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Sam Miguel
08-20-2007, 04:24 PM
We've got a food thread, why not a drinks thread?

It does not necessarily have to be ALCOHOLIC drinks, juice, tea, others would be welcome as well.

Normally I always have a nive bottle of San Miguel's pale pilsen with a meal. There is just something so refreshing with the way an ice cold beer goes down so well with a wide variety of food. Regardless of whether I am having prime rib in the old Abelardo's at the Philippine Plaza (Sofitel now) or the Rotisserie of the old Manila Hilton (heaven only knows what it is now after so many name changes), or calamares en su tinta with lots of garlic at the old El Comedor in Ermita, or lobster tail sashimi at the Tempura Misono in Hyatt, or heck, even a tapsilog at the original Vivian's or pancit miki-bihon at Manosa in Binondo, nothing beats an ice cold San Miguel beer.

I try not to order those bottomless iced tea things so prevalent in restaurants now. In the first place it isn't even real tea, usually just some tea mix of some kind, lots of sugar, not enough tea, and certainly not enough real lemon. If there was one place to get good bottomless iced tea it was the Club House of the US Emabassy Seafront Club, where the tea was made with real brewed lipton tea and they provided lemon wedges and sugar syrup so you can mix to taste. This always went well with their cheeseburgers, sloppy joes, roastbeef on rye and pepperoni pizza. TGI Friday's used to serve real tea until around the year 1996 or 1997 when they resorted to the mixes. Unless I'm in en establishment that serves real brewed tea I don't order bottomless iced tea anymore.

Among the liquors my two favorites are Stolichnaya vodka and Jack Daniel's bourbon. There's nothing like a good man's drink to truly put any thing to rights.

GHRanger
08-20-2007, 04:56 PM
I too enjoy a regular vodka or red wine.

Pero bago ang lahat -- tandaan niyo ang cardinal rule sa inuman:

Beer then Hard Drink --> Pwede pa.
Hard Drink then Beer --> Pwede ka na pulutin sa sahig
Kung malakas ang inuman --> Kain muna ng madami. Pero huwag litson, taba... sa iba kang rason mahihilo.
Kung di makakain dahil kaunti lang --> Make sure you drink a glass of water in between drinks, lessens the hangover.
Don't Drink and Drive.

I used to have a stocked bar in my parent's home for mixed drinks but I haven't seen it in 1.5 years since I moved out. :D. I'd usually prepare a Kamikaze or a Brazen Hussy (Kamikaze + Triple Sec) for friends at my old bar since it is the easiest and nicest to make. Floors them faster as well.

For Vodka's the best mixer is still Absolute Vodka (blue one.) Makes the best Vodka Tonics as well. Don't think of mixing the other varieties, currant, citron, etc. These drinks are best enjoyed cold or on the rocks.

For Champagne, it's Asti Martini. Nice and smooth and not overly expensive.

JonarSabilano
08-20-2007, 05:08 PM
SAMPUNG UTOS NG MANGINGINOM

1. Huwag makulit habang umiinom.
2. Huwag matakaw sa pulutan.
3. Huwag patagalin ang baso at mayroong naghihintay ng tagay.
4. Huwag lang basta uminom ng uminom; kailangang bumili ka rin.
5. Uminom nang diretso sa tiyan at huwag sa ulo.
6. Huwag biglang mawawala sa inuman, magpaalam kung uuwi na.
7. Magtira ng panglakad kahit hinlalaki ng paa.
8. Huwag matutulog habang umiinom.
9. Siguraduhing sa bahay ang uwi kung lasing na.
10.Huwag matakot sa asawa/kabit/kalaguyo/syota/djowa.

Kid Cubao
08-20-2007, 06:37 PM
back in the days when PM dawn was all over the airwaves, we hated drinking buddies who'd gobble up our pulutan in the blink of an eye, and these we called "don PM's"--short for pulutan monsters.

beer always is fine with me. i prefer the original brew over light any time, except when i just had a full dinner.

as far as hard drinks are concerned, i must admit that i'm a rhum guy deep inside. whiskey is always fine as well, except that it's expensive, and white castle whiskey is not too much to my liking.

Dark Knight
08-20-2007, 07:01 PM
I remember Faces, Whispers and Creekside discos. ;D

Bloody Mary is good kahit na ladies drink pa yun.

atenean_blooded
08-20-2007, 07:20 PM
Beer's okay. I actually like lager more than beer, though (pareho lang dapat yun, pero kapag may dalawang bote, isa nakasulat "beer," isa, "lager," kukunin ko yung lager).

Hard drinks are better. If you don't mind blowing some money on drinks, buy a bottle of scotch, which is always good with just ice.

At parties, we usually just end up mixing what's available until we come up with stuff we enjoy.

A popular choice is taking a glass with some ice, filling a third of it with Cruzan Coconut Rum, and finishing the rest off with Coke or Sarsi. Ilang baso lang, naka cruize kontrol ka na. ;D



GHRanger:

Baliktad pala tayo ng cardinal rule. Yung sa amin,

"Liquor before beer = everything's clear.
Beer before liquor = never been sicker."

:)

christian
08-20-2007, 07:41 PM
back in the days when PM dawn was all over the airwaves, we hated drinking buddies who'd gobble up our pulutan in the blink of an eye, and these we called "don PM's"--short for pulutan monsters.

Sa amin sir iba ang tawag, KUNG-PU Master... Kung Pumulutan, Master! HEHEHE!

flsfnoeraekadad
08-20-2007, 09:46 PM
Mas masarap uminom ng beer pag inunahan mo ng tequila.

And the results... FANTASTIC! ;D

atenean_blooded
08-20-2007, 10:01 PM
Mas masarap uminom ng beer pag inunahan mo ng tequila.

And the results... FANTASTIC! ;D


Trip lang.

Kuha ka ng baso ng malakas na beer, bagsakan mo ng punong shot glass ng tequila na malakas.

Istretyin mo. :)

bluewing
08-20-2007, 11:09 PM
pagdating sa inuman, baduy ako. beer lang talaga ang gusto ko. ayoko ng mga hard drinks. masama lagi ang dating sa akin. kung mag-ha-hard man ako, siguro j. walker lang pero kahit yun, hindi ako masyado enjoy.

sa beer, kahit anong beer pinapatulan ko. kung ano iniinom ng tropa, yun din ako. and unlike my relationship with hard drinks, pagdating sa cerveza, wala akong hangganan. i can go on and on and on (give or take mga 30 minute breaks pag medyo iba na)... i have yet to be knocked out by beer, pero sa hard madalas akong napapatulog.


sa mga resto, mas gusto ko uminom ng juice (pag fresh) or mga shake. kung hindi, tubig na lang.

flsfnoeraekadad
08-20-2007, 11:19 PM
Mas masarap uminom ng beer pag inunahan mo ng tequila.

And the results... FANTASTIC! ;D


Trip lang.

Kuha ka ng baso ng malakas na beer, bagsakan mo ng punong shot glass ng tequila na malakas.

Istretyin mo. :)


Did that in Temple. ;D

2 shot glasses full of Cuervo + 1 bottle SMB Light = WINNER.

atenean_blooded
08-20-2007, 11:32 PM
Mas masarap uminom ng beer pag inunahan mo ng tequila.

And the results... FANTASTIC! ;D


Trip lang.

Kuha ka ng baso ng malakas na beer, bagsakan mo ng punong shot glass ng tequila na malakas.

Istretyin mo. :)


Did that in Temple. ;D

2 shot glasses full of Cuervo + 1 bottle SMB Light = WINNER.


Baligtarin naman.

Isang shot ng beer, ihuhulog sa isang basong tequila.

Tapos ilayo ninyo yung chaser dun sa mokong na uminom. :)

flsfnoeraekadad
08-21-2007, 12:29 AM
Mas masarap uminom ng beer pag inunahan mo ng tequila.

And the results... FANTASTIC! ;D


Trip lang.

Kuha ka ng baso ng malakas na beer, bagsakan mo ng punong shot glass ng tequila na malakas.

Istretyin mo. :)


Did that in Temple. ;D

2 shot glasses full of Cuervo + 1 bottle SMB Light = WINNER.


Baligtarin naman.

Isang shot ng beer, ihuhulog sa isang basong tequila.

Tapos ilayo ninyo yung chaser dun sa mokong na uminom. :)
Bwahahahahahahahahahahah. ;D

danny
08-21-2007, 02:20 AM
Mas masarap uminom ng beer pag inunahan mo ng tequila.

And the results... FANTASTIC! ;D


Trip lang.

Kuha ka ng baso ng malakas na beer, bagsakan mo ng punong shot glass ng tequila na malakas.

Istretyin mo. :)



They call it the Atomic Drop back there at the Third World Cafe(Malate). Buhay pa ba yun?

