Entrepreneur. Cocktail and spirit champion. Old world wine provocateur.
First off, let me say for the record that I think New Year’s Eve is lame. It ranks just barely ahead of Halloween in my book as the worst holiday of the year. I don’t feel any different when the year changes and I still have to go to work. And you can make a resolution any day of the year if you just gave enough of a shit to do it. And you can assess on a 12 month rolling basis at any point in time. And those pointy hats are stupid. And that bar is overpriced on New Years Eve. So if we’re making lists on New Years Eve, here is mine. The worst holidays of the year:
1. New Year’s Eve
3. Valentine’s Day (not because I don’t like celebrating with your loved ones, only because its so artificial)
4. St. Patrick’s Day (why? tell me what you celebrate on St Pattys day…)
5. Cinco de Mayo
But that’s not the list that people want to see nor the one that they will be pumping out over the last few days of 2011. What we’ll see is the classic “best of” list. There are lots of things that I can think of to put on a best of list, but I think my time is better spent taking stock of the year gone by and making some bold statements for 2012. And it seems like more fun, too. So this isn’t a “best of” or a “top trends” or a “best meals” or “best drinks” list. It’s internal, probably only relevant to me, and possibly completely uninteresting to you. Deal.
So let’s start with the things that I think went well this year.
1. Found a little groove with this blog, posting some rants and recipes, and really just doing whatever the hell I want. And I like it better. And people seem to be reading it.
2. Undertaken some more ambitious cocktail projects such as barrel aging, the japanese siphon project, hop infused gin, pineapple shrubs and many more not posted on this blog. It feels good to be creative.
3. Studied a substantial amount for the Cicerone. I’ve still got a way to go, but I’ve had good focus and made good progress. The more you know…
5. Completed Bar Smarts.
6. Took a new approach to liqueurs, amaros and mixers and found a lot of cool new spirits which went into some cool new cocktails.
7. Threw some stellar events that revolved around food and drink.
However, there are certainly some things that I could stand to improve upon.
1. Follow up – There are a number of projects that made it through approximately one day and then were shelved due to lack of focus. In 2012 I need to start, follow through, and finish.
2. I need to post more often. I did ok this year, posting 34 times in 2011. But I think I can do more.
3. I’d like to guest bartend more often. I’ve been doing this from time to time and have talked about doing it more but I haven’t made it happen. You can learn so much from watching someone else’s technique and how they work.
4. I need to be less anti-social and network more. That would help.
5. I may have pissed some people off this year. I”m not sure which of these two lists that belongs on, but I’ll place it here for the time being. I suppose only time will tell on that one.
6. Focus, focus, focus. I need to narrow in on the things that are most productive and attack them with ferocity.
So, there you go. The best not best-of, not best-ever, not best-anything list I could put together. Make sure you drink well in January and happy 2012!