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  1. eipi10


    imust admit up front to being really drunk...so drunk that I decided to just pour some stuff into a shaker quasi-randomly and shake it. ("parts" are approximate.) But I have made this drink twice and I really like it...! 1 part Cynar 1 part absinthe 3-4 parts rye whiskey (rittenhouse 50%) a couple of dashes of orange bitters shaken with ice good stuff. i mean, honestly, objectively, it tastes perfect to me....like a classic drink. interestingly, the strongest lingering aftertaste is the sweet Cynar. i think the takeaway is that Cynar can help make some profound and delicious cocktails.
  2. new to cocktails. have been experimenting with manhattans. hit a home run with... 2 oz black maple hill bourbon 0.5 oz dry noilly prat 0.5 oz red noilly prat angostura bitters (a couple of serious shakes) the thing i'm most sure of is that i much prefer the black maple hill bourbon in the manhattan to rittenhouse rye. i also think this 2:1 ratio of bourbon to vermouth is about on. moreover, the sweetness is right for me: the sugar hits first and comforts the palate for a split second before the bitter complexity and alcohol burn take full command. made with peychauds, this is also a very good, though remarkably, different drink. it replaces the dark, masculine pepper of angostura with brighter, more lively ideas. i prefer the angostura bitters in this drink...but really different personalities.
  3. Great post--very enlightening.
  4. I wouldn't be as cynical as others. If you look at a non-foodie review site like Yelp, sure, many people don't really care that much about the food, but most clearly do. It isn't surprising that when you change menus you lose customers initially. Your return customers prior to the menu change evidently liked the old menu. Some proportion of them will not like the new menu, and you lose their business. It takes longer for word to circulate about the merits of the new menu. Thus, initially you lose business.
  5. Some gorgeous pictures here. I think were I to eat these, they would be my favorites! My favorite mithai are various halwas (especially carrot) and milk cakes (especially Kalakhand). Generally if it's white, or if it's called halwa, I love it. I tend to like every Indian milk dessert (Shrikhand, rasmulai, sondesh, etc.), even if they are not mithai strictly speaking. Laddoos are hit and miss (they come in such a wide variety), and I'm not a big fan of burfi. Burfi tend to be too grainy for me--it seems too much like a mashed up sugar bomb. (Similarly, I find besan desserts too grainy and earthy for my tastes). Jalebi and similar treats are OK once in a while. Gulab Jamun is delicious but ubiquitous.
  6. I'm no Indian food expert, but classic combinations I have seen are as follows: Bhatura with channa/chole (chickpeas). One of my favorite Indian dishes. It's perfect. Pooris with shrikhand (Gujarati). Ridiculously decadent, but good. Also keep in mind that Indians (at least in Singapore and Malaysia--the places I've traveled) use parathas and rotis to scoop up their curries like Ethiopians use injera and Arabs use pita to scoop up their dishes. I don't think there's just one dish or set of dishes that is meant to accompany parathas and rotis.
  7. This article reminded me of the emotional debate in the wine community over "terroir." European food culture can be very provincial. I remember dining at an "Indian restaurant" in Lucca, Tuscany. It was fascinating how far removed the cuisine was from actual Indian food. I doubt I could have identified what cuisine I was ostensibly eating were it served in a neutral context. I have no hesitation saying that the food cultures in European countries generally are far more homogeneous than that in America. The main inquiry of the article seemed to be whether an a native Moroccan really understand Italian cuisine? Maybe not. I think we will always have a bias for the flavors we grew up with. The more interesting question raised by the article, in my opinion, is whether it is desirable for a refined cuisine to evolve through foreign influences. On one hand, if the cooking of the foreign chefs wins customers, then presumably that is because the results are satisfying, and the cuisine is evolving for the better. On the other, cuisine evolution, like so many elements of culture today, trends toward homogeneity. Overall, I think a conservative movement in food culture may be a good thing, but with a free market system, it is hopeless.
  8. My favorite cheese is Epoisses, which I find incredibly delicious. I'd go so far as to say it is the "king of cheeses," as Brillat Savarin proclaimed. But I've come to realize, generally, that as amazingly complex and diverse is cheese is, it's not one of my favorite foods. For example, I never really enjoy the beautiful French chevres, though I respect them greatly. What I really enjoy most are simple unaged Italian cheeses: buffalo mozzarella, ricotta, and burrata.
  9. The fun thing about being a "foodie" is that no matter how savvy you think you are, there's always a vast amount of food you've never tried. Or in this case, heard of. I wonder if there are lots of interesting foods like "potato cheese" to be found only in historical records.
  10. I am a cognac novice, but I have splurged on a bunch of armagnacs and cognacs recently--to learn and to enjoy. I've decided I prefer the smoother taste of cognac to the rougher but potentially more complex taste of armagnac. (Cognac goes through an additional distillation step, which results in a significant difference in the two brandies). Right now I'm drinking Courvoisier XO. In my office I have Courvoisier Napoleon. I have been very impressed with these. They cost roughly $90 and $75. I consider them much better to my tastes than VS/VSOP of any brand. I do not like Courvoisier or Hennessey VSOP--it is too harsh. (In this price range I have had better luck with Pierre Ferrand). At a price around $100/750 ml, Courvoisier XO is a wonderful beverage and a great value in my opinion. I can't compare it to the full range of XOs because I haven't tasted any other XO. But I can say that Courvoisier XO is clearly very good, and seems to be a good value compared to other beverages in the $100 price range. It has a smooth, aged taste. There is plenty of sweet desserty complexity, but there are no harsh notes at all. (I think if you are accustomed to having liquor in your mouth, this is liquid dessert.) Maybe this is just a style I enjoy, but I doubt you'd buy it and think you didn't get your money's worth. I can imagine cognacs being substantially more complex, but I can't imagine them being significantly smoother or instinctively enjoyable. I would think that past this age (20-35 year old cognac elements) and price range, you're paying for prestige and novelty. Perhaps I'm wrong.
  11. I can't remember any good food at any airport in the world. It's amazing.
  12. The only trouble is that it interferes in some social situations. E.g., people want to go to lunch at the worst places, and I have to choose between mediocre filler and dining alone. I choose the latter! Why waste a meal?
  13. I have had $15 Manhattans without bitters before. What can you do? Most people drink alcoholic beverages merely for social purposes. Owners don't care and I don't blame them.
  14. I was reading this thread and thinking to myself, bagels. Leave the friggin' blueberries OUT, please. And while your at it, get those pineapple slices off my pizza! ← I think blueberry, banana nut, and chocolate chip bagels are delicious. But my pet peeve is places that don't boil the bagels or use malt.
  15. oy--my grandmother once told me "ooh, parsley makes a wonderful pesto!" this is the same woman who once took the leftover used coffee grounds out of the coffee pot and dumped them over a pot roast she was making. (apologies to those who like parsley pesto or coffee ground pot roast.) ← we posted our posts at exactly the same time!
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