LION
08-21-2007, 08:07 AM
SAMPUNG UTOS NG MANGINGINOM

1. Huwag makulit habang umiinom.
2. Huwag matakaw sa pulutan.
3. Huwag patagalin ang baso at mayroong naghihintay ng tagay.
4. Huwag lang basta uminom ng uminom; kailangang bumili ka rin.
5. Uminom nang diretso sa tiyan at huwag sa ulo.
6. Huwag biglang mawawala sa inuman, magpaalam kung uuwi na. UWIHI ang tawag namin diyan. ;D
7. Magtira ng panglakad kahit hinlalaki ng paa.
8. Huwag matutulog habang umiinom.
9. Siguraduhing sa bahay ang uwi kung lasing na.
10.Huwag matakot sa asawa/kabit/kalaguyo/syota/djowa.

LION
08-21-2007, 08:15 AM
San Miguel Pale Pilsen.

Johnny Walker Black or Blue (preferably). Have not tried their Gold yet.*

Jacob's Creek or* Yari if I feel like sipping red wine.*

Bollinger champagne* pag nag back 2 back ang San Beda.

Stolichnaya or Absolute vodka.

At Red Horse, Tanduay o Ginebra San Miguel pag naharang ng mga tambay sa kanto namin.* *;D

Kid Cubao
08-21-2007, 10:48 AM
there are 24 bottles of beer in a case, and there are 24 hours in a day. coincidence?

Joescoundrel
08-21-2007, 10:52 AM
There is a song we sing to the tune of a popular Filipino lullaby for those who partake too much of the pulutan.

"Sana'y 'di ulamin... ang aming pulutan... ito ay hindi picnic... ito ay inuman..." ;D

Ginebra San Miguel bilog for me.

San Miguel pale pilsen as well.

irateluvmachine
08-21-2007, 11:39 AM
pag kasama ang mga tomador sa office...red horse or strong ice, light pag medyo matindi na ang amats. very occasionally hard. i'm more of a beer person...

pag kasama ang mga (current) kabanda...red horse, and/or fundador/grand matador...

pag kasama ang mga former bandmates...coke o ice tea. strangely enough, my former bandmates are either teetotalers or mahina talaga sa inuman...

Wang-Bu
08-22-2007, 01:23 PM
Ginebra San Miguel, classic, Blue at Premium, ok lahat, basta Ginebra.

Ice cold San Miguel Beer, Ice cold Red Horse (basta tagay at hindi bote-bote).

Sa imported Smirnoff vodka na 100-proof, ok din ang Johnny Walker Red Label (ewan ko ba bakit nagpapaloko pa sa Black, Blue at kung ano-ano pa ang ibang tao, masarap ang Red).

Imported na beer, Miller Genuine Draft, ewan, basta mas masarap siya para sa akin kaysa sa Budweiser.

JonarSabilano
08-22-2007, 02:00 PM
Nagsimula ako sa San Miguel Pale Pilsen. Bata pa lang ako, pinapatikim na ako ng erpat ko. Pero noong college ko na nahiligan ang beer.

Noong una, puro San Mig Pale lang talaga. Tapos, natikman ko rin 'yung Texquila. Nagkataon kasing sabay kami ng kasama ko sa isang org na kaka-break lang sa mga karelasyon. Niyaya niya ako uminom sa I-Cue sa tapat ng Ateneo. Texquila lang ang beer nila. OK naman ang lasa, pero parang wala na yata sa merkado ngayon.

Nakiuso rin ako sa gin-pomelo. 'Yun lang kasi ang kaya ng bulsa ko kapag bakasyon at walang baon. Hehe.

Tapos, sa huli kong relasyon, natutuhan ko ring uminom ng Cerveza Negra. Umabot sa puntong hindi ako iinom kung hindi Cerveza Negra ang nakahain.

(Pero pramis, masarap ang basi ng Vigan -- makakabili kayo sa presyong PhP 150 sa tiangge sa Lung Center tuwing Linggo. Subukan ninyo. Oks din ang bugnay wine (PhP300, Kultura Filipino) at duhat wine (PhP 150, mga tiangge rin).)

Ngayon, balik sa San Miguel Pale, maliban na lamang kapag niyayaya ng tatay ni GF na mag-Shiraz.

Wang-Bu
08-23-2007, 10:10 AM
Sumubok din po ako ng mga gin-combo Sir Jonar, kaya nga lang sadya yatang iba ang timpla ng katawan ko at ampangit ng tama sa akin ng gin na may halo, mabuti pang straight na lang, o kaya may ilang patak ng kalamansi kung pamatay-talim lang.

Ang gin na hindi ko talaga masikmura 'yung Gilbey's at London Dry. Ewan ko ba, parang sobrang bango nila, para ka ng lumalaklak ng Glade o Pledge o Windex. Ang iba binabahiran ng konting lime juice para daw mawala 'yung ganung amoy, sa panlasa ko naman parang lalong lumalala kapag ganun.

Kapag gin tama na sa akin ang malamig na tubig bilang chaser at yumosi ng Philip, saktong kombinasyon lang para halo ang ginaw ng yosi sa talim ng gin.

atenean_blooded
08-24-2007, 03:32 AM
Masarap naman ang gin kahit yelo lang ang kahalo ;D

Kung ayaw ng gin, vodka na lang. May mga murang vodka.

(Sabi sa akin ng kaibigan ko, kung idaan daw ang kahit cheap na vodka sa filter paper--yung ginagamit sa pang-brew ng coffee--nang ilang beses, magiging mala-Grey Goose na raw yung sarap. Hindi ko pa nasusubukan.)

flsfnoeraekadad
08-24-2007, 06:28 AM
Naaalala ko ang mga makabag-damdaming inuman naming mga magkakaklase sa isang lugar na tinatawag na Green Place sa harap ng Sports Com at katabi ng Br. Andrew Gonzalez Hall.

bluewing
08-24-2007, 08:59 AM
tamarind shake sa Abe. sarap.

JonarSabilano
08-24-2007, 09:10 AM
Masarap naman ang gin kahit yelo lang ang kahalo ;D

Kung ayaw ng gin, vodka na lang. May mga murang vodka.

(Sabi sa akin ng kaibigan ko, kung idaan daw ang kahit cheap na vodka sa filter paper--yung ginagamit sa pang-brew ng coffee--nang ilang beses, magiging mala-Grey Goose na raw yung sarap. Hindi ko pa nasusubukan.)


Parang na-feature na sa MythBusters ang filter-paper technique na 'yan. Di ko nga lang natatandaan ang resulta.

Joescoundrel
08-24-2007, 09:15 AM
When we were in the High School we used to sneak off to the heavy tree area that led to the Jesuit Residence to partake of vodka and orange juice. It was something we'd do once or twice a week at the end of the day. The best part is that the thing did not leave off the "amoy chico" odor, so even if we ran into a security guard, janitor or even teacher, we could simply say we were just hanging out.

Joescoundrel
08-27-2007, 01:48 PM
Is the Merlot craze over?

danny
08-28-2007, 05:02 PM
Got to get a bottle of Stella Artois. ;)

Joe, Merlot craze back home? Why Merlot?

Joescoundrel
08-29-2007, 09:44 AM
^Stella Artois, a good beer. 8)

Danny, actually the Merlot "craze" started over in the (where else...) US. Sometime toward the end of 1998 Merlot was on the up and up as far as consumption in American restaurants as reported by GQ food critic Alan Richman. The craze reached its zenith when the movie "Sideways" came out and made a Hollywood leading man out of character actor Paul Giamata (hope I got that surname right). Apparently the craaze has tapered off a bit although Merlot is still the most popular wine on the list of major restaurants, bars and private collections in the US, again according to Richman.

As with all crazes in the US the Merlot thingie eventually made its way to our beloved Islands. Of course Pinoys are not typically wine drinkers and a lot of the people who drink the stuff did so only because it was a "trendy" thing. Grape variety-as-mindless trend, how typically Pinoy. It seemed like every yuppie was ordering the stuff in the tony bars of Makati, The Fort and Eastwood every pay day.

Personally I was never a big fan of Merlot. I found it wanting in character, in overall kick. It was not as robust as Cabernet Sauvignon, not as velvety as Pinot Noir, not as rich and earthy as classic Bordeux, and not as spirited as the Barollos. It seemed to be the Porsche Cayman of the wone world: too middle ground and too wanting to please everybody. It simply didn't work for me. I couldn't drink it with a prime rib or a steak because it was often overwhelmed by the meat, couldn't have it with a burger because it felt too rich for ground beef, didn't work with fish or chicken because it in turn overpowered those, don't even think about mixing it with traditional cuisines from Southeast Asia and the Subcontinent.

