Category Archives: Drinks

Coffee in Naples

 

Viva ‘a tazzulella: Naples and her love story with coffee and tradition

by FRANCESCA BEZZONE,  JUL 16, 2019
Coffee in Naples
The relationship between caffé and the city of Naples can only be called love. La tazzulella di caffé is the way Neapolitans welcome the day, recharge throughout  it and show friends they enjoy their company. It is the occasion to socialize, share opinions and discuss about the latest news and gossip.
La relazione tra il caffè e la città di Napoli non può che essere d’amore. La tazzulella di caffé è il modo in cui i napoletani accolgono il nuovo giorno, si ricaricano e mostrano agli amici che amano la loro compagnia. E’ l’occasione per socializzare, condividere opinioni e parlare delle ultime notizie e fare pettegolezzi. 

Coffee in Naples

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Coffee in Naples

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Starbucks in Italy

Starbucks in Italy

I’ve had espresso from vending machines in Italy that was better than any coffee I ever had at Starbucks. Now they intend to open a branch in Milan.Starbucks in Italy.
Here’s an excerpt from an article in L’Italo Americano that deals with the issue.

Does Italy Really Need Starbucks?

By francesca bezzone

” . . . there’s little doubt that Italian coffee remains the best in the world: it’s a typical case of “why should you change or improve something that’s already perfect?” Italian coffee is not a matter of variety, but of extremely high quality: from the selection of the coffee, to the way it’s toasted and brewed, every drop of caffé has to be absolutely perfect. And whoever had coffee in Italy knows it pretty much always is.”

Read the whole article HERE

Starbucks in Italy.

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Negronis

Negronis

Classic Negroni
Ingredients:
  • 1 oz. Campari
  • 1 oz. sweet vermouth
  • 1 oz. ginNegronis
Pour all 3 ingredients over ice in a rocks glass and garnish with an orange wheel.Negronis

Spagliato Negroni
A relation of the negroni. Spagliato means broken in Italian. This one replaces the gin with Prosecco.
Ingredients
  • 1 oz. Campari
  • 1 oz. sweet vermouth
  • 3 ozs. ProseccoNegronis
Add Campari and vermouth over ice in a flute. Stir and top with Prosecco and garnish with an orange twist.Negronis

The Old Pal Negroni Cocktail
This is a whiskey version. You can use Bourbon, Canadian or rye.
Ingredients:
  • 1 oz. Campari
  • 1 14 oz. whiskey
  • 1 oz. Dry vermouthNegronis
Add all the ingredients to a mixing glass and fill with ice. Stir and strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with an orange twist.Negronis

Each different but they all have Campari in common. Campari has been around for a long time. Gaspare Campari founded the company in 1860.  The basic Campari aperitif is simply Campari and soda with a lemon twist – simple and perfect. Throughout the years Campari has been noted for the beautiful graphics used in it’s advertisements. Here are a few – 

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French 75

French 75

French 75

We call it a French 75. In France it’s simply Soixante-Quinze. It was invented at the New York Bar in Paris in 1915 and named after a World War One,  75 millimeter artillery piece. It’s a lot like a Tom Collins – lemon, sugar, and gin – but with Champagne in place of club soda. It isn’t very strong so it makes a good morning drink, like a Mimosa.
Ingredients:
  • 1 oz. gin
  • 1/2 oz. lemon juice
  • 2 dashes simple syrup
  • 2- 3 oz. Champagne
    French 75
Combine all of the ingredients except the Champagne in a shaker filed with ice. Shake and pour into an iced champagne flute. Top it up with Champagne. Garnish with a slice of orange.French 75
French 75

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Saint Patrick’s Day

Saint Patrick’s Day

Saint Patrick's Day
There’s a popular sit-com called The Big Bang Theory. One of the characters, Raj, can’t talk to a woman unless he’s had a drink. His drink of choice, of all things, is a Grasshopper. I’ve heard of them but never had one, so I thought I’d try it.
It’s a simple three-ingredient cocktail –

Saint Patrick's Day

You put all the ingredients together, shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. You get a pretty green drink that I suppose is the same color as a grasshopper. It’s a pretty cocktail for Saint Patrick’s Day.

Saint Patrick's Day

It’s great for a sit-com but I’ll probably never have one again. It tasted just like a Peppermint Patty.

Saint Patrick's Day

FYI – If you replace the crème de menthe with brandy, you have a Brandy Alexander (much better).

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Vietnamese Iced Coffee

Vietnamese Iced Coffee (cà phê sữa đá)

Vietnamese Iced Coffee is nothing like the standard American iced coffee you might be used to. It’s really something special and requires a little patience. Whenever I’m in a Vietnamese restaurant I order it as soon as I arrive and let it brew while I’m eating and drink it just before I ask for the check.

