I love Hollywood glam. However, in a day and age, when all media is splashed with gory details of celebrity love and loss, I hate playing into being a spectator, with a few exceptions. One of those is Oscar night. It is a well orchestrated day of handsomely clad men, gorgeously gowned & jeweled women and don’t forget Oscar. I am also a movie lover and so Oscar night, is actually Oscar day for someone like me. Continue reading
SIT at the BAR
Ever walk into a bar and feel a little intimidated to order a cocktail? Maybe a too cool scene? Or too vast of a selection? Whatever it is, if you have a good host, they will guide you to choose the perfect cocktail.
We arrived on the scene and there must have been some sort of young-hipster-republican (if those exist) conventions going on. They were everywhere. But because of the radical Russell Davis, mixologist, our gang got to SIT at the BAR. Continue reading
This installment of SIT at the BAR was going to be our first video blog. I wasn’t just going to SIT at the BAR, but rather, I was going to hang out at “Tales of the Cocktail” in New Orleans with bartenders from all over the country and talk philosophy and passion, and make it all into a slick video, with the help of my creative partner, Brent Herrmann. However, the day before I left town, I found out that Brent passed away suddenly the night Continue reading
I love to have the last word… but made by a bartender, or a mixologist?
I had the pleasure of spending a recent weekend in Seattle and was given a nice tip by my friend, bartender extraordinaire Russell Davis. He saw through Facebook that I was in Seattle and suggested that I hit up a local bar. The post was: Go to a bar called Zag Zag and ask Murray to make you a “Last Word.” Of course, I love a great bartender, so when Russell says go, I go. Continue reading
New York City? Get a rope! For all you Austinites who are getting into what we are calling our year of Mixology, New York is worth a trip for Happy Hour, not that you will find any cheaply priced drinks, but at least to explore the vibe and see what is already in full swing at many establishments there, from the most luxe restaurants to the bars in the Jet Blue/JFK terminal! Continue reading
I was headed to the Four Seasons for our final board meeting for the Hill Country Wine & Food Festival, when I realized that I hadn’t eaten all day and it was 3pm!! Well, I was on South Congress, so I popped into my favorite place in the neighborhood: South Congress Café. Even though it was 3pm and I knew I wasn’t going to drink, I decided to SIT at the BAR anyway. I was greeted by adorable Kelly and, upon asking her about the burger, she advised me that it was “one of the best burgers in town”. So I gave it a shot and, boy was it yummy. Thick and juicy and full of flavor-on a sweet & buttery, potato roll!! Between big bites, I peppered Kelly with questions about the new spirit Veev, which I noticed sitting behind the bar amongst a bunch of half drunk drinks. She happened to be experimenting with Veev cocktails just as I walked in…how serendipitous! So, if you were wondering, Veev is an Acai spirit that has hint of the fruit (kind of a blueberry flavor)
and mixes well with juices and herbs. At South Congress Café, they were “getting it” and were making drinks that complimented the spirit well. I saw a julep and the drink that I got to taste was the “Joie de Veev”. This was designed by Jesse, the bar manager. A refreshing drink, the JdV is a ginger, limey, Veev cocktail…I thought it could have used a bit more ginger, but I am sure they will perfect the recipe as they hone it…I mean, it’s not even on the menu yet! But, as soon as it is I will go back an order another on a really hot spring day. Oh, and the other really cool thing that happened…when I asked for my check, I was informed that when you SIT at the BAR from Sunday evening thru Tuesday, you get 20% off on food. What a deal! Looks like I’m onto something with this whole “SIT at the BAR” thing.
The setting: A long white high top table; 17 people, from industry folks to “at-home/amateur” bartenders; a slight murmur from the dining room, and the quiet hustle of a well oiled restaurant staff. This was the scene at FINO on Wednesday night for the St. Germain Dinner. I didn’t get to SIT at the BAR, so the bartender came to us! Continue reading
St. Germain is my favorite liqueur…” I am hearing this out and about town. It’s the new hot thing; however it’s not so new. I first heard about the liqueur about a year and a half ago from David Allen, the “Tipsy Texan,” who is incidentally teaching the mixology class “Tipsy Tech” in which I am currently enrolled.
You may or may not know that I have featured St. Germain in several KXAN spots over the last few months with Cava and in a Greentini with Sake. Well, once more I have a terrific drink that I want to share with you all. Continue reading
Okay, so I’m not sitting at a bar but,
I’M REGISTERED! for two mixology classes…one online and another “in Austin” course.
For the online, I am awaiting a February first due date for the Pernod sponsored Bar Smarts Wired program. I hear it’s difficult and I am super excited… This is gonna be great!
And the “in Austin” is going to be a 12 week course offered by the Tipsy Texan, sponsored by Twin Liquors. This will have us focusing on a different spirit each week-going thru the history of the distillation to creation of classic and new cocktails. It will be a fun communal experience to compliment my solo “online” studies. Continue reading
I usually write my blogs first thing in the morning, but after my visit to La Condesa I couldn’t help but rush home and put my thoughts to…um paper…computer!
So, I needed to grab a quick bite before hitting the grocery store for dinner supplies. And, as in typical fashion…I like to make my meals count. Meaning, if it’s not worth putting in my body, then I’d rather starve! So, it was a bit out of the way to drive down to 2nd street, but I wanted to SIT at the BAR at La Condesa. Upon arrival, the bartender was super friendly and we hit it off right away. I asked him about their bloody mary mix…turns out they make it from scratch with lots of different herbs and spices. So, I ordered one up…but let’s use El Jimador tequila instead and make it a Bloody Maria. Yummy! Very nice smokey flavor, with a hint of spice…and oh my, the tequila was terrific! Continue reading
So, I was in the mood for Asian or Fusion or something of the like…Mizu was the perfect candidate…they’ve been open at their new location for about 5 months and have been getting really good reviews. So, I sat at the “bar bar” at first and asked for a drink menu…turns out they were between designing menus and didn’t have one officially. I asked the bartender for something refreshing and light…maybe cucumber. He suggested a Ginger Infused Patron Martini. Holy Wow! What a drink. Pureed fresh ginger infused with Patron silver. And a jalapeño, lime juice. Mix it all together and serve up. The drink is spicy, sweet and smoky. Absolutely fantastic. Continue reading
It’s a new decade…as I look back on last year’s blogs I see a common theme. Cocktails and quality ingredients.
I feel like I’ve been onto something here that I want to explore even more. So, this year I am going to take my New Years resolution to the next level and get certified in mixology. Is that something you can even do? I am going to guess, YES! I am also going to SIT at the BAR! This is my new mantra. Well, it’s not SO new. I’ve always enjoyed sitting at the bar. There is a security for me there. And, it’s not just if I’m alone…in fact, I often sit at the bar with friends. And, it’s not just to talk to people either..even though I do love to do that too. I think it’s because I like to watch! It’s like the TV food network of cocktails. I enjoy watching all the different drinks being shaken up! mixed up! And, sometimes-when they make too much-I can even get a taste of something…yay! Continue reading