Incredibly enough it was perfect with, of all things, my homemade pork adobo...

danny
09-11-2007, 01:45 AM
For Southeast Asian cuisine, I find Shiraz/Syrah a bit more appropriate. Bold and fruity at the same time which makes is a very versatile wine. Not to mention that Shiraz can be combined with other varieties to* cater to different taste buds.* Although Shiraz is not Cabernet, I can live with this variety and pair it with so many types of food.* *;D

Pork adobo and Merlot sounds interesting. :D

For our kind of food, beer works better though. Besides , beer and food pairing is also coming of age. Pinoys may not be wine drinkers, but we should at least be among the best beer connoisseurs in the world.

For dessert wine, I recommend any Canadian Ice Wine. Ahhhh.. the good life.

Joescoundrel
09-16-2007, 04:52 PM
Danny, actually you could even use the Merlot as a marinade. I'd say 1/3 cup of Merlot for every half-kilo of pork, marinated at least two hours at room temperature and at least six hours if refrigerated. 8)

Shiraz does make a nice complement to the guisine of Southeast Asia, has just that right blend of kick, aroma and body to go with the merry mix of flavors, textures and condiments of Southeast Asian foods.

atenean_blooded
09-16-2007, 07:35 PM
Joe's right about merlot making for great marinade. It also makes for some interesting sauces. I once braised ox tail in Merlot, and when it was quite tender decided to sear the ox tail in an oven, with some shallots soaking in sweet balsamic vinegar and vegetables. I took the merlot and reduced it into a glaze of sorts for the ox tail, and it was kick-ass.

For a hearty meal like that, of course, I usually enjoy pairing a dark beer or a rather robust cabernet sauvignon.

(For those of you in the States, especially in the San Francisco area, stock up on the beer from the Beach or Park Chalet called "Riptide Red." Nice and dark, sweet enough, but not girly at all. Goes great with anything roasted or grilled.)

Sam Miguel
09-28-2007, 09:28 AM
Are there still hard and fast rules in the wine world i.e. red for meats and white for fish / poultry?

atenean_blooded
09-28-2007, 10:31 AM
Not really. The only "real" hard-and-fast "rule" I have is "if you like it, drink it."

Of course, there are "generally accepted" ways of pairing food and drink, such as what you pointed out. But then again, I think it depends largely on whether or not the person preparing the food or drinks thinks the flavors work together.

Joescoundrel
09-28-2007, 02:58 PM
Are there still hard and fast rules in the wine world i.e. red for meats and white for fish / poultry?


This is still generally a good rule of thumb just in case you get stuck in a food-wine conundrum.

However there are other things you may want to keep in mind when it comes to food and wine pairings. A-Blood's tip above is generally all you need to know: if you like to it then indeed by all means drink it.

Other things to keep in mind:

1) Its a flavor thing: think of it not in absolute terms but in flavor and taste terms, i.e. a light meal should go with a light wine, a robust meal with a robust wine. Let us say you are having a delicate mustard-poached chicken then you may pair a light non-white wine such as a White Zinfandel or young Sauvignon; a roast porkloin may go with a non-red wine such as a good Chardonnay.

2) Its a texture thing: simple unadorned or minimally adorned food such as deep fried turkey with homemade gravy is a pretty hefty meal in terms of texture of the meat and the thickness of the gravy, allowing it to take reds like Pinot Noir. In the same way a simple pan-braised rabbit quarter with olives and capers can go well with an older Sauvignon Blanc.

When all else fails just go with the strong stuff and plenty of it. When everyone is drunk either everything will taste fantastic or they couldn't care less. ;D

ewe_rach
10-04-2007, 11:01 PM
sir(s), paano mag-mix ng screwdriver? paturo naman po may konting salo-salo dito sa bahay on saturday. ;D

Sam Miguel
10-12-2007, 04:11 PM
The basic SCREWRDIVER recipe: equal parts orange juice and vodka.

I rather like freshly squeezed orange juice and Stolichnaya vodka.

Just do NOT use pwedered juice mixes, too sweet and too powdery.

Kid Cubao
10-12-2007, 07:04 PM
ewe_rach, if you can get a shaker, so much the better. it's much better to shake, not stir :) go to gourdo's, a basic set will do.

Sam Miguel
10-31-2007, 04:19 PM
I've heard there is a cocktail called BLOWJOB.

What the heck is it?

Kid Cubao
11-01-2007, 01:55 PM
kamote, i learned about this cocktail in channel 47 or the lifestyle network ;D

ang naalala ko talaga sa pag-inom nito is you should clench the shot glass with your teeth and knock it back without using your hands. equal parts vodka and kahlua, topped with cream. pagkatapos mong inumin yan at luminya na yung cream sa nguso at bibig mo, maiintindihan mo kung bakit BJ ang tawag dyan ;)

salsa caballero
11-01-2007, 08:41 PM
There's actually a bar in Angeles, along Fields Avenue, that specializes in BJ's...If I'm not mistaken, it's actually called BJ's...

ewe_rach
11-03-2007, 03:11 PM
I've heard there is a cocktail called BLOWJOB.

What the heck is it?



sir meron nga ding SCREAMING ORGASM. baka narinig mo na or alam mo na.

Sam Miguel
03-25-2008, 01:56 PM
Ah yes, summer in the tropics.

Aside form an ice cold San Miguel beer there are other nice hot-weather treats for one and all.

Take the mint julep, one of the best things to ever come out of Bluegrass country.

Toss in half a cup of any good Bourbon (even Jack Daniel's would be good) into a tall glass or tumbler filled with rough cracked ice. Toss in a half cup of Evian water or in our case Hidden Spring mineral water. 1 teaspoon of refined sugar. Washed sugar is alright as well, do not use brown sugar or it will turn too oakey. Four or five fresh mint leaves, slightly crumpled in your hand then tossed in. Do not crumple them silly. Stir or shake well. (Carefully cover of course or toss into a proper shaker if you will shake it)

Joescoundrel
09-09-2008, 08:48 AM
Rainy days are martini days.

Two ounces Gordon's London Dry.

One ounce dry vermouth.

One ounce Stolichnaya.

Shake well with rough crumbled ice, about 45 seconds up and down.

Lemon peel rubbed on the rim and then plopped into the glass.

Pour in the shaken drink.

Hold the olives, this isn't a salad or pizza.

pio_valenz
09-19-2008, 06:33 PM
Masyadong komplikado naman lahat ito. Beer na lang.

jpmalpas
09-20-2008, 02:30 PM
Kapag beer, gusto ko San Mig Light lang, kasi kapag Red Horse, medyo nabibigatan yung tyan ko, parang nakakasuka. Pero kapag hard, gusto ko Chivas Regal! The best! :D

Joescoundrel
10-30-2008, 11:19 AM
I would heartily recommend the revived SAN MIGUEL ALL MALT PREMIUM PALE PILSEN, available at better establishments and only for the Oktoberfest 120.

JonarSabilano
10-30-2008, 05:48 PM
^ I like this beer. Got a bottle at Oysterboy over the weekend.

There's also this gallery called "Shotlist" at Kalayaan Ave., QC, which serves a full-bodied, sweetish German beer whose name I cannot pronounce. PhP80 for a 500-mL bottle. Warning: as with most Teutonic brews, it's got a higher alcohol content than usual. I call it Red Horse and Cerveza Negra combined.


Edited to add: The German beer's name is Oettinger. I'm getting a case from a colleague of mine within the month.

isa-teresa
11-15-2008, 11:30 AM
I'm a cocktails person, but I enjoy beer when I'm just relaxing in a bar. I enjoy mojito and margarita, but I love the mixed drinks of Tides Bar and Central (here in BF Homes, Paranaque). They have drinks like Bad Boy, Bad Girl and Bad Trip. Tides has Red Tide, Mojito and Mango Margarita (with Alize, of course). If I'm tipsy already, I end the night with SanMig light with a cherry shot. ;)

When drinking at a friend's and we're tamad to mix complicated cocktails, I enjoy Baileys mint and Absolut Mandarin with Sprite/7Up ;D

thadzonline
11-15-2008, 11:42 AM
when I read the thread title, akala ko this could be another joescoundrel thread....mali pala ako kasi si Sam Miguel nagsimula..lol....a Vesper Martini please ;D

Joescoundrel
11-15-2008, 11:18 PM
^ Bai, who but SAM MIGUEL would start a DRINKS thread...? ;D

mighty_lion
11-16-2008, 12:29 AM
My personal favorite up to now. BANGENGE sa Pier One.* Bangenge ka talaga pauwi. Its like a long island ice tea na x3 sa tapang.* ;D

danny
11-16-2008, 01:00 AM
^ Bai, who but SAM MIGUEL would start a DRINKS thread...? ;D


hehehe.

