Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Punch, Flair and Bartender Poets

Walter Dendy Sadler's Punch Bowl They got 18th Century Flair!

As my body and mind fought each other for rest in bed this morning, I had visions of the punch I am going to create for The Dizzy Fizz Tastemaker's Punch at the Manhattan Cocktail Classic next week. I am trying to create a Hudson Valley punch using ingredients dear to me and my home region. My base is Apple Vodka from Tuthilltown and wild mountain thyme infused maple syrup. Though not really in season in the spring, I love apple cider so I might want to incorporate that and the fresh berries of spring and summer that we would pick on Greigs Berry farm in Red Hook. Blackberries, raspberries and strawberries were always so sweet when then can be popped in the mouth still warm from the sun. And on the Mountain top, it was always a race to get to the berries before the bears. Parents attach bells to their children when the go berry picking to keep from surprising the lumbering black bears that come down from the mountain. Mountain Jam Punch...does that have a nice ring to it? I need a good name. Mountain Jam is also the big music festival that happens at Hunter Mountain every year.

Speaking of the Mountain Jam, my friend Katy goes every year and she sent me this article from the Atlantic today about the origins of the cocktail. While it is generally accepted that American bartender Jerry Thomas created the cocktail with his 1862 bartender's manual publication, the British were making punch bowls and spirit concoctions long before.

But at least we invented Flair. Take it away Tom.

Hey...At least Tom and Bryan actually pour some alcohol out:

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