Holy Shit Mezcal Moment

There are indeed such things as happy accidents!
On our way to Los Danzantes the other day (more on that later), we took a wrong turn, that turned out to be one of the highlights of our Oaxaca trip.

Stopping to ask for directions led to an impromptu visit to a small mezcal palenque, where we got to help loading the oven with agaves – how cool is that!
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Admittedly, not at all correctly dressed for the job, but definitely made up with eagerness!
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The tahona where the cooked agaves are crushed by horsepower.
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The crushed agave is then moved to the fermentation vat, water is added and its left to ferment for days – depending on the temperature/season.
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After fermentation, the liquid is then distilled in this copper still, resulting in a fabulous liquid called Gran Calenda Mezcal. No need to google it, I’ve already tried, no such luck.
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We even got to try the repo, which had been rested for around 2 years, but I must admit – my favourite was the blanco tobola, currently resting well in my luggage.
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It’s so fascinating to me that these rural and primitive location (not meant in a bad way) can produce a spirit with such depth and elegance. This trip has really opened my eyes when it comes to mezcal, and the more I learn, the more fascinated I am with this spirit!
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This might be the coolest hipsta horse in Oaxaca. Look at that haircut – brilliant!
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It’s almost time | World Class TV Premiere

It’s almost time guys!

From what I hear, the UK version will premiere on November 17th on Food Network UK, and its American counterpart on November 18th on Travel Channel.

One can only guess what has made the cut, but I’m sure we’re in for a lot of brilliant bartender tv moments!
For now, you can watch the tv trailer here for some hints of what to come.

Food moments | Mexico City

I.Love.Streetfood! Yesterday I had the most amazing huitlacoche quesedilla, something I’ve only read about, and it was every bit as delicious as I expected. The thrill of visiting local markets and eating street food is something I will never stop loving, and in my opinion, the best way to really experience a country’s food culture.
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Mexico City | Finally we meet!

Buenas tardes desde México!

I can’t believe its really happening, but we are in Mexico City with the wonderful team from Licorería Limantour, one of the best cocktail bars here in Mexico. These guys are so cool its unbelievable, and I can’t wait to guestbartend next week!
I have never been here before, so this is really a dream come true, only the food is better and the mezcal is more amazing.

Today we had the chance to go and see the pyramids at Teotihuancan, just outside of Mexico City, and wow what an amazing day it has been. Before starting our climb up to the top, we had a mandatory shot of mezcal, and then it was only one way to go – up.
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Tomorrow we’re off to Oaxaca aka Mezcal heaven, and I can’t even begin to explain how excited I am. We’ve already had some pretty amazing mezcals, and its absolutely fascinating to learn more about this spirit.

See you in Oaxaca!

Barhopping | Prague

This past week have been spent on the road, I apologise for the lack of updates, visiting some amazing cities around Europe – starting in fabulous Prague.

This was my second time going to Prague Bar Show, and I must say, I really enjoyed coming back! Its a smaller show than its counterparts in, lets say Berlin and Paris, but of course so is the bar scene. This however, does not mean lack of quality or passion!

Prague has some really amazing bars, my favourites include

Hemingway Bar | Karolíny Světlé 26, Praha 1, Open every day
I absolutely love this bar. Some might remember my rantings about the Becher Butter Sour, the drink that converted me into a full blown Becherovka fan, and this is it’s place of birth. Care to guess what I was drinking monday evening?

The bar is spread over two floors, but be sure to ask if you can visit upstairs, which is my favourite space. PRague

Bugsy’s Bar | Pařížská 10, Praha 1, Open every day
This was the first bar I visited in Prague, and all though the picture really doesn’t give it justice, this space is great! The details here are amazing, and it’s one of those bars where you can sit for hours.
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Black Angel’s | Staroměstské náměstí, Praha 1, Open every day
This bar is a must. It’s that amazing. The space is incredible, the drinks are delicious and the team makes sure you have a fantastic evening. I love sitting in the bar watching the guys work, and just admire this amazing venue!
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Cestr | Legerova 75/57, Praha 1, Open every day
This is a must if you love meat – or beer! I recommend you to try the historical draughts, which is different ways of pouring beers, giving them distinctive variations in flavour. And do try the tartar.
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Nordic Flavours | Gravlaks

This upcoming week will mark the end of an eventful october, and ending on a high note , with Prague, Amsterdam and Oslo all on the agenda.

