Nora Maynard's Recent Articles
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The Celluloid Pantry: Chocolate “Mouse” and Rosemary’s Baby (1968)
“No, no – you’ll have to give me the recipe.” In Rosemary’s Baby (1968), an ambitious actor (John Cassavetes) and his childlike bride (Mia Farrow) move into a creepy New York apartment complex (the Dakota), and soon make the acquaintance of the strange old couple who are their neighbors. The wife in the pair, Minnie (played with mischievous banality by Ruth Gordon) is the kind of woman who invites herself in and peers into all the kitchen cupboards.
May 3, 2019
The Celluloid Pantry: Mulled Wine and It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)
So this angel walks into a bar’.In Frank Capra’s It’s A Wonderful Life (1946), the angel is the dim, but well-meaning Clarence Oddbody (Henry Travers, right), and the bar is Nick’s, a place full of hard-drinking, hard-bitten cynics.George Bailey (James Stewart, left), reeling from a tough day, quickly orders a double bourbon, but his 293-year-old Mark Twain-reading guardian angel takes some time making up his mind:“I was just thinking of a flaming rum punch.
May 3, 2019
Straight Up: DIY Cocktail Onions
There’s nothing like the briny crunch of a cocktail onion to complement a Gibson’s bracing coolness (in fact, garnished any other way, the drink would just be called a MartiniWe had a bag of raw pearl onions in the pantry, leftover from another recipe, and decided to try whipping up a batch for ourselves.
May 3, 2019
Straight Up: DIY Simple Syrup
With warm-weather-drinks season fast approaching (Mojitos, Caipirinhas, Mint Juleps!), now’s a good time to stock up on a key ingredient in many refreshing summer cocktails: simple syrup.Also known as bar syrup, sugar syrup, or gomme, simple syrup plays well in any chilled drink calling for a dash of sweetness.
May 3, 2019
Straight Up: Raw Egg Whites in Cocktails (and Ramos Gin Fizzes) Are Back!
Raw egg whites. They’re not just for your breakfast glass of Tiger’s Milk anymore. With the recent revival of certain pre-Prohibition cocktails, they’ve been finding their way back into some spectacularly elegant drinks.
May 3, 2019
Straight Up: Using Shiso in Cocktails (Mojitos and More)
I’ve always loved shiso‘s distinctive peppery-bright flavor. While the softly furred, frill-edged leaves have the texture, piquancy, and slight sweetness of fresh mint, their complex flavor also brings to mind the savory pungency of basil with gentle undertones of sultry cumin. This is an herb with personality – and potential.
May 3, 2019
Straight Up: Will You Help Save the Daiquiri?
A tart, cool thirst-quencher that merges the rich warmth of rum with the zippy tang of lime, the Daiquiri is the perfect cocktail to put even the most office cubicle-weary of us in an island mood.But sadly this sultry, storied favorite of both JFK and Ernest Hemingway is well on its way to becoming an endangered species: The Daiquiri needs your help.
May 3, 2019
Straight Up: How to Make the Best Ice Cubes for Summer Cocktails
With the mercury tickling the top of the thermometer this week, today at Straight Up, it’s All About Ice.All ice cubes are not created equal. And while you might not know it, these little frozen blocks do much more for a cocktail than simply chill it. For the full scoop on ice, read on…Why Some Melting Is GoodContrary to popular belief, a little melt can do wonders for a drink.
May 3, 2019
Straight Up: Non-Alcoholic Cocktails that Impress
Infused syrups. Muddled fruit. Zippy garnishes. Stylish glassware. Why should drinks made with a shot of the hard stuff have all the fun?Move over, Shirley Temple. “Soft” cocktails are growing up.This is the philosophy of the folks behind the bar at New York’s Eleven Madison Park. Here, alongside the usual booze-laden summer classics, is an intoxicating array of alcohol-free composed drinks.
May 3, 2019
Top 5 Intriguing Cocktail Names Straight Up Cocktails
Half the fun of cocktails is all the fascinating lore behind them. Here’s a roundup of some of our favorite cocktail names – and the colorful stories they bring to the table with them: Harvey Wallbanger. There’s something kind of 1950s, Alfred E.
