Chances are you live a stone’s throw away from a Thai restaurant in your neighborhood, and you’ve got a go-to local favorite for pad thai. These days I often find myself traveling north of Berkeley, where there’s quite a few wonderful Thai eateries clustered in Albany, El Cerrito and San Pablo locales.
Mary Ladd talks with ‘Top Chef’s’ Casey Thompson about her San Francisco debut in the Warwick Hotel. Aveline and The European promise contrasting light foods and manly drinks. Start planning now for the fall openings.
Many modern day liqueurs, like Campari and Pimm’s, started off as 19th century medicinal tonics made to cure an array of ailments, including malaria. So if you’re sipping a French aperitif or an absinth cocktail this holiday season, chances are you’re also imbibing a bit of malaria history.
In the heart of Sonoma County’s Alexander Valley, nestled between grapevines and the area’s rolling foothills, is the modern yet rustic Medlock Ames Tasting Room and Alexander Valley Bar. The tasting room is the only place in town where you can enjoy all of the lovely wines made by Medlock Ames just up the road at their Bell Mountain ranch. And just as it’s making its last call, the bar next door starts serving up fresh, garden-inspired cocktails using ingredients grown at that very location.
Jonny Raglin is a San Francisco resident, bartender, and founding partner at Comstock Saloon in North Beach. Raglin shares his favorite foods and restaurant spots, and tells what it’s like to have a family with his wife Sara Spearin, who runs a popular food business: Dynamo Donuts.
Did you know that the margarita is the number one cocktail ordered in America? It’s also a distinctly American drink — American meaning it is mostly served in the United States. In Mexico, the Paloma — a combination of grapefruit soda, tequila, salt and lime juice — is the tequila mixed-drink of choice. But in the United States, Margaritas reign supreme and, as you might guess, there’s no day where margaritas are served more in this country than Cinco de Mayo.
But as long as we’re indulging, why not throw in some adult libations as well? Of course there is the standard Peppermint Schnapps for a tried and true candy-cane flavored holiday aperitif, but what about some amaretto, Frangelico or whiskey to liven things up? Or, as Fred McMurray says in the classic Double Indemnity, “I wonder if a little rum would get this back on its feet?”
Left Coast Libations offers a bottoms-up snapshot of a particular moment in West Coast cocktail culture, one in which gin rules, elderflower liqueur flows, and bitters come in as many flavors as Jolly Ranchers.
And then I thought about my cocktail and how it lead me to my current state of mind. A Death in the Afternoon is made of champagne–the drink most closely associated with celebration, and absinthe– the drink of forgetfulness. I thought it an odd combination; a conflict of emotions in a glass. And that damned drink had the opposite effect on me– it lead to the dredging up of painful memories that I certainly didn’t feel like celebrating. It is a drink that caused me to become acutely aware of what was absent from my life.
Award-winning author, Joseph Dabney, has done it again with new book The Food, Folklore, and Art of Lowcountry Cooking. This week, Megan Gordon reviews the book and provides her summery spin on a Southern recipe for Plantation Punch.
The whole notion of kiddie cocktails centers around their ability to allow children to participate somewhat benignly in adult cocktail culture– preparing them in a sense for their futures as alcohol-swigging grown-ups to whom they look up, both physically and morally.
Maybe they’re not so benign, after all.
The idea of the Shirley Temple Black is entirely upside down. It is a drink that allows me to mix and mingle with the wee ‘uns from time to time without having them point at my Manhattan and ask what’s in it. With an innocent-looking, yet boozy Shirley Temple Black, I can gently tone down those shrieks of bouncy castle delight, or steel myself for the twenty-seventh consecutive screening of Thomas the Tank Engine more or less unnoticed.
At the next children’s party I am obliged to attend, when the host or hostess asks me what I’m having, you know my answer’s going to be:
“I’ll have a Shirley Temple, and make it Black.”