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Drinks

Hickory Daiquiri Dock: A toast to parenting

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After a long day of playgrounds, finger painting, diapers and a couple of rounds of the world’s favorite backseat games of “But Why?” and “Stop Touching Me!” anyone who has had the joy of being a new parent (or babysitter) can understand the allure of Mother’s Little Helper. (If you do not know what that is or never felt the compulsion to imbibe, please do not tell me. Just let me sip the tea of old age and poor child-rearing skills.) Since Valium seems to have fallen out of favor, Tim Federle’s Hickory Daiquiri Dock: Cocktails with a Nursery Rhyme Twist (Running Press, $15.00) gives parents and parent sympathizers a 21st-century alternative. Disguised cleverly as a picture board book, Hickory…

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WIN — The secret to an easy and satisfying cocktail? SHAKE!

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There comes a time in every amateur bartender’s life when you have to leave the college staple of jungle juice (or in my Caribbean circles—curiously strong rum punch) in the past along with your twin bed and hastily written research papers. Even I had to be (not so) gently admonished that Stoli Razberi and Red Bull was not a proper drink. As we mature, expectations are raised. However, as Eric Prum and Josh William remind us, cocktails should still be fun, simple and social. Shake (Wine Enthusiast) is the manual for everyone who wants to dazzle at their next get-together without an overwhelming amount of preparation. No longer are good and proper drinks relegated to the new hip bar. The…

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Why is the rum gone? Trick question—it isn’t.

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Alcohol, like most things, can often be intimidating for the very reasons that it can be rewarding. As many spirits, aperitifs, bitters, and liqueurs exist as could possibly be dreamed up, and with the current boom in the craft cocktail and distilling industries, even a bona fide expert must learn to expect, and hopefully enjoy, the unexpected. Working your way through this labyrinth is just that: work. When I was first learning to bartend, my manager consistently emphasized this point—that enjoying alcohol is about developing taste through a discovery of spirits. His favorite milepost on that journey was rum. “Everybody always thinks they’re into whiskey;” he was quick to point out; “but just because they haven’t realized they love rum…

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Spend Valentine’s Day at home with a drink in your hand

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Valentine might as well be the patron saint of prix fixe menus, restaurant stress, and trying to get busy on two stomachs full of béarnaise sauce. While ordering a pizza on Super Bowl Sunday may mean long wait times, and cooking a perfect Thanksgiving turkey may spell disaster, neither chore compares to the hurdle of going out to eat on Valentine’s Day. So why not take a page from those other celebrations of epicurean indulgence? Why not eat (or in this case, drink) at home? Whether Valentine’s Day was initially popularized in order to root out the traditions of a pagan holiday (aren’t they all?), or by Chaucer as a backdrop for his Parliament of Foules, today’s frustrations revolve around…

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