I know I'm in a vanishing minority, but I still believe in blogging, and especially cocktail blogging. When I started my own blog eight years ago, I used it to report on cocktail trends, share recipes, talk about bartenders and techniques and ingredients, and—most importantly—connect with other people who had the same passion for cocktails that I have. Though there are many other venues now in which to share these stories, I still think blogs have a place for the kinds of longer-form writing that you won't usually see on Facebook or even Tumblr.
Six months ago, I highlighted some of the newer cocktail blogs on the scene, but today I have a few more new and/or under-the-radar blogs to recommend.
Sass & Gin
I'm opening with Sass & Gin because I love the name. Started by Laura Cloer, a Southern transplant who works in the restaurant trade, Sass & Gin chronicles her experiments with home cocktail aging, menu-planning for cocktail parties, and the revolving cocktail menu at the restaurant where she works. Her blog is a mix of the professional and personal, which you still don't see all that often. She discusses cocktail trends, explores classic recipes, and talks about managing the cocktail program in a busy restaurant in a small Tennessee city. Cocktail writing so often seems to focus on one coast or the other, so a voice from the South is a welcome change of pace.
If you're wondering how to use some of the newer and weirder cocktail ingredients you can find these days, turn to bartender Gabriella Mlynarczyk, the voice behind Loving Cup, which has been around a few years now but is definitely worth giving another look. Mlynarczyk shares drink recipes using everything from jasmine tea and olive oil to Kummel and kombucha to salt solutions. The site features great photographs from Patrick O'Brien-Smith.
Home Speakeasy is the work of a couple, Jen and Jon, who keep a blog for the simple purpose of journaling every cocktail they create, to keep a record of what works and what doesn't. Great idea. Some of the best cocktail-blog posts I've seen have discussed why a particular drink just didn't taste very good. Sometimes it's because the flavors are unbalanced, sometimes it's because the recipe is quite old and skews a little sweeter, and sometimes it's because the ingredients just don't work well together. Home Speakeasy recounts their adventures with homemade bitters, tinctures, syrups, and shrubs; and now they're broadening their blog to include wines and sippin' whiskeys.
One Martini is run by Jessica Torres and Carri Brown. Torres and Brown offer recipes for both classic and modern cocktails, so they branch out beyond the sort of Jerry Thomas navel-gazing that some earlier bloggers (uh, like me) were guilty of. Some of the recipes are for sweet, desserty drinks: if you need a s'mores martini, this is the place to turn. The site features sharp, colorful photography and a crisp, engaging writing style. They include detailed tutorials for infusions and other homemade cocktail ingredients, plus reviews of books and spirits.
A Bar Above
Got room in your bookmarks for one more? A Bar Above is a little different from the rest: bartender and bar consultant Chris Tunstall is mostly writing for other bartenders, to help them learn to design new cocktails and make ingredients for the professional bar. Recent posts feature tips on making shrubs, how to make specialty sodas, how to clarify citrus, and how to price a cocktail so that the bar makes money but the customer doesn't feel cheated. Tunstall's blog features a lot of video content, but every post also has a summary of the video, so there's no need to watch the video if you're in a hurry (or you're at work). If you're a professional bartender, or if you're a dedicated amateur who wants advice from a pro, this is the blog for you.
So, what cocktail blogs are you reading right now?