We’re kicking off a new year (Hello, 2021!) with an unusual show: First, due to the pandemic we know the restaurant and hospitality industries have been hit particularly hard. We’re dedicating the beginning of this podcast to them with a love letter to the wine and spirits community. More specifically, our first guest just appeared on St. Supery’s live virtual tasting as part of the #InJoy at Home Warm Winter Nights weekly series.
Poet Silvi Alcivar’s work has been featured in the Huffington Post, 7×7 San Francisco, Daily Candy, the San Francisco Chronicle, and TEDx. Her poem is shared below, and you can learn more at ThePoetryStore. She creates her tomes on her loyal red Royal typewriter, on demand. Looking for a beautiful piece to reflect your thoughts and feelings for a loved one? Be sure to peruse her poetry…
On the show, hear Silvi recite the poem or watch her read it in this video:
a love letter to the hardest hit
for the restaurant and hospitality industry
someday we’ll return
to dining in doors,
not giving second thought
to being seated at community tables, the bustle of brunch a sunday ritual,
small talk with strangers the amuse bouche
we’ve been hungering for, so too the
cacaphony of wine glasses clinking,
old friends laughing, meals marking
important life occasions or just
another evening, another afternoon,
the sommelier recognizing lovebirds
returning for an anniversary,
the children escaping to the lawn,
the chef calling out ready plates, the wait staff unmasked and smiling,
months of being flexible in pandemic changes
paying off, the passion for work never named,
just pivoted, and continuing to serve up
ingenuity and adaptation while we give
deep gratitude for keeping this community
nourished and fed with integrity,
grit, and plates full of
Silvi just launched a new art installation called “Break Open” in San Francisco’s Secession Art & Design. For this show, Silvi created 100 small pieces, each with a poem carefully placed inside a tiny glass bottle. Each poem begins with “in case of” and ends with “break open” to reveal the second part of the work. (The element that is typed on the scroll in the bottle is also revealed on the back of the piece so you don’t have to open the bottle unless you want to.) You can schedule a visit the gallery or view all of the pieces online.
Second, our next guest is Adrienne Stillman, a one-time co-host of this show a couple of years back. She is the co-founder, editor-in-chief, and event director of Dipsology, a curated guide and community for cocktail enthusiasts. She also oversees strategy and marketing for wine, spirits, and hospitality clients, and is a certified sommelier. She is the author of “Where Bartenders Drink” (Phaidon). A native New Yorker, she lives in Napa Valley, California.
Adrienne chose 2 cocktails from her new book, “Spirited: Cocktails from Around the World (610 Recipes, 6 Continents, 60 Countries, 500 Years),” for us to make during the show in celebration of Valentine’s Day. The new cocktail guide has already received praise, with The New York Times calling it, “A lavish, gift-worthy stunner.” And Epicurious stating, “This book might suffice as the only cocktail book a drinker needs.” Nicole Trilivas’ review of the book in Forbes provides many details on what you’ll find inside the covers.
Listen to the show to hear Adrienne’s stories behind these cocktails. We were utterly fascinated to learn their backstories. (And they were so delicious and easy-to-make for us newbies! Recipes below.)
- Pint glass, one part of a shaking tin or mason jar for stirring your cocktail
- Strainer (a cocktail strainer that fits on your shaker, or something like a small tea strainer, to strain out the ice; a big spoon can also work)
- Bar spoon or chopstick for mixing
- Jigger or measuring spoons
- Vegetable peeler and paring knife, for cutting garnish
- Ice cubes for stirring (regular ice cubes from your freezer are fine, you don’t need large ones)
- Glassware: 1 rocks glass and 1 stemmed glass (coupe, Martini, wine)
- 1.5 oz (2 tbs + 1.5 tsp) Campari
- 1.5 oz (2 tbs + 1.5 tsp) sweet vermouth
- Orange wheel garnish
Combine ingredients over ice in a rocks glass and stir 10 seconds. Garnish with a half orange wheel. Some variations we tried:
- For a sparkling cocktail, use only 1 oz / 2 tbs each Campari and sweet vermouth and top with Prosecco for a Negroni Sbagliato.
- Or use the original measurements, mix in a highball glass and top with club soda to make the Americano.
- To amp it up, use 1 oz (2tbs) each Campari, sweet vermouth and gin, bourbon or aged rum to make a Negroni, Boulevardier or Kingston Negroni respectively. Garnish with an orange twist instead of a half wheel.
- 1.5 oz (2 tbs + 1.5 tsp) gin
- 1.5 oz (2 tbs + 1.5 tsp) sweet vermouth
- ½ tsp Fernet Branca (increase to 1 tsp for a more bitter drink)
- Orange twist garnish
Put a few ice cubes and cold water into your glass (ideally something with a stem, but a rocks glass is ok too). Combine all ingredients in your mixing glass, add ice and stir gently for 25-30 seconds. Dump the ice water out of the chilled glass and strain in your cocktail. Using a vegetable peeler, cut a long swath of orange peel and squeeze over the drink to express the oils. Rub the peel around the rim of the glass and drop it in.
Happy Valentine’s Day!