Joe, ano ba masasabi mo sa mga "Corkless Wines" at yung mga nasa mala-Tetra Pak na ginagawa ng mg Aussie? ;D

Wang-Bu
11-19-2008, 11:27 AM
Bilog na lang kasi, mura na tama pa kagad, wala pang sakit ng ulo kinabukasan. ;D

bchoter
11-19-2008, 12:33 PM
Sa mga uneven flight of stairs ng Pier One di ka pa nakakainom parang bangenge ka na. Kaya pag bangenge ka na tapos akyat-baba ka sa hagdan kala mo normal ka :D

I don't know if it's all in the head pero parang mas mabilis akong tamaan sa "de color" kesa sa "stainless". Ex. I take lambanog better than Matador. Or bilog over Tanduay.

danny
11-20-2008, 04:04 AM
Bilog na lang kasi, mura na tama pa kagad, wala pang sakit ng ulo kinabukasan. ;D


Lambanog OK ako. Tapos beer ang pang agahan. ;D

Joescoundrel
11-20-2008, 08:54 AM
^ Bai, who but SAM MIGUEL would start a DRINKS thread...? ;D


hehehe.

Joe, ano ba masasabi mo sa mga "Corkless Wines" at yung mga nasa mala-Tetra Pak na ginagawa ng mg Aussie? ;D


Danny I believe they are going to the resealable bottle caps more often now, although I confess I have seen very little of the "tetra pack" Boomer wines.

Apparently the resealable bottle caps are not only easier to handle that the traditional cork, they really do actually keep the wines fresher for a longer time. Wines notorious for not keeping well for too long such as Australian Syrah, Zinfandel and Cabernet are now better able to keep their freshness for a longer time thanks to the resealable bottle caps.

My personal advice though: the minute you open that blasted bottle FINISH IT! ;D

canmaker
11-20-2008, 05:51 PM
yan ba yung "weissen" or "wheat" beer? masarap nga yan ...

=====



^ I like this beer. Got a bottle at Oysterboy over the weekend.

There's also this gallery called "Shotlist" at Kalayaan Ave., QC, which serves a full-bodied, sweetish German beer whose name I cannot pronounce. PhP80 for a 500-mL bottle. Warning: as with most Teutonic brews, it's got a higher alcohol content than usual. I call it Red Horse and Cerveza Negra combined.


Edited to add: The German beer's name is Oettinger. I'm getting a case from a colleague of mine within the month.

mangtsito
11-20-2008, 10:55 PM
Beer lang.

Beer Brand. ;D

danny
11-21-2008, 02:40 AM
Danny I believe they are going to the resealable bottle caps more often now, although I confess I have seen very little of the "tetra pack" Boomer wines.

Apparently the resealable bottle caps are not only easier to handle that the traditional cork, they really do actually keep the wines fresher for a longer time. Wines notorious for not keeping well for too long such as Australian Syrah, Zinfandel and Cabernet are now better able to keep their freshness for a longer time thanks to the resealable bottle caps.

My personal advice though: the minute you open that blasted bottle FINISH IT! ;D



Now I see why the Aussies started this one. Pero naman pare, mas makakatipid nga ako kung resealable Syrah and Zin...mas tatagal...gusto mo naman laklakin ko kaagad. Hahahahaha! ;D

Thanks for the info, pre.

JonarSabilano
11-21-2008, 07:59 PM
yan ba yung "weissen" or "wheat" beer?* masarap nga yan ...

=====



^ I like this beer. Got a bottle at Oysterboy over the weekend.

There's also this gallery called "Shotlist" at Kalayaan Ave., QC, which serves a full-bodied, sweetish German beer whose name I cannot pronounce. PhP80 for a 500-mL bottle. Warning: as with most Teutonic brews, it's got a higher alcohol content than usual. I call it Red Horse and Cerveza Negra combined.


Edited to add: The German beer's name is Oettinger. I'm getting a case from a colleague of mine within the month.



Di ko alam. Pero here are some pics. I've only tasted the blue variant.

http://i21.ebayimg.com/05/i/000/88/3c/cbf8_1.JPG
http://southbound.ph/blog/wp-content/photos/oldmanila/oldmanila-oettinger.jpg

danny
11-26-2008, 03:25 AM
I found this chart somewhere:



There are two primary types of beer, Ales and Lagers. The primary distinction is the temperature at which the beer is fermented. Ales are fermented at higher temperatures 65-75°F, and Lagers are fermented must colder at about 46-55°F.

The second distinction is the type of yeast that is used in the fermentation process. Ales generally use top fermenting yeast. This means that the yeast floats on the surface for the first few days and then settles on the bottom. Lagers use bottom fermenting yeast, which does not float to the surface before settling.

There is a third type of beer that far less common than Ales or Lagers, and that is the Lambic. True Lambic is only brewed in the Payottenland region of Belgium. In Ales and Lagers the yeast is specially cultivated for the fermentation. Lambic is fermented by wild yeast. This means that the beer is exposed to the Belgian air which contains wild yeast and bacteria.

Among Ales and Lagers there are many, many different beers. See the beer articles for in depth information on many of these beers. For now the hierarchy of many types of beer is shown below.



http://drinkingbeer.net/images/AleChart.gif



http://drinkingbeer.net/images/LagerChart.gif


Anong category ba ang mga beer natin sa Pinas. Yung San Miguel Pale Pilsen lang ang alam ko. Yung iba?

At anong beer ang masarap sa kung anong pagkain? Ang alam ko lang sa beer, kapag lasing ka, kahit ano uubra. ;D

Sam Miguel
12-07-2008, 08:01 AM
^^^ Danny, I think all of our local beers except of course Cerveza Negra are primarily pilseners and lagers. Even the so-called strong beers like Red Horse and Colt 45 are essentially pilsens and lagers that happen to have a higher alcohol content. The main selling point of all Philippine beers is that they have more hops (and thus more of that "beer-y" flavor) and it shows in the right kind of sourness/bitterness that seems to chase down each quaff of our beers here.

JonarSabilano
03-12-2009, 01:00 PM
I'm sort of craving for a Whiskey Sour right now. Anyone know any bars which serve this drink? So far I've only tried the Whiskey Sour at Sidebar in El Pueblo. Thanks.

fujima04
03-12-2009, 08:03 PM
Sa mga beer-lover, try ninyo ang Corona Extra. A good alternative sa San Mig Light. Normally pag in-order siya ay may lemon na naka-suksok sa nguso ng bote. Push it inside the bottle and sarap ng combination.

Ok din ang Stella Artois at yung 1668. Oag wala talaga, Heikenen.

Para naman sa mga hard ang gusto, try ninyo ang Bee Hive (Brandy). Suwabe kahit ice lang.

Meron pa kami isang iniinom kung tawagin ay BULLFROG. I think it is a combination of rhum, tequila, red bull at certain blue liquid which I forgot the name. Ok ito at walang hangover kahit sandamakmak mainom mo.

For ladies naman, Bacardi Breezer at Smirnoff Ice ang masarap.

Joescoundrel
03-15-2009, 08:06 AM
I'm sort of craving for a Whiskey Sour right now. Anyone know any bars which serve this drink? So far I've only tried the Whiskey Sour at Sidebar in El Pueblo. Thanks.


Best whiskey sour I've had in the Ortigas area is at the Linden Suites bar at their mezzanine.

JonarSabilano
03-15-2009, 10:43 PM
I'm sort of craving for a Whiskey Sour right now. Anyone know any bars which serve this drink? So far I've only tried the Whiskey Sour at Sidebar in El Pueblo. Thanks.


Best whiskey sour I've had in the Ortigas area is at the Linden Suites bar at their mezzanine.


Thanks for the tip. Will try it next time I'm in the area.

Joescoundrel
03-16-2009, 05:03 PM
^ Pare, just tell the barkeep to garnish it only with a cherry, he tends to get carried away with orange wedges, lemon rinds and the like. And tell him to make sure the blasted glass he'll put it in is chilled properly and not just placed for 30 seconds over the ice in the bin.

Speaking of glasses, I prefer mine in a rocks glass or a sour glass and not a martini stem, but that's just me.

danny
01-31-2010, 03:46 AM
I'm sort of craving for a Whiskey Sour right now. Anyone know any bars which serve this drink? So far I've only tried the Whiskey Sour at Sidebar in El Pueblo. Thanks.


Darn. Buhay pa ba Sidebar? Na-miss ko ito nung nabasa ko ulit post mo.

Anyway, this is why I like living here.

Product Catalogue (http://www.bcliquorstores.com/product-catalogue#type%3DBeer%26order%3DASC)

The choices are so freaking crazy! Just tell me the beer or wine and I can drink it for you guys. ;D


Para sa mga Anarkista diyan tulad ng kasama kong si Toti Mendiola, pre ito sa iyo!

http://www.bcliquorstores.com/files/product/image/317479.jpg

danny
04-15-2010, 09:00 AM
Time for me to try a new grape variety.

For reds, I normally go for Shiraz or Merlot and some varietal combination of Cabernet. I usually prefer Riesling or Pinot Grigio/Pinot Gris for white wine.

Few varieties but it took me a while to pick the best wine that I will enjoy. Now there's a new buzz around town, Malbec from Argentina.

I am on a hunt for the best Malbec for my taste.

