Tropical Storm

The Tropical Storm is a light green drink, served with ice in a short glass, and garnished with a dried banana.

History This cocktail has some historical significance, folks, since it riffs on some Hurricanes that my cousin Brian made about 10 years ago on Cape Cod during a family reunion. As sometimes happens in the summer, we were visited not only by family from California, Chicago and New York, but also by an actual hurricane….

The Cal Raleigh

The Cal Raleigh is a Southern Comfort drink that is best drunk outside on a summery baseball day.

One of my friends from junior high and high school (the accomplished author Mark A. Henry), knowing my love of baseball, texted me to say that his cousin’s son plays baseball for our local minor league team, The Tacoma Rainiers, and would I like to go to a game sometime? Yes, please!!! His cousin’s name…

End Times

The End Times is served in a lowball glass, with ice and a cherry garnish.

The End Times is a variation on a Manhattan (generally, that’s a whiskey, sugar, and bitters). I’m sorry to say that it didn’t work, but pleased to report that it depleted two bottles from the liquor cabinet! (They were nip bottles – Wild Turkey and Jim Beam – but still!!!) I used all the ingredients…

Look What You Made Me Do

Look What You Made Me Do is an amalgam of liquors and ingredients, served in a jelly glass.

Rosso Vermouth as Nemesis Folks, I’ve already discussed my struggles with Rosso Vermouth. You know that it is my personal cocktail nemesis. You can read about some of my travails with Rosso Vermouth here and here and especially here. Back into Battle Later the same evening as Rosso Vermouth and I duked it out over…


The Nocciano is made with the Italian liqueur called nocino, and has a hazelnut flavor, as well as a strawberry rim.

Nocciano, Italy This was a very exciting cocktail for me because I used a homemade liqueur which I first tasted in Italy. Some years back, I spent the summers teaching drawing and painting in Italy. I spent my first summer in a village called Nocciano (pronounced No-CHAH-no). It’s located on a steep hilltop not too…

Wild Blackberry Mocktail

The Wild Blackberry is a mocktail, featuring homemade tonic, bitters, and handpicked berries as a garnish.

This Happy Hour is notable because it’s the first time Maura met Elizabeth’s sister and her husband! Maura drank a mocktail because she had to go back to work, while Elizabeth sipped a glass of white wine. This drink is handcrafted, if there ever was one! Not only is it created with Elizabeth’s homemade tonic,…


A Tipperary cocktail with the light shining through the dark Irish whiskey.

I’m really sorry to say, this but this is one of the few cocktails that was immediately and irrevocably awful. Looking at my notes, I see that I wrote “ugh don’t do it” and if I had invented it myself, that’s what I’d have named it: the “Ugh, Don’t Do It”. It made me feel…