SAILING | Braving the sound in wintry weather

sailing gear
Gear you’ll want should you be brave enough to undertake winter sailing, as our newest correspondent, Edward Briganti, has.

Edward Briganti
ejforbes.com Contributing Writer

If you’re a New Yorker (or live anywhere on the eastern seaboard for that matter), you know we’re coming off what’s proved to have been a long winter. As a lifelong sailor, however, I long ago swore off heading out on the water between October and late April unless it was in warmer climes. But after New York’s fourth major snowstorm, I was driven from my cramped, stuffy, over-heated apartment into the outdoors. I have begun “Frostbiting,” as winter sailing in New England is known, on Sundays at Larchmont Yacht Club. It’s amazing how “up” life can look just by spending a few hours in the sun, even if it’s 40 degrees.

On the other side, winter sailing can be a brutally cold and miserable affair — the water is a hypothermic 36 degrees — so cold the floor of the cockpit gets chilly and forms ice inside the boat as you sail; there is more wind and it is shiftier and puffier and more unpredictable than in the summertime — all increasing the dreaded threat of a capsize. The fear of capsizing, however, is what also makes winter sailing so exciting. It’s healthy for the soul to scare the crap out of yourself every now and again. Winter sailing can also be some of the most strategically rewarding and visually appealing sailing there is. The light refracts off the water in a crisper, clearer way and the lack of boat traffic creates smooth waters. When it’s good, there’s often nothing better, so it is critical that outdoor sportsman dress appropriately for the conditions. Below is a summary of the gear I use, love, and recommend. All are based on two key and reinforcing themes: warmth and moisture transfer.

My take on gear is that you pretty much get what you pay for and cheap can be expensive. I take a long-term investment approach to my gear: if you buy the good stuff, it will perform better, longer. While it is recommended that anybody recreating in waters colder than 50 degrees wear a drysuit, it is not mandatory. For the sake of comfort, I use my Gore-Tex and capilene based offshore foul weather gear as my winter sailing attire.

1. Top: Musto MPX Gore-Text Race Smock: My top layer has an active cut, room for layering, articulated elbows and underarms for ease of movement. I like the smooth non-abrasive stretch neck seals with Velcro adjustment, side opening neck with waterproof gusset, and Velcro adjustable neoprene waistband. Side pockets with water resistant zips stash granola bars or a beanie on warm days. The waterproof coating keeps me dry.

2. Bottoms: Musto MPX Offshore Trousers: I lived in these bibs for 4 sultry days in the Gulf Stream on the way to Bermuda during the 2008 Newport Bermuda Race. The 500 denier Cordura seat & knee patches resist abrasion while hiking and moving around the cockpit. There’s plenty of room for layering. The multi-tool sheath stores my Gerber multi-tool. My favorite feature is the 2-way zip, which allows one to relieve oneself over the side without having to derobe.

3. Boots: Shamrock Stretch Boot by Dubarry of Ireland: Cozy feet are happy feet and happy feet make for a good sailor. These boots are gore-tex lined and incredibly comfortable. There’s enough room to fit a Little Hotties toe warmer inside as well. Some people think it’s cool to
wear these boots around town. Don’t. These boots will save your life, so treat those award-winning slip resistant soles with respect and have a pair of sneakers to change into when you’re
back on the dock before you reach the pavement.

4. Lifejacket: Lotus Designs PFD: This was my lifejacket from college sailing. I picked it up on a five-finger discount from the Lost & Found at the yacht club after watching it go unclaimed for an entire summer. The low profile/flak-jacket look is key to keep the things flow. The utility pocket on the front carries your knife, lip balm, granola bar, and beer koozie.

5. Gloves: Atlas Thermal Fit gardening gloves: Yes gardening gloves. Sold individually and preferred by sailors who always seem to lose just one glove. Much cheaper than brand-name sailing-specific gloves, just as warm, and in many cases more functional.

6. Sunglasses: Haber Vision Kenais: A bunch of ex Bollé guys got together and produced a gnarly line of polarized shades at value prices. The full coverage blocks out glare, and the polarized rose-colored lenses allow you to spot that lefty shift coming down the course from 300 yards
away.

7. Hat: Patagonia Beanie: Crews might prefer a thicker wool hat, but as a skipper, I often get warm when I’m in the thick of racing.

8. Fleece Sweater: Patagonia R2 Jacket: This piece will essentially be your mid-layer between your smock and you base underwear. It is super light, super compressible, breathable, and heck, the U.S. Marines even use this jacket (have yet to find the special issue tan and olive drab), it must be good! The softly lined inner collar is where it’s at.

