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It’s been awfully quiet here…

It’s been a few weeks since my last post here, and I apologize for the lack of new content.  I owe you all the next in the Essentials series, the entry on liqueurs, and I’ve actually slated some time this weekend to work on that post.  I think some of the delay can be chalked up to how much of a task getting the essential liquors post put together was, at least getting it to a point where I was happy with it.  That said, I won’t keep you waiting too much longer.

It’s also been quiet as I’ve been on a bit of beer kick lately, and while I’m nearly as passionate about beers as I am cocktails, that’s not what this blog is about.  I promise, I’ll get back to drinking hard liquor as soon as possible, but they tend to frown on doing so here at the office.

In the past weeks I have had a couple opportunities to share some of my creations with friends as various gatherings.  I told myself that I would make sure to take pictures, but between mixing drinks and trying to get some socializing in, I failed to do so.  I’m always excited and more than a little nervous when I make any of my original recipes for people for the first time.  I know that I like the drink, but everyone has a different palate and different preferences, and what may be a hit in my mind is too bitter, or too sweet, or too complicated for someone else.  Luckily, I have some very supportive friends who have been more than happy to indulge me and try some of my drinks, and so far they seemed to have been well received.  Recently, I made a few Jack Rackhams, The Isis, and Sioux City Coolers for some friends who were kind enough to have me and my darling wife over, as well as some of the other guests.  They all seemed to be well liked, with the Jack Rackham being the surprise favorite of the night.  I’m not much of a rum drinker these days, but I was happy to find that this one found favor both amongst avowed rum fans and those that don’t typically drink the spirit, which is great measure of success for me.

At another gathering, I shared around the Sioux City Cooler I had made for myself (as this has quickly become one of my favorite hot weather drinks), and got some good reactions there as well.  That night, the best was getting to make The Preacher for a friend whose character is the namesake and inspiration for that particular cocktail.  Big smile, followed quickly by a second belt from his glass was a hugely satisfying validation.

Finally, I’ve owed another friend a tastes of a couple drinks I wasn’t able to make her at the first gathering, and was able to make good on that promise a couple weeks ago with The Briarpatch, which seemed to be right up her alley.

That’s one of my favorite things about making drinks for people; trying to figure out, based on what I know about them, something that they will like, as well as something that I think speaks to them, or of them.  It’s a funny little esoteric thought, I suppose, being able to capture a personality in a drink, but it’s immensely fulfilling when it works out.  It’s also very nerve-wracking when I can’t work it out, but then, those experiences help me for the next try.

In a couple of weeks, I’ll be at Dragon*Con, a yearly tradition for me for the last 19 years.  I’ve missed a couple years in that time, regrettably, but I always look forward to the Con, and spending several days geeking out, seeing good friends, from across the country, and the world, at this point.  Dragon*Con is also a time where the drinks run freely, and so I’m getting ready to make the choices of what I’ll be bringing for my personal bar.  Last year saw me bringing entirely too many bottles; a couple cases of various spirits in addition to a cooler full as well, as I was making a dozen or so new recipes for signature drinks for a group of friends.  This year, I’ll be reeling things in a bit, though I’ll still no doubt end up bringing more than I’m anticipating right now.  Perhaps, you’ll see some shots here of some Experiments from the Bar in the wild, but we shall see…