Mad Men Milkshakes: #GreatShakes

 Mad Men Milkshakes: #GreatShakesMAD MEN TOMORROWLAND 52 300x180 Mad Men Milkshakes: #GreatShakesParticipating in Great Shake 2012 (GreatShakes#), a virtual party to celebrate the paperback release of Adam Ried’s sumptuous and original Thoroughly Modern Milkshakes gave us the opportunity to explore a favorite Mad Men food scene: Sally’s spilled milkshake in Season 4, Episode 13, “Tomorrowland.”

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Sally's Spilled Stupendous Strawberry Shake

While Sally and Bobby argue during their California vacation, Sally spills a pink shake. Don is immediately agitated, while Megan, his secretary and soon-to-be wife, takes it all in stride.” “Don’t be upset it’s just a milkshake,” she says calmly to Don, giving him another chance to admire Megan‘s patience with the kids. He proposes in the very next scene. Fortunately for us, Ried put a fantastic  – ok, Stupendous — Strawberry Shake in Thoroughly Modern Milkshakes  — a modern version of a retro classic.

Ried punches up this strawberry shake: there are no strawberries or syrup; strawberry jam and strawberry sorbet infuse this shake with its sensational flavor. It would be something to cry over if spilled. Even Megan would have lost her cool!

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Betty's Sgroppino Al Limone

But if you’re serving a shake at a Mad Men party, it really ought to have booze, no? Ried offers several shakes that qualify as cocktails, such as Chocolate Guiness or Peach with Brandy and Nutmeg. We miss Betty, so we chose another shake with a kick that’s a tribute to Bets, a gal who likes her vodka, modeled in Italy, speaks Italian and looked so elegant and so comfortable when she and Don travelled to Rome (Season 3, Episode 8, “Sourvenir”). It’s the luscious, lemony Sgroppino al Limone, which is technically not a shake because it’s not mixed in the blender. Ice cream is a no-no for Betty who was on the Weight Watchers diet all of Season 5, so this classy lemony cocktail featuring lemon sorbet, vodka and Prosecco is perfetto. Ried suggests serving Sgroppino al Limone before dinner, as a palate cleanser between courses, or for dessert. We agree: this one would go down smoothly and be well received any time.

We couldn’t end there: our shake tour had to include an ode to the Big Apple. Thoroughly

Van Ban Black & White Milkshake
Vanban Mad Men Milkshakes: #GreatShakes

Modern Milkshakes offers a few New York-inspired choices: the Egg Cream and VanBan Black & White shake, a  tribute to the famous New York black and white cookies. The William Greenberg Bakery, mentioned this season in Episode 5 (“Signal 30”), when Don and Megan bring Greenberg brownies to Peter and Trudy’s Cos Cob dinner party, came to mind.

 Mad Men Milkshakes: #GreatShakes

William Greenberg Black & White Cookies

Greenberg’s is also famous for its Black & White Cookies, so the VanBan was on next on our milkshake menu. The Sterling Cooper gang would have swooned over this one — no alcohol, just layers of creamy goodness. Layers of Vanilla (with vanilla extract and a touch of banana) and Chocolate (chocolate ice cream and sorbet). Like the cookie, the shake gives you the chance, according to New Yorker Jerry Seinfeld, to get some black and some white in each bite. “Nothing mixes better than vanilla and chocolate,” said Seinfeld, and this is a shake he would admire.

We love the shakes, but the history and anecdotes about each one, and the mixing and blending tips Ried serves up add even more flavor. There are many more shakes in Ried’s book we’re eager to try with ingredients we never imagined in shakes including herbs, spices and even vegetables!

Join Adam Ried (@modernmilkshake), milkshake fans and participating food bloggers on Twitter for the #GreatShakes party, Monday, June 25 at 8pm EST.

An Old Fashioned Kind of Guy: Mad Men Season 5 Finale

Mad Men Season 5 ended, as Season 1 began, with Don Draper ordering an Old g bites don draper old fashioned kq 120323.photoblog500 300x225 An Old Fashioned Kind of Guy: Mad Men Season 5 FinaleFashioned. The season finale (“The Phantom”) featured only this one cocktail, but it’s Don’s signature drink. We surmise this signals a return to the Don we came to know and, well, love, in a way. It was a different Don this season, happily married, or so it seemed, faithful, except in his dreams, and somehow lighter and brighter than the heavily burdened Don of seasons past. But Don is seeming a bit more old fashioned himself as the series moves into 1967; the world is changing around him, but Don? He’s going backwards.

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The Lipp Sisters with Rich Sommer at Smithfields

One of us (Peter) was in Manhattan last night, and attended the viewing party at Smithfield’s on West 28th Street hosted by Mad Men bloggers extraordinaire (Basket of Kisses), the Lipp Sisters. The special guest was the very genuine and gracious Rich Sommer, known to Mad Men fans as Harry Crane. He stayed to watch the finale which, we suspect, he was watching for the first time along with the rest of us.

