Archive for the ‘Philly’ Category

Backlash to Elderflower

March 14, 2009

Oh, Philly – I’ll give you an A for effort, but i have to say, a little disappointed on the cocktails consumed last night. I’ve been wanting to try this place Apothecary Bar + lounge (above) eversince reading about it in Food & Wine. The have a cool concept: bottle service cocktails. If you don’t want to shell out $50+ for a full carafe, you can order just one of their signature Elixirs or a Classic, which is an old-school sip with an Apothecary twist. Most of the cocktails at Apothecary are made with quality spirits, bitters, fresh juices, and herbs. It was a little hard to choose one from the menu (and, unfortunately, the bartender wasn’t much help). I picked the Immunity Idol (it is AI season, after all). The menu describes this sip as “an analeptic of high style for all systems needed” – whatever that means. The problem: too much St. Germain. I should have known, but I was so impressed by my last St. Germain cocktail that I thought the liqueur had redeemed itself. Not so much. You might feel differently though, so here’s the mix: Hendricks gin, St. Germain, fresh pineapple and orange, orange bitters, echinaecea, hawthorn root, and elderberry liniment. I don’t recommend trying to make this one at home – but check it out if you’re in town.

I do, however, recommend the Abricot from Parc (below) – can’t go wrong with a Stephen Starr sip. This one was made with Ricard Pastis (think licorice), apricot liqueur and puree, lemon juice, and cloves. It was delicious…wish I could have eaten there too.


Ruby Red

November 16, 2008

Sorry, I’ve been a bit MIA lately. I recently started a new job, a somewhat new relationship, and a GMAT prep class all in the past month. Needless to say, things have been a little crazy, but that doesn’t mean the cocktails stop flowin’. Like weddings (a subject I know a lot about), cocktail culture seems to be recession proof. In good times or bad, people still need a drink. And though it seems almost every company is scroogin’ out on their holiday parties, I myself can’t wait for the holiday season to get here. In these tough times, a little mistletoe and Christmas Wrapping is sure to go a long way, and it all begins with my favorite holiday of them all: Thanksgiving.

Though I will be spending Turkey Day in LA with Ed (somewhat new relationship), I’ll be thinking of my friends at Blue Sage on Friday, when we would normally gather for Potato & Corn Chowder soup, Casbah salads, and a bottle of Beaujolais Nouveau. Luckily, co-owner Holly was kind enough to give me her secret recipe for a seasonal-inspired sip I can make on the West Coast.

Ruby Sipper
1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries
1 cup cranberry juice
1 cup pomagranate juice
2 cups sugar
Rind & juice of two oranges
Sparkling white wine/ Prosecco
Red sugar for glass rim
Whole fresh cranberries for garinsh

Add to a sauce pan coarsely chopped cranberries, juices, sugar & orange rind simmer until syrupy about ten minutes. Strain; cool syrup to room temp. Pour into squirt bottles( this makes it so to pour into champagne flutes). Pour 1-2 tablespoons syrup into sugar rimmed flutes, then top with sparkling wine. Garnish with cranberry.

*cranberry – ponagranate syrup is also great in vanilla vodka
*syrup lasts in refrigerator for two weeks.

One for the Teams

October 22, 2008

My hometown has a huge sports weekend coming up and it starts tonight with Game 1 of the World Series featuring the Philadelphia Phillies! From what I’m reading on Facebook, Philly fans could use some Liquid Courage to help us through our fight against the Tampa Bay Rays. Maybe this will help:

Liquid Courage
Courtesy of
6 oz. Vodka
6 oz. White Rum
8 Creme de Cacao
6 scoops Ice Cream
1 pint Milk

Add all ingredients to a blender and liquify until shake-like consistancy. Serve in beer mugs.

Eagles are coming off a bye week and it’s a must-win this Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons. If the past month is any indication, we’ll need a few shots come halftime — let’s hope its for touchdowns, not turnovers. Bartender/president of the Philadelphia Eagles Club of Hoboken, Furey, suggests Dr. Bombs, a shot of Jekyll & Hyde dropped into a pint of Monster or Red Bull.

And finally, though I am not a fan (owls are way cooler), Penn State has its biggest game of the season Saturday night against Ohio State. Since many of my friends are members of “the cult,” this one’s for you:

True Blue PSU Fan
Courtesy of the Nittany Lion Inn
2 oz. Belvedere Vodka
1/2 oz. Grand Marnier
1/2 oz. Blue Curacao
Sierra Mist

Like the glassware you see here? It’s hand-painted my none other than my talented mom, Margie Vagnozzi. Check out the rest of her collection at Morning Glories.

Oh, James…

October 20, 2008

So I’m still completely baffled by the sticker shock I encountered in — of all places — my hometown of Philadelphia this weekend. Maybe it was the astronomical cab fares that helped me justify shelling out $14 for a Jack Daniels-based cocktail. Then again, maybe it was the fact that said cocktail was wonderfully delicious and infused with local ingredients. Either way, James: I know you got one of Food & Wine’s best chefs of 2008 in the kitchen, but seriously, $14 in Philly?! My family and friends can no longer claim that NYC is too expensive to visit. Here’s what we were sippin’:

James-hattan: a manhattan made with orange, raisins and cinnamon-infused whiskey.
Grand Poire: a pear and fall spice (cloves, vanilla, star anise, cinnamon) infused vodka cocktail mixed with local pear puree, a splash of pineapple juice and Domain de Canton.

Before I end this post, I also wanted to give Anthony’s in the Italian Market an honorable mention. Though there were no cocktails consumed, three words say it all: Banana Nut Latte.

Just Peachy

July 29, 2008

Switchin’ up the layout of my blog and didn’t want to forget about this lovely lady,the Peach Blossom Martini, a favorite of mine that I sipped while celebrating my 31st birthday with my amazing brother, Justin, and his fabulous wife, Jenn.

The Peach Blossom Martini
Courtesy of Nineteen XIX
Stoli Peachik vodka
Dubonnet Red
Fresh Lemon Juice
Fee Brothers Peach Bitters
Homemade Simple Syrup