May Cocktail of the Month: The Barbacoa

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Thanks to the celebration of Cinco de Mayo, it’s no surprise that the sale of tequila begins to rise at the beginning of May. As tequila has become the national liquor of Mexico and the foundation of the holiday’s signature cocktail, the spirit has become synonymous with May itself.

But we think there’s another Mexican spirit that, while recently gaining popularly, has yet to achieve the same kind of acclaim that it deserves, and that’s mezcal. Tequila’s agave-based cousin — once linked to the idea of a gimmicky bottle with a worm at the bottom — has been on the rapid rise, doubling in sales over the last four years. Though it’s become one of the fastest-growing spirits in the United States, due to the availability of higher-quality brands, it can still only stake claim to a small amount of the market. Read More

5 Essential Margaritas for Cinco de Mayo

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When we think of reasons to drink during May, Cinco de Mayo is unsurprisingly the thing that comes to mind. Though the holiday originally began as an observance of the Mexican Army’s unlikely victory over the French during the Battle of Puebla in 1862, it’s taken on a significance beyond that — at least in the United States.

Today, Cinco de Mayo is all about celebrating the Mexican-American community — which makes up roughly 11% of the US population — and the culture they’ve created. The holiday wouldn’t be complete without tequila, the national liquor of Mexico, nor a few of the most famous tequila-based cocktail: the margarita. Read More

Zima Is Making a Comeback! 9 Cocktails to Make with the ‘90s Classic

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We’re not entirely sure when it first happened, but the 1990s have become the quintessential decade for nostalgia. As we live in an age overrun by internet trolls, exploding technology, and horrifying news events around every turn, many argue this nostalgia is due to millennials longing for their childhood memories — a simpler, more innocent time filled with unironic AIM screen names, Nintendo 64, and Saved by the Bell. Well, rejoice, ‘90s kids, because another classic from the decade is set to make a comeback: that fizzy, citrusy, slightly boozy beverage known as Zima. Read More

5 Bottles of Booze to Splurge on With Your Tax Refund

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Now that your taxes have (hopefully) been taken care of, were you lucky enough to get a refund? If you just so happen to have a few hundred or maybe even thousand dollars burning a hole in your pocket, might we make an obvious suggestion? Booze.

We don’t know about you, but it’s not often we’re able to treat ourselves to lavishly expensive bottles of liquor. So when that moment does arrive, we make sure to take advantage. Below are five bottles of booze we’ll be splurging on with our tax refund.

End up owing the government money this year? We’re sorry. You deserve for someone else to buy you a drink. Read More

National Beer Day Is April 7th! 5 Beer Cocktails Every Imbiber Needs

Cocktail facts & history / Cocktail ideas / email

As if we needed an excuse to drink beer (we don’t), April 7th marks National Beer Day in the United States. Unlike a lot of other booze-related holidays — International Gin & Tonic Day, National Cosmopolitan Day, and World Whisky Day, just to name a few — National Beer Day wasn’t invented just for any old reason to drink. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that.) We’ve actually got history to thank. Let us explain. Read More

8 Classic Cocktails Reinvented

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Every seasoned drinker has a favorite classic cocktail — a go-to that every bartender, from the swanky craft cocktail lounges to the seedy dives, should know how to make. The even better bartenders, be they professionals or at-home amateurs, know how to transform these classics in a way that still celebrates the original recipes while giving them a modern twist.

We turned to bartenders, food bloggers, and home experimenters to round up our favorite reinventions of the following classics, including the Cosmopolitan, Manhattan, martini, and Negroni. Some get a slight update with fresh fruits and vegetables, while others are more provocative thanks to ingredients like squid ink and marijuana. (Yes, you read that correctly.) Read More

7 Washington Wines You Need to Try Now… At Every Price Point

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Every year, the state of Washington celebrates its award-winning wine industry — widely considered to be one of the best in the country — with the annual Taste of Washington Wine Month. March is filled with events every day across the state from Woodinville to Walla Walla, including wine tastings, dinners, and winemaker retreats.

The month culminates with the massive Taste of Washington festival, a can’t-miss weekend for anyone interested in food and wine. (And really, who isn’t?) The event brings out more than 225 Washington wineries, all pouring tastes of their best vinos, as well as 65 local restaurants serving Seattle favorites like oysters and crab.

Seeing as how we’re not ones to pass up any reason to drink wine, we thought it was only appropriate to honor Washington Wine Month with a roundup of styles produced in the state that you should definitely be drinking. Thanks to higher temperatures and ample sun over the last few years (no, it doesn’t always rain in Washington), the region has churned out some increasingly warmer vintages that are accessible enough for wine newcomers, yet still feel like age-worthy creations to the connoisseurs. Read More

March Cocktail of the Month: The Irish Cocktail

Cocktail ideas / email / seasonal

The Irish Coffee, the Blarney Stone, the Celtic Twilight — plenty of cocktails have originated in Ireland. But of all the countless drinks to come from this country, there’s only one known simply as The Irish Cocktail.

First appearing in the 1888 edition of Harry Johnson’s Bartenders’ Manual, The Irish Cocktail has certainly been around the block. Since then, its recipe has popped up in the likes of Harry MacElhone’s 1927 Barflies and Cocktails, Patrick Gavin Duffy’s 1983 Official Mixer’s Manual, and as recently as the 2013 Savoy Cocktail Book.

And there’s a reason this recipe has withstood the stand of time: The combination is unexpected yet decidedly delicious. Its blend of whiskey, absinthe, curacao, and maraschino liqueur is a bit like a Sazerac-meets-an-Old-Fashioned, but then it’s garnished with a flaming orange twist and — get this — a green olive. Read More

Here’s Everything You Need to Know About Vermouth

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Much like that bit character who comes into a movie for just a few moments but has an indelible effect on the progression of the story, vermouth is in all-too-often forgotten player in the journey of a cocktail. Despite the fact that it’s a necessary ingredient to many classic drinks (martini and Manhattan, anyone?), vermouth is frequently pushed to the wayside — relegated to a dusty spot on your bar alongside bottles of creme de menthe and Chambord. (How long have those been there, anyway?)
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3 Sophisticated Hot Cocktails to Cure Those End-of-Winter Blues

Cocktail ideas / email / seasonal

Depending on where you live, the weather may be warming up or spring may even feel like it’s already arrived. But in other parts of the world, winter is alive and well (and there’s wallet-draining heating bills to prove it).

When nights are still chilly, there are few better things than cozying up on the couch with a mug of something warm — ideally something boozy and warm. Which is why we thought it was the perfect time for a roundup of the hot cocktails we’ve been turning to in order to get us through the end-of-winter blues.

Of course, there’s nothing wrong with simply adding a shot of whiskey to a cup of coffee or tea, but why not approach your hot cocktail with a bit more sophistication? After all, just because a shaker and ice aren’t involved, that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to overly simplify. So, without further ado, here are three of the hot toddies, spiced wines, and spiked ciders that’ll keep you warm through the end of winter — all in elegant style. Read More