FOOD SECTIONAL: In which the New York Times gets it right, and wrong

There’s a great audio slide show dedicated to tiki cocktails here.

Again with the cocktails! Only this time, the focus is kind of genius: It’s the story of Jeff Berry, a California native (! dammit!) who is utterly geeked out (and apparently, utterly serious) about "elevating the lowly reputation of umbrella drinks to their rightful standing" and is the author of “Sippin’ Safari: In Search of the Great "Lost" Tropical Drink Recipes… and the People Behind Them” (from a division of the tiny Slave Labor Graphics Publishing). 

Writer Steven Kurutz calls Berry a "cocktail shamus" and he might deserve the distinction: Did you know that the original tiki master was Ernest Raymond Beaumont-Gantt, who renamed himself Donn Beach and, in 1934, opened Don the Beachcomber’s in Hollywood? And was such an obsessive that he wouldn’t write down drink recipes, but wrote down the formulas in code? Great stuff, and with an audio slide show to boot.

However, as if to prove that the NYT is also capable of pulling a boner: According to Florence Fabricant, Citrus at Social will open in May. Not so, according to the Social Hollywood rep: They’re still aiming for January 15 or thereabouts, the better to coincide with the Oscar season. 


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