OF COURSE WE WANT you and your friends to drink responsibly. But once you’ve got that nailed, consider the following drink assists you may not even know you needed.
Shakoozie; Beer cozies for the shower. How come we had to wait till 2011 for this one? After all how many times have you had to precariously balance your brew on a soap dish while you scrubbed down with Axe bodywash, only to have it spill or fill with shower water? The two-part system consists of an adhesive vinyl “launchpad” and the velcro-enabled foam ShaKoozie. A special shout-out to our friends at Thrillist for spotting this one. $10 Shakoozie.com
Tervis Shaker Top: You have the super-cool, personalized Tervis plastic glass that keeps drinks ice cold (or piping hot) while you travel. Now this handy three-part topper turns that same 16-oz cup into a go-anywhere cocktail shaker (works with protein shakes too for wet blankets). The company also sells cocktail recipe wraparounds, so you can make the perfect mojito without your iPhone cocktail app. Dishwasher safe and far more packable than that vintage cocktail kit you picked up at a yard sale. $8 Tervis.com
PDT Cocktail Book: James Meehan, owner of New York City’s Please Don’t Tell (PDT) speakeasy-style craft cocktail bar, has released what he calls “my dream cocktail manual.” Illustrated with stylized cartoons by artist Chris Gall, the book mimics 19th-century hardcore cocktail guides, with details on setting up a professional bar station, along with recipes for PDT’s raft of classic and innovative drinks (attributed to historic or contemporary sources as appropriate). Everything from a real daiquiri to Meehan originals like (our current winter-time fave) Beer and a Smoke (Sombra Mezcal, lime juice, celery bitters, hot sauce and pilsner). $25 barnsandnoble.com
CocktailsHD for iPad: There are a zillion cocktail apps out there. This is one of them. Trending towards wacky party drinks (B*tch on Wheels, anyone?) the MacWorld-lauded app and accompanying website does much more, covering wine, bar products, mocktails and hints and tips for the aspiring bartender. Tech aspects include the ability to slide between drinks and random search options. Related apps include Easy Recipes HD and Sommelier HD. $2.99 from iTunes. Cocktailshd.com
DIY Holiday Gift Advent Calendar: Chow.com has created an awesome page for Christmas (or Hannukah or Festivus: no reason to not celebrate each day of December!). Visit the page, click on a day and you’ll find links to great homemade gift ideas for foodies on your list. December first is DIY Amaretto with real almonds. The fourth guides you into making your own pickled cocktail onions. We can’t wait to open the window on the 24th! Free at Chow.com
Molecular Cocktails Starter Kit: Cocktails caught up to the “molecular” culinary trend a few years back, with people like Eben Freeman making gelled and deconstructed cocktails at (the now defunct) Tailor in New York City. With this kit, you’ll be making foamed Sidecars and jellied vodka Gimlets in no time. The kit includes various thickeners and stabilizers, a tool kit of measuring spoons and pipettes, and the instruction / cocktail recipe book. $80 ThinkGeek.com
Thirsty for more? Check out National Spirits Examiner or NY Drinks Examiner.
Do you have a cocktail trend, new product bar or teahouse you’d like me to review? Want to give me a heads-up on your favorite hot spot? Please email me at NYDrinksExaminer AT gmail.com. Or follow me on Twitter @roberthp.
FTC Disclaimer: The author sometimes receives product samples for review, which carry no cash value and cannot be re-sold, and sometimes attends press events such as lunches or cocktail parties, designed to promote a given product. The author is not paid by any alcohol manufacturer, retailer or distributor, or provided compensation apart from revenue from an assigning publishing company for editorial publication. Opinions are the author’s own. By the way, you should be 21 or older to read this page. Author received an advance copy of the PDT Cocktail book for review, but no other samples related to this article.