9. Fleece Pants: Patagonia R1 Pant: Similar to the R2 jacket but for your legs. Could get a little warm on the more mild days, if so, drop down to full-length capilene tights.

10. Wicking Undershirt: Patagonia Capilene: No cotton t-shirts in here. We wick and we stay warm and dry. Not much more to say here.

11. Wicking Underwear: Patagonia Active Boxers: The outdoor sportsman can’t have enough pairs of this wicking boxer short.

12. Socks: Patagonia Mid-weight Hiking Socks: If it seems like I’m obsessed with Patagonia, I am. They make good stuff and I believe that pretty much all others are just imitations. In all practicality though, you need a warm sock for frostbiting but it’s important that your sock not be a thick one. In the event you end up in the water and your boots fill up, you need to be able to kick them off easily. While this is an extreme situation, in reality, the Dubarry’s seem to fit better with a thinner sock.

13. Multi-tool: Gerber: The icon on this tool is a sword in a stone. I’ve had this tool since high, school and it has truly been my Excalibur. The quick deploy needle-nose pliers are a big help in clasping cold ring dings and adjusting shroud tension.

14. Knife: Boye Boatknife: A multi-tool AND a knife you say? What for? Well, the Gerber is your toolbox in a sheath for all the nuts, bolts, ring dings, pins, and other misc. hardware on the boat that might require attention. Yes the Gerber has a blade, but every sailor worth his salt knows a knife is really for personal safety. When things get rough and that line needs to be cut to free yourself or your crew from danger, you need a blade that will deploy quickly, cut inch-thick line like butter, and it’s dendritic cobalt so it won’t rust in the saltwater environment. For that you choose Boye.

15. Activated Warmers: Little Hotties:
It might seem like cheating with all this gear to use these little suckers but when it’s cold out, you’ll be glad to have them. Who said you have to suffer and be uncomfortable?! Enjoy some creature comforts and stuff yourself (especially crews) with these activated charcoal warmers.

16. Neck gaiter: Buff Original: Some people like the fleece ski neck gaiter, I prefer the lower profile, climate controlled Buff. The fish scale pattern lets the competition know I’m serious.

GIFTS | The ejforbes.com 2010 holiday list

KnotbeltA beer-themed belt from Knot Belt Co. is among the items in 2010 ejforbes.com holiday gift list.

The holidays — ready or not! — are knocking. It’s time to get shopping. Here’s our second annual selection for just about anyone on your list. This was assembled with the help of contributing writers Will Briganti and Maxwell Eaton III. It’s a bit on the masculine side, but you’ll cope.

Happy shopping.

GreenBlazerDuds and headwear
Bottle-green blazer: The navy blazer, definitely a wardrobe staple, can be complicated by the rarer bottle-green version. For outfitting, we turn to O’Connell, Lucas and Chelf, Buffalo’s iconic men’s store. Their three-button sack model fits the bill. Made in the United States.From $350.

Tab t-shirt: A campus classic for decades that takes its cues from crew teams of yore, this is an essential piece of casual clothing. Naturally, we’ve selected the St. Lawrence model, on offer from the Brewer Bookstore. $16.95.

NewarkBearshatEbbetts Field Flannels ballcaps: Made in the United States — a strong compliment — these flannel ballcaps are a must have, especially as winter starts to show its frosty face. Given our New Jersey roots, we recommend the Newark Bears model. $35.

DaleDale sweater: No clothing item we can think of quite says winter like a Dale of Norway Sweater. De rigeur in all alpine precincts, we’ve selected the U.S. Ski Team issue in honor of Lake Placid’s Andrew Weibrecht, who a bronze in Vancouver. $295 from NorwaySports.com.

Jytte hat: Nordic skiing requires the right gear. We’ve always liked the Jytte (pronounced you-tay) hats procured by the St. Lawrence ski team some years ago, and the Idaho-based firm will set you straight when it comes to headwear. Hand-made in the United States. From $18.

Filson shelter-cloth cap: Lined with wool, this cap comes recommended by ejforbes.com outdoor correspondent Steve Reynolds, a long-time Filson devotee. The water-resistant outer lining sets this cap apart. As appropriate for bird shooting as its for cruises through the urban jungle. Made in the United States. $62.50.