LION
04-15-2010, 09:32 AM
Time for me to try a new grape variety.

For reds, I normally go for Shiraz or Merlot and some varietal combination of Cabernet. I usually prefer Riesling or Pinot Grigio/Pinot Gris for white wine.

Few varieties but it took me a while to pick the best wine that I will enjoy. Now there's a new buzz around town, Malbec from Argentina.

I am on a hunt for the best Malbec for my taste.


Danny, if you're lusting for a Malbec try to look for Argentinian and French brands. It's quite hard to find in other countries and there are only few wineries in California that make it. Malbec wine is almost always highly rated. Do let me know if you've experienced it.

Meantime, i'll stick to my Los Boldos Cabernet Sauvignon Grand Cru 2006.

Sam Miguel
11-27-2012, 10:46 AM
How to enjoy your whisky–especially if it’s the Scottish kind

One shouldn’t rush the experience, says Darren Hosie of Pernod Ricard, makers of the famous Glenlivet malt

By Jovic Yee

Philippine Daily Inquirer

11:04 pm | Monday, November 26th, 2012

HOSIE says mixing whisky with other liquors should complement and not hide the flavors that were aged to perfection.

In the highlands of Scotland, one region has been known to produce the best whisky in the world since the early 1800s. The Glenlivet region has been home to the whisky and distillery of the same name.

As the first legal distillery in that part of Scotland, Glenlivet was much-admired, such that many distilleries went to great lengths to reproduce the same whisky product and even add the word Glenlivet after their own distillery’s name.

But a legal ruling in 1884 said that only the original single malt could be named “The Glenlivet.”

While still leading the whisky industry for more than 200 years, Glenlivet acknowledges that there has been a change in how whisky, particularly single malt, is now consumed.

Pernod Ricard regional mentoring manager for Asia Pacific Darren Hosie attributes this mostly to consumer behavior.

“In the past, whisky would have been consumed straight from the pot, and that could vary quite dramatically in quality and flavor,” Hosie said. “But we are very fortunate to live in a time where whiskies are of the highest quality and consistency, and benefit from a very careful and selective maturation process.”

Depending on one’s preference, The Glenlivet’s 12-, 15- and 18-year-old whisky can be had on the rocks or with water.

Something new

Nowadays, he said, drinkers are always looking for something new and of high quality.

“If they enjoy The Glenlivet 12 years old, they may want to try The Glenlivet 15 years old French Oak Reserve. We [at Glenlivet] need to adapt and offer something new and high-quality to our fans. One of the great things about malt whisky drinkers is that they love to go on a journey of flavors, and single malts offer this.”

A whisky drinker himself, Hosie said that in his travels he had seen many ways by which whisky is enjoyed. Drinking whisky is a matter of preference, he noted. He himself enjoys his whisky in two ways—on the rocks or with water.

Whenever he’s in Asia where it’s usually hot and humid, Hosie prefers to have his whisky with a few cubes of ice. But when he’s at home, he just adds some water to his whisky and lets the water “open up the whisky and gently release the lovely, soft and complex aromas.”

Aged to perfection

Although he does not discourage mixing whisky with other liquors, he said it should complement the whisky and not hide the flavors that were aged to perfection.

“A mixed drink that I enjoy, especially on hot days, is a high-ball glass with some ice and a measure of Chivas Regal 12 years, topped with ginger ale and garnished with a slice of lime,” Hosie said.

Traditionally, whisky has been thought of as a drink that you can have before and after dinner. Nowadays, Hosie said, any time is the best time to enjoy whisky.

“The complexity of the flavors in The Glenlivet makes it an ideal whisky for enjoying with food.”

First-time whisky drinkers shouldn’t rush the experience, he said. “It is important to remember when approaching whisky for the first time that the flavors and aromas about to be experienced have taken many years to create and are very complex.”

Add a few drops of water, he said, and have a nose and taste. Then, add a few more drops until one hits the perfect whisky spot—then drink away.

Sam Miguel
01-09-2013, 08:52 AM
A spirited year — or was it a century?

By Jason Wilson, Dec 18, 2012 06:45 PM EST

The Washington Post Published: December 19

When I reflect on the year in spirits, I wonder if I am looking back at 2012 or 1912. I mean, just the other evening, I was pouring an aperitif from a bottle of the bitter French gentian liqueur Suze while I read the newspaper. (Yes, a print edition.) It was Pablo Picasso’s 1912 collage “Verre et bouteille de Suze” come to life on my kitchen table.

Suze, created in 1885, has been a French cafe standard for more than a decade, owned by giant Pernot Ricard, but it has been absent in the United States until this year.

Suze wasn’t the only trip back to another century in 2012. In fact, Suze wasn’t even the first previously unavailable French aperitif to reappear.

In the spring, I got my first taste of the odd, biblical-ish-named byrrh. Byrrh is a quinquina, a red-wine-based, low-proof aperitif with a measure of quinine made from a 125-year-old Languedoc-Roussillon recipe. Close in taste to Dubonnet, byrrh has richer, more portlike aromas and flavors — notably ripe berries and herbs — and a balancing bitterness to the fruit. I mixed it with cognac and kirsch in the old-timey Byrrh Cocktail, one of my favorite drinks of the year.

I spent so much time thinking about the 19th century in 2012, I’m surprised I didn’t sprout mutton chops.

One exciting new cocktail ingredient is Swedish punsch, a blend of batavia arrack, sugar, spices and sometimes rum, citrus or tea. It’s a folk favorite in Sweden, often served during the winter with the country’s traditional Thursday pea soup. Kronan Swedish Punsch, newly imported by Haus Alpenz, is the first version of the spirit we’ve seen in the States in a long, long time. It was amazing in cocktails like the Diki-Diki (Calvados, Swedish punsch, grapefruit juice).

Then there is kummel, distilled from caraway seed, cumin and fennel by Combier, which has been making liqueurs in the Loire Valley since 1834. Kummel’s funky, pungent spicy-sweet aromas and flavors feel pre-modern, elemental. My tasting notes: “Wow. We are not in a world of Justin Bieber and Walmart and whipped-cream vodka anymore.”

Yet perhaps one of the most auspicious product launches of the year was Pierre Ferrand’s Dry Curacao Ancienne Method, a true curacao from a 19th-century recipe that’s similar to Grand Marnier or Mandarine Napoleon, with some aged cognac added to the blend. But the 19th-century recipe is much spicier and more complex — and, frankly, more old-fashioned — than the others.

Of course, there were also some more contemporary flavors to talk about. Sales of American rye whiskey surged, thanks in part to big-brand releases this year from Wild Turkey and Knob Creek. Enthusiasts discovered the joys of Japanese whiskeys. And port wine continued to reinvent itself as a cocktail ingredient, which I totally approve of, as long as it means that more fresh, fruity, new-wave ports like Warre’s Otima 10-year-old and Noval Black, both priced around $20, come onto the market.

These were some of the other deep, philosophical questions we pondered this year in the Spirits column:

■ Is 2012 the year we finally put to rest the question of “manly” drinks vs. “girly” drinks? Perhaps not, but the new local chapter of Ladies United for the Preservation of Endangered Cocktails, or LUPEC DC, a society of more than a dozen female craft bartenders in the District, certainly made the case that shots of rye and Fernet Branca are now “ladies’” drinks.

■ Is grapefruit juice simply the best cocktail mixer? Well, taste something like the delicious 866 recipe we published in April (with aquavit, Campari and grapefruit, and a sprig of dill), and you decide.

■ Is there a lonelier or more depressing spirits “occasion” than drinking from the hotel mini-bar? No. (Unless you check into one very, very expensive hotel.)

For my last cocktail of the year, I’d like to offer a variation on a trendy cocktail that’s been popping up on menus across the country: the “White” Negroni. One reason the “White” Negroni is trendy is that it calls for any one of three gentian-based aperitif liqueurs — Suze, Salers and Aveze — that entered the market in 2012.

Well, you know what we say about “threes” around here. Clearly, by the laws of lifestyle journalism, gentian aperitif liqueurs are a certifiable trend. Which means this Negroni is a perfect way to enjoy as you celebrate our year ’12 — whichever ’12 feels right to you.

Wilson is the editor of TableMatters.com. Follow him on Twitter: @boozecolumnist

Sam Miguel
03-21-2013, 01:59 PM
Drink in southwest France

By Dave McIntyre, Mar 19, 2013 07:05 PM EDT

The Washington Post Published: March 20

Southwest France is a bit off the beaten track, in travel and in wine. When wine lovers go to France — and by that I mean the French shelves at our local wine store — we gravitate toward Burgundy, Bordeaux, Champagne and the Rhone Valley. The hipsters among us long for the Loire, while more old-fashioned enogeeks reach for Alsace. Most of us don’t get to the southwest, which is too bad, because the wines can be as delicious as the scenery is spectacular.

