Friday, August 27, 2010

What We're Drinking: Your Last Summer Cocktail - The Kentucky Buck

Celebrating Summer with the Kentucky Buck
Erick Castro is the one of the mixology talents behind the success at the renown Rickhouse in San Francisco. His innovative cocktails that emphasized "vintage minimalism" have not only made the bar a drinks destination but vaulted him to the world of brand ambassador for Pernod Ricard USA. One of his creations, the Kentucky Buck makes the list of our summer favorites. The buck is as vintage as it gets and used to be a country club favorite in the first half of the 20th Century.

At it's core, Castro's formula is a whiskey buck with muddled strawberry but that is just the foundation. Typically, a Buck's frizzante is provided by ginger ale, but Castro amps up the flavor profile and substitutes ginger beer. This results in a well balanced thirst quencher with a bite. He keeps the Buck's citrus attribute by using lemon juice (some also use lime) but adds Angostura bitters and simple syrup to balance the ginger beer. We suggest using Reed's Extra Ginger Brew - All Natural Jamaican Style Ginger Beer and a Bourbon that can stand up to the spice, Castro uses the 90 proof Bulleit Bourbon.
I would also like to add that we are not the only ones on the Kentucky Buck train, premier cocktail lounges across the country are adding this drink to their menu.  In fact, we suggest you roll one immediately because Labor Day is coming and the game changes after that!
Kentucky Buck
by Erick Castro

2 oz Bulleit Bourbon
3/4 oz Fresh Lemon Juice

3/4 oz Simple Syrup
1 medium-sized ripe strawberry
2 Dashes Angostura Bitters

Ginger Beer

Place juice and strawberry into tin and muddle thoroughly. Add remaining ingredients into tin along with ice and shake vigorously. Strain over ice into a Collins glass and top with ginger beer. Garnish with finely-sliced strawberry and lemon wheel.

Where to get it: Rickhouse - 246 Kearny Street, San Francisco, CA 94108 and soon - a cocktail lounge near you!

- Fredo

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Angolo di Modo: Men's Autumn Essentials

Autumn is the Grand Prix of Men's haberdashery. The layering, the fabrics, and the patterns are a veritable palette as diverse and colorful as the falling leaves. The season is by far our favorite. It is a time of year where the slight chill in the air can only be balanced by a rich tweed, plaid, corduroy, cashmere, wool, or flannel. In that vein, Loungerati's dapper gents are sharing their essentials for this Fall; this is our wish list and in keeping with the times, we present a high end and more recession friendly alternative.

Fredo suggests:

Alden Black Suede Chukka Boots
Black Suede Chukka boots by Alden available at Epaulet. This is a pricey pair of footwear but well worth the investment. The "flex-welt" leather sole is bathed in oil to make it exceptionally supple - but just as durable as any other solid leather sole. The suede chukka has a timeless style and the craftsmanship of venerable Charles H. Alden shoe company is renown. $450.00

Epaulet - 231 Smith Street, Brooklyn, NY 11231 (718-522-3800)

Affordable Alternative: Clarks Orignals black suede desert boots ($105) available at Grahame Fowler at 138 West 10th Street. New York, NY 10014

The Grey Herringbone Tweed Blazer is standard Autumn attire. Dressed up or dressed down, with dark indigo jeans, the tweed blazer is synonymous with the season. Stick with a single breasted, single or two button version. Brooks Brothers has luxurious lambswool "Black and White" tweed jacket has just the right lining to serve as an outdoor jacket yet versatile enough to wear indoors. $398.

Affordable alternative: J.Crew's Whitman Ludlow Collection has a version that brings together the modern, yet classic style of Italian tailoring at the good value of $265.

Eff suggests:

The Peacoat: Originally worn by sailors of various European Navies, the Peacoat exudes confidence and, at once, autumnal practicality. Flip up the collar for that Steve McQueen cool.

Dunhill Peacoat
Dunhill - $1,695 Hand-finished seam, horn buttons, knitted waffle collar for a modern touch. Navy blue is the way to go.
Affordable Alternative: Banana Republic - $225 - cotton/wool blend, peaked lapels, 6 buttons, try it in grey.

