Machines for everything…
The UK Ambassador for Reyka, the premium Icelandic vodka, has invented a Martini Dispenser that delivers perfect, ice cold Reyka cocktails every time.
Fuelled with a mix of Reyka vodka, vermouth and limited edition Reyka bitters; at the push of a button the Martini Dispenser pumps the cocktail through flash coolers that chill the liquid down to -18 degrees Celsius before neatly dispensing it from a brass tap into your martini glass. All that’s needed to perfect the cocktail is a final red grapefruit zest garnish.
Joe Petch, UK Brand Ambassador for Reyka, commented: “With several events on the horizon, I’ve been looking for a way for guests to serve their own perfectly cold Reyka Martinis. The machine we came up with reflects the inventive culture of Iceland, where people do things a little bit differently but also in a resourceful way – reinventing unwanted or unused objects to fulfil…
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Bulgarian cuisine is the culmination of all of the greatest traditional dishes in Southeastern Europe, incorporating hints of Russian, Middle Eastern, Greek, Turkish and Serbian flavors and ingredients. Bulgarian dishes are decadently rich and yet simple concoctions of spices and fresh raw ingredients that are found in abundance in the region.Bulgaria’s diverse and delicious dishes come from its location at the literal crossroads of the modern world in Southeastern Europe. With Turkey and Greece to the south, Bulgarian dishes often reflect classic Greek flavors such as olive oil and a hearty use of feta cheese, while the Turkish influence is seen in the grilled meats and stuffed pastries that are commonly cooked in large gatherings. The delicious cuisine and traditional dishes of Bulgaria are hearty, warm and inviting… and we invite you to learn about some of our favorite traditional Bulgarian dishes here:
We have to begin with…
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There are two legal classifications of London gin – ‘Gin’ and ‘Distilled Gin’. ‘Gin’ is a flavoured spirit with a minimum strength of 37.5% abv with the main flavour being juniper. A ‘Distilled Gin’ must be made by a process in which the juniper and other natural flavourings are distilled with the spirit in a pot still.
There is also an Appellation around Plymouth Gin in that it must be made in Plymouth.
Gin has a long and dark history starting in Italy in the 11th Century, when monks were flavouring distilled spirit with juniper.
The first recognizable ancestor of gin is credited to a Professor of medicine at Holland’s Leyden University called Dr. Sylvius.
British soldiers fighting in Holland during the 17th century found the spirit, which they called ‘Hollands’ and may have brought it home. It is the ‘Hollands’ that gained…
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A good post, some tongue-in-cheek.
Over at the Wine Wanker’s head office we are very committed to promoting the virtues of wine, but we don’t often criticise the alternatives. This blog therefore corrects this glaring omission from our line-up of posts, and demonstrates the superiority of wine over it’s poorer cousin beer. Why beer? Well in Australia anyway (Downunder for our American friends), it is the most consumed alcoholic beverage, and as such some ground needs to be made up by the wine fraternity to correct this travesty.
We have a craft beer revolution going on here at present and it has been interesting watching beer swillers becoming refined craft beer nerds. Conrad and Neal recently went to a craft beer brewery that has sprung up in Enmore and it was hilarious watching this cultural shift. Deadset there were beer wankers everywhere. Good idea…
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Some great ideas for squash and pumpkins
A few weeks ago I purchased “all the squash.” I wanted to do something fun with each of them, and I think I accomplished just that. Below are the random creations I came up with for five different types of squash. I don’t have recipe measurements because I usually just throw things together, but this will give you an idea of different flavor combinations to experiment with!You’ll see I used the outer “shell” of each squash as my bowl. Eating directly out of the squash shell is almost more fun than tormenting small children. Almost.
Named for its string like consistency, this squash is a fun substitute for noodles.
In the mix: olive oil, nutritional yeast, pepper, jalapenos, broccoli and cauliflower.
The squash with a funny name and an equally funny shape. Borderline inappropriate for both…
In the mix: Sauteed kale, cubed/roasted butternut squash, cranberries, cashews, olive…
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Personally, I like Merlot…
With just one line “I’m not drinking any f*cking Merlot!” the movie “Sideways” is believed to have delivered a hiding to the quality producers of wine from this noble grape. For some strange reason, a lot of wine consumers took this line as meaning that Merlot was now uncool and not really all that good after all.
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One of my first cocktails I was proud of: The Japanese Sunrise. It is one of those dangerous, deceiving concoctions, those that you cannot “taste the alcohol” yet struggle to find your bedroom after a few! Deliciously fruity, with a healthy balance between the sweet Midori and fresh lemon juice.
The well established, modern day mixologist might find a reason to attack my blog, stating that Midori and Malibu is far from craft cocktails and fresh ingredients, and perhaps they are right, nonetheless it doesn’t change the facts it was the first cocktail that I was proud of, and still a favorite amongst my local customers; so why change a bad habit?!?
