Friday, December 17, 2010


I haven't always known what to make of beer cocktails but, recently, have found a couple to my liking, including the Carte Blanche here.

Thursday, November 04, 2010


As promised, more punch news. There are actually three pieces here, but I link to the interview.

Friday, October 22, 2010


I think those who manage to blog and write books (and freelance) must be superhuman. I can only manage one at a time and this is my excuse for falling down on other fronts. Not that this means I'll start regular blogging at this point. Once you lose steam for that, it's hard to get back. We'll see.

When George Washington bade farewell to his officers, he did so in New York's Fraunces Tavern. When Andrew Jackson planned his defense of New Orleans against the British in 1815, he met Jean Lafitte in a grog shop. And when John Wilkes Booth plotted with his accomplices to carry out a certain assassination, they gathered in Surratt Tavern.
In America Walks into a Bar , Christine Sismondo recounts the rich and fascinating history of an institution often reviled, yet always central to American life. She traces the tavern from England to New England, showing how even the Puritans valued "a good Beere." With fast-paced narration and lively characters, she carries the story through the twentieth century and beyond, from repeated struggles over licensing and Sunday liquor sales, from the Whiskey Rebellion to the temperance movement, from attempts to ban "treating" to Prohibition and repeal. As the cockpit of organized crime, politics, and everyday social life, the bar has remained vital--and controversial--down to the present. In 2006, when the Hurricane Katrina Emergency Tax Relief Act was passed, a rider excluded bars from applying for aid or tax breaks on the grounds that they contributed nothing to the community. Sismondo proves otherwise: the bar has contributed everything to the American story.
In this heady cocktail of agile prose and telling anecdotes, Sismondo offers a resounding toast to taprooms, taverns, saloons, speakeasies, and the local hangout where everybody knows your name.


(Or shame, as the t-shirt says.)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Hope you're all reading GFR regularly. If not, you can start with this.

Saturday, June 19, 2010


Cynthia David and I spent some time speaking about cocktails for this article. I think she prefers wine but I think we can convert her.

Sunday, June 06, 2010


The National Post has a nice section on drinks this weekend. Adam McDowell names about a half-dozen summer cocktails, a couple of which we were planning on using and a few new ones I'm dying to try. And there's a new Shelf Life, in which we discuss tonic water and rate a few different brands.

Cheers!

Sunday, May 30, 2010


I haven't mentioned Pamela Redmond Satran enough in my blogging - a cocktail enthusiast who got in touch with me in the winter about cocktails which actually make people look younger. Satran is the author of several wildly successful books, including, How Not to Act Old and, more importantly, a big fan of the Northern Bramble - a drink I tweaked (the original is obviously Dick Bradsell's). And here she is, over at the Drinking Diaries, one of the finest drinks blogs around, talking about the Northern Bramble (among other things).

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


There's an inverse correlation between how well you score on this and your IQ.

Thursday, February 25, 2010


I highly recommend getting the print copy of this, where it's clear that at least half the cocktails (especially the Northern Bramble) come from me!

Sunday, January 10, 2010


From the same Rioja trip I was on in September, by a different journalist.

Sunday, January 03, 2010