Brooks Brothers dress shirts: That these have been selected will probably not be seen as a surprise or a unique choice by some. It had to be done. Made in the United States — North Carolina, we’re fairly sure — these are essentials. Ed bought three earlier this year and has been suitably impressed to include them here, despite being generally skeptical of the Brothers. You won’t go wrong with the original. $89.50 or three for $199.

Eyewear
REGlassesRandolph Engineering Ranger Classics: Everyone needs good eyewear for sporting-clay excursions. Randolph Engineering delivers with its Ranger Classics, which can be customized with a range of lenses. From $119.95.

Ray-Ban Caravans: For your everyday sunglass needs, nothing beats the Ray-Ban Caravan. Nothing.Modeled on aviator frames that are still standard in most branches of the U.S. Military, these are Ed’s favorite sunglasses barring his grandfather’s Bausch and Lobs. And, for the benefit of our “Mad Men” fans, if they’re good enough for Don Draper, they damn well ought to be good enough for you. $125 from J. Crew.

Outerwear
Patagonia vest: Ed’s never recovered from the loss of his Morristown-Beard ski team vest, which was left by a friend at a Canton watering hole. He took solace for most of college in borrowing Furnary’s instead. A must-have layer. $149.

LiddesdaleShooting vest: We chose Barbour’s very fine model because it offers padding on both shoulders and because we doubt it’ll ever wear out completely. $199 from Orvis.

Barbour Liddesdale: The gold standard for a smart, country-styled coat for the winter. As common on the streets of Manhattan as its Beaufort and Bedale cousins, the Liddesdale is an affordable and stylish alternative. It’s also pretty cozy, which we’ll take. $149 at Orvis.

Henri Lloyd’s Breeze Performance Jacket: Contributing ejforbes.com writer Will Briganti writes, “This is my best purchase of 2010 this far.” An avid sailor, Briganti’s word is bond on this choice. Versatile for coastal and urban activities. $69.

Footwear
MinnetonkaMocsMinnetonka Driving Moccasin: In Dark Brown – perfect for the ski lodge or casual Fridays at the office. Invest in only one pair, the more worn in, the better. $56.95 from Holly Woodworking of Old Forge, N.Y.

Justin Ropers: As appropriate for a day on the farm as they are in any situation where dress shoes aren’t required. The basic cowboy boot from Justin is a staple we can’t deny. From $99.

Bean boot: More than one pair (one being the shorter moc-version) is essential to make it through the mud, rain and snow. We like the new, shearling-lined model. Made in Maine as always. From $149.

Vasque Sundowners: Essential for any long trips in the woods. $170.

Accessories and housewares
GouchoBeltArgentinian polo belt: One snappily dressed reader is never without his. These are downright swell and are apparently standard on the polo fields of Argentina. In regimental and school colors from Gaucho Belts. $51.

Nantucket red socks: The genuine article, only for your feet. From Murray’s, the Island’s primary haberdashery. $17.50.

Billykirk and ACL & Co. canvas briefcase: A collaboration between A Continuous Lean.’s Michael Williams and Billykirk, this olive-drab canvas case is based on a World War II bag issued by the U.S. Navy. Made in the United States. $325.

Vice holster: This Etsy item caught my eye a few weeks ago. A holster that will hold a flask, a phone or a pack of smokes, it’s the perfect hideaway for your vices be they booze, texting or tobacco. On offer from Four Chamber Forge. $95.

Smathers and Branson flaskNeedlepoint flask: Rare is the time when a tipple isn’t welcome. Indulge in style with this needlepoint-covered numbers from Smathers and Branson. Customizable with monograms, too. From $65.

Cordial Churchman velvet bow tie: We picked the rust-colored option from the Cordial Churchman, the charming bow tie emporium run by Ellie LaVeer Stager. Made of 100-percent cotton velveteen, the tie is presented in the traditional butterfly pattern. Charming. $26.

Knot beer belt: Knot Belt Co.’s belts are simply charming and this fall’s beer-bottle is now exception to that rule. Made in the U.S.A. by a Laurentian, Nick Mannella. $55.

J. Press braces: When it comes to dressing somewhat professionally, do a little growing up and embrace braces. J. Press has a versatile offering from which to choose. Keep it conservative. $59.25.

