Ever dreamed of running a secret bar out of your home? This guy does—and his isn’t the only one around, either. My night at a real-life Brooklyn speakeasy.
PUNCH, January 12, 2017
Creative non-alcoholic cocktails to make at home.
Wine Enthusiast, January 2017
My favorite party trick: tell me what’s in your glass, and I’ll tell you about yourself.
Wine Enthusiast, January 2017
The ocean is nowhere in sight, but that hasn’t stopped Steel City from developing one of the deepest–and quirkiest–tiki scenes in the country.
PUNCH, November 21, 2016
After 50 years of travel restrictions, Cuba is finally opening to Americans again. I traveled there to scope out the drinking and eating scene.
Wine Enthusiast, November 2016
If you’ve shelved the spirit till warmer weather—or are sticking with your usual Tanqueray & tonic—you’re missing out.
Bloomberg Pursuits, January 14, 2016
A new breed of inn is offering guests meals and a room for the night along with their wee dram.
The Wall Street Journal, January 12, 2016
Up the airport drink ante with craft cocktails on Concourse E.
Wine Enthusiast, January 2016
Essay: My visit to Haiti turned into a full-on hunt for a legendary rum punch recipe.
Wine Enthusiast, December 2015
Eco-responsibility has arrived at the speakeasy.
Bloomberg Pursuits, November 25, 2015
A groundswell of bartenders are making drinks without ice. I road-tested the trend.
Eater, November 18, 2015
Elaborate tasting menus aren’t just for food — here’s the backstory behind how the cocktail omakase caught on in the U.S.
Eater, November 5, 2015
Liquor made with chile peppers, cinnamon and other spices –and the cocktails made with these spicy spirits –have come a long way.
The Wall Street Journal, October 27, 2015
Never before have there been so many sip-worthy vermouths — or fabulous cocktails showcasing vermouth.
Wine Enthusiast Magazine, October 2015
How the hard stuff became the hottest drink in the Northeast.
Arrive Magazine, September/October 2015
Why Sam Ross’s Paper Plane is my new favorite cocktail.
Liquor.com, September 20, 2015
Texture matters in vodka, more than you may realize.
PUNCH, September 2, 2015
So stock up on these new-to-the-U.S. cult brands while you still can.
Bloomberg Pursuits, August 24, 2015
This Scottsdale, AZ set up a quirky pop-up where Cuba meets Cubism.
Saveur, August 10, 2015
Show your chops by mixing timeless cocktails incorporating three styles of this summer-ready spirit.
Wine Enthusiast, June 2015
On Sundays in Birmingham, a craft cocktail pop-up is a savior from the city’s blue laws.
Saveur, June 2015
Everything you need to know about the most classic of cocktails. Includes five original drink recipes.
Saveur, May 18, 2015
Pondering the history –and future– of blue drinks.
Eater, April 16, 2015
Until recently, American distillers had largely forgotten the art of malting their own local and heritage grains. I wrote about the rebirth of proprietary malting floors and how it’s changing the character of American craft whiskey.
PUNCH, February 18, 2015
Can Americans be won over by baijiu, China’s firewater-like liquor?
Bloomberg Pursuits, February 17, 2015
In which I coin the phrase “cannabitters.”
Bloomberg Pursuits, February 11, 2015
And you thought a $20 drink was ridiculous? Bartenders are charging hundreds and even thousands of dollars per drink. It’s as indefensible as it sounds.
Slate, December 18, 2014
Thanks to a new law, New York’s craft distilleries can serve mixed drinks – which opens a slew of new business opportunities.
The Wall Street Journal, December 15, 2014
My adventures chasing down Havana Club — during the final weeks before the easing of U.S.-Cuba embargo restrictions.
Bloomberg Pursuits, December 11, 2014
Woody Creek, Colorado, is an enclave of leftist hippies and the home of late Gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson. Now it has its own distillery making “farm-to-flask” vodka, which, it turns out, is about the closest thing you’ll get to having a drink with HST.
PUNCH, November 17, 2014
I thought acing a cocktail competition would be easy. I was wrong. Here’s what happened.
Wine Enthusiast, December 2014
From riffs on the classic sidebar to fancy punches, brandy cocktails are the ultimate fireside sipper.
Arrive Magazine, Nov/Dec 2014
This slightly racy article yielded one of my favorite compliments of all time: “I have never been so hungry, thirsty and turned on all at the same time.”
Bloomberg Pursuits, October 24, 2014
From Colonial-era flips to whimsical tiki fantasies, the molasses-based spirit has been an important part of drinking life over the last two-plus centuries.
Liquor.com, October 20, 2014
Whether aged on board a ship, below sea level or simply near the water, I investigated three distiller claims that access to the ocean makes for better booze.
Wine Enthusiast, October 2014
A look at the growing “boozy bakery” trend – pies, cakes and more with an alcoholic kick! There’s a video, too.
