Books Inc. in Alameda store manager Nick Petrulakis has been known to mix a cocktail now and then.  In this monthly feature, Nick creates a cocktail to go with one of his favorite books for the month.

Drinks_with_Nick's blog

Painted Horse #2

When I asked my wife, Karen, what color she’d paint a horse, she didn’t hesitate. “Red,” she said, “of course.” Perfect, I thought, because when Catherine, in Malcolm Brooks’ masterful Painted Horses, meets her first mare in Montana, she thinks she’s stumbled upon the ghost of a war pony, its stamping legs painted with bands of red and yellow. With that image in mind, I crafted my own Painted Horse. Like a mustang, it’s small, but packs a kick.

Painted Horse #2
Grenadine
Kahlúa
Baileys Irish Cream
Rye

Float carefully, in the order given, by pouring each over the back of a bar spoon into a chilled pony glass. Enjoy!  

 

Jack & Lydia

Jack & Lydia
5 oz. Tsingtao beer
1 oz. Galliano
2 shakes Bar Keep Chinese bitters
Stir all gently with ice. 
Strain into an ice-filled Collins glass.

Summer is everywhere, so our cocktail is a thirst quencher in honor of Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng. 

Complications arise in her novel when a young, blonde college student marries her Chinese American professor – in 1958. 

While there aren’t many Chinese cocktail ingredients available in the states, Tsingtao beer is one – and beer cocktails this time of year go down easy.

Dirty Shame


 

 

 

 

This month’s cocktail inspiration is Fourth of July Creek  by Smith Henderson.  Named after the first of many bars in Smith Henderson’s Fourth of July Creek, the Dirty Shame takes its cue from the Dirty Martini’s call for olive juice, but I went with bourbon, not gin, because that’s what soaks the novel’s pages.  I wish I could've utilized the whiskey Henderson cites – Redeye – but that’s unavailable, so use Montana’s own RoughStock to evoke this fierce novel’s terroir.

Dirty Shame:
2 oz. RoughStock Montana Whiskey
.25  - .5 oz. olive juice (make it as dirty as you want)
.25 oz. simple syrup
1 full dropper Bittermens Hellfire bitters
Olives
Shake all – except olives – with ice and strain into an ice-filled old-fashioned glass.  Garnish with olives
(mine are jalapeno stuffed, but any will do).

Sea of Flames

Books Inc. in Alameda store manager Nick Petrulakis has been known to mix a cocktail now and then.  In this monthly feature, Nick creates a cocktail to go with one of his favorite books for the month.

This month’s featured book and cocktail inspiration is All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr.  Ten years in the writing, "All the Light We Cannot See" is a magnificent, deeply moving novel from a writer "whose sentences never fail to thrill" ("Los Angeles Times").
Sea of Flames

1.5 oz. Hendrick's Gin
1 oz. Byrrh
.5 oz. St. Germain
2 tsp lemon juice
2 dashes The Bitter Truth Jerry Thomas' Bitters
Stir all with ice. Strain into chilled glass.
 

“This one came together nicely - and I know I'm not supposed to say that about my own concoctions, but there it is! The Byrrh is a really lovely, red-wine based aperitif that was created in France well before WWII (the setting of the novel). The St. Germain is also French. The other story line begins in Germany, so I added the Bitter Truth bitters - a German product.” Enjoy!

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