Cocktail Culture - New Haven CT Edition.

September 27th, 2017

On this week’s Podcast, our good friend Hazel Alvarado who works with me on the show, journeys to New Haven, CT to check out their cocktail culture and chats with Dan Rek, Beverage Director for Fork Hospitality and Tim Cabral,one of the owners of New Haven’s oldest Tavern - The Ordinary.

I told you last week that I heard from the fine people at Johnnie Walker.  They are releasing just 39,000 bottles of Johnnie Walker Black The Director’s Cut in conjunction with the release of the film Blade Runner 2049, starring Harrison FordThe film is directed by  Denis Villeneuve who collaborated with Master Blender Jim Beveridge to create this wonderful variation on Johnnie Walker Black.  It’s absolutely delicious.  Smokey like the original, but a little richer, rounder and even a bit fruitier.  Its 49% ABV as opposed to the 40% of the original.  Johnnie Walker Black is a great scotch...a classic, and I really enjoy this riff on it.

It comes in a really interesting futuristic bottle.

The original Blade Runner Movie was based on the book by Philip K. Dick called:

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? So we’ll use that amusing name for our Cocktail of the Week!

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

  • 1 ½ oz Johnnie Walker Black Label The Director’s Cut, (or substitute Johnnie Walker Black Label)
  • ½ oz Barrow’s Intense Ginger Liqueur
  • ½ oz Grilled Pineapple Juice (Juice from slices of Pineapple that have been grilled on each side for 3 mintues.)
  • ½ oz Fresh Lemon Juice
  • ½ oz Honey Syrup (1:1)
  • 1 Dash Fee Brothers Molasses Bitters (or substitute Angostura Aromatic Bitters).
  • Freshly Ground Nutmeg

Shake all ingredients except Nutmeg with ice.  Double strain into an Old Fashioned glass with one large ice cube.  Grate a small amount of Nutmeg on top.  Garnish with a wedge of grilled Pineapple, preferably skewered on a Hip-Stirrer Metal Robot Swizzle Cocktail Stirrer.


Industry news from Bar Institute:

“This unrelenting hurricane season has already caused unspeakable damage from Texas to the Caribbean. And, as our dear friends in Puerto Rico prepare for another very serious storm in Hurricane Maria, we have made the choice to postpone Bar Institute San Juan in the interest of everyone's safety and out of respect for the limited resources (including power, water and food) that are now available on the island. 

The new dates are 1/29-1/31 2018”.


Oct 23-25 – Portland, OR

Nov 13-16 – New York, NY

Jan 29-31 – San Juan, PR


We have posted last week on about NY area industry events for hurricane relief. Look for the link under the show notes on the site for this episode.  If you are doing something too and would like to let us know about what your bar is doing to help, let us know on the contact page.


I think as a Bartender (or even an enthusiast who throws a lot of cocktail parties), being a great conversationalist is a great skill to have.  You need to have lots of stuff to talk about – knowing a little about a lot can help your conversation skills.    Podcasts are a great way to learn stuff – and you listen to podcasts!  I know that for a fact because you can hear me talking right now!

So I thought we’d try out a new segment called Unrealted Podcast Suggestion of the Week.


We’ll do a podcast suggestion that has nothing to do with Bartending, cocktails or spirits.

And since you listen to podcasts and most likely do a lot of that listening on headphones, our Unrealted Podcast Suggestion of the Week is brought to you by a great headphone company called Sudio.  They make great quality wireless Bluetooth headphones, which btw, if you are still using headphones that you physically have to plug into your phone you are nuts!  


These Sudio headphones sound great!  It’s a shame that over the last couple of decades we’ve been increasingly sacrificing sound quality for convenience. Sudio also has a wireless earbud style model.  And if you use my coupon code BARTENDERJOURNEY you can get 15% off any model.  Go to and make sure you use coupon code BARTENDERJOURNEY for 15% off and to show your support for Bartender Journey!


So our Unrealted Podcast Suggestion of the Week is Showcase from Radiotopia, a new podcast from Radiotopia featuring original series from emerging and leading radio producers around the world. The current series, Ways of Hearing, is a six-part series about listening in the digital age from acclaimed musician Damon Krukowski. It’s a really interesting and podcast about the transition from analog to digital. It’s a fascinating discussion and expertly produced and I hope you’ll enjoy it.  It’s a limited run series and all 6 episodes.  If you have a suggestion for Unrealted Podcast Suggestion of the Week I’d really love to hear it!  Send me an email at with “podcast suggestion” in the subject line.


