Posts Tagged ‘why to drink’

Healthy Alcohol Drinking this Summer

healthier drink this summer

Summer is knocking at the door and what great way to beat the summer heat than to drink champagne and cocktails during the happy hour. Raise your glasses!

But nothing lasts forever, and so does the happy hour. Did you ever stop to think about all the calories you drank then? I bet you didn’t, but you should have!

According to Crystal Bouchard, a dietitian from Bayhealth Medical Center, acetate is the byproduct of alcohol when it is being broken down by our body. It is also seen when our body breaks down fat or carbohydrates. However, only less work is needed when the body breaks down alcohol because it has lesser amounts of fiber and nutrients.

Thus, with only less work and burn, you will gain more weight when you drink alcohol.

“There’s no fiber, there’s nothing really going on there, so essentially when it breaks down it puts any other fat breakdown on hold,” says Bouchard.

If you don’t want to gain those unwanted weight, you should ask for “skinny” options from your bartender. Or, you can eat a filling meal before heading out for a drink. You may order appetizers at happy hour as well.

An important thing to keep in mind is that women shouldn’t drink more than one drink a day; while men should only have 2 drinks, at most. Here are some healthy cocktail tips.

healthier drink this summer

Happy Hour Drinks this Summer. www.delawareonline.com

Drink Only in Moderation

Note that champagne has about 84 calories; therefore, don’t mix it with sweetened juices and aim for a fresh, clean drink.

Lessen your Consumption of Crushes

Summer has always been the time of sipping Orange Crushes, which typically contains orange flavored vodka from Smirnoff, triple sec, and Sierra Mist with a freshly squeezed orange juice.

For a healthier option, you might want to do away with Sierra Mist and mix club soda for some zest, instead; or go with unsweetened spirits. You may opt for unflavored gin, vodka, rum, whisky, brandy, tequila, and cognac as they only contain 65 calories in one serving.

“There’s always a lower calorie alternative with mix-ins,” says Bouchard. “As long as it’s portioned out it’s totally acceptable.”

Namaste

“I would love to say beer is a healthy beverage, but it really is liquid bread,” the manager of Dogfish Head Brewery’s new Chesapeake and Maine restaurant, Mike Babcock, jokingly said.

There’s light at the end of the tunnel, however. Dogfish Head Brewery’s Namaste or Festina Peche beers are among the light varieties of beer without that many calories. Light beer has an average of only 110 calories per serving.

Drink Wine Wisely

Choose wines that are drier and less sweet because they have fewer calories. A glass of wine has about 125 calories.

Choose Tequila

The “Original Agave” has Patron Citronge, El Jimador Tequila, fresh lime juice, and agave nectar. You can do away with nectar to save some calories.

Use Cucumber

You can add flavor to your spirits by infusing cucumber. You might want to try the Salt and Pepper Cup of Chespeake and Maine as it contains cucumber slices that make the drink really refreshing.

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The Best Whisky Bars to Visit

Jack Rose Dining Saloon, Washington D.C, USA

One of the best ways to ease stress is to go to a great bar and drink the best whiskies with some of your closest friends. In general, a bar is a place to have a good time and create good memories. So, here’s a list of the best bars that you should try in your lifetime.

Dick Macks

Dick Macks, located in Dingle, Ireland, is a family-operated bar established in 1899. Outside, you will see Hollywood-style slabs that have names of stars that visited the pub (Julia Roberts and Sean Connery, to name a few). Meanwhile, the bar’s walls are decorated with the family’s memorabilia. In its backrooms and slugs, you are allowed to have a sample of the many Irish greats. The bar also has space for drams that came from regions in Scotland. After building up the business with the help of Peter White from the Irish Whiskey Society, most of their stock came by word of mouth.

Jack Rose Dining Saloon

Jack Rose Dining Saloon is located in Washington D.C., USA. It boasts of 2,390 whiskies on its shelves, thereby having the widest selection in the Western World. The bar itself also has a huge space with a total of 6,700 square feet space designed with leather seats and ladders, and with 5 different bars.

The most popular tables, however, are located in the basement, the Dram & Grain, where customers actually book 2 hours of whisky-based cocktail experience. Aside from that, they also serve drams on draft, with different themes every week.

