Michael Dietsch is a barfly, booze hound, book hoarder, jazz fiend, and technographer. He lives with his wife, kids, and cats in the D.C. suburbs. When he's not out on the town, he's usually at home doing laundry and writing.
Dietsch has written two books: Shrubs: An Old Fashioned Drink for Modern Times, and Whiskey: A Spirited Story with 75 Classic and Original Cocktails.
He'll save your life if you ask nicely enough.
I've been following Serious Eats since Ed bought Sliced and A Hamburger Today from its founders, and I've contributed a lot to this site. As a member of the extended family, so to speak, I love that you're commissioning these essays, Keith. They're fantastic.
I'd fudge (pardon the pun) things just a little, regarding the water. Instead of using 26 ounces of stuff and 6 ounces water, I'd use 27-1/2 ounces stuff, and 4-1/2 ounces water. It'll make the math SO MUCH EASIER for the other ingredients because then you can just multiply everything by 10.
20 ounces Bailey's
2 1/2 ounces vodka
5 ounces chocolate liqueur
4 1/2 ounces water
With lower-proof ingredients such as Bailey's and chocolate liqueur, this should provide enough dilution.
I won't be able to verify via taste-test that this recipe works for you, since I don't tend to drink sweet cocktails, but it should work, and I hope you have enough time to test it yourself, if you're so inclined. Hope that helps!
Bombay is 86 and Sapphire is 94; that's true (and it means I need to edit the post to reflect that point). What I meant, though, was that the Sapphire's botanical recipe downplays the juniper, compared to the white label, which makes Sapphire taste softer, more rounded, and less piney than Bombay white. I apologize for being unclear.
it's possible for us to both be right, yes?
I drink a lot of gin, and I've worked very hard to educate my palate; I know what I like.
Gordon's didn't make the cut. Glad you guys enjoy it, but it's not my thing.
I feel the need to respond, and here's what I want to say: I agree with everything you said. Thanks for commenting.
The nice thing is, we're both right. As I said in the post, the sweet mash was an experiment. Woodford tried it in 2008, so it was old news during your tour. Here's a press release that explains it:
As far as I know, this was a one-time release, so it's true that both a) they've experimented with it once in the past and b) they now make only sour mash.
@Charles Richter: Fair point on the Benedictine, thanks.
For decades, a company called Heublein marketed a line of bottled cocktails, the Manhattan among them. I have a link here to an old ad for the line.
Today, Heublein, or what's left of it, is part of Diageo, and the bottled-cocktail line is defunct.
I'll redo the list:
I did something crazy and delicious when I cooked this steak.
Saturday night, Father's Day Eve, I made griddled cheeseburgers, in butter. The burgers lost a lot of fat in the cooking process, so after the pan cooled down, I poured the mix of fat and butter into a container and stored it in the fridge.
It was that beefy, buttery goodness that I used to baste my Father's Day steak. Yes, that does mean we had more beef this weekend than is healthy, and yes, it also means that I cooked my own steak on Father's Day, but hey. I love cooking steaks.
Yes, I talked to Kim Tait on the phone for 90 minutes, actually! I couldn't include everything she told me, but I felt it was necessary to cover Tait Farms in the book.
Good question; we haven't talked about that yet.
There's still a lot you can do in fall and winter: apple, kiwifruit, citrus, and pomegranate, among others. Though as long as you're buying the book, I'll be equally happy if you buy it in October or April!
I've already talked a little about that:
When Ann and I developed the book, we had in mind a summer 2014 release, to hit at the peak of the farmers' market's bounty. The book was going to be a squarish format, softcover, organized by season, and aimed at crunchy-granola Greenmarket fans (like me). Then Countryman/Norton's sales team went into action and decided the book had potential to be an end-of-year shopping-season success, aimed at a broader market. So now we're launching in October, and we're no longer going for a seasonal approach.
Scrivener is an interesting piece of software. It's more of a manuscript-management system than it is a word-processing program. The metaphor it uses is that of a corkboard. You pin index cards to the board, and you can use those cards for anything--in my case, I used them primarily for recipes. I also divided each narrative (non-recipe) chapter up into sections, and each section was an index card.
You can rearrange the order of the cards by simply dragging and dropping their icons. This made it very easy to reorder the recipes once we changed the structure of the book. I don't think Word offers functionality like that.
So essentially, every part of the manuscript was a separate file within Scrivener. When I was ready to submit the manuscript to my editor, I compiled the Scrivener files into one large file, using a Compile tool within Scrivener. I then saved that to Word format and did minor edits and clean-up in Word before submitting the manuscript.
Scrivener isn't free, but I think the license is only $40 or so.
VeganWithaYoYo: I do have non-alcoholic drinks in the book, though perhaps not as many as I should have included. (Maybe I can do that if I get a second edition!) One thing that's always true, though, is that just about any shrub is great topped off with club soda.
Just going for some variety in styling my photos, for Pete's sake. Give me a break.
I liked the BLL better than I expected to, though as I think I noted, I found that it tasted just a little metallic. I enjoyed the hell out of the cocktail, though. I'd serve that at a summer party, if I had enough room in this shoebox to host one.
Uh. The Godfather cocktail I wrote about IS the one with scotch and amaretto.
The Lock Yard is a very cool place to spend an afternoon.
It's perfectly fine to dislike Fernet. I can't normally stand it on its own; I find it's much better as a mixer. Sometimes, I'll drink it as a digestive. I had it after Thanksgiving dinner one year, and I found it immediately made my bloated stomach feel better. But then again, so do other bitter liqueurs that I usually enjoy drinking, so I don't see an upside.
There's some contract distilling in the Irish whiskey arena. The company that sells Michael Collins, for example, is currently in a lawsuit with Beam, Inc., over a contract to make Collins at Beam's Cooley distillery. But it's not like LDI where it's quiet and sort of secretive.
2 Gingers was made under contract at Cooley, too, but then Beam bought the brand.
Cooley makes Kilbeggan, Greenore, Connemara, and Tyrconnell.
New Midleton makes Jameson, Tullamore Dew, Powers, Paddy, Redbreast, Midleton Rare, and Green Spot. Green Spot is made under contract for a wine merchant in Dublin.
Old Bushmills makes Bushmills and Black Bush.
FWIW, Bushmills is owned by Diageo; Midleton is owned by Pernod-Ricard; and as I said, Cooley is owned by Beam, Inc., which in turn is now owned by Suntory.
I will admit, I prefer rye in a Boulevardier.
We drank zinfandel with this. The mildly sweet, low-tannic fruitiness really cut through the heat, while still complementing the beef.
Why so serious?