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Some of these are hilarious!
As cocktail enthusiasts, you should know by now that writing and research is just an excuse for us to drink and try new cocktails, but like everyone else, the morning after can be tough. While the “hair of the dog” for many people consists of a Bloody Mary or Mimosa, we swear by a combination of the following two ingredients: Fernet Branca and ginger.
Like most cordials, Fernet was originally concocted for medicinal purposes. The combination of headache-curing and stomach-settling herbs include anise, camomile, cardamom, rhubarb, myrrh, and eucalyptus.
It’s no secret that the other component, ginger, is traditionally used for all types of ailments as well. This is where our family differs the most; whether it is Domaine De Canton, ginger ale, ginger syrup, or fresh ginger, we all agree that the combination of Fernet and ginger is the best remedy for a hangover.
While Ryan may throw back…
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Archaeologists have made a stunning discovery in a shipwreck near the coast of Poland; a 200-year old bottle of booze. But wait, it gets better. After running some tests they claim that the content of the stoneware bottle is still drinkable. It’s also the oldest mix drink on the planet, since we are dealing with a mix between hard liquor (vodka or jenever) and water. Maybe not the best cocktail recipe you ever heard of, but with an alcohol percentage of 14 this one liter bottle might still give you a nice buzz.
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Pubs closing at rate of 31 a week
The rate at which British pubs are closing down has accelerated to 31 a week and 3% of pubs in the suburbs have shut in the past six months, the real ale group Camra has warned.
Campaigners are calling for an urgent change in the law to make it harder for pubs to be demolished or converted to supermarkets and convenience stores.
The peak closure period was between January and June 2009 when 52 pubs ceased trading every week, and there are now 54,490 pubs left in the country.
At the start of its annual Great British Beer Festival, Camra has launched a campaign calling for a planning application to be required before a pub is demolished or converted to another use.
Pubs can currently be converted to a range of uses without planning permission. Camra says that in most cases communities have been powerless to save their locals.
Tom Stainer, head of communications at Camra, said: “Popular and profitable pubs are being left vulnerable by gaps in English planning legislation as pubs are increasingly being targeted by those wishing to take advantage of the absence of proper planning control.
“It is utterly perverse that developers are able to demolish or convert a pub into a convenience store or many other uses without any requirement to apply for planning permission. It is wrong that communities are left powerless when a popular local pub is threatened with demolition or conversion into a Tesco store.”
Source: TheGuardian Read more
Normally, I wouldn’t include a shandy here, but the label says ‘lemonade flavoured’, so I guess it qualifies.
I had a wine ready for review today, but I drank it.
Finishing the bottle at the botequim, I forgot to bring it home… I had hoped to get another, but haven’t been out of the house for the cold.
It was French, red, good… Not plonk. Name started with a B, not Burgundy.
Heres the blurb I wrote on the day of the crime:
“Yes, today, weinerschnitzel; all crumbed and ready to go. Boiled potatoes and buttered peas and cauliflower cheese on the side. French Bordeaux in the offing…
Oh, I know how to do it on a Sunday.”
I’ll do better next time.
I really must stop drinking wine before I’ve featured it here, but I am such a weak person.
Sneaky tricks of the restaurant trade and how to avoid forking out too much
During the summer, smart restaurant owners put cunning tactics on the menu to boost profits
Ever found yourself unexpectedly drinking expensive French wine in a restaurant while Edith Piaf’s La Vie en Rose plays in the background? Or perhaps you’ve unintentionally parted with a hefty tip after being touched on the shoulder by your waiter? Oops. You might well have succumbed to two of the restaurant trade’s sneaky ways to get you to spend more money without realising it.
And never are these subtle strategies more employed than during the holidays. Recent figures from the Post Office show that more than 40% of parents are worried about how much they are going to spend on family meals out during the summer.
So, while smart restaurant owners have a number of clever ways to boost their profits, learn their tricks and you could make considerable savings.
How much we spend on a meal hinges on the way the menu is presented. Everything – from the listing of the dishes to the language of the descriptions – has been designed to appeal to your senses.
While you would assume that we read a menu from left to right, studies show that our eyes gravitate toward the upper right-hand corner first. This is often where the “anchor” – or the most profitable item – is located.
But this particular ploy is more cunning than simply getting you to buy the most expensive dishes: typically, having this usually quite costly dish listed will make everything look reasonably priced in comparison.
“Having an outrageously expensive item is both likely to get publicity for a restaurant, and will also get people to spend more,” says Charles Spence, experimental psychologist at the University of Oxford and co-author of The Perfect Meal: The Multisensory Science of Food and Dining.
“People think ‘I wonder if anyone ever orders that?’, without realising that its true purpose is to make the next most expensive item seem cheaper.”
