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This is not an actual entry. ^_^;

Just to note that I'm still here, and now, with the previous gig concluded, I have time on my paws.

Yes. Be afraid. =:)

(Actual LJ entry coming.. mm, probably in the next day or two, given I doubt Friday's going to be any use photographically, and Wednesday did actually turn out well worthwhile for a good stroll. Meanwhile, there's so much to catch up on documenting, notably the whole weekend of Nov 22-24, which also saw me finally get to meet up with one LJer of distinction, and another fur who lurks adorably, and very shinily =:)

Meanwhile.. what spirits do folks love? Spiced rum, ancient whisky, mellow potato vodka.. ?
I've been drinking rye recently. I've become enamored with both the complexity and the price point. While these are American spirits, they should be available over there.

Use Bulleit Rye in a "Real Manhattan"

A Real Manhattan is only made with the highest quality ingredients as a cocktail is only as good as it's cheapest ingredient. Since the area code is 212, the proportions of the Manhattan are 2-1-2.

2 Bulleit Rye
1 Noily Pratt Vermouth
2 dashes Angostura bitters

1 Luxardo Marachino Cherry to garnish

Another Rye drink I 'invented' for the fall is 'Maple Old Fashioned'

1 shot Templeton rye
1 dash Grade A Organic Maple Syrup
5 dashes Black Walnut Bitters

Hmm! I wonder how a Manhattan would work using Professor Cornelius Ampleforth's Proprietary Barley Spirit Drink.. probably an entirely different beast, but I may have to give it a try. =:9 It's not one of theirs I've tried yet, but I can highly recommend both the Navy Strength Rumbullion, which I encountered at a superb little drinks shop near the previous gig's campus, and Bathtub Gin, which happened to be available at a tiny pub we stumbled upon in London a few weeks ago, prior to the night's fireworks on a friend's farm. (They go all out, putting on quite a professional display!)

Black walnut bitters! Ooh, that sounds positively intriguing. And maple syrup.. now that I definitely need to bear in mind when we're next having a cocktail evening, as I do have some good syrup in the fridge, occasionally finding its way into stir-fries.

(And if you're tempted by those spirits, the maker does indeed deliver worldwide)
Looks like you've become a big fan of Ampleforth. There is a bar near me that specializes in Rum called 'Smuggler's Cove'. They have a menu with 70 drinks and no food, and all 70 drinks come with a detailed description as well as a history. They have like 8 different recipes for grog. I'm guessing Rumbullion might be had there. They have a rum tasting menu and openly brag about having bought up the remaining supply of the Naval blend of rum when it was decommissioned in the 70s(when the UK navy stopped giving rum rations to sailors).

Based on your recommendations, I'm eager to try these and will actually check if I can grab it at our local 'rare spirit' dealer which might mean I can skip the $40 in shipping fees.

If I may, explore Rye. Start with the expensive stuff. Angel's Envy is my favorite 'starter rye' as it's finished in Rum casks, giving it a sugary, burnt caramel finish. It's $80 a bottle here in the US.

Whistle Pig is my next on my hit list. The 10-year is great and the 11 year isn't worth the extra price. Whistle Pig is a 100% rye that is aged 10 years. It has one of the most complex finishes I've encountered in Rye. It's about $90 a bottle. The nice thing about Rye is that it's been overlooked for so long that it's still pretty cheap. The most expensive bottle of 25yr rye caps out around $200 a bottle, compared to the many thousands you can spend on a 25 year brandy or scotch.