Nation’s Restaurant News has a great article about some of the fun seminars during this year’s Tales of the Cocktail, covering fun new ingredients and methods for making cocktails (including my H2O cocktails!). Check out the article here.
I’m shaking it up again — Season 2 of Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen™
I am so excited to have just completed shooting the second season of my cocktail show Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen with Small Screen Network! Keep your eye out for these tasty cocktail episodes, which air every Tuesday!
A sneak peek at my Envy cocktail!
If you’ve seen my recent tweets then you saw some of the inside scoop while in mid-filming. This season is full of great cocktail recipes from inspired classics to fun & inventive cocktails, including a DIY raspberry syrup that I use in a Clover Thyme Club as well as a Whole Fruit Strawberry Daiquiri and a Cherry Chocolate Bourbon Spirited Milkshake! To kick-off the first season, I invited world-renowned mixologist Charlotte Voisey to show us how to make her Port of Mischief Punch. Special episodes also include a fun trip to Eastern Washington and Oregon where I demystify the maraschino cherry and take you on a tour of how they’re made from orchard to jar. I hope you will tune in weekly for some Liquid Kitchen inspiration. Cheers!
If you’re a cocktail enthusiast, then check out these must-have new books! Food & Wine just published their Food & Wine: Cocktails 2011 and is available now. I penned the vodka chapter which is loaded with recipes from myself as well as guest mixologists Anu Apte from the Seattle’s Rob Roy and H. Joseph Ehrmann of San Francisco’s Elixir. Some of my faves for summer include my Tea’Thyme and Pineapple Pico cocktails.
Spirit Industry icon Gary Regan recently published his Annual Manual for Bartenders, 2011. After careful research and testing, “Gaz” picked his top 101 mixologists recipes! It’s an amazing book for any mixologist or budding bartender – I’m honored to have my Bollywood cocktail recipe included. If you love cocktails, make sure to sign up for Gaz’s Ardent Spirit newsletter – it’s one of my faves!
More Cocktails at the Manhattan Cocktail Classic
In May, I traveled to New York and imbibed with some of the best mixologists, bartenders and cocktail enthusiasts at the Manhattan Cocktail Classic! Along with famed mixologists Charlotte Voisey and Jamie Boudreau, we led an informative and interesting seminar called “Three Mixologists, Three Cocktails, Three Ways or Cocktail Menage a Trois!” We each took three classic cocktails and put our special spin to them. You can see a video of our demonstrations on Small Screen Network.
IACP—International Association of Culinary Professionals
This past June my Culinary Associate Heather Jones and I traveled south to Austin, Texas for this annual conference. This is a worldwide industry event inviting culinary experts from all areas (chefs, restaurateurs, photographers, etc.) to come together, attend seminars and dish out tasty offerings. This year I led a specialty seminar called “Better to be Bitter.” People loved the hands-on a tasting and learning just what bitters are as well as how to use them… it really is better to be bitter!
After a week of seminars by legends like Shirley Corriher (making her famous lighter-than-air biscuits and teaching us all about baking science) to some fine Texas cuisine demos by luminary Chef Stephan Pyles, it was time to check out Austin’s food trailers (trucks) with chef gal friends Danielle Custer and Lisa Dupar.
My new friend, a Texas Armadillo!
Lisa Dupar and Danielle Custer checking out the East Side King Food during our Austin food trailer foray!
The Local Yolk food trailer … so cute!
The temperature was HOT for these NW gals … but we trekked on to taste quite a few of the city’s best street grub.
Gourdough’s was my fave — and the naughtiest! Giant doughnuts topped with crazy and oh-so-tasty things! Funky Monkey: grilled bananas and cream cheese icing. Porkey’s: Canadian bacon, cream cheese & jalapeño jelly. Mother Clucker: fried chicken and honey butter. Yes, quite a gut bomb, but oh-so-good!
Gourdough’s BIG FAT DONUTS!
Other food venders ranged from Korean barbecue to fish and chips with curry sauce to killer Texas-style BBQ. I’m full just thinking about it!
