California Rum Festival!

Klaus and I will be at the California Rum Festival, showcasing Mezan and Stroh Rums. Join us and other trade and run aficionados for an amazing time!

511 Harrison Street. San Francisco CA  Saturday, September 12, 2015  2:30 PM to 8:00 PM (PDT)

http://www.stroh.at/

http://www.mezanrum.com/verification.php

http://www.californiarumfest.com/

Warren Bobrow mezan-rum sq st

Talking Cocktails and more

Barrel House American Bar 252 Cabot Street, Beverly, MA 01915
Coming up Friday, August 21, cocktail book author Warren Bobrow will be here to talk about his three books “Bitters and Shrubs” “Whiskey Cocktails” and “Apothecary Cocktails”! Check out the caramelized peach and white balsamic shrub he whipped up paired with the Tavern Style rum from Old Ipswich Rum, who will also be on hand!

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apothecary cocktails in French!
apothecary cocktails in French!

Cocktail Tasting and Author Talk |


August 20, 6-9 pm ’30’s on Film  Peabody Essex Museum Bartlett Gallery 161 Essex Street, Salem, MA 01970


Join author and mixologist Warren Bobrow as he demonstrates an inventive cocktail recipe and explores the connection between cocktails and film. He will sign copies of his book Apothecary Cocktails: Restorative Drinks from Yesterday and Today, available from the Museum Shop.

apothecary cocktails in French!

 

#PEMPM 8/20 6-9pm for cocktail tasting and author talk! More details: http://ow.ly/QPovE

New Orleans Pharmacy Museum; Book signing!

Book signing: Apothecary Cocktails by Warren Bobrow

Could there be a better setting for this event?! Come hear Warren Bobrow, aka the Cocktail Whisperer, talk about the resurgence of shrubs (drinks made with very tasty syrups) in the mixology world. He will also discuss the early apothecary, snake oil, patent medicines and his fascinating family history in the over-the-counter pharmaceutical business. 

 Copies of Apothecary Cocktails and Warren’s newest publication, Bitters & Shrub Syrup Cocktails will be available for purchase and for signing!

 Join us between 1pm and 3pm for this special event on Wednesday, July 15th, at the Pharmacy Museum. The location is 514 Chartres Street, New Orleans, Between St Louis and Toulouse in the French Quarter- (504) 565-8027

apothecary cocktails in French!
apothecary cocktails in French!

Diver Scallops With Cava (DrinkupNY)

Diver Scallops with Cava

By Warren Bobrow, Cocktail WhispererCooking with the same wines as I drink is one of the hidden secrets of culinary arts.  But what about drinking and cooking with sparkling wines? These fizzy numbers are just marvelous when woven into dishes that call for the very best in the world.  The kind of fresh (never frozen) seafood like those sold at Metropolitan Seafood in Lebanon, New Jersey.  I bet that you’ve never tasted fish like this before and when washed down with a glass of theperfectly crystalline, fizzy wine, well there is magic in each and every sip.  If you are anywhere near this part of New Jersey on any given day, except for Sunday or Monday when the Hunt’s Point Fresh Seafood Market is open, well, it’s time to ice the bubbly!I’m a firm believer that you don’t have to spend a great deal of money on sparkling wine to enjoy a memorable bottle.  Take Spain for instance.  They make boatloads of passable fizzy wines in Spain.  However, very few are of excellent quality like the Cellar Vilafranca “Casteller” Cava Brut NV from Cataloniain Spain.  This lightly fizzy wine just screams out for thin slices of freshly harvested “Diver” Scallops that are seared in a stainless steel sauté panand then the pan is deglazed with a few splashes of the Cava and some shallots are added.  A bit of heavy cream can added be after the Cava reduces in volume. This thickness is added for depth and structure.  An ice-cold pat of butter will bring the flavors together, along with a tiny pinch of exotic saffron for color and character at the finish.

