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Gallery: Celebrate National Bourbon Heritage Month with These 6 Expert Recipes

Gallery: Celebrate National Bourbon Heritage Month with These 6 Expert Recipes


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Apple Press

Apples are in season every fall when the desire for richer cocktails strikes again. This cocktail, created by Jeremy Allen, bartender at MiniBar in Los Angeles, combines apple cider and bourbon, which is a classic combination. Then, Allen adds apple cider vinegar, to cut a bit of sweetness.

African Queen

Created by Ruben Pasqual, bartender at Crossings Restaurant in South Pasadena, this cocktail combines the classic American spirit with imported flavors like tamarind and passion fruit. The coupe glass adds an elegant touch.

Los Angeles Sour

This bourbon cocktail, created by Alex Barbatsis, bar director at Good Housekeeping in Los Angeles, is a frothy delicious variation. A bit sweet, a bit savory and oh-so fragrant.

Call Me Snake

Bourbon is often a warming campfire spirit, so it's fitting that this recipe incorporates smoke. Sarah Mengoni, lead bartender at Double Take in Los Angeles, created this cocktail and explains how her bar gets that smoky reveal: "We use a literal ‘smoking gun’ to make this cocktail. It has a bowl that we load with cedar chips. We flip a switch on the gun that sucks air through the bowl then pushes it out of a tube. Once the switch is on, we use a lighter to start the cedar burning, and as soon as it starts coming out of the tube, we turn off the gun and remove the hose from glass while simultaneously covering the glass to keep the smoke in. The cover we use is a coaster that looks like a New York City manhole cover, a reference to the movie Escape from NY that inspired the cocktail’s name. The short amount of time that it takes to carry the drink to the guest is enough time for the flavor of the smoke to really become integrated with the spirits, providing a smoky flavor with every sip.”

Cider Lowball

This recipe combines bourbon with the other flavor of fall: apples. A classic combination that just tastes like autumn. This variation was created by Kevin Felker, beverage director, Water Grill, Downtown Los Angeles.

Nineteeth Century

The standard at-home bar probably doesn't have some of these ingredients but that means this is the perfect excuse to expand your collection. Kevin Felker, beverage director at Meat on Ocean in Santa Monica, used an artisanal liqueur from the French Alps produced since 1875 from sweet and bitter orange peels as well as small-batch bitters.


Gallery: Celebrate National Bourbon Heritage Month with These 6 Expert Recipes - Recipes

Well, after a long summer of mixed weather, great times and plenty of new drinks, it's the month for all those in school to return to the classroom. Good luck!

Oh yeah, it's also Bourbon Heritage Month so you may find a few things bourbon as well.

We've stuffed this month full of new content, a new writer and some great new recipes. The Raven also introduces our Tales of the Cocktail swag contest where you can win a collection of stuff we picked up. Check out his article below. We hope you enjoy this month's edition.

We've also implemented a RSS feed to update you on all the latest entries to the database. You can find the page here.

Please be smart, don't drink and drive! Enjoy the following recipes in moderation and take a cab if you need one.

Hendrick's Gin - The Highland Berry

  • 1 oz. Hendrick's Gin
  • 1/2 oz. black raspberry liqueur
  • 3 oz. cranberry juice
  • 2 oz. tonic water
  • cranberries for garnish

Add Hendrick's Gin, black raspberry liqueur and cranberry juice into a shaker. Stir and shake well. Strain into cocktail glass and top with tonic water and garnish with frozen cranberries. Add ice if desire.

My friends, I have a problem. You see, a few weeks back I went to this little industry event in New Orleans called Tales of the Cocktail maybe you've heard of it (or maybe you've been living under a rock and not reading my articles). In any case, like at all great events, our contingent was able to gather a truly offensive amount of swag (which I'll thank the writers of The Office for clearing up for me: Stuff We All Get!) Herein lies my problem: Dan says I've got to give some of it away. Now, I worked hard to collect this stuff, so I'm not just going to give it away. "Worked hard?" I hear you cry. "What was so hard about collect free stuff?" Just ask my liver.

As it turns out, I've got a contest I've been looking to run for a few months now that was just begging for a prize. Being the intelligent person I am, I put two and two together and got five. well o.k., 25 (work with me here.) Have I piqued your interest? O.k. then, here it goes:

The Raven is throwing a party and needs tunes to keep it going. He is looking for the playlist to beat all playlists. Of course, there are a few restrictions to what he'll play.

  • Each playlist must be exactly 25 songs.
  • This is a drinking song playlist (and a contest on a cocktail site!) All songs must deal with alcohol, drinking, or be traditionally recognized as a drinking song.
  • No more than 7 songs may be from the same genre, and no more than 10 from the same decade.
  • The Raven is eclectic. A great playlist for him will span over 100 years.
  • Playlist order matters! Be sure to give us an explanation and walk us through your playlist.

One entry per person, so get it right the first time. The Raven and Dan (and possibly a few others) will make the final decision as to the winner. Points will be given for creative playlists that have a natural progression, as well as heterogeneity. Be prepared to explain a strange song pick if we don't get it, and you can't justify it, you lose points. Also, classics are called such because they are recognized as great you can use them, but if we get two people with matching lists, you're both disqualified.

All entries must be submitted here by October 18th at midnight. Depending on the number of entries, we will try to have the results by the October newsletter. So what are the prizes?

Lot's of great stuff right? Well, even if you can't tell what it all is, it's still lots of great stuff. There may be more depending on where you are and what other goodies we manage to acquire between now and then. There may even be a second prize, if we really feel that it is deserved.

What? You're still here? The contest wasn't enough for you? You want content as well? You know, I've got a life too! Oh, o.k., I guess I can dig something up. Did'ja hear the news about Budweiser? Bought by the Belgians? Crazy. we'll have to see where that goes.

While out at ToC, I had the chance to try some cachaca (pronounced ka-sha-sa). For those unfamiliar, as I was, cachaca is a type of rum made in Brazil. It differs from straight rum in that the liquor is made entirely from the juice of the crushed sugar cane, and not from any remnant thereof. Having just been introduced to it, I can't claim to know the finer points, but the bottle I got from the fine folks at Sagatiba certainly showed some promise.

(As an aside, I just want everyone to know that I am not 'phoning this in'. It is a little bit after 10 in the morning and I've just poured myself two shots, one of Sagatiba and one of Bacardi in an effort to give you the best possible analysis. I hope you appreciate the sacrifices I make for you.)

Comparably, the two bottles are matched in proof, which is handy in doing comparisons (and which would completely devalue any comparison I'd make otherwise.) The Sagatiba is definitely smoother, with a cleaner taste than the Bacardi, which is expected from any single-ingredient bottle. Of note, the Sagatiba also has a much sweeter bouquet.

I've only had the chance to make one cocktail with the Sagatiba, kind of a Brazilian mojito, which I snagged from an episode of Kevin Brauch's Thirsty Traveler. It was, in a word, delightful. I'll get around to making more, but with work and school starting (MBA here I come! Donations are being accepted!), it might be a little while before I can sit down to a tasting session.

Anyway, it is now time that I get on with life, one can only live the dream of 'professional booze columnist' for so long. Stay cool out there, and send in your playlists!

J.T. "Raven" Centonze has been a long time student of the art of alcohol. Initially interested in keeping conversation at parties, his love for alcohol grew to an obsession in college. In between his real job of running a college bookstore or two, he is the part owner/operator of his own winery. He bartends at private parties which allows him the innovation of many new, unique drinks.

The Raven now has his own e-mail address at the BarNoneDrinks. Please send all questions, comments, and suggestions related "The Raven's Caw" to [email protected]. Also accepted at this address are job offers, death threats, marriage proposals, offers to enlarge certain parts of my anatomy, awards nominations, petitions for absolution and anything else The Raven might need to know about.

Many drink recipes call for fruit juice. While some might find that adding bottled or canned fruit juice works just fine, others swear that using fresh fruit juice makes all the difference between an ok drink and one that is outstanding.

You probably think that juicing fruits is a bit of a hassle. And, sure, it does take a little more time that opening a bottle or popping the top of a can. But, once you get the hang of it, you'll realize that it isn't as hard as you thought, and that the benefits are amazing.

Before you can even think about squeezing your own juice, you need to invest in a juicer. There are several types to choose from. One of the most basic juicers is the manual press variety. This type of juicer is maneuvered by hand and is ideal for soft fruits. A centrifugal juicer shreds or grates the fruits and then spins it to release the juice. The last type of a masticating juicer. As the name suggests, a masticating juicer basically chews the fruit in order to break down its cell walls to create a high fiber juice.

Once you have selected the juicer of your choice, now you need the fruit. Be aware that you will need a fairly large amount of fruit if you want even a glass of fresh juice.

Fruits such as avocado, bananas and strawberries aren't the ideal fruits for juicing, although they do work well for blending in extra flavors. These types of fruits contain small amounts of water, so they won't yield much liquid.

When looking for an ideal fruit for juicing, you want to make sure that you choose those that contain large amounts of water. Grapes, pears, apples, peaches, grapefruit, oranges, watermelon, and cantaloupe are all fruits that will juice well and taste great. Softer fruits, such as pears and peaches will produce a thicker juice, often referred to as nectar, and some will even yield a juice that is thick. As a rule of thumb, remember that the softer a certain type of fruit is the thicker its created juice will be.

Once you have run your preferred fruit through your juicer, you may notice that it has a large amount of pulp in it. Some people prefer their juice to have contain this pulp, but others may not like their drink to contain any sort of chunks. If you are among the latter, you can remove the pulp by straining the juiced liquid through a coffee filter or cheesecloth.

Now that you know how about juicers and how to select fruits, you should also learn just how much freshly squeezed juice can benefit your health. Not only can you get your daily allowance of fruits, and often vegetables if you decide to juice them and add them to your drink, you can also add the enzymes and nutrients that you need to your diet. You will also consume a great amount of fiber that can help you to control how quickly your bloodstream absorbs sugar.

Next time you see a recipe that requires fruit juice, or you just have a hankering for a nice tall glass of your favorite juice, don't take the easy route and turn to manufactured products. Juice your own and know that you are getting exactly the taste you want, as well as the healthy benefits your body deserves.

Val, Val Val. What do we say about Val? I can say that she's been doing a bunch of work for us here at Bar None for the last few months, but most of it site related, not for our newsletter. However, I think she'll start becoming a regular feature here so we hope you enjoy her writing from some little place called Hoboken or was it Halifax? Hmm, maybe it was Hammonton. Wherever it was, she's doing a fine job and we're happy to have her aboard.

Summer Smash

  • 2 parts Absolut Citron
  • 1 part Lime And Lemongrass Cordial
  • 1 part Melon Liqueur
  • Passionfruit Juice
  • Lime
  • Mint Leaf
  • Orange

Fill a highball glass to the rim with ice cubes. Pour Absolut Citron, lime and lemongrass cordial and melon liqueur into a shaker. Fill the shaker with ice cubes and shake it until the shaker is very cold. Strain the drink into the highball glass. Top up with passionfruit juice. Garnish with a lime (peel), a mint leaf (leaf) and an orange (slice).

Anejo Kiss

  • 1 1/2 oz. Partida Anejo Tequila
  • 1 oz. Amarula Cream Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz. White Creme de Cacao

Shake and strain into a martini glass. Andre Cassagne, Ortinaque on the Mile, Miami

Like taxes and people who gasp "Oh, I can't drink that!" when you say you like tequila, dieters are inevitable. They'll sneak into your house or your bar, acting normal until you ask what they're drinking. Suddenly, the dieters are full of requests: do you have diet tonic water? How many calories are in the well rum? Can you replace the martini olives with something a little less fattening, like garlic-stuffed multivitamins?

Unfortunately, telling a dieter that he should just consume regular cocktails in moderation doesn't usually work. Thus, whether you're a professional bartender or just an accommodating host or hostess, it's important to be able to make a few diet drinks. Mostly you can get away with knowing the basics: dark beers, like stouts, generally have fewer calories than light ones like wheat beers. Any cocktail mixed with cream will have a high calorie count, and anything with fresh fruit will be relatively low. If a dieter is looking for something warm and comforting like coffee with Bailey's, he'll generally be happy with a Hot Toddy instead.

But there are also a number of substitutions you can make when crafting drinks for dieters. Consider making one of these updated cocktails:

  • Whiskey Sour. Commercial sours mix is often filled with sugar and nasty additives. Instead of using such a mix, prepare a whiskey sour by floating a single "Atomic Warhead" sour candy on top of a shot of Maker's Mark.
  • White-Chocolate Raspberry Martini. The first substitution to this drink should be obvious: replace the raspberry liqueur with delicious and healthy fresh raspberries. The texture of Godiva White Chocolate Liqueur, meanwhile, can be replaced with skim milk. Finally, replace the vodka with water. I call this "Raspberry Milk Water." If you're worried that the alcohol content is too minimal, let the mix sit behind a radiator in a plastic bag for a few weeks until it ferments.
  • Pomegranate Cosmopolitan. A great diet replacement for this cocktail can be made with new "low-cal" beers. Replace the pomegranate juice with Michelob ULTRA Pomegranate Raspberry. Replace the lime juice with Michelob ULTRA Lime Cactus. Replace the triple sec with Michelob ULTRA Tuscan Orange Grapefruit. Replace the vodka with tears. The Sex and the City girls would be proud.
  • Gin and Tonic. I call this one the "Hot Air Balloon." Mix a typical gin and tonic, but replace the tonic water with air. Then place two slices of lime with a slice of lemon in-between on the rim to mimic the pattern of a balloon.
  • Manhattan. Blindfold the dieter and drive him to Times Square. Drop the dieter off, throw a shot of whiskey in his face, and make him run home.

As you can see, accommodating the needs of a dieter can be simple. And remember: there's a good chance that the dieter is hungry and consuming drinks on an empty stomach. Just be warned.

Meg Favreau is a writer and comedian living in Philadelphia, PA. Read her blog at www.ihearyoulikestories.com.

Plymouth Gin - Midtown Mule

This is the latest cocktail creation by NYC Insieme Restaurant's bartender Marshall Altier. His most recent creation appropriately named the Midtown Mule is an ideal and refreshing way to end a hot summer day or transition to warm fall evenings. Altier plays on two very popular trends present in the cocktail world - the resurgence of gin-based cocktails as well as the use of vegetables in drinks. The all star combination makes the Midtown Mule an excellent addition to the thriving cocktail culture in New York City.

  • 1/6 cucumber (sliced into coins)
  • 2 oz. Plymouth Gin
  • 1oz. fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 oz. cardamom syrup*
  • 1/2 oz. Cointreau

Place cucumber slices and cardamon syrup in a tin and muddle to paste. Pour in remaining ingredients and shake. Pour over fresh ice in a collins glass and top with ginger beer. Garnish with a wedge of lime and 2 cucumber slices.

To produce Cardamom Syrup:

Steep 2 Tbsp. of black Cardamom pods in hot water. Combine the pods with equal parts sugar and water and steep until consistent. Cool mixture and bottle for later use.

Created by Marshall Altier at Insieme
777 7th Ave
New York, NY 10019
(212) 582-1310


Gallery: Celebrate National Bourbon Heritage Month with These 6 Expert Recipes - Recipes

Well, after a long summer of mixed weather, great times and plenty of new drinks, it's the month for all those in school to return to the classroom. Good luck!

Oh yeah, it's also Bourbon Heritage Month so you may find a few things bourbon as well.

We've stuffed this month full of new content, a new writer and some great new recipes. The Raven also introduces our Tales of the Cocktail swag contest where you can win a collection of stuff we picked up. Check out his article below. We hope you enjoy this month's edition.

We've also implemented a RSS feed to update you on all the latest entries to the database. You can find the page here.

Please be smart, don't drink and drive! Enjoy the following recipes in moderation and take a cab if you need one.

Hendrick's Gin - The Highland Berry

  • 1 oz. Hendrick's Gin
  • 1/2 oz. black raspberry liqueur
  • 3 oz. cranberry juice
  • 2 oz. tonic water
  • cranberries for garnish

Add Hendrick's Gin, black raspberry liqueur and cranberry juice into a shaker. Stir and shake well. Strain into cocktail glass and top with tonic water and garnish with frozen cranberries. Add ice if desire.