Tales of the Cocktail
Tales of the Cocktail is probably the biggest of the cocktail events this year. Every July, mixologists, spirit producers and enthusiasts from all over the world convene for a week of amazing parties, liquor tastings, spirited dinners and seminars. This year I did a seminar with internationally renowned Modern Mixologist Tony Abou-Ganim on H2O Cocktails. We discussed the how’s and why’s of water–based cocktails using flavor–infused waters with complex–character vodka. Master Distiller Thomas Kuuttanen from Purity Vodka joined us to answer all those geeky questions that we couldn’t. TOTC is open to the public so you don’t need to be a pro to party with the professionals. Stay tuned for my next newsletter to hear all the imbibing details. In the meantime, check out an episode of Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen to see how to make a Purity Watermelon Habanero H2O Cocktail — so perfect for summer sippin’!
On-Air with Kathy Casey! Dishing with Kathy Casey on KOMO New Radio
I’m excited to announce that you can catch me on Seattle’s KOMO News Radio AM 1000/97.7 FM! Art Sanders will be Dishing it up with me every weekend. I’ll cover what’s hot in Seattle from seasonal treats (cherry mojitos, anyone?), new restaurants and festivals (check out this lavender lemon soda) to entertaining at home. Catch me throughout the day and evening every weekend on KOMO!
Buzzin’ Around Town
As the summer months take over, I’m happy to announce that my bees are back with the addition of another hive! That’s right, I have two hives now! The bees love zooming around our urban garden and deliciously feed off the wild fennel blossoms and blooming edibles. I can’t wait to taste this year’s batch of yummy honey. You too can have a taste for yourself and order yourself a jar of my special Liquid Kitchen 5130 Honey!
Don’t forget to check my column D’lish with DList Magazine, my posts on Amazon’s Al Dente blog and keep your eye out for my upcoming column in in the new Sip Northwest Magazine, where I’ll be covering the newest NW Spirits and Bars!
I’ll be headed out California soon for the Flavor Experience then off to Canada for the Canadian Club Whiskey distillery tour! Stay tuned with my tasty tweets.
Wishing you a wonderful and d’licious summer! – Kathy
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This week, I’m heading south to The Big Easy – it’s time for Tales of the Cocktail, a spirited gathering of cocktail enthusiasts and talented mixologists from around the world! What better place to hold an event like this than New Orleans, a city known for its party-town attitude and great foods and drinks and of course the birthplace of the cocktail as we know it.
Speaking of its libatious history, the French Quarter circa 1830 set the stage for apothecary Antoine Peychaud, a Creole immigrant, to create the famous Peychaud’s Bitters. Bitters had long been used for medicinal purposes, said to cure everything from indigestion to jaundice and “hysteria” in women, but Peychaud’s secret family recipe, mixed with brandy was the concoction he delighted his friends with after hours. As if he wasn’t making enough of a contribution to mixology as we know it, he served his guests from eggcups, known as ‘coquetiers’ (pronounced ko-ke-tays), which evolved into the word cocktail. Good thinking, Antoine.
The drink caught on, particularly at The Sazerac Coffeehouse where it earned its name, made the switch from brandy to rye and gained a dash of absinthe. The rest is history!
And speaking of bitters – a lot of people ask me what the heck to do with bitters. I consider them the salt and pepper of cocktails. When a drink just needs that little extra something, throw in a dash of bitters. They add complexity and depth of flavor … I can’t imagine that Sazerac without them!
So, wherever you might be this week, raise a glass with me to magical New Orleans, the Sazerac, and the pioneers of cocktail creation like Antoine Peychaud and all my friends at Tales of the Cocktail!
Makes 1 cocktail
1/4 oz Ricard or absinthe
2 oz rye
1/4 oz Simple Syrup
4 dashes Peychaud’s bitters
Garnish: Wide lemon disk
Rinse a chilled Old Fashioned glass with Ricard or absinthe; set aside. In a mixing glass, measure in the rye, syrup and bitters. Fill mixing glass 3/4 full with ice and stir swiftly for 20 seconds. Strain into liqueur-rinsed glass without ice. Squeeze lemon disk over top of drink then drop in.
It’s been another whirlwind of a few months … lots of tasty travel and exciting work as well as the addition of a new mixology associate Andrew Bohrer to the Liquid Kitchen! As a former bartender at Vessel and opening bar manager at the Naga Cocktail Lounge (both listed in Food & Wine’s top 100 bars in the world) as well as most recently the bar manager at Mistral Kitchen, Andrew created national cocktail buzz around his creative libations. We are thrilled to welcome Andrew to our mixology team! Check out his blog at Cask Strength.
