Distilling Magic

The magic here isn’t the result of distilling grain or grape, but of distilling the last three years or so of cocktail trends. This little video, produced using Xtranormal, was written by Phillip Duff for a seminar at the Manhattan Cocktail Classic, featuring himself and Angus Winchester.
Oh, in this particular distilling method, all they kept was the most heinous of the heads and tails of the run….

This video is really a piece of genius. Most readers of the Cocktailosphere will need no annotation, but I can’t resist a little highlighting. (You probably ought to watch the vid first, as I try not to give away the jokes with my comments.)

  • While in the video the customer is an off-duty bartender, not a blogger, I blush to admit I see a good bit of my own behavior in him. At least in the whole sitting at the end of the bar, watching the bartender work like I’m trying to break down the Zapruder film.
  • I haven’t personally had any of the whiskey brand mentioned, you hear it specified all the time during Thursday Drink Night….
  • I officially offer a prize to the cocktail historian blogger who unearths the recipe for the Gloogelflocken Swizzle. Offer void if I post it here first….
  • I suspect the technique for drink making that they discuss may be the Hard Shake. If it isn’t… it should be.
  • The customer is obviously not Rick Stutz, as he doesn’t want enough bitters.
  • Love the name checks of Baker and Embury. Oh, and I am utterly guilty as charged.
  • Two phrases: “A Kardashian” and “black hole”. The they aren’t connected but appear in the same riff. It’s epic.
  • I don’t know how Duff or Winchester make their Old Fashioneds, but mine take less time to make than my Cosmopolitan, so it’s the only punchline to fail, at least for me.
  • Since I have studiously avoided any mention of the barrel-aging frenzy gripping Cocktailia, I will simply sit back and feel superior to those who have succumbed and are summarily thrashed herein.

Thanks to That’s the Spirit! for the head’s up on the video.


  1. This one isn’t bad. I love most of the Xtranormals, but this one didn’t quite hit the mark for me, for some reason.

    I think the Old Fashion quip failed as well. My favorite was the overly-bitter quip.

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  2. DavidS

    24 May

    I got more chuckles out of this than I do from the average SNL skit.

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  3. Doug

    25 May

    XTranormal is is wonderful tool for this sort of thing. You just need to have the sense of humor, and you can leave me laughing.

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