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A Spontaneous Libation for your Consideration

Fears and Failures

1⁄2 oz Lemon juice
1⁄4 oz Honey syrup (1:1)

Shake and strain into a rocks glass with fresh ice. Top with ~2 1/2 oz Notch Saison beer. Stir.


Light on alcohol, this cocktail is pretty refreshing. I've topped it with other ales and holds up well---try a kolsch!

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3.5 stars
(3 ratings)

From the Knowledge Vault

All The Gin Joints by Michael Turback

New Spins on Gin from America’s Best Bars

I enjoyed reading an advance copy of Michael Turback’s All The Gin Joints: New Spins on Gin from America’s Best Bars (ISBN 978-1466282988), a book celebrating gin with “101 artisanal cocktails.” Mr. Turback writes in a light, engaging style, weaving quotes from Casablanca through the prologue and the brief history of gin that front the cocktail recipes. A small fairly complete section covers proper bartending tools, material which should be familiar to people who love cocktails.

The cocktails themselves range from the staggeringly simple “Wolf’s Bite”, (3 parts gin, 2 parts grapefruit juice, and 1 part Green Chartreuse) to the almost comically complex “Daikon Dream”, which has intrepid home mixologists stirring up dongchimi broth, taking two full days to ferment at room temperature.

That’s not to say that there aren’t some intriguing drinks in this book. I am honored to know all of the Texas bartenders in the book, and Bobby Heugel’s “Smitten” is not only delicious, but within the abilities of the home cocktail-maker. Likewise, Jeffrey Morgenthaler’s “East of Eden” takes an gin sour with equal parts citrus and syrup, but enhances the white flower aromatics of St. Germain with a floral-lychee scented Gewurztraminer reduction. There are some cocktails in “All The Gin Joints” that combine deliciousness and ease of construction into a pleasant whole.

Recent Additions

  • Vaseline — Gin, Amaro, Suze, Dry vermouth, Orange peel
  • Devil Makes Work — Light rum, Rhum Agricole, Falernum, Fernet Branca, Curaçao, Bitters, Orange peel
  • Cleopatra (1937 UKBG) — Gin, Centerbe, Cranberry juice
  • Career Choices — Almond liqueur, Fernet, Blue Curaçao, Falernum, Peychaud's Bitters, Lemon juice
  • Chorrizo's Leaky Roof — Whiskey, Sweet vermouth, Triple sec, Peychaud's Bitters, Aperitivo

Recent Discussion

  • Re And to All a Goodnight, 3 days ago Biff Malibu commented:

    Maybe start subbing in mezcal.

  • Re Vaseline, 4 days ago Craig E commented:

    The name "Vaseline" conjures much less appetizing associations in my part of the world!

  • Re Small But Mighty, 4 days ago mlphilli commented:

    This is an amazing cocktail. I'd been trying many different recipes with mezcal & passion fruit, but the crème de cacao balances it in a way that no other variation I've tried manages. I did not have Scrappy's firewater, so I substituted Bitter End mole bitters, which are quite spicy. I toasted to the memory of my pittie mix Loki and to Jack ❤️

  • Re Brainstorm, 5 days ago Joe White commented:

    Made this last night to spec, but it wasn't quite balanced. I used Cocchi Vermouth di Torino Extra Dry Piedmont. 1/2 oz wasnt enough. It took another 1/2 oz to make it really good. Plus Powers Irish Whiskey & Benedictine. I think I will add an drop of Crude "RIZZO" BITTERS (ROSEMARY, GRAPEFRUIT & PEPPERCORN) next time.

  • Re Star Daisy, 5 days ago yarm commented:

    This pre-dates Sasha. It's based off of a century old classic that they made famous by taking it out of obscurity and putting on a menu at the John Dory Oyster Bar. Couldn't find which book had the curaçao version but I did find a few that had the grenadine Star Daisy. The NY Times article (behind a paywall) about it describes the lineage a little better (but I can't get to it now).