This dish is so gorgeous and opulent, it smacks of the ocean as it coats your tongue.  The charisma and the salinity of the flavors move gently down your throat and into your memories of the greatest meals of your life.  That added burst of the sparkling wine will bring you into the complexities of this dish- just how delicious it really is with wine of this quality.

Of course before I go much further, I must tell you how reasonably priced this wine is.  DrinkUpNY has it for just about fifteen dollars per bottle.  That is amazingly delicious, crisp- aromatic and very refreshing wine tastes as if lime and lemon zests have been injected into each sip.  There is salinity in the glass that gives the impressions of ocean-splashed stones and an added pinch of sea salt in every zippy sip.  Cooking with Cellar Vilafranca “Casteller” Cava is a joy because with the complex and assertive nature of the 40% Macabeo, 40% Parellada and 20% Xarello grapes, this is not your mom’s low-end “plonk” bottle of sparkling liquid that hurts you badly the next morning.

Cellar Vilafranca is really worth the few bucks you spend for something that tastes much more expensive.

Ingredients
Seared fresh, (never frozen) Diver Scallops with Saffron Sauce
1 pound Fresh Diver Scallops, Sliced into somewhat thin slices with a very sharp and narrow fish knife, you may want to put the scallops into the freezer for a few minutes for easier slicing
1-teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
¼ teaspoon dried Saffron in total  (A few precious Saffron threads per person are all you need)
1 teaspoon very thinly slices of shallot
¼ cup Heavy Cream
2 tablespoons Sweet Butter (I never cook with salted butter, you shouldn’t either)
Pinch of freshly ground Sea Salt
Freshly Ground Pepper
2 oz. Cellar Vilafranca Cava (per plate and definitely more for your glass!)
Stainless Steel (preferably with a copper core) pan

Preparation:
Heat your stainless steel pan to sizzling hot, drop a bit of water in the pan to test temperature, if it jumps around and beads, the pan is hot enough

Dribble the olive oil into the pan and slide the Diver Scallop slices into the sizzling hot oil

Do not touch for 1-2 minutes- and then flip with a stainless steel fish spatula and season with a touch of sea-salt and freshly cracked black pepper

Remove medallions of the Diver Scallops from the pan and keep warm and moist.  You may want to put a hot (clean) cloth that has been lightly spritzed with salted water on them and then into the oven at around 250 degrees.  Don’t cover them?  They’ll be like pencil erasers.  Hard rubber ones!

Add the Cellar Vilafranca Cava wine to the hot pan that you just cooked the scallop slices.  It’s going to sizzle like crazy, so now would be a good time to throw in those shallot slices.  Also add the Saffron threads at this time and sweat a bit in the liquid them to reveal their inner secrets.

Add the Heavy Cream- reduce until it looks “scary” I’m telling you as a cook now, you’ll think it’s reduced enough, but please, do it some more… you’ll know when it takes on a caramelized color, the heavy cream’s sugars cooking with the shallot and the saffron. It’s one of life’s simple pleasures right here.  But it’s not done yet, take a sip of your brilliantly made Spanish Cava and contemplate.  Do I feel lucky with this sauce?  Did it break?  (I hope not)

Add the Ice Cold Butter now and whisk it in small pieces- right into the hot cream sauce… there is a term for this… but I forget what it’s called, montes? Montay? oh well.  I was once a saucier in the restaurant business a few decades ago.  I trained my entire career to learn about soups, stocks and sauces.  They used to sayin New Orleans, your sauce is supposed to coat the back of a spoon.  And I, in my infinite wisdom would say, what kind of spoon?  A soup spoon?  A wooden spoon? What?  Metal?  Silver?  Uh?  No wonder I didn’t become a better cook.  I wanted to know which one.  Any one!

Reduce a bit more and pour the sauce over the warmed Diver Scallop Medallions, you could scatter some scallion threads over the top for a white, red and green motif. If desired of course.. … get some nice crusty bread for dipping that fragrant sauce, redolent with the saline punch of the scallops with the mysterious sweetness of the saffron and the warmth of the heavy cream.  Yum is correct.