My friends, I have a problem. You see, a few weeks back I went to this little industry event in New Orleans called Tales of the Cocktail maybe you've heard of it (or maybe you've been living under a rock and not reading my articles). In any case, like at all great events, our contingent was able to gather a truly offensive amount of swag (which I'll thank the writers of The Office for clearing up for me: Stuff We All Get!) Herein lies my problem: Dan says I've got to give some of it away. Now, I worked hard to collect this stuff, so I'm not just going to give it away. "Worked hard?" I hear you cry. "What was so hard about collect free stuff?" Just ask my liver.

As it turns out, I've got a contest I've been looking to run for a few months now that was just begging for a prize. Being the intelligent person I am, I put two and two together and got five. well o.k., 25 (work with me here.) Have I piqued your interest? O.k. then, here it goes:

The Raven is throwing a party and needs tunes to keep it going. He is looking for the playlist to beat all playlists. Of course, there are a few restrictions to what he'll play.

  • Each playlist must be exactly 25 songs.
  • This is a drinking song playlist (and a contest on a cocktail site!) All songs must deal with alcohol, drinking, or be traditionally recognized as a drinking song.
  • No more than 7 songs may be from the same genre, and no more than 10 from the same decade.
  • The Raven is eclectic. A great playlist for him will span over 100 years.
  • Playlist order matters! Be sure to give us an explanation and walk us through your playlist.

One entry per person, so get it right the first time. The Raven and Dan (and possibly a few others) will make the final decision as to the winner. Points will be given for creative playlists that have a natural progression, as well as heterogeneity. Be prepared to explain a strange song pick if we don't get it, and you can't justify it, you lose points. Also, classics are called such because they are recognized as great you can use them, but if we get two people with matching lists, you're both disqualified.

All entries must be submitted here by October 18th at midnight. Depending on the number of entries, we will try to have the results by the October newsletter. So what are the prizes?

Lot's of great stuff right? Well, even if you can't tell what it all is, it's still lots of great stuff. There may be more depending on where you are and what other goodies we manage to acquire between now and then. There may even be a second prize, if we really feel that it is deserved.

What? You're still here? The contest wasn't enough for you? You want content as well? You know, I've got a life too! Oh, o.k., I guess I can dig something up. Did'ja hear the news about Budweiser? Bought by the Belgians? Crazy. we'll have to see where that goes.

While out at ToC, I had the chance to try some cachaca (pronounced ka-sha-sa). For those unfamiliar, as I was, cachaca is a type of rum made in Brazil. It differs from straight rum in that the liquor is made entirely from the juice of the crushed sugar cane, and not from any remnant thereof. Having just been introduced to it, I can't claim to know the finer points, but the bottle I got from the fine folks at Sagatiba certainly showed some promise.

(As an aside, I just want everyone to know that I am not 'phoning this in'. It is a little bit after 10 in the morning and I've just poured myself two shots, one of Sagatiba and one of Bacardi in an effort to give you the best possible analysis. I hope you appreciate the sacrifices I make for you.)

Comparably, the two bottles are matched in proof, which is handy in doing comparisons (and which would completely devalue any comparison I'd make otherwise.) The Sagatiba is definitely smoother, with a cleaner taste than the Bacardi, which is expected from any single-ingredient bottle. Of note, the Sagatiba also has a much sweeter bouquet.

I've only had the chance to make one cocktail with the Sagatiba, kind of a Brazilian mojito, which I snagged from an episode of Kevin Brauch's Thirsty Traveler. It was, in a word, delightful. I'll get around to making more, but with work and school starting (MBA here I come! Donations are being accepted!), it might be a little while before I can sit down to a tasting session.

Anyway, it is now time that I get on with life, one can only live the dream of 'professional booze columnist' for so long. Stay cool out there, and send in your playlists!

J.T. "Raven" Centonze has been a long time student of the art of alcohol. Initially interested in keeping conversation at parties, his love for alcohol grew to an obsession in college. In between his real job of running a college bookstore or two, he is the part owner/operator of his own winery. He bartends at private parties which allows him the innovation of many new, unique drinks.

The Raven now has his own e-mail address at the BarNoneDrinks. Please send all questions, comments, and suggestions related "The Raven's Caw" to [email protected]. Also accepted at this address are job offers, death threats, marriage proposals, offers to enlarge certain parts of my anatomy, awards nominations, petitions for absolution and anything else The Raven might need to know about.

Many drink recipes call for fruit juice. While some might find that adding bottled or canned fruit juice works just fine, others swear that using fresh fruit juice makes all the difference between an ok drink and one that is outstanding.

You probably think that juicing fruits is a bit of a hassle. And, sure, it does take a little more time that opening a bottle or popping the top of a can. But, once you get the hang of it, you'll realize that it isn't as hard as you thought, and that the benefits are amazing.

Before you can even think about squeezing your own juice, you need to invest in a juicer. There are several types to choose from. One of the most basic juicers is the manual press variety. This type of juicer is maneuvered by hand and is ideal for soft fruits. A centrifugal juicer shreds or grates the fruits and then spins it to release the juice. The last type of a masticating juicer. As the name suggests, a masticating juicer basically chews the fruit in order to break down its cell walls to create a high fiber juice.

Once you have selected the juicer of your choice, now you need the fruit. Be aware that you will need a fairly large amount of fruit if you want even a glass of fresh juice.

Fruits such as avocado, bananas and strawberries aren't the ideal fruits for juicing, although they do work well for blending in extra flavors. These types of fruits contain small amounts of water, so they won't yield much liquid.

When looking for an ideal fruit for juicing, you want to make sure that you choose those that contain large amounts of water. Grapes, pears, apples, peaches, grapefruit, oranges, watermelon, and cantaloupe are all fruits that will juice well and taste great. Softer fruits, such as pears and peaches will produce a thicker juice, often referred to as nectar, and some will even yield a juice that is thick. As a rule of thumb, remember that the softer a certain type of fruit is the thicker its created juice will be.

Once you have run your preferred fruit through your juicer, you may notice that it has a large amount of pulp in it. Some people prefer their juice to have contain this pulp, but others may not like their drink to contain any sort of chunks. If you are among the latter, you can remove the pulp by straining the juiced liquid through a coffee filter or cheesecloth.

Now that you know how about juicers and how to select fruits, you should also learn just how much freshly squeezed juice can benefit your health. Not only can you get your daily allowance of fruits, and often vegetables if you decide to juice them and add them to your drink, you can also add the enzymes and nutrients that you need to your diet. You will also consume a great amount of fiber that can help you to control how quickly your bloodstream absorbs sugar.

Next time you see a recipe that requires fruit juice, or you just have a hankering for a nice tall glass of your favorite juice, don't take the easy route and turn to manufactured products. Juice your own and know that you are getting exactly the taste you want, as well as the healthy benefits your body deserves.

Val, Val Val. What do we say about Val? I can say that she's been doing a bunch of work for us here at Bar None for the last few months, but most of it site related, not for our newsletter. However, I think she'll start becoming a regular feature here so we hope you enjoy her writing from some little place called Hoboken or was it Halifax? Hmm, maybe it was Hammonton. Wherever it was, she's doing a fine job and we're happy to have her aboard.

Summer Smash

  • 2 parts Absolut Citron
  • 1 part Lime And Lemongrass Cordial
  • 1 part Melon Liqueur
  • Passionfruit Juice
  • Lime
  • Mint Leaf
  • Orange

Fill a highball glass to the rim with ice cubes. Pour Absolut Citron, lime and lemongrass cordial and melon liqueur into a shaker. Fill the shaker with ice cubes and shake it until the shaker is very cold. Strain the drink into the highball glass. Top up with passionfruit juice. Garnish with a lime (peel), a mint leaf (leaf) and an orange (slice).

Anejo Kiss

  • 1 1/2 oz. Partida Anejo Tequila
  • 1 oz. Amarula Cream Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz. White Creme de Cacao

Shake and strain into a martini glass. Andre Cassagne, Ortinaque on the Mile, Miami

Like taxes and people who gasp "Oh, I can't drink that!" when you say you like tequila, dieters are inevitable. They'll sneak into your house or your bar, acting normal until you ask what they're drinking. Suddenly, the dieters are full of requests: do you have diet tonic water? How many calories are in the well rum? Can you replace the martini olives with something a little less fattening, like garlic-stuffed multivitamins?

Unfortunately, telling a dieter that he should just consume regular cocktails in moderation doesn't usually work. Thus, whether you're a professional bartender or just an accommodating host or hostess, it's important to be able to make a few diet drinks. Mostly you can get away with knowing the basics: dark beers, like stouts, generally have fewer calories than light ones like wheat beers. Any cocktail mixed with cream will have a high calorie count, and anything with fresh fruit will be relatively low. If a dieter is looking for something warm and comforting like coffee with Bailey's, he'll generally be happy with a Hot Toddy instead.

But there are also a number of substitutions you can make when crafting drinks for dieters. Consider making one of these updated cocktails:

  • Whiskey Sour. Commercial sours mix is often filled with sugar and nasty additives. Instead of using such a mix, prepare a whiskey sour by floating a single "Atomic Warhead" sour candy on top of a shot of Maker's Mark.
  • White-Chocolate Raspberry Martini. The first substitution to this drink should be obvious: replace the raspberry liqueur with delicious and healthy fresh raspberries. The texture of Godiva White Chocolate Liqueur, meanwhile, can be replaced with skim milk. Finally, replace the vodka with water. I call this "Raspberry Milk Water." If you're worried that the alcohol content is too minimal, let the mix sit behind a radiator in a plastic bag for a few weeks until it ferments.
  • Pomegranate Cosmopolitan. A great diet replacement for this cocktail can be made with new "low-cal" beers. Replace the pomegranate juice with Michelob ULTRA Pomegranate Raspberry. Replace the lime juice with Michelob ULTRA Lime Cactus. Replace the triple sec with Michelob ULTRA Tuscan Orange Grapefruit. Replace the vodka with tears. The Sex and the City girls would be proud.
  • Gin and Tonic. I call this one the "Hot Air Balloon." Mix a typical gin and tonic, but replace the tonic water with air. Then place two slices of lime with a slice of lemon in-between on the rim to mimic the pattern of a balloon.
  • Manhattan. Blindfold the dieter and drive him to Times Square. Drop the dieter off, throw a shot of whiskey in his face, and make him run home.

As you can see, accommodating the needs of a dieter can be simple. And remember: there's a good chance that the dieter is hungry and consuming drinks on an empty stomach. Just be warned.

Meg Favreau is a writer and comedian living in Philadelphia, PA. Read her blog at www.ihearyoulikestories.com.

Plymouth Gin - Midtown Mule

This is the latest cocktail creation by NYC Insieme Restaurant's bartender Marshall Altier. His most recent creation appropriately named the Midtown Mule is an ideal and refreshing way to end a hot summer day or transition to warm fall evenings. Altier plays on two very popular trends present in the cocktail world - the resurgence of gin-based cocktails as well as the use of vegetables in drinks. The all star combination makes the Midtown Mule an excellent addition to the thriving cocktail culture in New York City.

  • 1/6 cucumber (sliced into coins)
  • 2 oz. Plymouth Gin
  • 1oz. fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 oz. cardamom syrup*
  • 1/2 oz. Cointreau

Place cucumber slices and cardamon syrup in a tin and muddle to paste. Pour in remaining ingredients and shake. Pour over fresh ice in a collins glass and top with ginger beer. Garnish with a wedge of lime and 2 cucumber slices.

To produce Cardamom Syrup:

Steep 2 Tbsp. of black Cardamom pods in hot water. Combine the pods with equal parts sugar and water and steep until consistent. Cool mixture and bottle for later use.

Created by Marshall Altier at Insieme
777 7th Ave
New York, NY 10019
(212) 582-1310


Gallery: Celebrate National Bourbon Heritage Month with These 6 Expert Recipes - Recipes

Well, after a long summer of mixed weather, great times and plenty of new drinks, it's the month for all those in school to return to the classroom. Good luck!

Oh yeah, it's also Bourbon Heritage Month so you may find a few things bourbon as well.

We've stuffed this month full of new content, a new writer and some great new recipes. The Raven also introduces our Tales of the Cocktail swag contest where you can win a collection of stuff we picked up. Check out his article below. We hope you enjoy this month's edition.

We've also implemented a RSS feed to update you on all the latest entries to the database. You can find the page here.

Please be smart, don't drink and drive! Enjoy the following recipes in moderation and take a cab if you need one.

Hendrick's Gin - The Highland Berry

  • 1 oz. Hendrick's Gin
  • 1/2 oz. black raspberry liqueur
  • 3 oz. cranberry juice
  • 2 oz. tonic water
  • cranberries for garnish

Add Hendrick's Gin, black raspberry liqueur and cranberry juice into a shaker. Stir and shake well. Strain into cocktail glass and top with tonic water and garnish with frozen cranberries. Add ice if desire.

My friends, I have a problem. You see, a few weeks back I went to this little industry event in New Orleans called Tales of the Cocktail maybe you've heard of it (or maybe you've been living under a rock and not reading my articles). In any case, like at all great events, our contingent was able to gather a truly offensive amount of swag (which I'll thank the writers of The Office for clearing up for me: Stuff We All Get!) Herein lies my problem: Dan says I've got to give some of it away. Now, I worked hard to collect this stuff, so I'm not just going to give it away. "Worked hard?" I hear you cry. "What was so hard about collect free stuff?" Just ask my liver.

As it turns out, I've got a contest I've been looking to run for a few months now that was just begging for a prize. Being the intelligent person I am, I put two and two together and got five. well o.k., 25 (work with me here.) Have I piqued your interest? O.k. then, here it goes:

The Raven is throwing a party and needs tunes to keep it going. He is looking for the playlist to beat all playlists. Of course, there are a few restrictions to what he'll play.

  • Each playlist must be exactly 25 songs.
  • This is a drinking song playlist (and a contest on a cocktail site!) All songs must deal with alcohol, drinking, or be traditionally recognized as a drinking song.
  • No more than 7 songs may be from the same genre, and no more than 10 from the same decade.
  • The Raven is eclectic. A great playlist for him will span over 100 years.
  • Playlist order matters! Be sure to give us an explanation and walk us through your playlist.

One entry per person, so get it right the first time. The Raven and Dan (and possibly a few others) will make the final decision as to the winner. Points will be given for creative playlists that have a natural progression, as well as heterogeneity. Be prepared to explain a strange song pick if we don't get it, and you can't justify it, you lose points. Also, classics are called such because they are recognized as great you can use them, but if we get two people with matching lists, you're both disqualified.

All entries must be submitted here by October 18th at midnight. Depending on the number of entries, we will try to have the results by the October newsletter. So what are the prizes?

Lot's of great stuff right? Well, even if you can't tell what it all is, it's still lots of great stuff. There may be more depending on where you are and what other goodies we manage to acquire between now and then. There may even be a second prize, if we really feel that it is deserved.

What? You're still here? The contest wasn't enough for you? You want content as well? You know, I've got a life too! Oh, o.k., I guess I can dig something up. Did'ja hear the news about Budweiser? Bought by the Belgians? Crazy. we'll have to see where that goes.

While out at ToC, I had the chance to try some cachaca (pronounced ka-sha-sa). For those unfamiliar, as I was, cachaca is a type of rum made in Brazil. It differs from straight rum in that the liquor is made entirely from the juice of the crushed sugar cane, and not from any remnant thereof. Having just been introduced to it, I can't claim to know the finer points, but the bottle I got from the fine folks at Sagatiba certainly showed some promise.

(As an aside, I just want everyone to know that I am not 'phoning this in'. It is a little bit after 10 in the morning and I've just poured myself two shots, one of Sagatiba and one of Bacardi in an effort to give you the best possible analysis. I hope you appreciate the sacrifices I make for you.)

Comparably, the two bottles are matched in proof, which is handy in doing comparisons (and which would completely devalue any comparison I'd make otherwise.) The Sagatiba is definitely smoother, with a cleaner taste than the Bacardi, which is expected from any single-ingredient bottle. Of note, the Sagatiba also has a much sweeter bouquet.

I've only had the chance to make one cocktail with the Sagatiba, kind of a Brazilian mojito, which I snagged from an episode of Kevin Brauch's Thirsty Traveler. It was, in a word, delightful. I'll get around to making more, but with work and school starting (MBA here I come! Donations are being accepted!), it might be a little while before I can sit down to a tasting session.

Anyway, it is now time that I get on with life, one can only live the dream of 'professional booze columnist' for so long. Stay cool out there, and send in your playlists!

