Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘mint’

*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.

Read Full Post »

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

by Pink Lady

In just 13 days the ladies of LUPEC Boston will descend upon the New Orleans along with roughly 10,000 other mixologists, brand ambassadors, cocktail writers, and die-hard cocktail enthusiasts. Its one of our favorite weeks of the year – and one of out drunkest – and we’ve already begun prepping our livers. We hope you’ll indulge us as we get into the spirit and raise a glass to one of New Orleans’, greatest bartending broads, the late Flo Woodard.

Woodard, also known as “Ms. Flo”, became a bartender at the Court of Two Sisters in the early 1970s and held court behind the stick there for over 30 years. At the time, the company was looking for “someone with integrity and longevity, someone that could make the customers want to always visit our business again for our total experience,” Flo told the New Orleans Time-Picayune in 2009. This former hostess was a perfect fit. Female bartenders were virtually unheard of in the Crescent City in those days and The Court of Two Sisters were ahead of the times.

Woodard was a self-taught bartender who learned her craft from the pages of bar books, but the special brand of hospitality she practiced was innate. Flo was revered by customers for more than what she put in their glass. Her affable personality and zest for sharing stories brought scores of loyal bar patrons, including celebrity fans, from Cesar Romero to Tyler Perry to the entire cast of “The Young and the Restless” (a favorite show of Ms. Flo’s) to John Wayne’s son, Patrick.

Ms. Flo’s talent for engaging guests was also her passion: “Bartending has allowed me the opportunity to talk to people from all over the world. Many of them have shared much of their lives and secrets with me. When they call me Mama or Auntie, I know that I am the lucky one. I get to share my work time with people that I love. That is very big. They are very special to me. I have been blessed. That little girl from Mississippi found the rest of her family,” said Flo in her 2009 interview with the New Orleans Time-Picayune.

Flo was a star mixologist in her own right, who believed a good drink depends on to top of the line liquor, the right mix of ingredients, a fresh twist, and perfect glassware. In 2007 her Crescent City Cooler placed Second in the Tales of the Cocktail annual drink competition. Her famous Hurricane recipe was also reknown.

Flo passed away on March 16, 2010, but her legend endures. In Ms. Flo’s words: “A good bartender must have the personality of an ambassador, the attitude of a leader and the ability to be a great listener. That is the winning combination. And, of course, you must love people and talking to them.”

Let’s raise one of these to Ms. Flo and those who tend bar in her tradition by lifting our spirits with a good drink.

Crescent City Cooler
By Flo Woodard

10 Cleaned mint leaves

1 Dash simple syrup

2 Dashes of Angostura bitters

2 Dashes of Peychaud’s bitters

Juice of 2 lime wedges

2 ounces Bacardi Light rum

2 ounces Ginger Ale

3/4 ounce Cranberry juice

Lime wheel

Place mint leaves into a frosted Collins glass. Add the simple syrup and both bitters and muddle for 10 seconds. Add the juice from 2 lime wedges, Bacardi Light and ginger ale. Fill the Collins glass with ice and stir with a bar spoon. Top with cranberry juice. Serve with a straw.

Garnish: Garnish with a lime wheel and mint sprig.

Cin-cin!

TALES OF THE COCKTAIL IS JULY 21st-25th IN NEW ORLEANS. FOR MORE INFORMATION, VISIT TALESOFTHECOCKTAIL.COM.

Read Full Post »

*Recent ruminations from LUPEC Boston, originally published in this week’s Dig. Please note: the Dig’s edition was edited by FakeAPStylebook to promote ROFLCon, a festival celebrating all things Internet…this one is not :)

by Pink Lady

Thousands will descend on Churchill Downs this weekend for the 136th Kentucky Derby. If there was ever a time to don a big hat and languidly sip a cocktail while pretending to be Southern, it’s this Saturday, in anticipation of “The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports.” And your drink should be a mint julep.

The mint julep’s now a staple of Derby Day drinking, but from the turn of the 19th century through the Civil War, it was a staple of everyday drinking. The beverage has agrarian roots, but it fit in at fancy city bars in the early 20th century.

The mint julep was originally built with brandy, but during its heyday, you’d find everything from the gin julep described in Jerry Thomas’ books (made with “Hollands,” or Genever), to the “prescription” Julep, which blends cognac and rye. It’s replete with idiosyncratic nuance, so the nuts and bolts of construction remain a point of regional and bartenderly pride.