Jack Rose Dining Saloon, Washington D.C, USA

Jack Rose Dining Saloon, Washington D.C, USA. By www.telegraph.co.uk

Black Rock

Black Rock in London, UK is a whisky bar with a twist! At the center of the bar, there is an ancient 18-foot English oak, split in half and plumbed in with water taps and whisky. It has more than 250 bottles of the golden stuff and a whisky-only cocktail menu that is made to feature the unique flavors of different regions and styles.

Shot Bar Zoetrope

Shot Bar Zoetrope, owned by Atsushi Horigami of Tokyo, Japan, is home to whisky and American movies. From the neon streets of Shinjuku district, this intimate, quirky bar constantly plays a stream of black and white movies and 250 various drams are stored. Choices range from Venture Whisky to Japanese classic Nikka, and 3 in-house bottles.

Flatiron Room

The Flatiron Room in New York is home to around 1,000 whiskies — their staff has to use ladders to reach your favorites. They have a “Bottle Keep” service that would let you label the bottle with your name and store your favorite drink into whenever you drop by while enjoying plush banquettes and live jazz. If you can’t even tell bourbon from rye, you may book a session in their Whisky School upstairs.

Talisker Distillery

Talisker Distillery is located in the coastline of Carbost Bay at the Isle of Skye, Scotland. While it is not technically a bar, you can join tasting tours where you get to sample on of its single malt whiskies while you enjoy the scenery and ambiance.

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Some of the Best Whiskies You Must Try

Whisky Enthusiast

Single malt whiskies have been increasingly popular around the world in many countries outside of Scotland, including Australia, and winning awards along the way. Among the new nations for whisky-making nowadays are India, Japan, Sweden, and Taiwan.

Alexandra Dahlenburg, a manager at the Grain bar of the Four Seasons hotel in Sydney, is a whisky-spotter herself. Over the years, she has curated one of the biggest collections in the city, having over 200 drams to show.

The Grain bar hosts a whisky night every Monday, giving away 20% discount on all the whiskeys they offer. She even makes a weekly whisky flight of 4 x 15 ml drams for only $40 ($30 on Monday), where you can explore different varieties of whiskies and decide on what you like.

The Business Insider had asked Dahlenburg to create a list of whiskies that she thinks everyone should try at least once. Her personal choice of whiskies has been based on research and personal opinion.

“At Grain bar, we believe whisky is about your own personal journey. Each individual nose and palate is going to pick up different smells and tastes, so there’s no wrong answer in what you like. It’s the journey of discovering that’s important,” she said.

Whisky Enthusiast

Grain bar manager and whisky enthusiast Alexandra Dahlenburg. Photo: www.businessinsider.com.au

Here are some of the top whiskies on her list.

Bowmore 15 Year Old Darkest

What makes this whisky stand out from the rest is actually its color. It is aged in bourbon and sherry casks for 12 years. During its final 3 years of maturation, it goes into an Oloroso sherry cask, which gives its red cherry color with a chocolate-y smell, slight smoke and earth tones, and a sweet molasses finish.

Port Ellen 9th Release 30 Year Old

This bottle of whisky has among the rarest cask strength. It’s peaty and sweet with lemon grass and smoky pepper with a long medicinal finish. Currently, Port Ellen is on its 14th release; which only gives you an idea of how mature and special this 9th release bottle really is.

Auchentoshan Three Wood

Obviously, it is matured in 3 casks: Olorosso, Pedro Ximenez sherry, and American Bourbon. While this is a non-age statement whisky, it smells of red stone fruits and tastes like brown sugar or treacle with a citrus finish that cuts through its sweetness. It’s among the best whiskies that you can pair with cured meats.

Rosebank 12 Year Old Flora & Fauna

This rare bottle of whisky has a light straw color. It has a sweet smell and a taste of pure honeycomb and herbs with lemon and grass. Since the Rosebank distillery has already closed, this whisky has only limited supply and very difficult to find. It’s a must-try and a bit of a collector’s item.

