Ivan Lauer

Ivan Lauer is a contributor to Drinkhacker.

Eggnog: A Holiday Cocktail History

By Ivan Lauer | December 14, 2017 |

It’s that time of year again: holiday joy, holiday cheer, and of course, holiday cocktails. One drink that can make your nights a little more merry and bright is eggnog, that love-it-or-hate-it egg-and-alcohol combination that goes great with turkey and figgy pudding and whatever other holiday treats you want to indulge in before swearing them…

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How to Make Conditum Paradoxum, Ancient Roman Spiced Holiday Wine

By Ivan Lauer | December 13, 2017 |

December is the month of many holidays, but one winter celebration that’s been lost to time is the ancient Roman tradition of Saturnalia, a festival that lasted from December 17th to December 23rd. The Saturnalia was dedicated to the Roman God Saturn, and involved banquets, gift-giving, and a flipping of social norms such as slaves…

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How to Make the Perfect Sazerac Cocktail

By Ivan Lauer | November 3, 2017 |

So you’ve mastered mixing the manhattan, the old fashioned is old news, and you can recite the difference between a gin martini and a vodka martini in your sleep. And yet, that classic cocktail itch is still there. Well read on, because today we’re going to explore another simple, early cocktail, one that isn’t as…

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NaNoWriMo Special: Great Authors’ Great Cocktails

By Ivan Lauer | November 2, 2017 |

It’s that time again. November is National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo, where authors of all ages and experience levels challenge themselves to write a 50,000-word novel in a mere 30 days. Whether you’re already hard at work on your next opus, or you’re getting things ready for an attempt next year, get those creative…

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Understanding the Different Styles of Tequila

By Ivan Lauer | September 29, 2017 |

Like rum, tequila is a versatile spirit: it can be consumed straight or mixed into a wide variety of cocktails, it can make sweet drinks or savory, it’s appropriate for a night on the town or curled up by the fire at home. But there are so many different styles of tequila, it can get…

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What Grains are Used to Make Whiskey (And Why?)

By Ivan Lauer | September 27, 2017 |

You might think that there’s not much to making whiskey: it’s just grain, right? Like beer, but distilled? But there’s actually more to it than that, and like gin, what goes into the whiskey can wildly change the taste of what you get in the bottle. It’s true that, at its simplest, whiskey is just…

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What’s the Difference Between a Pot Still and a Column Still?

By Ivan Lauer | September 21, 2017 |

If you’re a shrewd imbiber, you may notice that some bottles of liquor — for instance, Irish whiskey like Redbreast — advertise a particular kind of still used to produce the spirit, in this case “single pot still.” Elsewhere, you may notice other bottles — like Japanese whisky Nikka — instead touting something called a Coffey still…

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How Is Brandy Made?

By Ivan Lauer | September 12, 2017 |

“Claret is liquor for boys; port for men; but he who aspires to be a hero must drink brandy.” – Samuel Johnson So you understand what different kinds of whiskey are called and why, and you can name the aromatics used in gin without a second thought, but brandy is still a spirit that eludes…

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What’s the Best Way to Cellar Wine?

By Ivan Lauer | August 4, 2017 |

So you’re a fan of good wine, and you’ve just acquired a nice bottle. It’s not something you’re going to drink right away, and perhaps you want to put it down for a while and let the passage of time potentially improve what’s inside. If this is your first time cellaring a bottle of wine,…

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Do Bitters Go Bad?

By Ivan Lauer | July 22, 2017 |

Reader Sam writes: “Hi Drinkhacker, love your articles. I have a question maybe you can answer. I’ve had a bottle of bitters on my shelf for a while now, and I was wondering if bitters ever go bad. Thanks for reading and keep up the good work.” Sam’s question is a good one. If you’re…

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