Monday Booze News Tiki umbrellas have a history, missile shaped vodka bottles, and Stir & Strain was nominated for Saveur's Best Cocktail Blog

coconuts: booze news //

Monday Booze News: drink out of a dead squirrel, rookie home bartender mistakes, and that IS a pizza in your Bloody Mary

I put a cocktail in an ice sphere this week.

Monday Booze News salted cocktails, rats for free beer and puppies will explain mezcal to you

Terroni Spritz //

Monday Booze News: mushroom cocktails, Del’s lemonade shandy and George Washington was a lush

Monday Booze News //

Monday Booze News: Spirited Awards nominations, Al Capone’s cocktail shaker, and brunch is gonna suck in NYC now

Booze News: tales nominations, al capone's shaker and brunch sucks in NYC now //

Monday Booze News: the Bloody Mary turns 80, Tiki is still not dead and is that olive oil in your drink


Very, very early birthday gift of ancient stir sticks.
Very, very early birthday gift of ancient stir sticks.

Monday Booze News: the secret language of bartenders, Chinese New Year cocktails, and an awesome bar spoon

Fernet-Branca sent me a Valentine. I ate it in two seconds.
Fernet-Branca sent me a Valentine. I ate it in two seconds.



Do you have some news to share? Leave it below in the comments section and enlighten us all!

Monday Booze News: drinks on fire, expensive cocktails, and the 2014 trend forecast

Booze News // stirandstrain.comIt pains me to say this, but I find that more and more lately I hear breaking news reports through…twitter. For the longest time I resisted this social media program, until my day job forced me into it. And by forced, I mean realized that if we were not utilizing it for our business then we were dumb and behind the times. So I signed us up.

Initially when food trucks were all the rage (are they still they rage or have we moved on?), twitter was my source for looking up where I might find my favorite hotdog/french fry/whathaveyou vehicle. Then I got swallowed up in it and never escaped. On the other hand, I find out about current events usually AS THEY HAPPEN, and I can go to my grave now knowing what twerking is (apparently not something to do with drugs like I thought) and that I don’t care about ever trying a cronut (can’t we just eat some pie?).

So here’s some boozy news to peruse while you drink your morning coffee and try to look like you’re working. Courtesy of the internet.

Barrel Aging Cocktails (without a real wood barrel)

Barrel Aging Cocktails // stirandstrain.comScience Magic! The idea of ingredients going into something and coming out weeks later transformed into something else is a culinary world of mystery that intrigues me. When the concept of barrel aging your own cocktails became a trend I was all on board. It was yet one more way I could control and experiment with drinks.

Here in Los Angeles barrel aged cocktails are now familiar faces on menus but that’s where they seem to stay. I guess there isn’t really a consumer market for large barrels of one cocktail.

Wait. There is at MY house.

For some time now I’ve been dying to try barrel aging at home since it seemed like a DIY project that was very hands off. Step 1, booze goes into barrel. Step 2, wait around a bit. Step 3, uncork and enjoy. Pretty easy, right?

I thought so and accepted the challenge from Uncommon Goods* to try out barrel aging on a small scale (meaning without a barrel). Instead a barrel stave is stuck in the jar with the cocktail ingredients. It’s still all an easy to handle project scale. It’s also a cheaper alternative to buying a barrel and needing to explain to Christopher that the hallway closet is now the home of said barrel and nothing else.

The big question now is…. WHAT TO MAKE IN IT??? I could go for a Manhattan or a Negroni but really, I’ve had those barrel aged versions so many times out at bars that there has got to be a better cocktail to age. I’m wavering between a Hanky Panky and a Martinez. Can someone out there help me pick? Would a Martinez get too soft in there, or a Hanky Panky get too.. herbal?

If you all would like to try your hand at some DIY cocktail and boozy projects, Uncommon goods has a bunch of fun sets on their site over here. In the meantime, I’m going to weigh the pros and cons of what to make and if someone has a better idea, I’ll think about that too.

Stay tuned to find out who made it into the barrel the week of February 24th! And if you’re in L.A. I might invite you over for a taste.


*Items generously given gratis and appear here because I like them. Uncommon Goods are supporters of independent artisans and place importance on the designer. Got a design you think they might like? Check out their design challenges. For more info on sponsored products, affiliate links, and gifted booze, please visit the About page.

The Golden State of Cocktails Starts Tomorrow…

gsc_logo_yellowLos Angeles has their first full-blown cocktail happening starting tomorrow, January 28th. The Golden State of Cocktails will take place in downtown Los Angeles Tuesday through Thursday (my liver is crying in anticipation of the fully packed program) this week and I will be there covering as much ground as possible.

If you’re lucky enough to make it, please stop me and say hi! If you just want to kick back with your own cocktail and watch through the internet, you can follow along through various social media accounts. Here are mine for reference: