May 31, 2007
There are two sides to every party - the folks who want to have some beers, and the folks who want to have some something else, whether it be sangria, cocktails, whatever. In the past, never the two would meet, with the beer drinkers congregated around the cooler and the others around the punchbowl or pitcher. The brilliant folks at Margaritaville have discovered a brilliant way to bring unity to your party by creating the Tub-N-Tap Party Cooler.
What is this monument of genius, you ask? It offers a 4 liter insulated bin, accessible by tap, for your favorite bevvy on the bottom; on top is a tray that will hold 40 beers and copious ice. We love it when a plan comes together.
Margaritaville Tub-N-Tap Party Cooler[via Uncrate]
May 30, 2007
We don't spend much time reading our horoscope anymore. We've found if we want bland, overly generalized advice with little practical use, we'll watch Dr. Phil. One thing that's picked up our interest in all things horoscopical (we know - that's not a word), however, is Zodiac Vodka, a high end potato spirit made right here in the states.
Does Zodiac live up to its astrological trappings? Read on to find out.
Continue reading: "Zodiac Vodka Review"
May 29, 2007
We have recently gotten our hands on a whole passel of free tickets to VodkaFest with Gin in NYC in June, and instead of scalping them on the streetcorner we're going to pass those savings on to you, our beloved readers. These VIP tickets are usually $60 each at the door, and we're giving them away in pairs to the first folks who email us at news [at] liquorsnob.com.
Update: The free tix to VodkaFest were snapped up almost as quickly as we posted them. Guess that's what we call a "snooze you lose" situation, but we'll let you know if there's anything else we can do for you.
Whether you get free tickets or not, don't miss out on your chance to hob nob with vodka and gin luminaries from the world over (including our man Dave at Orange V), plus hang out with our Editor in Chief, who will be attending the event. The 'Fest is in a couple weekends (Sunday, June 10), and should be a great time. Check out the link below for more details, or email us if you need anything else.
The Polished Palate - VodkaFest (with Gin)
May 29, 2007
We found this shirt over at Threadless over the weekend, and placed our order immediately. It reminds us of the first time we reviewed absinthe and got a bit, well, over-exuberant, and makes us happy about our new sense of responsibility with a powerful liquor. Now you too can wear your love of delirium on your sleeve (well, your chest really) for the next time you transact with the fairy.
Threadless - The Green Fairy
May 24, 2007
We've already called 2007 as the year Cachaca will take the U.S. by storm, and the bottle of Agua Luca we've got sitting here in front of us is one of the contenders hoping to do so. Marketed as an ultra-premium label, Agua Luca is coming straight from Brazil to your glass - and being filtered 12 times in between.
Read on to find out how Agua Luca measures up to our demanding requirements for whipping up Caipirinhas.
Continue reading: "Agua Luca Cachaca Review"
May 23, 2007
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A list of 100 beers, most of which we've never heard of before. That's something we can get behind, and we now have a "to do" list for 2007 - it's nice to have a purpose.
Find the link to the list, along with some thoughts on the list from our pals over at The Sporting Life, after the jump. As a bonus, also check out the list of all craft breweries that were open as of the end of 2006, which was mailed to us by the fine folks over at Buzzard's Bay Brewing. Between the two lists, hopefully you'll find that magical brew that encourages you to quit your job and become a full-time drinker.
Continue reading: "Beer Advocate Top 100 List"
May 22, 2007
We know we've been a bit lax in our reviewing schedule lately - we've already got a backlog and more booze just keeps flowing in. We've put together a list of the new booze we've received in recent days - we'll tell those lazy interns to stop slacking off and keep up with their reviewing duties.
Zodiac Vodka - We covered this stuff a little while back and we've gotten our review bottle in along with 12 shot glasses marked with each sign of the zodiac...see the connection? Not a bad bit of marketing.
Reyka Vodka - Touted as Iceland's only vodka, we're looking forward to getting our tastebuds wrapped around this one, if only to see if it lives up to our initial expectation that it tastes like Iceland.
Whitley Neill Gin - We've heard some damn good things about this gin (check out the review at Tastings.com), so expect us to bump this London Dry to the top of the queue.
Torque Energy Drink - We got our Torque cans in a couple weeks ago and they had us pinging around the office like methed-up hummingbirds. Expect the review soon.
May 21, 2007
We're immense Absinthe fans here in the Liquor Snob offices, but one of the problems has long been the inability to get it easily here in the States. For those of you who've been living under a rock for the last century or so, traditional Absinthe is illegal here in the U.S. and has been for quite a long time.
