since September 2011 job musician/composer


The Jungle Bird Cocktail 18 Mar 2015
2:14 pm

Where’s the Campari…

Sangria Blanc 13 Jun 2012
1:26 am

Yes, that is the Canon bar.
I love that St. Germain carafe too…
Happy summer!  - except it’s still raining and cool in Vancouver and I bet it’s the same in Seattle =P

Tiki Time Cocktail 14 Jun 2012
4:35 pm

Sounds delicious!

You’re shooting at the Rob Roy in Seattle aren’t you?

Thanks, Charlotte!

Sharelle Klaus - DRY Soda 19 Jun 2012
11:35 am

These are in Canada too, thankfully (in Whole Foods and Gourmet Warehouse in Vancouver)!
The lady and I always have a bottle or two around - usually Lavender or Cucumber (though Blood Orange is a favourite of mine as well). She actually craves the Cucumber like crazy.
Didn’t know DRY came from Seattle! Lots of awesome things do :)
Thanks for being awesome.


Earl Grey Southside Cocktail 6 Jun 2012
10:14 am

Thank you, Charlotte! This sounds excellently delicious.
Great advice for steeping the tea at double strength. I had tried to make tea cocktails in the past by just using regular strength tea and found my cocktails were over-diluted by the time I got the tea flavour I wanted.


Caesar Cocktail 6 Jun 2012
9:51 am

This is a staple of Western Canadian drinking for sure. However, most folks I meet outside of B.C. don’t drink these. When my brother comes up from San Francisco he’s always reminded how weird it is that every restaurant offers them and that there are both Clamato and vodka ads on TV all the time for Caesars :)
Personally I think it’s gross, but I kind of hate tomato juice to begin with so I’m the wrong person to ask!
I do enjoy tasting drinks that have a savory/umami element to them, as there are so few and it’s a very different experience.

Thanks for featuring a Canadian drink, Robert!

For anyone looking for a more sophisticated drink from us above you,
“The Vancouver” http://www.shakestir.com/features/id/366/the-vancouver-cocktail
and “The Hotel Georgia” http://www.shakestir.com/features/id/340/the-hotel-georgia
are Vancouver’s only historical drinks that we know of…



Caesar Cocktail 13 Jul 2012
6:24 pm

It is quite a delicious dessert cocktail!
(Most actual booze drinkers will find it very sweet, hence the “dessert,” but it’s also a good one for weening any nay-sayers onto gin)

The presentation at Tales on Canadian cocktails (by an all B.C. crew!) will include these two drinks, plus The Caesar, and one of my favourites - The Toronto. Victoria’s Shawn Soole uncovered some great information in print to help us actually pinpoint this one to Toronto: http://and1morefortheroad.blogspot.ca/2012/02/toronto-cocktail.html

Canadian cocktail history is limited or at the least very muddled, but I’m proud we can claim a couple good ones!

Come back soon, Robert!
Also - great to see all these new videos!

Attention Cocktail 16 May 2012
9:48 am

This is one of our favourites at home (or its drier variation, The Arsenic & Old Lace). Great to have you back, Robert!!

TheBalch: I find R&W very perfumey, and only use it very, very sparingly if I want the violet colour (which can be accomplished using other kinds, but I only have two at home). My favourite of the ones I’ve tasted is the Tempus Fugit from California. It’s much less sweet and subtle so you can really get floral aromas and flavours from it, and it doesn’t have any artificial colouring in it either - which is great unless you want that Aviation-blue or Attention-pruple. You can also add a little more into your drink as I find it balances much easier.



Biter Cocktail 1 Feb 2012
12:02 pm

Delicious, Robert. I have donned this week ‘Chartreuse Week’ and have been trying a lot of new things with my bottle at home. I’ve noticed that all the cocktails you have here are gin (and the Champs Elysee with Cognac), perhaps we could see one with whiskey soon? I’ve been tasting some very interesting ones (including a Last Word variation from Milk and Honey using rye, lemon, Green Chartreuse, and Maraschino).


The Negroni Cocktail 21 Jan 2013
11:19 pm

The “true Italian style” (i.e. traditional/original style) would be to serve it on the rocks. Serving a Negroni up is the ‘American style’ - not that there’s anything wrong with that ;)

Maguey Harvest Cocktail with Tim Master 12 Dec 2011
9:36 am

It’s cool to see mezcal popping up more and more these days, and see some great mixologists come up with some awesome cocktails to play with all that smoke! (Awesome cocktails like the Division Bell from Mayahuel in NYC, which everyone should try if you decide to pick up some mezcal).
Sadly, mezcal is impossible to find here in B.C. (the only kind we can get is the joven Jaral de Berrio). Actually, so is tequila - there are only a handful of brands available and every one is easily twice the price it is in the U.S.
Your Maguey Harvest is perfectly timed for me too, as I’m just writing a series on my blog for tequila and mezcal - so I’ll have to share this!