So the next time you feel like traveling by corkscrew, ask your retailer to take you to Irouleguy, Fronton, Madiran or Jurancon. You’ll taste unfamiliar grapes such as negrette, tannat and fer servadou, reds that produce wine at once perfumed and rugged. Gros and petit manseng produce aromatic whites that range from dry and delicate to unctuously sweet.

These aren’t the stylish wines of classed-growth Bordeaux chateaux, nor do they have the sublime luxury of premier cru Burgundy. But they are honest, tasting as though they were grown and produced in a particular place instead of according to a recipe. They are what some people might call “weeknight wines,” because they are inexpensive and uncomplicated. You don’t need to worry about which foods to match with them; almost anything works. They won’t take you too far out of your comfort zone. Most are blended with familiar grapes such as cabernet franc, malbec and syrah.

And it’s fun to say Irouleguy (ee-ROO-luh-ghee). That appellation name is one of the easier words to pronounce on the labels of the excellent Domaine Brana. The wine names reflect the Basque influence of the region; they include the Ohitza red blend, made from tannat that’s tamed with 20 percent cabernet franc.

Exploring southwestern France gives me an excuse to consult my favorite travel primer, “Wine Grapes: A Complete Guide to 1,368 Vine Varieties, Including Their Origins and Flavours,” by Jancis Robinson, Julia Harding and Jose Vouillamoz (HarperCollins, 2012), more an encyclopedic tome than a pocket travel guide, to be sure.

Tannat, for example, is known for its high tannin (the mouth-puckering, drying factor in red wine), though its name may refer to its dark color. Micro-oxygenation, the modern technique of bubbling small amounts of air into young wine to soften the tannins, was developed in Madiran, the appellation most known for tannat.

Fer servadou, or simply fer, derives from the Latin word for wild, and this grape is the genetic grandparent of carmenere, now popular in Chile. It shines at Domaine du Cros in Marcillac, an appellation that enjoys climatic influence of both the Mediterranean and the Atlantic. Negrette, as its name suggests, is another dark-colored grape, though more aromatic and less brooding than tannat. It is blended successfully with syrah, cabernet sauvignon and malbec at Chateau Bouissel in Fronton. While fer servadou may be native to southwestern France, negrette is thought to have been brought back from the Crusades by the Knights Templar.

If some of these grape names sound familiar, you might be hearing their Virginia accent. Tannat and fer servadou were planted in the 1990s by vintners eager to experiment with grape varieties that could ripen well in Virginia’s humid climate and contribute color and tannin to its sometimes pallid red wines. Today they show up in wines produced by Chrysalis, Hillsborough and Fabbioli Cellars in Loudoun County, as well as Delaplane Cellars in Fauquier County and Horton Vineyards in Orange County. Varietally labeled tannat can be quite good in Virginia.

Virginia is also making nice wine from petit manseng, a floral white grape that survives well against humidity and ripens with high acidity and sugar levels. In France, the grape plays a minor supporting role to gros manseng in the white wines of Jurancon. Those range from dry, fruity whites to unctuously sweet dessert wines.

With their combination of history, geography and ethnic culture in the glass, the wines of southwest France are too delicious to leave off your travel itinerary.

Sam Miguel
03-21-2013, 01:59 PM
Drink in southwest France

By Dave McIntyre, Mar 19, 2013 07:05 PM EDT

The Washington Post Published: March 20

Southwest France is a bit off the beaten track, in travel and in wine. When wine lovers go to France — and by that I mean the French shelves at our local wine store — we gravitate toward Burgundy, Bordeaux, Champagne and the Rhone Valley. The hipsters among us long for the Loire, while more old-fashioned enogeeks reach for Alsace. Most of us don’t get to the southwest, which is too bad, because the wines can be as delicious as the scenery is spectacular.

So the next time you feel like traveling by corkscrew, ask your retailer to take you to Irouleguy, Fronton, Madiran or Jurancon. You’ll taste unfamiliar grapes such as negrette, tannat and fer servadou, reds that produce wine at once perfumed and rugged. Gros and petit manseng produce aromatic whites that range from dry and delicate to unctuously sweet.

These aren’t the stylish wines of classed-growth Bordeaux chateaux, nor do they have the sublime luxury of premier cru Burgundy. But they are honest, tasting as though they were grown and produced in a particular place instead of according to a recipe. They are what some people might call “weeknight wines,” because they are inexpensive and uncomplicated. You don’t need to worry about which foods to match with them; almost anything works. They won’t take you too far out of your comfort zone. Most are blended with familiar grapes such as cabernet franc, malbec and syrah.

And it’s fun to say Irouleguy (ee-ROO-luh-ghee). That appellation name is one of the easier words to pronounce on the labels of the excellent Domaine Brana. The wine names reflect the Basque influence of the region; they include the Ohitza red blend, made from tannat that’s tamed with 20 percent cabernet franc.

Exploring southwestern France gives me an excuse to consult my favorite travel primer, “Wine Grapes: A Complete Guide to 1,368 Vine Varieties, Including Their Origins and Flavours,” by Jancis Robinson, Julia Harding and Jose Vouillamoz (HarperCollins, 2012), more an encyclopedic tome than a pocket travel guide, to be sure.

Tannat, for example, is known for its high tannin (the mouth-puckering, drying factor in red wine), though its name may refer to its dark color. Micro-oxygenation, the modern technique of bubbling small amounts of air into young wine to soften the tannins, was developed in Madiran, the appellation most known for tannat.

Fer servadou, or simply fer, derives from the Latin word for wild, and this grape is the genetic grandparent of carmenere, now popular in Chile. It shines at Domaine du Cros in Marcillac, an appellation that enjoys climatic influence of both the Mediterranean and the Atlantic. Negrette, as its name suggests, is another dark-colored grape, though more aromatic and less brooding than tannat. It is blended successfully with syrah, cabernet sauvignon and malbec at Chateau Bouissel in Fronton. While fer servadou may be native to southwestern France, negrette is thought to have been brought back from the Crusades by the Knights Templar.

If some of these grape names sound familiar, you might be hearing their Virginia accent. Tannat and fer servadou were planted in the 1990s by vintners eager to experiment with grape varieties that could ripen well in Virginia’s humid climate and contribute color and tannin to its sometimes pallid red wines. Today they show up in wines produced by Chrysalis, Hillsborough and Fabbioli Cellars in Loudoun County, as well as Delaplane Cellars in Fauquier County and Horton Vineyards in Orange County. Varietally labeled tannat can be quite good in Virginia.

Virginia is also making nice wine from petit manseng, a floral white grape that survives well against humidity and ripens with high acidity and sugar levels. In France, the grape plays a minor supporting role to gros manseng in the white wines of Jurancon. Those range from dry, fruity whites to unctuously sweet dessert wines.

With their combination of history, geography and ethnic culture in the glass, the wines of southwest France are too delicious to leave off your travel itinerary.

Joescoundrel
07-31-2013, 11:53 AM
'King of Beers,' Fizzling in U.S., Sets Goal of World Domination

By Mike Esterl |

The Wall Street Journal – 11 hours ago

ZIYANG, China—Little of the Western world has infiltrated this dusty city in China's rural hinterland, where red lanterns hang from lampposts and restaurants serve pig tail and duck neck. But Americans would recognize a beer increasingly making the rounds here: Budweiser, which flows from a state-of-the-art brewery built below a hilltop pagoda.

Advertisements for the 137-year-old brand from St. Louis, Mo., drape the windows of a banquet hall, trumpeting the year of the snake. The walls, floors and stairs of a karaoke bar are blanketed with Budweiser's red bow tie and gold crown symbols. On a narrow back street, three hot pot restaurants serve the beer. "It's brewed in Ziyang. I'm very proud of that,'' says Li Mei, manager at the "Very Hot Hot Pot.''

From soda to sneakers to cigarettes, a host of American brands have managed to become dominant across the world. But now, after watching the so-called King of Beers falter badly for years, Anheuser-Busch InBev NV is trying to go where no beer maker has even come close before—creating the world's first big global beer brand.

Already, the Belgian giant has launched the beer in Russia, Ukraine and Brazil in recent years, while deepening Bud's distribution in nearly 90 countries and doubling the number of the beer's overseas breweries. Now, the company is making a bold move into China, the largest and most elusive prize in the business, with a population that consumes a fourth of all beer and is expected to deliver more than 40% of the industry's growth this decade, according to market researcher Plato Logic.

The company, which hopes to duplicate the legendary success of Coca-Cola in China and elsewhere, has enough firepower to try. Formed from two blockbuster mergers in the previous decade, and recently swelled by a $20.1 billion takeover of Mexico's Grupo Modelo SAB, AB InBev is nearly twice the size of its nearest rival, controlling an unprecedented fifth of all global beer output. In two years, it has spent $1.4 billion refurbishing breweries and on other capital expenditures in China, with nine more breweries planned there in coming years.

