Drinking in Public in 2023

Howdy, dear and stalwart readers. Drinking in Public has been too long neglected, and I’m sorry for that. I can explain…

I had a dang baby

Here’s Where We’re Heading

That said, Drinking in Public isn’t a personal blog, it’s an art and beverage blog. So here’s what 2023 will look like on this site.

First, Drinking in the Public Domain Vol. 2 will actually be out soon, though the theme will likely be altered from the preview some months ago. Chances are good that the theme will be either food or flowers. Expect updates soon.

Speaking of updates, I now have an update schedule- there will be at least one post weekly from here on out, generally on Monday or Tuesday. Updates might be a recipe, technique stuff, art, restaurant musings, or recipe list updates. In an effort to make this website useful for newer bartenders and bar managers, I will also make an effort to document cocktail and menu development and the like. Maybe a combo of all of these things. Similarly, subscribers to the Drinking in Public Patreon will get updates on a similar schedule.

Enough Housekeeping!

Let’s talk about a drink.

We’ve started working on a Spring menu over at Playa Provisions, and for the first time our old fashioned menu will include a drink that is not made with whiskey.


Prototyping just started; at present, the drink is Tequila Ocho Plata, lime bitters, and a black pepper syrup blended with a de-spiced jalapeno. For parity, here’s the recipe:

  • 2 oz Tequila Ocho Plata
  • 1/4 oz Double Pepper Syrup*
  • 2 dashes lime bitters

*Double Pepper Syrup

  • 1 oz (by volume) black peppercorns
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 Jalapeno
  • 8 oz lemon-lime soda

Cut your jalapeno in half and cover it with the lemon-lime soda. Let it soak for an hour, rinse, and voila! The spice is completely gone. While the pepper soaks, gently toast the pepper in a saucepan until fragrant, and add the water. Simmer for 10-15 minutes or until reduced by half. Add the sugar while the liquid is hot and stir until fully dissolved. Blend the black pepper syrup and the jalapeno on high and strain.

Stir all the ingredients and strain over ice.

Write Drunk, Edit Sober

This is a first draft, so to speak. It’s flavorful, but not particularly well balanced, and it needs more structure. So where do we go from here?

First of all, the base spirit needs to change. Ocho Plata is a little too easy drinkin’. A nice mezcal might get the job done, or else a tequila with a little bit of age on it. Right now I’m thinking that a split of the two might be best– we’ll have to see.

Second, the black pepper needs to come through a bit better to provide some aromatic piquancy. That might just mean a crack of pepper on the ice cube.

Third, the bitters are a bit flat. Cilantro-lime bitters are the new project of the week.

See you, space cowboy…

I’m calling it, because this has been a real doozy of a post. Expect an update to the recipe list in the coming week!

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