Largely out of curiosity, the spirits panel recently tasted through 20 bottles of blended Scotch in an effort to see what they offered. For the tasting, Florence Fabricant and I were joined by two drinks writers, David Wondrich and Robert Simonson. First, some definitions. All Scotch whisky must be made in Scotland. Single malts come from a single distillery and are distilled entirely from malted barley. Malting simply means soaking the barley until it germinates, which releases enzymes that convert starch

Source: Does Blended Scotch Still Have a Place in the Modern Bar? – The New York Times

Does Blended Scotch Still Have a Place in the Modern Bar? – The New York Times

Grape or grain, but never the twain,” goes the old saying, but brewers no longer seem to care. In a craft-beer world where no ingredient is off the menu – even really disgusting ones such as beard yeast or peanut butter – grapes have become an increasingly common addition to the brewing process.

Source: Brewing on the vine: four beer/wine hybrids to seek out | Life and style | The Guardian

Brewing on the vine: four beer/wine hybrids to seek out | Life and style | The Guardian

In the late 1880s, we also see the arrival of the Bijou, an almost Martini-like drink made of gin, sweet vermouth and Chartreuse, and featuring one of the first olive garnishes. By 1895, the Turf Cocktail appears in George J. Kappeler’s Modern American Drinks. It merely asked for the three ingredients: Old Tom Gin, Angostura and orange bitters

Source: The Evolution of the Martini from Sweet to Dry | PUNCH

The Evolution of the Martini from Sweet to Dry | PUNCH

It is very common to see everyday farmers in well known tea regions growing tea simply for their own supply, with small well tended plots. Often they will grow tiny amounts each year, just enough for themselves and their family and friends. If and when they do produce too much, often they are forced to simply sell it to Japans Agriculture Ministry at a low fixed price. This at least provides a subsidised basic income for that crop, and the tea eventually makes its way into mass blended tea described above. This can make it a challenge to find small scale growers who are happy to sell their precious tea. A challenge we were very happy to take on and it was with this in mind that we visited our favourite tea regions on the island of Kyushu, to procure some wonderful single origin teas direct from small scale farmers.

Source: Japan Tea Sourcing Trip | Tip Top Tea’s online tea store blog

Japan Tea Sourcing Trip | Tip Top Tea’s online tea store blog

“Sous vide negroni has been on the scene for a few years now,” says Sanna Tuomola, a bartender at Chapter. “Our negroni is inspired by other legends in the industry. I visited the Duck and Waffle bar in London a few months ago and tasted their Olive Americano. I loved it.”

The Olive Negroni is gently cooked, or “matured,” in sous vide at 122°F for 24 hours with a handful of olives in the mix to provide the drink an extra layer of flavor.

Source: How to Make a Sous Vide Negroni | Extra Crispy

How to Make a Sous Vide Negroni | Extra Crispy

With a few minor exceptions, there are really only two ways to say “tea” in the world. One is like the English term—té in Spanish and tee in Afrikaans are two examples. The other is some variation of cha, like chay in Hindi.

Both versions come from China. How they spread around the world offers a clear picture of how globalization worked before “globalization” was a term anybody used. The words that sound like “cha” spread across land, along the Silk Road. The “tea”-like phrasings spread over water, by Dut

Source: History of the word “tea”: How the word “tea” spread over land and sea — Quartz

History of the word “tea”: How the word “tea” spread over land and sea — Quartz

Whether it is neat, straight up or on the rocks, a gentleman should be able to make a drink that is as elegant and sophisticated as he is. Cocktails are celebrations of different flavours from all four corners of the globe and choosing from this myriad of variety is no mean feat. That said, there are the essentials that you simply cannot do without – those cornerstones of bygone bars which still form the basis of mixology today. Below are ten classic cocktails that every gentleman should be able to make. And remember, it’s always cocktail hour somewhere in the world…

Source: 10 cocktails that every gentleman should be able to make – StumbleUpon

10 cocktails that every gentleman should be able to make 

Here in Minnesota, no brunch spread is complete without a small glass of beer nestled next to your Bloody Mary. Also called a snit, on some mornings it’s the scrappy little sidekick aiding your hulking, tomato-based hero in fighting off last night’s hangover. Others, it’s the cheeky first mate, steering you with a wink toward a day-drinking afternoon while the captain’s back is turned. It is, objectively, a very good idea.

Which is why it’s kind of weird that no one really understands why or where the practice began. What is certain is this: If you order a breakfast cocktail outside of the Upper Midwest, you won’t get a beer back.

Source: Why do Bloody Marys come with a tiny beer? We investigate the Midwest phenomenon | City Pages

Why do Bloody Marys come with a tiny beer? We investigate the Midwest phenomenon | City Pages

When and how do you drink it Pure?

It’s mainly drunk as an aperitif; keep in mind that the word comes from the Greek meaning to whet (literally, open up) the appetite, so a glass of it, over ice, works before lunch or dinner. The name comes from the French pronunciation of the German word for wormwood, famously used in a number of alcoholic beverages and medicines up to the late 19th century, including absinthe. But the Germans didn’t invent it; it seems the Chinese were already doing something similar tho

Source: Vermouth: 10 things I learned in Barcelona – Ellen’s Wine World

Vermouth: 10 things I learned in Barcelona – Ellen’s Wine World

IF YOU VISIT A TRADITIONAL lambic brewery in Belgium, you’ll see spiders spinning webs among the casks. They are not a nuisance, and brewers don’t swat them away. The spiders are there by design to protect the fruity beer from fruit flies. The webs do, however, create a fitting environment for lambic, which can seem a little like magic. Using the oldest of all modern brewing styles, brewers summon wild yeast, resulting in funky, sour beers.

Source: The Heritage Beer Brewed With Some Help From Spiders – Atlas Obscura

The Heritage Beer Brewed With Some Help From Spiders – Atlas Obscura