Posts Tagged ‘cocktails’

The bebe had suspected chicken pox over the weekend so the Rocket Scientist and I couldn’t enjoy the glorious weather as much as we would have liked. By 4pm on Sunday – damned pox or no – we were bouncing off the walls and had to get outside.

We decided to walk to the river and ended up meandering past Caramello for ice cream and then a gem of a vintage furniture store, Fork + Pencil on Court and Warren in Cobble Hill.

We’re still looking for a great bar cart. These are having a bit of a renaissance since MadMan (the Fork + Pencil owner said that they are more in demand than anything else he sells) but I also think they make for a brilliant storage solution for urban apartment living. They’re compact and usually contain lots of clever drawers and secret places to stash bottles, glasses, table linen and cutlery.

It would be nice to have somewhere to store (and display) lovely glasses, without the risk of them being shoved in an over-crammed cupboard and breaking. In fact, we could treat ourselves to something other than Ikea glassware. Wouldn’t that be grown up?

Even Crate & Barrel are selling them. We were tempted by this one but RS didn’t think they were that well made and at, $999.00, it’s absurdly expensive. I could buy something vintage and Danish for that.

Love this one from London on eBay. There’s something so clever about them – like those old-school travel wardrobes that the rich would take on cruises.

Fork + Pencil had some lovely ones from the Forties. But that is all I’m saying about that because we don’t need any more competition in the bar cart/credenza/dresser-buying arena, thanks.

Chin chin!

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The Vesper

One of the enviably cool traits of the native New Yorker is ordering a signature cocktail with added nuances. My friend Katie, for example, swings her long legs onto a bar stool and says to the barman, “a Perfect Manhattan with rye”. I’d like it if she followed the order with “and make it snappy”, but she is not that rude.

My weekend nights are currently filled with the never-ending quest to find my perfect Manhattan drink (a noble task), although despite my best efforts I’m still at the stage of spending ten minutes furrowing my brow at the cocktail menu in the dimmed venue light, trying not to resort to a panicked order of vodka and tonic.

Most bars only put their signature or seasonal cocktails on the menu but the bartenders will have an encyclopedic knowledge of classic concoctions up their rolled-up sleeves. There’s something incredibly natty about ordering off-piste and the bartender giving you a small but knowing nod, as he turns around to start creating his magic.

Some of my favourite bars I’ve found on my, er, journey have been:

  • The Pegu Club — many good ones here – especially the French Pearl with mint, lime, gin and pernod
  • Weather Up (Tribeca) — El Diablo with tequila, ginger syrup, lime, creme de cassis and soda
  • Weather Up (Prospect Heights) — Brooklynite with rum, honey, lime (again!) and Angostura Bitters

I do have a particular taste for the Vesper, however, after Mike Enright at the Zeta Bar in Sydney made me my first one about five years ago.

A Vesper is a gin and vodka martini, which is made with Lillet – a citrusy French aperitif wine from France – instead of Vermouth. It was created by an author, rather than a bartender – Ian Flemming for the James Bond book Casino Royale (note, I have no aspirations to be a Bond girl) in the sixties.

While my quest continues a Vesper is not a bad fall-back at all.

Here’s a video I found on How to Make a Vesper (this, kids, is definitely one you should try at home):

Oh, okaaaey, you just want to see it, don’t you….

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