Our Season 5 culinary recap (below) includes many highlights —  from orange sherbet at Howard Johnson’s to Megan’s Beef Bourguignon and visits to restaurants, some now gone, some still going, such as Ratner’s Deli, Danny’s Hideaway, Trader Vic’s and The Minetta Tavern.

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Peter and Rich Sommer at the Season 5 Finale Party in New York (photo: Therese Bohn)

It already seems like a long wait for Season 6, so we recommend getting your fix by mixing cocktails and making recipes from The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook, as well as few from this season. Start with Don’s Old Fashioned and, as always, be sure to muddle the cherry.

We’ll be posting occasionally between now and Season 6, but our regular every Monday

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Ratner’s Vegetable Cutlets with Gravy (photo: Nina Gallant)

schedule will resume when Mad Men returns in 2013. Also check our Facebook page and Twitter for news!






Culinary Highlights from Season 5

Where did Don, Roger and the rest of the Sterling Cooper crew dine out or order in from? Season 5 featured Trader Vic’s, Howard Johnson’s, The Hemisphere Club, the Minetta Tavern, Ratner’s, a kosher dairy deli, La Caravelle, The Palm and Danny’s Hideaway among others. Meanwhile, Betty was at Weight Watchers and polishing off Sally’s ice cream sundaes.

And there were a few great parties too: Megan’s 40th birthday bash for Don, Trudy and Pete’s Cos Cob dinner party (the one Don tries to duck without success, but shows up with his memorable drink order “big and brown”) and a traditional Thanksgiving at the Francis manse. A number of recognizable food products from 1966-67 had cameo roles in Season 5, including Cool Whip, Heinz Baked Beans, Bugles, Sno-Balls and White Castle Hamburgers.

An * indicates the recipe is in The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook


Gin Fizz
Shirley Temple
*Old Fashioned

Appetizers, Sandwiches and Side Dishes

Crab Rangoon
Brussel Sprouts
Tuna Fish Sandwich
Heinz Baked Beans
*Deviled Eggs
Bugles Corn Chips
Cheese Cubes

Main Dishes

Boeuf Bourguignon
Dover Sole Meuniere
Ratner’s Vegetable Cutlets with Gravy
Baked Ham
*Beef Wellington
Baked Chicken
White Castle Hamburgers
Howard Johnson’s Fried Clams

Marshmallow Fudge ice cream sundae topping
Minetta Tavern’s Zabaglione
Baked Alaska
Hemisphere Club Mile High Cakes
William Greenberg Brownies
Orange Sherbet
Cool Whip Dessert
Choward’s Violets

Mad Men Meets Manitoga

Given the distressing events of last night’s Mad Men (“Commissions and Fees”), we kind of lost our appetite.

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Giving a tour of ten Mad Men cocktails at Manitoga.

So, as we await the season finale, let’s take a short detour to Garrison, New York, an hour up the Hudson from mid-town Manhattan. Yesterday, we gave a historic tour of ten cocktails featured in Mad Men and The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook to a delightful group of people assembled at Manitoga, the historic home and studio of the mid-century industrial designer Russel Wright. Manitoga/The Russel Wright Design Center is devoted to preserving the

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Russel Wright's home at Manitoga overlooking a quarry is nestled on a wooded hillside.

legacy of the one of the most influential 20th century designers, and words can hardly describe this oasis of serenity and natural beauty nestled on a hillside across the Hudson from West Point. Wright’s home is a modernist wonder that is at one with the surrounding natural environment.

“For more than 40 years beginning in the 1920’s, the industrial designer Russel Wright was to Macy’s and other New York stores what Michael Graves is today to Target and Martha Stewart is to Kmart,” said The New York Times in 2006. “His philosophy — good design is for everyone — spawned a lifestyle movement. Everything manufactured in his name, including dinnerware, furniture and household items, was sophisticated, and all of it was cheap. With a genial smile and marketing genius, he ushered modernism out of the museum and into middle-class suburbia.”

 Mad Men Meets Manitoga

Russel Wright's iconic dishware celebrated simplicity of form and functionality.

Those familiar with Wright’s iconic designs will see evidence of his influence on the sets of Mad Men, including Don and Megan’s Park Avenue apartment.

“Nowhere are the principles that guided Wright’s designs more apparent than in the property in Garrison, N.Y.,” said the Times, “that he made his woodland retreat and christened Manitoga, an Algonquin word translated as Place of the Great Spirit.”

It was a treat for us to visit Manitoga, experience the beauty

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Manitoga's bartender in residence, Russel Wright's grandson, Max.

of the home and surroundings, and even enjoy drinks and lunch, all served on Russel Wright’s glass and ceramic ware.  A special shout-out and thanks to Max, Russel Wright’s grandson, who expertly mixed the Bloody Mary, the Old Fashioned and, appropriately enough, the Algonquin cocktail for guests! Please see our Facebook album for photos of Manitoga and the event.