The Friday Tipple: Fizzy Friday

You’ve done it again, Boozers. You told yourself “I will not have a third helping of mashed potatoes” and you stuffed yourself on stuffing and then there were three kinds of pie. We know how you feel: bloated, bleary, and blubbery.

After sucking down a bottle of Grampa’s homemade dandelion wine and those shots of Wild Turkey with your cousin Gerry behind the garage, Black Friday is a bit of a blur. What you need to do is soothe your tum. Enter bitters. There are two types of bitters: digestive bitters and cocktail bitters. Both types are basically herbs and roots that are used to flavor alcohol, usually having a bitter or bittersweet taste. Cocktail bitters, like Angostura, Bittermens, Fee Brothers, and Urban Moonshine, are generally used sparingly to flavor cocktails, much as you might add salt and pepper to your food. Digestive bitters, like Campari, Pimm’s No. 1, and Cynar, can be drunk straight up or on the rocks as well as in cocktails.

We like to make our own cocktail bitters and just finished up a batch of what we call Chocolate Stout Bitters (want a bottle of your own? drop us a line), featuring fresh hops, espresso beans, and cocoa nibs, but don’t be intimidated by our ingenuity. Drag yourself to the local liquor store and grab any bottle of either cocktail or digestive bitters, along with some tonic water or club soda. Down the Fizzy Friday in one go and you’ll be back in fine fettle before you can say “Alka Seltzer“. Cheers!

Fizzy Friday

There are as many ways to make a Fizzy Friday as there are recipes for Thanksgiving leftovers. You can choose to go the digestive route and pour a generous slug of Campari (our personal favorite) over ice and top it off with a splash of club soda. However, we’re going the other direction today, for reasons that will soon become clear.

Tonic water or club soda

Cocktail bitters (Bitters, Old Men Restorative Tonic is good here)

Gin (as always, we’ll be reaching for the Catoctin Creek Watershed Gin)

Fill a lowball glass with ice and add 4 ounces of tonic water or club soda. Add 20 drops of bitters — yes, that’s right, we said 20 — and drink it down quickly. Then fill the glass with more tonic or soda, throw in some gin, and you’re good to go. Great Aunt Joan’s waiting for you to drive her to Walmart.

The Friday Tipple: Pumpkin Pie

You know what’s coming, American Boozers. Yes, Thanksgiving. Watching Uncle Greg wrestle with the turkey, being forced by Grandma to sit at the kiddie table, again (“I’m sorry, honey, there just isn’t room for everyone at the big table. And the kids love you so much, dear.”), and that classic moment when your mom insists that you show everyone your impersonation of Adolf Hitler. Good times.

What you really need after you’ve eaten the last bite of Aunt Irma’s famous Ambrosia salad with the gummy bear surprise, is a drink. Something festive for which you can truly give thanks. Enter the Pumpkin Pie cocktail — believe us, you need this far more than you ever needed any traditional piece of pie. Made with our signature Pumpkin Juice, we keep it simple by adding Pinnacle Whipped Cream Vodka.

Yes, we know, we were skeptical too: “Whipped cream vodka? Not possible.” However, it turns out that you really can make vodka taste like pretty much anything under the sun, and, while we know that we could probably come up with our own housemade version, we suggest that you give yourself a break. Buy the Pinnacle, whip up a quick batch of Pumpkin Juice, and loosen your belt. You know you need to build up your strength for Black Friday. Happy Thanksgiving!

Pumpkin Pie

This drink tastes astonishingly like a slice of pumpkin pie, but without the fiber.  We added just a soupçon of Nocello, which imparts a slight undercurrent of nuttiness — rather like your family, we suspect.

3 ounces Pumpkin Juice (recipe here)

1.5 ounces Pinnacle Whipped Cream Vodka

Splash of Nocello

Whipped cream and nutmeg for garnish (optional, but do it anyway)

Pour the pumpkin juice, vodka, and Nocello in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake vigorously and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with whipped cream and nutmeg.