By Robert Plotkin
In a country that loves throaty V-8 engines, spicy barbeque and bone-crunching sports, how did a spirit as delicate and nuanced as vodka so thoroughly dominate the limelight? For most consumers, the draw of vodka is its purity, for others it’s the spirit’s enormous diversity. While some vodkas are gloriously neutral, others are profoundly personable and laced with flavor.
Back2Basics: Add Some Sparkle
By Sandy Block
Nothing gets the vibe at a bar upbeat more quickly than the sound of a cork popping. Champagne may be in a class by itself, but it’s also become quite expensive. The good news is that there’s a whole world of other stylish sparklers produced elsewhere. In fact, you’ll find the same diversity in this category as exists among wines without effervescence.
2 1/2 parts RumChata
1/4 part Van Gogh Double Espresso vodka
1/3 part 99 Bananas Liqueur
1/2 part Chocolate Cake vodka
Shake with ice and pour into Martini glass. Garnish with a banana slice.
The mixologists at RumChata submitted this recipe.
The Ginger Julep
1 ½ oz. Bullitt Bourbon
½ oz. Drambuie
½ oz. Simple syrup
¼ oz. Ginger beer
¼ oz. Soda water
2 pieces fresh ginger
2 Mint leaves
4 Lime wedges
In a tin gently muddle ginger, lime and mint. Add all other ingredients. Strain and pour in rocks glass, top with ginger beer and soda water.
The mixologists at Steak 954 in Fort Lauderdale, FL, developed this recipe.
Grape Expectations: How Airlines Pick High-flying Wines
Waking Up T.G.I. Friday’s
Burnett’s vodka recently announced the addition of two new flavors: cherry cola and strawberry banana. At 70 proof, they join the line’s other 29 flavors, and are available for a suggested retail price of $10.99 for a 750-ml. bottle.
Admiral Nelson’s Spiced Rum
Admiral Nelson’s spiced rum has changed its packaging. The new bottle has a bulbed neck design atop a tapered body, with blown-in stars around the shoulder reminiscent of a compass rose. The front label features an enhanced version of the namesake naval officer. The changes will be featured across the Admiral Nelson’s franchise.
Hopefully by now you have remembered that Sunday is Mother’s Day. Whatever you have planned or maybe not yet planned, perhaps Cheers can help with a few cocktail suggestions.
Greetings From Pork Avenue
Puerto Ricans love their pork, so much so that the island has a stretch of highway in Guavate nicknamed Pork Avenue because it’s lined with lechoneras–cafeteria-style outdoor restaurants that specialize in whole roasted pigs. I got to experience a lechonera last week when we were heading back to San Juan after a tour of Destileria Serralles in Ponce.
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