Last week I brought Cocktail of the Week to an end. If you want to browse through all of the cocktails I made over the last two years the full list is here. I also hinted in that last post about a new project I was looking forward to kicking off. Well, may I Welcome you to my new project: The Best Cheeseburger in Davis, California! I’m going to eat and rank every cheeseburger in town (and try not to gain 60 pounds.)
I’m not a food critic. I’ve never been trained as a cook. I have learned, am learning, how to cook and it is an activity I enjoy. I enjoy sharing food with friends and I’d fallen in love with this “tiny” town in Northern California. This seems like a good fit for the me and the blog, it’s a natural extension of previous projects and my own interests. Continue reading “Best Cheeseburger in Davis: The Project”
The Last Word was a fitting cocktail to end this project on. I’ve been making a new cocktail nearly every week for the last two-and-a-half years. The first entry in this series went live on July 31, 2013. I made a Moscow Mule, at the time my favorite cocktail and still one of my favorites. That post contains a picture of my original “bar” which now looks terribly understocked.
Since then I’ve bought dozens of bottles of liquor, various glasses, shakes, ice bags, other bar accessories, and learned how to make over 80 different cocktails! I’ve come to appreciate the work bartenders and mixologists do behind the bars when they’re making drinks. I’ve gained first-hand experience trying to make my own cocktails and tasted the various subtleties involved with combining liquors, mixers, juice, syrups, bitters, etc., etc!
I suppose I could have kept the cocktail entries going on indefinitely. There appear to be an infinite number of recipes. But, I’ve covered most of the basics and was already running into the problem of having to purchase uncommon liquors and alcohols in order to continue the project. I didn’t really want to spend the money and I’m running out of room on my own bar!
I’ve got an idea for a new project for the blog. I’ve got some more research to do before I unveil it though. I can tell you that it’s going to be food related and will be centered around Davis, CA.
I’ve still got Star Oops to go through as well as various Let’s Plays that are in progress, please look forward to more of those! If I’m especially diligent I might have one or two more to add to that.
The Last Word, according to Ted Saucier, was created in the early 20th century in Detroit. The first mention of it is being served at the Detroit Athletic Club (where it is still served by the way!) the drink made its way to New York thanks to a vaudeville actor and remained popular until World War 2. After the war though the drink fell off the map, forgotten until “rediscovered” in the early 2000s by a bartender at the Zig Zag Cafe in Seattle. From there it spread across the country and inspired other cocktails, the most famous being the “Final Ward” which swaps out the gin for rye whiskey and the limes for lemons.
One part gin
One part lime juice
One part green Chartreuse
One part maraschino liquor
Fill shaker with ice. Add all ingredients. Shake well. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
The Last Word is an interesting cocktail, equal parts of three liquors and lime juice. One is herbal, one is sweet, one is sour, and one is pungent. Looking at the recipe you wouldn’t think it would work. It SHOULDN’T work. This cocktail is a mess. Yet, it does. It’s a perfectly balanced drink. Sharp and contrasting flavors combine into a lovely drink that goes down smooth and is easy on the eyes. Cheers!
I’ve had the Boulevardier on the list of cocktails to make for some time. It just kept getting kicked back another week as other cocktails came up that seemed more interesting. And then it got kicked back because I had that string of Campari based cocktails all in a row and I didn’t feel comfortable doing yet another.
So what is a Boulevardier? It’s the Fall/Winter cousin of the Negroni. Subbing out gin for bourbon or rye whisky. This single substitution though changes the entire drink. Whisky smooths out and mellows the edges of a drink that is already made sharp by Campari. Something that the Negroni really did need…
1 oz. Campari
1 oz. sweet vermouth
1 1/2 oz. rye whisky
Add all ingredients to ice filled rocks glass. Stir to combine. Garnish with a orange twist.
Though as with the Negroni, you don’t want to hurry this cocktail. Take your time. Enjoy the interplay of rye and sweet vermouth. Embrace the medicinal brace of Campari as it splashes against the back of your throat.
The winter is long and cold and this drink can only keep you warm for so long. Embrace and enjoy it while it lasts.