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Mouthing Off

By the Editors of Food & Wine Magazine

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Wine Wednesday

Brunch Drinks

© Tina Rupp

Try pairing the three drinks below with a fantastic brunch recipe, like this Smoked-Salmon Scramble with Dill Griddle Biscuits. // © Tina Rupp

Ah, brunch. People go bonkers for brunch. Say the word “brunch,” and your friends will say things like, “Yeah! Great! Let’s do it!” Unless they have kids, in which case they’ll look sort of morose, because instead of going to brunch with you they’re going to be at a birthday party for five-year-olds. But that’s the human condition: Sunday-morning cocktails, then offspring, and finally death.

Be that as it may, in terms of drink options, folks tend to default to one of three things: a mimosa, usually made with some Minute Maid and a bottle of random sparkling wine that someone brought over six months ago; a Bloody Mary (which I’m not knocking at all); or Champagne. Yet because life is short and the human condition is dire, why not experiment while you still have a chance? 3 Fantastic Brunch Drinks. »

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Expert Guide

Insider’s Sicily with a Seattle Star Chef

Chef Maria Hines in Sicily

Photos Courtesy of Maria Hines

Before opening her third Seattle restaurant, Agrodolce, on December 21, Food & Wine Best New Chef 2005 Maria Hines traveled to Sicily for research. Here, highlights from her eating tour. READ MORE »

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Drink This Now

The Newest Holiday Punches

New Holiday Punches: Passed Bright Milk Punch

Passed Bright Milk Punch © Nathan Rawlinson.

Long before there were martinis and daiquiris, Manhattans and mai tais, there was punch. Punch dates to the early 17th century, when it was imported to England by officers of the East India Company, according to writer John Ayto, who just published a new edition of The Diner’s Dictionary: Word Origins of Food & Drink.

Made in batches and perfect for holiday entertaining, punches are especially popular this time of year among bartenders looking to put their own spins on festive cocktails. Brooklyn’s buzzed-about Scandinavian restaurant Aska—from chef Fredrik Berselius (Aquavit, Per Se) and partner Eamon Rockey, formerly of Atera—is now serving three innovative punches. “Punch is about community and about enjoying something together,” says Rockey. MORE »

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Editor Picks

The Ultimate Hot Chocolate Coming to a Store Near You

The City Bakery Hot Chocolate

Courtesy of The City Bakery

One of the best hot chocolates in the country will soon be available nationwide. New York’s City Bakery has become famous for its dedication to hot chocolate: During its annual Hot Chocolate Festival in February, it offers different flavors (fresh ginger, bourbon) every day. But owner Maury Rubin’s classic version has the biggest cult following. Count F&W’s editor in chief, Dana Cowin, among the drink’s fervent devotees. “I will take a 40-minute trip downtown for this hot chocolate because it’s available nowhere else in the universe,” she says. That's about to change.

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Supermarket Sleuth

Amazing Spices, Sold in Just the Right Amounts

Courtesy of Spicely Organic Spices.

Courtesy of Spicely Organic Spices.

F&W Executive Food Editor Tina Ujlaki applies her incredible cooking knowledge to explaining what to do with a variety of interesting ingredients.

Buying spices can be a big investment in two ways—spices tend to be pricey, and you sometimes have to buy way more than you need for a specific recipe you’re curious to try. I discovered Spicely Spices when I needed 1 teaspoon of pink peppercorns, and I was so thrilled to find a tiny box of them that contained just a little more than the recipe called for. The company packs its all-organic spices in larger jars too, but I’ve come to rely on the small boxes to sample spices I’m not familiar with, for spices that I don’t use very often and also for seasonings to pack in my bag if I’m going away for a week, or even just heading off to cook part of a holiday meal at a friend’s house.

Related: How to Cook with Spices
Mild to Spicy Recipes
Spicy Recipes

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