Yes, we know this title sounds like some Neil Gaiman fever dream, but it's really about beer. Very strong beer, in fact. Basically, you can stop sending us emails telling us about the 110 proof Scottish beer called The End of History. Yes, we have heard of this (formerly*) strongest beer in the world. We didn't post it because drinking out of a dead critter gives us the heebie jeebies (plus the whole roadkill decanter thing has been done before).
Also, we're much more interested in the Internet's response to this big-proof beer. One certain response actually - Tom Scott's attempt to help the brewer market a lower-cost version of beer served in an animal. He has shoved a can of cheap beer up the ass of a teddy bear and mailed it off to the brewery to help them offer a budget version of their hoity toity beer. Now THAT'S something we can get behind. Check out the whole saga at Tom's website. [Link via b3ta]
* Did we say formerly? Oh, right, because some Dutch guy just made a 120 proof beer called Start the Future. Boosh. [Thanks for the link, Doug]
We're starting to get into this Bacardi True Originals series, showcasing different types of bartenders. We can see where they're going with it. We have to admit we were nervous for this one after we saw perfectly good bar utensils start flying through the air. Yes, we were impressed by his aerodynamic artistry, but we kept wanting to yell "STOP BOUNCING THE BOTTLE ON YOUR DAMN ELBOW AND MIX THE DRINK ALREADY!"
Then, we read over at A Dash of Bitters that this dude is a real bartender (named Nicolas Saint-Jean if you're curious) and all is right in the world again - and this is our favorite video in the series. Now we need to just get ourselves one of those vanilla pod straws...
It's just dawned on us that we might be at risk of letting the summer slide by without posting our review of the Beefeater Summer Gin the company sent along to us a couple weeks ago, so please allow us to rectify this situation. So, without further ado we'd like to unveil our new 4-B reviewing method (Bottle, Bouquet, Bite & Bottom Line) and apply it to Beefeater's summery London Dry gin.
The bottle has the same profile we've come to expect from Beefeater, but the label features less of the yeoman warders of the brand's namesake in favor of something airy, floral, and summery. The bouquet is similar to what we'd expect from a London Dry, with a juniper smell, but it's rounded at the edges by the elderflower, currants, and hibiscus flowers that join it in the botanicals.
The bite is softer and smoother than you might expect, and we were pleasantly surprised by how well the summer-oriented botanicals mixed with a dry gin, allowing the juniper to take more of a back seat. Part of this smoothness comes from the fact the Summer Edition is a bit underproof compared to regular Beefeater (80 proof, or 40% ABV, instead of 94 proof), but the delicate summer botanicals add a sweetness you might not often find.
So what's the bottom line? We didn't detect an enormous difference between the Summer Edition and standard Beefeater, but the lower proof, floral notes, and mellower flavor profile make it a winner for any summer party or backyard barbecue. The materials we got with our bottle suggested cranberry juice or tonic water as excellent mixers, and we agree with that - we also had great success making perfect martinis (with or without a drop of rose water), and it was equally delicious mixed with lemonade.
Beefeater Summer Edition retails for about $20 for 750ML; keep an eye out in your local liquor store if you want to pick up a bottle.
Powell & Mahoney is a Massachusetts-based company that makes pre-bottled, micro-batch cocktail mixers in multiple varieties. They're also the creators of the five bottles that just arrived at the Liquor Snob offices, which we will be reviewing ASAP. The flavors we got are Cosmopolitan, Mojito, Bloody Mary, Margarita, and Ginger, the last one being a newly-released flavor that just came out last week. Here's the rundown on each bottle to tide you over until we crack them open:
Cosmopolitan - "...our mix of Cape Cod cranberry juice, Key Lime juice, and organic cane sugar will make the sexiest cocktail around."
Mojito - "Our faithful recreation includes mint oil, lime oil, Key Lime juice and organic cane sugar to give it that freshly muddled taste."
Bloody Mary - "We pay homage to the most classic of all cocktails by using only the finest ingredients and the original recipe."
Margarita - "Our recipe uses only real Valencia orange oil, Key Lime juice, and organic cane sugar. That's it."
Ginger - "This recipe packs the spicy wallop of spicy, soothing, therapeutic ginger in every sip...perfect as a sippable soft drink or as a mixer with whiskey, rum, or brandy."
