17 09, 2015

Benjamin Franklin’s Milk Punch Recipe

September 17th, 2015|Cocktail Recipes|0 Comments|


Benjamin Franklin’s Milk Punch

By: Steven Rodia

In 1763, after returning from his diplomat duties in Europe, Benjamin Franklin penned a letter to his friend, James Bowdoin, and enclosed a recipe for milk punch.  The recipe called for brandy, citrus juice, water, and sugar combined with boiling milk, then strained of the milk’s curd.  The milk washing clarifies the alcohol mixture and yields a much smoother and clear drink.  It may sound strange, but it is quite a refreshing concoction.


Milk Punch Recipe:

As with many cooking tasks, there is more than one way to reach the same goal.  I will [...]

30 06, 2015

Plum Cocktail Shrub Recipe

June 30th, 2015|Cocktail Recipes, Recipes|0 Comments|


Pear Shrub Recipe

By: Steven Rodia

Many of my food and drink experiments are driven from reading about new or exciting recipes.  When I started reading Amy Stewart’s The Drunken Botanist, I became interested in the history of shrubs.  The shrubs I’m referring to here are acidulated beverages made of fruit, sugar, and other ingredients that became popular in America’s colonial era.  Long before refrigeration, shrubs were an effective way to keep fruit from spoiling and also allow for easy transportation of the flavored, fruit infused liquid.  Sailors were said to use citrus [...]

30 05, 2015

I.W. Harper 12 Year Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey Review

May 30th, 2015|Spirit Reviews|0 Comments|

I.W. Harper 12 Year Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey Review


By: Steven Rodia

Proof:  86 Proof (43% ABV), Aged 12 Years

Rating: 4 Barrels (4 out of 5)

Originally started by Isaac Bernheim around 1872, this whiskey has traditionally been export-only.  Rich in history, the I.W. Harper story is quite fascinating.  Recently, the current owner, Diageo made the decision to bring I.W. Harper back to the United States after 20 years.  They will offer a 4 and 15 year old Kentucky Straight Bourbon to U.S. customers starting this year.  The one I will review today is [...]

17 05, 2015

Michter’s Barrel Strength Kentucky Straight Rye Whiskey Review

May 17th, 2015|Spirit Reviews|1 Comment|

Michter’s Barrel Strength Kentucky Straight Rye Whiskey Review


Proof:  108 Proof (54% ABV), No Age Statement (Batch 15C210)

Rating: 4 Barrels (4 out of 5)

Recently, I had an opportunity to sample Michter’s new Barrel Strength Kentucky Straight Rye Whiskey.  Michter’s was very kind to mail this sample bottle all the way to Japan, so I should note that the gesture was much appreciated.  That said, I have always been a fan of their Kentucky Straight Bourbon and I enjoyed the last bottle I purchased of their US1 [...]

22 04, 2015

Kentucky Derby Prep: Mint Bitters & Sous Vide Mint Infused Bourbon

April 22nd, 2015|Cocktail Recipes, Recipes|0 Comments|

Kentucky Derby Prep: Mint Bitters & Sous Vide Mint Infused Bourbon

By: Steven Rodia


With the Kentucky Derby coming up in the first week of May, it’s time to get your seersucker dry cleaned and to sharpen your cocktail game.  Since 1875, no drink is more synonymous with the Derby than the Mint Julep.  That was my inspiration for the very, very simple infusion detailed below and I hope you enjoy.  Of course, this infusion could find a home in several warm weather cocktails, particularly the grilled watermelon and bourbon cooler recipe from the Culinary [...]

8 03, 2015

Homemade Tonic Water Recipe

March 8th, 2015|Cocktail Recipes, Recipes|1 Comment|

Homemade Tonic with a Sous Vide Twist

By: Steven Rodia


Some of the new boutique tonics on the market are very tasty, but they can also be very expensive.  One of my favorites happens to be a concentrate that you need to dilute with club soda.  What I’ve included below is an adapted version of a recipe that I first read about on Jeffrey Morgenthaler’s blog.  I lowered the level of cinchona bark in a effort to avoid any toxicity concerns.  The end result is a delicious tonic concentrate that you can add to [...]

15 02, 2015

Wild Turkey Rare Breed Barrel Proof Bourbon Review

February 15th, 2015|Spirit Reviews|0 Comments|

Wild Turkey Rare Breed Barrel Proof Bourbon Review


By: Steven Rodia

Proof:  112.8 Proof (56.4% ABV), No Age Statement (Blended from 6, 8, and 12 year old whiskies)

Rating: 5 Barrels (5 out of 5)

Wild Turkey Rare Breed Kentucky straight bourbon whiskey is a mix of 6, 8, and 12 year casks and is bottled at barrel proof.  In Japan, the bottle I found was marked at 112.8 proof and had a slightly smaller bottle containing 700ml, instead of the US 750ml.  This bottle is from the new batch of [...]

20 01, 2015

Nomiku Sous Vide Bitters Recipes

January 20th, 2015|Cocktail Recipes, Recipes|0 Comments|

Sous Vide Bitters


By: Steven Rodia


Last year, I discovered the Nomiku immersion circulator while reading a story from Chef Chris Consentino.  The simple-to-use device cooks food sous vide, or under vacuum, in a sealed bag at a controlled temperature.  One of the big benefits is that you can cook meats, vegetables, and even things like cocktail additives without losing any of the moisture associated with traditional cooking methods.  Because this method surrounds the food with a water bath at a constant temperature, you’re able to cook items consistently and evenly throughout.  You are also free to place herbs and flavoring ingredients [...]

4 01, 2015

Nikka Coffey Grain Japanese Whisky Review

January 4th, 2015|Spirit Reviews|0 Comments|

Nikka Coffey Grain Japanese Whisky Review


By: Steven Rodia

Proof:  90Proof (45% ABV), No Age Statement (Generally aged between 8-12 years)

Rating: 4 Barrels (4 out of 5)

Produced in Nikka’s Miyagikyo location, this whisky was distilled using a Coffey still imported from Scotland in the early 1960’s.  Coffey stills are said to give the flavors of a whisky more character than the modern continuous still can impart.  The grain used in the mash bill is mostly corn with a small amount of barley.  Normally, this type of grain whisky would be [...]

24 03, 2014

Specialty Meat Online Purveyor Review

March 24th, 2014|Food Reviews|0 Comments|


Specialty Meat Online Purveyor Review

Finding Great Meat In Cyberspace

By: Steve Rodia

Late last year, I found myself in a strange predicament.  I wanted to send some nice aged steaks or other specialty meat to a foodie friend across the country for a gift, but I had no idea which of the purveyors would deliver a quality product.  My first instinct was to check the internet for the best option.  After typing in “specialty meat online” into Google and pressing Enter, I admit I was completely overwhelmed by the search results.  More importantly, I realized that [...]