Cocktail Spotlight: Pink Lemonade & Black Devil

We all know that the month of October brings the Halloween season and the preoccupation with costumes, trick or treat and everything black and orange, but it is also Breast Cancer Awareness Month so we must 'think pink' as well. For this month's featured cocktails, I will be offering up a classic ghoulish theme concoction to celebrate Halloween as well as 'pink' cocktails to recognize those survivors and victims of this horrendous disease. For you guys out there, don't be afraid to 'drink pink'. Join the movement and shake up a pink cocktail.

Hey Bartender!

For this week's posts, I will be changing gears a bit by discussing psychological aspects of the bar as it relates to alcohol service, customer service, and a glimpse behind the scenes of the booming alcohol industry. It is certainly beneficial to be psychologically trained coupled with an extensive knowledge of the bar business, but not necessarily required to understand the basic principles contained in this discussion.

Cocktail Spotlight: Sparkling Ginger

Although the unseasonably warm weather still makes it feel like summer and the desire to drink a cocktail that fits the weather, it is October and the beginning of the Fall, so it is appropriate to feature a Fall-like cocktail for this post. I present to you the "Sparkling Ginger" cocktail, which requires multiple steps to complete, but is so worth it with just the right amount of spice and refreshment for a warm day or evening or a nice, cool, breezy Fall night. It serves as a great before-dinner cocktail with your date. 

Vegetable Infusions

Vegetable Infusions

Some examples:  Ginger, chili pepper, serrano pepper, jalapeno pepper, rhubarb, cucumber, carrot, capsicum, and beet

Ginger Infused Vodka

Ginger is a common ingredient in Asian cuisine and cocktails.  It is quite spicy so try not to use too much or it will be overpowering.

Fruit Infusions

Fruit Infusions

Keep in mind that certain fruits are seasonal so they may not be available locally and at certain times of the year. Remember to choose the freshest fruits.

Here is a list of the more common fruits used for infusions and the growing seasons along with the spirits you should use with specific fruits.

Asian Pears = YR (year round), peel/slice small, Gin or Vodka                                               

Blueberries = YR (best Jun-Aug), bruise/infuse, Brandy, Rum, or Tequila

Homemade Infusions

This week I'm going to take a little break from elaborating on drinking personalities and cocktail making and focus on making homemade infusions that anyone can enjoy and make at home with the right equipment, tools, and supplies. This will be the first in a series on infusions and the different types you can make. I will start with the most common and simplest of infusions - fruit infusions next time, but will first discuss what they really are and some common pitfalls and mistakes associated with preparing them.