After spending a great Christmas at home, gorging on seafood and Tom & Jerry, and wondering if the snow was ever going to stop, I roused myself this morning to go online and do a little self promotion. While things have been pretty quiet here on the blog, I’ve been extremely busy this past month, and some of the projects I’ve been working on are now coming out.
First, the new: I’ve got a piece posted on the New York Times‘ opinion blog, Proof. The blog covers “Alcohol and American Life,” and my piece, “Drinking Outside the Temple,” is a brief and personal look at the country’s cocktail landscape (be sure to check out the comments to see the kind of visceral reaction engendered by any discussion of alcohol — especially a discussion that deals with enjoying the moderate and responsible consumption of alcohol; and please, leave a comment of your own). And as happy as I am to have contributed something to this conversation, I need to offer a mea culpa to many of the country’s bartenders: as with any other time when you try to describe an entire city or region’s cocktail scene in the course of one or two sentences, I made gross generalizations, and I’m sure that there are plenty of bartenders in San Francisco, Seattle, New York and other cities who’ll take issue with the way I’ve depicted their region’s approach to drinks (or failed to depict them — as much as I’d like, there’s no way I could mention every city’s bar scene). Apologies if my comments seem to overlook or ignore your work; my intent was to paint a broad picture of the country’s cocktail patterns for those outside the mixology loop, in hopes that they might start exploring and discovering the same things I’ve come to enjoy about so many of your establishments. The tool may have been blunt, but my intent was a good one; please get in touch and let me know if you have questions, comments or rants.
UPDATE: The comments section at Proof must be experienced, if only to see the vitriol that’s laid on by self-described recovering alcoholics (who apparently have plenty of time to troll alcohol-related sites on the Internet). My favorite comment so far, though, is from someone named Tim, who if I should ever have the pleasure to meet, I’d be happy to buy a drink; read Tim’s comment here.
Second, I wrote a story on hot (boozy) drinks, “A Warming Trend in Winter,” that appears in today’s San Francisco Chronicle. Thanks to Craig Lee, the paper’s photographer, for getting such a cool shot of a Bishop with a flaming clove-studded orange shell in the serving ladle.
Third, and I’m running a bit late on this, but last Friday a story I wrote on unconventional American whiskies came out in the Chronicle; read the story here: “Newfangled American Whiskies go beyond rye, bourbon.”
Fourth, and I’m placing this down the list because I haven’t even seen the magazine yet (the mail truck is probably stuck at the bottom of the hill — thanks, Seattle, for your near-total inability to clear the city’s streets), I have a short article on Cherry Heering in the January issue of Imbibe. Article, sans recipes, is here: “Cherry Crush“.
Apologies for the extended silence here at the blog, but as you can see, I’ve been really freakin’ busy. Hopefully things will even out in the New Year, but in the meantime, happy holidays to all–