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Monthly Archives: November 2016

I'm the mobile beverage director for Thanksgiving dinner. Aperitif cocktail service calls for two low-alcohol concoctions and a big backup. 1) The so-called "San Francisco Cocktail", with equal parts sloe gin, dry vermouth, and sweet vermouth (dash each Angostura and orange bitters). And 2) an experimental "Lickety Split" with dry vermouth, St. Germain, and Averna (calls for Lucano, which I couldn't find on short notice). But no Thanksgiving is complete without a Wild Turkey Manhattan – my only Wild Turkey on hand is the long-discontinued and much-missed 10 year old Russell's Reserve, before they split the brand from Wild Turkey. My current favorite sweet vermouth is from Miró in Spain. The Germain-Robin brandy is to foritfy champagne cocktails, should they be needed to start everyone off quickly.


Exciting Thanksgiving wine lineup. All California, heavy on Anderson Valley, in particular the Elke winery (thanks, @winemaker_matt). Starting with Madame Elke Anderson Valley Brut 2011. Still whites are Navarro Anderson Valley Dry Riesling 2013 and Freeman Ryo-fu Russian River Chardonnay 2013. Centerpiece is the Littorai Platt Vineyard Pinot Noir 2012 (in magnum!), alongside the Elke Blue Diamond Donnelly Creek Anderson Valley Pinot Noir 2007. We'll wrap up with Fräulein Elke Late Harvest Gewürztraminer 2013.




Crew setting up for Sturgill Simpson at the spectacular Fox Theater in Oakland.


The London Souls opening for Sturgill Simpson at the beautiful Fox Theater in Oakland.


Peter Levin, under the watchful eye of Les Paul, playing Hammond organ and a custom "Vibranet" (which he says Stevie Wonder also has) in a fun show at the Iridium.