May 3, 2019
Recipe Review: Melissa Clark’s DIY Maraschino Cherries
Last summer I spotted Melissa Clark’s ultra-simple and delicious-sounding recipe for homemade maraschino cherries in the food section of The New York Times, and was intrigued. I made a mental note of it – and promptly forgot.Then, the other night, while out for cocktails, a friend mentioned she’d made her own maraschinos. But the conversation soon bobbed and wove in a different direction (we were at PDT, and there were taxidermied animals everywhere!).
May 3, 2019
Culinary Cocktails: The Spicy/Cool Flavors of India Straight Up Cocktails
Cool slabs of watermelon and cucumber. Fiery slivers of hot pepper. Dark dollops of sour tamarind. Bright dashes of orange juice and muddled cilantro. These are some of the unexpected flavors and textures featured in the cocktails I sampled at the New York, New Indian restaurant, Tabla, this week.The best part? Each deliciously different drink was simple enough to make at home.
May 3, 2019
Escape to Bermuda with Dark and Stormy Cocktails Straight Up Cocktails
Whether you’re catching some rays at a beach-side getaway, or enjoying a relaxing “staycation” at home, nothing beats the August heat like a tall, cool Dark and Stormy.And, best of all, the national drink of Bermuda is almost as easy to make as it is to sip.A simple highball-style cocktail, the Dark and Stormy is made with one part dark rum to four parts ginger beer.
May 3, 2019
End-of-Summer Cocktail: Whiskey Peach Smash Straight Up Cocktails
As summer cools and mellows into fall, it’s time to begin shifting the way we eat – and drink. Why not celebrate the Autumnal Equinox with a cocktail that mixes the best of both seasons?A warm/cool, tart/sweet concoction of muddled peach, mint, and lemon, shaken together with whiskey and a touch of simple syrup for balancing sweetness, the Whiskey Peach Smash is the perfect sipper for this transitional time of year.
May 3, 2019
Cocktail Basics: All About Bitters Straight Up Cocktails
What a difference a drop makes. Warm, rich, spicy, and astringent, bitters can transform a cocktail, balancing its flavors and adding new dimension and depth. An essential ingredient in classics such as the Manhattan, Old Fashioned, Sazerac, and Champagne Cocktail Originally marketed as medicine, bitters go way back to the early days of American cocktails, when pharmacist Antoine Peychaud added a dash or two to the alcoholic libations served up at his apothecary shop in 19th Century New Orleans.
May 3, 2019
All in the (Cocktail) Family: Sours Straight Up Cocktails
Margaritas. Daiquiris. Sidecars. It wasn’t too long ago that I realized some of my favorite drinks had something in common. Each is a member of a certain tart and delicious extended cocktail family: the Sour.The perfect combination of citrusy freshness and mellowing sweetness, backed by the rich warmth of alcohol, Sours are one of the earliest cocktail types on record (Brandy Sours were big in the 1850s), and their modern cousins (Cosmos, anyone?) are still holding their own.
May 3, 2019
Cocktail Basics: DIY Grenadine Syrup Straight Up Cocktails
Sugar + Water + Pomegranate Juice + HeatThe formula for this home bar staple is simple. A deep garnet-colored syrup with the distinctive tart/sweet flavor of pomegranate, grenadine is really just a slightly fancier cousin of simple syrup that has earned a name all its own.
May 3, 2019
A Marathon of NYC Cocktails: The Brooklyn, the Manhattan, and the Bronx Straight Up Cocktails
No cocktails for me this week. That is, at least not until Sunday evening – then I know what I’m having…The morning of November 2 (and, um, most of the afternoon) I’ll be running 26.2 miles through the five boroughs of New York City on nothing but water and Gatorade. But after that (I hope, at least), it will be time for celebration.
May 3, 2019
Repeal Day Tipple: Absinthe Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Today is Repeal Day, the cork-popping anniversary of the end of that long dry spell from 1920 to 1933 that was Prohibition. To honor the occasion, we’re taking an up-close look at a spirit that, until just last year, had been sentenced to a special ban of its own: Absinthe.“The Green Fairy” as it’s also sometimes known, has a bad (although irresistibly romantic) reputation as dangerous, hallucinatory stuff.
