I love spring in New York because the sunshine compels me to get out of the house – when it’s gray out, it’s easy to just fall into your couch watching Downton Abbey…which I managed to find time to do this weekend, too. I finally finished the second season and the holiday special, but I’m so sad that I have to wait until the fall for season three! The end of season two was absolutely perfect and well worth the wait, though – I’m sure that many of you feel the same. All that aside, Kramer and I didn’t just have television marathons all weekend (contrary to popular belief). On Friday night, we went to a friend’s stand-up show followed by improv, Crif Dogs, and drinks. We were able to sleep in a bit on Saturday morning before heading out to Smorgasburg with a friend, where we kind of went a little crazy because we’d missed it so much all winter. We had banh mi style and pork belly hotdogs from Asia Dog, brisket from Brooklyn Cured, lychee bubble tea from Thirstea, and one of the best falafel sandwiches I have ever had from Saucy by Nature; it was honestly my favorite thing that we had that day. On our way out, we couldn’t resist picking up a hazelnut s’more from S’More Bakery for later. We wanted to see if The Brooklyn Kitchen had any interested mushrooms to go with the dinner we were making later, so we decided to take a walk down there from the Williamsburg waterfront, then stopped at The Richardson for a mid-afternoon cocktail before heading home. That night, we were able to go out to see Cabin in the Woods, which I absolutely loved. It was not at all what I expected, so even if you don’t like horror movies, you should go and see it because it might just change your mind – it ended up being one of the funniest movies so far this year, plus Bradley Whitford and Richard Jenkins were phenomenal in it.
One of the things we did on Sunday afternoon was have an early dinner of roasted chicken and vegetables, after which we watched Jackie Brown and enjoyed this cocktail. I got the recipe for it from a cook book that I was recently sent to try out: The Food You Want to Eat by Ted Allen. I have long been a fan of Allen’s, so I was excited to be able to check out his book. It was actually published in 2005, but the recipes are classics. Ted continues to share his expertise with us in this Robert Mondavi Private Selection YouTube series, where he takes the pressure out of pairing food and drink together – it’s easier than it looks, trust me! This drink consists of bourbon, maraschino liqueur, and most importantly, Peychaud’s bitters, which I had never purchased before but am glad that I did. The bitters is slightly sweeter than the usual Angostura variety, and it is a beautiful red color, which, as Ted explains, really livens up the drink. There are more cocktail recipes in the book, as well as entertaining ideas and suggestions for menus for almost any occasion on the Robert Mondavi Private Selection page through the Tuesdays with Ted series. With that, I am pleased to be able to give away a copy of this book to one of you. Simply leave a comment telling me about your favorite springtime drink, be it a refreshing homemade soda or a strong martini! The giveaway will be open until the end of the week, and I look forward to trying out the suggestions that I hear from you this spring.
- 2 ounces bourbon
- 1 ounce maraschino liqueur
- 4 or 5 dashes of Peychaud’s bitters
- orange twist, for garnish
- cherry, for garnish
- Use a peeler to peel a thin strip of orange peel and twist it around your finger, then hold it there for a moment so that it stays twisted. Place an ice cube in your double old fashioned glass.
- Shake the bourbon, maraschino liqueur, and bitters with a few cubes of ice with a cocktail shaker, then pour over ice and garnish with your orange twist and/or a cherry.