Archive for the Bartending at Home Category

Guess who can sabre?

Posted in Bartending at Home on December 9, 2008 by winechef

I woke up feeling better about myself today,and all it took was some good, inexpensive bottles of cava, my trusty chef knife, and an excuse to make pitchers of hibiscus tangerine mimosas. In a yard slightly larger than our 100 square feet kitchen, I donned my cheap sunglasses and yelled “Four!” as I ran the back side of my knife repeatedly up the seam of the bottle, and voila! A rainbow of bubbly and a cleanly decapitated vessel. I might just start every Sunday off this way. photo-179



Posted in Bartending at Home, Bay Area Festivities, Distillery Review, Food News, Illegal Substances, Product Review on December 26, 2007 by winechef


I myself, waited for nearly 3 hours in the freezing cold (for the Bay Area) to purchase 18 bottles for industry friends and hastilly bought 18 more on an inexplicable whim. I am sitting next to the credit card reciept totalling $2,936.25 and a glass of the classic “Death in the Afternoon,” Hemmingway’s drink of choice combining Absinthe and Champagne.

This day started loaded with anticipation. I had called and texted everyone I knew to ask if they wanted to get in on this historic release, at a hefty $75 plus tax, people were resistant. Then they all started xalling while I was in line that morning. Getting to the distillary was like being in a rally car race. People were ginning it around corners in the old military base then screaching to a hault when we realized, sadly, that we were no where near the only ones in line. Helicopters circled then hovered earily above the croud. Photogrophers spied us from atop the hangar. Journalists snuck in the back doors to bombard Lance with journalistic questions. And the rest of us froze. Pathetically inhaleing as the people leaving the building with their bottles breathed out the green fairy. I opened a credit card in line and spent the majority of the time praying that they would not run out before I got a chance to use it, bitching that someone should be handing out shots to the people with obvious addictions in line, making up illnesses in which the only cure was absinthe. Threatening to drink the whole bottle, refil it with NyQuil and sell it on the black market, we were bored, desparate, and truely hard core.

Like everyone else, the thought of making a profit on this little adventure has entered my mind so I turned to Craig’s List to see who else was venturing into the payoff for absinthe.jpgabsinthe.jpgthe time braved in line for this historic release. These are some of the posts I found.

 Good Morning,

If you are looking at this ad you know what I had to do to get this bottle. 3 hours at Hangar 1. Me, Tim and Rob standing in that bitter cold for the first batch. We told stories and talked to other people while trying to stay warm. This bottle means allot to me. I will only sell it if the buyer promises not to open it for at least 10 years and pays me in 1500 dollars in $1 bills. This bottle will sell for at least a million dollars in the next 200 years. By the way this is a serious ad. if you have $1500 in ones the bottle is yours.

Good Luck and Merry Christmas.

I waited in front of the door to St. George Distillery at the defunct Alameda Naval Station for 4 (count ’em F-O-U-R) days in the freezing wind and cold, waiting for the HISTORIC moment to arrive: the first U.S. distilled absinthe since 1912 available for legal purchase. Alas, the much awaited 11:00AM hour tolled on the 21st of December of the year 2007. The distillery doors flung open, smashing my frozen nose, but I was not deterred! My frost bitten fingers were shaking as I handed over my plastic currency and stuttered “T t t twelve b b b bottles p p p please”. At $75.00 USD a pop I could hardly afford this expenditure on my part-time clown income, but I was determined to chase the green fairy until I found doG, or, at least got laid. I hobbled through the warm tasting room past professional drinkers parading themselves as Grey Uniformed Green Fairy Guardians. Bursting through the back door I elbowed my way through throngs of green eyed monkeys hungrily eyeing my clinking cache of TRUTH ELIXER. Out on the desolate, weed choked former jet fighter runway I slammed the trunk of my convertible Falcon Futura closed on 11 bottles. Looking across the bay at the almost sinister skyline of Little Gotham West I slither into the back seat, frozen limbs tingling, heart audibly pounding my rib cage. I pop the cork and release the green fairy. Eschewing proper absinthe preparation I tip my head back and gulp straight from the bottle. Pungent aromas of anise and fennel assault my nostrils as the holy green liquid tumbles down my throat. I feel like I am simultaneously ascending and descending as distilled wormwood wriggles into my brain. I returned to this body 48 hours later and there are no words to explain that I now understand everything. You cannot revisit the revelation, thus I have no need to imbibe the remaining liquid doorway. I am dispensing the opened bottle to strangers, and have randomly scattered the remaining 11 bottles near fairy symbols throughout the Bay Area.

Strawberry Basiltini

Posted in Bartending at Home, Uncategorized on July 21, 2007 by winechef

This one is yummy. Say you have some random strawberrys and basil that are threatening to rot at any moment, save them with a little help from my friends vodka, sugar, and club soda, or whatever bubbley water 7-11 happens to have on hand. strawberry-basiltini.jpg

1 pint strawberries, washed and sliced

3 T sugar, depending on sweetness of strawberries

Blitz and set aside.

1 bunch basil, leaves picked

3 T sugar

12 oz vodka

Blitz in blender and strain.

Shake 2 oz basil vodka, 2 oz stawberry puree, and ice for 10 seconds vigerously. Strain into martini glass and top with fizzy H2O. Turn on Hell’s Kitchen and giggle your ass off.

Apricot Sangria

Posted in Bartending at Home, Recipe on July 7, 2007 by winechef

Apricot Sangria

A good friend of mine just moved into a home with the largest apricot tree I have ever seen. I decided to help her out by taking over 10 pounds home to play with.  The earliest creation? A white sangria kicked up a notch with random ingredients from my kitchen. Hope you enjoy!

2 bottles of cheap, but good, white wine. I used a new Lambrusco Bianco from Trader Joe’s for $3.99

1/2 c sugar

1 c brandy

1oz Cointreau

2 oranges, 1 sliced, 1 juiced

1 Tahitian Vanilla Bean, split

6 apricots, cut in 8ths

1 lemon, sliced

1 grapefruit , sliced (excessive rind removed)

1 lime, sliced

Club Soda

Combine alcohols, juice, and sugar, stir to dissolve. Stir in fruits and let sit in the fridge for 2 hours (well try). Pour over ice and top with club soda.