But while its efforts are already making some noticeable inroads, analysts say beer is unlike almost any other consumer product and, for both historic and operational reasons, is especially difficult to turn into a global brand. Beer predates brands, having been brewed locally for thousands of years, and local consumer habits and allegiances have dug deep roots. From Brazil to Poland to Japan, it is the local beer brands that rule, and they are often a source of national pride.

The logistics of beer distribution, centered around a product typically sold in heavy glass bottles that is fairly perishable, favor the local operators as well. Long averse to any global approach, nearly every major player in the industry, including world No. 2 SABMiller PLC, continues to invest heavily in hundreds of local brands. Not surprisingly, only one beer boasts a 5% share of the world's market, and that is Snow, China's most-popular beer, sold only in China.

But none of this seems to deter AB InBev, whose massive mergers alone speak volumes about its ambitions. Carlos Brito, the company's Brazilian-born chief executive, sits in a company conference room in New York and, dressed in his typical work attire of bluejeans, describes a grand vision for a beer known more for its blue-collar roots than high-end taste. "I see a world in beer that can change fast," he says. "American culture is something that travels. Budweiser is traveling with it.''

To some degree, it needs to. Some skeptics say that the push in China is the company's best, if not most viable, hope for bolstering a brand that in its home country has been on a remarkable losing streak. Once truly the king of beers, Bud has seen consumption fall for 24 straight years in the U.S., as consumers first flocked to low-calorie beers and then to hyper-local "craft" brews, the opposite of a mass-branded Budweiser. Today, Bud is No. 3 in the U.S., relying now much more on a global business that has been growing in recent years, while Bud Light is the leader. Coors Light is No. 2.

As it deepens its commitment, AB InBev has had its share of challenges across the globe. To nudge into the Middle East, it sells an apple-flavored, alcohol-free Bud that reflects both the region's dry laws and its taste for apple drinks. (A green apple adorns the can.) In other countries with strict rules on alcohol advertising, AB InBev has had to tweak slogans (It is "Why Not Grab Some Buds" instead of "Grab Some Buds" in Canada) or, where TV commercials are banned, concoct elaborate props, like a two-story tall bottle that hung in a Moscow shopping mall, to get its message out.

The company also has more than 50 trademark disputes in more than 20 countries with Budejovicky Budvar, a much-smaller Czech brewer also laying claim to the Budweiser name. In some major markets, including France and Russia, AB InBev uses the name Bud, not Budweiser, on the beer label.

But none of that compares to the gymnastics that a full-scale rollout in China requires. With more than 3.7 million square miles to cover, just building or renovating enough breweries close enough to population centers requires years of planning. Simple beer deliveries can create their own logistical problems: Faced with bad pollution and traffic nightmares, more than 30 Chinese cities limit truck traffic during the day, forcing outfits like AB InBev to improvise, relying on motorbikes that can handle only a fifth or so of the volume a truck normally does.

Advertising restrictions are tight there, too: Only in China, which prohibits marketing claims of being the "best" or "No. 1," does the company market the "King of Beers" as the "Style of the King." And while there are no legal limits on alcoholic content, the company needed to create Bud with a lower percentage of booze; by tradition, the Chinese need that because they make many toasts.

If it does take off globally, Budweiser is an interesting choice for a world icon. The beer—which dates back to 1876, when German immigrants Eberhard Anheuser and Adolphus Busch launched a pale lager in St. Louis fashioned after beer from the Bohemian town of Budweis—has never won over most beverage connoisseurs. It scores only a 56, when any rating below 70 is "poor," on the website Beer Advocate. In Europe, where some beer brands have been popular for 500 years, Budweiser "is not seen as a real beer by beer aficionados," says Ian Shackleton, a London-based analyst with Nomura.

Joescoundrel
07-31-2013, 11:55 AM
^ (Continued)

But Bud has a powerful parent in AB InBev. The company was formed from the 2004 merger of Belgium's Interbrew and Brazil's AmBev, and in 2008, InBev acquired the St. Louis brewer in a $52 billion hostile takeover that roughly doubled the size of the company. Overnight, Anheuser-Busch became AB InBev, a cosmopolitan company based in Leuven, Belgium, but run by a mostly Brazilian group of executives in Manhattan. There, the mission has been clear: get the world to drink more American beer.

That doesn't mean the company is abandoning all its local-country beers. It says for example, it plans to keep investing in dozens of "local champions'' like Skol in Brazil and Franziskaner in Germany. Even in China, it recently rolled out a variant of Harbin, its biggest local brand, with chrysanthemum and honeysuckle, to cool spicy foods. But AB InBev, which has more than 200 brands, believes a global Budweiser would give it true economies of scale in ways the industry has never seen. Bottles, cans and packaging could be standardized, say the company's top brass, while its marketers could focus on far-reaching sponsorships like the World Cup.

Such ambitions, says its chief rival, just can't happen in the real world. "We remain convinced beer is fundamentally a local business,'' says Alan Clark, SABMiller's chief executive in an interview. Although SABMiller is expanding international distribution of brands such as Miller Genuine Draft and Italy's Peroni, it puts far greater stock in its local beers, like Snow. "There's an emotional resonance we find consumers have with beer brands which frankly is different," he says. "We just see it continuing."

Analysts are a little more divided. Sanjeet Aujla, a beverage analyst in London with Credit Suisse, believes there is room for global beer brands to grow from their small base and notes that international brands have also fetched higher prices historically. But beer is "all about local brands," he says. "Globalizing beers misses the point."

To some extent, the early returns on the global campaign, while promising to AB InBev officials, only highlight the long road ahead. In 2012, Budweiser volumes world-wide climbed 6.3%, compared with a 1.5% growth for the industry, according to Plato Logic. But the brand's global market share barely cracked 2%. In China, it is a similar story: the company says volumes of its focus brands including Budweiser jumped 22% there in the first quarter—but last year, Bud still only had a 1.7% market share. The top 10 beer brands are all local, including Harbin and Sedrin, two Chinese brands owned by AB InBev, according to Euromonitor, a market research firm.

As expected, nudging long-held consumer habits has been one of the toughest barriers. Even in Shanghai, a coastal megacity packed with prosperous and cosmopolitan shoppers, the made-in-China approach matters. At a Carrefour, Zhang Linfeng, a housewife in her 40s, grabbed Tsingtao, which has been brewed in China for more than a century and uses spring water from Laoshan Mountain, the birthplace of Taoism. "The water is good, the brand is trustworthy and the price is reasonable,'' she said, adding she also uses it to cook chicken and duck.

Competitors like Snow, a local joint venture that is 49% owned by SABMiller, play up their China roots. Snow's bottles are adorned with drawings of Chinese opera masks, Chinese chops or seals and even traditional Chinese windowpanes. One Snow variant called "Brave the World'' celebrates China's outdoors in its marketing. Snow also has sponsored articles and books about centuries-old Chinese architecture.

Logistically, the local brands have a big edge, too. Snow can get its beer to consumers cheaply because it has more than 80 breweries across China, roughly twice as many as AB InBev. At a Tesco supermarket in Shanghai, a 620-milliliter bottle of Snow's "Opera" beer was recently selling for 2.50 yuan, or about 40 cents, in contrast to 6.60 yuan for a similarly sized Budweiser. Mr. Yang, a 54-year-old shopper, grabbed two bottles of Snow. "They taste the same, so I don't care,'' said Mr. Yang, who didn't want to give his full name.

Budweiser does have some natural advantages in the country, where Anheuser-Busch began brewing the beer locally at a facility in 1995. Like many Chinese beers, Budweiser is made with rice, not just barley, giving it a mild taste that, while a turnoff to many beer snobs, is widely favored by Chinese consumers. What is more, the brand's chief color is red—same as the Chinese flag and a color that represents good fortune and happiness to the Chinese.

The brewer has also only begun the long journey of reaching drinkers outside big cities. It now makes Budweiser in eight breweries in China, up from two in 2008. Its new brewery in Ziyang in Sichuan province is more than 1,000 miles from China's coast, the company's farthest inland plant. "The West is a new country for AB InBev,'' says Jeff Liu, a former Coke executive, who heads AB InBev's Western China business.

On a recent night, Cherry Deng drank $5 Budweisers and ate strawberries at Lotus Palace, an upscale Chengdu bar. "For a girl, the beer is light, and it tastes good,'' said the 25-year-old stewardess as a Madonna video played on a screen. Budweiser was also a big seller at Moon Village KTV, a large karaoke bar with Moët & Chandon Champagne and Haagen-Dazs ice cream. At a Carrefour supermarket, 23-year-old Chen Zhijin put a six-pack of Budweiser in his cart. "International beer is better,'' he said.

That kind of sentiment has company officials back in New York, and some analysts, excited about the long term prospect of creating the Coke of beers. Dirk Van Vlaanderen, a beer analyst at Jefferies International, estimates global brands, led by Budweiser, will contribute 60% of the company's volume growth over the next three years.

