DIY Cocktail Hour: Gold Dust Woman Martini

Tito’s Handmade Vodka started something with its notion of taking the distilling of vodka as a serious art in this country. It has been my workhorse vodka for years and will remain one of my favorites unless they change the recipe or start making prissy flavors like “angel food cake” or “cool whhip.”

There are now a plethora of artesinal vodkas that are organic, distilled over charcoal in artesinal springs with dancing nymphs and Romans eating grapes. With Portland 88, Crater Lake and House of Spirits Volstead Vodka, the Portland area certainly has more than its fair share of purified and crystalline vodkas. But this week when I went to Austin on vacation, I wanted to see how the locals stacked up.


At the liquor store down the street from the ranch that was my vacation home– yep, you got it, a ranch. (No cows but a salt water pool and about a billion stars at night). I found several Austin craft distilled vodkas. I went with Dripping Springs because it had received some convincing accolades. The label doesn’t do it justice. It is a ten times filtered vodka from the water of an artesinal spring. Beautifully alcoholic and clear it has the resonance of crystal. Don’t let the label fool you, it’s not fake crystal. This can’t go through the dishwasher.

With the elegance and decadence of the vodka as a starting point, I created the following cocktail:

Gold Dust Woman

Gold Dust Woman

Gold Dust Woman:

5 oz Dripping Springs Vodka
1 1/2 oz mango pulp
1/2 oz Headsnapper Sauvignon Blanc

Fill martini glass with sparkling water and ice cubes
Fill shaker with ice
Add vodka, mango pulp and sauvignon blanc
Shake, shake shake until the shaker is frosty and sticks to your hand
Empty martini glass, rinse with 1/2 oz of sauvignon blanc
Partially rim with white sugar
Strain drink into glass 7 oz glass (It’s Texas, it has to be big)
Garnish with giant, freshly picked Texas strawberry

To Pick On: (Cuz Gold Dust Women Don’t Really EAT)
Tex-Mex Strawberry Salad

2 Shredded romaine hearts
1 cup juillienned jicama
1/2 cup sliced strawberries
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1/2 cup black beans
1/2 cup tortilla strips

1 small fresh red chili pepper, seeded and minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsps agave syrup
1/3 cup pack fresh chopped mint
1/2 cup squeezed lime juice
1 tbsp liquid coconut oil
1/3 cup EVOO
2 tbsps white wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste

Dress salad in bowl, chill if desired and dish up into four dishes.

Best Use: Chillin’ by the pool waiting for your toenails to dry, sparkled gold over violet

Reading Materials:
 Maya’s Notebook, Isabelle Allende

Soundtrack: Duh, Gold Dust Woman… this version


Tuaca Oatmeal Cookies…directly from heaven (can be gluten free and vegan!)

zen cookie

from the folks at

This has nothing to do with booze except for the fact that if you make them, you might want to hide them so that drunk you doesn’t eat a whole batch. As it is, you might want to put them in a time-locked capsule that will only allow you to open it every 12 hours and remove one cookie. Not like I’m the cookie police.

Oh, and the Tuaca. Who needs vanilla extract when there is Tuaca in the world.


1 1/2 Cup Trader Joes Gluten-Free Oats (uncooked) or other oats if you don’t worry about such things
1 1/2 Cup GF all purpose flour (again, regular flour is ok too)
Couple shakes cinnamon, maybe some nutmeg
Half a shot of  Tuaca (if you don’t have Tuaca, vanilla extract will have to do).
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 pinch sea salt
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup coconut oil (I love coconut oil in baking, it’s so moist and sticky it’s easy not to use eggs)
1 egg if you think it’s necessary
A small banana would be nice, well ripened. If you are not using the egg, definitely use the banana but you can use both.

Mix ingredients. If you decide not to use the egg, you can totally eat the cookie dough to your heart’s delight but the raw oats may prove to be an obstacle. Anyway, I eat some of it. A little cookie dough, a little nip of Tuaca. Make them as big as you want, just remember the time-locked capsule principle. If you make them pancake size and eat 2 of them, that’s on you buster. Bake at 375 for about 10 minutes and you’re golden. You probably want to leave them sit for about five minutes so they don’t fall apart but you may not be able to wait that long.