The Wall Street Journal, September 22, 2014
These are the bars that changed the way people drink in the 21st century.
Liquor.com, September 19, 2014
Forget those toxic-green apple-tinis; a new wave of American ciders has arrived, and bartenders are using them in fresh new cocktail combinations.
The Wall Street Journal, September 12, 2014
This feature on cocktails made in perfectly equal proportions was one of the most-read articles on Wine Enthusiast’s website for months after it was published!
Wine Enthusiast, September 2014
After years of dandyish and devastatingly strong cocktails, this long, cool drink is back in a big way. How refreshing!
The Wall Street Journal, August 8, 2014
Until about a year ago, a devoted subsection of New York bars focused on the rum-soaked tiki culture, before the cruel vagaries of Manhattan’s real estate market crushed them like fresh fruit beneath its massive muddler. But New York Tiki refuses to die.
Thrillist, August 6, 2014
Traditionally, straight vodka has always been barrel-free. Now brands are releasing wood-aged batches, and it’s stirring up controversy over whether it’s actually legal to call this new breed “vodka.” But the mixologists experimenting with barrel-aged vodkas don’t care.
Wine Enthusiast, July 2014
Now more than ever, there’s a gin—and a gin cocktail—for every taste, not only in summer, but year-round. Here are four cocktails, each showcasing a different style of gin.
Wine Enthusiast, July 2014
A growing number of spirits producers—making everything from vodka to liqueurs to American whiskey—have begun to explore how variables like variety and vintage impact the character of spirits. I wrote about how values once reserved for wine are being assimilated into the world of booze production.
PUNCH, June 11, 2014
A century ago, World War I broke out, and with it came a cocktail: the French 75. A look at the drink’s storied past, and how bartenders are refreshing the drink for today. (That cocktail at left is the Pomme Rosé, created by San Francisco’s Slanted Door.)
Saveur Drink, June 2014
No one does chili – or chili cook-offs – quite like Texas. In addition to stellar chili recipes, Texas-based somms offer wine, beer and spirits pairings suggestions – all from Texas producers, of course!
Wine Enthusiast, June 2014
Plum brandy or paint thinner? My ode to the spirit we love to hate.
Tablet Magazine, April 9, 2014
Ciao! Seven best-in-class Italian spirits worth seeking out – plus cocktail ideas to put each bottle to work.
Wine Enthusiast, April 2014
The story behind TV show How I Met Your Mother‘s stupid fake Scotch brand – and why it drives me crazy.
Slate, March 16, 2014
Neutral no more, vodka is finally expressing itself. A few industry innovators are pushing the boundaries, with surprising (and flavorful) results.
The Wall Street Journal, March 6, 2014
Cocktails that prove Irish whiskey isn’t just for St. Patrick’s Day anymore.
Arrive Magazine, March/April 2014
Are 1970s-style cocktails replacing tiki drinks as the guilty pleasure du jour?
The Wall Street Journal, February 20, 2014
I wrote the cover story for Edible Manhattan’s annual alcohol issue: a profile of Coppersea Distilling, a unique “heritage distiller” using 1880s techniques.
Edible Manhattan, January 2014
I drank and evaluated 13 pop-culture wine bottlings, including Downton Abbey, Star Trek, Duck Dynasty and 50 Shades of Grey wine – and lived to tell the tale.
Slate, December 29, 2013
An opinion piece about gender-specific spirits.
Slate, December 23, 2013
My essay (with tasting notes) on the ascent of Japanese whiskey and other great whiskies from Asia — all poised to give Scotch a run for its money.
Wine Enthusiast, December 2013
Talking (and tasting) with three top toques who have rolled out bespoke spirits created with food-friendliness in mind.
Wine Enthusiast, November 1, 2013
Feature story on rye whiskey, and the cocktails that celebrate its speakeasy past.
Wine Enthusiast, October 2013
These fearless females create some of the world’s favorite spirits.
Wine Enthusiast, August 2013
Distillers are going to ever greater lengths-the South Pole, outer space-to produce bourbons and Scotches worth writing home about.
The Wall Street Journal, July 19, 2013
Has the trend in super high-proof spirits gotten out of hand?
Slate, July 1, 2013
The next gen of frozen cocktails moves well beyond the margarita machine. It’s time to treat yourself to this delicious deep-freeze trend.
Wine Enthusiast, July 2013
Check out these deliciously complex cocktails that will titillate the most discerning palates.
Arrive Magazine, June 2013
Long Island’s North Fork wineries are producing an esteemed collection of unique bottlings perfect for summer.
Hamptons Magazine, June 2013
Celery adds an earthy zest to springtime cocktails.
Imbibe Magazine, March/April 2013
A grown-up’s guide to celebrating Cinco de Mayo, with drink recipes (no frozen Margaritas!) and suggested premium tequila bottlings.
