Food and Drink, We Love Drinks

Friday Happy Hour: Flipping Out

It’s less than a week until Thanksgiving, people, which means it’s time to start gearing up for holiday parties. Are you guys flipping out? Because I am planning to flip out. Hosting a holiday party for friends and family with quality cocktails on the menu can be a tough feat to pull off. I certainly learned my lesson last year when I volunteered to make a proper boozy egg nog with whipped eggs whites and all. Let me tell you… never again. Even with my trusty all-in-one immersion blender/egg white frother/home defense weapon, it was impossible to keep a mixture of cream, eggs, sugar, and booze warm and frothy all night. If only I had known about flips back then. The flavor and texture is not exactly like egg nog, but it’s close enough that flips are a worthy shortcut. That said, not all flips are created equal.

A tale of two flips: there are two schools of thought concerning flips. One way is the old school mix of eggs, spirit, sweetener, and (very optional) citrus and soda. Which is more akin to egg nog, especially without the citrus and soda. Then there’s the stuff that sailors used to drink, a mix of spirits, sweetener and beer. That’s the old, old school method, so old that it ranks up there with grog, rock and rye (low and slow, baby!), and colonial-era punches in its historical street cred. And there’s the question of serving temperature, hot or cold? Egg flips are traditionally served cold but can be served warm–though I can’t say that I recommend it, unless you don’t mind the occasional scrambled egg in your cocktail–and beer flips are almost exclusively served warm.

Where can you get a good flip in this city? Continue reading

Food and Drink, The Daily Feed, We Love Drinks

Imbibe Loves DC Too

Photo courtesy of
‘The Tabard Cocktail’
courtesy of ‘Samer Farha’

The September/October 2010 edition of Imbibe magazine is out and features a sampling of the DC cocktail and beer scenes. With cocktail recipes from Gina Chersevani of PS7, Alex Bookless of The Passenger (recent winner of the Rickey Contest), and Chantal Tseng of Tabard Inn, the ladies represent!

Try your hand at mixing up Gina’s “Beetiful Bubbles” with, yes, beet syrup, or Alex’s “That Cucumber Drink” muddling cucumber and mint, or my personal long-term favorite, Chantal’s “Tabard Cocktail” combining sherry and tequila. Fantastic.

The current issue also breaks down 20 beer spots both inside and outside the city highlighting both the usual suspects like Greg Engert’s program at Birch & Barley/Churchkey and a few surprises.

The best part about DC being featured in Imbibe this month? The tone is congratulatory, not condescending in that way we sometimes see other national publications yap about DC’s food/drink offerings (Grey Lady, I am looking at you). I love it when our local talent gets recognized!

The Features, We Love Drinks

2009, A Glass Half Full

Glass Half Full

"Glass Half Full" by Jenn Larsen on Flickr

When I inaugurated the We Love Drinks feature back in September 2008, I really didn’t give it much thought to start with, honestly. We founding writers were tossing around feature ideas, and I said, “hey, what about drinks? I go out a fair amount.” That simple. It began mostly with bar reviews, with some coffee and tea thrown in for good measure.

But that slowly started to change when I realized there were people passionate about drinks culture in the city – not just nightlife and where to go to get wasted (not that I was writing about that! those days are over, darlings, good-bye jello shots!). It was a humbling experience to discover what a neophyte I was – when I got caught in the crossfire of a discussion on how to make your own bitters, for example, or the first time someone asked me whether I preferred green or yellow Chartreuse. Certainly the vast world of wine was still a mystery despite the wine bar explosion, and don’t even get me started about my beer ineptitude.

So why I am admitting this to you? Because these days I’m all about humility. I may be opinionated, but I’m still eager to learn and am constantly excited about the many different possibilities in our city of drinks. Respect for the taste and the balance of a proper cocktail, diving into the vast world of wine and beer, and most importantly understanding your own tolerance – that’s been my experience in 2009. Here are a few key moments that helped me on this continuing journey. Continue reading

Food and Drink, Special Events, The Daily Feed

Whisky Me Away

"great scot!" by IntangibleArts, on Flickr

"great scot!" by IntangibleArts, on Flickr

PS7′s scored quite a coup when it nabbed top mixologist Gina Chersevani as its “head mixtress” back in January. One of my favorite places for drinks, its lounge lined with banquettes and windows is a great happy hour spot on any night.

But tonight is a special one for those of you who love Scotch whisky (is this redundant? I’m sure one of our clever readers can chime in, I can never figure out the whole whiskey/whisky/Scotch distinction) as PS7′s is featuring a scotch tasting for Balvenie, with Ms. Chersevani whipping up the whisky into delectable drinks and Balvenie’s “ambassador” Sam Simmons on hand to teach you all about the liquor the ancient Celts called “uisge beatha” – the water of life…

From 5:30-7:30pm you can sample their 12-Year Doublewood, 15-Year Single Barrel, and 17-Year Rum Cask scotches. Of course there will be noshes. And may I remind you that legally Scotch may not be bottled at under 40% alcoholic volume. So please, indulge in the nibbles while you sample and learn. It is only Tuesday, after all!