Speaking of blogs … on my blog Dishing with Kathy Casey, we will have some new guest bloggers such as Cocktail Quests’ Courtney Randall, Liberty Bar co-owner Andrew Friedman and cake lover Josie Plath. We have new posts and recipes every week and we hope you visit often.
It seems I’ve barely been home for 2 seconds lately, so here is a glimpse of my spring adventures. I’ll be excited to report back mid-summer with new travels, tales and tasty recipes!
Tales of the Cocktail has moved into international territory and broken from its New Orleans roots this past March. Tales Vancouver was hosted at the beautiful Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel in British Columbia. Tales on Tour was set for a different, yet fun and refreshing change of pace. (Definitely not as many sun glasses worn at the early morning seminars!)
Mass cocktail swag from TOTC: Vancouver!!!!
The whole event kicked off with a Canadian Professional Bartenders Association (CPBA) Welcome Reception held at the Vancouver Aquarium. Master mixologist David Wolowidnyk of WEST Restaurant & Bar as well as Director & Treasure of the CPBA shook up and stirred lots of great drinks while demonstrating his mastery and finesse of the Japanese bartending techniques.
Mixologist David Wolowidnyk stirring a tasty concoction!
The rest of my time there was spent attending amazing seminars by such cocktail luminaries as tiki god Jeff “Beachbum” Berry. Jeff is a total tiki beverage historian. His CSI-style seminar took us through the various origins of the Mai Tai cocktail and helped us come to our own conclusions. Too fun!!!
Beachbum Berry holding up his book Sippin’ Safari!
I then geeked out with Dave Arnold at The Science of Cocktails: New Techniques Behind the Bar followed by an informative and fun seminar on The History and Importance of Ice in Cocktails by renowned mixologist Charlotte Voisey and Jon Santer.
It was definitely great to have Tales up in the Pacific Northwest- my neck of the woods. I can’t wait for Tales of the Cocktail this summer, July 20-24 in New Orleans, Louisiana where I will be presenting a seminar on H2O Cocktails with the Modern Mixologist Tony Abou-Ganim and master distiller Thomas Kuuttanen from Purity Vodka. Come shake some fun up with us and get your tickets soon!
In April I headed to the Mom 2.0 Summit Conference! This huge conference was held in beautiful New Orleans, Louisiana. (I sure seem to be spending a lot of time there!) My team and I were there with Almond Accents. We whipped up lunch for 400 people, passed out some delicious snacks and bites at the booth and met lots of great people. Check out my recipe for the Calypso Cous Cous Almond Salad with Shrimp that we made for the lunch.
“King Cocktail” Dale DeGroff was shaking it up at my Food Studios-Liquid Kitchen this past spring for a Cointreau event. He guided attendees through a spirited tasting of orange liquors and a sampling of Dale’s cocktails. Cointreau also announced the 2011 Mix-Off Competition where I get to be an expert mentor for the finals at Tales of the Cocktail. If my mixologist wins not only do they get a trip to France – but I do too! Afterwards we served up some of Dale’s cocktails. It’s always an honor to see Dale and watch him work.
Dale and I enjoying a cocktail!
Here is a one of my favorite Dale DeGroff cocktails:
1/2 oz Cointreau
2 ounces Plymouth Gin
1/2 oz Roses Lime Juice
1/4 oz fresh lime juice
1/4 oz Fernet Branca
Dash of Grenadine
Garnish: rose petal
Directions: Assemble all ingredients in a Boston shaker filled with ice and shake well. Strain in to a chilled martini glass and garnish with a rose petal.
I’m so excited to have been chosen as one of the 101 featured mixologists in the legendary spirit writer Gary Regan’s newest book, Annual Manual for Bartenders, 2011, which includes the recipe for my Bollywood cocktail. It’s an amazing book for any mixologist or budding bartender. So please support this great writer and order your copy today!