Question, Tim mentions that “alcohol will show through when it’s a little warmer,” do you find certain flavours come through more? Does the taste of a lot of drinks really change when served hot? I can’t think of any that I’ve seen served both ways. Which way do you enjoy this one more?

So, I’ll be trying this with the only kind of mezcal I can get. Thank you Kathy and Tim for sharing! This looks like a fantastic fall/winter cocktail.


WTF Cocktail 28 Nov 2011
10:30 pm

WTF is right…
Bonal is an aperitif, yes?
but I’ve never seen it anywhere or tasted it…
Love the videos, Jamie, please keep them coming if you can!


Sherman Cocktail 28 Nov 2011
10:26 pm

Delicious cocktail, Robert.
I often have trouble with absinthe cocktails, as it can be quite an overpowering flavour and I have trouble getting out only a dash or two. I must find a dasher top I suppose…


Sherman Cocktail 29 Nov 2011
8:49 am

Oh excellent idea, thanks Robert!


Hakam Cocktail 28 Nov 2011
10:24 pm

I am currently ecstatic because I was able to pick up a bottle of Carpano Antica for $26 US in Seattle.
I am from Vancouver where you can only find it in one particular liquor store - when they’re lucky enough to get shipments - and it’s only for sale for a whopping $90 CAD.
It’s a wonderful vermouth, but I definitely wouldn’t use it for everything.
I did just have a Boulevardier with Rittenhouse rye and Carpano Antica the other night at the Pourhouse and it was possibly one of the best cocktails I’ve ever had.


Hakam Cocktail 29 Nov 2011
8:54 am

Some things are completely out of whack! B.C. has the worst taxes in Canada as well, and we pay twice as much or more for a lot of items, a few dollars more on a lot of spirits, but interestingly amari are cheaper up here. It’s almost entirely due to taxes, but there are also other factors when the products come from other countries. Most things coming from the U.S. seem to get taxed harder than products coming from other foreign countries.
We also don’t have access to nearly as much here, including bitters, gins, American rye (though that situation is getting better), and tequila. Our rum selection, though is just as diverse but completely different. There are so many things you can only find in independent stores here, which means the prices get hiked up even more.
I actually recently wrote about the difference between Washington and B.C./Vancouver if anyone is interested:

Congratulations on your wedding by the way, Robert!


Grapefruit Negroni Cocktail 28 Nov 2011
10:16 pm

The Negoni is definitely a classic, and a delicious one. Bitter is the last part of the palate to develop, so it’s also an acquired taste, yes. Enjoying a Negroni the “Italian way” also makes it easier to handle (which is on the rocks rather than straight-up).
I agree that classic cocktails should be revered, enjoyed, held in high regard, etc, but if bartenders didn’t experiment and come up with variations on a theme, mixology wouldn’t exist and cocktail books would be only a page long.
The Negroni itself is a variation on the Americano (or Milano-Turino), so imagine if in the early 1900’s Count Negroni’s bartender had said “no! I will not add gin to the Americano because it’s a classic” - then we wouldn’t even be having this conversation and watching this video!
Being closed off to experimenting with cocktails is not only no fun, but also very limiting!


Chrysanthemum Cocktail 25 Jan 2012
12:18 am

I am currently going through a Benedictine binge (having just picked up my first bottle for the home-bar), and also going through a phase of trying to better develop my vermouth palate. It’s just not a flavour I enjoy that much in general, and as such I was apprehensive to try some of these drinks you’ve been posting using vermouth as a base.
But I sucked it up and went for it, and now that I’m sipping this one, I have to say thank you for sharing, Robert! It’s a seriously delicious and interesting cocktail. I love how the herbal flavours from each ingredient play with each other here.
Another vermouth-heavy drink worth trying (especially if you’re like me and don’t love the flavour of vermouth by itself) is the Swan Cocktail, courtesy of one of my favourite bars in Seattle, The Hideout:


Casino Cocktail 4 Oct 2011
9:48 pm

I was coincidentally listening to this new episode in the background while blogging about how much I hate when I end up at bars where the bartenders shake everything!
I’m definitely a gin guy and will be mixing this up momentarily… thanks Robert!

PS, I’ve never seen Old Tom gin anywhere (of course I’m in Canada where it’s hard to find a lot of things). Is it easy/difficult/impossible to find in the US?

Unusual Negroni Cocktail 20 Sep 2011
9:48 pm

Wow, I’ve never heard of this before! So much fun.
A Negroni is a pretty regular drink at my place (though I’ve started making it 2:1:1 with gin : punt e mes : campari), and this sounds very light and delicious.

