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This workshop is for educational purposes only. Please take part in our latest workshop for your chance to be presented with the Bartender's Dream Library or Bartender's Deluxe Cocktail Kit.



Share on Facebook BARTENDER WORKSHOP #2: MAKING THE PERFECT PUNCH
Improve your understanding and appreciation of America's most popular spirit by reading Punch, the book by David Wondrich, PhD. Then, test your knowledge with our multiple-choice quiz. Next, complete the Recipe Challenge and Extra Credit for your chance to be presented with the Bartender's Dream Library and join our elite featured bartenders.
MEET THE INSTRUCTOR
David Wondrich is hailed as the foremost authority on cocktail history and as a founder of the modern craft cocktail movement. The longtime Drinks Correspondent for Esquire magazine has authored many articles and five books, including Imbibe! (2007), the first cocktail book to win a James Beard Award. His book, Punch, has received wide acclaim and sparked a resurgence in punch-making. Currently, he’s working on the Oxford Companion to Spirits and Cocktails and is a founding partner at the Beverage Alcohol Resource. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.
MULTIPLE CHOICE QUIZ

This workshop is for educational purposes only. Please take part in our latest workshop for your chance to be presented with the Bartender's Dream Library or Bartender's Deluxe Cocktail Kit.


PART I: TEST YOUR KNOWLEDGE
THINK YOU KNOW VODKA? TAKE THE 10-POINT TEST.
All questions are taken from the recommended reading material above.
= incorrect = correct
1. During the 17th century, Punch was the choice drink for:
2. In 1678, Punch rose to even further popularity in England, due to:
3. In England, Punch ascended as a sociable companion drink to:
4. As Punch became a status drink in England, a bowl would have cost the equivalent of how much in today's money?
5. Which of these sprits would not have appeared in an 18th century Punch?
6. Punch is popularly referred to as:
7. Punch is making a comeback. However, initially it fell out of favor due to all of the below except for...?
RECIPE CHALLENGE
PART II: RECIPE CHALLENGE
TELL US YOUR RECIPE FOR A 21ST CENTURY PUNCH

The Punch mixers of the 17th century did not have vodka at their disposal, so your challenge is to create a Punch that includes today’s most popular spirit. Aim for a Punch that will suit modern tastes, yet would still be recognizable as Punch to imbibers of yesteryear. Your modern Punch recipe can be concocted as a traditional bowl for a crowd, or in the format of an individual Punch, which became increasingly popular by the middle of the 19th century.

The core ingredients of a traditional punch include spirits, citrus, sugar, water and spice. In Punch: the Delights (and Dangers) of the Flowing Bowl, David Wondrich proclaims, quite poetically, a reliable ratio of these ingredients is “One of sour, one of sweet, / Four of strong and six of weak,” strong being a spirit, and weak being water and/or ice. Below is a little more detail on what he means with that quote.

Sour
Lemon and lime are the classic sour notes embraced by sailors for their vital vitamin C. However, you can feel free to use a combination of fresh, tart citrus, or house-made sour mix, critical for drinks like a Tom Collins, which is essentially a single-serving Punch.

Sweet
Woodrich refers to oleo-saccharum, a simple extraction of citrus oils in sugar, as the “ambrosial essence” of Punch. To make an oleo-saccharum, muddle together lemon and orange peels with sugar in a bowl and allow it to sit for at least 30 minutes. Alternates include a bevvy of sweetening liqueurs, like maraschino and curaçao, simple syrups or juices like pineapple.

Strong
Refers to distilled spirits. During Punch’s reign, brandy and rum were common ingredients, along with slightly more obscure spirits, like pisco and arrack. These were frequently used in combination with each other or with table wine and more temperate fortified wines, like Madeira and Port. Additionally, beer or champagne have added a bit of fizz.

Weak
Cocktails receive their necessary dilution by shaking with ice. Punch is usually mixed with enough water, ice or other non-alcoholic mixer, even tea, to render it the approximate strength of wine. This makes it ideal for sipping, unlike the more potent cocktail.

Spice
The most traditional spice for Punches is a garnish of freshly shaved nutmeg. There is an easy tendency to go too strong on spices, so exercise caution.

ENTER YOUR RECIPE*
RECIPE IMAGE (JPG/PNG/GIF UNDER 4 MB)*
EXTRA CREDIT
PART III: EXTRA CREDIT
SHORT ESSAY CHALLENGE: 21ST CENTURY PUNCH IN A CONTEMPORARY BAR PROGRAM
1.

Since it can be prepared in advance, Punch is an excellent solution for busy bar programs, including large groups and catered events. It’s not surprising that Punch has become popular at some of the nation’s best cocktail venues. Please describe the implementation of your 21st Century Punch in paragraph format and consider addressing the following topics.

  • Tell us your drink name, where it lives on the menu and what’s the descriptive sell?

  • Are you keeping with the old tradition of punch being shared communally? What are the serving sizes, price and cost per preparation?

  • Since presentation is everything, how are you serving up your drink? Is it done tableside? What type of glassware, garnishes or floats are you using?

  • Winter, spring, summer or fall? Which season is your punch best suited for, and how are your ingredients bringing that season to life?

  • Bringing your new vodka punch into the 21st century is going to require some skill. Do you foresee any special needs in terms of training, equipment, techniques or customer education?

SUBMIT
PART IV: TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF
FOR BARTENDERS AND FANS OF THE BAR ARTS
If you've completed the Recipe Challenge and taken a stab at the extra credit, all we need now is your contact info and a little about your experience. If you are a bartender or aspiring to make cocktails like the best of them, submit your info for an opportunity to own the Bartenders Dream Library (see Rules) and we'll also consider you a part of the family, with opportunities for more dialogue, insider updates on events and great tips on how to make your cocktails even better. You must be 21 years of age or older to participate.
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