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  1. Is there a certain point when we should step back from this, pull the cocktail off its pedestal a bit and remind ourselves that this is food and drink we're talking about? Food and drink should be fun, and the point should be to enjoy it. Sharing recipes and technique is a way to try to advance that enjoyment. As a bartender I am proud of what I do, the drinks I make, and how my quests react when they taste what I put in front of them. If someone wants to replicate a drink at home or in their bar; more power to them. I hope they're able to make it better and maybe even show me a thing or two. And if what I'm making is not something that I've personally come up with, then I'm damn sure going to give credit to those that deserve it. In a culinary community I think that there has to be a certain pride in giving that credit to those who deserve it, but also pride in sharing ideas so that the community as a whole can continue to advance. The point to constant tinkering of recipes is the realization that as with any art we're constantly in search of perfection, however unattainable it is; and perhaps by sharing recipes and techniques we can move a bit closer to that goal. If people are going to claim another person's recipe as their own to advance themselves in this day and internet-crazed age then I think it's simply a matter of time until that person is called out as a hack. If they don't have the courtesy and professionalism to give credit where it's due then that is a shame, and at that point I wouldn't really consider them as an active part of the community any more. Yet I don't think that people such as that are going to have any lasting impact- they're not actually creating anything new. The creative people are always going to keep creating, and that's why I think they'll continue to make a lasting name for themselves; not simply one that results in an ambassadorship. Not all ambassadors stick around very long, probably for that reason.
  2. At Tales this year I saw a number of people carrying around real-looking leles, wooden swizzle sticks from the swizzlestick tree. Unfortunately I was too busy enjoying other things to take the time to ask about them. Does anyone here know of a place to purchase them other than flying to Martinique?
  3. I like anything for menu cocktails within arm's reach. After that the bottles that guests are going to ask for more frequently are placed where most accessible for busy service, but I like to try to find space to display bottles that many people may have not yet tried to encourage conversation and education. Placing Anchor Junipero in front of Bombay Sapphire, or Bernheim wheat whiskey alongside Makers Mark; even something as simple as Green Chartreuse being in the front and center of the bar encourages people to pause and consider trying something new.
  4. Katie- What about trying shochu with a little sriracha, lemon, and pickling liquid? Drop an oyster in there and I'd go nuts.
  5. I love akvavit and lingonberry together. I've been doing a drink lately using both that guests really seem to enjoy: Skål! Cocktail 1 1/2 oz Aalborg akvavit 3/4 oz Hidalgo Pedro Jimenez sherry 1/2 oz lemon juice 1/2 oz Vya dry vermouth 1 barspoon lingonberry preserves Got the preserves from Ikea, they bring great bright fruit flavors to the drink that then changes into a nuttier flavor from the sherry and dry vermouth, finishing with rye/caraway flavors that linger.
  6. I'll second the use of atomizers for rinsing. I've got a couple of the Misto vermouth atomizers- I keep one for absinthe, one for Angostura. They really are more efficient in their aromatic effect instead of a simple rinse. More liquid clings to the glass and there's much less waste. For Valentine's weekend I was serving a cocktail in a champagne flute with a rosewater rinse. Friday night I was did a traditional rinse; saturday I emptied and cleaned my bitters atomizer and refilled with rosewater. I saved greatly on the amount of rosewater necessary and gained much in the effect. I stuck with that for the rest of the weekend.
  7. I've had a lot of people enjoy this one lately. Maple Loch 2 oz Ardbeg 10 yr 3/4 oz Nux Alpina 1/2 oz Blis bourbon aged maple syrup 1/2 oz lemon juice 2 dashes hop bitters Shaken hard, served with an amarena cherry.
  8. Figure out bottle placement for the majority of the drink's you'll be making so that they are close at hand, and then work on developing your body's muscle memory so that you can find these without looking.
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