My Hip Cocktails: Hallowe’en and Handwashing Edition

When thinking about Hallowe’een cocktails, a couple the songs from the Tragically Hip’s EP make for great names. Who doesn’t want to prowl the streets at night howling at the moon with I’m a Werewolf, Baby blasting through the headphones. Cemetery sideroad also provides an ideal inspiration for diabolical use of evil spirits. Both concepts are also congruent with the Mexican celebration of the Day of the Dead, so I was inspired in that sense as well.

For the I’m a Werewolf, Baby, I wanted to use Reposado tequila not only for Mexican flare but also for the gold/brown colour which seems in line with something one might associate with a hairy beast. In addition, I like the smoothness of this tequila and would argue it’s one of the few boozes where the darker version is a bit tamer than the light. Sticking with this hairy Hallowe’een hue, I mixed with Jarrito’s tamarind soda along with some Dillon’s Mole bitters and lime juice for balance. This was also an opportunity to use up a bit of my huge flask of my Dillon’s grenadine which added a seasonal sanguine touch.

I’m a Werewolf, Baby!

1.5-2 oz of Reposado tequila (I used Espolon)

1/2 oz fresh lime juice

2-3 drops of Dillon’s Mole Bitters

Jarritos Tamarind Soda

Grenandine (I used Dillon’s)

Ideally, add tequila, lime and bitters to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake for 10-15 sec. Add to a highball class with ice and top with the soda. Garnish with a lime wheel and bloody it up with grenadine. Alternatively, you can add the tequila, lime and bitters to the glass and stir then add the soda and garnish accordingly.

I’m a Werewolf, Baby!

Public Service Announcement – Wash your damn hands!

I found this picture on a reddit feed as part of the platform so make a drink, wash your hands and sing along.

For the cemetery sideroad, I wanted to stick with the Mexican theme put play on the sideroad so figured a spin on a traditional side car worked well. In the end, it might be explained as the love child of a sidecar and a margarita. I also liked the ability to use a little cognac to feel like a French foreign legion tramp. Since I had the Reposado out already, I used it as a base. I added the traditional sidecar ingredients, cognac and triple sec (which is also ideal in a margarita of course) along with some lime juice and a bit of maraschino juice for colour. Once again, grenadine is a great way to bloody things up, especially if you aren’t keen on eating somebody’s mother for dessert.

Cemetery Sideroad

1 oz tequila (I used Reposado Espolon)

0.5 oz Triple Sec

0.5 oz Cognac

0.5 oz lime

2-3 drops mole bitters

splash of maraschino cherry juice (optional)


blood orange soda (optional)

Add all alcohol, lime, bitters and cherry juice to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake for 15-20 seconds. Pour into a coupe glass. Garnish with a dried lemon or orange wheel and bloody it up with grenadine. Top with a splash of blood orange soda if you want a less boozy taste.

Cemetery Sideroad

I’m looking for a cemetery sideroad
I’m screaming like a lighthouse lamp
I’m chasing after what I think that I’m owed
Like a French foreign legion tramp

Cemetery Sideroad- The Tragically Hip EP


Paying Homage to the Hip an Inch an Hour While There’s Still Trouble at the Henhouse

Like most people, I have to adapt to the new reality. I opened up this blog for the first time in quite a while and realized the last time I posted was about a week after the shit hit the fan with Covid-19. At the time, I thought it would be a hiccup in my continued efforts to conquest restaurants across Canada and the US. More than 4 months later, I have yet to sit inside a restaurant, stay in a hotel or travel much further than an hour’s radius for purposes other than either golf or picking up my son from university. I went through the same adaptive mechanisms as many others…I made sourdough, hunted for flour, read online cooking tutorials, gained 10 pounds and likely became an alcoholic. The latter evolved from home consumption of beer and cheap wine to cocktails and more expensive vinos ( I could justify the fact that I no longer spend 75 bucks on a bottle in a restaurant so I could drop $40 at the LCBO). Now, I relish a trip to the LCBO to invest in yet another bottle of something to patch the void once filled with $20 creative concoctions at a hipster Toronto watering hole. I’m now a member of Amazon Prime (yes…2018 called) and have made frivolous purchases including a cocktail shaker kit as well as highball and stemless martini glasses to prepare and vessel the results of my alcoholic alchemy.

I’ve also worn my dog’s nails down walking her while listening to hours of Spotify. One thing that hasn’t changed is my affinity for the Tragically Hip. Regrettably, one of the first causalities of covid for me was the Gord Sinclair concert scheduled at Massey Hall in April. Thankfully, I was able to listen Taxi Dancers on repeat for a few weeks to ease the pain.

Collectively, all of these factors got me thinking. While walking the dog yet again, I started thinking of the titles of Tragically Hip songs and realized many of them would make great cocktail names and my growing arsenal of potent potables would give me the ammunition needed to pay homage to my favorite band. With something like 150 songs to inspire me, we may have a vaccine well before I dream up all my namesake drinks and whittle my stash down to a trunk full of 20 cent returns. Let’s get started…..