If you’re still thirsty then try out my Tea’Thyme cocktail recipe found in the Food & Wine: Cocktails 2011 book due out this summer! I penned the vodka chapter – so stay tuned for more…
Family Works Food Bank had an amazing and successful fundraiser event in late March. They asked celebrated chefs and restaurant owners Rachel Yang of Joule/Revel and Amy McCray of Eva to team up and lead an interactive cooking demo using only food bank ingredients. I was happy to be asked to emcee the event. It was amazing to see and taste the amazing dishes they cooked up for a great cause. Please remember to support your local food banks!
Chef’s Rachel Yang, myself and Amy McCray!
Foster Farms is looking for recipes! If you have an amazing chicken recipe that you think is great and deserves some recognition, make sure you enter the Foster Farms’ Fresh Chicken Cooking Contest. Recipe applicants have until May 31st to turn in recipes for a chance to win a grand prize of $10,000 and a year’s worth of Foster Farms’ chicken! For contest info, click here. A family owned company since 1939, Foster Farms prides itself in raising locally-grown fresh chicken available in grocery stores on the West Coast. The Washington state finals will be held at my Food Studios and I am lucky to be a judge again this year!
2010 Judges: Jamie Peha, myself and Cynthia Nims!
Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen™ Season Two – Coming Soon!
I’ll be filming Season Two of my cocktail show Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen soon with Small Screen Network! I’ll be creating some refreshing summer cocktails and d’lish appetizers. In the meantime, check out past episodes for some libacious inspiration.
May 13 – 17: Manhattan Cocktail Classic: New York, New York
The Manhattan Cocktail Classic is just around the corner! This part conference, part cocktail party and part festival-style liquor and spirits event is open to the industry and to the public! I’ll be presenting the seminar “Three Mixologists, Three Cocktails, Three Ways (or Cocktail Ménage á Trois)” and teaming up with Small Screen Network and fellow renowned mixologists Charlotte Voisey and Jamie Boudreau as we each give our spin on the French 75, a Margarita and the Old Fashioned while discussing the history of the classic versions and our inspiration for our modern versions. For event and ticket info, click here.
June 1 – 4: International Association of Culinary Professionals Conference: Austin, Texas
The IACP Conference is an annual conference where worldwide culinary professionals get the chance to meet up and take part in lively discussions/seminars about the latest trends in the culinary world. I’ll be presenting a seminar this year titled “It’s Better to be Bitter” where we will be tasting bitters and discussing the growing bitters phenomenon. For those industry friends, I hope to see you in Austin. For more information, check out the IACP site.
I’ve also been blogging for Amazon’s Al Dente so I hope you will visit there as well to see what new things I am cooking up this summer. Here’s wishing you all a tasty and d’lish summer! – Kathy
If you haven’t signed up for my Newsletter, you can sign-up here.
Toffee Almond Jumbles
Makes 16 pieces
1 package Almond Accents Butter Toffee Glazed sliced almonds
2 cups Wheat Chex®
1 cup broken pretzel sticks (about 1/2-inch pieces)
1 1/2 cups butterscotch chips
1/2 cup chocolate chips
sea salt for sprinkling (optional)
In large bowl, mix Almond Accents, Wheat Chex and broken pretzels. In a 4-cup microwavable cup, microwave butterscotch chips, uncovered, on medium for 10 seconds; stir and repeat in 10-second intervals until mixture can be stirred smooth. Pour over cereal mixture, stirring until evenly coated.
On a wax-paper lined cookie sheet, form mixture into 16 “stacks”; if mixture begins to cool and crumble, return to microwave for 10 seconds then continue.
In another small microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate chips, uncovered, on medium in 10-second intervals, until chocolate can be stirred smooth. Drizzle chocolate over snack-mix stacks and lightly sprinkle with sea salt if desired. Refrigerate until just set. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
Recipe created by Kathy Casey Food Studios®
We just recently got back from Vegas and had an amazing time at the VIBE Conference! This is the 2nd annual spirits and liquor industry conference where beverage industry leaders, national restaurant accounts and spirit brands come together to discuss all things beverage, showcase tasty new products, learn new things and get inspired. This year I shook it up for the opening night’s Celebrity Mixologist event at the William Grant & Monin “Americana themed bar” with Charlotte Voissey, a world-renowned mixologist! My drink was a play on the soda fountain: the ROOT n’ Rye Float made with ROOT liquor, Hudson Rye, Sailor Jerry and a dash of Fee’s Old Fashioned Bitters. This was shaken and served up with a beautiful “float” of foam made with Monin French Vanilla Syrup. And of course I had to have a little bling bling in there… a dusting of edible gold flakes!