Clover Thyme Club Cocktail 20 Sep 2011
9:35 pm

Hi Kathy! I love this variation, gin pairs with herbs so well… the Clover Club is actually a favourite of mine already, and it’s really fun to mix it up.
I am curious - I’ve always been told to shake egg white drinks without ice first really vigorously, then add ice and shake again… I believe it’s to emulsify the egg better and make a more frothy drink… does this matter to you? Do you notice a difference?
Love your show, thanks for this one!

Bridal Cocktail 20 Sep 2011
9:27 pm

Robert, this is very similar to the Martinez… is this what you mean by “original” martini?

Bridal Cocktail 21 Sep 2011
8:36 pm

The Absinthe Bar in San Francisco actually makes a “Martinez ” with 2:1 gin to Dolin dry vermouth, with orange bitters, a dash of maraschino, then both a lemon twist and an olive. This is arguably not really a Martinez, but needless to say there are a lot of variations. I feel like I’ve never seen just one recipe for it.
Either way, I do enjoy a vermouth heavy Martinez, but I enjoy the Bridal better being a big fan of the gin flavour. Thanks Robert!

Bridal Cocktail 21 Sep 2011
8:39 pm

I also find it interesting that I’ve heard the early incarnation of the Martini included orange bitters, yet the Astoria cocktail from the Old Waldorf-Astoria Bar Book is a 2:1 Martini with orange bitters… confusing!

Maracuja Mosquito Cocktail 18 Sep 2011
11:10 pm

This is fantastic, Charlotte!
Gin and basil is something I’ve really enjoyed lately, especially with Chartreuse like in Le Monstre Vert on Jamie’s show. Love the cocktails you’ve been doing here!

Royalist Cocktail 7 Sep 2011
12:34 am

Robert, I have to ask…
why do you choose to use Martini & Rossi? I feel (or rather, my taste buds do) that it’s the most awful tasting of any vermouth I have tried, and I consistently ruined cocktails with it until I discovered much nicer and just as affordable vermouths, for example Noilly Prat dry or Cinzano sweet. As well, I’ve had a few bartender friends concur that Martini & Rossi is garbage and I shouldn’t be using it unless I’m forced to…
So, I’m very curious! Do you actually like the flavour? Or is it perhaps a sponsor of the show?...

Really enjoy your show and the whole SSN! You guys have helped bridge the gap for me from cocktail hobby to cocktail passion and lifestyle!


Royalist Cocktail 7 Sep 2011
3:50 pm

Interesting! Thanks for the feedback. For the most part lately I’ve been using Punt e Mes for sweet vermouth, which is a treat - especially in a Manhattan (and you can switch the Angostura for orange bitters too). I had the pleasure of having a Manhattan with Carpano Antica the other day, which was wonderful (but would cost me $90 for a bottle if I wanted it for my own bar).
I didn’t know that Noilly Prat changed their formula in the US.
Here in Canada it basically costs your soul to buy most everything - if you can find it at all (it’s only the last few months it seems that I’ve been able to get American rye in our non-independent liquor stores… and it still costs more than double what I’ve found in the states!).
Thankfully the situation is getting better and better with the increase of general interest in mixology and cocktails, and there are more and more amazing bars and bartenders here in Vancouver. Sadly, B.C. has the most expensive liquor prices in Canada though, and I think I will just have to resort to visiting Seattle to stock up ;)
Anyway, I’m rambling. Thanks again, and I look forward to more delicious cocktails!

Fourth Regiment Cocktail 11 Jan 2012
2:13 am

Finally got around to trying this cocktail (with Peychaud’s, Regan’s Orange #6, BT Celery, and Old Overholdt)...
it’s so complex and interesting! I love it. I noticed the comment about this being a “wet” drink, not having the spirit dominate, etc, but I feel actually the rye character is very prominent. This is definitely one I have to show off…
Thanks, Robert!


Clipper Ship Cocktail 14 Oct 2011
7:47 pm

oh my gosh I’ve never tried St. Germain with absinthe before, this is delicious…
I have to be very sparing with my St. Germain though, it runs $65 per bottle in B.C.!! How much can you get it for south of the border?

Clipper Ship Cocktail 20 Feb 2013
3:51 pm

We’ve been basically the same for years now, with Canadian being worth more for quite a while too. The biggest issue for us in B.C. is taxation, where it’s not only the highest in Canada but products are also taxed higher if they’re priced higher (so a $20 item in the US may only be $22-25 here, but a $100 item could be $300 here, for example). St. Germain is only ~$45 in Alberta. 
Availability is also an issue as many companies aren’t interested in distributing in Canada due to the aforementioned tax issues, among others. My bar is stuck with smuggling many great products (creme de violette, Cocchi Americano, any good vermouth, etc) from Seattle when we get the chance.
It’s quite a wonder we have such a thriving cocktail scene here in Vancouver.

And yes, St. Germain is still worth the price tag ;)