Housewares and other gear
Chip and dip: One of Mrs. F.’s favorite pieces of serving wear is a glass chip-and-dip engraved with a Buffalo. It comes from Pitt Petri the venerable purveyor of all things proper in Buffalo, N.Y. These also come monogrammed. From $84.

whiskeystonesWhiskey stones: It’s frustrating, to say the least, when good whisky is diluted by the ice that chills it. Whiskey Stones to the rescue. Handcrafted from Vermont soapstone, this set of nine, properly chilled for four hours in a freezer, offers the right temperature and the right consistency for the holy water. $19.99.

New York in a Bag: A charming set of building blocks fashioned to resemble such architectural New York city icons as the Chrysler Building, the Guggenheim and MoMA’s original 1939 structure. From the MoMA store at $19.99.

Cocktail coupes: Exploring Westchester County’s Rivertowns — Ossining, Sleepy Hollow, Tarrytown, Irvington, Dobbs Ferry — this summer, we happened upon a very nice rummage sale at the Presbyterian Church in Dobbs Ferry. Lots of take could have been had, but we settled on a nice little set of vintage coupe glasses. For $2, they were a bargain. You can shell out a bit more at CB2 for adequate stand-ins. $5.95 each.

Olivewood cheese server: There’s no denying it. Ed and Mrs. F. have yet to find a piece of artisanal cheese they couldn’t palate. They often enjoy their curd on this olivewood cheese server from Williams-Sonoma, a gift from Mrs. F.’s grandmother. $59.

Cast iron grill: While we love Weber’s Smokey Joe, it pales in comparison to this hearty cast-iron offering from Lodge Cast Iron Cookware. Made with pride in the great southern state of Tennessee. $139.95.

Stanley Thermos: For the early morning call when you’re hitting the trail, the slopes or the road, keep your caffeinated fuel warm with this Stanley thermos, an undeniable American classic. My grandfather used one and so, too, should you. $48 from Urban Outfitters.

Books and stationery
Colonel Roosevelt“Colonel Roosevelt”: Edmund Morris’ third volume in his epic biography of Theodore Roosevelt. It’s worth re-reading “The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt,” (1979) and “Theodore Rex,” (2001) in anticipation. Morris looks at the last chapters of the 26th president of the United States. From $19.25 at Amazon.com.

“40: A Doonesbury Retrospective”: It wouldn’t be an ejforbes.com gift list with out a coffee-table book. Take home this one for the reader in your life. A 40-year retrospective of Doonesbury, the iconic strip by Saranac Lake’s own Garry Trudeau. From $59 at Amazon.com.

“Coming home to Glory”: David Eisenhower’s memoir of life with his father Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, the 34th president of the United States. A must for every baby-boomer father. From $18.48 from Amazon.com.

Moleskine notebooks: For writing, for jotting, for doodling. Can’t get enough of these tough little buggers. Made in Italy. $9.95 for a set of three from the MoMA store.

BELTS | Coming soon to a Brewer Bookstore near you

ScarletandBrownBeltKnot Belt Co.’s Scarlet and Brown belt, created exclusively for the St. Lawrence University Alumni Executive Council’s SaintsWear line.

As many readers now, I have the privilege of serving as secretary of the St. Lawrence Alumni Executive Council, the 40-member governing body of the University’s Alumni Association.

The Council, which funds a range of programs for current St. Lawrence students and supports activities for alumni, raises funds through an affinity credit card and SaintsWear, a growing line of Scarlet and Brown clothing and accessories. SaintsWear is sold via the Brewer Bookstore, St. Lawrence’s college store.

The newest addition to the line — which already includes a Barbarian rugby shirt, Louis Garneau cycling jerseys, SmartTurnout socks and accessories from Sara Langley — is a belt designed by this writer and Nick Mannella, proprietor of Knot Belt Co.

You may remember Mannella — we did a profile interview last fall. Nick is also a Laurentian and graduated from St. Lawrence in 2006.

The belt features four St. Lawrence motifs: An Adirondack chair, evergreens, the University shield and the clocktower of Sykes Residence Hall.

It will retail at $38 and should be available online later this month. In the meantime, you can order your belt directly from Knot.

Note: The classic St. Lawrence Leather Man Ltd. belt is not being discontinued.

GEAR | Barbour Beaufort, back from the near-dead

BarbourCollar
The collar of my newly-restored Barbour Beaufort.

Late last year, I wrote about an aging Barbour Beaufort I received as a hand-me-down from my good friend Carl, who disposed of it in the process of moving from New York to Tennessee, where he is pursuing a medical degree.