Aberlour A’bunadh

This strong cask strength whisky is not for those with a faint heart. It has a deep amber color and a nutty-all spice; citrus smell; dark chocolate, raisins, and cherry taste; and a spicy finish. It’s visually appealing as it has a wax seal and a numbered label.

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Having a Hard Time Choosing a Gift for Your Guy?

USL-Diageos-Scotch-Whisky-Gift-Collection

Women can be very complicated that not all men understand them. But try to fit into their shoes when they are looking to buy a gift for their men and you’ll probably learn that men can be just as complicated as well.

Buying gifts for men is one of the most confusing, if not complicated, tasks for women. In fact, some women would say it’s easier to crack Rocket Science! While wallets may seem too casual, giving watch would seem too formal. Clothing and accessories is too main stream and perfumes may send the wrong message. It’s just too difficult to find a good one for an all-occasions gift. This dilemma isn’t only happening to women from daily walks of life, even celebrities are at a loss. Well, fret no more because there’s a perfect gift out there!

Many Bollywood celebrities like Chitrangada Singh and Lisa Haydon chose the USL’s Scotch Whisky Collections to give as a gift to the men of their lives. It can be given not only to your beau or partner, but you can also give it to your male boss, your friend, and even your parents and in-laws.

USL-Diageos-Scotch-Whisky-Gift-Collection

USL-Diageo’s Scotch Whisky Gift Collection. Photo: indianfoodfreak.com

“I believe we have solved the dilemma of gifting for men. Earlier it was a task to find the right gift for the right occasion but the Scotch Whisky Collection is the ideal gift for all occasions. All men appreciate their Scotch whisky and am sure would cherish such a gift,” says Lisa Haydon.

Whether your man is throwing a celebratory party after landing a big deal or just relaxing after a long day’s work, the Scotch Whisky Collection would never go out of style. Whether he is throwing himself a birthday party with his closest friends or just wants to show off his collections at your bar cabinet, Scotch is just the classiest way to do it. In addition to that, each time he would look at his prized Scotch Whisky Collection, he’d always be in awe of your taste in giving gifts!

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The Beginnings of The Lake Distillery and Cumbria

The Lakes Distillery

Paul Currie was in oil and now he’s switched to gold…. Liquid gold!

In his previous job, he sold engine oil to eastern bloc countries shortly after the Berlin wall came down. He also worked for BP in Poland and Russia, dealing with people who want to have a taste of the life in the western world.

Today, he owns the Lakes Distillery and is selling Cumbria around the world — giving whisky fanatics a taste of his product.

The Lakes Distillery was created as a tribute to his father, Harold. At 51, Paul was in his late 20s when he helped his 70 year-old father establish Arran Distillery in the mid-1990s. Harold worked previously for Chivas Regal as managing director and was part of Pernod Ricard Drinks Corporation.

The Lakes Distillery

The Lakes Distillery. Photo by www.pressat.co.uk

Since no one had thought of setting up an independent distillery for years, Paul thought creating one would be fun.

“I think my heart was always in whisky. Dad was in his 70s and needed someone young to do the running round. People thought we were crazy, since then, people have opened new distilleries everywhere,” Paul said.

About 20 years after the launch of the Arran Distillery, Paul realized there’s still much potential in launching another independent distillery. He could’ve established his dream distillery and made it successful. However, he chose Cumbria primarily because of what it represents; the countryside — lakes and mountains. The fact that it is damp also helped. Furthermore, the taste of the product also mattered; but the surroundings and the setting of the distillery are the deciding point for Paul as he travels over to Europe, America, and the Far East to market his product.

“The location offered us an amazing brand. It is absolutely crucial to us. The actual environment was perfect; it’s great water, particularly for whisky; and you don’t want the weather too hot or too cold, you want it to be damp for evaporation of whisky,” Paul said.

“There are 109 distilleries in Scotland and to be 110 was not so exciting. There are three others in England, but none in the north. Somehow the Lakes has a place in the whisky world. It looks like whisky-making country,” Paul added.

Paul lives near the distillery, while his family home is still in Oxfordshire because he didn’t want to disrupt his children’s schooling. But they came up to Cumbria on holidays.