May 3, 2019
Cocktail Basics: Citrus Garnishes 6 Ways Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Wheels, slices, wedges, spirals, twists – and flamed twists. When it comes to citrus garnishes, cocktail recipes can get quite specific. Here’s everything you need to know to garnish like a pro: THE BASICS Wedges Used in Margaritas, Dark and Stormies, Bloody Marys, and countless other fresh-tasting classics, citrus wedges are usually served perched on the rim of a glass, and can be optionally squeezed and dropped into the drink once it’s served.
May 3, 2019
Recipe: Hot Rum Cow
The other night I was looking for something warming to sip and decided to try out a recipe from a cocktail book brought back by a friend on a recent trip to Belfast: The Merchant Hotel Bar Book. As I flipped through the “Hot Drinks” section, something immediately caught my eye: Hot Rum Cow. With its whimsical name and tempting list of ingredients (piping hot milk, dark rum, vanilla, aromatic bitters, and sugar), this Cow sounded like a winner.
May 3, 2019
7 Super-Simple Citrus Cocktails Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
With all the fresh, juicy citrus flooding the fruit stands right now, it seems the perfect time to take a look at some quick and simple cocktails powered by Vitamin C.And when we say simple, we mean simple. Each of these classic recipes uses just one kind of freshly-squeezed citrus fruit, and one kind of liquor (okay – and maybe a dash or two of plain old sugar to ease the pucker factor). That’s it.
May 3, 2019
All About Vermouth
A key ingredient in cocktail greats such as the MartiniManhattan Taking its name from the German word “Wermut,” meaning wormwood, vermouth is an aromatic fortified wine flavored with herbs, roots, bark, flowers and other botanicals. It comes in two basic styles: sweet and dry, each with different cocktail uses.
May 3, 2019
Cherry Heering 2 Ways for Valentine’s Day Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Looking for something a little special for the 14th? A dark, luscious liqueur with an all-natural black cherry taste, Cherry Heering pairs with chocolate as beautifully as it does Champagne, making it a sweet choice for Valentine’s Day.Still made today from the original 1818 recipe, this old Danish favorite has been enjoying a bit of a cocktailian revival lately.
May 3, 2019
Whiskey Old-Fashioneds (With Really Good Fruit)
Fruit or no fruit? That is the question (or one of them, anyway). Like Martinis, Old-Fashioneds are one of those drinks that’ve been around long enough to have developed more than a few variations. A satisfying blend of whiskey (preferably straight rye or bourbon, though some recipes use Canadian Whisky or a blended scotch), bitters, and sugar, stirred together with ice (and sometimes topped up with club soda), the Old-Fashioned makes a great wintertime drink.
May 3, 2019
Recipe Roundup: 3 Roaring-Red Ways to Love Gin Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Considering that the MartiniBut this past weekend, that’s just what I did – I mixed gin with three different red apéritifs (Dubonnet Rouge, Campari, and sweet vermouth), in three classic cocktails: The Dubonnet, the Negroni, and the Gin and It.The results were delicious.Dubonnet Cocktail(makes one drink) 1.5 ounces gin1.
May 3, 2019
Maple Syrup Cocktails: A Sweet Way to Celebrate Spring Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
It’s sugaring-off season. As spring creeps across the maple forests of the Northeast, the sweet, watery sap is rising, ready to be tapped from the trees and boiled down to a dark, rich syrup.So why not toast this new season with a cocktail rounded out with the deep, woodsy sweetness of maple? I recently tried out two recipes that are sure to get your sap flowing:The first recipe, the Maple Leaf, is a variation on the Whiskey Sour.
May 3, 2019
Infused Vodkas (and DIY Tips!) from Sub Rosa Spirits Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Here at The Kitchn, we’ve talked a lot about the welcome new “culinary” approach to cocktail-making. About the growing interest in cooking up homemade syrups and garnishes, in juicing fresh, seasonal fruits, and about the enjoyable practice of flavoring alcohol by infusion at home (Faith’s quince ratafia (aka “Booze Froot”), and Kathryn’s nocino).
May 3, 2019
Recipe Review: Earl Grey MarTEAni Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Another title for this post might’ve been “The Earl Grey MarTEAni Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Mix My Favorite Cocktail.”I don’t know about you, but there are plenty drinks I love to order in bars and restaurants, but for some reason or another, never get around to attempting at home.
