, china,and furniture and causing several fires. The place was so packed that people who came in the door had to crawl out the windows. Clever cooks eventually lured revelers out of the Presidential mansion by putting out tubs of whiskey on the lawn.

President James Buchanan had a legendary tolerance. He once reprimanded a liquor merchant for sending pint bottles of champagne to fulfill orders of bubbly because they were too small. On his way to church, Buchanan liked to stop at the Jacob Baer distillery to purchase a 10-gallon cask of “Old J.B.” whiskey. He liked that he and the whiskey shared the same initials.

Alice, Theodore Roosevelt’s oldest daughter, was an independent woman after our own hearts: “She smoked on the White House roof, wore pants, and was known to have a cocktail.” (Cheers, Alice!)

While Governer of NY, FDR never let a guest’s glass go empty, often pressing his company to have a second and third drink, asking “How about another little sippy?” as he poured his favorite ‘Haitian Libation’ (made with orange juice, rum, and grenadine.) Over-served guests used houseplants to discard the contents of the glass.

President and First Lady Truman were fond of Old Fashioneds, but butler never seemed to make them correctly. He finally got it right when he tried this recipe: pour bourbon over ice; serve. Truman was prescribed 2 shots of bourbon a day by his doctor, which he took each morning with a glass of orange juice.

As you raise a glass of this favorite of George Washington, we offer you this advice, from the sage “Etiquette Rules for State Dinners” in The White House Cook Book, circe 1887:

“Don’t, when you drink, elevate your glass as if you were going to stand it inverted on your nose…Drink gently, and not pour it down your throat like water turned out of a pitcher.”

MOUNT VERNON’S MINT JULEPS
Recipe from the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association
Handful of fresh mint
1 to 4 tablespoons sugar
1/8 to 1/2 cup water
Crushed ice (about 1 cup)
1/2 to 1 cup bourbon
Powdered sugar

Reserve one mint sprig for garnish. Put remaining mint in the bottom of a (tall) glass, and crush with a mortar. Put in simple syrup (made from the sugar and water). Fill with crushed ice. Pour bourbon on top. Dip mint sprig in powdered sugar as garnish. Quantities of the ingredients may be adjusted for individual tastes.

FOR MORE GREAT RECIPES, VISIT LUPECBOSTON.COM.

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Recent ruminations from LUPEC Boston, as originally published in the Dig.

by Pink Lady

Scotch. Chocolate. Both delight on their own, but can make for an even more exciting evening when paired. This week, you can learn more about both from Glenlivet’s own kilted brand ambassador, Sir Jeremy Bell, while raising money to fight Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

This Thursday, the ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) Association will host the Inaugural Scotch and Chocolate Event at The Commandant’s House in Charlestown, MA. Dressed in full highland kilt with bagpipes blaring, Sir Jeremy Bell will enlighten guests about the fascinating facts of Scotch, port and Champagne.  He’ll offer advice on winning combinations of chocolate and fruit for each spirit and wine, and will also teach guests how to saber a bottle of Champagne. For those who successfully chop the top off a bottle of bubbly with a Napoleonic saber, induction into the Confrerie du Sabre Dor (the brotherhood of the golden saber) awaits.
Cigar Masters will have an expert on-site to hand-roll cigars, adding to the old rich guy charm of the evening. The event will also feature hors d’oeuvres, a chocolate fountain with exotic fruits, piano playing, and live and silent auctions that include a shirt signed by Josh Beckett, a one-week Cape house rental in July, spa packages and a Scotch and cigar tasting for four at Cigar Masters.

This luxurious shindig is designed to benefit The ALS Association Massachusetts Chapter, the only ALS-related organization in Massachusetts fighting ALS (more commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease) on all fronts. Tickets cost $100 and are available online at http://web.alsa.org/ScotchAndChocolate, or by phone at 1-888-CURE-ALS.

Now what to wear while sabering a bottle of Champagne? Hmmm…mix up one of these as you ponder.

Speak Easy

Recipe by Oscar Quagliarini, Italy

Ice an old fashioned glass with cracked ice and Pernod, then pour it out.

In a mixing glass put:

1 sugar cube

3 drops The Bitter Truth Aromatic Bitters

3 drops Chocolate Bitters

Crush the sugar cube.

Add to mixing glass:

Ice cubes

2.25 Glenlivet Single Malt Scotch (10 year old)

1 barspoon Galliano L’autentico

Stir & strain into the Pernod-rinsed Old Fashioned glass.

Flamed orange zest for garnish.

Cin-cin!