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A Shot of Whiskey and Pickle Juice, Anyone?

Pickleback Shot

In 2004, the Boston Red Sox caught the attention of many people as their first basemen, Kevin Millar, revealed to the media that some of the players drank shots of Jack Daniel’s before the 6th game of the American League Championship Series. Some say it might have been their lucky charm for winning the World Series for the first time since 1918.

The Spirit of Mama Juana

“It was one of those group team things, like shaving our heads last year. What we had was one small Gatorade cup, with a little Jack Daniel’s in it. We passed it around and everyone symbolically drank out of the same cup, because we are a team. It wasn’t as if guys were drunk. Can you imagine Trot Nixon or Jason Varitek or Mike Timlin actually sipping alcohol before a game? No way,” says Millar at that time.

Pedro Martinez, on the other hand, claims that the team didn’t drink Whiskey. He said they drank the Dominican spirit Mama Juana — a spirit made from rum, red wine and aged with herbs and tree bark. “We took a shot of Mama Juana every single game, before the game,” says Martinez in 2013.

Pickleback Shot

pickleback shot, Jack Daniel’s, (c) 2014 Graceland Bar-B-Q

Pickle Back Shot

Whether the stories are true or not, I doubt Steph Curry or Lebron James drinks a shot of booze before a big game. But if they do, they’d probably want to give a pickle back shot a try. Why? That’s because aside from a nice shot of booze, you’d probably reap the healthy benefits of pickle juice! Wait, pickle juice is healthy? You bet! Scientifically speaking, pickle juice is proven to help in relieving muscle cramps quickly.

“The 100% natural ingredients function as a neutral inhibitor which addresses the cramp at the source. It replenishes electrolytes in the body and it contains ten times the electrolytes as most sports drinks,” said Filip Keuppens, the director for Sales and Marketing at The Pickle Juice Company.

Pickle juice has high electrolyte content promotes hydration. It also functions as an anti-diuretic which prevents dehydration when drinking alcohol and helps in the recovery of a hangover the next day.

The Pickle Back Shot is similar to a beer and shot combination; but, instead of beer, it has pickle juice and a shot of whiskey. The whiskey is drunk first, followed by the pickle juice. The name itself represents only the pickle portion of the shot; and because it is enjoyed at the end, they added “back” after the pickle. While some people tweaked the drink by drinking whiskey and having a bite of pickle, you wouldn’t get the same health benefits if you do it this way.

According to Keuppens, “As a chaser, the sweet-and-sour nature of the brine is said to neutralize the burn of the alcohol, and the salt acting as a masking ingredient to counteract the harsh taste of the spirit.”

The shot is believed to be introduced by Reggie Cunningham, a bartender at the Bushwick Country Bar in Williamsburg, Brooklyn in 2006. Contrary to popular belief, he didn’t really invent the drink; rather, he learned it from one of his southern customers.

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Enjoy Irish Coffee: A Whisky-Based Cocktail

Irish Coffee

The Irish Coffee: a delightful combination of sweet, whisky-laced coffee with whipped cream. Simple, indulgent, and very delicious! I bet you’d add it as one of your “comfort” drinks.

In the early 1940s, a man named Joseph Sheridan had made the best decision anyone could make somewhere in the middle of a notoriously cold country of Ireland. He was the very first person to ever mix the Irish whiskey with rich, black coffee. Legend has it that a flight from Shannon Airport got cancelled and Joseph, the local bartender there, decided to provide the freezing passengers comfort by serving a special drink. And oh, did he lift their spirits up!

Even though the drink was first made in Ireland, it became very popular in San Francisco. Stanton Delaplane, an American travel blogger, drank the airport specialty and immediately fell in love with the drink. After many failed attempts and persuasion with bartenders to float the cream in the same way, the Irish Coffee cocktail was finally crafted and included to the menu of the Buena Vista Café in San Francisco during the early 1950s. As what most people say, the rest is history.

