Champagne Cocktail

9 O’clock New Year
I notice that I’m not a big New Year’s Eve party kind of gal anymore. Sure I like a good party as much as the next person, but there is something about New Year’s Eve that turns me off more and more as I get older. (Older being the key word in this statement.)

That said, I did throw some epic New Year’s parties in my youth. You know the parties I mean… bodies strewn over the furniture the next morning, car in the pool, dog on the roof, and conspiratorial smiles every time the subject comes up among your friends.

This year, I will be lucky if I am awake to ring in the New Year on the East Coast. Sad I know, but it’s been a busy holiday season, and I’m too pooped to party. Throw in a nasty cold that came in my stocking (Thank you, Santa.), and my excitement for New Year’s Eve can best be described as lukewarm.

I will at least attempt celebrating with one of these. A token acknowledgment, but there is still enough of the twenty-something partyer in me that I can’t just let it go altogether.

Happy New Year!

Champagne Cocktail Recipe
Adapted from Epicurious Read more…

Irish Coffee

Irish CoffeeChristmas Cheer

I have always wanted to be one of those people who doesn’t stress out around the holidays. Visions of me sitting in front of the fire wearing velvet and sipping egg nog while I gaze contentedly at the wrapped presents under the tree have taunted me for years. And, alas, this year was no different.

It started out well. By December 13, I pretty much had all of the presents wrapped and ready to go with only a few stragglers. It was an incredible feeling but I wasn’t sure what to do with my time, which is always dangerous. (This is when the dreaded impulse buys occur…the “Just one more little one” syndrome.) Things were going so well that I tempted fate by thinking to myself that this had been the easiest Christmas ever. I should have known better.

First our TV blew up, which is bad enough in itself, but when the kids are home on winter break it’s disastrous. So we braved Best Buy on the Sunday before Christmas. This is not an activity for the faint of heart. I had moments when I thought I had been dropped in the middle of the Hunger Games.

And then, we found out the dog has an infection. Awesome. Not only does the dog feel horrible (which makes the rest  us feel horrible for her,) but we have to follow her around with paper towels. Sigh.

So forget it. I accept defeat. I will no longer seek Yuletide perfection, for it is obviously unattainable. Instead I will just sit back and revel in the insanity and drink 5 or 10 of these.

Irish Coffee Read more…

Artisan Bourbons

BourbonThis American spirit brings to mind our Southern states—although it can technically be distilled anywhere in the U.S. In recent years, small craft distillers have turned their attention to bourbon, and the results are tasty. Here are four staff favorites, Read more…

Margarita La Reina Cocktail Recipe

MargaritaA cocktail fit for a queen!
This recipe is adapted from a Margarita La Reina served at Dona Tomas Restaurant in Oakland. It is perfect served with Mexican food!

Margarita La Reina
Yields 1 serving

Coarse salt
4 tablespoons simple syrup
Juice of 2 medium limes
5 counts silver tequila
2 counts Cointreau liqueur
1 lime slice for garnish

Salt the rim of a chilled margarita glass. In a pint glass filled with cubed ice, combine the syrup, lime juice, tequila, and Cointreau. Cover with a bar shaker and shake vigorously for 5 seconds. Strain into the prepared glass. Garnish with the lime wedge and enjoy.

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