Oh hey!  I was a guest on another podcast.  As you may know, I bartend at a Private Club.  I was recently featured on the podcast called Private Club Radio.  If you are interested in hearing me on another podcast, or if you happen to work in a Private Club, check out Private Club Radio.  We’ll have a link to my episode in the show notes on


If you are a Bar or Restaurant owner, this week on our resource page, we have a link to a couple articles about insurance.  Not the “sexiest” of topics, but definitely an important and necessary one. Learn about General Liability Insurance, Business Property Insurance and Workers Comp from Embroker Insurance.


We’ve also included the Northeast contact information for additional questions.

And here’s some legalese: The article posted is not an endorsement and is for information only; rules may vary by jurisdiction.


Oh boy, here we go again with TOTC drama.  If you remember, back in March 2017 there was a huge uproar in the Cocktail community about a picture Ann Tuennerman, founder of TOTC posted.  She repeated an insensitive remark made by her husband Paul Tuennerman, and in the photo, Ann was wearing blackface.  It’s an old Marti Gras tradition and I won’t get into the details, but I covered all this very thoroughly back in episode #203.  I’ll have a link with the show notes or search back in the feed for the episode called Diversity Awareness (& Some Turmoil) in the Cocktail World       


Shortly after all this happened, Paul stepped down from his position at TOTC. Tales formed a Diversity Council. Which according to their web site:  “This Council composed of professionals from across the industry and outside of the industry, will work towards implementing progressive initiatives and monitoring their progress over time. This process will be completely transparent, and each initiative will be documented and made viewable to the public”.   Paul didn’t attend Tales this year as far as I could tell and the 15th TOTC was awesome as always.  It was feeling like the healing was beginning.


Then last week, 9/22/17 the website Neat Pour broke the story that Paul would be returning to the organization.  Ann announced this to the Diversity Council in an email.  The Council was not consulted at all and in fact Diversity Council Co-chair Colin Asare-appiah publicly resigned his post immediately.   There was uproar and lots of posts on FB.  People were pissed off again.


Our friend Jackie Summers, member of USBG NY and proprietor of Sorel Artisinal Liqueur sits on the Diversity Council.   He posted a very detailed note late friday night/ saturday morning that begins “Time for some facts.  Hopefully this will add some clarity”.  I won’d read the entire post but it is clear that Paul’s reinstatement, just 7 months after the original incident was very disturbing to the Diversity Council as well as the community as a whole.   Later in Jackie’s post he says “While I consider whether or not to continue my own future involvement, my concern is that this sequence of actions may prove more divisive than the incident itself.”


 As I said, all this happened on Friday.


One day later, on Saturday evening  9/23/17 the following email


Tales of the Cocktail Co-Founders Step Down


“Co-Founders, Ann and Paul Tuennerman, will be transitioning away from their roles in producing the world’s renowned cocktail event, Tales of the Cocktail, effective immediately.


Melissa Young, who has served as Director of Operations for the past nine years will assume the reigns of the operating company behind the event, MOJO911, LLC, as President.”


The press release goes on with a quote from Ann:


"We have devoted our professional careers to the hospitality industry even before the formation of Tales of the Cocktail and the New Orleans Culinary and Cultural Preservation Society).  Our goal has always been to create something lasting that can benefit the industry and the people of New Orleans well beyond our years. This allows that to continue," said Ann R. Tuennerman.)


There is another quote from Paul, but no mention of the controversy or the timing of this decision.


“It has been an honor to spend the last fifteen years working within the industry to create something extraordinary. I am fortunate in that I have had the opportunity to work alongside some amazing bartenders, spirit producers, authors, and educators, from around the globe. While Ann and I have mixed emotions, we are excited about the next chapter in our lives, and look forward to watching the event continue to evolve and flourish,” said Paul G. Tuennerman.

So congrats and best of luck to Melissa Young.  She’s a super nice and smart lady and it will be very interesting to see what the future brings for TOTC as the baton is passed to the next generation!


Toast of the Week:

May we get what we want,

May we get what we need,

But may we never get what we deserve.


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