How to Make a Perfect Irish Coffee

There are no top secret ingredients when it comes to making an Irish coffee. But contrary to what most people believe, it is actually not as simple as mixing a shot of whisky to a cup of coffee. It is a well-constructed caffeinated drink that should be made with proper care. Dale DeGroff, a renowned mixologist, believes that the “key” to creating a great Irish coffee is how you treat the cream. According to him, it would be best to hand-whisk the cream so that it has the right amount of stiffness to float beautifully at the top of the coffee and the booze.

The secret would be to make sure that the coffee is very hot and the cream is very cold (and most importantly, carefully whipped at the right amount). Whether you put sugar in your coffee or not, it is important here and not only because of the flavor! Without sugar, the cream will not float the way it should be, so don’t attempt to cut back on it. Once crafted, the drink shouldn’t be stirred; the hot drink must be drunk through its cold cream. Warning: you’ll have a killer mustache after every sip.

Irish Coffee

Irish coffee. Image from food.ndtv.com

The Recipe of the Irish Whisky

  • Fill a tall glass with boiling water, leave to stand and pour the water away.
  • Carefully whip the cream until there are no bubbles left and it has just started to thicken and formed ribbons beneath the whisk. Place back in the refrigerator.
  • Dissolve 2 tablespoons of soft brown sugar in 2 tablespoons of hot water in a pan and boil. Add 1 cup of freshly brewed coffee and stir. Remove from hit and stir in 50 ml of Irish whisky.
  • Pour the mixture into the bottom of the pre-heated glass. Take the 50 ml cold unsweetened cream out of the fridge and whisk again. Pour it over the back of the spoon until you hit the rim of the glass to prevent from sinking.
  • Add a little nutmeg over the top and serve.

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EFFEN Vodka Introduces their Limited Edition Bottle

effen vodka

EFFEN Vodka and its partner, 50 cent, have just recently introduced their new limited edition bottle of the premium liquor. As it arrived right in time for Super Bowl 50, the elegant bottle is in a football sleeve textured case. It is stamped with Fifty’s signature and logo as well.

effen vodka

Just in time for game day! Image by dunk360.com

During the press release, 50 Cent said, “EFFEN is the perfect example of LIQUID LUXURY, and it’s taking over. This limited edition football bottle will raise the game for your football party.”

Last year, EFFEN Vodka partnered with 50 Cent, whose business and marketing strategies, influential networks, passion, and high energy levels helped out the brand. Their partnership had already succeeded in introducing EFFEN to legal age fans. The brand was marketed through sponsorships, social media and retail programming, as well as in 50 Cent’s performances, music videos, and network.

According to the Senior Brand Director of Vodka at Beam Suntory, Jason Dolenga, the partnership is just a preview of what’s in store for the people. “50 Cent is one of the hardest-working businessmen out there and has played an integral role in the triple-digit growth of EFFEN Vodka this past year. We’re excited to launch this limited edition football bottle to give our fans a taste of the exciting things to come from EFFEN and 50 Cent in the future.”

The limited edition bottle of EFFEN Vodka is available at selected retailers nationwide this month with an SRP of $35.99 per 750 ml bottle. It is made up of 100% premium wheat through a continuous process of distillation. True to its name, EFFEN Vodka gives out a crisp and smooth feel, creating a clean taste on the mouth. Its stylish rubber sleeve just shows how committed EFFEN is in providing premium vodkas with their modern design.

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David Beckham Promotes Haig Club Scotch Whiskey

Haig Club Whiskey

After retiring from football, he becomes an entrepreneur. David Beckham promoted one of his latest business ventures, the Haig Club Scotch Whiskey, as distillers hosted a dinner party in Shanghai, China last Thursday evening.

The 40-year-old famous star that sported a simple, yet elegant tuxedo went to the upscale party where guests — including big Chinese stars Karen Mok and Chang Chen — are enjoying the sumptuous alcoholic drink.

The Look of David Beckham

The former star of Manchester United looked beyond save as he posed for pictures at the exclusive event in a black suit paired with a crisp white shirt and a black tie. David Beckham looked polished as he completed his look with black brogues, and donned a white pocket square for added finesse. Wearing designer clothes, he scoped his hair up in a retro-style quaff which was put into place using a wet-look gel.

Looking all cool and confident, he promoted his venture without his beautiful wife, Victoria, or any of their children, who stayed home in the UK.