Serve on a pre-heated dish and garnish with pinwheels of lemon

Serve with an ice-cold glass of the Cellar Vilafranca Cava, open another one and chill a third, you’re going to need it to wash down this brilliant seafood and stimulate conversation…

And then there were three….Books and a Bar Tour of Morristown, NJ.

http://www.qbookshop.com/authors/17884/Warren-Bobrow.html

With the release last week on Amazon of my third book, Bitters and Shrub Syrup Cocktails, I must pause for a moment to reflect upon the past few years…  Ok, now that I’ve finished reflection- it’s time to get back to work.

I was introduced a couple days ago to Eventbrite, which is, if you don’t know already – the global leader in event planning and implementation. They’re a cool place to find local events, or organize events, and sell tickets to your events!
I’m participating in their new project that is called – quite simply- Hometown Hunt.
I’ll be sharing my favorite local spots on Cocktailwhisperer.com , my own website that has unlocked many doors since I built it.
It’s a pretty simple site, not a whole lot of bells and whistles here! So hopefully you can follow along with me and let me know what you think.

One of the things that I don’t often do is “blog”… Years ago, I took a course in food blogging at the former French Culinary Institute and it didn’t go well- primarily because I don’t consider myself a blogger!  I think columnist fits the bill better- yet I digress,  blogging is big business for spirits companies!

How do you monetize it though?

 

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Why you should go to the Jockey Hollow Restaurant. 

I haven’t been to eat, but I do know that their cocktail program is world-class with Christopher James at the helm.   Chris is my mentor and friend- full disclosure, I bar-backed for him at the Ryland Inn (scary) and learned that being a bartender is not always a glamorous job!  It’s darned hard work!

Chris is fond of many advanced techniques within the confines of the bar.  In many ways, what he has achieved is part of a brilliant career.  Hat’s off to him!  And the Jockey Hollow Restaurant?  As I said, I haven’t dined there yet- maybe someday…

Here is a short list of places that get it with respect to cocktails in Morristown, NJ.

David Todd’s..  from the moment you hear the familiar music and New York Cool- without the NYC attitude- and dig deeply into their Wine Spectator Award of Excellence cellar or what I came for- the well-crafted cocktails- made with the best possible ingredients- well… you know you have arrived.  There is no pretension here- even though that gal or guy sitting next to you has their own private jet, fueled and ready at Morristown Airport.  So try to dress to impress, because you never know!

The hand-crafted drinks, some deceptively strong will make that first impression correct.  This is one of the most beguiling of all the Morristown places that gets it with great drinks.  And the food?  It plays in conjunction with the cocktails and most certainly the well-chosen wine list.

Just go!  Have a Negroni, sit outside and watch the world go by.

The Negroni

By Warren Bobrow, Cocktail WhispererI love the drink named the Negroni. It’s bright, refreshing and quenches the thirst, unlike many cocktails. It never leaves me feeling drab, nor does it take away my appetite like some other cocktails do when sipped before a meal.In my upcoming book, Apothecary Cocktails, Restoratives from Yesterday and Today, I discuss the correlation of the digestive tract and healing, by using liquors mixed with fresh herbs. If only the pharmacists from years back had known about the Negroni as a healing curative! Well, in a way they did.

The Negroni was invented back in 1919 in Florence, Italy – purposively built to heal what ails you. Orson Wells famously said in 1947 that, “The bitters are excellent for your liver, the gin is bad for you. They balance each other.” I don’t know about you, but I think gin is good for you. Perhaps Mr. Wells had it altogether incorrect. The entire drink is good for you. Gin, after all, was used during the Middle Ages as a curative for the Black Plague. And Vermouth has long been held as a curative for many internal battles surrounding the digestive glands.