J.T. "Raven" Centonze has been a long time student of the art of alcohol. Initially interested in keeping conversation at parties, his love for alcohol grew to an obsession in college. In between his real job of running a college bookstore or two, he is the part owner/operator of his own winery. He bartends at private parties which allows him the innovation of many new, unique drinks.

The Raven now has his own e-mail address at the BarNoneDrinks. Please send all questions, comments, and suggestions related "The Raven's Caw" to [email protected]. Also accepted at this address are job offers, death threats, marriage proposals, offers to enlarge certain parts of my anatomy, awards nominations, petitions for absolution and anything else The Raven might need to know about.

Many drink recipes call for fruit juice. While some might find that adding bottled or canned fruit juice works just fine, others swear that using fresh fruit juice makes all the difference between an ok drink and one that is outstanding.

You probably think that juicing fruits is a bit of a hassle. And, sure, it does take a little more time that opening a bottle or popping the top of a can. But, once you get the hang of it, you'll realize that it isn't as hard as you thought, and that the benefits are amazing.

Before you can even think about squeezing your own juice, you need to invest in a juicer. There are several types to choose from. One of the most basic juicers is the manual press variety. This type of juicer is maneuvered by hand and is ideal for soft fruits. A centrifugal juicer shreds or grates the fruits and then spins it to release the juice. The last type of a masticating juicer. As the name suggests, a masticating juicer basically chews the fruit in order to break down its cell walls to create a high fiber juice.

Once you have selected the juicer of your choice, now you need the fruit. Be aware that you will need a fairly large amount of fruit if you want even a glass of fresh juice.

Fruits such as avocado, bananas and strawberries aren't the ideal fruits for juicing, although they do work well for blending in extra flavors. These types of fruits contain small amounts of water, so they won't yield much liquid.

When looking for an ideal fruit for juicing, you want to make sure that you choose those that contain large amounts of water. Grapes, pears, apples, peaches, grapefruit, oranges, watermelon, and cantaloupe are all fruits that will juice well and taste great. Softer fruits, such as pears and peaches will produce a thicker juice, often referred to as nectar, and some will even yield a juice that is thick. As a rule of thumb, remember that the softer a certain type of fruit is the thicker its created juice will be.

Once you have run your preferred fruit through your juicer, you may notice that it has a large amount of pulp in it. Some people prefer their juice to have contain this pulp, but others may not like their drink to contain any sort of chunks. If you are among the latter, you can remove the pulp by straining the juiced liquid through a coffee filter or cheesecloth.

Now that you know how about juicers and how to select fruits, you should also learn just how much freshly squeezed juice can benefit your health. Not only can you get your daily allowance of fruits, and often vegetables if you decide to juice them and add them to your drink, you can also add the enzymes and nutrients that you need to your diet. You will also consume a great amount of fiber that can help you to control how quickly your bloodstream absorbs sugar.

Next time you see a recipe that requires fruit juice, or you just have a hankering for a nice tall glass of your favorite juice, don't take the easy route and turn to manufactured products. Juice your own and know that you are getting exactly the taste you want, as well as the healthy benefits your body deserves.

Val, Val Val. What do we say about Val? I can say that she's been doing a bunch of work for us here at Bar None for the last few months, but most of it site related, not for our newsletter. However, I think she'll start becoming a regular feature here so we hope you enjoy her writing from some little place called Hoboken or was it Halifax? Hmm, maybe it was Hammonton. Wherever it was, she's doing a fine job and we're happy to have her aboard.

Summer Smash

  • 2 parts Absolut Citron
  • 1 part Lime And Lemongrass Cordial
  • 1 part Melon Liqueur
  • Passionfruit Juice
  • Lime
  • Mint Leaf
  • Orange

Fill a highball glass to the rim with ice cubes. Pour Absolut Citron, lime and lemongrass cordial and melon liqueur into a shaker. Fill the shaker with ice cubes and shake it until the shaker is very cold. Strain the drink into the highball glass. Top up with passionfruit juice. Garnish with a lime (peel), a mint leaf (leaf) and an orange (slice).

Anejo Kiss

  • 1 1/2 oz. Partida Anejo Tequila
  • 1 oz. Amarula Cream Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz. White Creme de Cacao

Shake and strain into a martini glass. Andre Cassagne, Ortinaque on the Mile, Miami

Like taxes and people who gasp "Oh, I can't drink that!" when you say you like tequila, dieters are inevitable. They'll sneak into your house or your bar, acting normal until you ask what they're drinking. Suddenly, the dieters are full of requests: do you have diet tonic water? How many calories are in the well rum? Can you replace the martini olives with something a little less fattening, like garlic-stuffed multivitamins?

Unfortunately, telling a dieter that he should just consume regular cocktails in moderation doesn't usually work. Thus, whether you're a professional bartender or just an accommodating host or hostess, it's important to be able to make a few diet drinks. Mostly you can get away with knowing the basics: dark beers, like stouts, generally have fewer calories than light ones like wheat beers. Any cocktail mixed with cream will have a high calorie count, and anything with fresh fruit will be relatively low. If a dieter is looking for something warm and comforting like coffee with Bailey's, he'll generally be happy with a Hot Toddy instead.

But there are also a number of substitutions you can make when crafting drinks for dieters. Consider making one of these updated cocktails:

  • Whiskey Sour. Commercial sours mix is often filled with sugar and nasty additives. Instead of using such a mix, prepare a whiskey sour by floating a single "Atomic Warhead" sour candy on top of a shot of Maker's Mark.
  • White-Chocolate Raspberry Martini. The first substitution to this drink should be obvious: replace the raspberry liqueur with delicious and healthy fresh raspberries. The texture of Godiva White Chocolate Liqueur, meanwhile, can be replaced with skim milk. Finally, replace the vodka with water. I call this "Raspberry Milk Water." If you're worried that the alcohol content is too minimal, let the mix sit behind a radiator in a plastic bag for a few weeks until it ferments.
  • Pomegranate Cosmopolitan. A great diet replacement for this cocktail can be made with new "low-cal" beers. Replace the pomegranate juice with Michelob ULTRA Pomegranate Raspberry. Replace the lime juice with Michelob ULTRA Lime Cactus. Replace the triple sec with Michelob ULTRA Tuscan Orange Grapefruit. Replace the vodka with tears. The Sex and the City girls would be proud.
  • Gin and Tonic. I call this one the "Hot Air Balloon." Mix a typical gin and tonic, but replace the tonic water with air. Then place two slices of lime with a slice of lemon in-between on the rim to mimic the pattern of a balloon.
  • Manhattan. Blindfold the dieter and drive him to Times Square. Drop the dieter off, throw a shot of whiskey in his face, and make him run home.

As you can see, accommodating the needs of a dieter can be simple. And remember: there's a good chance that the dieter is hungry and consuming drinks on an empty stomach. Just be warned.

Meg Favreau is a writer and comedian living in Philadelphia, PA. Read her blog at www.ihearyoulikestories.com.

Plymouth Gin - Midtown Mule

This is the latest cocktail creation by NYC Insieme Restaurant's bartender Marshall Altier. His most recent creation appropriately named the Midtown Mule is an ideal and refreshing way to end a hot summer day or transition to warm fall evenings. Altier plays on two very popular trends present in the cocktail world - the resurgence of gin-based cocktails as well as the use of vegetables in drinks. The all star combination makes the Midtown Mule an excellent addition to the thriving cocktail culture in New York City.

  • 1/6 cucumber (sliced into coins)
  • 2 oz. Plymouth Gin
  • 1oz. fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 oz. cardamom syrup*
  • 1/2 oz. Cointreau

Place cucumber slices and cardamon syrup in a tin and muddle to paste. Pour in remaining ingredients and shake. Pour over fresh ice in a collins glass and top with ginger beer. Garnish with a wedge of lime and 2 cucumber slices.

To produce Cardamom Syrup:

Steep 2 Tbsp. of black Cardamom pods in hot water. Combine the pods with equal parts sugar and water and steep until consistent. Cool mixture and bottle for later use.

Created by Marshall Altier at Insieme
777 7th Ave
New York, NY 10019
(212) 582-1310


Gallery: Celebrate National Bourbon Heritage Month with These 6 Expert Recipes - Recipes

Well, after a long summer of mixed weather, great times and plenty of new drinks, it's the month for all those in school to return to the classroom. Good luck!

Oh yeah, it's also Bourbon Heritage Month so you may find a few things bourbon as well.

We've stuffed this month full of new content, a new writer and some great new recipes. The Raven also introduces our Tales of the Cocktail swag contest where you can win a collection of stuff we picked up. Check out his article below. We hope you enjoy this month's edition.

We've also implemented a RSS feed to update you on all the latest entries to the database. You can find the page here.

Please be smart, don't drink and drive! Enjoy the following recipes in moderation and take a cab if you need one.

Hendrick's Gin - The Highland Berry

  • 1 oz. Hendrick's Gin
  • 1/2 oz. black raspberry liqueur
  • 3 oz. cranberry juice
  • 2 oz. tonic water
  • cranberries for garnish

Add Hendrick's Gin, black raspberry liqueur and cranberry juice into a shaker. Stir and shake well. Strain into cocktail glass and top with tonic water and garnish with frozen cranberries. Add ice if desire.

My friends, I have a problem. You see, a few weeks back I went to this little industry event in New Orleans called Tales of the Cocktail maybe you've heard of it (or maybe you've been living under a rock and not reading my articles). In any case, like at all great events, our contingent was able to gather a truly offensive amount of swag (which I'll thank the writers of The Office for clearing up for me: Stuff We All Get!) Herein lies my problem: Dan says I've got to give some of it away. Now, I worked hard to collect this stuff, so I'm not just going to give it away. "Worked hard?" I hear you cry. "What was so hard about collect free stuff?" Just ask my liver.

As it turns out, I've got a contest I've been looking to run for a few months now that was just begging for a prize. Being the intelligent person I am, I put two and two together and got five. well o.k., 25 (work with me here.) Have I piqued your interest? O.k. then, here it goes:

The Raven is throwing a party and needs tunes to keep it going. He is looking for the playlist to beat all playlists. Of course, there are a few restrictions to what he'll play.

  • Each playlist must be exactly 25 songs.
  • This is a drinking song playlist (and a contest on a cocktail site!) All songs must deal with alcohol, drinking, or be traditionally recognized as a drinking song.
  • No more than 7 songs may be from the same genre, and no more than 10 from the same decade.
  • The Raven is eclectic. A great playlist for him will span over 100 years.
  • Playlist order matters! Be sure to give us an explanation and walk us through your playlist.

One entry per person, so get it right the first time. The Raven and Dan (and possibly a few others) will make the final decision as to the winner. Points will be given for creative playlists that have a natural progression, as well as heterogeneity. Be prepared to explain a strange song pick if we don't get it, and you can't justify it, you lose points. Also, classics are called such because they are recognized as great you can use them, but if we get two people with matching lists, you're both disqualified.

All entries must be submitted here by October 18th at midnight. Depending on the number of entries, we will try to have the results by the October newsletter. So what are the prizes?

Lot's of great stuff right? Well, even if you can't tell what it all is, it's still lots of great stuff. There may be more depending on where you are and what other goodies we manage to acquire between now and then. There may even be a second prize, if we really feel that it is deserved.

What? You're still here? The contest wasn't enough for you? You want content as well? You know, I've got a life too! Oh, o.k., I guess I can dig something up. Did'ja hear the news about Budweiser? Bought by the Belgians? Crazy. we'll have to see where that goes.

While out at ToC, I had the chance to try some cachaca (pronounced ka-sha-sa). For those unfamiliar, as I was, cachaca is a type of rum made in Brazil. It differs from straight rum in that the liquor is made entirely from the juice of the crushed sugar cane, and not from any remnant thereof. Having just been introduced to it, I can't claim to know the finer points, but the bottle I got from the fine folks at Sagatiba certainly showed some promise.

(As an aside, I just want everyone to know that I am not 'phoning this in'. It is a little bit after 10 in the morning and I've just poured myself two shots, one of Sagatiba and one of Bacardi in an effort to give you the best possible analysis. I hope you appreciate the sacrifices I make for you.)

Comparably, the two bottles are matched in proof, which is handy in doing comparisons (and which would completely devalue any comparison I'd make otherwise.) The Sagatiba is definitely smoother, with a cleaner taste than the Bacardi, which is expected from any single-ingredient bottle. Of note, the Sagatiba also has a much sweeter bouquet.

I've only had the chance to make one cocktail with the Sagatiba, kind of a Brazilian mojito, which I snagged from an episode of Kevin Brauch's Thirsty Traveler. It was, in a word, delightful. I'll get around to making more, but with work and school starting (MBA here I come! Donations are being accepted!), it might be a little while before I can sit down to a tasting session.

Anyway, it is now time that I get on with life, one can only live the dream of 'professional booze columnist' for so long. Stay cool out there, and send in your playlists!

J.T. "Raven" Centonze has been a long time student of the art of alcohol. Initially interested in keeping conversation at parties, his love for alcohol grew to an obsession in college. In between his real job of running a college bookstore or two, he is the part owner/operator of his own winery. He bartends at private parties which allows him the innovation of many new, unique drinks.

The Raven now has his own e-mail address at the BarNoneDrinks. Please send all questions, comments, and suggestions related "The Raven's Caw" to [email protected]. Also accepted at this address are job offers, death threats, marriage proposals, offers to enlarge certain parts of my anatomy, awards nominations, petitions for absolution and anything else The Raven might need to know about.

Many drink recipes call for fruit juice. While some might find that adding bottled or canned fruit juice works just fine, others swear that using fresh fruit juice makes all the difference between an ok drink and one that is outstanding.

You probably think that juicing fruits is a bit of a hassle. And, sure, it does take a little more time that opening a bottle or popping the top of a can. But, once you get the hang of it, you'll realize that it isn't as hard as you thought, and that the benefits are amazing.

Before you can even think about squeezing your own juice, you need to invest in a juicer. There are several types to choose from. One of the most basic juicers is the manual press variety. This type of juicer is maneuvered by hand and is ideal for soft fruits. A centrifugal juicer shreds or grates the fruits and then spins it to release the juice. The last type of a masticating juicer. As the name suggests, a masticating juicer basically chews the fruit in order to break down its cell walls to create a high fiber juice.

Once you have selected the juicer of your choice, now you need the fruit. Be aware that you will need a fairly large amount of fruit if you want even a glass of fresh juice.

Fruits such as avocado, bananas and strawberries aren't the ideal fruits for juicing, although they do work well for blending in extra flavors. These types of fruits contain small amounts of water, so they won't yield much liquid.

When looking for an ideal fruit for juicing, you want to make sure that you choose those that contain large amounts of water. Grapes, pears, apples, peaches, grapefruit, oranges, watermelon, and cantaloupe are all fruits that will juice well and taste great. Softer fruits, such as pears and peaches will produce a thicker juice, often referred to as nectar, and some will even yield a juice that is thick. As a rule of thumb, remember that the softer a certain type of fruit is the thicker its created juice will be.

Once you have run your preferred fruit through your juicer, you may notice that it has a large amount of pulp in it. Some people prefer their juice to have contain this pulp, but others may not like their drink to contain any sort of chunks. If you are among the latter, you can remove the pulp by straining the juiced liquid through a coffee filter or cheesecloth.

Now that you know how about juicers and how to select fruits, you should also learn just how much freshly squeezed juice can benefit your health. Not only can you get your daily allowance of fruits, and often vegetables if you decide to juice them and add them to your drink, you can also add the enzymes and nutrients that you need to your diet. You will also consume a great amount of fiber that can help you to control how quickly your bloodstream absorbs sugar.

Next time you see a recipe that requires fruit juice, or you just have a hankering for a nice tall glass of your favorite juice, don't take the easy route and turn to manufactured products. Juice your own and know that you are getting exactly the taste you want, as well as the healthy benefits your body deserves.

Val, Val Val. What do we say about Val? I can say that she's been doing a bunch of work for us here at Bar None for the last few months, but most of it site related, not for our newsletter. However, I think she'll start becoming a regular feature here so we hope you enjoy her writing from some little place called Hoboken or was it Halifax? Hmm, maybe it was Hammonton. Wherever it was, she's doing a fine job and we're happy to have her aboard.

