Kopstootjes in Nashville

My next stop for Bols is Nashville, TN. It’s been four or five years since I’ve been in the city, so I’m looking forward to seeing how it’s developed and revisiting the Vanderbilt campus. What are the bars and restaurants I shouldn’t miss?

If you’re in town, join me at the aptly named Holland House for a Kopstootje tomorrow (Tuesday). We’ll have them on special from 5-7 pm.


Links 9/15/11

Penn Jillette talks about the magic of politics:

Is our entire political system built on this unwilling suspension of disbelief? We don’t really have a choice, so it’s sure unwilling. We know somewhere in our hearts that our political saviors are not really magic, but we so want them to be. We could bust every one of them if we just broke the rules for a moment. It’s all hanging by a very hard-to-see little thread.

A wonderful story about Richard Feynman and his dogged determination to seek rational explanations: “Here he is, describing a moment of enormous significance, and he won’t allow a Signifier.”

This looks like a solid intro guide to “travel hacking.”

Evangelical Christians armed with a bullhorn and a video camera invade Vanderbilt’s fraternity row on game day.

A nice write-up of our Houston Bols Genever launch event at Anvil in Culture Map.




The Caipirinha, a simple mixture of muddled lime, sugar, and cachaça, lends itself to infinite variation. Different fruits or syrups are often added to it. A German friend tells me that the Hot Caipi — a Caipirinha made with hot water instead of ice — is popular in the winter there. At Metrovino we give the drink a Pacific Northwest twist, finishing it with a hoppy Oregon ale.

Ezra from The New School came up with the idea of making a Caipirinha with beer. We tried out several variations, but I decided I like this simple one the best. It’s a basic Caipirinha topped off with about an ounce of IPA. The beer adds a lightly bitter backbone and some length to the cocktail, making it a perfect summer patio drink.

2 oz cachaça
1/2 lime, cut into quarters
1 tablespoon sugar
1 oz IPA

Muddle the sugar and lime, add the cachaça, and shake with ice. Dump everything into a rocks glass, top with the IPA, and give it a gentle stir before serving.

For the cachaça we of course use my favorite Novo Fogo Silver; our beer is Ninkasi Total Domination IPA. The flavors work wonderfully together.

[Thanks to Brenda from Food Shed for the excellent photo.]

Crystal Caipirinha and Cleared for Departure


What I’ve been drinking

A few of the samples that have been sent my way recently…

Remy Martin Louis XVIII — Despite what you may have heard about the glamorous and lucrative world of writing about cocktails, it’s not every night that I settle in with a snifter of Louis XIII. However thanks to the nice folks at Remy Martin, I was able to try this Cognac recently in celebration of Remy’s new Jeroboam bottle, which weighs in at three liters for €16.000.

Of course they didn’t send me the Jeroboam. I received their 50 ml bottle, which appears to retail for about $400. This is the most impressive mini bottle I have seen, arriving in a hard shell and modeled after the standard bottle, right down to the stopper to place in the neck after opening.

You’re probably not buying this for the bottle though, unless you’re trying to project the image of a very wealthy man with extraordinarily large hands. So how does it taste? Pretty amazing actually. Very light and taking on just enough vanilla from the oak. I could sip it all night. Obviously this is something you’d only buy if you have a fair amount of disposable income and you could buy much higher quantities of other very enjoyable booze with the same money. Whether it’s worth spending that much on any spirit is up to you, but it is very good.

Bulleit Rye — It’s a rye! From Bulleit! Bulleit is already known for its bourbon with a high rye content, so this is a natural extension for them. It’s 90 proof and 95% rye. It actually has a less assertive rye flavor than I expected, which will probably help it appeal to a larger market. I prefer it to their bourbon for sipping neat and it makes a nice Manhattan. Prices are all over the place on this one, but if you find it in the low $20s it’s worth picking up.

Blandy’s 10 Year Old Malmsey — Madeira is not a product I have much familiarity with, but the more I drink it the more I like it. This one is no exception. Being a Malmsey it’s on the sweeter side but nicely balanced by acidity and rich, raisiny flavors. It’s delicious. And one other plus: Unlike some other fortified wines, Madeira has been through enough oxidation, aging, and heating during its production to last for a long time after opening, so it’s an ideal wine to keep around and drink at leisure.


Bols in Houston

I’m headed back to my hometown today for the launch of Bols Genever in Houston. For industry and media, we’re hosting an event at Anvil Bar and Refuge from 1-3 tomorrow (Wednesday); contact me if you’d like to attend. Then for the rest of the night Anvil is offering a menu of cocktails featuring Bols and Galliano for anyone who’d like to stop in.

On Thursday I’m guest bartending with Mindy Kucan at Grand Prize Bar. This should be lots of fun, with Bols cocktails, kopstootjes, and even a frozen Harvey Wallbanger. That will run from 4:30 till 7ish. If you’re in Houston I hope to see you at one of these events!


Links for 9/2/11

A couple of years ago I wrote about the selling a brick scam, in which a conman dresses up worthless bricks as valuable electronics. It lives on with iPads.

Ron Bailey asks whether homeopathic remedies should be required to carry warning labels indicating that they have not been proven effective.

Bloomberg’s latest ban: Dogs in bars, even bars with outdoor seating. Will this give rise to barkeasies in Brooklyn?

The Pacific Northwest is due for a megaquake. And when it hits, it’s going to be bad.

Blog pal Rumdood is up for a job as a rumologist. Go help him out and give him a vote.

It wasn’t me.