Thursday, 29 October 2009
October 28 in Los Angeles. It must be time for a White Christmas. Which was just one of the treats enjoyed by 35 lucky members of The Liquid Muse's Cocktail Club. Run by Natalie Bovis-Nelsen,
this should be a go-to site for anyone remotely interested in cocktails, and it operates in "real life," as a real cocktail club, too. So I was delighted when Natalie contacted me in September about a proposed event, and detailed her plans for a great evening, combining absinthe with a literary salon. An absinthe talk, discussion and tasting. Readings from Edgar Allen Poe, an author apparently much inspired by absinthe. All to be conducted at Barkeeper in Silverlake, "a head shop for those who want to prepare and serve their cocktails with style."
Unfortunately I had other plans for the evening but I was delighted that Viridian Spirits were able to sponsor the evening, and to get Joshua Freedman
to run the highly inter-active discussion of absinthe.
I was also pleased that my local friend with the camera, Kurt Smetana, joined The Cocktail Club and got himself a prized ticket to the event. All tickets went within a couple of hours of the event being announced, and I gather from Natalie that she wants to run more absinthe events in 2010. I recommend you join The Cocktail Club now to get advance notice of the next event.
Members arriving at Barkeeper were able to browse their supplies of absinthe accessories as they arrived.
But I had to be content to wake up in Europe as the event was proceeding in LA and to follow what members were saying about it on Twitter:
"And it is t-minus 10 minutes to absinthe tasting time for me."
"Absinthe tasting time!"
"time for a lil pick me up at Silver Lake .. then .. absinthe soiree at #BarKeeper, wee!"
"Best ice cube trays (sp invaders, guitars, easter statues) Bar Keeper absinthe tasting ... cocktail club"
"Absinthe cocktail called White Christmas. Leave these under my tree Santa... Yum http://yfrog.com/9gg5edj"
"At Barkeeper in Silverlake at an absinthe party."
"Le Academie de Absinthe has been incredible. http://www.TheLiquidMuse.com"
"Just went to an absinthe tasting, now for dinner and mystery microbrew!"
"I'll bring my Swiss absinthe when the #drunkenlegacy begins."
"I have now decided I love you. I had Swiss absinthe tonight too! I had Lucid, St. George & Clandestine. Yum! & for FREE!!!"
"Learned so much about absinthe at this event, not to mention getting to taste some of the REAL stuff! Thx to .. 4 a great time."
"thanks .. .. and #BarKeeper for educational absinthe event tonight!"
(Sorry to cut your head off, Josh, but the product is hero)
"@LaClandestine I love Swiss Absinthe. The Czech stuff tastes like windex and vodka. :("
"Had such a great time at BarKeeper for .. absinthe education/demo."
Note: Personal Twitter addresses removed from the above.
Kurt reports that Natalie was a great host, and that Joshua gave a great, interactive, and educational presentation. Members were able to see the difference between some real absinthes and some of their more artifical competitors. Guests were served 2 absinthe cocktails, and sampled Lucid, La Clandestine, and St. George.
Cocktails enjoyed were the White Christmas (created by Adam Schuman of the Fatty Crab, New York in 2009)
1/2 oz La Clandestine Absinthe
1/4 oz Simple syrup
1 oz Grapefruit juice
3 dashes St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram (The Bitter Truth Aromatic Bitters can be used instead)
Top up with Prosecco
and the Phoebe Snow (a recipe from 1917, recently featured in an article by Jason Wilson of the Washington Post).
1 1/2 oz Cognac
1 1/2 oz Dubonnet
1 teaspoon Lucid Absinthe
Joshua evidently got the members very involved,
as he explained Lucid's role in getting absinthe re-legalized in the USA, the differences between the styles of absinthe, and what makes real absinthe real. Judging by the response and the number of empty or near empty glasses the members were as enthused as he was.
Santé, Joshua! Thanks for the photos and the report, Kurt. And special thanks to Natalie: I hope I can make it for the next event in 2010!