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Cocktails | Manolo's Food Blog - Part 6
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First Floor, going UP!

and going down, the hatch that is.

I know, I HAD to use it and I’m sorry already, okay?

Anyway, this is just a quickie cocktail post about my new favorite cocktail, which has actually usurped the place in my heart formerly held by my beloved Negroni.

As some of you may know, latterly my liver and I are barely on speaking terms, and I’m drinking less like a sailor than like a … I don’t know … I don’t actually have any cultural reference points for people who don’t drink like that. What can I say, I’m Irish! Anyway, I’m definitely preferring my cocktails on the lighter side lately, and this one has all the complexity and bittersweet charm of the Negroni, but without the vicious kick.

The Bon Marché cocktail was invented on a blustery night last week by my favorite bartender, Mr. Jay Jones, who’s newly installed as bar manager at Market by Jean-Georges in the Shangri-La hotel. Yes, in Canada we have our good restaurants in hotels. We just gotta be contrarian that way.

Anyway, it was invented specifically for me when I said I’d leave it up to him. “Sweet? Bitter? Creamy?” Bitter. Hey, I gotta be me. And so it was, and delicious it is, enough to make a whole blog post out of, trust me.

You make this just like a Martini, meaning you have to chill the glass, so do that first. I know you, you don’t store your glasses in the freezer, do you? Chuck some cubes into it and fill it with cold water while you putter around going “do we even HAVE orange bitters?” and it’ll be cold enough by the time the drink is mixed.

Bon Marché

  • 1.5 oz Beefeater 24
  • 0.5 oz Campari
  • 0.5 oz Giffard Abricot Du Roussillon
  • 2 dashes Fee Brothers’ West Indian Orange Bitters
  • lemon zest

Mix over ice, stir until chilled, strain into a cocktail glass, garnish with lemon zest and yes, you squeeze it over the drink before you plop it in and if you’re in the mood, wipe rim the glass with the zest as well. Since this is a hot pink stunner of a cocktail, a clear glass is essential for showing it off, but cut crystal will bring out the tones better than a classically minimalist one would. Keep the purist glass for purist Martinis, and try this gorgeous, po-mo Wood Grain Martini Glass from that very po-mo collective, Waterford.

Wood Grain Martini glass by Michael Aram for Waterford

Tales of the Cocktail, Vancouver

Vieux Carre cocktail at Tales of the Cocktail, Vancouver by Degen Beley

Tales of the Cocktail, Vancouver by Degen Beley

They call us Hollywood North, and soon they’ll be calling us New Orleans North, as Vancouver will host the first ever Tales of the Cocktail event outside of NOLA, from March 13-15th. I guess they picked it for the swamp-like conditions that prevail in March?

At the media launch yesterday they announced the winner of the contest for the Official Cocktail of Tales of the Cocktail Vancouver, and while I don’t currently have ANY of the ingredients, I’m looking forward to trying it ASAP: The winner was the Dalhousie Cocktail by Jonathan Smolensky from Brix and George (aka “that place with the Chihuly chandelier”) and it does sound delish:

Dalhousie Cocktail Recipe

Start by taking 6-8 Canada plums, which have been dehydrated in coarse sugar, and steep them in Gibson’s 18yr Canadian whisky for 4-5 days.

Then use these ingredients:

60 ml (2 oz.) Canada plum infused 18yr Gibson’s

15 ml (1/2 oz.) Domaine de Canton liqueur

10 ml (1/3 oz.) Zwack Unicum

1-2 dashes of high quality rendition of Boker’s bitters

Lemon peel

Chill a coupe glass and a mixing/Boston glass.

In a mixing glass, add the Canada plum infused 18yr Gibson’s, the Domaine de Canton, the Zwack Unicum, and Boker’s bitters. Stir until heavy and properly diluted.

Remove the pith of the lemon peel and rub the peel on the inside edge of the coupe glass, then toss the peel.

Double strain all mixed ingredients into the coupe glass and garnish with a small Canada plum fan.

Then, presumably, put on Barrett’s Privateers, don a festive toque (our Northern fez substitute) and enjoy. Yes, this is going to take some shopping. I think I’m all out of Zwack Unicum, and it takes time to give a unicorn a quality zwacking off.

Christmas Cheers!

I'll be lucky if I don't wikileak in the cab

Oh, Julian, hold me back!

I’m sorry to say, I’m always that guy at the annual Manolosphere holiday party, especially since I got the below for Christmas. Oh well, what happens on Mustique stays on Mustique, right?
LED Martini Glasses

Thanksgiving Cocktails that are vile and that do not come from Sandra Lee

I know! I thought they all did, too!

This one comes from Twitter:

And, yeah, if you need a Sandra Lee fix today (remember, that Christmas episode is coming up!) here you go. Watch it and weep. Weep for our culture.

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