Today was a good day. Specifically, it was a good booze day. First, I spent a couple hours reading about booze. Then I spent a couple of hours mixing and drinking booze. After that, a couple hours looking at and buying booze. A couple more hours of drinking booze. Now a couple hours writing about booze. That's my kind of day.
Some of the reading time was, as always, spent reading, analyzing and sometimes mocking and correcting drink recipes under my breath. Most of the reading time, however, was spent with a fantastic little book by Ron Givens entitled Bourbon at its Best: The Lore and Allure of America's Finest Spirits. While it's certainly not perfect (for example, the author (or editor) seems to have difficulty with "(variable)teenth" century nomenclature), it is by far, one of the best books about booze I've ever run across. I suspect that it may even be the best book ever written on bourbon. Basically, it's something to check out if you get the opportunity.
The mixing and drinking involved tinkering with a delightful beverage, The White Lady. For those of you not in the know, that would be concoction of gin, lemon juice, and triple sec (I used Cointreau). Yet another way to enlighten those who "don't like anything with gin." Shake and strain into a cocktail glass: 1.5 oz gin, 1.0 oz Cointreau, 0.5 oz freshly squeezed lemon juice. For those who are already big fans of gin, feel free to bump up the gin -- a little. Anything more than 2 ounces and the orange and lemon become little more than additional botanicals for the gin.
The shopping was quite fruitful, more so than usual. I actually ended up buying three bottles. I picked up a cava, an asti, and a California cuvee. Okay, so it's not the most diverse bag of booze bottles to bring home, but as far as sparkling wines go, there's a significant amount of variation. Most of the liquors and liqueurs I want are on my birthday wishlist (July 2; send nice booze), and my inventory of beer has nowhere to grow, so I guess it was inevitable that I would end up bringing home some kind of wine. I'd also recently run out of sparkling wine, as I'm currently working on developing a bubbly way of guzzling St. Germain with delicious appleness. With my new stock of sparkling wines, it should be perfected shortly, so keep your eyes open.