Monday, August 31, 2009

A Liquid Concerto in 4 parts

As I continue on my mission to spread the word of where to get a good cocktail with Nirvino, an online network for cocktail and wine enthusiasts, I share with you a quick recap of my latest cocktail tasting event.

This last Tuesday Nirvino Ambassadors got a real treat once again in Midtown for another Ambassador cocktail review. We had the pleasure this time to experience Rouge Tomate, a beautifully airy and fairly new restaurant thats received lots of buzz for addressing social and environmental issues and seeking out farmers who provide local and seasonal produce. They've developed innovative cooking techniques that ignite the natural flavors while heightening the nutritional value of each dish. Now you put that same philosophy into cocktails and your cocktail just isnt the same anymore.

We were set up in their lower level cocktail lounge StirRed where mixologist Rain Lampariello formerly of Lever House conducted a symphony of flavor and gave us some education on their cocktail philosophy.

We imbibed a 4 course cocktail tasting menu that included a mini Moscow Mule as a palette cleanser and led into the 3 main cocktails of the evening.

Heres what the Ambassadors had to say about them.

Annie S. takes a sip of the Electric Honeydew and gets a lil dreamy "Sweet and sumptuous honeydew melon gets an electric kick in infused gin form. A genius combination with mint tea and honey as the inspiration. Fresh and spiky and shockingly an icicle in August."

Josh B. goes far east and beyond with the Singapore Sling-"Malaysia with its strict Islamic liquor laws and gorgeous brothels make this drink a little mysterious. It was bold with cold blocks of ice and that helps in NY sweltering weather. My friend Liz had never been to to Asia but after one drink, when she hopped into the cab and yelled, Singaore, Buster!"...woah.

Dylan B. gets inspired by the Tequila Maria-"Drinking this is like picking vegetables from your own backyard garden that grows some of the best tomatoes, basil, and peppers. But rather than using those vegetables for a fresh caprese salad, mix their juices with tequila and you've now got your garden in a glass. Zesty, spicy, and fresh."

There you have it again folks. There's a story in every fine crafted cocktail and theres a place to talk about it.

What was your last great cocktail experience like and where did it take you?

As always, I invite you to sip and tell

for more info on Rouge Tomate:

At your service,

The Boulevardist

Monday, August 24, 2009

Mixing cocktails & Swimming in Dumpsters

*pics and excerpts taken from New York Times online Published: July 19, 2009

Last Friday I was invited to create cocktails for a secret pool party and swim in pools made out of dumpsters on the banks of the Gowanus Canal in industrial Brooklyn.For those who have either heard about or read about this infamous space you'd know that very few were able to experience this unique and somewhat magical space that was surrounded in urban decay.

*On a rented lot that’s hidden from the street they have erected what they call a lo-fi urban country club: three connected pools housed in Dumpsters; a boccie court; some lounge chairs, grills and cabanas.

*The idea, said David Belt, a real estate developer and the president of Macro-Sea, the company behind the pools, was not to create an exclusive party destination but to experiment with underused space and materials, repurposing them with urban renewal in mind.

The party was organized by Jonathan Schnapp, Tahir Hemphill, Chanel(not the brand), and Tristan of Tough Dumpling. Jonathan Schnapp who is a friend of David Belt was given an open invitation to throw a party in the space. He brought in bands, Djs, a 6' whale pinata,3 pork roasts for the grill and about 60 guests filled with good vibes.

The bands that played were The Faculty who dropped a a cool live Hip Hop session and Tamar Kali who put it down harder than most could pick up with her afropunk sound. The djs were Tough Dumpling, Radar, Workhorse, Jake, Virgil and Richard who all kept the ebb and flow of the dance floor on point.

As for them doing it again, they'd love to, but the pools are being deconstructed this Tuesday, so we've probably seen the last of the dumpster pools in this current incarnation.

I guess I can say I got a chance to swim in a dumpster as many of us first timers had the odd experience of sharing together.

Keep your ears and eyes open. Theres so many random events happening in New York, beneath the surface and around your corner.

To see the full NY Times article:

At your service,

The Boulevardist

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Ping Pong and Puma anyone?

After the epic badminton showdown at GOVERNORS ISLAND with TRETORN last month, RECESS is back this SATURDAY AUGUST 22ND at COLONELS ROW from 12PM - 5PM, this time with a SANDPAPER PADDLE TABLE TENNIS challenge with PUMA, the true originals in the ping pong explosion (as it is affectionately known). The game itself is currently going through a renaissance in the US but for the RECESS showdown, we've decided to put a little twist on the game, a sandpaper version that will even the playing field, and more co-ed friendly. While 32 various teams from the creative community battle their way to the finals, there will also be open public tables to test your skill at the sport, paddles provided. LEGAMIN and VAN LEEUWEN ICE CREAM trucks, as well as FUNCTION DRINKS are back for food and refreshments to keep everyone hydrated and well fed. We've even got mini tables, frisbees and kites to keep the young ones entertained. And while you're out on the island, take a spin on the highly coveted series of PUMA BIOMEGA BIKES and test ride them, we promise it's going to change the way you feel about urban transportation! The crew from NO ORDINARY MONKEY will be on the musical decks.

The free ferry leaves the BATTERY MARITIME BUILDING in Lower Manhattan at 11am and every half hour after that. So don't miss out on all the action!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Monkeys, Cocktails and Emotions

This past Tuesday marked another installment of the Nirvino Ambassador Cocktail Review. As we build our cocktail community here in NY we’re also venturing out of our box we call downtown in search for tasty drinks. Ambassadors and guests got to once again take part in creating the first online menu of all the best drinks New York has to offer. Beekman Bar and Books was the perfect spot for this stop for Bols Genever Cocktails. Known for its fine whiskies and cigars this libation pad also has a running theme of monkeys carved in wood and in artwork all throughout the space. Perfect.

Mixologist, Ben Scorah of Beekman Bar and Books created the tasty cocktails for the evening, including the Holland Razorblade which is currently on their menu. As we opened the Nirvino gates for on-site reviews it was also the other cocktails on the menu, the Dutch Blood and Sand and the Green Apple Infused Old Fashioned that equally captured the palettes and emotions of some of our Ambassadors. Might we have another potential Bols Genever cocktail for the menu?? Heres what they had to say.

Matthew L. calls the Dutch Blood & Sand "an explosion of flavor.This is one pinkish colored drink that I will display proudly as I enjoy it!"

Nicole T. says the Holland Razorblade is: "Like biting into a citrus fruit while looking out the window through a sheer curtain at the end of summer . . . Light, refreshing, and sexy. And before the sipping experience even began, I was dazzled by the constellation of cayenne pepper sprinkled on the surface."

And Selena R. says "This one's all about the baked apple bitters, giving the sophisticated Bols a warm autumn punch. Is it fall yet?" referencing the Green Apple Infused Old Fashioned

Folks as you see, a cocktail is not just a drink. It’s also a gateway to fantastic imagery and sensation all contained in a pretty little glass.

So as we continue our quest for Nirvino, I invite you to Sip and Tell.

for more info on the Bols Genever and Beekman Bar and Books:

At your service,
The Boulevardist

Friday, August 7, 2009

Respect...the sound

The legendary Michael Rose of Black Uhuru took us deep into the sound and we were gettin natty down last night at the Independent in San Francisco. Pull out your Black Uhuru CD's and tapes. This is how a sexy summer is supposed to sound.

At your service mon,

The Boulevardist