Wine Enthusiast, May 2013
The first time I tasted a superaged spirit—a rare 50-year-old Glenfiddich single malt scotch—I was taken aback. Not by the whiskey itself, but by the rapturous swooning of the whiskey geeks all around me. In the world of wine and spirits, we’ve been told that older is always better. But sometimes it’s just not true.
Slate, March 18, 2013
Can the right glass improve — or ruin — your cocktail? Glassware designers are working overtime to develop new and improved vessels beyond the classic snifters, flutes, highballs, and lowballs for showcasing spirits.
Sommelier Journal, February 2013
Whether served neat or in innovative cocktails, this classic spirit is worth discovering, or revisiting. Feature story, with cocktail recipes and bottle recommendations.
Wine Enthusiast, December 2012
Profile of Tirado, the first distiller in the Bronx since Prohibition, which is making “fruit-aged” rums and other products with Puerto Rican heritage.
The New York Times, November 23, 2012
Rock and Rye, an early barroom staple, made its way into the medicine cabinet during the temperance movement.
Saveur Magazine, November 2012
Not content with artisanal spirits and house-made bitters, bartenders are pursuing the perfect cocktail counterpoint by making their own vermouths.
Food Arts, November 2012
Whether you sip them straight up or use them to upgrade cocktails, these new vermouths are simply stellar.
Wine Enthusiast, September 2012
Cover story! Although cask aging has always been a key factor in the production of certain spirits, the barrel itself has become as important as any ingredient. Cooperage is now a topic on which bartenders need to be well versed. Are you ready to talk wood?
Sommelier Journal, September 2012
Did someone say “Foie Gras Martini?” Although he’s not a bartender, San Francisco chef Russell Jackson has developed some thought-provoking cocktails.
Wine Enthusiast, August 2012
Artisan sodas make a splash at New York bars and restaurants.
Edible Manhattan, July/August 2012
Forget about big, boozy cocktails. Increasingly, aperitifs –libations with a lower alcohol content and lighter touch– are what’s in the glass
Wine Enthusiast, July 2012
An essential journalistic skill no one tells you about: bartending.
The New York Times, May 10, 2012
Feeling a little rough around the edges? It’s OK, honey. Put on your sunglasses like the rock star you thought you were last night, and order a Brandy Milk Punch.
Edible Brooklyn, March, 2012
Want to start a lively debate? Ask a cocktail aficionado to select the iconic cocktail of New Orleans: The Sazerac or the Ramos Gin Fizz. (The answer is at the end of the piece.)
Reuters, March 26, 2012
Is sous-vide technology the new cocktail “killer app”? These bartenders think so.
Food Arts, March 2012
One in a weekly series on where business travellers should go to find a great drink in various cities. According to the bartender featured in this article, when this story broke, it “went viral” all across the Midwest.
Reuters, December 13, 2011
We challenged Brooklyn bartender Damon Boelte: with access to just three spirits bottles, suggest six great drinks. Boelte gave us 20. (For months, this was the most-read spirits story on the Wine Enthusiast site!)
Wine Enthusiast, September 2011
From classic cocktails to tiki riffs, this historic spirit is back on the modern mixologist’s menu.
Wine Enthusiast, June 2011
From tiki drinks to a party playlist, here’s how to get in touch with your innter Trader Vic — but with an updated take.
Fresh Home, Summer 2011
Distillers are turning to cask-finishing for a richer, more complex product.
Wine Enthusiast, April 2011
A growing number of bartenders are encouraging patrons to go off-menu, in what some refer to as “bespoke drinks” or “cocktail omakase.” Leave it to me, they murmur seductively. Trust me. I’ll create the perfect drink for you.
Food Arts, February 2011
Two takes on one story:
To Steep, Perchance to Dream (Edible Brooklyn, Nov/Dec 2011)
From Bitters Builders, A Bar (Edible Manhattan, Jan/Feb 2012)
With cherry season in full swing, I’m gearing up to hit the market and make very grown-up maraschino cherries.
NPR Kitchen Window, June 2, 2010
This irreverent indie magazine asked me to write about meat-based cocktails after I organized a seminar at Tales of the Cocktail on the topic. From the “Blood, Sex, Sugar, Magic” issue.
Drink Me Magazine, February 2010
Bartenders are mixing up fresh cocktails with a classic holiday ingredient: figs! Look for the magazine on newsstands, it’s worth it for the “When Figs Fly” cocktail alone.
Imbibe Magazine, November/December 2009
This article combines two of my other passions: coffee and culinary history. Among the countless ways to brew a cup of coffee, James Freeman of Blue Bottle Coffee thinks the old-fashioned drip method is the best. He and other coffee-philes have a Dresden housewife named Melitta Benz to thank for that.
Saveur Magazine, November 2009