Whiskey Fiz – Recipe below from Jerry Thomas’ Bon Vivants Companion 1928

Use medium bar glass 

One teaspoonful of fine white sugar

One small lump of ice.

Three dashes of lemon juice. 

One wineglass of Bourbon or rye whiskey.

Fill up the glass with seltzer or Apollinaris water, stir thoroughly and serve

Last night a group of us went out to East London for some ‘research’. There’s some really creative stuff happening in London where rents are low, its just a shame it takes so long to get there. Winner for the evening would have to be the ‘Discount Suit Company’, and it was the winner as it felt like a real bar. You stood in front of a bar, bartenders made you great drinks, there was atmosphere and everything about it was fun. Too many bars these days focus on drinks, not on hospitality, these places are not fun, they’re interesting. Would you rather date someone fun, or interesting?

The Apollinaris water caught my eye in the above, it’s a German brand from a spring discovered on a vineyard in 1852, when the first edition of this book was written in 1862 I doubt it had reached the US, having only been discovered 10 years earlier, heading towards this reprint though it was producing over 40 million bottles per year, so pretty well known. Its still available today and is owned by one of the giant food conglomerates.

I was recently talking to a friend with a tequila brand who’s just spent time looking at how different mineral contents in water affect the overall taste when added to a spirit, and he’d found a sweet spot for calcium and other solids, on trying is it does make a slight but noticeable difference. Considering the enormous volume of bitters, syrups and liqueurs Jerry Thomas has at the back of his book I can’t help but think this is the sort of tinkering he would’ve done, maybe this is something we might see a switch back to.

The drink itself was what I needed today, something light, fizzy, and not to complex which helped to inject some more ethanol into my deprived body and perked up my day no end. Its essentially a Collins, although I went for it without that small lump of ice and really enjoyed it. It definitely helped our cocktail class tonight.

And yes, that’s Fiz with one ‘z’.