A navy-blue Beaufort, it had not been reconditioned in years and had a number of small holes on its sleeves. I wondered if I should take a page from Trip Reed, who’d written about reconditioning one of his coats. In the end, which was only in August, I elected to dispatch the coat to Ken and Catherine Bissonette, who operate Green Mountain Reproofing in Vermont.

For about $40, the coat was returned in pristine condition. I had it back within a fortnight of sending it. I strongly recommend Green Mountain Reproofing. Take a look at some before-and-after shots:

BEFORE:
BarbourOld

AFTER:
BarbourNew

GEAR | 72-quart Igloo Marine keeps ‘em cold

IglooThe 72-quart marine cooler from Igloo comes highly recommended.

Jamie Welsh, the sometime ejforbes.com contributor whose North Country exploits never fail to entertain or even amaze, was recently in the market for a cooler. He needed something that could handle serious hauls — his girlfriend, Catherine, is living on Nantucket for the summer and requires fresh supplies of North Country delicacies whenever he visits.

He turned to Igloo, the Katy, Texas-based manufacturer. A devoted fisherman, Welsh focused on the widely admired and extremely durable marine line and selected a 72-quart model. Specially built for use on and near the water, Igloo’s marine line features UV inhibitors and a fish ruler and is both stain and odor resistant.

Welsh tells me the 72-quart model can hold as many as 114 beverage cans and, when fully loaded, it requires two men to be moved. He anticipates having his model for years.

From $113 at igloo-store.com

GEAR | Light your Weber with Rapidfire

Weber RapidfireWeber’s Rapidfire Chimney starter is a must for any devotee of charcoal grilling aficionado.

The Rapidfire Chimney starter is a weapon that’s essential for any devotee of charcoal grilling. Though I’ve been a Weber man since high school, I was not introduced to the Rapidfire until I started dating Mrs. F. Her father is a huge fan and, after I loaned him my grill one summer in Lake Placid, he returned the favor by buying me a Rapidfire.

I was reminded of these on two occasions in recent days: I was at a barbecue last week and the very gracious hostess asked me to stand in for her boyfriend and get the Weber lit. Supplied with some Kingsford, a few old copies of the Wall Street Journal and the Rapidfire, I set to work. The trick, I find, is not to use too much newspaper. One or two pieces of broadsheet, crumpled and set at the Rapidfire’s base, will do.

The second reminder came in the form of a Father’s Day gift list from Red Clay Soul, a blog you should definitely check out if you haven’t already.

The Rapidfire is on offer for $17.99 directly from weber.com.

GEAR | Olivetti Lettera 32 typewriter endures

Olivetti Lettera 32The Olivetti Lettera 32, a classic typewriter favored by the likes of Cormac McCarthy, Leonard Cohen and others.

Maxwell E. Eaton III
ejforbes.com Contributing Writer

My gradual descent into Luddite lunacy led me — ironically — to craigslist last week where I sought and secured this incredible piece of mid-century engineering. The portable Lettera 32 typewriter was designed by Italian draughtsman and architect, Marcello Nizzoli, for Olivetti in 1963 with a focus on ergonomics and ease of use. Popular with students, journalists and travelers for its relatively compact nature, this bundle of levers continues to be the tool of choice for notables like Cormac McCarthy and Leonard Cohen (who, as legend has it, cast this typewriter into the Aegean Sea after finishing his novel, “Beautiful Losers”). The Lettera 32 also boasts some of the lightest and tightest typing action available on a manual typewriter.

I picked this particular machine up for a modest $30 (not exactly a steal, but also a far cry from the $300+ that this workhorse often goes for). After looking up the serial number I determined that it was manufactured in Barcelona around 1969. Decades of methodical neglect, however, found the keys stuck and the ribbon dry, but these problems were quickly remedied with a little WD-40, a few drops of oil, and a purchase from mytypewriter.com. It’s now in perfect running order and the new ribbon should be here within the week. In the meantime, I’ll be looking forward to some back-porch, cold-drink typing as my closet of seemingly ancient laptops weep in fear and loathing at their own obsolescence.

Take a closer look:

FIND | Degenerate America serves up terrific kitsch

SnackthingerThese stackable snack dishes are on offer at America Degenerate, an Etsy boutique that deals in the best of midcentury kitsch.

Are you thinking of remaking your place a la Elizabeth Hofstadt Draper? In search of the perfect retro cheese-serving set? Or are you in the market for a boating guide geared for women?

Then grope through the dark caverns of online auction sites no further and turn to America Degenerate, an Etsy boutique run by dear friends Elizabeth Lawrence and Warner Boutin.