We've tasted our share of pre-made cocktail mixers for most of these, so we're really excited to try out the Ginger...in something Dark and/or Stormy perhaps? Keep an eye out for our review, as well as their upcoming Hot Toddy mixer (due in August), and be on the lookout to see Powell & Mahoney in a store near you.
It's pretty rare that we go topical, but it's kind of hard to ignore something as big as the BP oil spill, and we'd feel remiss if we didn't chime in. Our natural tendency is to ass off about the state of things, but you've got that pretty well covered.
Instead, we present to you the Gulf Spill, a cocktail from Gwen over at Intoxicated Zodiac. Our plan for a similar theme was to just start pouring Jagermeister into our mouth and not stop for three months or so...hers sounds like a better (and probably more delicious) alternative.
We've encountered quite a few breathalyzers in our time (for testing purposes only, of course), and one brand we've seen good results with is Alcohawk. They're our industry standard for personal breathalyzers, and we find them to be consistent and accurate without much need for recalibration.*
The newest addition to the Alcohawk stable we've come across is the Slim Ultra, a pocket-sized contraption, which at only 1.7 oz is a pygmy compared to some of the breathalyzers we've encountered. It's designed for single-button operation and features a folding mouthpiece that really slims down its profile in your pocket or purse. It even comes with a few extra mouthpieces so your friends don't slobber all over yours.
* We use our breathalyzers for informative purposes only - we've said it before and we'll say it again...if you've had enough to drink that you think you might need a breathalyzer before you get behind the wheel, you've probably had too much to drive. Find another way home, you magnificently self-aware bastard you.
This is a shirt that features a beer bottle-opening robot. We are going to get this shirt, and we will call it our Robottle Opener. In between opening beers, we will reprogram the robot to help us take over the world. That's going to take a lot of beers.
See what we did there? With the title? They're bullet-shaped ice cubes and we said "make killer drinks." We slay us. OH! We did it again! Hilarity!
This ice cube tray is perfect for those days when you're mixing guns with liquor (always a good idea) or maybe when you just want to send a stern message to someone. They're your trays - it's up to you really.
It has been so damnably hot on the east coast for the last week or so, we couldn't find it in ourselves to even write about booze. We drank it of course, but in our un-air-conditioned estate we could barely afford the calorie expenditure of bringing glass to lips, much less typey-typey in our torturous hotbox of an office.
So, to get things back on track, we have found a book for you. We haven't read it, nor did we really research it beyond the title, but c'mon...it's called "How to Booze." We've already ordered ours, not that we need all that much help, but this writeup convinced us:
Kaye, a lawyer who has worked as a bartender and sommelier, and Altier, a bartender and drinks consultant, keep the patter snappy as they cover proper drink pairings for the times of your life, from first date to last rites, with entertaining entries for such unique crises as "Drowning Out the Ticking of Your Biological Clock" and "Realizing Your Child Is a Fucking Idiot."
Snap it up and read it in a hammock while balancing a drink on your belly, when you're supposed to be doing something constructive. That's what we plan to do.
If there's a particular time of the year that we really, really like to drink gin, it's the summer. There's something about a gin and tonic on a warm summer night that just seems so right, you know? In fact, sometimes it seems a bit too right.
In the spirit of summer gin, we just got in a bottle of Beefeater Summer, a london dry gin with elderflower, black currant, and hibiscus flowers. We haven't tasted it yet (it's only nine in the morning, and we like to wait until at least eleven before we have liquor breath), but a quick sniff tells us it's light and fruity, and could be extra dangerous on those aforementioned summer nights.
Luckily, it's slightly lower test than regular Beefeater, clocking in at 80 proof instead of the standard 94, which might just save our bacon. It'll retail for about $20 per 750ML bottle, so look for it in your local liquor store, and we'll get our review up ASAP for this limited-run spirit.
June is quickly coming to a close, and if there's one thing we learned a lot about, it's how to smuggle booze into places that want to charge you a lot for said booze. We discovered the Beer Bandolier (OK...that's less smuggling than in-your-face-bandito) and My Bootlegger, and we were featured on Music Festival Junkies (new window) for all the smuggly goodness we've covered over the years. We also found out about a cool Bacardi promotion to support the troops, and accidentally stumbled across salmon-flavored vodka.