Charlotte Voissey and me at the VIBE Celebrity Mixologist Event
The next day I led a workshop-style seminar with my team about Cocktail Alternatives: Raising the Bar – Without Raiding the Bar! (a tasting discussion on non-alcoholic drinks). We held a lively discussion on what’s new on the non-alcoholic horizon, sampled mocktails such as the Yuzu Mizu and discussed all the cool beverages I have seen on my travels to the Middle East and Asia. The seminar ended with participants making their own non-alcoholic concoctions. You can see a brief overview of the seminar at the VIBE website.
My Yuzu Mizu mocktail
After all that, there was still time to party, eat at great restaurants, dance and party some more! If you’re in Vegas…you might as well live it up! Yeah! We can’t wait for VIBE next year!
My team and me having a blast in Vegas!
My friend Scott and I cleaning razor clams
Last Saturday, March 19th was the 5th Annual Razor Clam Festival! I hosted this year’s festivities once again which kicked off with a Firemen’s Pancake Breakfast. There were a lot of chowders to taste for this year’s Clam Chowder Cook-Offs — the professional and amateur competition! My chef team and I tasted and judged close to 30 chowders altogether! After a great festival, it was time for some clam digging! Stay tuned for a detailed blog with the official winners Clam Chowder Cook-Off competition winners and recipes!
Seattle Dances! was a hit! Plymouth Housing Group’s second annual auction and dinner event brought in lots of people to watch a new group of Seattleites dance their pants off… but not literally! If you remember, last year I put on my dancing shoes and danced the Charleston! This year, I put my dancing shoes away (thankfully!) and shook up some fun with my tasty Rosemary Mandarin Tango cocktail! This blends in the complex character of Moon Mountain vodka with the sweetness of a Cuties Clementine and the herbal note of fresh rosemary.
Rosemary Mandarin Tango
Makes 1 drink
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1/4 Cuties® Mandarin
1 1/2 oz Moon Mountain Vodka
1/2 oz fresh lemon juice
1/2 oz honey syrup*
1 oz brut champagne
Garnish: small sprig of rosemary
Bend rosemary sprig and drop into mixer glass. Squeeze and drop in Cuties Mandarin.
Measure in the Moon Mountain Vodka, lemon and honey syrup. Fill with ice. Cap and shake vigorously.
Strain into a large martini glass. Add a splash of champagne. Garnish with rosemary.
* To make Honey syrup combine 1 part local honey and 1 part hot water. Stir to combine. Store refrigerated.
Recipe © Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen™
The first season of my cocktail show Kathy Casey’s Liquid KitchenTM on Small Screen Network was a hit and I appreciate all the great responses! If you haven’t had a chance to check it out yet log in today and try out my Luxury Piña Colada; a little taste of summer which is just around the corner! We start shooting the next season this spring!
As you may know, I had a fantastic trip to Kuala Lampur over the holidays to develop the bars and nightclubs at Mandarin Oriental Hotel. It was a crazy-busy visit but I did get a chance to sit down with Time Out: Kuala Lampur to talk about mixing up my favorite spirits with some d’lish flavor pairings! Make sure you check it out to get some ideas about unique taste combinations… don’t quote me on that Dr. Pepper comment, though!!! I swear I DID NOT say that!
It’s Tea Thyme! You read that right… Food & Wine online is featuring my lovely Tea Thyme cocktail. It marries English breakfast tea-infused vodka, a little splash of lemon juice, local honey like my own Liquid Kitchen “5130” Honey, and a pretty sprig of thyme for garnish to add a fresh, herbalicious note. This classy cocktail is perfect for a grown-up tea party! Cheers!
This year’s Seattle Food & Wine Experience was a sell-out hit! With wines from over 10 countries and lots of fantastic nibbles from local culinarians there was a lot to see and taste! I was at the Foster Farms booth where my team was serving up my Savory Chicken & Bacon “Cupcakes” with Tabasco Cream Cheese Frosting while I was signing complimentary copies of my Northwest Table, courtesy of Foster Farms. If you weren’t able to attend or did and didn’t catch the recipe, look no further as I’ve included it below, and if you fancy yourself a great cook and are a resident of Washington, Oregon or California then get creating and enter the Foster Farms recipe contest.