The Orange V-Neck cashmere sweater: Cashmere is in a league of its own when it comes to warmth, luxury, and tactile reward. Its said that orange cashmere, peeking out from under a blazer, beckons the leaves to fall. 

If money is no object, Eff suggests the quality and design of the sweater by the iconic brand Hermes - $1,075.
Affordable Alternative: For the rest of us, hit a forward trending chain like Gant or  J. Crew - $188

Enjoy the Autumn in style ... you owe it to yourself!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Destinations: Jazz Age Lawn Party August 28th and 29th

The party goers are vintage head to toe


AUGUST 28th & 29th 2010
11:00 am to 6:00 pm
Admission $7/advance, $10/door (Children Under 7 Free)

Michael Arenella and His Dreamland Orchestra invites you to join us on this hidden gem just off the southeastern tip of Manhattan, nestled in the heart of majestic New York Harbor.

Under a shady grove of centuries-old trees, caressed by fresh sea air, a sprawling green surrounded by historic officers' quarters and 18th century naval ramparts becomes the setting for a true Gatsby affair. A recession-friendly $7 advance admission gives you access to one of the Summers' most magnificent celebrations.

Widely anticipated by flappers, sporting gents and tiny tots alike, this event has been featured and reviewed consistently by The New York Times, who selected the Jazz Age Lawn Party as one of the most memorable parties of 2009.

A wide array of music, food & drink, and activities are open for all ages to enjoy:
*Special guests Drew Nugent & the Midnight Society.
*A delightful variety of refreshing cocktails will be served by St-Germain Elderflower Liqueur and beer provided by Brooklyn Brewery.
*Picknicking welcomed and encouraged!
*Homemade barbeque, sandwiches, salads and more will be for sale. Vegetarian dishes available.
*Soda, juice, water, and other beverages available.
*Bake Sale!
*Authenitc '78 records from the 1920s played on a phonograph provided by Michael Cumella of WFMU's Antique Phonograph Music Program.
*Charleston lessons by dance legend Roddy Caravella
*1920s Motorcar Exhibition - take a spin around the island in a genuine rumbleseat; hold on to your hat!
*Vintage clothing dealers and boutique milliners Odd Twin, Zelda Magazine, Peter Lloyd Greer Custom Clothes, and more! - They will all be peddling wares, so be sure to tuck some cash in your garter.
*Live dance performances
*Bathing Beauties & Beaus Promenade
*Tug O' War
*Parade Of Hats
*Pie Recipe Contest -- If you'd like to sign up for the pie contest, you must pre-register by emailing Sarah Liston at Bakers can sign up until midnight Fri. July 16th.

**The first 250 people to order advance tickets at get a free drink ticket!

Michael Arenella

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Angolo di Modo: Cocktails at Tiffany - Who Knew?

Effervescent lounging at Tiffany & Co. Private Cocktail Party
His invite to me read, “Cocktails at Tiffany  tomorrow night?” “Cocktails can be had at Tiffany and Co.?”, I replied. “Who knew!?!” 

Our man about town, Eff, apparently knows how to make such arrangements. The Sicilian dandy recently had a diamond of a time making the scene at the iconic Tiffany and Co. on tony Fifth Avenue. The event was thrown for some of the premier jewelers' best customers and celebrities as show of appreciation for continued business. Clearly' Eff's moglia is making out like a bandit.

From the moment one walked into the flagship store, which opened in 1940, it was red carpet treatment reminiscent of a Gatsby cocktail party. For starters, the Taittinger "Le Francaise" Brut Champagne flowed (in Tiffany crystal, natch) like a river! There were also passed canapes and hors d'oeuvres to wet the appetite. Once the first class crowd was properly buzzed, the white glove service bar started pouring top shelf scotch, Johnnie Walker Blue Label ,no less.  
Eff towering over LA Laker Lamar Odom

Before too long Eff was hamming it up with none-other-than a champion Los Angeles Laker basketball forward Lamar Odom. Soon Eff and Mr. Odom, who hails from South Jamaica, Queens, were checking out Tahitian pearls for their better halves. Eff even rode on Mr. Odom’s shoulders a near 7 feet up in the air after daring him (there’s witnesses). Shenanigans continued until Tiffany security intervened (very discreetly, I might add!). Blame it on bubbly and blue.

