Saturday, April 2, 2011


I have received several emails lately chatising me for not posting up enough tasting notes on this blog. People want recommendations on what to drink or not to drink, apparently. I try to tell folks that I am unemployed now, and that not too many bottles come my way right now, but they don't want to hear about it. Notes, they say, they want notes. Well, okay. I am a go-along-to-get-along type of guy. Here goes.

Cafe Latte at Abraco (East Village, Manhattan): I was surprised and a bit disturbed to see this served to me in a tall glass, as opposed to a coffee cup. I don't remember it being offered that way in the past. But I have to tell you, this new format is tops for this offering. Perfectly creamy, smooth, and integrated, this was a masterwork, and I think a new level of quality has been reached by this already top producer. Kudos!

Adrien Camut 12yr Calvados in an already used plastic water bottle: Recently, I needed to take a bit of Calvados to go. Had to. So I grabed an empty water bottle from my breakfast table and poured in a little Calvados to take with. And let me tell you: terrible idea. If tasting out of plastic does this to the taste of high quality Calvados, what does it do to the taste of water? Have I been basically premoxing my water supply by purchasing the bottled kind all these years? Sad.

Iced Coffee at Momofuku Milk Bar (East Village, Manhattan): Few people, if anyone, has ever tasted this super rare, super limited release. I may be the only person on earth who has been priviledged enough to try this, in fact. Super high quality Stumptown Coffee served over large, Cold Draft ice cubes served in a plastic cup. Why have so few people ever experienced this true rarity? Because if you ask for iced coffee at Momofuku Milk Bar (East Village), they will tell you that they don't have it. That's right. This is an off-the-menu item, only available to a very few, very special insiders!! Momo Milk Bar does have coffee, mind you. There is a thermos of Stumptown available during normal business hours, and it is self serve. But there is no ice for the masses. That's right. If you ask for an iced coffee at this justly lauded, high end cake shop, you will be told that they don't have ice. No ice. They are attached to a restaurant that serves cocktails, but there is no ice. Nowhere. Nuh-uh. Nada. Couldn't be. So how does one obtain this mythic beverage? How does one go about layering in the coolness at this hip venue? Here was my method: I went to Milk Bar, purchased a coffee, and received a plastic cup. Then I cheated fate by not pouring my coffee yet. ZING!! Instead, I had a rib sandwich over at Ssam Bar, which is next door and attached to Milk Bar by hallways. Tasty sandwich. My precious plastic cup nearby, I made my move. "Hey, Bro" I said to the bartender, "what is the chance I could have a little ice? Just a little ice here in this plastic cup?" And you know what? I got my ice. Big Cold Draft cubes, right there in my cup. Which I proceeded to go fill with coffee back over at Milk Bar. This might not always work. You might want to pay it forward with a smile to the service staff and friendly demeanor beforehand. That kind of thing generally doesn't work for me, but you might try it anyway. Or you could just go to any other venue in the world and simply order an iced coffee. That might also work.

Well, that pretty much sums up the tasting notes for this past week. I'll be sure to post up another one of these lists real soon.

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