Boozy Beggar Picture of the Day – Always make one for yourself when there’s an extra glass. Army & Navy Cocktail #celebchefball #mealsonwheels

Had the honor of representing Bar Deville at Meals on Wheels Celebrity Chef Ball.  Our cocktail for the evening was the Army & Navy. We went for something simple yet elegant, a classic cocktail that could also pair with food (traceable back to a 40s cocktail book that corrected the recipe to lean more tart than this version).  A rich mouthfeel from the Small Hands Orgeat lends almond and orange blossom notes to bright lemon and gin spices.

2 oz London dry gin (we used Hendricks because of event sponsorship)
1 oz Small Hands of orgeat
0.75 oz fresh lemon
Lemon peel

Shake first three ingredients together with ice for 15 seconds. Strain into coop. Express lemon peel over the cocktail and discard.

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Boozy Beggar Picture of the Day – tea, lavender, honey, gin

2 oz hendricks gin
1.75 oz earl grey tea (i steeped two bags of Stash earl grey green and black in 10 oz of water)
0.75 oz brovo spirits lavender liqueur
0.75 oz fresh lemon juice
0.5 oz honey syrup (8 oz of clover honey and 8 oz of water heated together til honey dissolved)

Shake. Strain. Not sure I would serve this over ice again. And it needs a pretty garnish. Would pair well with tea-centric food, salads, grilled fish or chicken.

BroVo lavender is becoming rarer and rarer as production moves to other products. If you can’t find it…infuse the honey syrup with the lavender (a few lavender sprigs would do it), and use a whole oz.

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Boozy Beggar Picture of the Day – Contemplation Cocktail

A very contemplative cocktail for a night in reading, writing, relaxing. A mix of spices and citrus, herbs and roots, that’s subtle, and very much an integration of all the parts.
1.5 oz Biercee’s Thesis-Antithesis Gin
1 oz Brovo Witty dry vermouth
0.75 oz 1821 Bitters Tonic Syrup
0.75 oz BroVo Ginger liqueur
Club soda and a lemon thyme garnish.

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The Session: The Hard Stuff

My pal Tasha Goodard (AKA MetaCookbook) took over The Session, a monthly beer blogging exercise with a rotating host, and a focus on a single topic or nexus of topics. For September, Tasha posted:

I’m asking my fellow beer bloggers two related questions:

  1. What do you want people in beer culture to be talking about that we’re not?

  2. What do you have to say on the topic(s)?

These needed to be up yesterday, but work overwhelmed my time to sit down and gather my thoughts.

  1. Flavored Beer, of the ginger and lime variety, the vanilla and coffee, etc, often says “with natural flavors added” on the label. I’d like to know more about what that means in the beer world. In spirits, and it food, it means lab-extracted flavor concentrates and lab-created flavoring chemicals, have been added to beef up or otherwise help “design” the flavor of the product.
  2. I wouldn’t be all that impressed by extract additions and flavor compounds, just so someone can make 1,000,000 barrels of a beer, instead of 15,000. We can save the future of craft beer (there’s a reckoning coming eventually) by diversifying what we do (and saving specialty for specialty), and keeping real ingredients in beer is hugely important. I’d like to hear from those who brew with real spices how they feel about the beers made with anything but. But I’d also like to hear a defense of lab-defined flavor. More on that in another post.


Oak Park Micro Brew and Food Review, August 15th

The Largest Zero Waste Beer Fest in the Midwest!

Hosted by and benefitting Seven Generations Ahead, who’s mission is to promote the development of ecologically sustainable and healthy communities.

Saturday, August 15th.  3PM – 7PM.

200 beers! 70+ breweries. Illinois Craft Brewer’s Guild Replicales (saison this year). Brewery list here.

Including these pals and favorites of The Boozy Beggar: Alarmist, Aquanaut, Moody Tongue, Atlas, Penrose, Begyle, Pipeworks, Revolution, Brickstone, Destihl, Dryhop, Solemn Oath, Empirical, Flossmoor Station, Forbidden Root, Half Ace, Two Brothers, Church Street, Lake Effect, Maplewood, Marz Community

Tickets are running out – $50 tickets here. 40 Beer Samples with ticket, souvenir glass.

Also featuring:

2015 Participating Restaurants


The Kinderhook Tap

  • Grass-fed Bison Sliders
  • Skewered Currywurst (all natural bratwurst)
  • Vegan Poblano & Black Bean Tamales

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Mancini’s Italian Bistro

  • Pizza
  • Gelato
  • Mozzerella Sticks
  • Fried Ravioli
  • Italian Sausage Sandwich
  • Homemade Italian Potato Chips


Khyber Pass

  • Chicken Tikka Masala with Basmati Rice
  • Saag Aaloo with Basmati Rice (vegan)
  • Tandoori Chicken with Basmati Rice
  • Vegetable Samosas (vegan)

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Maya Del Sol

  • Guacamole and chips
  • Cochinita Pibil Tacos – marinated pork shoulder, pickled red onion and queso fresco


Linda’s Country Cupboard

  • Tomato Relish (Mild, Medium/Hot, & Helliciously Hot)
  • Chow Chow Relish (Mild, Medium/Hot, & Helliciously Hot)
  • Cranberry and Pear Relish (Mild & Medium/Hot)

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Maple Leaf Farms

  • BBQ Duck Sliders: BBQ Pulled duck with apple, jicama and duck bacon slaw on a duck fat toasted bun

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  • Porchetta Sandwich with Herbed Yogurt and Roasted Red Onion
  • Grilled Kalbi Short Ribs – Porcini Crusted
  • Bar Snack Cookie with Pretzel, Chocolate Chips and Peanut Butter


Puree’s Pizza & Pasta

  • Grilled Andouille Sausage with a Crisp Remoulade on French Bread
  • Grilled Zucchini on a Bun with Bruschetta Tomatoes and Fresh Parmesan Cheese

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Taste of Brasil

  • Menu Pending

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  • House made veggie burger with choice of Linda’s Country Cupboard relishes
  • Marinated grilled fish sandwich with bacon sesame slaw

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  • Chorizo stuffed dates
  • Snack pack
  • Burgerito


Boozy Beggar Picture of the Day – The Shadow Knows from Libertine in Minneapolis

The Shadow Knows.
Rye whiskey, black peppercorn infused gin, demerara syrup, creole bitters, smoked absinthe.
A lot going on flavor-wise, in a cocktail that is essentially just a Sazerac variation. If anyone would be interested in a post about infusing gin with black peppercorn, I’d be into playing around. Best to use a simpler gin, but one that is citrus-forward, for the infusion. I think you could also substitute Chicago Distilling’s Finn’s Gin, which has a zip of Szechuan Peppercorn, in a variation ON this variation. As for smoking the absinthe, your best bet is to watch this video with an acquaintance of mine, Sother Teague, and look into the second half of it. Not a cheap endeavor, but if you’re into smoke-infusing liquids and liquors, this is for you.