Ingredients:
  • 2 tablespoons Café Du Monde Coffee
  • 2 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk
Equipment:
  • Vietnamese Phin Filter Coffee Maker –buy one here
  • 2 glasses – 1 small to brew coffee and 1 tall to mix coffee with ice
Preparation:
  • As the water is boiling add 2 tablespoons of coffee to the coffee maker and 2 tablespoons of sweetened condensed milk to the small glass.

    Vietnamese Iced Coffee

  • With the coffee maker on top of the glass, wet the grounds with about a tablespoon of the hot water and put on the top of the press and push down tightly. Fill with hot water and put the cover on. The coffee will slowly drip into the glass onto the condensed milk. This should take a few minutes. You can adjust the press as needed.

Vietnamese Iced Coffee

Vietnamese Iced Coffee

  • When the coffee is finished dripping, fill a tall glass with ice. Thoroughly mix the coffee with the condensed milk and then pour it over the ice in the tall glass.

    Vietnamese Iced Coffee

 


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Creme De Violette


Creme de Violette

Creme de Violette hasn’t been available in America for decades. My father used to complain that he couldn’t get it for his Pousse Caffe recipe. Well, it’s back and quite a few brands are being imported into the US.  

Creme de Violette


Aviation
Creme de Violette is an essential ingredient for an Aviation. A cocktail invented in 1916 in New York that gets the name from its cloud-like color.

Creme de ViolettePut all of the ingredients into a shaker filled with ice. Shake and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

 


Creme de Violette Pousse Caffe

Creme de Violette

 Starting from the bottom up – 

Slowly and carefully pour each ingredient down the side of a narrow glass.

Creme de Violette


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Christmas Punch

Christmas Punch

My Christmas Punch is adapted from Duffy’s 1956 edition of the Official Mixers Guide

Christmas Punch
Mix and chill first 5 ingredients and strain into a punch bowl over a block of ice with citrus fruit slices frozen inside.* Add chilled wine and chilled club soda just before serving.
Christmas Punch
* FruitBerg
If you chill the punch with ice cubes, they’ll melt and dilute it. It’s better to use a large chunk of ice. It’s more interesting if you add some fruit and make it colorful.
Slice various citrus fruits. Place a few slices of each in a small (sandwich size) zip-lock bag. Add enough water to cover the slices and hold them together when frozen. Make about 4 or 5 bags and freeze them. When frozen, place the contents of each bag into a larger zip-lock bag or a Tupperware container, add more water and freeze to make a large block of ice and citrus slices – a fruitberg.
Christmas Punch
Christmas Punch

David Benoit – A Charlie Brown Christmas

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Celishia’s Aged Eggnog

Here’s a guest post from my niece Celishia, an excellent cook and egg nog maker.

Celishia’s Aged Eggnog

(adapted for Alton Brown’s recipe)

 

Store-bought eggnog is cloying and sweet, so thick you feel like it might be eating your tongue as you swallow it and I always wanted to like it more than I did.  So when I discovered Alton Brown had a recipe for Aged Eggnog I was intrigued, we happened to be keeping urban chickens at the time so I had plenty of fresh eggs. It was delicious!   I have been making it for years now and it is always a well received, even with Eggnog haters. This year I happened to have a bunch of empty half gallon mason jars so I decided to double the recipe and then divide it into thirds because carrying all the quart jars to and from the basement is trying.  A single recipe has always yielded about 3 quarts for me, so the math says I should end up with 3 even half gallons. The initial recipe says as long as you maintain 20% by volume alcohol content then you should be safe.   Here is Brown’s basic recipe:
Ingredients:
  • 12 large eggs (pasteurized if you need peace of mind)
  • 1 pound sugar
  • 1-pint half-n-half
  • 1-pint whole milk
  • 1-pint heavy cream
  • 1 cup Jamaican rum
  • 1 cup cognac
  • 1 cup bourbon
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (plus more for serving)
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Preparation:
Store eggs are fine, but I really have an obsession with fresh ones.  We no longer keep chickens but I was able to score 2 dozen from a friend of mine who has a farm about 40 minutes away. First separate the eggs into yolks and whites, saving the whites for another purpose. ( I like to make meringues or fold them into an egg casserole/quiche for an easy breakfast.)  I do weigh out my sugar for this recipe, but you can use a volume conversion because the booze is what makes it safe, not the sugar content.   Take the yokes and beat them into the sugar, at first it will be bright yellow with a lumpy, grainy texture, but soon it will even out into a pale yellow liquid that should fall off the whisk in a thick ribbon. The effort required is not enough to wash a mixer, so just use a whisk.

Add your nutmeg to the eggs and sugar, whisk in.  I measure the remaining ingredients into my jar to mix them, starting with the creams and adding the booze. Closing the lid and giving them a good shake, I then began to pour them into my egg mixture while whisking.

Once the eggs, cream and booze are nicely combined you are finished!  I pour the eggnog back into my jar add the lid and take it to the basement fridge to age. It must age for two weeks but can age much longer, I think Alton once said he makes his around New Year’s day every year.  The longest we’ve ever had it is October to January, and it was great in January.

Here’s a link to Celishia’s blogFreerangering


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