First up on monday is Prague Bar Show. This will be the second time for me, but the first time presenting, which is extremely exciting!
I’m doing a seminar called Breaking Traditions | Nordic Flavours in mixology, which talks about nordic ingredients and flavours, as well as how to use them behind the bar, and what challanges you might face using traditional drinks such as beer and aquavit in new ways.

As part of my presentation, I will serve different tasters, and one of them will be gravlaks/ cured salmon paired with one of my favourite aquavits.
Even though there are a lot of excellent suppliers for gravlaks, I decided to continue an old family tradition, and make it myself – although I changed the recipe somewhat to match the pairing with the aquavit.

Gravlaks is super simple and delicious, and the best part when you’re making it yourself – you can choose the flavourings!

What you need

2 x 500 g salmon pieces ( Make sure they are equal in size not just weight)
100 g Sea salt
100 g granulated sugar
1 bunch of fresh dill
1 pinch freshly ground black pepper
1/4 tsp All Spice
3 tbs Becherovka

Instructions

1. Clean the salmon, making sure there are no scales and bones, then rinse with water. Dry with paper towels.
Mix salt, sugar and spices in a bowl, then pick the dill from the stem and place in a different bowl. I prefer not to chop it, but thats just my personal taste.
Cover a baking trey, or cutting board with cling film, however – do not cut it, just leave it on the roll. This way you can easily wrap the salmon afterwards.
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2. On the cling film, place a layer of dill equivalent of the size of your salmon, and then sprinkle the salt/sugar/spice mix on top. Drizzle the Becherovka over your salmon fillets, before placing the first salmon piece on top of the spices. Normally I would use aquavit or cognac for this, but seeing how I’m serving this in Prague, I wanted to use something local. I also think that the flavours of the Becherovka will match very well with the aquavit I’m serving.
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3. After placing the salmon on top of the spices, add a new layer of dill and the salt/sugar/spice mix, before placing the second salmon fillet on top of that.
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4. Cover the second salmon fillet with the last layer of dill and salt/sugar/spice mix, before wrapping it tight in cling film.
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5. Leave it on a trey or a pan in the fridge, as it will leak, for 3-4 days, turning it over every 12 hours.
When it’s time to serve, just wipe off the dill and spices, then slice it and enjoy!

Five Beers | Haandbryggeriet

Last weekend was spent in my hometown Oslo, and one of the perks of being back was obviously the beer. Even though I don’t drink beer as often anymore, I still enjoy tasting, even if it is just a couple of sips.

Norway has an amazing craft beer scene, and one of the local breweries just outside Oslo is Haandbryggeriet. They make, in my opinion, very interesting brews and I am particularly fan of these

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The bar with no ice | White Lyan

Much overdue, I finally managed to stop by White Lyan for some cocktails. I was very curious about this concept, quite a ballsy statement, with no ice and no citrus.
No need to worry though – the drinks are delicious!

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Moby Dick Sazerac

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Layered Negroni

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Bone Dry Martini

 

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Monkey Ball

 

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Beeswax Old Fashioned

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White Guinness

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A day in Stockholm

Yesterday I was in Stockholm for the day, which is much to short for such a wonderful place.

Nevertheless, even a few hours was enough to visit a few new (to me) places

Le Rouge | Brasserie style restaurant with amazing decor. They also have a cocktail bar, Le Bar, on the upper floor which everyone told me I had to come back for.
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Nosh and Chow | I love this townhouse style restaurant. Decadent and stylish, with an amazing bar on top. One of my favourite spots in Stockholm!
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Photos by westerntaste.com, tripadvisor.co.uk