Summer Smash

  • 2 parts Absolut Citron
  • 1 part Lime And Lemongrass Cordial
  • 1 part Melon Liqueur
  • Passionfruit Juice
  • Lime
  • Mint Leaf
  • Orange

Fill a highball glass to the rim with ice cubes. Pour Absolut Citron, lime and lemongrass cordial and melon liqueur into a shaker. Fill the shaker with ice cubes and shake it until the shaker is very cold. Strain the drink into the highball glass. Top up with passionfruit juice. Garnish with a lime (peel), a mint leaf (leaf) and an orange (slice).

Anejo Kiss

  • 1 1/2 oz. Partida Anejo Tequila
  • 1 oz. Amarula Cream Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz. White Creme de Cacao

Shake and strain into a martini glass. Andre Cassagne, Ortinaque on the Mile, Miami

Like taxes and people who gasp "Oh, I can't drink that!" when you say you like tequila, dieters are inevitable. They'll sneak into your house or your bar, acting normal until you ask what they're drinking. Suddenly, the dieters are full of requests: do you have diet tonic water? How many calories are in the well rum? Can you replace the martini olives with something a little less fattening, like garlic-stuffed multivitamins?

Unfortunately, telling a dieter that he should just consume regular cocktails in moderation doesn't usually work. Thus, whether you're a professional bartender or just an accommodating host or hostess, it's important to be able to make a few diet drinks. Mostly you can get away with knowing the basics: dark beers, like stouts, generally have fewer calories than light ones like wheat beers. Any cocktail mixed with cream will have a high calorie count, and anything with fresh fruit will be relatively low. If a dieter is looking for something warm and comforting like coffee with Bailey's, he'll generally be happy with a Hot Toddy instead.

But there are also a number of substitutions you can make when crafting drinks for dieters. Consider making one of these updated cocktails:

  • Whiskey Sour. Commercial sours mix is often filled with sugar and nasty additives. Instead of using such a mix, prepare a whiskey sour by floating a single "Atomic Warhead" sour candy on top of a shot of Maker's Mark.
  • White-Chocolate Raspberry Martini. The first substitution to this drink should be obvious: replace the raspberry liqueur with delicious and healthy fresh raspberries. The texture of Godiva White Chocolate Liqueur, meanwhile, can be replaced with skim milk. Finally, replace the vodka with water. I call this "Raspberry Milk Water." If you're worried that the alcohol content is too minimal, let the mix sit behind a radiator in a plastic bag for a few weeks until it ferments.
  • Pomegranate Cosmopolitan. A great diet replacement for this cocktail can be made with new "low-cal" beers. Replace the pomegranate juice with Michelob ULTRA Pomegranate Raspberry. Replace the lime juice with Michelob ULTRA Lime Cactus. Replace the triple sec with Michelob ULTRA Tuscan Orange Grapefruit. Replace the vodka with tears. The Sex and the City girls would be proud.
  • Gin and Tonic. I call this one the "Hot Air Balloon." Mix a typical gin and tonic, but replace the tonic water with air. Then place two slices of lime with a slice of lemon in-between on the rim to mimic the pattern of a balloon.
  • Manhattan. Blindfold the dieter and drive him to Times Square. Drop the dieter off, throw a shot of whiskey in his face, and make him run home.

As you can see, accommodating the needs of a dieter can be simple. And remember: there's a good chance that the dieter is hungry and consuming drinks on an empty stomach. Just be warned.

Meg Favreau is a writer and comedian living in Philadelphia, PA. Read her blog at www.ihearyoulikestories.com.

Plymouth Gin - Midtown Mule

This is the latest cocktail creation by NYC Insieme Restaurant's bartender Marshall Altier. His most recent creation appropriately named the Midtown Mule is an ideal and refreshing way to end a hot summer day or transition to warm fall evenings. Altier plays on two very popular trends present in the cocktail world - the resurgence of gin-based cocktails as well as the use of vegetables in drinks. The all star combination makes the Midtown Mule an excellent addition to the thriving cocktail culture in New York City.

  • 1/6 cucumber (sliced into coins)
  • 2 oz. Plymouth Gin
  • 1oz. fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 oz. cardamom syrup*
  • 1/2 oz. Cointreau

Place cucumber slices and cardamon syrup in a tin and muddle to paste. Pour in remaining ingredients and shake. Pour over fresh ice in a collins glass and top with ginger beer. Garnish with a wedge of lime and 2 cucumber slices.

To produce Cardamom Syrup:

Steep 2 Tbsp. of black Cardamom pods in hot water. Combine the pods with equal parts sugar and water and steep until consistent. Cool mixture and bottle for later use.

Created by Marshall Altier at Insieme
777 7th Ave
New York, NY 10019
(212) 582-1310


Gallery: Celebrate National Bourbon Heritage Month with These 6 Expert Recipes - Recipes

Well, after a long summer of mixed weather, great times and plenty of new drinks, it's the month for all those in school to return to the classroom. Good luck!

Oh yeah, it's also Bourbon Heritage Month so you may find a few things bourbon as well.

We've stuffed this month full of new content, a new writer and some great new recipes. The Raven also introduces our Tales of the Cocktail swag contest where you can win a collection of stuff we picked up. Check out his article below. We hope you enjoy this month's edition.

We've also implemented a RSS feed to update you on all the latest entries to the database. You can find the page here.

Please be smart, don't drink and drive! Enjoy the following recipes in moderation and take a cab if you need one.

Hendrick's Gin - The Highland Berry

  • 1 oz. Hendrick's Gin
  • 1/2 oz. black raspberry liqueur
  • 3 oz. cranberry juice
  • 2 oz. tonic water
  • cranberries for garnish

Add Hendrick's Gin, black raspberry liqueur and cranberry juice into a shaker. Stir and shake well. Strain into cocktail glass and top with tonic water and garnish with frozen cranberries. Add ice if desire.

My friends, I have a problem. You see, a few weeks back I went to this little industry event in New Orleans called Tales of the Cocktail maybe you've heard of it (or maybe you've been living under a rock and not reading my articles). In any case, like at all great events, our contingent was able to gather a truly offensive amount of swag (which I'll thank the writers of The Office for clearing up for me: Stuff We All Get!) Herein lies my problem: Dan says I've got to give some of it away. Now, I worked hard to collect this stuff, so I'm not just going to give it away. "Worked hard?" I hear you cry. "What was so hard about collect free stuff?" Just ask my liver.

As it turns out, I've got a contest I've been looking to run for a few months now that was just begging for a prize. Being the intelligent person I am, I put two and two together and got five. well o.k., 25 (work with me here.) Have I piqued your interest? O.k. then, here it goes:

The Raven is throwing a party and needs tunes to keep it going. He is looking for the playlist to beat all playlists. Of course, there are a few restrictions to what he'll play.

  • Each playlist must be exactly 25 songs.
  • This is a drinking song playlist (and a contest on a cocktail site!) All songs must deal with alcohol, drinking, or be traditionally recognized as a drinking song.
  • No more than 7 songs may be from the same genre, and no more than 10 from the same decade.
  • The Raven is eclectic. A great playlist for him will span over 100 years.
  • Playlist order matters! Be sure to give us an explanation and walk us through your playlist.

One entry per person, so get it right the first time. The Raven and Dan (and possibly a few others) will make the final decision as to the winner. Points will be given for creative playlists that have a natural progression, as well as heterogeneity. Be prepared to explain a strange song pick if we don't get it, and you can't justify it, you lose points. Also, classics are called such because they are recognized as great you can use them, but if we get two people with matching lists, you're both disqualified.

All entries must be submitted here by October 18th at midnight. Depending on the number of entries, we will try to have the results by the October newsletter. So what are the prizes?

Lot's of great stuff right? Well, even if you can't tell what it all is, it's still lots of great stuff. There may be more depending on where you are and what other goodies we manage to acquire between now and then. There may even be a second prize, if we really feel that it is deserved.

What? You're still here? The contest wasn't enough for you? You want content as well? You know, I've got a life too! Oh, o.k., I guess I can dig something up. Did'ja hear the news about Budweiser? Bought by the Belgians? Crazy. we'll have to see where that goes.

While out at ToC, I had the chance to try some cachaca (pronounced ka-sha-sa). For those unfamiliar, as I was, cachaca is a type of rum made in Brazil. It differs from straight rum in that the liquor is made entirely from the juice of the crushed sugar cane, and not from any remnant thereof. Having just been introduced to it, I can't claim to know the finer points, but the bottle I got from the fine folks at Sagatiba certainly showed some promise.

(As an aside, I just want everyone to know that I am not 'phoning this in'. It is a little bit after 10 in the morning and I've just poured myself two shots, one of Sagatiba and one of Bacardi in an effort to give you the best possible analysis. I hope you appreciate the sacrifices I make for you.)

Comparably, the two bottles are matched in proof, which is handy in doing comparisons (and which would completely devalue any comparison I'd make otherwise.) The Sagatiba is definitely smoother, with a cleaner taste than the Bacardi, which is expected from any single-ingredient bottle. Of note, the Sagatiba also has a much sweeter bouquet.

I've only had the chance to make one cocktail with the Sagatiba, kind of a Brazilian mojito, which I snagged from an episode of Kevin Brauch's Thirsty Traveler. It was, in a word, delightful. I'll get around to making more, but with work and school starting (MBA here I come! Donations are being accepted!), it might be a little while before I can sit down to a tasting session.

Anyway, it is now time that I get on with life, one can only live the dream of 'professional booze columnist' for so long. Stay cool out there, and send in your playlists!

J.T. "Raven" Centonze has been a long time student of the art of alcohol. Initially interested in keeping conversation at parties, his love for alcohol grew to an obsession in college. In between his real job of running a college bookstore or two, he is the part owner/operator of his own winery. He bartends at private parties which allows him the innovation of many new, unique drinks.

The Raven now has his own e-mail address at the BarNoneDrinks. Please send all questions, comments, and suggestions related "The Raven's Caw" to [email protected]. Also accepted at this address are job offers, death threats, marriage proposals, offers to enlarge certain parts of my anatomy, awards nominations, petitions for absolution and anything else The Raven might need to know about.

Many drink recipes call for fruit juice. While some might find that adding bottled or canned fruit juice works just fine, others swear that using fresh fruit juice makes all the difference between an ok drink and one that is outstanding.

You probably think that juicing fruits is a bit of a hassle. And, sure, it does take a little more time that opening a bottle or popping the top of a can. But, once you get the hang of it, you'll realize that it isn't as hard as you thought, and that the benefits are amazing.

Before you can even think about squeezing your own juice, you need to invest in a juicer. There are several types to choose from. One of the most basic juicers is the manual press variety. This type of juicer is maneuvered by hand and is ideal for soft fruits. A centrifugal juicer shreds or grates the fruits and then spins it to release the juice. The last type of a masticating juicer. As the name suggests, a masticating juicer basically chews the fruit in order to break down its cell walls to create a high fiber juice.

Once you have selected the juicer of your choice, now you need the fruit. Be aware that you will need a fairly large amount of fruit if you want even a glass of fresh juice.

Fruits such as avocado, bananas and strawberries aren't the ideal fruits for juicing, although they do work well for blending in extra flavors. These types of fruits contain small amounts of water, so they won't yield much liquid.

When looking for an ideal fruit for juicing, you want to make sure that you choose those that contain large amounts of water. Grapes, pears, apples, peaches, grapefruit, oranges, watermelon, and cantaloupe are all fruits that will juice well and taste great. Softer fruits, such as pears and peaches will produce a thicker juice, often referred to as nectar, and some will even yield a juice that is thick. As a rule of thumb, remember that the softer a certain type of fruit is the thicker its created juice will be.

Once you have run your preferred fruit through your juicer, you may notice that it has a large amount of pulp in it. Some people prefer their juice to have contain this pulp, but others may not like their drink to contain any sort of chunks. If you are among the latter, you can remove the pulp by straining the juiced liquid through a coffee filter or cheesecloth.

Now that you know how about juicers and how to select fruits, you should also learn just how much freshly squeezed juice can benefit your health. Not only can you get your daily allowance of fruits, and often vegetables if you decide to juice them and add them to your drink, you can also add the enzymes and nutrients that you need to your diet. You will also consume a great amount of fiber that can help you to control how quickly your bloodstream absorbs sugar.

Next time you see a recipe that requires fruit juice, or you just have a hankering for a nice tall glass of your favorite juice, don't take the easy route and turn to manufactured products. Juice your own and know that you are getting exactly the taste you want, as well as the healthy benefits your body deserves.

Val, Val Val. What do we say about Val? I can say that she's been doing a bunch of work for us here at Bar None for the last few months, but most of it site related, not for our newsletter. However, I think she'll start becoming a regular feature here so we hope you enjoy her writing from some little place called Hoboken or was it Halifax? Hmm, maybe it was Hammonton. Wherever it was, she's doing a fine job and we're happy to have her aboard.

Summer Smash

  • 2 parts Absolut Citron
  • 1 part Lime And Lemongrass Cordial
  • 1 part Melon Liqueur
  • Passionfruit Juice
  • Lime
  • Mint Leaf
  • Orange

Fill a highball glass to the rim with ice cubes. Pour Absolut Citron, lime and lemongrass cordial and melon liqueur into a shaker. Fill the shaker with ice cubes and shake it until the shaker is very cold. Strain the drink into the highball glass. Top up with passionfruit juice. Garnish with a lime (peel), a mint leaf (leaf) and an orange (slice).

Anejo Kiss

  • 1 1/2 oz. Partida Anejo Tequila
  • 1 oz. Amarula Cream Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz. White Creme de Cacao

Shake and strain into a martini glass. Andre Cassagne, Ortinaque on the Mile, Miami

Like taxes and people who gasp "Oh, I can't drink that!" when you say you like tequila, dieters are inevitable. They'll sneak into your house or your bar, acting normal until you ask what they're drinking. Suddenly, the dieters are full of requests: do you have diet tonic water? How many calories are in the well rum? Can you replace the martini olives with something a little less fattening, like garlic-stuffed multivitamins?

Unfortunately, telling a dieter that he should just consume regular cocktails in moderation doesn't usually work. Thus, whether you're a professional bartender or just an accommodating host or hostess, it's important to be able to make a few diet drinks. Mostly you can get away with knowing the basics: dark beers, like stouts, generally have fewer calories than light ones like wheat beers. Any cocktail mixed with cream will have a high calorie count, and anything with fresh fruit will be relatively low. If a dieter is looking for something warm and comforting like coffee with Bailey's, he'll generally be happy with a Hot Toddy instead.

But there are also a number of substitutions you can make when crafting drinks for dieters. Consider making one of these updated cocktails:

  • Whiskey Sour. Commercial sours mix is often filled with sugar and nasty additives. Instead of using such a mix, prepare a whiskey sour by floating a single "Atomic Warhead" sour candy on top of a shot of Maker's Mark.
  • White-Chocolate Raspberry Martini. The first substitution to this drink should be obvious: replace the raspberry liqueur with delicious and healthy fresh raspberries. The texture of Godiva White Chocolate Liqueur, meanwhile, can be replaced with skim milk. Finally, replace the vodka with water. I call this "Raspberry Milk Water." If you're worried that the alcohol content is too minimal, let the mix sit behind a radiator in a plastic bag for a few weeks until it ferments.
  • Pomegranate Cosmopolitan. A great diet replacement for this cocktail can be made with new "low-cal" beers. Replace the pomegranate juice with Michelob ULTRA Pomegranate Raspberry. Replace the lime juice with Michelob ULTRA Lime Cactus. Replace the triple sec with Michelob ULTRA Tuscan Orange Grapefruit. Replace the vodka with tears. The Sex and the City girls would be proud.
  • Gin and Tonic. I call this one the "Hot Air Balloon." Mix a typical gin and tonic, but replace the tonic water with air. Then place two slices of lime with a slice of lemon in-between on the rim to mimic the pattern of a balloon.
  • Manhattan. Blindfold the dieter and drive him to Times Square. Drop the dieter off, throw a shot of whiskey in his face, and make him run home.

As you can see, accommodating the needs of a dieter can be simple. And remember: there's a good chance that the dieter is hungry and consuming drinks on an empty stomach. Just be warned.

Meg Favreau is a writer and comedian living in Philadelphia, PA. Read her blog at www.ihearyoulikestories.com.

