70. Barbadoes Punch

70. Barbadoes Punch - Hero

This is one of the many variations on JT’s Brandy Punch (which was delicious). It is notable for being one of the drinks I never thought I would actually make, due to the required additional ingredient — guava jelly. Because who has that? That’s not a thing! Then, one of our friends brought back some guava jam as a gift from a tropical trip so… problem solved! Technically jam not jelly I suppose but close enough.

The only news that I could understand about Barbado[e]s itself was this which does not merit repeating here. So, instead, some regular news. Scientists have found what they think are the oldest micro-fossils yet, dating back to 3.77 billion years ago. They are probably bacteria that lived around hot volcanic vents in the ocean’s floor. Cool!

70. Barbadoes Punch - Ingredients

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Strawberry Basil Margarita

Strawberry Basil Margarita - Hero

One of my new year’s resolutions this year was to have more dinner parties. And so, I have been working on that! To that end, here is a drink we served, taken from a cocktail book I received as a Christmas present.

Since I’m actually writing this article day of, it’s a little easier to find news. Mexico, the home of the margarita, is having some issues with the US. What’s new? Particularly because of the changing opinions (and laws?) on immigration, we’re seeing relations get a little bit frosty. If that’s a word you can use for two countries that border on a desert. Anyways, a meeting earlier today between Mexican officials and our new Secretary of State showed some animosity, but nothing that can’t be handled. Hopefully.

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106. Bottle Cocktail

106. Bottle Cocktail - Hero

So, turns out this is pretty much the same as one of his others, the Brandy Cocktail, just in a bottle. I guess if you made it the actual size he wanted (we cut it down considerably) it’s more useful as a separate recipe, for storing and whatnot. Aged cocktails are certainly a thing now, though I haven’t yet tried the little bit of this we have left, so I don’t know if it improved with age. Either way, I got to use my new bitters!

Not really any keywords to go on for this one. Hm. It’s also really tough for me to not always default to “terrible things that are happening with our government.” So, instead, let’s go for “interesting things that are happening with other governments.” Earlier this week, Kim Jong-Un’s half brother was killed in Malaysia. The mystery surrounding this continues, as a somewhat exciting intrigue/conspiracy plot with North Korea suspected of carrying out the killing. If it weren’t real life, I’d enjoy reading it in a spy novel!

106. Bottle Cocktail - Ingredients

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122. Mulled Wine

122. Mulled Wine - Hero

JERRY WHAT ARE YOU DOING. This mulled wine does not have wine in it! I guess sherry is fortified wine but that’s a whole other kettle of fish. There’s a much more entertaining version of this recipe, 123, which is basically the same thing but an even larger batch and the recipe is written as a song. One day, we will make this. Be excited.

Here’s a piece of news worth mulling over (see what I did there): Cory Booker is now the first senator to testify against another senator in confirmation hearings. He is trying to prevent Jeff Sessions from being approved as Trump’s Attorney General. This probably won’t work, as the Republicans hold a majority (and apparently candidates hardly ever get rejected anyway), but as a show of defiance it probably works out.

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207. Hot Spiced Rum

207. Hot Spiced Rum - Hero

Well, as things are getting deep into fall territory (at least, they are in the parts of the country where I’m not… I live vicariously through you guys), I figured we ought to broach the warming section of Jerry Thomas’s guide. As the first foray into this field was a disaster, I was a little worried, but I was pleasantly surprised!

So, keeping the news light, I actually accidentally searched for “soiced” instead of “spiced,” and found this article from October. I feel like this is a hard-g / soft-g “gif” situation, though. Either way, gotta love the rhymes.

207. Hot Spiced Rum - Ingredients

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The Upside Downer – Halloween

The Upside Downer -

Happy Halloween everyone! I hope you have a lovely day (night?) of scary things (besides Trump), creepy happenings, and general merriment. Oh, and cocktails!

Surrounding this holiday, I saw a lot of different lists of cool black cocktails, so I made my own. Turns out activated charcoal is surprisingly expensive, but I think this came out pretty great, so it was worth it.

Also, if you haven’t seen Stranger Things, the source of this drink’s name, you should do it! Our friends had a Stranger Things themed Halloween party this weekend and it was great.

No news today, because Halloween.

The Upside Downer - Ingredients

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Saloonbox Vermont Old Fashioned – News Flash

SaloonBox Vermont Old Fashioned - Hero

In August, I happened to win a one-month subscription to SaloonBox, which was awesome! I’d been interested in the service before, but wasn’t sure if the price point was justified. (Note: I’m still not quite sure if the price point is justified.) Either way, it was great to be able to try it out.

The service sends you, each month, everything you need to make two servings each of two different cocktails. In September, it was the Vermont Old Fashioned and the Ginger Piña (which I’ll discuss tomorrow).

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The box arrives packed full of an insane amount of padding, and various small-serving containers of whatever you’ll need, including the alcohol (there’s another service I’m intrigued by, Shaker and Spoon, that gives you the mixers/etc. but not the spirits).

The Vermont Old Fashioned was a pretty simple drink, basically an Old Fashioned with maple syrup (yum!) instead of simple syrup. I actually received extra maple syrup accidentally; they had packed two bottles of that and only one of the rye to mix in — it was supposed to be the other way around. Thankfully, their customer service was lightning quick and immediately sent me out another bottle of the rye.

On to the drink!

SaloonBox Vermont Old Fashioned - Ingredients

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184. Knickerbocker

184. Knickerbocker - Hero

Such a great name. I only know it from this, and the TV show “The Knick.” But Wikipedia there was also a Barney song. And some other things. I also like that there’s no “The” in the title. Anyway. On to the news!

It’s obviously tricky to find a news article for this one… So instead, let’s just talk about this. I’d make another joke about needing a drink, but, seriously, guys, let’s just elect the right person president and use all of this as an opportunity to learn how to treat all people (women, African-Americans, immigrants, Latinos, the list goes on and on) with respect and care about them. Ugh.

184. Knickerbocker - Ingredients

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20. Curaçoa Punch

20. Curacoa Punch - Hero

Well, I did a whole bunch of these last weekend, and then, as a side effect, totally forgot to write any posts. Perhaps we should do fewer than five at a time. Hrm.

I was excited about this one! I’ve been digging the use of the curaçao in all of the cocktails recently. Was my excitement justified? Eh, kinda. Though it will certainly be good to move away from this liquor only from a spelling perspective — the fact that he spells it differently confuses my brain every time. Or maybe that’s the alcohol.

As news stories about punching are generally never good, I was happy to come across this one. Though it’s really a stretch. Nicole Scherzinger wanted to punch someone on X Factor because their performance was so good. I guess. Confusingly, the clip on the site doesn’t actually have that part in it. But he did sing very well.

20. Curacoa Punch Ingredients

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