After the initial reception, the crowd was treated to a viewing of the famed Tiffany Diamond. Then Lamar introduced Eff to NBA Commissioner David Stern, the duo (and a sauced up Eff) then posed on the runway outside for a near 500 tourists, even signing a few autographs for some budding Holly Golightlys. As the event was winding down, Tiffany & Co. was proud to report that no guests had absconded with any of their prized baubles. However, the Johnny Walker Blue, and our Lounge Essentials contributor were no where to be found.

Mangari, Eff! Cocktails at Tiffany: a “brilliant” new Loungerati tradition.

PS: Be sure to check out our (first ever) Loungerati iMovie account of the evening: 

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Destinations: Speakeasy at 1220 Fifth Avenue Wed Aug 4th

The skinny: 
Our friends at Club Wit's End are teaming with the Museum of the City of New York to present the "Speakeasy at 1220 Fifth Avenue" from 6 until 9pm. Featuring Michael Arenella and His Dreamland Orchestra. Hot jazz! Vintage Cocktails! Dancing!  

The featured cocktail is the:
Japanese Cocktail:
2 oz Cognac
1/2 Orgeat syrup
3 dashes of Angostura bitters

Stir ingredients well with cracked ice, then strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with a twist of lemon peel.
Spirits impresario David Wondrich calls it “Perhaps the only drink in Jerry Thomas’s "How to Mix Drinks" actually invented by him.” It’s the Japanese Cocktail, and they will be serving it to coincide with the newest museum exhibit.

The museum exhibit, “Samurai in New York,” is about the Japanese delegation to the United States in 1860, and the Japanese Cocktail was actually invented to commemorate the delegation's visit to New York City (they stayed in hotel not far from Jerry Thomas’ bar on Broadway).

Say "Wit's End" sent you, you will get in for only ten dollars and admission will include a free drink ticket. 

My word not good enough for youse? Well, Bloomberg also suggests this as a great Wednesday night Destination:

 "Tonight at the Speakeasy at 1220 Fifth Ave, say "Wit's End" sent you and get in for only $10 (includes a free cocktail)!"
Click here for more information.
MCNY (1220 Fifth Avenue, NYC, NY)

Sunday, August 1, 2010

What We're Drinking: The Fredo at Painkiller

The Fredo does not get passed over at Painkiller Tiki Bar
Some people say the Banana Daiquiri was invented in Cuba in the late 1800s, while others claim that British restaurateur Conrad Graves debuted the cocktail at his Mountain Top bar in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, during the 1950s. The origins are as cloudy as the drink but Mountain Top bar claims to have served 6 million of them throughout the years! So they win in my book.

The popularity of this frozen daiquiri surged in the 1980s and became associated with the veritable vortex of poorly made uber sweet frozen daiquiris that flowed from slushy machines at faux tropical bars. Honestly, I would never even think of ordering one if it was not for the talented bar team at Painkiller Tiki Bar in New York City. Boccato, Gonzalez, and company have resurrected this once classy refreshing go-to-cocktail for the holiday in Havana set and introduced it to a brand new generation of tipplers. Please note - when ordering the  Banana Daiquiri at PK, simply ask for "The Fredo".

Why The Fredo? No, it is not a homage to your dashing correspondant (I wish)! It is named after Fredo Corleone's favorite drink during the Cuba scenes in Godfather Part II. Painkiller bartender Enzo Lim was kind enough to share the recipe for this new favorite.
The Fredo:

3/4 oz lime juice

1 oz demerara syrup

1 1/2 oz white rum

Half or third of a banana

1 heaping scoop of cracked ice

Combine ingredients in blender. Blend. Serve in a chilled glass. Garnish with a banana segment speared with an umbrella.
Most recipes on the web call for triple sec or curacao and sugar to be added - we disagree. This classic simple version at PK gets the balance right.  The flavor of the banana only enhances the smoothness of The Fredo.  It is similar to a piña colada in consistency and goes down just as easy. Don't get passed over - order one next time you are at Painkiller.

- Fredo