Welcome to Imbibe Magazine's between-issues look at liquid culture with drink recipes, news and more. From coffee to cocktails, Imbibe celebrates your world in a glass.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Drink Locally

Saturday is my favorite day. Not only because it's the weekend, but also because it's Farmers Market Day—where chatting with the growers who hand-picked the berries I buy is almost as sweet as the fruit itself. The economic and environmental benefits of eating locally from family-run farms are endless, but have you ever given much thought to whether you're drinking locally?

My husband Ben and I recently made a day of imbibing in Hood River, 65 miles outside of Portland. We started at a picturesque winery, then enjoyed some local brews (made with locally grown hops), then stopped by a cozy neighborhood coffee shop for a latte made from coffee roasted in Portland. (Unless you live in a coffee-growing region, coffee travels a long way to our cups, but small roasters and retailers are big on paying fair prices that offer opportunity to coffee growers around the world.)

Chances are, wherever you live, you're within an hour of a brewer, winery, distiller or coffee roaster who'd love to share their stories and drinks with you. Get out there and see what's in your neck of the woods—it's a great way to discover and support local food and drink artisans. Then share your favorite locally-inspired sips & stories! — Siobhan Crosby

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Pinot Days

On July 1, Pinot Days will roll out its 3rd Annual Grand Festival showcasing more than 150 pinot noir producers from around the world. This is one of our favorite wine events. It's in a great location (San Francisco's Fort Mason), it draws a fun crowd, and it offers a well-rounded cross-section of top-notch pinots. Additional tasting events begin on June 29, but they're already sold out, so be sure to get your last-minute tickets for the grand tasting on Sunday. Tickets are $50.

Sunday, July 1, 1–5 p.m.
Festival Pavilion, Fort Mason, San Francisco

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Hanging Loose with Chartreuse

Inspired by our story on classic cocktail ingredients and liqueurs coming up in the July/August issue (subscribers, start stalking your mail carrier this week), I brought a bottle of Chartreuse Green to a friend’s barbeque. A sweet, earthy, warming liqueur may not seem like an obvious choice for a casual summer party, but we used it to create a light, thirst-quenching cocktail perfect for a hot day. Mixed with fresh lime juice, simple syrup, fresh mint and club soda, the Chartreuse was less priests-in-a-crypt and more blooming-summer-garden. Look for our liqueurs round-up on page 34 of the new issue. —Shoshanna Cohen

Garden Party
This recipe is for 4 servings. (For a party I like to mix enough to pour a few drinks at once; if you want to make one serving, just divide the ratios by 4.)

6 oz. Chartreuse Green
1 oz. simple syrup
2 oz. fresh-squeezed lime juice (about 2 limes)
15-20 fresh mint leaves
10 oz. club soda
Ice cubes

Tools: muddler or long-handled spoon, cocktail shaker
Glass: highball
Garnish: mint sprig, paper umbrella

Muddle first four ingredients in a cocktail shaker. Shake with ice. Pour into ice-filled glasses (don't strain). Top with club soda. Garnish.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Hop Leaf

While visiting family in Chicago last weekend, I was introduced by my beer-fanatic uncle to Hop Leaf, a Belgian-influenced bar and restaurant with a mind-boggling array of suds and a respectable kitchen. In addition to the wide assortment of Belgians, Hop Leaf features Belgian-style domestics from a bevy of microbrews, like regionals Two Brothers and Goose Island. But if intense, high-alcohol beers aren’t your thing, there are pages of other choices in the encyclopedic menu. The beer list has extensive tasting notes, too, which makes trying something adventurous less of a gamble. Zaydeh (that’s Yiddish for grandpa) tried the Clausthaler, a non-alcoholic German, and I had a peach lambic. The dinner menu is also vaguely Belgian-inspired and includes mussels and frites, one of my absolute favorite things to eat with beer. The back dining room, where we ate, is good for family dinners (no kids allowed, though), while the front area has more of a pub-like atmosphere, fun for nights out with friends. (5148 N. Clark St., 773-334-9851) —Shoshanna Cohen