I’d like to introduce a new and hopefully recurring feature on this blog- a section I’d like to call “cocktails with Helen”

Helen is my 89 year old godmother and easily one of my favorite people on the planet. Every afternoon around five Helen has one glass of scotch that usually, with multiple applications of ice lasts her until she goes to sleep four or more hours later. She prefers Speyside single malt but for reasons of economy often subsists on a much cheaper blended version.

I like to drink myself and admittedly prefer high end cocktails, the kind with multiple obscure ingredients. I’ve been known to dork out over these sort of things. I love a shrub,I once guessed the secret ingredient of a signature cocktail at a New Orleans institution(it was Velvet Falernum…ssshhhh…), I have been known to explain how to make a cocktail to an ignorant bartender ( I know this makes me an asshole, forgive me). So it fascinates me, Helen’s loyalty to Scotch, in such a uniform presentation and manner. Hence I thought maybe I could find something she’d like better. Something worth a break in her routine. So the plan is- I will make a cocktail- Helen will taste it. We’ll film the results.

This first one is dedicated to my friend Amie Segal, since it’s her stand by and I think of her whenever I drink one. The Dirty Martini. Enjoy.