Today, I’m delighted to announce the immediate availability of the third app in this series, and the first to focus on contemporary mixology, gaz regan’s 101 Best New Cocktails.
Allow me to explain.
Gaz’s long-running project—101 Best New Cocktails—was part of my plans from the outset, because I believe it is one of the most misunderstood and underrated projects in the drinks world. There’s a ton of writing in the popular press about cocktails, and almost all of it is vapid. Each year, a wave of new cocktail books breaks over our heads, and all but a tiny handful are self-serving pulp that nobody will care about six months later.
Meanwhile, gaz has been systematically soliciting, curating and humbly publishing adventurous new drink recipes from bartenders all over the world since 2011. Some of these drinks come from famous bartenders in famous joints but most come from ones you’ve never heard of (and may never hear from again), often in distant and exotic lands. There are only a handful of people in the industry who can cast such a wide net, and gaz is the one who is doing it.
Now, I suspect the misunderstanding about gaz’s project arises from that terrible word “best” in the title. (I wish it wasn’t there, but we’re four years into this now, so it stays.) “Best” represents an instant challenge to anyone who sees themselves as an arbiter of taste, which in the cocktail world is literally everyone. Let’s get past the title. There is no red carpet, no statuettes, and no paparazzi are standing by. Nobody’s personal legacy is on the line here. These are, however—carefully considered—the most notable recipes that have crossed gaz’s desk (or palate) in a given year. And unlike you or me, he’s actually in a position to come up with a lot of them.
Here is the crux: 101 Best New Cocktails concerns what is naturally ephemeral in contemporary mixology, rather than being ephemeral for lack of substance. The results—if you actually take the time to examine them—are illuminating. You can see trends in brands, ingredients and flavors, and overall, learn more about how cocktail culture is alive, world-wide. 101 Best New Cocktails is evidence. It’s a window on the zeitgeist of the drinks world—a record of what’s really going while we’re paying far less attention than we think we are. Gaz has even begun compiling an annual analysis, The Regan Report, presenting his interpretation of that evidence. (The 2014 Regan Report is built into our app, and the 2015 Regan Report will be added when it’s ready.)
So, gaz will still be releasing new recipes on his blog at an average speed of about two a week, and he’ll probably continue to issue an annual print anthology. All those recipes will also now be available packaged in this handy app you can buy and enjoy, should you want to. In this case, the app is purely optional, but it’s a nice option to have! The app has got all the features of our other five-star apps (Beachbum Berry’s Total Tiki and Martin’s Index), and we’ll be putting out frequent database updates to keep up with gaz’s releases.
And by the way, these drinks in 101 Best New Cocktails really do tend to be delicious. You may never try the vast majority of them, but you should have no trouble finding some to love, and, as usual, the app will help you find the ones you can make based upon what ingredients you have.