Plymouth Gin - Midtown Mule

This is the latest cocktail creation by NYC Insieme Restaurant's bartender Marshall Altier. His most recent creation appropriately named the Midtown Mule is an ideal and refreshing way to end a hot summer day or transition to warm fall evenings. Altier plays on two very popular trends present in the cocktail world - the resurgence of gin-based cocktails as well as the use of vegetables in drinks. The all star combination makes the Midtown Mule an excellent addition to the thriving cocktail culture in New York City.

  • 1/6 cucumber (sliced into coins)
  • 2 oz. Plymouth Gin
  • 1oz. fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 oz. cardamom syrup*
  • 1/2 oz. Cointreau

Place cucumber slices and cardamon syrup in a tin and muddle to paste. Pour in remaining ingredients and shake. Pour over fresh ice in a collins glass and top with ginger beer. Garnish with a wedge of lime and 2 cucumber slices.

To produce Cardamom Syrup:

Steep 2 Tbsp. of black Cardamom pods in hot water. Combine the pods with equal parts sugar and water and steep until consistent. Cool mixture and bottle for later use.

Created by Marshall Altier at Insieme
777 7th Ave
New York, NY 10019
(212) 582-1310


Gallery: Celebrate National Bourbon Heritage Month with These 6 Expert Recipes - Recipes

Well, after a long summer of mixed weather, great times and plenty of new drinks, it's the month for all those in school to return to the classroom. Good luck!

Oh yeah, it's also Bourbon Heritage Month so you may find a few things bourbon as well.

We've stuffed this month full of new content, a new writer and some great new recipes. The Raven also introduces our Tales of the Cocktail swag contest where you can win a collection of stuff we picked up. Check out his article below. We hope you enjoy this month's edition.

We've also implemented a RSS feed to update you on all the latest entries to the database. You can find the page here.

Please be smart, don't drink and drive! Enjoy the following recipes in moderation and take a cab if you need one.

Hendrick's Gin - The Highland Berry

  • 1 oz. Hendrick's Gin
  • 1/2 oz. black raspberry liqueur
  • 3 oz. cranberry juice
  • 2 oz. tonic water
  • cranberries for garnish

Add Hendrick's Gin, black raspberry liqueur and cranberry juice into a shaker. Stir and shake well. Strain into cocktail glass and top with tonic water and garnish with frozen cranberries. Add ice if desire.

My friends, I have a problem. You see, a few weeks back I went to this little industry event in New Orleans called Tales of the Cocktail maybe you've heard of it (or maybe you've been living under a rock and not reading my articles). In any case, like at all great events, our contingent was able to gather a truly offensive amount of swag (which I'll thank the writers of The Office for clearing up for me: Stuff We All Get!) Herein lies my problem: Dan says I've got to give some of it away. Now, I worked hard to collect this stuff, so I'm not just going to give it away. "Worked hard?" I hear you cry. "What was so hard about collect free stuff?" Just ask my liver.

As it turns out, I've got a contest I've been looking to run for a few months now that was just begging for a prize. Being the intelligent person I am, I put two and two together and got five. well o.k., 25 (work with me here.) Have I piqued your interest? O.k. then, here it goes:

The Raven is throwing a party and needs tunes to keep it going. He is looking for the playlist to beat all playlists. Of course, there are a few restrictions to what he'll play.

  • Each playlist must be exactly 25 songs.
  • This is a drinking song playlist (and a contest on a cocktail site!) All songs must deal with alcohol, drinking, or be traditionally recognized as a drinking song.
  • No more than 7 songs may be from the same genre, and no more than 10 from the same decade.
  • The Raven is eclectic. A great playlist for him will span over 100 years.
  • Playlist order matters! Be sure to give us an explanation and walk us through your playlist.

One entry per person, so get it right the first time. The Raven and Dan (and possibly a few others) will make the final decision as to the winner. Points will be given for creative playlists that have a natural progression, as well as heterogeneity. Be prepared to explain a strange song pick if we don't get it, and you can't justify it, you lose points. Also, classics are called such because they are recognized as great you can use them, but if we get two people with matching lists, you're both disqualified.

All entries must be submitted here by October 18th at midnight. Depending on the number of entries, we will try to have the results by the October newsletter. So what are the prizes?

Lot's of great stuff right? Well, even if you can't tell what it all is, it's still lots of great stuff. There may be more depending on where you are and what other goodies we manage to acquire between now and then. There may even be a second prize, if we really feel that it is deserved.

What? You're still here? The contest wasn't enough for you? You want content as well? You know, I've got a life too! Oh, o.k., I guess I can dig something up. Did'ja hear the news about Budweiser? Bought by the Belgians? Crazy. we'll have to see where that goes.

While out at ToC, I had the chance to try some cachaca (pronounced ka-sha-sa). For those unfamiliar, as I was, cachaca is a type of rum made in Brazil. It differs from straight rum in that the liquor is made entirely from the juice of the crushed sugar cane, and not from any remnant thereof. Having just been introduced to it, I can't claim to know the finer points, but the bottle I got from the fine folks at Sagatiba certainly showed some promise.

(As an aside, I just want everyone to know that I am not 'phoning this in'. It is a little bit after 10 in the morning and I've just poured myself two shots, one of Sagatiba and one of Bacardi in an effort to give you the best possible analysis. I hope you appreciate the sacrifices I make for you.)

Comparably, the two bottles are matched in proof, which is handy in doing comparisons (and which would completely devalue any comparison I'd make otherwise.) The Sagatiba is definitely smoother, with a cleaner taste than the Bacardi, which is expected from any single-ingredient bottle. Of note, the Sagatiba also has a much sweeter bouquet.

I've only had the chance to make one cocktail with the Sagatiba, kind of a Brazilian mojito, which I snagged from an episode of Kevin Brauch's Thirsty Traveler. It was, in a word, delightful. I'll get around to making more, but with work and school starting (MBA here I come! Donations are being accepted!), it might be a little while before I can sit down to a tasting session.

Anyway, it is now time that I get on with life, one can only live the dream of 'professional booze columnist' for so long. Stay cool out there, and send in your playlists!

J.T. "Raven" Centonze has been a long time student of the art of alcohol. Initially interested in keeping conversation at parties, his love for alcohol grew to an obsession in college. In between his real job of running a college bookstore or two, he is the part owner/operator of his own winery. He bartends at private parties which allows him the innovation of many new, unique drinks.

The Raven now has his own e-mail address at the BarNoneDrinks. Please send all questions, comments, and suggestions related "The Raven's Caw" to [email protected]. Also accepted at this address are job offers, death threats, marriage proposals, offers to enlarge certain parts of my anatomy, awards nominations, petitions for absolution and anything else The Raven might need to know about.

Many drink recipes call for fruit juice. While some might find that adding bottled or canned fruit juice works just fine, others swear that using fresh fruit juice makes all the difference between an ok drink and one that is outstanding.

You probably think that juicing fruits is a bit of a hassle. And, sure, it does take a little more time that opening a bottle or popping the top of a can. But, once you get the hang of it, you'll realize that it isn't as hard as you thought, and that the benefits are amazing.

Before you can even think about squeezing your own juice, you need to invest in a juicer. There are several types to choose from. One of the most basic juicers is the manual press variety. This type of juicer is maneuvered by hand and is ideal for soft fruits. A centrifugal juicer shreds or grates the fruits and then spins it to release the juice. The last type of a masticating juicer. As the name suggests, a masticating juicer basically chews the fruit in order to break down its cell walls to create a high fiber juice.

Once you have selected the juicer of your choice, now you need the fruit. Be aware that you will need a fairly large amount of fruit if you want even a glass of fresh juice.

Fruits such as avocado, bananas and strawberries aren't the ideal fruits for juicing, although they do work well for blending in extra flavors. These types of fruits contain small amounts of water, so they won't yield much liquid.

When looking for an ideal fruit for juicing, you want to make sure that you choose those that contain large amounts of water. Grapes, pears, apples, peaches, grapefruit, oranges, watermelon, and cantaloupe are all fruits that will juice well and taste great. Softer fruits, such as pears and peaches will produce a thicker juice, often referred to as nectar, and some will even yield a juice that is thick. As a rule of thumb, remember that the softer a certain type of fruit is the thicker its created juice will be.

Once you have run your preferred fruit through your juicer, you may notice that it has a large amount of pulp in it. Some people prefer their juice to have contain this pulp, but others may not like their drink to contain any sort of chunks. If you are among the latter, you can remove the pulp by straining the juiced liquid through a coffee filter or cheesecloth.

Now that you know how about juicers and how to select fruits, you should also learn just how much freshly squeezed juice can benefit your health. Not only can you get your daily allowance of fruits, and often vegetables if you decide to juice them and add them to your drink, you can also add the enzymes and nutrients that you need to your diet. You will also consume a great amount of fiber that can help you to control how quickly your bloodstream absorbs sugar.

Next time you see a recipe that requires fruit juice, or you just have a hankering for a nice tall glass of your favorite juice, don't take the easy route and turn to manufactured products. Juice your own and know that you are getting exactly the taste you want, as well as the healthy benefits your body deserves.

Val, Val Val. What do we say about Val? I can say that she's been doing a bunch of work for us here at Bar None for the last few months, but most of it site related, not for our newsletter. However, I think she'll start becoming a regular feature here so we hope you enjoy her writing from some little place called Hoboken or was it Halifax? Hmm, maybe it was Hammonton. Wherever it was, she's doing a fine job and we're happy to have her aboard.

Summer Smash

  • 2 parts Absolut Citron
  • 1 part Lime And Lemongrass Cordial
  • 1 part Melon Liqueur
  • Passionfruit Juice
  • Lime
  • Mint Leaf
  • Orange

Fill a highball glass to the rim with ice cubes. Pour Absolut Citron, lime and lemongrass cordial and melon liqueur into a shaker. Fill the shaker with ice cubes and shake it until the shaker is very cold. Strain the drink into the highball glass. Top up with passionfruit juice. Garnish with a lime (peel), a mint leaf (leaf) and an orange (slice).

Anejo Kiss

  • 1 1/2 oz. Partida Anejo Tequila
  • 1 oz. Amarula Cream Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz. White Creme de Cacao

Shake and strain into a martini glass. Andre Cassagne, Ortinaque on the Mile, Miami

Like taxes and people who gasp "Oh, I can't drink that!" when you say you like tequila, dieters are inevitable. They'll sneak into your house or your bar, acting normal until you ask what they're drinking. Suddenly, the dieters are full of requests: do you have diet tonic water? How many calories are in the well rum? Can you replace the martini olives with something a little less fattening, like garlic-stuffed multivitamins?

Unfortunately, telling a dieter that he should just consume regular cocktails in moderation doesn't usually work. Thus, whether you're a professional bartender or just an accommodating host or hostess, it's important to be able to make a few diet drinks. Mostly you can get away with knowing the basics: dark beers, like stouts, generally have fewer calories than light ones like wheat beers. Any cocktail mixed with cream will have a high calorie count, and anything with fresh fruit will be relatively low. If a dieter is looking for something warm and comforting like coffee with Bailey's, he'll generally be happy with a Hot Toddy instead.

But there are also a number of substitutions you can make when crafting drinks for dieters. Consider making one of these updated cocktails:

  • Whiskey Sour. Commercial sours mix is often filled with sugar and nasty additives. Instead of using such a mix, prepare a whiskey sour by floating a single "Atomic Warhead" sour candy on top of a shot of Maker's Mark.
  • White-Chocolate Raspberry Martini. The first substitution to this drink should be obvious: replace the raspberry liqueur with delicious and healthy fresh raspberries. The texture of Godiva White Chocolate Liqueur, meanwhile, can be replaced with skim milk. Finally, replace the vodka with water. I call this "Raspberry Milk Water." If you're worried that the alcohol content is too minimal, let the mix sit behind a radiator in a plastic bag for a few weeks until it ferments.
  • Pomegranate Cosmopolitan. A great diet replacement for this cocktail can be made with new "low-cal" beers. Replace the pomegranate juice with Michelob ULTRA Pomegranate Raspberry. Replace the lime juice with Michelob ULTRA Lime Cactus. Replace the triple sec with Michelob ULTRA Tuscan Orange Grapefruit. Replace the vodka with tears. The Sex and the City girls would be proud.
  • Gin and Tonic. I call this one the "Hot Air Balloon." Mix a typical gin and tonic, but replace the tonic water with air. Then place two slices of lime with a slice of lemon in-between on the rim to mimic the pattern of a balloon.
  • Manhattan. Blindfold the dieter and drive him to Times Square. Drop the dieter off, throw a shot of whiskey in his face, and make him run home.

As you can see, accommodating the needs of a dieter can be simple. And remember: there's a good chance that the dieter is hungry and consuming drinks on an empty stomach. Just be warned.

Meg Favreau is a writer and comedian living in Philadelphia, PA. Read her blog at www.ihearyoulikestories.com.

Plymouth Gin - Midtown Mule

This is the latest cocktail creation by NYC Insieme Restaurant's bartender Marshall Altier. His most recent creation appropriately named the Midtown Mule is an ideal and refreshing way to end a hot summer day or transition to warm fall evenings. Altier plays on two very popular trends present in the cocktail world - the resurgence of gin-based cocktails as well as the use of vegetables in drinks. The all star combination makes the Midtown Mule an excellent addition to the thriving cocktail culture in New York City.

  • 1/6 cucumber (sliced into coins)
  • 2 oz. Plymouth Gin
  • 1oz. fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 oz. cardamom syrup*
  • 1/2 oz. Cointreau

Place cucumber slices and cardamon syrup in a tin and muddle to paste. Pour in remaining ingredients and shake. Pour over fresh ice in a collins glass and top with ginger beer. Garnish with a wedge of lime and 2 cucumber slices.

To produce Cardamom Syrup:

Steep 2 Tbsp. of black Cardamom pods in hot water. Combine the pods with equal parts sugar and water and steep until consistent. Cool mixture and bottle for later use.

Created by Marshall Altier at Insieme
777 7th Ave
New York, NY 10019
(212) 582-1310


Gallery: Celebrate National Bourbon Heritage Month with These 6 Expert Recipes - Recipes

Well, after a long summer of mixed weather, great times and plenty of new drinks, it's the month for all those in school to return to the classroom. Good luck!

Oh yeah, it's also Bourbon Heritage Month so you may find a few things bourbon as well.

We've stuffed this month full of new content, a new writer and some great new recipes. The Raven also introduces our Tales of the Cocktail swag contest where you can win a collection of stuff we picked up. Check out his article below. We hope you enjoy this month's edition.

We've also implemented a RSS feed to update you on all the latest entries to the database. You can find the page here.

Please be smart, don't drink and drive! Enjoy the following recipes in moderation and take a cab if you need one.

Hendrick's Gin - The Highland Berry

  • 1 oz. Hendrick's Gin
  • 1/2 oz. black raspberry liqueur
  • 3 oz. cranberry juice
  • 2 oz. tonic water
  • cranberries for garnish

Add Hendrick's Gin, black raspberry liqueur and cranberry juice into a shaker. Stir and shake well. Strain into cocktail glass and top with tonic water and garnish with frozen cranberries. Add ice if desire.

My friends, I have a problem. You see, a few weeks back I went to this little industry event in New Orleans called Tales of the Cocktail maybe you've heard of it (or maybe you've been living under a rock and not reading my articles). In any case, like at all great events, our contingent was able to gather a truly offensive amount of swag (which I'll thank the writers of The Office for clearing up for me: Stuff We All Get!) Herein lies my problem: Dan says I've got to give some of it away. Now, I worked hard to collect this stuff, so I'm not just going to give it away. "Worked hard?" I hear you cry. "What was so hard about collect free stuff?" Just ask my liver.

As it turns out, I've got a contest I've been looking to run for a few months now that was just begging for a prize. Being the intelligent person I am, I put two and two together and got five. well o.k., 25 (work with me here.) Have I piqued your interest? O.k. then, here it goes:

The Raven is throwing a party and needs tunes to keep it going. He is looking for the playlist to beat all playlists. Of course, there are a few restrictions to what he'll play.

  • Each playlist must be exactly 25 songs.
  • This is a drinking song playlist (and a contest on a cocktail site!) All songs must deal with alcohol, drinking, or be traditionally recognized as a drinking song.
  • No more than 7 songs may be from the same genre, and no more than 10 from the same decade.
  • The Raven is eclectic. A great playlist for him will span over 100 years.
  • Playlist order matters! Be sure to give us an explanation and walk us through your playlist.

