Author Archives: Fredo Ceraso

December 20, 2013

Happy Hour: Mezcal Winter Cocktails

by Fredo Ceraso

Once you are through slurping down mugs of Tom & Jerry bowls and hot buttered rum then please consider a few winter cocktails with a smoky twist, mezcal. The two drinks we feature in Happy Hour this month are nothing alike but leave you with that campfire warmth from palette to pinky toe. One cocktail […]

October 11, 2013

Happy Hour: The Affinity, Your New Fall Cocktail

by Fredo Ceraso

Affinity: a liking for or an attraction to something. I discovered this long-lost cocktail one cold October day, thanks to my friend and barman Maxwell Britten during his tenure manning Freeman’s backroom bar in New York City. The leaves were swirling on this windy, chilly afternoon, and I was downtown. I sauntered down the namesake […]

August 30, 2013

Happy Hour: The Saigon Correspondent

by Fredo Ceraso

Fact: A gin and tonic is the quintessential summer cocktail. My grandmother Margaret knew this and would serve the iconic drink from a gallon handle of Gordon’s gin topping it off with a lime and Schweppes tonic water. She made the switch over from Rye Manhattans after Memorial Day and it was gin and tonics […]

August 9, 2013

Happy Hour: The Cobbler and the Flirt

by Fredo Ceraso

The Cobbler is the elder statesman of summer cocktails. At its core, the Cobbler is a sour-style cocktail (spirit, citrus, sugar), which has spawned a host of delicious descendants. The most popular type during the drink’s hey day was the Sherry Cobbler. This libation was first chronicled by Jerry Thomas in his ground-breaking How to […]

May 31, 2013

Happy Hour: La Louisiane

by Fredo Ceraso

Once upon a time in the Crescent City, there was a culinary institution and hotel named the La Louisiane Hotel and Restaurant down Iberville Street in the French Quarter. La Louisiane, as it was know to the locals, was opened in 1881 by Louis and Ann Bezaudun in an old wine merchants space. Their nephew […]

March 15, 2013

Happy Hour: The Improved Japanese Cocktail

by Fredo Ceraso

In honor of Umami Mart’s sixth anniversary/ lease-signing and the Japan Week celebration in NYC, this month we spotlight the Japanese Cocktail for Happy Hour. We will review the cocktail’s origins, its ingredients, and offer an improved adaptation that pays homage to Japan. Cocktail historian David Wondrich gives a through history of the libation in […]

February 8, 2013

Happy Hour: Fraise Sauvage for Valentine’s Day

by Fredo Ceraso

“Champagne for our real friends and real pains for our sham friends.” – A toast from Harry’s Bar in Paris circa 1920 This Valentine’s Day, make sure your pre or post-romantic dinner drink is the classic champagne cocktail. The French 75 is the grand dame of champagne cocktails and has been the basis for dozens […]

January 11, 2013

Happy Hour: The Midnight Stinger

by Fredo Ceraso

Minty, refreshing, and undeniably potent, the Stinger cocktail is part reviver, part ultimate nightcap. The cocktail originates around the fin de siecle, but was not memorialized until Tom Bullock’s Ideal Bartender (1917). The Stinger was a favorite of the high society set who regularly had a brandy digestif after supper. The classic recipe is one […]

September 18, 2012

Happy Hour: Pig + Punch Gets Its Due

by Fredo Ceraso

This past July, the culinary and spirits festival Tales of the Cocktail (a.k.a. Tales) celebrated its 10th Anniversary. The world’s best craft bartenders, taste makers, brand ambassadors, cocktail bloggers, liquor sponsors, and cocktail aficionados plus a legion of media and public relations people descended on the Crescent City for a week of booze filled seminars, […]

June 6, 2012

Happy Hour: Manhattan Cocktail Classic 2012 Recap

by Fredo Ceraso

“Now, alcohol makes a big man small and can lead to life of crime. Drinking rum makes you skin-and-bone, and you cash in before your time. Bootleg gin for your Mickey Finn till you don’t even know your name. You’re a basket case right on your face, there’s only one guy to blame. Oh Mister […]