Dizzy Recap: World Cocktail Day



Dale DeGroff, King of Cocktails. Photos by Bobbi Misick.


Between birthdays and my first road race, it's taken me a hot minute to recap last week's World Cocktail Day fundraiser at Pranna, and I think my liver's still quaking. About 20 star mixologists and hundreds of thirsty followers celebrated the grand bittered sling in style. Invitees were ensured a dandy buzz as teams of five bottle-rockers served drinks each hour of the event. Some planned ahead and brought their own syrups, while others mixed drinks impromptu.


Here's a rundown of the tipples I tasted: Gary Regan's Plymouth Pull (Plymouth Gin, Gran Marnier, Navan Vanilla Cognac, Angostura bitters), Simon Ford's blueberry cocktail (Plymouth Gin, Domaine de Canton ginger liqueur, muddled blueberries, lemon juice, simple syrup, sparkling sake), Jason Kosmas' Tom Collins (Plymouth Gin, lemon juice, aloe juice, simple syrup, soda water), John Lermayer's gin cocktail (Plymouth gin, muddled cucumber, ginger juice, lemongrass syrup, lime juice), Leo DeGroff's Jezebel (muddled strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries, Sagatiba cachaca, lemongrass syrup, honey, lime juice), Erin Williams' Cointreau Cup (Cointreau, muddled mint, cucumber and strawberries, Hendrick's gin, lime juice), Charlotte Voisey's Hendrick's Smash (Hendrick's Gin, Angostura bitters, mint, agave nectar, lime juice), Aisha Sharpe's tequila cocktail (El Tesoro Reposado Tequila, muddled pink peppercorns, Navan Vanilla Cognac, grapefruit juice, lemon juice), Misty Kalkofen's Tap Treasure (El Tesoro Reposado Tequila, maple syrup, Navan Vanilla Cognac, Angostura bitters, lemon juice), Julie Reiner's Clover Club (Hendrick's Gin, homemade raspberry syrup, dry vermouth, egg white, lemon juice), Audrey Saunder's Plymouth Mojito (Plymouth Gin, muddled mint, simple syrup, Pernod), Dale DeGroff's louched Pernod Absinthe, David Wondrich's adapted Old Fashioned (made with choice of Hennessy Black or 10 Cane Rum, Angostura bitters, dash simple syrup, lemon twist), Allen Katz's whiskey cocktail (Yamazaki 12 Year Single Malt, Domaine de Canton, Gary Regan's Orange Bitters, simple syrup, lime juice, sparkling sake), Gardner Dunn's whiskey cocktail (Yamazaki 12 Year Single Malt, tamarind syrup, agave nectar, lemon juice, ginger ale), Naren Young's Pisco Punch (Pisco, pineapple gum syrup, lime juice, lemon juice), and several others, including drinks by Ben Clemons, Andy Seymour, and Jamie Gordon, although my notes got a little illegible at that point. It was a fantastic evening in honor of the artistry and talent responsible for the cocktail renaissance. Check out my Flickr page for more photos by Bobbi Misick.




Audrey Saunders of Pegu Club.

John LeMayer of The Florida Room.

Jason Kosmas of Employees Only.

Aisha Sharpe of Contemporary Cocktails.

Colin Asare-Appiah, Brand Ambassador, U'Luvka Vodka.

Charlotte Voisey, Brand Ambassador, Hendrick's Gin.

Gardner Dunn, Brand Ambassador, Yamazaki Whiskey.

A pomegranate and bourbon cocktail.


Hello World, and Happy Cocktail Day!



It's World Cocktail Day! What better day to get this blog on NYC cocktails and culture up and running? Today is the 203rd Anniversary of the Great American Cocktail. On this day in 1806, the cocktail was defined in a Hudson, N.Y., newspaper as a "stimulating liquor, composed of spirits of any kind, sugar, water and bitters it is vulgarly called a bittered sling, and is supposed to be an excellent electioneering potion inasmuch as it renders the heart stout and bold, at the same time that it fuddles the head. It is said also, to be of great use to a democratic candidate: because, a person having swallowed a glass of it, is ready to swallow anything else." Fuddle away!


Tonight I will be attending the World Cocktail Day Fundraiser at Pranna, and I'll get you all of the dizzying post-event details. Nineteen of the top mixologists (in the country, let alone NYC) will be slinging all sorts of libations to help raise money for the Museum of the American Cocktail in New Orleans. I'm expecting to see Dale DeGroff, David Wondrich, Gary Regan, Audrey Saunders, Julie Reiner, Allen Katz, Charlotte Voisey, and Aisha Sharpe, among others (including my very own roommate, Gardner Dunn!) This event wraps up World Cocktail Week, although for many in the cocktail world, that doesn't mean much--this is one of the busiest months as bars and brands get ready for a spirited summer.


This is just the beginning for The Dizzy Fizz (call it the beta stage, if you will). Be sure to check back often as I add more features, bells, and whistles. For now, click on my page listing the best NYC Cocktail Bars and let me know if there are any bars missing that you think deserve to be there. Although there are plenty of establishments in this city serving tantalizing drinks, I wanted to recommend those with serious cocktail programs. At the bottom of the page you'll see my email address; feel free to say hello.

File Under: Recipe Smackdown

  The bar is a rotating carousel, people. Does it get any better?

Everyone who's anyone in the world of cocktails will be in New Orleans for Tales of the Cocktail July 8th-12th (um, except me, unless a recession fairy sprinkles some gold under my pillow). But wait! Coming to the rescue of one lucky mixologist (or amateur!) is the Hotel Monteleone, a historic hotel in the French Quarter. To mark the 60th anniversary of the hotel's Carousel Bar, the hotel is holding a cocktail contest, and the deadline is fast approaching. The story is, from the time the bar opened in 1949 until the '60s or '70s, there was a drink on the menu called the Monteleone. Sadly, no one can remember or find the recipe, so herein lies your chance to come up with a concoction worthy to be the namesake. The recipes will be judged by VIPs who will be at the Carousel's anniversary celebration on May 21. There are no requirements on types of liquor or style of drink, just make sure you email the recipe (along with your name, address, and phone number) to athornton@hotelmonteleone.com by May 18. The winning entry will become the new official Monteleone Cocktail, and the winner will receive four free nights at the Hotel Monteleone during Tales of the Cocktail 2009. I'll have to see if I can come up with something exceptional. Best of luck to all!