One of the many gifts I received from my very loving congregation this Christmas is another bartending resource guide – Vintage Spirits & Forgotten Cocktails. Being a Christian, a history buff  and a bartender, I have a natural affinity and desire to connect with those who have gone before me, whom I might benefit from and pass on to those who come after me. It’s this propensity that has launched me into my new theological reading project: The Ante-Nicene Fathers (another delightful Christmas gift from a parishioner!). 

By Paul Nelson

Every Sunday evening we host happy hour for some of the college students and recent college grads in the area. It’s an informal event – as a happy hour should be. We make popcorn, put out chips and crackers and veggies and home-made ranch dressing, slice up some salami and incorporate whatever else we have on hand or someone brings. We spend a few hours just chatting. Sometimes it’s theological. Sometimes it’s personal – helping young people find their way to surer footing after the break-up of a long-term relationship or praying with them as they struggle to find employment options and make decisions for their future. Some of the regulars are very gifted musically, and the guitar(s) come out or the piano tinkles and people are singing. 

By Paul Nelson

I was first introduced to mezcal when I inherited a half-bottle from my best friend who was moving away for work after college. I didn’t really know what it was, but it was cool because there was a worm in the bottom of the bottle.

I haven’t had mezcal in the last 20 years probably, but I happened upon a bottle of it at the local grocery store and picked it up for nostalgic reasons. Then I stumbled across this article in Slate on the burgeoning mezcal industry and figured it was time to do put that bottle to use. 

By Paul Nelson

It’s been another beautiful week here in the American Riviera, but clearly winter is coming.  Temperatures hover in the low 70’s during the day and can dip down into the 40’s at night, all of which puts me in the mood for house slippers and something liquid to drive away the winter chill. Flipping through another of my bartending resources this week, I opted for the classic Brandy Alexander.