At Art Beyond the Glass at the world famous Los Globos in Silver Lake, Kim and Ben are joined by guests Zahra Bates, Daniel Djang, Clare Ward, the people behind Art Beyond the Glass. We’re talking the Old Pal today. If you’re at home you’ll need a mixing glass, a mixing spoon, ice, equal parts rye whiskey, dry vermouth, campari. One ounce of each, throw it in the mixing glass with ice, stir it up and strain over a chunk of ice, or if you prefer, drink it straight up! With ice, as the ice melts, the flavors, the dilution of the drink will change. Pay attention the the proof of the base spirit. Last week was Negroni week, and we want to keep the party going. The Old Pal, originated by Harry Craddock, it is a Negroni variation, the same man who made the Boulevardier, different aged bourbon, so it will hit different parts of your palette. Zara Bates, who used to be the bar manager Providence. Daniel Djang, who works for Discover LA. LA Bartender Clare Ward, works over at Hippo says about Negroni variations, “They whet your appetite, open up your palette and lubricate your conversation. Art Beyond the Glass is in its eighth year with some of the biggest brands in the industry taking part. Chris Day, Julian Cox, former LA bartenders were in the house and the organization of the event was superb. Super cool bars with super cool themes showed up at Art Beyond the Glass this year, putting up pop up bars, very experiential, to support Beautify Earth, a charity that supports improvements to Los Angeles to create murals all over the city, Pete Jones from ERB will design a mural with a team and the money raised from Art Beyond the Glass will go to the supplies and the education behind Beautify Earth. Listen to the origin of how Art Beyond the Glass and the complexities of Cognac from Zara, an ambassador for Courvoisier Cognac came to be on Equal Parts: A Bartending Podcast About Cocktails.
On this week’s show we are talking about the Negroni. Easy to make, stands the test of time, nothing quite like the Negroni, it’s bitter and sweet, just like life. First experienced back at the Yard with Blake who put out Grandpa Bud’s Negroni. It’s boozy, it’s strong, for men and women. It has food possibilities, following a gastronomical tradition as far as Campari and vermouth. That category of Italian bitters, apparetif was designed to open the palate. The best Negroni in the world comes from Dante’s in New York, in the west village. They have a display case with vintage Campari bottles. They have great Garibaldis too. Campari was birthed in another cocktail, the Americano. The Americano came about because of the American expats during and after World War One. Then the Negroni apparently is named after bibulus, globetrotting Florentine count who liked his drinks strong. Go to theginfoundry.com for a more detailed version of the story. Equal parts, just like this show. One of the four or five prototype cocktails, one one one. If you’re a home bartender, try the Negroni. Campari is the bitter, vermouth and gin. The Negroni made in the glass is disappointing. You want to stir the Negroni for the dilution, just like Old Fashioned made in a mixing glass. “The bitters are excellent for your liver, the gin is bad for you, they balance each other” Orson Welles. On the rocks or up? Depends on thirst and temperature, if it’s up it should be confused quickly, but on the rocks you can take your time, turns into a longer drink. If you follow the equal parts recipe, it’s a little sweet, a little extra dilution. Carpano Antica vermouth, a great, heavy vermouth was the first one the guys used, but now the lighter Italian or French vermouths are a nice variation. What is Vermouth? It is fortified wine. Infused with botanicals, herbs and spices, but also fortified, made stronger, like brandy, port, Madera, but vermouth is aromatized, typically a secret Monastery recipe. Good for you in the way Campari is a bitter, with medicinal qualities, good for you before or after a meal. Style of gin, London Dry for Ki, but there is so much variety that it’s fun to explore and experiment with local American, New World gins. Old Tom gin, with a woody taste. An aperitif is great for after a meal. Campari is an alcoholic liqueur, an aperitif, with different spirit strengths, depending on the country to which it is sold. Made of fruits and alcohol and water, produced by the Campari Group, invented in 1860 in Italy, colored with Carmine dye, made of beetles. First plant opened in 1904, and we love Campari! Kim remembers his dad drinking Campari and soda. There are several red bitters depending on your region. liquor.com has a list of more aperitifs, Peychaud’s, Luxado, Capaletti, Martini, Select, Contrato, Luna Amara and more. Ben prefers London dry gin as well, likes the botanical heavy more so than the citrusy American gins. Ben likes an orange twist. The Negroni has become so famous it has a Negroni Week, which is coming up! For those at home, familiarize yourself with the jigger and the ounce, not mL. Generally its an ounce of each, in a mixing glass, stirred with ice, then strained up in a coup or into a rocks glass, strained with ice and garnished with an orange zest and twist.