We've just gotten word, however, that Ted Breaux, the maverick behind Nouvelle Orleans, Verte Suisse, and Perique tobacco liqueur, is has gotten approval to release a new Absinthe called lucid here in the U.S.
We're pretty sure he was able to do it by keeping thujone, the reputedly psychoactive element in absinthe, out of the mix, but whatever it took, we applaud him. From what we've read on the lucid site it's very much a traditional French distillation, and with it clocking in at 124 proof (62% ABV) you won't miss the thujone. lucid retails for about $60, and is currently available in New York - which should make it much easier to get your hands on than its European brethren.
Read on for a snippet about lucid from the company website, and we'll keep you posted if we can get our hands on any to try it out; you can get your own bottle at Internet Wines & Spirits if you can't find it locally.
Continue reading: "Lucid Absinthe: Available in the U.S.A."
May 17, 2007
Back when we first found out about Zyr Vodka, we were pleasantly intrigued by their ballsy claim to be the best Russian vodka ever. There's nothing wrong with a little hubris when you're marketing a product, and we like how they went right for the top. Of course, when you make a claim like that you have to have some pretty serious chops, right?
Just think - in so many people's minds, Russia is the home of vodka. Hence, saying you're the best Russian vodka ever is some pretty heady stuff. Zyr relies on their 9:5:3 ratio (nine filtrations, five distillations, three tastings) for every batch to get to the level of quality they're trying to achieve.
Does Zyr live up to our drastically inflated hopes? Read on to find out.
Continue reading: "Zyr Vodka Review"
May 16, 2007
Don't look now, but there's another flavored vodka coming down the 'Pike. It's called Smirnoff Blueberry Flavored Vodka, and you guessed it, it's flavored like meat loaf. Just kidding - it's flavored with blueberries. We're very much interested in checking out how this one tastes - and let's just say we're interested in what kinds of cocktails you can make with the fruit we most associate with Maine. They call Maine Vacationland...and summer is the time of vacations. Based on this, we think we can safely say Smirnoff Blueberry might be the drink of the summer. Either that, or we need to lay off the word associations.
Read on for the press release including a cocktail recipe for the Blueberry Martini, and expect to see Smirnoff Blueberry in the next few weeks.
Continue reading: "Smirnoff Blueberry Vodka"
May 15, 2007
We've always liked Bourbon for a lot of reasons, not the least of which is the fact that it doesn't have the hoity toity vibe people often attribute to things like Scotch. While there are some definite high end Bourbons that'll set you back a good chunk of your rent money, we've always liked the Good Ole Boy aspects of a quintessentially Southern drink.
80 Strong, the latest Bourbon we've gotten our paws on lives right up to that expectation, and it's got the hot-looking pinup girl on the label to prove it. Read on to find out if the flavor lives up to the packaging.
Continue reading: "80 Strong Bourbon Review"
May 14, 2007
This might come as a big surprise to most of you, but we're not huge health nuts here in the Liquor Snob offices. It's not that we don't care - it's just that every time we drink a smoothie we think it'd taste better spiked with rum, and we don't know a fruit cup from a free radical - you're better off looking for that stuff from our sister site, Really Natural. That's not to say we're not interested in organics, however - especially when they're in the form of tequila.
Introducing 4 Copas Tequila, the world's very first certified organic tequila. It's available in Blanco, Reposado, and Anejo, and while we don't have any tasting notes yet, but it won 2006 Tequila of the year from Wine & Spirits Magazine. Sounds good to us...too bad it's currently only available for purchase in AZ, CA, and HI. If you can't make the pilgrimage, buy it online at Internet Wines and Spirits (Reposado, Anejo, Blanco).
May 10, 2007
The juicer is a crucial, but often overlooked element of the proper home bar. With so many delicious cocktails calling for freshly-squeezed juice, you don't want to skimp and get one of those little "bowl with a juicer in it" things, so the first impulse is often to buy one of those fancy-schmancy electric juicers the kids are always talking about (those kids and their electricity). Here's one thing you're forgetting if you do that, however - how are you going to make juice if the power goes out? Let's face it, power outages are the best times to drink because, well...there's nothing else to do.
That's where this Hamilton Beach manual juicer comes in. You're not married to the concept of electricity because of the sweet lever action, and you're also not hunched over doing the mash and twist for two hours with a bag of limes. Seems like the best of all worlds to us.
Amazon - Hamilton Beach Commercial 932 Manual Juicer
May 9, 2007
OK, we're calling it - Cachaca is going to be the hot "new" liquor this summer, and the caipirinha is going to be to 2007 like the Mojito was to 2006. Expect to see bigger brands coming out with Cachacas moving forward.
