Navy Strength Gin, Sipped in the Shanty (aka a Visit to The New York Distilling Co. in Williamsburg)

Readers might recall the piece we did two summers ago on the fledging distillery boom in our borough. (It was called “The Whiskey Rebellion.”) Flash-forward two years and we’ve actually lost count of the number of small-batch, craft-liquor producers that are creating vodka, whiskey, and gin right under our noses, but only one, as far as we know, has it’s very own bar. We highlighted both the distillery and The Shanty in our current NY1 segment, so be sure to watch to learn more about the two unique gins they now have on the market.

Been Wondering What to Make with Bittermens Orange Cream Citrate? This Drink’s the Answer

Here’s recipe three from the five cocktails that made it through the preliminary round of judging for our Great King Street Cocktail Competition; we asked local professional mixologists to submit seasonal recipes made with the new Compass Box Scotch blend, which is designed for mixing. This is the Artist’s Commission, from Aaron Cotler over at The Crown Inn, a brand new cocktail/beer/wine bar on Franklin Street in Crown Heights.

Smoked Rosemary and Two Kinds of Scotch: The Charlie Hustle Cocktail from Fort Defiance

This drink is pretty impressive: The Charlie Hustle from Abigail Gullo, who tends at Fort Defiance in Red Hook. “With smokey peat and rosemary,” Gullo wrote to the judges, “it only seemed appropriate to name this after Pete Rose.” Gullo also lights a bit of fresh rosemary on fire, blows it out, and then holds the smoldering sprig inside the glass to give it a second dose of smoke. See, we told you it was impressive.

Why Joe Bastianich (yes, the Winemaker, Restaurateur, Author, Athlete) Wants you to Drink and Think SlowWine

Joe Bastianich has a new memoir, Restaurant Man, due in Spring, a multitude of thriving restaurants across New York, Los Angeles and Las Vegas, a hand in the market called Eataly, a few NewYork marathons and Ironman competitions under his svelte belt, and a winery, to name a few of his myriad projects. Despite his fast-paced schedule, our sister publication Edible Manhattan caught up with him recently to talk about the new SlowWineGuide hitting our shores this January–don’t miss the launch party and first stop on the national tour this January 30!–his penchant for Slow Food-approved winemaking (these days that’s called low-intervention) and why you should drink a bottle of wine a day. Slowly, of course.

U.K. Dispatch–In This Beer Loving Town, Brooklyn Can Hold its Own

LONDON–For years we’d thought of this city’s lovely old-fashioned taverns and tap rooms as the holy grail of good beer, thanks to the Campaign for Real Ale launched back in 1971, when most of us Brooklynites were still guzzling Bud in squat pop-top cans. Things looked to be headed in the same direction in the U.K. until the real ale movement, now called CAMRA, was founded by four drinkers concerned about the homogenization of both the beers they were drinking and the pubs where they were being served.