“Julep” originally meant “medicinal,” but “after centuries of usage as a term connoting medicine,” writes David Wondrich in Imbibe!, “somehow, in America ‘julep’ morphed into a word for something you drank for fun.” Mint juleps on Derby Day are fun indeed. According to the Kentucky Derby website, almost 120,000 fuel the weekend, requiring “1,000 pounds of freshly harvested mint and 60,000 pounds of ice.”

To represent Derby Nation, check out Drink’s “Run for the Roses Party” this Saturday. Enjoy three special cocktails and Southern treats, while listening to a live broadcast of the race. They’re awarding prizes for best hat and encourage derby-appropriate attire.

[Drink, 348 Congress St., Boston. 617.695.1806. 3pm-6pm/$45. drinkfortpoint.com]

CLASSIC MINT JULEP

2 sprigs of mint
1 oz simple syrup
2 oz Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
crushed ice

Pour simple syrup into a glass. Gently muddle one sprig of mint into the syrup, then remove mint.

Fill glass with crushed ice. Add bourbon. Top with more crushed ice, stir.

Cheers! [Italicized when referring to the popular 1980s television program.—Ed.]

CHECK OUT PINK LADY’S VIDEO ON HOW TO MAKE A CLASSIC MINT JULEP AT HOME ON HOW2HEROES. how2heroes.com/videos/beverages/mint-julep

Read Full Post »

*LUPEC Boston’s latest ruminations, in case you missed ‘em in this week’s issue of the Dig.

By Pink Lady and Hanky Panky

As we discussed last week, our recent involvement in the Boston Center for Adult Education’s “From Jackie to Michelle – Celebrating the First Ladies of Fashion” fundraiser prompted us to ask ourselves “What Would Jackie/Michelle Drink?” Jackie Kennedy’s love for Daiquiris in Camelot is well documented. But what does Michelle Obama drink? Our inquiries to White House Social Secretary Desirée Rogers’ office went un-answered, so we improvised at the event, serving the Southside Cocktail to represent Ms. Obama, who grew up and raised her family in the Chicago neighborhood that bears the name.

We linked the drink to Chi-town for our event, but the Southside was well known as the house cocktail at the 21 Club in New York.  Owners Jack Kriendler and Charles E. Berns got into the Speakeasy business to help pay for night -school during Prohibition. They owned various joints around Manhattan, but once their operations moved uptown, they attracted ritzier clientele, including many Yale graduates and some classy broads, like Dorothy Parker and Edna Ferber.

The 21 Club’s secret Wine Cellar was once an elaborate system for hiding Prohibition-era hooch and was built to be virtually invisible. The entrance was shielded from fuzz’s watchful eyes by several smoked hams hanging from the ceiling and a shelf full of canned goods. The 2.5-ton door was built to look like part of the cement wall, and entry required sliding a slender 18″ meat skewer through one of the wall’s many cracks. Nowadays, the secret room is one of the most coveted private dining venues in the city.

There are lots of great tales about the 21 Club. One finds Clare Booth Luce stepping aside to allow Dorothy Parker entrance to the Club muttering, “Age before beauty,” to which Parker replied “Pearls before swine.” In another, Robert Benchley shrugs off his raincoat saying, “Get me out of this wet coat and into a dry Martini.”

Who created the cocktail?  Who knows.  But Dale DeGroff proudly and rightfully places it in the world of sours, which by definition are sweet, sour and strong: a simple combination that can be absolutely terrible if it is out of balance.

Boston Fashion Week starts in a few short days. Celebrate with one of these – we’re not sure if Michelle Obama has ever had one, but we’re sure she’d enjoy this decidedly fashionable beverage.

SOUTHSIDE COCKTAIL

1 oz fresh lemon juice
1 tsp sugar
2 mint sprigs, muddle with lemon & sugar
1 1/2 oz gin

Muddle lemon, mint, and sugar in bottom of mixing glass. Add gin & ice and shake. Strain into chilled cocktail glass.

CIN-CIN!

FOR MORE GREAT COCKTAIL RECIPES, VISIT LUPECBOSTON.COM.


Read Full Post »

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 3,316 other followers