Scotch & Sweater Weather – The Blood and Sand cocktail

The Blood and Sand at Prohibition | Sartorial Exposure
It was only a few days ago when I was sweating it out in a sleeveless shirt and shorts to run in a 5K on a beautiful fall day, and today I’m hearing about frost warnings here in the south and a blanketing of snow in my home state of Ohio. As much as I like cooler weather, this wintry onslaught has definitely caught me by surprise.

I enjoy whiskey, typically bourbon and a little rye, but I’m slowly warming up to Scotch. I have friends that are big fans of the spirit and I’m learning about the complexities and differences between various producers and I’m slowly coming around to it.

The Blood and Sand at Prohibition | Sartorial Exposure

A few weeks ago I was able to make a quick stop at a bar that’s eluded me for the past couple of years. It didn’t help that it’s somewhat clandestine, and you need to have a secret phone number to gain entry into the den of classic cocktails and cigars that awaits you at Prohibition. Once I was able to gain entry thanks to a helpful member of staff at the complex, I was greeted by a bartender, Leo who I’ve encountered at another establishment who’s recently moved into a new role there.

The Blood and Sand at Prohibition | Sartorial Exposure

I glanced at the menu and decided on the classic Blood and Sand. If you think that there’s no chance that you’d be into Scotch, this is way to ease you into the spirit. If you prefer your spirits by themselves and on ice, you should definitely take them up on getting it cooled down with a perfectly clear sphere, made with a contraption that retails over $1,000. They’re serious about their ice and spirits.

The Blood and Sand at Prohibition | Sartorial Exposure

Without further ado, the Blood and Sand.

BLOOD AND SAND
3/4 oz Scotch whisky
3/4 oz cherry brandy
3/4 oz sweet vermouth
3/4 oz orange juice

Pour the ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake well and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Garnish with maraschino cherry or orange peel

Cocktail to drink right now: The South Manhattan

South Manhattan cocktail | Sartorial Exposure

 

I love this time of year, the temperature is a bit more bearable here in the Deep South and the cocktails move from light and airy to strong cocktails with a bit more substance for the colder weather. It’s also a time when the beer in my pint glass moves from Belgian wits and hefeweizens to deep dark stouts. Moonshine is pretty hot right now, however DBA Barbecue here in Atlanta has been a fan of the clear stuff since day one. I had a chance to chat with him recently, and although I’m not big on a flavored whiskeys it works in this take of the traditional rye and vermouth fare we know and love.

South Manhattan cocktail | Sartorial Exposure

 

This particular cocktail contains Junior Johnson’s Midnight Moon out of North Carolina. If you can’t find this particular label in your area, feel free to substitute, but please use a whiskey that includes real fruit. I’m not a fan of flavored spirits that are clear and made with artificial flavors. If you decide to infuse it yourself, more power to you! Look for more cocktails from DBA on the blog soon. Don’t miss the recipe below!

South Manhattan cocktail | Sartorial Exposure

 

South Manhattan Cocktail 

1.25 ounces Midnight Moon apple pie moonshine

1.25 ounces Four Roses Yellow Label bourbon

Dash Barkeep Apple bitters

Shake vigorously with ice and strain into martini glass. Garnish with cherry

 

Protect your iDevices with wellput

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I’m the not-so-proud owner of an iPhone 4S with a crack screen. Although my phone was cradled by a case, it was no match for a low window sill that made contact with my glass screen. There are a number of options for phone protection, including the Otter boxes that some swear by, but there are others that wouldn’t dare put their beautifully designed Apple product in a case and boldly take it around naked.

Husband and wife duo Jennifer and John Maley have a stylish solution for lovers of iPhones, eReaders, MacBook Pro’s with luxurious merino wool. They’re still on the hunt for a fabric in the states to work provide a completely American product, until they’ve found an excellent fabric source in Germany. If you’re looking for a custom solution, with measurements of your favorite device, they’re happy to accommodate. I asked a few questions of the Maleys for Sartorial Exposure readers and they’ve been happy to oblige. Check out their website for more details.

WellPut iPhone and MacBook Pro sleeves

On starting wellput:

When we bought a MacBook Air about two years ago, we also tried to buy a sleeve for it. Despite there being many sleeves for them on the market, they pretty much all suffered from one or more issues: too expensive, too bulky, too ugly, not formfitting enough, or just not good enough. It became obvious that what we really wanted was probably going to have to be made on our own or we’d just have to settle for a not-quite-right sleeve. Well, we like to make things. And we don’t like to settle.

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On the decision to use German merino?

We’re using wool felt because it has several great qualities that other typical protective fabrics like neoprene can’t really touch, particularly its almost architectural character – it cuts, folds, and sews super cleanly, more comparable to machining wood or metal than fabric. But at the same time, wool felt is amazingly inviting and touchable. We love the juxtaposition of the super soft classic material with our starkly high tech aluminum and glass devices. And it’s got lots of ecological advantages over most synthetic material, like its low-impact production process and the fact that it’s completely renewable. Hooray, sheep!

As for using German merino wool specifically? Basically, it’s the best. Synthetic/acrylic felt doesn’t feel good to the touch (try wearing an acrylic sweater), so 100% wool was always our choice. There are actually some mills in the U.S. producing 100% wool felt and those were our first choice (an end-to-end U.S.-based product was – and is – our goal), but the colors and textures available are primarily geared toward industrial uses. Germany, though, has a long tradition of using felt for all kinds of consumer goods. Like, a centuries-old tradition. And, well, their felt is pretty great. In our experience, it’s by far the best out there.

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On what sets wellput apart from others on the market

The biggest visible differentiator between our products and the sea of black and neon neoprene that you might find on most store shelves is the felt. Beyond that, our sleeves are very simple and sleek with silhouettes that compliment our devices instead of trying to one-up them with a lot of extreme decoration. But even among other felt products, we offer colors that are uncommon, fun, and stylish (many manufacturers stick with one or two “natural” wool colors). We also don’t make anything until it’s ordered, so we offer a lot of flexibility to our customers. That means we can make sleeves for obscure devices or we can customize something we already make – whether it’s a specific pocket configuration or, say, some extra room to accommodate the Smart Cover on an iPad.

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Cocktail to drink right now: La Sombra

La Sombra Red Pepper-2

 

Today we’ve got another cocktail from my friends at Red Pepper Taqueria in Atlanta. I had to choose a cocktail that had a bit of heat and true to their name. I’ve been trying mezcals over the past few years, with Fidencio and Ilegal being among my favorite brands. This cocktail uses mezcal from Sombra.

La Sombra Red Pepper

Some mezcals can hit you over the head with smoke but I find La Sombra to be quite balanced and perfect for cocktails such as this one. It’s also extremely simple to make with only four ingredients.

La Sombra Red Pepper-3

If you give it a try, let me know what you think!

La Sombra
2 oz Sombra mezcal
1 oz squeezed lime juice
1/2 oz agave nectar
2 slices poblano pepper
 
Muddle 1 slice poblano pepper, agave nectar and mezcal. Add lime juice and shake. Add ice and stir. Double strain into rocks glass with a chipotle salt rim. Garnish with 1 poblano pepper ring.