Just call it a hunch. Well, that and we're already seeing it happen. Heaven Hill is going to be the first big name to distribute Cachaca, with an offering called Agua Luca. It'll be interesting to see how the liquor fares with the possible new limelight, considering up until now it's been considered a lesser-known bastard cousin of rum (at least in the States). All we know is Cachaca has a hardcore following and the caipirinha damn near tops our list of favorite drinks.
We've just gotten our bottle of Agua Luca, so you can expect a full review soon to find out if this stuff can go toe to toe with some of our artisinal favorites.
Continue reading: "Agua Luca Cachaca from Heaven Hill"
May 8, 2007
We're always up for a good David vs Goliath story, and we've just heard about one in the vodka world that piqued our interest a bit. Apparently Zodiac Vodka is getting ready to mix it up with Moet Hennessy, the folks behind Chopin. We're not sure how serious it is - they're upset because Chopin calls itself the only luxury potato vodka in the world, but hey...more power to 'em. Worst case it gets them a little press, right?
Actually, we think it's interesting Zodiac's been marketing themselves as a luxury spud vodka for almost 10 years, and now the bigger guy's trying to steal the word. Nuff said - we like Chopin but we're siding with the little guy.
Continue reading: "Zodiac Vodka vs Chopin"
May 7, 2007
We got an email the other day with the subject line "Best Russian Vodka Ever." Now, that's a bold claim - we've had a lot of good Vodka, and we've had a lot of good Russian Vodka, so we were immediately interested in what product might elicit that kind of bravado. Turns out, it's a relative newcomer to the Vodka block called ZYR, and based on the info they sent us, they might just be onto something:
ZYR vodka is imported from Russia, but the man who masterminded it is a Jersey Boy. David Katz uses a patented "9•5•3" process: The water, drawn from 460 feet below Russia's heartland, is filtered nine times; the fermented blend of winter wheat and rye is distilled five times; and the vodka is taste-tested three times, to ensure its velvety smoothness ($33; www.zyrvodka.com)
9•5•3, eh? It might not replace 36-24-36 in the popular vernacular, but we'll give it a shot.
May 4, 2007
Tomorrow's Cinquo de Mayo, a day that gets a lot of people into a Mexican state of mind. This year, don't be one of the folks down at T.G.I. McAppleChili's, snorking down Coronas and Cuervo shots. This year is the year for you to class yourself up, so when you drink your tequila you should give Sangrita a try.
Basically a spicy tomato juice with other flavors involved as well, Sangrita is the perfect chaser for your tequila - we prefer to alternate sips between Sangrita and Tequila or Mezcal, but it's a good chaser after shots as well. Read on for our favorite recipe - it's also incredibly easy and calls for ingredients you may already have lying around - and please let us know if you know any others.
Continue reading: "Sangrita Recipe for Cinquo de Mayo"
May 3, 2007
We've got two words for you...BEER JELLO. It's like Jello shots...but with beer! We love finding products that are on the bleeding edge of technological progress.
We’ve all been in this situation: You’ve just finished dinner, and dessert is coming up, but your beer just won’t taste right chasing down something sweet. “What do I do?” You ask yourself, but your desire for dessert AND beer tears you apart. Naturally, you decline the sweets and opt for something salty to go with your frosty beverage.
That’s all in the past, because now you can have your beer and eat it too with the Yebisu beer jelly, a gelatin desert that is based on, smells like, and tastes like (you guessed it) Yebisu Premium Beer.
May 2, 2007
We like to give the interns a chance to take a stab at writing their own reviews once in a while - it keeps their thoughts away from that mutiny they're always threatening. Our latest review is from the newest addition to our team, Intern Josh, and we'd love to hear what you think of his review of Milagro Tequila Romance.
Read his take on this two-headed monstrosity after the jump, and please feel free to add your comment and let us know if you've tried the Romance, and what you think of the review.
Continue reading: "Milagro Tequila Romance Review"
May 1, 2007
There's nothing that gets you in the mood to drink like a resurrection, so April has always held a fond spot in our hearts. Another reason for our fondness of this April was the fact that it gave us the chance to hope it was going to stop raining everyfreakinday in May. We can dream, can't we? Oh, and we also discovered a great new vodka (Cirrus), a fantastic TV show (Three Sheets), and learned about how Strawberry Daiquiris might help stave off the Big C. What a month!
Read on for the stories.
Continue reading: "Liquor Snob Monthly Roundup: April 2007"