Author Archives: Jonathan Laurel

“Professor” Jerry Thomas: Japanese Cocktail

By Jonathan Laurel January 22, 2020 Cocktails

Filling the inconspicuous role of #113 in Jerry Thomas’s manual, the Japanese Cocktail is the second in our cocktail flight dedicate to Thomas, from Volume 5b.  A quick internet search will pretty much give you an exhaustive account of the collected knowledge about the Japanese Cocktail in one paragraph.  While we almost never recommend “a quick internet search” to learn about drinks—so often one encounters canned mistruths, copy-and-pasted across the internet with… Read More

“Professor” Jerry Thomas: Crushed Strawberry Fizz

By Jonathan Laurel January 17, 2020 Cocktails

According to Wondrich’s Imbibe!, Jerry Thomas was the first to write about the Gin Fizz in 1872.  By then it seems the cocktail was already on its way to becoming the wide-spread staple that was soon to birth a dozen iconic variations.  Among the variations important enough to grace Wondrich’s pages, the Crushed Strawberry Fizz is alleged to come from the St. Nicholas Hotel in SoHo, New York.   The St. Nicholas… Read More

Cocktail Flight: “Professor” Jerry Thomas

By Jonathan Laurel January 14, 2020 Cocktails

Recognized as the first bartender’s guide published, How To Mix Drinks or The Bon-Vivant’s Companion (1862) by “Professor” Jerry Thomas has captured bartenders’ imaginations for over one hundred and fifty years.  With a wide range of long-forgotten drinks, as well as classic cocktails, the book is a must-read for cocktail enthusiasts.  In homage to the earliest titan of cocktail culture, Volume 5b features a cocktail flight of three cocktails from this classic read. Read More

New Desserts | January, 2020

By Jonathan Laurel January 7, 2020 Food

January is here, and while that means bitter cold and short days—and for many of you Dry January, Whole Thirty, or various other cleanses—that also means new desserts from Miriam, West Main’s pastry chef.  This January West Main has four gorgeous things to help restore some joy to your life in this dark month. Heading off our menu, of course, is Mom’s Chocolate-Meringue Tart, a gourmet take on Chef Greg Spaulding’s grandmother’s classic Appalachian dessert. … Read More

New Year’s Eve, 2019: 5-Course Cocktail Pairing Menu

By Jonathan Laurel December 14, 2019 Events Food

This December 31, we are celebrating the New Year in unprecedented style with a single-seating pairing dinner unlike any other.  We are offering two menus for this evening: a Yukimuro (snow-aged) A5 Wagyu & Bourbon pairing menu, and this five-course Cocktail Pairing Menu–equally fabulous, and for different diets and wallets.  This menu is a little closer to the beating heart of our kitchen, the celebration of quality, often local ingredients and the belief… Read More