May 3, 2019
All About Aperitifs Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
It’s finally Friday. Spring is coming into full, glorious bloom, and Tax Day is – for better or for worse – behind us. Why not start off the weekend with a bright, refreshing aperitif? Apéritif is a French word, which, like its Italian counterpart, aperitivo, comes from the Latin aperire, meaning “to open.
May 3, 2019
Favorite Spring Cocktail: Gibsons – with Ramps! Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Take a Martini, that sublime mixture of cool, crisp gin and dry vermouth, and garnish it with a pickled onion instead of a green olive. Now you have a GibsonBut what if that delicately savory, crunchy onion happens to be a ramp?
May 3, 2019
All About Gin and Tonics Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
The tinkle of ice. The scent of fresh-cut lime and the cool, bittersweet, tongue-tickling effervescence of that first sip. A perfectly seamless blend of crisp, junipery gin and thirst-quenchingly zesty tonic water, it’s no wonder the Gin and Tonic is one of the most perennially popular patio drinks. THE STORY In the beginning, it was all just medicine.
May 2, 2019
What is the Best Fizzy Water for Your Cocktail?
This Good Question comes in to us from Amber, just in time for the beginning of tall, cool drink season: At the risk of sounding uneducated about bar staples, I’m posing my question to you Kitchn foodies. I’m wondering…What’s the difference between tonic water, mineral water, seltzer, carbonated water, and club soda? They all seem like fizzy water alternatives, and they may be identical.
May 2, 2019
Recipe Review: Hemingway Daiquiri Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Not that you need a special reason to enjoy a delectably citrusy rum drink on a summer night, but this weekend you’ll have one: Sunday, July 19th is National Daiquiri Day.Already a big fan of the Classic Daiquiri, I decided to expand my repertoire this year by trying out its cousin, the Hemingway Daiquiri.
May 2, 2019
All About Gimlets Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
A real gimlet is half gin and half Rose’s Lime Juice and nothing else. It beats martinis hollow.The Long GoodbyeIf that quote from Chandler isn’t enough to make you want to try this tangy old-time cocktail, maybe Julie & Julia or Mad Men will be…Lately this old classic’s been getting a lot of play. Julie Powell sipped this simple drink while working her way through a challenging year of French cooking.
May 2, 2019
Recipe Review: Lillet Sin Cocktail Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Want to toast the end of the summer in style? How about mixing yourself up a cool, elegant Lillet Sin?Despite its naughty name, the Lillet Sin is actually a pretty virtuous drink. A refreshing concoction made with the silky smooth orange-flavored aperitif Lillet Blanc as a base, the recipe also calls for fresh ginger, lime, sugar, and mint, all topped up and cooled off with ice and sparkling water.Earlier this month I was staying at a house with a garden full of mint.
May 2, 2019
Recipe for Warmth: Hot Apple-Ginger Toddy Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Looking for a hot drink to cozy up to on a crisp fall evening? Something with the sweetness of apples and honey, the bright zing of ginger and lemon, and a little extra boozy warmth? How about a Hot Apple-Ginger Toddy?I’ve been on a ginger tea kick lately. Late at night, craving something warm, but still a little bracing, I’ve been slicing up chunks of the spicy root and steeping them in hot water.
May 2, 2019
Shake Winter with a Jack Rose Cocktail Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Margaritas, Daiquiris, Whiskey Sours, Sidecars… With their perfect balance of tart and sweet, drinks belonging to the boozy, citrus-y sours family have always been some of my very favorites. But up until this week, there was one classic sour I still hadn’t tried making at home: the Jack Rose cocktail.With its cheery blush pink color and triple-fruit flavor, this drink is good for brightening up a dark winter night.
May 2, 2019
On Using What You Have: Mixing ApplecarsStraight Up Cocktails and Spirits
With all the fresh, juicy citrus in season right now, I’ve been on a bit of a sours kick. Jack Roses, Bourbon Sours, Margaritas, and Daiquiris all sound refreshingly good. The other night, I was in the mood for a classic sour I hadn’t made in a long time: the Sidecar. Problem was, I was missing an important ingredient. Although I had fresh lemons and Cointreau on hand, I didn’t have any cognac – or armagnac.