One entry per person, so get it right the first time. The Raven and Dan (and possibly a few others) will make the final decision as to the winner. Points will be given for creative playlists that have a natural progression, as well as heterogeneity. Be prepared to explain a strange song pick if we don't get it, and you can't justify it, you lose points. Also, classics are called such because they are recognized as great you can use them, but if we get two people with matching lists, you're both disqualified.

All entries must be submitted here by October 18th at midnight. Depending on the number of entries, we will try to have the results by the October newsletter. So what are the prizes?

Lot's of great stuff right? Well, even if you can't tell what it all is, it's still lots of great stuff. There may be more depending on where you are and what other goodies we manage to acquire between now and then. There may even be a second prize, if we really feel that it is deserved.

What? You're still here? The contest wasn't enough for you? You want content as well? You know, I've got a life too! Oh, o.k., I guess I can dig something up. Did'ja hear the news about Budweiser? Bought by the Belgians? Crazy. we'll have to see where that goes.

While out at ToC, I had the chance to try some cachaca (pronounced ka-sha-sa). For those unfamiliar, as I was, cachaca is a type of rum made in Brazil. It differs from straight rum in that the liquor is made entirely from the juice of the crushed sugar cane, and not from any remnant thereof. Having just been introduced to it, I can't claim to know the finer points, but the bottle I got from the fine folks at Sagatiba certainly showed some promise.

(As an aside, I just want everyone to know that I am not 'phoning this in'. It is a little bit after 10 in the morning and I've just poured myself two shots, one of Sagatiba and one of Bacardi in an effort to give you the best possible analysis. I hope you appreciate the sacrifices I make for you.)

Comparably, the two bottles are matched in proof, which is handy in doing comparisons (and which would completely devalue any comparison I'd make otherwise.) The Sagatiba is definitely smoother, with a cleaner taste than the Bacardi, which is expected from any single-ingredient bottle. Of note, the Sagatiba also has a much sweeter bouquet.

I've only had the chance to make one cocktail with the Sagatiba, kind of a Brazilian mojito, which I snagged from an episode of Kevin Brauch's Thirsty Traveler. It was, in a word, delightful. I'll get around to making more, but with work and school starting (MBA here I come! Donations are being accepted!), it might be a little while before I can sit down to a tasting session.

Anyway, it is now time that I get on with life, one can only live the dream of 'professional booze columnist' for so long. Stay cool out there, and send in your playlists!

J.T. "Raven" Centonze has been a long time student of the art of alcohol. Initially interested in keeping conversation at parties, his love for alcohol grew to an obsession in college. In between his real job of running a college bookstore or two, he is the part owner/operator of his own winery. He bartends at private parties which allows him the innovation of many new, unique drinks.

The Raven now has his own e-mail address at the BarNoneDrinks. Please send all questions, comments, and suggestions related "The Raven's Caw" to [email protected]. Also accepted at this address are job offers, death threats, marriage proposals, offers to enlarge certain parts of my anatomy, awards nominations, petitions for absolution and anything else The Raven might need to know about.

Many drink recipes call for fruit juice. While some might find that adding bottled or canned fruit juice works just fine, others swear that using fresh fruit juice makes all the difference between an ok drink and one that is outstanding.

You probably think that juicing fruits is a bit of a hassle. And, sure, it does take a little more time that opening a bottle or popping the top of a can. But, once you get the hang of it, you'll realize that it isn't as hard as you thought, and that the benefits are amazing.

Before you can even think about squeezing your own juice, you need to invest in a juicer. There are several types to choose from. One of the most basic juicers is the manual press variety. This type of juicer is maneuvered by hand and is ideal for soft fruits. A centrifugal juicer shreds or grates the fruits and then spins it to release the juice. The last type of a masticating juicer. As the name suggests, a masticating juicer basically chews the fruit in order to break down its cell walls to create a high fiber juice.

Once you have selected the juicer of your choice, now you need the fruit. Be aware that you will need a fairly large amount of fruit if you want even a glass of fresh juice.

Fruits such as avocado, bananas and strawberries aren't the ideal fruits for juicing, although they do work well for blending in extra flavors. These types of fruits contain small amounts of water, so they won't yield much liquid.

When looking for an ideal fruit for juicing, you want to make sure that you choose those that contain large amounts of water. Grapes, pears, apples, peaches, grapefruit, oranges, watermelon, and cantaloupe are all fruits that will juice well and taste great. Softer fruits, such as pears and peaches will produce a thicker juice, often referred to as nectar, and some will even yield a juice that is thick. As a rule of thumb, remember that the softer a certain type of fruit is the thicker its created juice will be.

Once you have run your preferred fruit through your juicer, you may notice that it has a large amount of pulp in it. Some people prefer their juice to have contain this pulp, but others may not like their drink to contain any sort of chunks. If you are among the latter, you can remove the pulp by straining the juiced liquid through a coffee filter or cheesecloth.

Now that you know how about juicers and how to select fruits, you should also learn just how much freshly squeezed juice can benefit your health. Not only can you get your daily allowance of fruits, and often vegetables if you decide to juice them and add them to your drink, you can also add the enzymes and nutrients that you need to your diet. You will also consume a great amount of fiber that can help you to control how quickly your bloodstream absorbs sugar.

Next time you see a recipe that requires fruit juice, or you just have a hankering for a nice tall glass of your favorite juice, don't take the easy route and turn to manufactured products. Juice your own and know that you are getting exactly the taste you want, as well as the healthy benefits your body deserves.

Val, Val Val. What do we say about Val? I can say that she's been doing a bunch of work for us here at Bar None for the last few months, but most of it site related, not for our newsletter. However, I think she'll start becoming a regular feature here so we hope you enjoy her writing from some little place called Hoboken or was it Halifax? Hmm, maybe it was Hammonton. Wherever it was, she's doing a fine job and we're happy to have her aboard.

Summer Smash

  • 2 parts Absolut Citron
  • 1 part Lime And Lemongrass Cordial
  • 1 part Melon Liqueur
  • Passionfruit Juice
  • Lime
  • Mint Leaf
  • Orange

Fill a highball glass to the rim with ice cubes. Pour Absolut Citron, lime and lemongrass cordial and melon liqueur into a shaker. Fill the shaker with ice cubes and shake it until the shaker is very cold. Strain the drink into the highball glass. Top up with passionfruit juice. Garnish with a lime (peel), a mint leaf (leaf) and an orange (slice).

Anejo Kiss

  • 1 1/2 oz. Partida Anejo Tequila
  • 1 oz. Amarula Cream Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz. White Creme de Cacao

Shake and strain into a martini glass. Andre Cassagne, Ortinaque on the Mile, Miami

Like taxes and people who gasp "Oh, I can't drink that!" when you say you like tequila, dieters are inevitable. They'll sneak into your house or your bar, acting normal until you ask what they're drinking. Suddenly, the dieters are full of requests: do you have diet tonic water? How many calories are in the well rum? Can you replace the martini olives with something a little less fattening, like garlic-stuffed multivitamins?

Unfortunately, telling a dieter that he should just consume regular cocktails in moderation doesn't usually work. Thus, whether you're a professional bartender or just an accommodating host or hostess, it's important to be able to make a few diet drinks. Mostly you can get away with knowing the basics: dark beers, like stouts, generally have fewer calories than light ones like wheat beers. Any cocktail mixed with cream will have a high calorie count, and anything with fresh fruit will be relatively low. If a dieter is looking for something warm and comforting like coffee with Bailey's, he'll generally be happy with a Hot Toddy instead.

But there are also a number of substitutions you can make when crafting drinks for dieters. Consider making one of these updated cocktails:

  • Whiskey Sour. Commercial sours mix is often filled with sugar and nasty additives. Instead of using such a mix, prepare a whiskey sour by floating a single "Atomic Warhead" sour candy on top of a shot of Maker's Mark.
  • White-Chocolate Raspberry Martini. The first substitution to this drink should be obvious: replace the raspberry liqueur with delicious and healthy fresh raspberries. The texture of Godiva White Chocolate Liqueur, meanwhile, can be replaced with skim milk. Finally, replace the vodka with water. I call this "Raspberry Milk Water." If you're worried that the alcohol content is too minimal, let the mix sit behind a radiator in a plastic bag for a few weeks until it ferments.
  • Pomegranate Cosmopolitan. A great diet replacement for this cocktail can be made with new "low-cal" beers. Replace the pomegranate juice with Michelob ULTRA Pomegranate Raspberry. Replace the lime juice with Michelob ULTRA Lime Cactus. Replace the triple sec with Michelob ULTRA Tuscan Orange Grapefruit. Replace the vodka with tears. The Sex and the City girls would be proud.
  • Gin and Tonic. I call this one the "Hot Air Balloon." Mix a typical gin and tonic, but replace the tonic water with air. Then place two slices of lime with a slice of lemon in-between on the rim to mimic the pattern of a balloon.
  • Manhattan. Blindfold the dieter and drive him to Times Square. Drop the dieter off, throw a shot of whiskey in his face, and make him run home.

As you can see, accommodating the needs of a dieter can be simple. And remember: there's a good chance that the dieter is hungry and consuming drinks on an empty stomach. Just be warned.

Meg Favreau is a writer and comedian living in Philadelphia, PA. Read her blog at www.ihearyoulikestories.com.

Plymouth Gin - Midtown Mule

This is the latest cocktail creation by NYC Insieme Restaurant's bartender Marshall Altier. His most recent creation appropriately named the Midtown Mule is an ideal and refreshing way to end a hot summer day or transition to warm fall evenings. Altier plays on two very popular trends present in the cocktail world - the resurgence of gin-based cocktails as well as the use of vegetables in drinks. The all star combination makes the Midtown Mule an excellent addition to the thriving cocktail culture in New York City.

  • 1/6 cucumber (sliced into coins)
  • 2 oz. Plymouth Gin
  • 1oz. fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 oz. cardamom syrup*
  • 1/2 oz. Cointreau

Place cucumber slices and cardamon syrup in a tin and muddle to paste. Pour in remaining ingredients and shake. Pour over fresh ice in a collins glass and top with ginger beer. Garnish with a wedge of lime and 2 cucumber slices.

To produce Cardamom Syrup:

Steep 2 Tbsp. of black Cardamom pods in hot water. Combine the pods with equal parts sugar and water and steep until consistent. Cool mixture and bottle for later use.

Created by Marshall Altier at Insieme
777 7th Ave
New York, NY 10019
(212) 582-1310


Gallery: Celebrate National Bourbon Heritage Month with These 6 Expert Recipes - Recipes

Well, after a long summer of mixed weather, great times and plenty of new drinks, it's the month for all those in school to return to the classroom. Good luck!

Oh yeah, it's also Bourbon Heritage Month so you may find a few things bourbon as well.

We've stuffed this month full of new content, a new writer and some great new recipes. The Raven also introduces our Tales of the Cocktail swag contest where you can win a collection of stuff we picked up. Check out his article below. We hope you enjoy this month's edition.

We've also implemented a RSS feed to update you on all the latest entries to the database. You can find the page here.

Please be smart, don't drink and drive! Enjoy the following recipes in moderation and take a cab if you need one.

Hendrick's Gin - The Highland Berry

  • 1 oz. Hendrick's Gin
  • 1/2 oz. black raspberry liqueur
  • 3 oz. cranberry juice
  • 2 oz. tonic water
  • cranberries for garnish

Add Hendrick's Gin, black raspberry liqueur and cranberry juice into a shaker. Stir and shake well. Strain into cocktail glass and top with tonic water and garnish with frozen cranberries. Add ice if desire.

My friends, I have a problem. You see, a few weeks back I went to this little industry event in New Orleans called Tales of the Cocktail maybe you've heard of it (or maybe you've been living under a rock and not reading my articles). In any case, like at all great events, our contingent was able to gather a truly offensive amount of swag (which I'll thank the writers of The Office for clearing up for me: Stuff We All Get!) Herein lies my problem: Dan says I've got to give some of it away. Now, I worked hard to collect this stuff, so I'm not just going to give it away. "Worked hard?" I hear you cry. "What was so hard about collect free stuff?" Just ask my liver.

As it turns out, I've got a contest I've been looking to run for a few months now that was just begging for a prize. Being the intelligent person I am, I put two and two together and got five. well o.k., 25 (work with me here.) Have I piqued your interest? O.k. then, here it goes:

The Raven is throwing a party and needs tunes to keep it going. He is looking for the playlist to beat all playlists. Of course, there are a few restrictions to what he'll play.

  • Each playlist must be exactly 25 songs.
  • This is a drinking song playlist (and a contest on a cocktail site!) All songs must deal with alcohol, drinking, or be traditionally recognized as a drinking song.
  • No more than 7 songs may be from the same genre, and no more than 10 from the same decade.
  • The Raven is eclectic. A great playlist for him will span over 100 years.
  • Playlist order matters! Be sure to give us an explanation and walk us through your playlist.

One entry per person, so get it right the first time. The Raven and Dan (and possibly a few others) will make the final decision as to the winner. Points will be given for creative playlists that have a natural progression, as well as heterogeneity. Be prepared to explain a strange song pick if we don't get it, and you can't justify it, you lose points. Also, classics are called such because they are recognized as great you can use them, but if we get two people with matching lists, you're both disqualified.

All entries must be submitted here by October 18th at midnight. Depending on the number of entries, we will try to have the results by the October newsletter. So what are the prizes?

Lot's of great stuff right? Well, even if you can't tell what it all is, it's still lots of great stuff. There may be more depending on where you are and what other goodies we manage to acquire between now and then. There may even be a second prize, if we really feel that it is deserved.

What? You're still here? The contest wasn't enough for you? You want content as well? You know, I've got a life too! Oh, o.k., I guess I can dig something up. Did'ja hear the news about Budweiser? Bought by the Belgians? Crazy. we'll have to see where that goes.

While out at ToC, I had the chance to try some cachaca (pronounced ka-sha-sa). For those unfamiliar, as I was, cachaca is a type of rum made in Brazil. It differs from straight rum in that the liquor is made entirely from the juice of the crushed sugar cane, and not from any remnant thereof. Having just been introduced to it, I can't claim to know the finer points, but the bottle I got from the fine folks at Sagatiba certainly showed some promise.

(As an aside, I just want everyone to know that I am not 'phoning this in'. It is a little bit after 10 in the morning and I've just poured myself two shots, one of Sagatiba and one of Bacardi in an effort to give you the best possible analysis. I hope you appreciate the sacrifices I make for you.)

Comparably, the two bottles are matched in proof, which is handy in doing comparisons (and which would completely devalue any comparison I'd make otherwise.) The Sagatiba is definitely smoother, with a cleaner taste than the Bacardi, which is expected from any single-ingredient bottle. Of note, the Sagatiba also has a much sweeter bouquet.

I've only had the chance to make one cocktail with the Sagatiba, kind of a Brazilian mojito, which I snagged from an episode of Kevin Brauch's Thirsty Traveler. It was, in a word, delightful. I'll get around to making more, but with work and school starting (MBA here I come! Donations are being accepted!), it might be a little while before I can sit down to a tasting session.

Anyway, it is now time that I get on with life, one can only live the dream of 'professional booze columnist' for so long. Stay cool out there, and send in your playlists!

J.T. "Raven" Centonze has been a long time student of the art of alcohol. Initially interested in keeping conversation at parties, his love for alcohol grew to an obsession in college. In between his real job of running a college bookstore or two, he is the part owner/operator of his own winery. He bartends at private parties which allows him the innovation of many new, unique drinks.

The Raven now has his own e-mail address at the BarNoneDrinks. Please send all questions, comments, and suggestions related "The Raven's Caw" to [email protected]. Also accepted at this address are job offers, death threats, marriage proposals, offers to enlarge certain parts of my anatomy, awards nominations, petitions for absolution and anything else The Raven might need to know about.

Many drink recipes call for fruit juice. While some might find that adding bottled or canned fruit juice works just fine, others swear that using fresh fruit juice makes all the difference between an ok drink and one that is outstanding.

You probably think that juicing fruits is a bit of a hassle. And, sure, it does take a little more time that opening a bottle or popping the top of a can. But, once you get the hang of it, you'll realize that it isn't as hard as you thought, and that the benefits are amazing.

Before you can even think about squeezing your own juice, you need to invest in a juicer. There are several types to choose from. One of the most basic juicers is the manual press variety. This type of juicer is maneuvered by hand and is ideal for soft fruits. A centrifugal juicer shreds or grates the fruits and then spins it to release the juice. The last type of a masticating juicer. As the name suggests, a masticating juicer basically chews the fruit in order to break down its cell walls to create a high fiber juice.

