Paloma

By Jonathan Laurel September 14, 2018 Cocktails

We turned to the much-mythified Paloma to feature at West Main for the weekend of Mexican Independence Day, along with our Mexican spirits flight (tequila, mescal, sotol). We, like many, believed the vague but popular myth that the Paloma was an old school Mexican cocktail that had found its way onto the menu of the occasional modern cocktail bar, and, per usual, we were curious to find out its history. It was only then that… Read More

Seminar: “The Story of Absinthe”

By Jonathan Laurel September 4, 2018 Behind the Scenes Cocktails Events

Nothing encapsulates the “authenticity, lost” quality of Golden Age bar culture quite like Absinthe. Between 1840 and its eventual ban in Europe in the early 1900s, the much-mythologized “Green Fairy” soared to the height of drinking culture. Every day Parisians (and the French and Swiss, in general) conducted a daily routine that included two solid hours for absinthe every day, between 5p and 7p—the earliest version of… Read More

I Heart Absinthe: Absinthe Frappé

By Jonathan Laurel August 17, 2018 Cocktails

The original Absinthe Frappé is the creation of one Cayetano Ferrer, a Catalan bartender immigrant to New Orleans. Ferrer presumably brought his native land’s love of absinthe—Spain never banned the spirit—to New Orleans and tended bar at the French Opera House before setting up shop at the Absinthe Room. The Absinthe Room was previously owned by a family of fellow Spaniards and left in the care of the Aleix brothers who turned the building into… Read More

I Heart Absinthe: Corpse Reviver No. 2

By Jonathan Laurel August 15, 2018 Cocktails

Though today you could easily get this drink by simply ordering a “Corpse Reviver,” this cocktail was part of a short series (of two) made by Harry Craddock at the American Bar in the Savoy. Like the Chyrsanthemum, it can be found in Craddock’s 1930, but unlike the Chrysanthemum the Corpse Revivers #1 and #2 were Craddock’s own specific variations on a 19th century style of reviver cocktails. For more information we recommend Cara… Read More

I Heart Absinthe: Chrysanthemum

By Jonathan Laurel August 13, 2018 Cocktails

This gorgeous little flower of an aperitif cocktail has a simple but obscure history. Dating back to Hugo Ensslin’s 1916 book Recipes for Mixed Drinks, the Chrysanthemum finds itself historically situated right up against both Prohibition and the wave of national bans against one of its three ingredients: absinthe. The cocktail reappears in Harry Craddock’s The Savoy Cocktail Book in 1930 and again in Boothby’s 1934 edition of The World’s Drinks and How to Mix… Read More