Kathy Casey’s Savory Chicken & Bacon “Cupcakes” with Tabasco Cream Cheese Frosting
Makes about 24
1 cup small diced Foster Farm’s raw chicken breast (about 12 oz wt.)
3 Tbsp. butter
1/2 cup each 1/8-inch-diced onion, celery and red bell pepper
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
3/4 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 Tbsp. sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 Tbsp. Old Bay seasoning
1/3 cup whole milk
1/3 cup sour cream
1/2 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed and drained well
8 strips cooked bacon, chopped fine (about 1/2 cup chopped)
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 1/2 Tbsp. milk
1 tsp. Tabasco sauce
Garnish: 2 thinly sliced green onions
Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F
To make the cupcakes: Spray nonstick mini–muffin tins with cooking spray. Set aside.
Cut chicken breast into 1/4-inch small pieces. In a small skillet or sauté pan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the chicken breast and sauté for about 3 minutes moving around the pan with a spoon. When chicken is three-quarters cooked then add the onion, celery, and bell pepper for about 3 to 4 minutes more, until vegetables are just starting to get tender. Add the garlic and sauté about 30 seconds more. Let cool.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, and Old Bay seasoning; set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together the egg, milk, and sour cream.
Once the cooked mixture is cooled, add the cornmeal mixture to the egg mixture, and mix lightly. Fold in the drained corn, bacon, and cooked chicken and vegetables. Do not overmix; fold in just until evenly distributed.
Divide batter between the prepared mini muffin cups, fill to the top – you will get about 24 cupcakes. Bake the cupcakes for about 22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in cupcake center comes out clean.
Let the cupcakes cool in the pan for about 5 minutes, then carefully remove them from the pan and let cool briefly on a wire rack before frosting. The cupcakes can be made up to 1 day in advance, covered, and refrigerated before frosting. Refrigeration is imperative if making in advance. (If reheating them, warm them for minute or so in a 350-degree F oven before frosting.)
To make the frosting: In a small bowl, mash the cream cheese with a fork, then whisk in the milk and Tabasco until smooth and creamy. Top each cupcake with about 1 teaspoon of frosting then sprinkle with green onion for garnish. Serve warm.
© 2011 by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – Liquid Kitchen™ www.kathycasey.com
April 14th – 16th: New Orleans, Louisiana
I’ll be cooking it up in New Orleans for the Mom 2.0 Summit this year! The Mom Summit is an annual event between moms, marketers, and social media specialists. I’ll be there with Almond Accents sharing my tips for delicious almond-related recipes! Check out this year’s event schedule and ticket info!
May 13th – 17th: New York, New York
If you happen to live or be in the area of Manhattan on those dates, make sure that you stop by the Manhattan Cocktail Classic! This is a part conference, part cocktail party and part festival-style liquor and spirits industry event. The best part: it’s open to the public! Come stop by and attend my seminar: Three Mixologists – Three Drinks – Three Ways (or Cocktail Ménage á Trois!) For event and ticket info, click here.
It’s been a whirlwind month so far and shows no signs of stopping with all the super-fun events coming up, so make sure you stay tuned to catch all the details of my adventures! Cheers! – Kathy
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Traveling Traveling Traveling… First Stop Malaysia!
Before 2010 ended I had the honor of being invited to develop and shake up some cocktails for the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia! My husband John and I left on a Monday at 10 am from Seattle, flew to LA and then landed in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday at 1 am!!! Yes, that is the LONGEST flight that I have ever taken and I have no intentions of topping it!
After a day of getting a little rest, we then went to work and spent the next ten days with the hotel’s bartending team. It was a whirlwind of drink development, training and opening new concepts. I have to say that I absolutely went nuts with the ingredients; from fresh kiwi and pink guava juices to my new favorite citrus fruit the calamansi, a tiny little green skinned fruit the size of a nickel with tangy orange flesh — yum! I even found local Malacca palm sugar which I used in an amazing mojito. But all that work did not stop me from trying lots of local cuisine. On Christmas day we got out and about and started our day with amazing dim sum, then enjoyed the local sites — it was a merry day indeed!
The great crew at Casbah, the Mandarin Oriental’s new restaurant and bar! They studied hard!