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Ruminations from the ladies of LUPEC, as originally published in The Weekly Dig.

by Pink Lady

As I type, freezing rain falls on ice outside my window. My entire street resembles a large, grey ice skating rink. Welcome to January in New England. Ever tried navigating a grey skating rink in platform heels and a pencil skirt? It ain’t fun. On nights like these, this LUPEC lady prefers to drink at home.

What’s a girl to do when marooned at home and craving a cocktail? Work with what you’ve got. When there’s no citrus to be found and a trip to the store is out of the question, straight spirits are the way to go. A Manhattan is an obvious choice, but what about a Hearst? Made with 2 parts gin, one part sweet vermouth, a dash of orange bitters and some lemon oil (if you’ve got it), this drink is an easy answer to the can’t-leave-the-house blues. Allegedly, the drink was famously enjoyed at the Waldorf-Astoria by newspapermen who worked for William Randolph Hearst.

If Campari is your bag and you’re looking to move beyond the Negroni, a Rosita (recipe below) is a nice way to go, a favorite of LUPEC member emeritus Contessa. We don’t know the origins of this drink at all but it sure does make for a refreshing aperitif to whet your appetite for the take out you’ve ordered because you can’t bear to leave the house.

And if you’re feeling like getting creative, you can always follow this basic, time-tested formula for an aperitif cocktail and see where it gets you, plugging in whatever ingredients you have at home. Start with 2 parts high-proof base spirit, 1 part low-proof aperitif (vermouth, Lillet, etc.) or fortified wine (dry sherry, port, etc.), maybe a 1 bar spoon of liqueur if you’ve got it and are feeling feisty, and 2 dashes whatever bitters strikes your fancy. Stir your new concoction with ice and taste, then modify to your heart’s delight.

And let us know what you’ve come up with! We’ve got at least 2 more months of this lovely winter weather to contend with.

ROSITA

1 1/2 oz silver tequila
1/2 oz Campari
1/2 oz sweet vermouth
1/2 oz dry vermouth
1 dash angostura bitters

Stir with ice, strain into an ice-filled Old Fashioned glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.

Cin-cin!

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*Recent ruminations from LUPEC Boston, a portion of which originally appeared in the Weekly Dig.

As the snow dumps and the holiday bills roll in many of us are choosing to imbibe at home, both to save money and stay warm. Such was the case last week for this LUPEC lady: my roommate whipped up a batch of jambalaya in the slow cooker and invited Alexander to come by for dinner. Alexander invited a friend who invited a friend and I invited a friend who did the same. Before we knew it, our snuggly winter dinner plans morphed into an impromptu dinner party. With all these guests on their way and only ten minutes to prep, what were we to do? Make punch!

Our group was a blend of bourbon drinkers and folks who “only drink vodka” so I turned to a bottle of Nolet’s Finest as a base, an elegant gin that uses Turkish rose petals and raspberries as main botanicals. With subdued juniper notes, Nolet’s ia a nice gateway choice for gin-phobes. I had white tea kicking about in the cabinet, lemons on the counter, a bottle of Combier and a little Orchard Apricot Liqueur on the bar. Old school recipes for punch (like, circa the 18th century) call for tea, sugar, water, spirits, citrus, and little spice. With all of these items at my fingertips, punch became possible.

When our guests arrived they were thrilled to find me batching up a bowl of punch just for them. It’s as simple as pie (easier even – have you ever tried to make pie dough?) but packs impressive, well, punch. Our guests christened it the Short Con – the Long Con has yet to be invented, but will probably use something brown as a base.

To similarly delight your guests, follow these simple steps:

Step #1: Steep tea. How much will depend on how much punch you are making; for the Short Con Punch I steeped 2 white tea bags in 1 cup of water for five minutes.

Step #2: Peel whatever citrus you choose and muddle it with sugar. Again, this should scale; for the Short Con Punch, muddle peels of 4 lemons and a lime in about a cup of sugar. Muddle until the citrus oils have been absorbed by the sugar.

Step #3: Add tea to the sugary citrus peel mix and stir until sugar is dissolved.

Step #4: Add base spirit, modifying liqueurs, and fresh squeezed citrus juice of choice in a ratio of 2:1:1. For the Short Con we started with 2 cups of gin, a little over ¼ cup of Combier, a little under ¼ cup of Orchard Apricot Liqueur and juice of 4-5 lemons. Taste as you go and modify as needed.

Step #5: Add a little water and ice.

Et voila! If serving immediately, ladle punch over ice filled cups. If you have time, allow the punch to chill for a bit (literally) before serving.

Your guests will be so impressed. But do prepare yourself for texts that blame you for their hangover the morning after.

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