We've spent the last few weeks playing around with our Vodka Zinger liquor infusion system for the last few weeks off and on, and we've put together some thoughts on the system and how well it works. Liquor infusions are a quick and easy way to impart some new flavors into your booze, and it's a fun hobby for a lot of people who are looking into dipping a toe into the mixology pool. So - does the Vodka Zinger simplify the infusion of your booze enough to justify the price tag, or are you better off sticking to your mason jars and strainers?
Flavored liquors have been the rage for quite a while now, and as more and more cocktail enthusiasts get bolder and bolder with their drinks, home-infusing spirits has become increasingly popular. Generally, you can get away with just dumping some fruit (or something) into a bottle of vodka (or something), let it sit for a while and come out with something relatively tasty on the other end, but there is usually some level of straining and filtering that needs to be done.
The folks at Zing Anything say they're making liquor infusions more convenient with their Vodkazinger, a 20 oz. canister made of double-walled food-safe stainless steel. It's got an "ingredient cup" you screw on the bottom to let your infusion flavors meld with your booze, but save you some cleanup time on the other end.
The stainless steel bottle has a bottom-mounted grinder that retains the ground pulp of your ingredients, but allows the pure extracted flavors to travel through a fine-combed mesh screen and infuse the water. All you need to do is add fresh ingredients, twist, and shake!
We haven't tried it yet, but it seems like a good way to quickly infuse your spirits - this thing will hold the lion's share of a bottle of booze (20 oz. is about 600 ML) which will leave you some to drink while you're infusing your strawberry rhubarb basil chili lemongrass citrus raspberry rosemary zingerita.
Vodkazinger is available for under thirty bucks including shipping at Zing Anything.
Tis the season to wish you were James Bond, what with Skyfall out right now, and the bar10der just might make you the man with a golden shaker this year. This 10-in-one bartending tool includes a muddler, a stirrer, knives (channel and regular), zester, reamer, jigger, bottle opener, cork screw and strainer. It's also (we assume) Q-approved for dangerous missions, so whip out your license to mix and whip us up a Vesper.
If you're interested in distilling your own spirits but haven't wanted to hassle with putting together your own still, your wishes may have just come true. Introducing EasyStill, a compact distillery contraption meant to take the "guesswork" and "old car radiators" out of home distilling. You'll have to do the research on the legality of using it in your area, of course, and in the words of our friend Rick at CocktailGoGo, "I have no idea what their guarantees are when it comes to blindness or a Jake Walk, but who cares!"
At last it is easy to make alcohol distillation a hobby. The actual distilling is as easy as making coffee! EasyStill is a tabletop distillation unit. 4 liters of mash or wine are added and the unit plugged in.
A quick three hours after you flip the switch, you'll have 1.4 liters of 92 proof spirits. No word on how crushing the hangovers are. Learn more at EasyStill.com [via CocktailGoGo]
Ever wished you had some kind of robotic bartender to perform your every cocktail whim? While it may not have the charm and conversational skills you're looking for, The Inebriator will mix you a cocktail and (apparently) play some tunes for you too? Check out the video above for this Arduino-powered bartender in action. The first thing we noticed was that it lacks an ability to shake a cocktail...maybe they just need to put a paint mixer at the end of the conveyor belt?
If you're wondering how it works:
...bottles lined up upside-down and optics providing set measures. The user places their glass on a pedestal and selects their drink of choice on the display at the front of the unit. The pedestal then moves along collecting the right spirits as it goes thanks to motors pushing the glass upwards at the appropriate moments. Finally it adds the mixers, connected as and when needed by nitrogen-pressurized tubes to deliver the final touches to the cocktails from a cooler located out of sight.
We got a package in the mail yesterday, and inside was Bottle Ninja from Bar Ninja for review. It's a sleek-looking creation that looks just like the butterfly knives we coveted as kids, but when you flip it open you'll find a bottle opener instead of a blade - and you'll probably be much less prone to lop off a fingertip if you hold it wrong.
The Bottle Ninja comes with two darling little glow sticks you can put into the flippy end, which would look most awesome if you were bartending at a rave in the '90s or opening sodas at an eight year old's birthday party. We're kind of wishing they'd gone with a speed-opener shape for the bottle opener, but we can sort of understand the design choice they made in the interest of not having handles as thick as your wrist.
Those small quibbles aside, we feel like Chuck Norris when we're flipping the thing open - even though we've never seen Chuck use a butterfly knife, nor have we seen him tend bar. We'll be taking ours down to the bar today to put it through its paces though, just as sure as Chuck doesn't sleep - he waits.
