This past Saturday, the Oregon Bartenders Guild and host David Wondrich provided drinks and discussion at Teardrop Lounge for an enthusiastic group of imbibers, bar professionals, and journalists. Really, I can’t say much more on it than hasn’t already been said by Jeffrey Morgenthaler (A brilliant fellow, by the way). However, I do have a few things to add.
All drinks served, from the Rocky Mountain Punch to samples of the Blue Blazer were just fantastic, and really representative of various bits of the history of drink. Mr. Wondrich and the members of the OBG presented the drinks to a delighted crowd, with bits of discussion from IMBIBE! and even some new updates about the Professor’s life and times, with more than a few toasts being raised to his honor. While all the drinks were fantastic, some really stood out for me. The Improved Whiskey Cocktail, it was noticed, had the Don the Beachcomber 1-2 punch of Absinthe(or Pastis) and Bitters, which made it just as improved as any Don drinks should be, though developed well before the Beachcomber was born.
One of the niftier things, of which I believe Craig snapped a picture, was the original Hawthorne strainer that Mr. Wondrich had brought with him. He had brought quite a few interesting toys, all shiny and silvery and strong, made to last, as opposed to the snap-off julep strainers we can get nowadays. Hooray for eBay, I suppose.
Another drink that stood out for me was the Buck and Breck, a drink named for th 15th American President James Buchanan and his vice president, John C. Breckenridge. Besides the drink being a lovely mix of Champagne and Cognac, and me being a sucker for the bubbly, this drink had great presentation with its sugar-frosted glass. The glass is wetted, coated with sugar, and dried, for a lovely frosted effect.
After the event, much fun was had by a few locals and visitors touring the various places in Downtown Portland, including Ten 01, Red Star, Clyde Common, and Gilt Club. The most exciting part was being served a Moscow Mule in actual copper cups at Gilt Club, again, toy-jealousy rearing its ugly head.
I would highly recommend getting on the Oregon Bartenders Guild mailing list for info on any upcoming events. These ain’t no Jaeger Double-shot special nights, no sirree.
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