May 2, 2019
How to Mix a Cocktail with a Boston Shaker Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Ever wonder how to use a Boston shaker, that 2-piece set of glass and metal tumblers pro bartenders seem to handle with such efficiency and ease? For an up-close, step-by-step tutorial, read on.When preparing a shaken cocktail, you have two basic types of mixing vessels to choose from: the cobbler shaker (see slideshow) and the Boston shaker set.
May 2, 2019
All About Bloody Marys Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
The Bloody Mary is one of those decades-old drinks that seems to have earned itself as many die-hard haters as it has devoted fans. But love it or loathe it, this tangy, spicy, vodka and tomato juice-based cocktail’s a classic. In honor of Breakfast Week here at The Kitchn, here’s an up-close look at this savory brunch tipple/hangover cure.
May 2, 2019
After-Dinner Tipples: Digestifs Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
It’s been a full week of dinner coverage here at The Kitchn. How about a little glass of something to round off the meal? We’ve posted about apéritifs before, those appetite-stimulating lead-ins to an evening meal, but today we’re going to be looking at the very last course in the alcoholic beverage menu: the digestif. As the name might suggest, digestifs were originally believed to aid digestion.
May 2, 2019
Recipe Review: Icy-Cool Green Tea Mojitos Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Looking for something tall, cool, thirst-quenching – and a little different? How about this fresh spin on the Mojito, made with a healthy measure of ice-cold green tea? This week, in celebration of the arrival of warm-weather drinks season (Pimm’s Cups, Margaritas, Gin and Tonics, Daiquiris!), I thought I’d expand my repertoire a little and try out a new recipe. So I turned to a book with lots of fresh cocktail ideas: Organic, Shaken and Stirred by Paul Abercrombie.
May 2, 2019
Recipe Roundup: 20 Summer Cocktails with Fresh Herbs Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Mint. Basil. Shiso. Lemon Verbena. Rosemary. Cilantro. Dill. Whether they’re muddled, infused, or simply snipped for a pretty and fragrant garnish, fresh herbs make a wonderful addition to summer cocktails. Here are 20 herbal (and boozy) drink recipes we love:MintCool, astringent, and ever so slightly sweet, mint plays up the luscious flavors of fruit and complements the rich warmth of alcohol. No wonder it’s such a summer cocktail staple. Mint Julep: The ultimate mint cocktail.
May 2, 2019
Tiki Drinks at Home: Marvelous Mai Tais Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Cool. Rummy. Fruity. Fun. Tiki drinks have been making a big comeback lately. This summer, how about mixing yourself up a couple at home?Tiki recipes can seem a little daunting to the home mixologist. Sometimes they call for obscure ingredients like falernum and orgeat syrups. Often a single drink will be made with multiple types of rum. And then there’s the barware. Ceramic mugs shaped like Polynesian wooden carvings, bamboo stalks, and even skulls. Where to begin?
May 2, 2019
DIY Recipe: Boozy Cherries 2½ Ways Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Ever since I first tried Melissa Clark’s quick and simple maraschino cherry recipe, I’ve been hooked. This delicious way of preserving seasonal fruit for year-round cocktails and desserts has become a cherished summer ritual for me. But this year, I thought I’d try something new.
May 2, 2019
Keep Cool with a Winner: Russian Caravan Cocktail Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Looking for a cool, new summer drink to toast these last weeks of August? How about this prize-winning cocktail with a refreshingly romantic – if somewhat surprising – list of ingredients? (Don’t worry, it’s easy to make too.)The Russian Caravan Cocktail is the creation of home mixologist Vitaliy Bukhtulov, who perfected his original recipe for a contest held in New York City last month, the Brandy Library’s Bourbon Cocktail Challenge, sponsored by Elijah Craig.
May 2, 2019
Playing with Favorites: The Manhattan Straight Up Cocktails and Spirits
Have you ever played around with the cocktail classics? Switched up the proportions of – or maybe added a little of this or that to – say a MartiniMargaritaDaiquiriLast Sunday, I was cooking an early dinner after cheering on some friends in the NYC Marathon. My husband offered to make me a drink and started browsing though our home bar for inspiration.
May 2, 2019