The couple, who make their home in Los Angeles, operate America Degenerate as a hobby while they pursue their real passion: documentary filmmaking. Their first effort, “Roll Out Cowboy,” is doing quite well on the film-festival circuit, but that’s for another post. For now, we focus on the shop, which includes such wondeful items as frosted cocktail glasses painted with little sailboats,
and 1980s cheese sets.

I asked Warner and Betty a few questions about their business in a recent e-mail exchange. Here’s the best of it.

Q: What guides your aesthetic?

EL: The trash. Just kidding. But we do live by the philosophy one man’s junk is another man’s treasure. We scour goodwill stores, garage sales, estate sales and occasionally the dumpster. These items have been deemed “trash” or “unwanted” by their past owners. We pick them up and find new homes. I can’t explain the joy I feel when someone writes us an appreciation e-mail about how long they’ve been looking for a ceramic fish plaque. Through America Degenerate, their wish turns into a reality.

Q: And how would you define that aesthetic?

EL: [We deal chiefly] in 1950s-1980s retro kitsch for the home.

Q: Where do you find your inventory?

WB: All around L.A. and the depths of the Valley (commonly referred to region immediately north of Hollywood – San Fernando Valley)

Q: What kind of items do you leave behind?

EL: Clear glass is hard to photograph … anything newer than 1990.

Q: Is it tempting to keep some of this stuff for yourselves? I’m sure you do, but I know that when I go thrifting, I find things I’d have a hard time parting with.

EL: Not to be cheesy, but we live by our store’s aesthetic. Our living room looks like a 1960s den and we love it! The chipped pink dressers were about to be dumped until I salvaged them a couple years ago (family member’s move). We don’t buy anything we wouldn’t keep for ourselves. Does that lead to a cluttered mess? Sure! But there is never a lack of conversation when friends visit. We even sold a crock pot off the dinner table. THAT is mealin’ and dealin’.

Q: Do you have thrifting tips you’d share with fellow miners?

WB: Work within a budget. Set a cap on your weekend good-will thrifting. Otherwise, you’ll fill the apartment to the ceiling with junk; which we’ve nearly done. The idea is to supplement your income, not become a hoarder. It’s a thin line!

EL: Inspect the items carefully before committing to buy. Look for cracks in glassware, sticker marks on leather purse, stains on clothes. And Warner is right: Avoid hoarding.

Q: Future plans for the brand?

EL: Besides used wares, we also make handmade America Degenerate items. In the past, items have included stationery, baby bibs, dog sweaters. The main themes of these items are Warner’s cartoon artwork. In the future, we hope to produce more of these handmade products. Expanding to items such as clothing, zines and animations.

America Degenerate, an Etsy Boutique

GEAR| Julep cups are a must today and all summer

Julep cupThese julep cups from Reed and Barton are American classics.

Derby Day is here. We’re already heading down to the city for our 12th annual Debry Day party chez Furnary.

Mrs. F. spent some time last night working on her simple syrup and we’re going to be stopping at our fish monger for the requisite crushed ice. We’re having a bit of a debate about what kind of bourbon to deploy. Thrifty Mrs. F. is for using Early Times, the official bourbon in use this weekend at Churchill Downs. Either way, our julep cups will travel with us.

Nothing’s more American, frankly, than drinking the very traditional mint julep from a silver tumbler. Though you won’t have them in time for today, julep season, as far as I’m concerned, lasts all summer. Beautiful examples are available from Reed and Barton. From $55

GEAR| OXO mini-measure is now your go-to jigger

OXO miniOXO’s mini measure makes for an affordable — and, more importantly, exacting — jigger for all your cocktails.

While warmer weather generally prompts desires for cocktails that rely on tonic and soda, there are lots of recipes on my list that will benefit greatly from the brilliant OXO Mini Measure. It’s a terrific little jigger that helps you pour very precise amounts of booze into your drinks.

I know I’m late to get on this train — we only just obtained ours a few weeks ago — as many, many cocktail aficionados have sworn by these for years. That doesn’t make it any less valuable or useful though. Using this jigger, I’ve noticed that my Pegu Clubs are all the tastier when constructed with the proper measurements. As I work my through Charles Baker, I realize how precise he is with his jiggers of this and that.

In total, the mini measure holds 2 ounces. One deficiency is that it doesn’t feature a hash mark for 3/4 of an ounce. But the price is certainly right. We picked ours up for $3.95.

$3.95 from Crate and Barrel

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