My favorite new hobby of 2015 — mixing alcohol with other stuff and drinking it

Oh ok, it’s a little bit more serious than that.  Hi, and welcome to my blog.  Here’s the down and dirty: in years past, I was a horrible drinker.  It was usually quantity over quality, and the quantity was pretty boring.  The horrible poser with a Banana Republic shirt trying to sound cool by buying a craft beer and using terms like “hoppy” — yeah, I was that guy.

But a few months ago I was saved from a pedestrian drinking life.  Like all things, salvation came at a bar — the DC/NOVA region is home to a fortunate concentration of wonderful cocktail bars (I’ll be offering drunkish Yelp reviews of those in subsequent entries).  One thing led to another, and I started actually reading about how these magic elixirs were made.  Five months ago, I bought a shaker, and then lemons, bar guide(s), and then gin…and I haven’t looked back.

Since then I’ve been doing a lot of experimenting — it’s been a ton of fun!  The craft cocktail movement is such an imaginative little world, and even someone like me on the outer, outer periphery can enjoy it.  So I envision this blog being two things 1) a record of my meandering search for the best homemade cocktail and 2) a celebration of my new hobby.  Should be a good time.

My first review is for “The Fitzgerald” which I’m going to guess is named after F. Scott, because he drank a lot.  I found this recipe after some exhausting research into historic cocktails, i.e. I googled “gin” with the ingredients I had on hand.  The recipe is nice and simple:

2 oz gin
.75 oz fresh-squeezed lemon juice
.75 oz simple syrup
2 dashes angostura bitters

See, you can do that!  I used my homemade ingredients (I’m a purist) and Beefeater Gin, because I like those red uniforms on the bottle.  I don’t know what angostura bitters are, but people seem to use them a lot, and I can buy them at Giant.  This is what it’s supposed to look like (let’s pretend mine looked as elegant):

Verdict: 3.5 out of 4. Gin is really growing on me — it’s smooth and not whiskey.  It shines in this wonderful but oh so simple drink, which took me to an early summer outdoor party.  The lemon juice provides a great stinging tease as you swallow, and a taste I can only credit to the mysterious bitters finishes it off.  I hope that made sense — whatever, I loved it and could drink five more, which is a sure sign of its quality.  Thanks F. Scott!

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