Once you have selected the juicer of your choice, now you need the fruit. Be aware that you will need a fairly large amount of fruit if you want even a glass of fresh juice.

Fruits such as avocado, bananas and strawberries aren't the ideal fruits for juicing, although they do work well for blending in extra flavors. These types of fruits contain small amounts of water, so they won't yield much liquid.

When looking for an ideal fruit for juicing, you want to make sure that you choose those that contain large amounts of water. Grapes, pears, apples, peaches, grapefruit, oranges, watermelon, and cantaloupe are all fruits that will juice well and taste great. Softer fruits, such as pears and peaches will produce a thicker juice, often referred to as nectar, and some will even yield a juice that is thick. As a rule of thumb, remember that the softer a certain type of fruit is the thicker its created juice will be.

Once you have run your preferred fruit through your juicer, you may notice that it has a large amount of pulp in it. Some people prefer their juice to have contain this pulp, but others may not like their drink to contain any sort of chunks. If you are among the latter, you can remove the pulp by straining the juiced liquid through a coffee filter or cheesecloth.

Now that you know how about juicers and how to select fruits, you should also learn just how much freshly squeezed juice can benefit your health. Not only can you get your daily allowance of fruits, and often vegetables if you decide to juice them and add them to your drink, you can also add the enzymes and nutrients that you need to your diet. You will also consume a great amount of fiber that can help you to control how quickly your bloodstream absorbs sugar.

Next time you see a recipe that requires fruit juice, or you just have a hankering for a nice tall glass of your favorite juice, don't take the easy route and turn to manufactured products. Juice your own and know that you are getting exactly the taste you want, as well as the healthy benefits your body deserves.

Val, Val Val. What do we say about Val? I can say that she's been doing a bunch of work for us here at Bar None for the last few months, but most of it site related, not for our newsletter. However, I think she'll start becoming a regular feature here so we hope you enjoy her writing from some little place called Hoboken or was it Halifax? Hmm, maybe it was Hammonton. Wherever it was, she's doing a fine job and we're happy to have her aboard.

Summer Smash

  • 2 parts Absolut Citron
  • 1 part Lime And Lemongrass Cordial
  • 1 part Melon Liqueur
  • Passionfruit Juice
  • Lime
  • Mint Leaf
  • Orange

Fill a highball glass to the rim with ice cubes. Pour Absolut Citron, lime and lemongrass cordial and melon liqueur into a shaker. Fill the shaker with ice cubes and shake it until the shaker is very cold. Strain the drink into the highball glass. Top up with passionfruit juice. Garnish with a lime (peel), a mint leaf (leaf) and an orange (slice).

Anejo Kiss

  • 1 1/2 oz. Partida Anejo Tequila
  • 1 oz. Amarula Cream Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz. White Creme de Cacao

Shake and strain into a martini glass. Andre Cassagne, Ortinaque on the Mile, Miami

Like taxes and people who gasp "Oh, I can't drink that!" when you say you like tequila, dieters are inevitable. They'll sneak into your house or your bar, acting normal until you ask what they're drinking. Suddenly, the dieters are full of requests: do you have diet tonic water? How many calories are in the well rum? Can you replace the martini olives with something a little less fattening, like garlic-stuffed multivitamins?

Unfortunately, telling a dieter that he should just consume regular cocktails in moderation doesn't usually work. Thus, whether you're a professional bartender or just an accommodating host or hostess, it's important to be able to make a few diet drinks. Mostly you can get away with knowing the basics: dark beers, like stouts, generally have fewer calories than light ones like wheat beers. Any cocktail mixed with cream will have a high calorie count, and anything with fresh fruit will be relatively low. If a dieter is looking for something warm and comforting like coffee with Bailey's, he'll generally be happy with a Hot Toddy instead.

But there are also a number of substitutions you can make when crafting drinks for dieters. Consider making one of these updated cocktails:

  • Whiskey Sour. Commercial sours mix is often filled with sugar and nasty additives. Instead of using such a mix, prepare a whiskey sour by floating a single "Atomic Warhead" sour candy on top of a shot of Maker's Mark.
  • White-Chocolate Raspberry Martini. The first substitution to this drink should be obvious: replace the raspberry liqueur with delicious and healthy fresh raspberries. The texture of Godiva White Chocolate Liqueur, meanwhile, can be replaced with skim milk. Finally, replace the vodka with water. I call this "Raspberry Milk Water." If you're worried that the alcohol content is too minimal, let the mix sit behind a radiator in a plastic bag for a few weeks until it ferments.
  • Pomegranate Cosmopolitan. A great diet replacement for this cocktail can be made with new "low-cal" beers. Replace the pomegranate juice with Michelob ULTRA Pomegranate Raspberry. Replace the lime juice with Michelob ULTRA Lime Cactus. Replace the triple sec with Michelob ULTRA Tuscan Orange Grapefruit. Replace the vodka with tears. The Sex and the City girls would be proud.
  • Gin and Tonic. I call this one the "Hot Air Balloon." Mix a typical gin and tonic, but replace the tonic water with air. Then place two slices of lime with a slice of lemon in-between on the rim to mimic the pattern of a balloon.
  • Manhattan. Blindfold the dieter and drive him to Times Square. Drop the dieter off, throw a shot of whiskey in his face, and make him run home.

As you can see, accommodating the needs of a dieter can be simple. And remember: there's a good chance that the dieter is hungry and consuming drinks on an empty stomach. Just be warned.

Meg Favreau is a writer and comedian living in Philadelphia, PA. Read her blog at www.ihearyoulikestories.com.

Plymouth Gin - Midtown Mule

This is the latest cocktail creation by NYC Insieme Restaurant's bartender Marshall Altier. His most recent creation appropriately named the Midtown Mule is an ideal and refreshing way to end a hot summer day or transition to warm fall evenings. Altier plays on two very popular trends present in the cocktail world - the resurgence of gin-based cocktails as well as the use of vegetables in drinks. The all star combination makes the Midtown Mule an excellent addition to the thriving cocktail culture in New York City.

  • 1/6 cucumber (sliced into coins)
  • 2 oz. Plymouth Gin
  • 1oz. fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 oz. cardamom syrup*
  • 1/2 oz. Cointreau

Place cucumber slices and cardamon syrup in a tin and muddle to paste. Pour in remaining ingredients and shake. Pour over fresh ice in a collins glass and top with ginger beer. Garnish with a wedge of lime and 2 cucumber slices.

To produce Cardamom Syrup:

Steep 2 Tbsp. of black Cardamom pods in hot water. Combine the pods with equal parts sugar and water and steep until consistent. Cool mixture and bottle for later use.

Created by Marshall Altier at Insieme
777 7th Ave
New York, NY 10019
(212) 582-1310


Gallery: Celebrate National Bourbon Heritage Month with These 6 Expert Recipes - Recipes

Well, after a long summer of mixed weather, great times and plenty of new drinks, it's the month for all those in school to return to the classroom. Good luck!

Oh yeah, it's also Bourbon Heritage Month so you may find a few things bourbon as well.

We've stuffed this month full of new content, a new writer and some great new recipes. The Raven also introduces our Tales of the Cocktail swag contest where you can win a collection of stuff we picked up. Check out his article below. We hope you enjoy this month's edition.

We've also implemented a RSS feed to update you on all the latest entries to the database. You can find the page here.

Please be smart, don't drink and drive! Enjoy the following recipes in moderation and take a cab if you need one.

Hendrick's Gin - The Highland Berry

  • 1 oz. Hendrick's Gin
  • 1/2 oz. black raspberry liqueur
  • 3 oz. cranberry juice
  • 2 oz. tonic water
  • cranberries for garnish

Add Hendrick's Gin, black raspberry liqueur and cranberry juice into a shaker. Stir and shake well. Strain into cocktail glass and top with tonic water and garnish with frozen cranberries. Add ice if desire.

My friends, I have a problem. You see, a few weeks back I went to this little industry event in New Orleans called Tales of the Cocktail maybe you've heard of it (or maybe you've been living under a rock and not reading my articles). In any case, like at all great events, our contingent was able to gather a truly offensive amount of swag (which I'll thank the writers of The Office for clearing up for me: Stuff We All Get!) Herein lies my problem: Dan says I've got to give some of it away. Now, I worked hard to collect this stuff, so I'm not just going to give it away. "Worked hard?" I hear you cry. "What was so hard about collect free stuff?" Just ask my liver.

As it turns out, I've got a contest I've been looking to run for a few months now that was just begging for a prize. Being the intelligent person I am, I put two and two together and got five. well o.k., 25 (work with me here.) Have I piqued your interest? O.k. then, here it goes:

The Raven is throwing a party and needs tunes to keep it going. He is looking for the playlist to beat all playlists. Of course, there are a few restrictions to what he'll play.

  • Each playlist must be exactly 25 songs.
  • This is a drinking song playlist (and a contest on a cocktail site!) All songs must deal with alcohol, drinking, or be traditionally recognized as a drinking song.
  • No more than 7 songs may be from the same genre, and no more than 10 from the same decade.
  • The Raven is eclectic. A great playlist for him will span over 100 years.
  • Playlist order matters! Be sure to give us an explanation and walk us through your playlist.

One entry per person, so get it right the first time. The Raven and Dan (and possibly a few others) will make the final decision as to the winner. Points will be given for creative playlists that have a natural progression, as well as heterogeneity. Be prepared to explain a strange song pick if we don't get it, and you can't justify it, you lose points. Also, classics are called such because they are recognized as great you can use them, but if we get two people with matching lists, you're both disqualified.

All entries must be submitted here by October 18th at midnight. Depending on the number of entries, we will try to have the results by the October newsletter. So what are the prizes?

Lot's of great stuff right? Well, even if you can't tell what it all is, it's still lots of great stuff. There may be more depending on where you are and what other goodies we manage to acquire between now and then. There may even be a second prize, if we really feel that it is deserved.

What? You're still here? The contest wasn't enough for you? You want content as well? You know, I've got a life too! Oh, o.k., I guess I can dig something up. Did'ja hear the news about Budweiser? Bought by the Belgians? Crazy. we'll have to see where that goes.

While out at ToC, I had the chance to try some cachaca (pronounced ka-sha-sa). For those unfamiliar, as I was, cachaca is a type of rum made in Brazil. It differs from straight rum in that the liquor is made entirely from the juice of the crushed sugar cane, and not from any remnant thereof. Having just been introduced to it, I can't claim to know the finer points, but the bottle I got from the fine folks at Sagatiba certainly showed some promise.

(As an aside, I just want everyone to know that I am not 'phoning this in'. It is a little bit after 10 in the morning and I've just poured myself two shots, one of Sagatiba and one of Bacardi in an effort to give you the best possible analysis. I hope you appreciate the sacrifices I make for you.)

Comparably, the two bottles are matched in proof, which is handy in doing comparisons (and which would completely devalue any comparison I'd make otherwise.) The Sagatiba is definitely smoother, with a cleaner taste than the Bacardi, which is expected from any single-ingredient bottle. Of note, the Sagatiba also has a much sweeter bouquet.

I've only had the chance to make one cocktail with the Sagatiba, kind of a Brazilian mojito, which I snagged from an episode of Kevin Brauch's Thirsty Traveler. It was, in a word, delightful. I'll get around to making more, but with work and school starting (MBA here I come! Donations are being accepted!), it might be a little while before I can sit down to a tasting session.

Anyway, it is now time that I get on with life, one can only live the dream of 'professional booze columnist' for so long. Stay cool out there, and send in your playlists!

J.T. "Raven" Centonze has been a long time student of the art of alcohol. Initially interested in keeping conversation at parties, his love for alcohol grew to an obsession in college. In between his real job of running a college bookstore or two, he is the part owner/operator of his own winery. He bartends at private parties which allows him the innovation of many new, unique drinks.

The Raven now has his own e-mail address at the BarNoneDrinks. Please send all questions, comments, and suggestions related "The Raven's Caw" to [email protected]. Also accepted at this address are job offers, death threats, marriage proposals, offers to enlarge certain parts of my anatomy, awards nominations, petitions for absolution and anything else The Raven might need to know about.

Many drink recipes call for fruit juice. While some might find that adding bottled or canned fruit juice works just fine, others swear that using fresh fruit juice makes all the difference between an ok drink and one that is outstanding.

You probably think that juicing fruits is a bit of a hassle. And, sure, it does take a little more time that opening a bottle or popping the top of a can. But, once you get the hang of it, you'll realize that it isn't as hard as you thought, and that the benefits are amazing.

Before you can even think about squeezing your own juice, you need to invest in a juicer. There are several types to choose from. One of the most basic juicers is the manual press variety. This type of juicer is maneuvered by hand and is ideal for soft fruits. A centrifugal juicer shreds or grates the fruits and then spins it to release the juice. The last type of a masticating juicer. As the name suggests, a masticating juicer basically chews the fruit in order to break down its cell walls to create a high fiber juice.

Once you have selected the juicer of your choice, now you need the fruit. Be aware that you will need a fairly large amount of fruit if you want even a glass of fresh juice.

Fruits such as avocado, bananas and strawberries aren't the ideal fruits for juicing, although they do work well for blending in extra flavors. These types of fruits contain small amounts of water, so they won't yield much liquid.

When looking for an ideal fruit for juicing, you want to make sure that you choose those that contain large amounts of water. Grapes, pears, apples, peaches, grapefruit, oranges, watermelon, and cantaloupe are all fruits that will juice well and taste great. Softer fruits, such as pears and peaches will produce a thicker juice, often referred to as nectar, and some will even yield a juice that is thick. As a rule of thumb, remember that the softer a certain type of fruit is the thicker its created juice will be.

Once you have run your preferred fruit through your juicer, you may notice that it has a large amount of pulp in it. Some people prefer their juice to have contain this pulp, but others may not like their drink to contain any sort of chunks. If you are among the latter, you can remove the pulp by straining the juiced liquid through a coffee filter or cheesecloth.

Now that you know how about juicers and how to select fruits, you should also learn just how much freshly squeezed juice can benefit your health. Not only can you get your daily allowance of fruits, and often vegetables if you decide to juice them and add them to your drink, you can also add the enzymes and nutrients that you need to your diet. You will also consume a great amount of fiber that can help you to control how quickly your bloodstream absorbs sugar.

Next time you see a recipe that requires fruit juice, or you just have a hankering for a nice tall glass of your favorite juice, don't take the easy route and turn to manufactured products. Juice your own and know that you are getting exactly the taste you want, as well as the healthy benefits your body deserves.

Val, Val Val. What do we say about Val? I can say that she's been doing a bunch of work for us here at Bar None for the last few months, but most of it site related, not for our newsletter. However, I think she'll start becoming a regular feature here so we hope you enjoy her writing from some little place called Hoboken or was it Halifax? Hmm, maybe it was Hammonton. Wherever it was, she's doing a fine job and we're happy to have her aboard.

Summer Smash

  • 2 parts Absolut Citron
  • 1 part Lime And Lemongrass Cordial
  • 1 part Melon Liqueur
  • Passionfruit Juice
  • Lime
  • Mint Leaf
  • Orange

Fill a highball glass to the rim with ice cubes. Pour Absolut Citron, lime and lemongrass cordial and melon liqueur into a shaker. Fill the shaker with ice cubes and shake it until the shaker is very cold. Strain the drink into the highball glass. Top up with passionfruit juice. Garnish with a lime (peel), a mint leaf (leaf) and an orange (slice).

Anejo Kiss

  • 1 1/2 oz. Partida Anejo Tequila
  • 1 oz. Amarula Cream Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz. White Creme de Cacao

Shake and strain into a martini glass. Andre Cassagne, Ortinaque on the Mile, Miami

Like taxes and people who gasp "Oh, I can't drink that!" when you say you like tequila, dieters are inevitable. They'll sneak into your house or your bar, acting normal until you ask what they're drinking. Suddenly, the dieters are full of requests: do you have diet tonic water? How many calories are in the well rum? Can you replace the martini olives with something a little less fattening, like garlic-stuffed multivitamins?