Conversely, research suggests that diners look at the bottom left of a menu last, so this is where the least expensive dishes will be positioned.
Even the way the food and drink is listed can subconsciously influence our spending.
Many diners will order the second least-expensive bottle on wine in an attempt to avoid looking cheap. Knowing this, restaurants place the highest markup on that very bottle.
Diners on a budget will often scour the menu and choose one of the three cheapest dishes, but the restaurant industry is fully aware of this and takes steps to ensure bumper profits.
“Restaurants will centre-align a list to make it more difficult to compare prices,” says Spence. “If you right-justify items, customers can more easily compare and will be less likely to go for more expensive items,” he says.
And watch out for those pound signs – or lack of them. A study from American university Cornell found that guests given a menu with only numbers and no currency symbols spent significantly more than those who received a menu with prices either showing currency symbols or written out in words.
Source: TheGuardian Read more about their sneaky tricks.
Surely, an oxymoron…
First bottles of Ethiopian wine produced by French firm Castel
The grape names – merlot, syrah, cabernet sauvignon, chardonnay – are distinctly French, but the label on the Rift Valley wines is surprising: made in Ethiopia.
The French beverage giant Castel, one of the world’s biggest producers of wines and beers, is raising a glass to its first production of 1.2m bottles of Ethiopian Rift Valley wine.
The African state’s former president Meles Zenawi, who died in 2012, encouraged Castel to develop vineyards in Ethiopia, one of Africa’s poorest countries, as a way of improving its image.
Half of the bottles are destined for domestic consumption and half for export to countries where the Ethiopian diaspora have settled, though 26,000 have already been snapped up by a Chinese buyer.
Although Castel does not expect its Ethiopian wine business to make a profit until 2016, it hopes to more than double production to 3m bottles a year. Though Ethiopia is better known for its production of another drink, coffee, Castel says the African country has the potential to rival the continent’s main wine producer, South Africa.
“It’s not that difficult because the climate is good and it’s not too hot,” Castel’s Ethiopia site manager, Olivier Spillebout, told Agence France-Presse. “Exports are small now, but year after year they will grow.”
The company has produced a better quality wine called Rift Valley, selling in Ethiopia for the equivalent of €7 (£5.50) and a grape-mix wine called Acacia, retailing at the equivalent of €5.
Source: TheGuardian Read more
Castel, A French Wine Maker, To Export Ethiopian Wine
A leading French wine maker, Castel Winery plans to begin bottling wine for export starting early next year from its Battu (commonly known as Zeway) based vineyard.
It is Ethiopia’s first foreign winery after all wineries were nationalized during the Derg regime, and has been cultivating four different types of French wine since May 2008.
I have never thought about “food saints” before…
It’s a classic vegetarian Indian restaurant dish that’s quick and easy to make. But do you like yours wet or dry? And is frozen spinach ever acceptable?
Choosing from a menu is never straightforward where I’m concerned – I’m always worried I’m going to make the wrong choice, and miss out on something I’ll never get the chance to try again. But as soon as I sink into the soft flock cushions favoured by British Indian restaurants of the old school, all such worries melt away – I know exactly what I’m going to have. Inevitably it’s a spicy lamb curry from the chef’s specials, with tarka dal and saag paneer, accompanied by a plain naan, ideally one the size of the napkin.
Now, I can make some pretty decent lamb curries, even if I sometimes have difficulty identifying one, and I’m a dab hand at dal, yet the simplest dish – fried spinach and fresh cheese – has proved a remarkably tough nut to crack. Nothing I’ve tried has come close to matching up to the garlicky, greasy greens served in the humblest of curry houses; nice, sure, but not the kind of dish you’d go back to like a woman obsessed. It seemed time for a more systematic approach – just how do they do it?
Now, if your interested… you can read all about the greens, the cheese, the spices and flavourings and the ‘how to’ on The Guardian.
Today, something quite different.
I bet you’ve never seen a wine rack this classy…
Wine rack with a ceramic backsplash.
I think this is awesome.
A heap of other decorating ideas too.
A craft beer
Gillian is a saison with strawberries, honey, and white pepper that has been aged in used wine barrels.
From: Goose Island, Chicago
Daily Beer Review for tasting, etc.
Another review: The Barley Blog
Have a good wekend!
I did it again, didn’t I?
Better luck next week.
Today is Labor Day, I’m having a little BBQ and a bottle of wine. But before I let the wine breath, let’s have a look.
Santa Helena Reserve Merlot 2012 from Colchagua, the Central Valley in Chile.
Haven’t tried this one before, but it’s Merlot, what more can one say.
100% Merlot, intense red with violet tones.
Aroma: plums, spices and mint.
Price: R$17, right up my alley (about $6,50).
Today’s temp is ideal for this wine, 19ºC.
You can read about it on Wines of My Life, the blog is in Portuguese, but way down on the side bar there is a translator for English.