A Family Man, Beckham

On Tuesday, Victoria Beckham, popular in both music and fashion industry, praised their 4-year-old daughter, Harper, on social media after receiving a merit at school. “Excellent reading Harper!!X Good Day at school! #proudmummy X,” she said in the adorable photo which showed Harper’s hand having a fun red sticker.

Diageo and Haig Club

David was joined by his manager and close friend Simon Fuller.

Haig Club Whiskey

Two’s company! David was joined by manager Simon Fuller – who teamed up with consumer goods company Diageo and David to launch the alcoholic beverage – at the bash. Image(c): Imaginechina/REX/Shutterstock

In April 2014, it was announced that Diageo, Beckham, and Fuller teamed up to create and launch Haig Club, a single grain with no-age-statement Scotch whisky. The product is said to be produced from liquid that they’ve sourced from Cameronbridge distillery. The whisky consists of a wide variety of aged whisky from three different casks: first-fill, rejuvenated, and refill Bourbon barrels.

It hasn’t been smooth-sailing for this product, however. Early 2015, the drink’s TV ads, directed by Guy Ritchie, was scrutinized for encouraging underage drinking. People behind Alcohol Concern argued that Beckham appealed to many youngsters, which encourages them to drink alcohol.

Beckham’s camp pointed out that the star has been involved in many campaigns for Kids such as the Sainsbury’s Active Kids campaign that aims to encourage participation in sports. Consequently, the complainants argued that Beckham’s association with drinks brand sent a wring message to the young generation.

But, the big men from the advertising industry rejected the complaint after they came to a consensus that Beckham could no longer be viewed as a role model for the children.

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Vodka from the Deep Ocean?

vodka

The Hawaiian Sea Spirits Distillery and Organic Farm, situated along the slopes of Maui’s Haleakala volcano in Kula, are doing something out of the ordinary: they are taking deep ocean water and turning it into a premium drink!

The Smiths started to experiment with the ocean water in an effort to make an eco-friendly ingredient for vodka that has an exquisite taste. In 2005, they decided to use one of the largest life forces of Maui (the ocean around it) to create a vodka that is unique to their island. They combined organic sugar cane with mineral-rich ocean water that is taken from 3,000 feet below the coast of Kona near the Big Island.

Why they decided to use Ocean Water?

According to Bill Scott, it was the idea of their founder, Shay Smith, to combine the essence of Hawaii and Maui to their products. Being situated in little islands in a large body of water, Hawaii is naturally bound to the ocean. Bill said that they respect how the ocean gives life to the people, which is why they branded their product as “Ocean” as it is the very DNA of their company. They think it was the best way of really showing their love for the ocean.

Desalinizing Water

Their company partnered with Koyo USA, located in Kona. Koyo USA have license and rights for utilizing water that is drawn from over 3,000 feet below the surface of the ocean. The pipe gets water that started as a snowmelt from the North Atlantic arctic region. It would take approximately 2,000 years to reach Kona via the Global Conveyor Belt, a current in the very deep ocean.

vodka

Photo by Jessica Pearl, courtesy of Hawaiian Sea Spirits Distillery.

According to Koyo, they draw this fresh ocean water at a chilly 42 degrees Fahrenheit and utilize reverse osmosis to remove majority of the salts. This process have the ability to take in adequate amount of essential minerals (calcium, magnesium, and potassium), making their water a deep-ocean mineral water.

How does Ocean Water Affect the Quality of the Vodka?

Ocean vodka is comprised of 60% water; therefore, water as an ingredient is very essential. When manufacturing distilled spirits, it is vital to be consistent. Minor variations in the quality of water may be devastating to the products.

Incorporating Sugar Cane

The juice from the sugar cane is collected and filtered than placed on a fermentation process for 3 to 4 days. After fermentation, juice will become a beer which will be heated in a pot until the alcohol is vaporized. The alcohol vapors, in turn, are collected and converted back to liquid form, resulting in a 40% alcohol solution called the “low wines spirit”. This will then be re-distilled resulting in over 193 proof. Finished spirits will then be blended with deep-ocean mineral water to create Ocean vodka.

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