Get your own Bottle Ninja for $15.95, and check out their promotional video at Bar Ninja.
If you've never had a Moscow Mule, you're missing out on an excellent, simple drink that completely hits the spot during summertime. Basically a Dark N Stormy with vodka instead of dark rum, this combination of vodka, ginger beer and lime juice is like a high five of deliciousness for your tongue.
For those of you who are familiar with Moscow Mules, here are a couple things you might not know - 1) a Mule (also known as a "Buck") is any variation of cocktail using ginger beer, citrus juice and a base spirit, and 2) Moscow Mules are traditionally served in a copper mug instead of a glass. Most bars these days serve the cocktails in pint glasses because they already have them around, and because the interesting-looking copper mugs have a tendency to grow legs and walk out the door.
If you're a fan of this delicious drink you can get your own copper mugs for a bit of an investment. Do they make the cocktail better? Some say they do, because of some science-y mumbo jumbo called oxidation. But we just think the mugs look badass, really.
We've been thinking about getting a kegerator for Liquor Snob headquarters (because why not, right?) but we really like the idea of building our own. We don't have a chest freezer like the one used in this how to video from Northern Brewer, and that's pretty much the only thing keeping us from heading upstairs and pawing all the frozen waffles and ice cream right out of the damn thing post haste.
Most people I know who are into guitars are also pretty interested in beer. That's why this Marshall amp-shaped beer fridge is a stroke of genius. It features 4.4 cubic feet of storage, convenient can racks, and yes - the knobs on the outside go to 11. And yes, I'm sure this is what you're most concerned about - it's Energy Star compliant.
The Marshall Fridge will be available for $299, for shipment on October 1, 2012 (the day before our Editor in Chief's birthday...just sayin') at MarshallFridge.com. [via The Awesomer]
Some might say a liquor chiller is unnecessary in a time when pretty much everyone has access to a refrigerator, but we say those people lack vision. Margaritaville's Chillin' Pour liquor chiller holds 750ml (a full bottle) and chills liquids down to 15 degrees Farenheit. Some might put a margarita in there as the designers intended, but others might use it for something more nefarious - such as a Jagermeister chiller? Possibilities are endless.
At the time of this post Amazon is selling the Chillin' Pour machine for a huge discount - the retail price is $200 but they're selling it for under $60. That, friends, is a bargain.
If you're one of those people who'd rather socialize with guests at your holiday party, rather than mixing their drinks, Margaritaville has a new option for you. They've put together this tidy little machine that will allow you to attach a bottle of booze (vodka, rum, whatever) and four different types of mixers. Guests can then choose their own poison (figuratively) while you're flitting around fluffing pillows and twittering at bad jokes.
The gizmo will let you pour a double (though your guests don't have to know that), and will even let you surprise yourself with a random concoction. If we had this machine, we'd attach a bottle of vodka, then fill the other canisters with rum, tequila, gin and whiskey and see how many button presses it would take to black out mix a Long Island Iced Tea.
Drool cleanup in Aisle 3...can we get a drool cleanup in Aisle 3? I can't say I've been on the market for a new liquor cabinet, but this glorious piece of work mashes my Star Wars Nerd button and my Liquor Nerd button right at the same time. I'm already dreaming about using my harpoon and tow cables to bring this sucker down, then lightsabering my way in to get the boozy goodness inside.
Guess I'd better keep dreaming, though, because I don't think this sucker's for sale. [Thanks for the tip, Jay]
For those of you who haven't heard of whiskey stones, they're basically rocks you can keep in your freezer and toss into your drinks to chill them without watering them down. Might seem a bit weird, but we've seen people do a lot stranger stuff with booze.
If you don't like the idea of dropping the igneous in your drink, perhaps a stone shot glass will serve you better? Just toss it in the freezer for four hours before you plan to drink and voila...and as a point of interest these are made right here in Vermont, not too far from Liquor Snob headquarters.
Yes, that's right - we said Bosch, like the power tool people. While this bottle-opening beauty isn't available here in the states right now, you can get your hands on it at Amazon UK if you're drooling over it as much as we are. Just think of the BPMs (Bottles Per Minute) you'll achieve with four volts of cordless power!
It's really just a 4-volt Bosch screwdriver with a funky corkscrew attachment, but we're going to ignore the fact that the tool can be used like any other screwdriver and pretend that it can only be used for opening wine bottles.
No word on whether you can get just the attachment for your existing cordless screwdriver, but we can always dream. [via the handsome gentlemen over at our sister site Tool Snob]