holiday

A year later…

Well, it’s been just over a year since I made my last blog post, where I talked about my personal favorite recipes for eggnog.  I’m indulging in a cup of said holiday cheer as I type this, in honor of that, and because ‘tis the season, after all.

I have all sorts of excuses for why I haven’t written here in so long; craziness at work as we went through a reorg, house hunting and moving, more craziness at work as I took over a new team, and another reorg.  Really though, it just comes down to losing steam, and having a hard time building it back up.  No promises that this won’t just be a false restart, but I’ll be aiming to post at least monthly here.

 

Despite my silence here for the last year, I’ve kept whipping up new cocktails, and enjoying old favorites.  Last January I put together a collection of eight original cocktails based on various nations for an in-play party hosted by one of the LARPs I am involved in, and offered flights for those that wanted to sample all eight but still be able to walk.  They all seemed to be a hit, as I spent the entire event frantically working behind the bar, with no time to even pour myself something until half way through the event.  I failed to get any photos, so I’ll be making and shooting those as part of the planned content for the coming year.

 

At another LARP related event during the summer, I was asked to provide recipes for some of my greatest hits, so that they could be served at a catered event.  I have to say, it was a bit of surreal experience seeing the bar staff making my drinks, but it was incredibly satisfying.  Some of the drinks were from the new set of eight, but one was my old favorite, the Epi, which as expected was a big hit and the first drink we had to 86 when we ran out of the ingredients.

 

As I mentioned earlier, the year has had some pretty crazy moments, the biggest of which was when my wife and I purchased our first house together.  We moved in a little over a month ago, and I’ve just now gotten my bar unpacked beyond the couple random bottles I pulled out along the ways for much needed post moving cocktails.  Our house is wonderful, and just about perfect for us, though I will continue to lament that at some point in the past the previous owners tore out a wetbar original to the late 70’s home and replaced it with a giant walk in cedar closet off the living room.  I mean, don’t get me wrong, the extra storage is great, but I could have had a wet bar!

 
I hope that all of you out there have had a good year, and are enjoying the holidays, and that you’re doing so with a nice cup of cheer.  I hope that you’ll be joining me here for a new year of recipes, musings, and fun.  Now, I’m off to enjoy this drink and settle in by the fire.

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Eggnog

Yesterday, we talked a little bit about the history of eggnog, as well as the ingredients and associated debates with how to make a quality eggnog.  Whether you’re a British brandy purist, a colonial rum lover, or a bourbon boasting American, eggnog is wonderful treat, especially this time of year.  So, time to gather up some ingredients and whip up some of this rich and creamy beverage, either in a punch bowl or a mug for yourself.

eggnog ingredients

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Holiday cheer: a bit of history about eggnog

Here we are, a few days from the winter solstice, getting near the close of the year, and in the midst of the holiday season.  I have always loved the winter, and having the excuse of the holidays to spend some quality time with my family and friends.  Recently, at a holiday party and in various conversations, the topic of what is probably the most iconic of holiday libations, eggnog, has come up a few times.  Questions of what spirit to use, homemade versus store-bought, and how to enjoy this creamy punch without making a punchbowl’s worth, all have come up, and with some decidedly varied opinions.  So, what better than to weigh in with my opinions here, for all to see.

I have a great fondness for a good cup of eggnog, though that’s often hard to come by in my experience.  While it may not be a drink for everyone, I think that more people would enjoy this drink that dates back to the mid 18th century if they were exposed to a good, homemade batch, and steered clear of the gloopy store-bought premade varieties.

If nothing else, I hope that this post gets more people to put down the carton or plastic jug of mass produced concoctions that start flooding the grocery store shelves this time of year.  Making a delicious, quality eggnog doesn’t have to be daunting.  Whether you’re making a big batch for a party, or want to enjoy a single cup at home by the fire on your own, let’s look at a bit of the history of this wonderful drink, and talk about the ingredients, and the debate surrounding some of them. (more…)