The history of the Negroni involves a base spirit, like gin, plus bitters and vermouth. I enjoy my Negroni Cocktail with the powerfully intoxicating Caorunn Gin from Scotland. Distilled with a healthy smack of the juniper berry and woven into a backdrop of citrus with a hefty punch of alcohol, the Caorunn Gin just tempts me to have another. Combined with the syrupy and complex Carpano Antica Vermouth and the historically correct Campari Bitters from Italy, the Negroni speaks very clearly of getting buzzed with the minimum of effort. I just sipped my Negroni down and absolutely feel no pain. And why would I, with the application of my finger to stir this magnificent cocktail?

My friend Gary Regan stirs his with his finger so why shouldn’t I?

Well the reasons are numerous why you should not stir your cocktail with your finger. Cleanliness has something to do with this. But I suppose if you dipped your finger in your tri-sink filled with disinfectants and cleansers, you’d really have nothing to worry about as long as you were in your own home. I always use a cocktail spoon when working behind the bar so not to upset my customers! The drink shown was mixed with my own finger… far away from any paying customers!

The best Negroni is also the simplest one to make. I do only a couple of things differently:

1. Wash glass out inside and out with cool water.
2. Dry carefully with a soft towel.
3. Pack with ice and water.
4. Carefully measure out your ingredients, pour out the bar ice and water.

I also use a couple large hand-cut cubes of ice from a silicone tray in the freezer so I can control the quality of my ice.

The Negroni Cocktail

Ingredients:
• 1 oz. Campari
• 1 oz. Carpano Antica
• 1 oz. Caorunn Gin
• 2 dashes of The Bitter Truth Lemon Bitters

Preparation:

1. Add Campari.
2. Add Sweet Vermouth –

I ALWAYS USE Carpano Antica for the second step.

3. Add your choice of Gin. In this case I used Caorunn Gin from Scotland. Caorunn is liberally flecked with citrus fruit woven around the haunting elegance of the moors at night.

4. Add The Bitter Truth Lemon Bitters.
5. Add ice.
6. Stir all ingredients together…

(And no, you don’t have to use your finger!!!)

Grand Cafe… transport  yourself into this very European restaurant, owned by Desmond and Alice Lloyd.  This is a boite of the highest provenance.  Don’t come in jeans or shorts, make sure your shirt is pressed and tie your shoes, yes… it matters…  Then, please comb your hair and while you’re at it, clean your glasses .  This is not a bar, sure they have a small one for a pre-dinner slurp-made very carefully I might add… The Grand Cafe in Morristown serves, quite possibly the best Bloody Mary I’ve ever enjoyed in a bar (or restaurant for that matter…) 

(It’s rolled, never shaken) and their brilliant Irish Coffee is every bit Ireland as anything in the world.

The BEST is found here at the Grand Cafe.

Jockey Hollow…  again.  Chris James at the helm.  Need I say more?  Just go and pour yourself into a seat at the bar.

SM23For a slice of NYC with all the thumping but not the bumping, try this very sophisticated boite located within the Headquarters Plaza building.  Classic cocktails, made with the best ingredients possible are the framework for SM23.  Just go- and bring an appetite for some of the best Indian and Asian food around, save room for dessert!!!

End of ElmI’ve had good cocktails here.  While not a Craft Cocktail lounge, the emphasis is on their food at EOE…  They do mix some fine drinks without much fluff.   I like it and if you find their prices too rich for your pocket, you can always get a submarine sandwich at Long John’s next door for your lunch with some for the next day!

 

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Dive Bars and just some really lousy bars.   Morristown is full of them.  They say that Morristown is the Hoboken of the western part of the state.  I say the Morristown-Town Fathers got what they deserved with the quality of bars that exist by the historic Green.  And don’t even get me started on the interior architecture of these places.. Isn’t Morristown a Colonial town?

