Happy Hour: The Stinger



With its refreshing mint flavor from the white crème de menthe and the silky taste of Cognac, the Stinger was originally introduced as a nightcap and popularized in movies through the 1940s and 1950s. James Beard also featured the cocktail recipe in his revised edition of Hors d’Oeuvre and Canapés. We think it’s time to get retro and reintroduce this drink as part of your end-of-the-night routine—or even an after-work treat. Get the recipe here.

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Happy Hour: White Satin


If your cocktail parties tend to grow from an intimate gathering to a boisterous crowd, it’s essential to have a large-format recipe on hand that can easily serve a group. In 1940, James Beard described the White Satin as “a great Prohibition cocktail” in his first book, Hors d’Oeuvre and Canapés. The crowd-pleasing libation blends gin and grapefruit juice in equal measure, so filling a punchbowl is just as easy as mixing one drink. Get the recipe here.

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Happy Hour: James Beard’s Jack Rose


Don’t be deterred by the delicate pink hue of a Jack Rose cocktail; this is no Cosmopolitan. Made with a spirit that predates America, this libation is better suited for devoted history buffs than Sex and the City fans. In the Colonial Era, applejack was a concentrated apple cider, but now it denotes an apple brandy blend. The most prominent distiller of the spirit, Laird & Company, was also the first commercial distillery in the new country, having gotten its license in 1780. 


This cocktail peaked in popularity during the Roaring Twenties, but that’s no reason to let it languish—mix it up a few for friends this weekend and impress them with a bit of history. Get the recipe right here.

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Happy Hour: James Beard’s Favorite Bloody Mary


Friday afternoon means it’s almost time for brunch, which many here at JBF consider the most important meal of the week. And what's a good brunch without a Bloody Mary? Some restaurants seem to put the emphasis on the garnish, piling on the pickles, sausage, and shrimp until the cocktail becomes almost an afterthought. Like many of James Beard’s cocktail recipes, his Bloody Mary is stripped of unnecessary flourishes to focus on the ingredients. With a third less tomato juice and a bit more lemon juice, this iteration will be brighter and crisper, perfect to perk you up on a groggy weekend morning. 


Get the recipe here.

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Happy Hour: Less-Traveled Wine Regions for Your Bucket List


Indulge your Friday afternoon wanderlust with these oenophile-centric travel tips from Andy Chabot, food and beverage director at the Barn at Blackberry Farm, which took home our 2014 JBF Award for Outstanding Wine Program. Here, Chabot shares his favorite less-traveled wine regions for incredible tasting journeys without the pesky crowds.



Paso Robles, California
I imagine that Paso Robles is what Napa was like in the ’70s: farm country, plenty of incredible wines, and friendly winemakers who open their doors to visitors. A nice bonus is that local restaurants sell many of the area’s hard-to-find wines.


Chablis, France 
A quick trip from Paris, this is a fantastic region for white-wine lovers. It’s not... Read more >

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Happy Hour: James Beard's Old Fashioned

Old Fashioned


After a long workweek, it’s time to kick back with a simple and satisfying cocktail that uses items commonly found in a home bar. James Beard himself crafted an Old Fashioned recipe that takes the drink down to its essential ingredients. In his own words, “This is my own version of the Old Fashioned, for I loathe ‘fruit salad’ in a drink and all the decorations that usually accompany this simple cocktail.” So drop the cherry, forget the orange wedge, and whip up this timeless drink. Get the recipe here.


Alyssa Haak is a New York City–based writer and editor. Find her on Twitter and Instagram.

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Happy Hour: Negroni Bianco

negroni bianco


Gabe and Katherine Thompson’s intimate restaurants offer discerning New York City diners soulful Italian cuisine with a modern spin. For this week's Happy Hour column, we tapped their talented partner and beverage director, Joe Campanale, for one of his delectable cocktail recipes. Behold, the negroni bianco. "The negroni is my favorite cocktail, and I like to have a version of it at each restaurant," explains Campanale. "As we were opening L'Apicio, I was tasting Cocchi Americano (a great Italian aperitivo that's clear in color) and it gave me the idea to create a white negroni." The traditional negroni is equal parts gin, red vermouth, and Campari with an orange twist—Campanale riffed on the cult... Read more >

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Happy Hour: Luca Mano Freddo


Gabe and Katherine Thompson’s intimate restaurants offer discerning New York City diners soulful Italian cuisine with a modern spin. For this week's Happy Hour column, we tapped their talented partner and beverage director, Joe Campanale, for one of his innovative cocktail recipes. This light, herbaceous libation shines with its bright notes from fresh mint, the refreshing flavor of muddled cucumbers, and the warm, slightly spicy complexity from Velvet Falernum, a sugarcane-derived syrup that contains hints of almond, ginger, cloves, and lime. The drink is featured in the trio's gorgeous new cookbook, Downtown Italian. But don't fret if you can't get your hands on a copy in time... Read more >

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Happy Hour: Small-Batch Wine


With so many high-volume, global brands on the market, it’s easy to understand the allure of artisanal wine. Traditional, old-world winemaking—small-batch, terroir-driven wines, with minimal interference by the vintner—can yield thrilling results. Production limitations often result in big price tags, but there are still plenty of good values to be found. We enlisted JBF Award winner Daniel Johnnes, wine director at Daniel Boulud’s restaurants, to do the digging for you. 


Château Jean-Pierre Gaussen Bandol 2008 ($28)
Septuagenarian Jean-Pierre Gaussen does practically everything himself at his ultra-traditional estate in Bandol, a Provençal... Read more >

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Happy Hour: Cardamom Old Fashioned

Cardamom Old Fashioned


A subtle riff on the classic Old Fashioned, this version—a staple of senior editor Elena North-Kelly’s cocktail repertoire—uses maple syrup in lieu of standard sugar, while handmade cardamom bitters step in for the more traditional Angostura variety, creating a warm, fragrant antidote to late-winter doldrums. Get the recipe here. 


Elena North-Kelly is senior editor at the James Beard Foundation. Find her on Twitter and Instagram.

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