Once all the work was done, the entire staff thoroughly trained, and all the drinks were in place, it was time to have some fun! I visited local hawkers and mamaks, where there a plethora of vendors cooking up some delicious foods — and this Seattle girl could handle the spicy heat! I represented us well! I even had a big GIANT shaved ice treat to cool me off for dessert after all that spicy food! Here’s what’s in it: shaved ice, sweet corn, sweet red beans, grass jelly, rose syrup and topped with ice cream — a drink and dessert all in one! Oh and its pink too so of course I love it!
Me with my GIANT shaved ice — yum!
We also took a quick overnight trip to Singapore. It’s a quick 45 minute flight and definitely a must-do when in Southeast Asia. We stayed at the fabulous Fairmont Hotel and had an amazing brunch that the chef made for us featuring local specialties including Chili Crab! More yum!
Local Singapore dishes including Chili Crab
Yes I ate durian… in a cream puff in Singapore!
One of the highlights of my trip was being interviewed for Time Out Kuala Lumpur Magazine. Time Out is my favorite magazine when traveling to find the best and coolest places in a city. Amin Khairuddin was my interviewer, a super cool guy that writes about what’s hot in the city as far as drinks and partying goes. I lucked out, as the “Best of Restaurants” issue was just out. I used it as my guide for some delicious Kuala Lumpur adventures!
Amin tasting and shooting my drinks at the Mandarin Oriental for Time Out Magazine.
Oh and then there was China Town in Kuala Lumpur — an amazing market with tantalizing treats at every turn. From pandan pops to fresh squeezed sugar cane juice to charcoal roasted chestnuts … it was hard to decide what to eat next. I loved seeing some of the food carts set up on motorcycles!
China Town! John (on the right) pondering — what to eat next?
Square Ice Cream Pops… the green one is pandan!
Fresh-squeezed sugar cane Juice… now this would be good in a cocktail!
I tried super-sugary, salty “meat candy” squares in Singapore — but the candied cucumbers and carrots were also pretty different:
Candied cucumbers, carrots and ginger
There were plenty of other new and wild things that I enjoyed and I hope to fill you in more with a few videos that I shot along with some more tasty travel tales — stay tuned for my blog on our Southeast Asia trip!
Cold, Cool, and Fun… at Sundance Film Festival and Cheers Beverage Conference in New Orleans
A couple of weeks ago I was invited to a fantastic party hosted by socialite JJ McKay at the Sundance Film Festival. It was an amazing time — celebs, s’mores, cocktails, friends and lots of fun. While I was there my new talent agency Generate LA hosted an amazing party for a little meet-and-greet. I shook up some super cool cocktails including a Triangle Rum Punch made with tea infused Cruzan rum, The Kraken spiced rum and Cachaca shaken with hibiscus infused POM juice, fresh pink grapefruit and Monin Almond syrup served over a Glace luxury ice ball and topped with a sprinkle of edible gold flakes. They went down easy!
Enjoying a cocktail at Sundance! Brr! Yes, that is a goose in my hand!
Then it was off to New Orleans for the Cheers Beverage Conference! Cheers is an annual conference where spirit brands and mixologists gather to discuss all things boozy. It was a busy week of meeting fantastic people, seeing industry friends, parties and eating “everywhere.” The conference ended with a Celebrity Mixologists Reception where I shook it up Tony Abou-Ganim and Dale DeGroff. My signature cocktail was the Pacifica: 1800 silver tequila, Hangar One Mandarin Blossom vodka, a Cuties mandarin, fresh pineapple, kaffir lime leaf, a splash of fresh lime juice and agave nectar — Cheers to New Orleans!
Heather and me in front of the Mardi Gras parade decorations
Now that’s a cocktail! Yowza!
Mark your Calendars and come join me for some tasty fun!
There’ll be a variety of clam-tastic activities to keep everyone entertained, so make sure to plan ahead and get it on the calendar. Stay tuned for more information.
Make sure you get your boots and clamming gear ready! Read more about last year’s fun adventure!
|Thank you to all who attended our Holiday Open House & Extravaganza.
Here’s wishing to a fun year! — Kathy
P.S. If you haven’t seen my new cocktail show “Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen” come check it out on Small Screen Network.
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