Unfortunately, telling a dieter that he should just consume regular cocktails in moderation doesn't usually work. Thus, whether you're a professional bartender or just an accommodating host or hostess, it's important to be able to make a few diet drinks. Mostly you can get away with knowing the basics: dark beers, like stouts, generally have fewer calories than light ones like wheat beers. Any cocktail mixed with cream will have a high calorie count, and anything with fresh fruit will be relatively low. If a dieter is looking for something warm and comforting like coffee with Bailey's, he'll generally be happy with a Hot Toddy instead.

But there are also a number of substitutions you can make when crafting drinks for dieters. Consider making one of these updated cocktails:

  • Whiskey Sour. Commercial sours mix is often filled with sugar and nasty additives. Instead of using such a mix, prepare a whiskey sour by floating a single "Atomic Warhead" sour candy on top of a shot of Maker's Mark.
  • White-Chocolate Raspberry Martini. The first substitution to this drink should be obvious: replace the raspberry liqueur with delicious and healthy fresh raspberries. The texture of Godiva White Chocolate Liqueur, meanwhile, can be replaced with skim milk. Finally, replace the vodka with water. I call this "Raspberry Milk Water." If you're worried that the alcohol content is too minimal, let the mix sit behind a radiator in a plastic bag for a few weeks until it ferments.
  • Pomegranate Cosmopolitan. A great diet replacement for this cocktail can be made with new "low-cal" beers. Replace the pomegranate juice with Michelob ULTRA Pomegranate Raspberry. Replace the lime juice with Michelob ULTRA Lime Cactus. Replace the triple sec with Michelob ULTRA Tuscan Orange Grapefruit. Replace the vodka with tears. The Sex and the City girls would be proud.
  • Gin and Tonic. I call this one the "Hot Air Balloon." Mix a typical gin and tonic, but replace the tonic water with air. Then place two slices of lime with a slice of lemon in-between on the rim to mimic the pattern of a balloon.
  • Manhattan. Blindfold the dieter and drive him to Times Square. Drop the dieter off, throw a shot of whiskey in his face, and make him run home.

As you can see, accommodating the needs of a dieter can be simple. And remember: there's a good chance that the dieter is hungry and consuming drinks on an empty stomach. Just be warned.

Meg Favreau is a writer and comedian living in Philadelphia, PA. Read her blog at www.ihearyoulikestories.com.

Plymouth Gin - Midtown Mule

This is the latest cocktail creation by NYC Insieme Restaurant's bartender Marshall Altier. His most recent creation appropriately named the Midtown Mule is an ideal and refreshing way to end a hot summer day or transition to warm fall evenings. Altier plays on two very popular trends present in the cocktail world - the resurgence of gin-based cocktails as well as the use of vegetables in drinks. The all star combination makes the Midtown Mule an excellent addition to the thriving cocktail culture in New York City.

  • 1/6 cucumber (sliced into coins)
  • 2 oz. Plymouth Gin
  • 1oz. fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 oz. cardamom syrup*
  • 1/2 oz. Cointreau

Place cucumber slices and cardamon syrup in a tin and muddle to paste. Pour in remaining ingredients and shake. Pour over fresh ice in a collins glass and top with ginger beer. Garnish with a wedge of lime and 2 cucumber slices.

To produce Cardamom Syrup:

Steep 2 Tbsp. of black Cardamom pods in hot water. Combine the pods with equal parts sugar and water and steep until consistent. Cool mixture and bottle for later use.

Created by Marshall Altier at Insieme
777 7th Ave
New York, NY 10019
(212) 582-1310


Gallery: Celebrate National Bourbon Heritage Month with These 6 Expert Recipes - Recipes

Well, after a long summer of mixed weather, great times and plenty of new drinks, it's the month for all those in school to return to the classroom. Good luck!

Oh yeah, it's also Bourbon Heritage Month so you may find a few things bourbon as well.

We've stuffed this month full of new content, a new writer and some great new recipes. The Raven also introduces our Tales of the Cocktail swag contest where you can win a collection of stuff we picked up. Check out his article below. We hope you enjoy this month's edition.

We've also implemented a RSS feed to update you on all the latest entries to the database. You can find the page here.

Please be smart, don't drink and drive! Enjoy the following recipes in moderation and take a cab if you need one.

Hendrick's Gin - The Highland Berry

  • 1 oz. Hendrick's Gin
  • 1/2 oz. black raspberry liqueur
  • 3 oz. cranberry juice
  • 2 oz. tonic water
  • cranberries for garnish

Add Hendrick's Gin, black raspberry liqueur and cranberry juice into a shaker. Stir and shake well. Strain into cocktail glass and top with tonic water and garnish with frozen cranberries. Add ice if desire.

My friends, I have a problem. You see, a few weeks back I went to this little industry event in New Orleans called Tales of the Cocktail maybe you've heard of it (or maybe you've been living under a rock and not reading my articles). In any case, like at all great events, our contingent was able to gather a truly offensive amount of swag (which I'll thank the writers of The Office for clearing up for me: Stuff We All Get!) Herein lies my problem: Dan says I've got to give some of it away. Now, I worked hard to collect this stuff, so I'm not just going to give it away. "Worked hard?" I hear you cry. "What was so hard about collect free stuff?" Just ask my liver.

As it turns out, I've got a contest I've been looking to run for a few months now that was just begging for a prize. Being the intelligent person I am, I put two and two together and got five. well o.k., 25 (work with me here.) Have I piqued your interest? O.k. then, here it goes:

The Raven is throwing a party and needs tunes to keep it going. He is looking for the playlist to beat all playlists. Of course, there are a few restrictions to what he'll play.

  • Each playlist must be exactly 25 songs.
  • This is a drinking song playlist (and a contest on a cocktail site!) All songs must deal with alcohol, drinking, or be traditionally recognized as a drinking song.
  • No more than 7 songs may be from the same genre, and no more than 10 from the same decade.
  • The Raven is eclectic. A great playlist for him will span over 100 years.
  • Playlist order matters! Be sure to give us an explanation and walk us through your playlist.

One entry per person, so get it right the first time. The Raven and Dan (and possibly a few others) will make the final decision as to the winner. Points will be given for creative playlists that have a natural progression, as well as heterogeneity. Be prepared to explain a strange song pick if we don't get it, and you can't justify it, you lose points. Also, classics are called such because they are recognized as great you can use them, but if we get two people with matching lists, you're both disqualified.

All entries must be submitted here by October 18th at midnight. Depending on the number of entries, we will try to have the results by the October newsletter. So what are the prizes?

Lot's of great stuff right? Well, even if you can't tell what it all is, it's still lots of great stuff. There may be more depending on where you are and what other goodies we manage to acquire between now and then. There may even be a second prize, if we really feel that it is deserved.

What? You're still here? The contest wasn't enough for you? You want content as well? You know, I've got a life too! Oh, o.k., I guess I can dig something up. Did'ja hear the news about Budweiser? Bought by the Belgians? Crazy. we'll have to see where that goes.

While out at ToC, I had the chance to try some cachaca (pronounced ka-sha-sa). For those unfamiliar, as I was, cachaca is a type of rum made in Brazil. It differs from straight rum in that the liquor is made entirely from the juice of the crushed sugar cane, and not from any remnant thereof. Having just been introduced to it, I can't claim to know the finer points, but the bottle I got from the fine folks at Sagatiba certainly showed some promise.

(As an aside, I just want everyone to know that I am not 'phoning this in'. It is a little bit after 10 in the morning and I've just poured myself two shots, one of Sagatiba and one of Bacardi in an effort to give you the best possible analysis. I hope you appreciate the sacrifices I make for you.)

Comparably, the two bottles are matched in proof, which is handy in doing comparisons (and which would completely devalue any comparison I'd make otherwise.) The Sagatiba is definitely smoother, with a cleaner taste than the Bacardi, which is expected from any single-ingredient bottle. Of note, the Sagatiba also has a much sweeter bouquet.

I've only had the chance to make one cocktail with the Sagatiba, kind of a Brazilian mojito, which I snagged from an episode of Kevin Brauch's Thirsty Traveler. It was, in a word, delightful. I'll get around to making more, but with work and school starting (MBA here I come! Donations are being accepted!), it might be a little while before I can sit down to a tasting session.

Anyway, it is now time that I get on with life, one can only live the dream of 'professional booze columnist' for so long. Stay cool out there, and send in your playlists!

J.T. "Raven" Centonze has been a long time student of the art of alcohol. Initially interested in keeping conversation at parties, his love for alcohol grew to an obsession in college. In between his real job of running a college bookstore or two, he is the part owner/operator of his own winery. He bartends at private parties which allows him the innovation of many new, unique drinks.

The Raven now has his own e-mail address at the BarNoneDrinks. Please send all questions, comments, and suggestions related "The Raven's Caw" to [email protected]. Also accepted at this address are job offers, death threats, marriage proposals, offers to enlarge certain parts of my anatomy, awards nominations, petitions for absolution and anything else The Raven might need to know about.

Many drink recipes call for fruit juice. While some might find that adding bottled or canned fruit juice works just fine, others swear that using fresh fruit juice makes all the difference between an ok drink and one that is outstanding.

You probably think that juicing fruits is a bit of a hassle. And, sure, it does take a little more time that opening a bottle or popping the top of a can. But, once you get the hang of it, you'll realize that it isn't as hard as you thought, and that the benefits are amazing.

Before you can even think about squeezing your own juice, you need to invest in a juicer. There are several types to choose from. One of the most basic juicers is the manual press variety. This type of juicer is maneuvered by hand and is ideal for soft fruits. A centrifugal juicer shreds or grates the fruits and then spins it to release the juice. The last type of a masticating juicer. As the name suggests, a masticating juicer basically chews the fruit in order to break down its cell walls to create a high fiber juice.

Once you have selected the juicer of your choice, now you need the fruit. Be aware that you will need a fairly large amount of fruit if you want even a glass of fresh juice.

Fruits such as avocado, bananas and strawberries aren't the ideal fruits for juicing, although they do work well for blending in extra flavors. These types of fruits contain small amounts of water, so they won't yield much liquid.

When looking for an ideal fruit for juicing, you want to make sure that you choose those that contain large amounts of water. Grapes, pears, apples, peaches, grapefruit, oranges, watermelon, and cantaloupe are all fruits that will juice well and taste great. Softer fruits, such as pears and peaches will produce a thicker juice, often referred to as nectar, and some will even yield a juice that is thick. As a rule of thumb, remember that the softer a certain type of fruit is the thicker its created juice will be.

Once you have run your preferred fruit through your juicer, you may notice that it has a large amount of pulp in it. Some people prefer their juice to have contain this pulp, but others may not like their drink to contain any sort of chunks. If you are among the latter, you can remove the pulp by straining the juiced liquid through a coffee filter or cheesecloth.

Now that you know how about juicers and how to select fruits, you should also learn just how much freshly squeezed juice can benefit your health. Not only can you get your daily allowance of fruits, and often vegetables if you decide to juice them and add them to your drink, you can also add the enzymes and nutrients that you need to your diet. You will also consume a great amount of fiber that can help you to control how quickly your bloodstream absorbs sugar.

Next time you see a recipe that requires fruit juice, or you just have a hankering for a nice tall glass of your favorite juice, don't take the easy route and turn to manufactured products. Juice your own and know that you are getting exactly the taste you want, as well as the healthy benefits your body deserves.

Val, Val Val. What do we say about Val? I can say that she's been doing a bunch of work for us here at Bar None for the last few months, but most of it site related, not for our newsletter. However, I think she'll start becoming a regular feature here so we hope you enjoy her writing from some little place called Hoboken or was it Halifax? Hmm, maybe it was Hammonton. Wherever it was, she's doing a fine job and we're happy to have her aboard.

Summer Smash

  • 2 parts Absolut Citron
  • 1 part Lime And Lemongrass Cordial
  • 1 part Melon Liqueur
  • Passionfruit Juice
  • Lime
  • Mint Leaf
  • Orange

Fill a highball glass to the rim with ice cubes. Pour Absolut Citron, lime and lemongrass cordial and melon liqueur into a shaker. Fill the shaker with ice cubes and shake it until the shaker is very cold. Strain the drink into the highball glass. Top up with passionfruit juice. Garnish with a lime (peel), a mint leaf (leaf) and an orange (slice).

Anejo Kiss

  • 1 1/2 oz. Partida Anejo Tequila
  • 1 oz. Amarula Cream Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz. White Creme de Cacao

Shake and strain into a martini glass. Andre Cassagne, Ortinaque on the Mile, Miami

Like taxes and people who gasp "Oh, I can't drink that!" when you say you like tequila, dieters are inevitable. They'll sneak into your house or your bar, acting normal until you ask what they're drinking. Suddenly, the dieters are full of requests: do you have diet tonic water? How many calories are in the well rum? Can you replace the martini olives with something a little less fattening, like garlic-stuffed multivitamins?

Unfortunately, telling a dieter that he should just consume regular cocktails in moderation doesn't usually work. Thus, whether you're a professional bartender or just an accommodating host or hostess, it's important to be able to make a few diet drinks. Mostly you can get away with knowing the basics: dark beers, like stouts, generally have fewer calories than light ones like wheat beers. Any cocktail mixed with cream will have a high calorie count, and anything with fresh fruit will be relatively low. If a dieter is looking for something warm and comforting like coffee with Bailey's, he'll generally be happy with a Hot Toddy instead.

But there are also a number of substitutions you can make when crafting drinks for dieters. Consider making one of these updated cocktails:

  • Whiskey Sour. Commercial sours mix is often filled with sugar and nasty additives. Instead of using such a mix, prepare a whiskey sour by floating a single "Atomic Warhead" sour candy on top of a shot of Maker's Mark.
  • White-Chocolate Raspberry Martini. The first substitution to this drink should be obvious: replace the raspberry liqueur with delicious and healthy fresh raspberries. The texture of Godiva White Chocolate Liqueur, meanwhile, can be replaced with skim milk. Finally, replace the vodka with water. I call this "Raspberry Milk Water." If you're worried that the alcohol content is too minimal, let the mix sit behind a radiator in a plastic bag for a few weeks until it ferments.
  • Pomegranate Cosmopolitan. A great diet replacement for this cocktail can be made with new "low-cal" beers. Replace the pomegranate juice with Michelob ULTRA Pomegranate Raspberry. Replace the lime juice with Michelob ULTRA Lime Cactus. Replace the triple sec with Michelob ULTRA Tuscan Orange Grapefruit. Replace the vodka with tears. The Sex and the City girls would be proud.
  • Gin and Tonic. I call this one the "Hot Air Balloon." Mix a typical gin and tonic, but replace the tonic water with air. Then place two slices of lime with a slice of lemon in-between on the rim to mimic the pattern of a balloon.
  • Manhattan. Blindfold the dieter and drive him to Times Square. Drop the dieter off, throw a shot of whiskey in his face, and make him run home.

As you can see, accommodating the needs of a dieter can be simple. And remember: there's a good chance that the dieter is hungry and consuming drinks on an empty stomach. Just be warned.

Meg Favreau is a writer and comedian living in Philadelphia, PA. Read her blog at www.ihearyoulikestories.com.

Plymouth Gin - Midtown Mule

This is the latest cocktail creation by NYC Insieme Restaurant's bartender Marshall Altier. His most recent creation appropriately named the Midtown Mule is an ideal and refreshing way to end a hot summer day or transition to warm fall evenings. Altier plays on two very popular trends present in the cocktail world - the resurgence of gin-based cocktails as well as the use of vegetables in drinks. The all star combination makes the Midtown Mule an excellent addition to the thriving cocktail culture in New York City.

  • 1/6 cucumber (sliced into coins)
  • 2 oz. Plymouth Gin
  • 1oz. fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 oz. cardamom syrup*
  • 1/2 oz. Cointreau

Place cucumber slices and cardamon syrup in a tin and muddle to paste. Pour in remaining ingredients and shake. Pour over fresh ice in a collins glass and top with ginger beer. Garnish with a wedge of lime and 2 cucumber slices.

To produce Cardamom Syrup:

Steep 2 Tbsp. of black Cardamom pods in hot water. Combine the pods with equal parts sugar and water and steep until consistent. Cool mixture and bottle for later use.

Created by Marshall Altier at Insieme
777 7th Ave
New York, NY 10019
(212) 582-1310



Comments:

  1. Wynston

    What the right phrase ... super, great idea

  2. Ceallachan

    OOOOOOOOOOOOOOO !! I have long wanted to see this !!!!

  3. Masson

    I think this is a different sentence

  4. Anlon

    hurray, hurray ... wait



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