AlcoHOLidays | National Mustard Day | Pretzel Dip



To presume that National Mustard Day was a promotional effort instigated by one of the many mustard producers (or Big Mustard?) wouldn’t be out of the realm of possibility but, as near as I can tell, it wouldn’t be true, either! Apparently National Mustard Day, celebrated on the first Saturday of August, is the product of the National Mustard Museum, currently located in Middleston, Wisconsin, and houses over 5,500 mustards and various mustard memorabilia.

Barry Levenson founded the Mustard Museum while he was still the Assistant Attorney General of Wisconsin and 6 years later changed careers to run the museum full time. The Mustard Museum was been the sponsor of National Mustard Day since 1991.

Now, mustard can be sweet. My favorite used to be this raspberry honey mustard I first had at a wine tasting. Just amazing! Of course, just your usual run of the mill honey mustard is pretty tasty, too, but these days I gravitate more towards Dijon and Creole mustards, the grainier the better. Mustard is part of the holy trinity of my mom’s ham glaze (brown sugar, orange juice, and the aforementioned mustard), pretzels and hotdogs would be lost without it, and the powdered variety is wonderful to cook with (then again, so is the prepared variety).

So the challenge was to create a cocktail based on this “King of Condiments.”

Pretzel Dip

2 oz London Dry Gin
1 oz Beer
1/2 oz (or 1 Tbsp) Dijon Mustard

Combine ingredients over ice and shake until nice and frothy. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with a mini gherkin or kosher dill pickle, whichever you best prefer.

You could even go more elaborate with your garnish and skewer a cocktail wiener or some deli meat with an olive. Or, hey, if you’ve got some pretzel bread handy, go for it!

I don’t think I have to point out that this is not a sweet cocktail. This is very much along the lines of a dirty martini with the added boost of the emulsifying property of the mustard. The mustard and gin go so well together than I’m seriously considering using gin instead of vinegar in my next vinaigrette, and the beer gives the cocktail a bright finish–though the exact tone will change depending on what beer you have on hand.

MxMo LIX: Beer Cocktails and a Return of the Glazed Doughnut


Glazed Doughnut Cocktail and Props

Ever since I started cocktail-blogging I’ve meant to participate in the Mixology Monday meme but always remembered too late. This time I was smart and actually put it on my calendar as one of my to-dos for today.

It also helps that this MxMo theme, hosted by Frederic of Cocktail Virgin Slut is cocktails made with beer. If you followed my 50 Shots of America series you know that I’ve made quite a few beer cocktails over the last year and a bit, some tastier than others, but none better than the first one, in honor of North Carolina and the Krispy Kreme doughnut that began there.

The Glazed Doughnut

2 oz Honey Wheat beer*
1 oz Sweetened Condensed Milk
1/2 oz Butterscotch Schnapps
1/4 oz Vanilla Vodka

Combine over ice in a sturdy mixing glass and shake as if the fryer’s broken and the pre-church crowd is about to descend. Strain into 2 small cordial glasses (or 1 martini glass) and steel yourself for the oncoming rush.

Shortly after creating this cocktail I was at the rehearsal dinner for my brother’s wedding and explaining some of what I do to my beer-connoisseur of an aunt. When I said I’d made a fabulous cocktail out of beer the look on her face could not have been more disbelieving. Once I explained about the need for that yeasty flavor in certain drinks and the only good way of getting it being beer, even she agreed that it made sense and even sounded pretty doggone good! The fact that the original recipe for Krispy Kreme doughnuts is said to have been purchased from a pastry chef from New Orleans, and we’re from that area of Louisiana, well, let’s just say our love for those pillowy breakfast confections is no longer a mystery.

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I’m happy to report that this cocktail still makes me do a little happy dance and is still the perfect remedy to a late-night doughnut craving when you can’t quite justify heading to the doughnut drive-thru in your pajamas.