With a major focus of my career for drinking fewer drinks and drinking better when you do drink…  well, it is an embarrassment, at least for myself as someone who takes great pride in the cocktail movement, to even try to have a conversation about why a margarita should not have both cheap triple sec and bottled sour mix.   Morristown dive bars and some of the ones that surround the Green, like many other places around the country serve no better than the worst drink you’ve ever had- made to appear to be the best drink that you’ve ever had- but as I like to say, the ice gives it all away.

Find me a place with good ice and I’ll tell everyone.  If you use bar ice?  Well for me at least, it’s all bad things.  And if you are making your Margarita cocktails with triple sec and bottled sour mix- well, it should be a crime.

These places don’t try to make anything that even closely resembles a craft cocktail- and thus they do not get it.  But they do serve the multitudes of people who flood to Morristown to get as smashed as possible.  It’s a fact of life- like or not.

IMG_2850awful… beer and shots made with cheap ingredients.  Play hopscotch  outside at night, or on a weekend with what is sometimes left on the sidewalk by over-indulgence’s.

It’s a very young set here.  No soft jazz or Sinatra on the stereo, so don’t ask.  A good place to stay well clear of in my opinion. 

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Last National Rum Day I went into the Grasshopper and I asked them which cocktail they were making to celebrate this National Holiday… They replied Malibu and Coke.   That’s just wrong.  And it was served with a slice of lime that dated to the Truman Administration.  Next…

Even the Guinness is too cold.

Shall I go on?

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The Iron Bar…  It’s cheap and tawdry.  From the low quality, bottled sour mix they use to fill out most every mixed drink, to the base spirits made in chemical factories, if you like your flavored vodka in candy varieties like whipped cream and chocolate pudding, you’ll love it here.  And their Bloody Mary is shaken.  FAIL….

Definitely a younger crowd.

The Office- located next door tries really hard.  I do love their beer list, but their cocktail list needs much refinement and balance to be included on the list of who gets it in Morristown…. the answer is- very few.  Urban Table tries hard too… Without much luck. 

Roots is not a place for a Craft Cocktail.  A Rob Roy might work in a pinch or a decent Manhattan, but these prices?  

This is not New York, so please, use better Vermouth in that well north of fifteen dollar drink.   Again.. Just my opinion. 

 

One of the great liquor and wine stores in Morristown is Cambridge Wines on Morris Street.  They have one of the best selections of whiskey around.  AND they have sold copies of my books!  A win/win!

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The Grapeful Palate, located up on South Street has a very carefully curated selection of wines, beers and spirits.  I love their attention to the customer and the calming effects of the Grateful Dead on the stereo system, making this a perfect destination for all your desires in the liquor world.

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Book # 1

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Book #2

9781592336753

Book # 3

Bitters and Shrub Syrup Cocktails – Restorative Vintage Cocktails, Mocktails, and Elixirs

To purchase this book…

So simple to create at home, Bitters and Shrub Syrups will add an incredible depth of flavor to any beverage.

9781592336753Historically, cocktail bitters, drinking vinegars, and even infused syrups were originally used for curing sickness with high concentrations of beneficial (healing) herbs and flowers. The slight alcohol base of bitters kept the often-fragile ingredients from rotting in the age before refrigeration. Bitters in the modern cocktail bar are embraced as concentrated and sophisticated flavor agents, although they are still used in holistic healing by herbalists. Shrubs add both tart and sweet notes to a craft cocktail or mocktail. They sate your hunger and quench your thirst, while stimulating digestion and good health of the gut.

The Cocktail Whisperer, Warren Bobrow, has been using bitters and shrubs in his quest for added zest in many of his craft cocktails, adding depth and mystery to a generic mixed drink.

Bitters and Shrub Syrup Cocktails will send your taste buds back in time with 75 traditional and newly-created recipes for medicinally-themed drinks. Learn the fascinating history of apothecary bitters, healing herbs, flowers, fruits, vegetables, and vinegars that are making a comeback in cocktail and non-alcoholic recipes. If you love vintage cocktails, you’ll surely enjoy this guide to mixing delicious elixirs.