"The potential is so huge, I don't see us [exhausting it] anytime soon,'' says Mr. Brito, the company's CEO, sitting in the conference room on Park Ave. Behind him is a display with several AB InBev bottles and cans. Budweiser occupies the top shelf.

—Yang Jie in Shanghai contributed to this article.

Sam Miguel
11-14-2013, 08:25 AM
Cool for red wine, cold for white

Lapostolle describes itself as Chilean by birth, but French by style

By Alex Y. Vergara

Philippine Daily Inquirer

3:17 am | Thursday, November 14th, 2013

It pays to drink a cool bottle of red wine and a cold bottle of white wine. Otherwise, even the best reds would taste acrid (the Filipino word “mapakla” says it best), while the best whites would taste sour or acidic if not chilled properly.

Instead of leaving them at room temperature, red wines are best chilled at 18 degrees centigrade. White wines could be chilled up to six degrees centigrade.

“The simplest way of checking the wine is by holding the bottle,” said Randy Uson, brand development manager of Moët Hennessy Asia Pacific. “If the bottle of red wine is cool, then that’s okay. If the bottle of white wine is cold, then it’s good.”

People in temperate countries could drink red wine straight out of the wine cellar because room temperatures there could easily dip to 18 degrees centigrade. Even an air-conditioned room in Manila is still warm by comparison.

Interesting facts

“If the bottle of red is warm, don’t drink it because the taste of alcohol would be too strong or mapakla,” he said. “If that same bottle is too cold, you also won’t be able to appreciate it, as red wine’s flavors tend to close when too cold.”

Constant cool temperatures should be maintained even during the wines’ shipment and storage. That’s why the biggest wine companies ship their products in temperature-controlled containers. They also expect their distributors to keep the wines cool.

“Constant exposure to warm temperature could permanently damage the taste and quality of most wines,” said Uson. “And that could also ruin a wine company’s reputation.”

As a growing number of Filipinos become regular wine drinkers, Uson shared a number of interesting and useful facts on how to best enjoy wine during a recent dinner hosted by restaurateur Elbert Cuenca at the Riedel Room, the new private venue of Elbert’s Steak Room in Makati City.

“We are still a work in progress, but this place is now open for private parties consisting of groups of up to 16,” said Cuenca. “Bacchus, which supplies most of our wines, also distributes Riedel wine glasses locally. They came here and said they wanted to make it into a Riedel room. So far, there are only three Riedel rooms in the world, and ours happens to be the third.”

In honor of special guest Diego Urra, brand ambassador and assistant winemaker of Chile-based Lapostolle wines, Cuenca and younger brother Adrian Cuenca, the restaurant’s chef, paired items on the special dinner menu with four of the winery’s leading wines: Casa sauvignon blanc, Cuvee Alexandre chardonnay, Casa merlot and Clos Apalta, Lapostolle’s prized and multi-awarded red wine based on carmenere.

Award-winning vintage

People are willing to pay as much as $3,000 for a bottle of Clos Apalta’s vintage ’05, said Urra. The same multi-awarded vintage was responsible for putting not only Lapostolle, but also the whole of South America, on the wine map.

“Chile first became known for producing good value wines some 15 to 20 years ago,” said Urra. “Over the years, we grew in that category in terms of volume and quality. All those years, Chilean winemakers were also actively promoting abroad.”

Now that everybody knows where Chile is and its reputation for producing some of the world’s best wines, the challenge for new world winemakers like Urra is to convince people that Chileans can produce fine wines that are “10 times cheaper” than those produced in Bordeaux.

Moët Hennessy has been marketing Lapostolle’s wines globally for close to six years now. The family-owned company, which prides itself of its French heritage, operates several vineyards and wineries in a number of valleys in the Chilean wine region, a fairly narrow strip of land that spans the coast up to the foot of the Andes mountains.

Diverse conditions and topography—cold near the coastal plain and warmer by the Andes—allow Lapostolle to produce a variety of grapes that are suitable ingredients for its various wine offerings. Lapostolle is also one of the few wine companies in Chile that practice organic and biodynamic farming.

More aromatic

Apart from avoiding the use of chemicals, Lapostolle doesn’t use genetically modified organisms. Instead of machines, it relies on manual labor to pick grapes mostly at night when temperatures are cooler and fruits are more “relaxed.”

“Grapes are fresher and more aromatic when harvested at night, and those qualities have an effect on taste,” said Uson. “And since people and not machines pick the grapes, they can discard rejects immediately. It costs more money to hire people, but it ultimately helps ensure quality.”

In Urra’s book, the old rule of drinking whites with fish and reds with meat continues to evolve. It’s okay, for instance, to drink white wine with beef carpaccio as long as the wine is on the “oaky” side.

“There are still useful rules out there, which you could find in books and on the Internet,” he said. “But consumers have had to deal with so many conflicting rules in the past that they ended up more confused. Worse, some ended up not knowing anything. We have to keep things simple by allowing people to discover certain things for themselves.”

Chardonnay, for instance, could pair well with a range of dishes other than fish and appetizers. It would all depend not only on the place where the chardonnay is produced, but also on the type of chardonnay, which ranges from oaky to creamy, light and fresh.

“Even if all of us make wines within a certain region, the results would still be different,” he said. “The final product would depend on our respective ideas and tastes.”

French roots

Urra’s efforts to educate people aren’t limited to consumers. He also regularly meets with chefs to discuss the best Lapostolle wines to pair with their dishes.

“If the main dish, for example, is pepper-crusted beef, I would advise them not to make the dish too peppery if they’re going to pair it with, say, cabernet sauvignon and Clos Apalta,” he said. “I certainly won’t pair it with a sauvignon blanc since the dish’s spicy flavor would completely overpower the wine.”

The family behind Lapostolle wineries began producing wines in Chile in 1994, but it traces its roots much earlier in France. In fact, it still owns several vineyards in the French Cognac region where Gran Marnier cognac is produced.

Alexandra Marnier Lapostolle, the woman behind Lapostolle, named one of the house’s wines Cuvee Alexandre in honor of her great grandfather Alexandre Marnier, creator of Gran Marnier.

“To sum up our unique position in the industry, Lapostolle describes itself as Chilean by birth, but French by style,” said Urra.

Sam Miguel
11-07-2014, 09:24 AM
YOUR DAD LOVED BAD BEER AND SO DO YOU

Why we still drink—and enjoy—industrial brews.

By Aaron Goldfarb on October 30, 2014

My father doesn’t drink. He isn't an alcoholic or anything, he just doesn’t really care to drink. Which didn't seem so cool when I was a kid but is actually quite liberating now. Because, as an adult, I’m not forced to drink a shitty beer or two just to honor him.

For others, though, “dad beer” is big business at the moment. The hottest new spot in Manhattan is Boilermaker, a just-opened East Village joint trying to revive the lost art of a (dad) beer and a shot. I've likewise been noticing of late a lot of quality establishments—craft beer havens even—devoting a small portion of their well-curated beverage programs to dad beer with no shame whatsoever. The acclaimed Dinosaur BBQ even has a menu section titled "My Father's Fridge," which features those usual dad beer suspects (Genesee Cream Ale, Schafer, Yuengling, etc.) as a cheaper antidote to the pricy pints of local IPAs they also offer. And, dad beer made major headlines last week when Michelin-starred chef David Chang, had the gall to admit his favorite beer is...Bud Light.

The easily offended members of the beer cognoscenti (that's most of us) fell into an uproar, outraged that the Momofuku impresario would dare like a different beer than them. They thought it absurd that a man whose life is so devoted to flavor could utterly neglect it when it comes to what he uses to get himself drunk. They called him an “asshat,” a “pretentious douchebag,” and many folks cynically even saw Chang's contrarian piece as shameless clickbait (though no one has explained to me why an international restaurateur worth a reported $5 million needs a few extra pageviews in his portfolio). I read it as something quite simpler though. Whether he realizes it or not, Chang drinks Bud Light because it allows him to connect with his family's past.

Aside from anything else besides maybe major league sports, mass-market beers are the one prevalent American product that easily lets us connect with our ancestors. Even in his piece, Chang notes that he started drinking Bud Light because his grandfather drank Bud Light. His grandfather probably did a lot of other things too, but I doubt Chang also proudly watches reruns of “Playhouse 90,” listens to Glenn Miller records, and/or wears pleated trousers to honor that same beloved grandfather.

Because, that’s the thing, unlike TV or music or certainly fashion, dad beer is always exactly as good—or as bad—as it was when dad drank it, because dad beers are beers that have been around for decades if not centuries and often had the exact same recipe that entire time. Thus, whether you’re sitting in front of a state-of-the-art, 60-inch OLED television polishing off some dad beer or enjoying a bucket of dad beer at a hip Bowery gastropub, a part of you can feel transported back to dad’s time. To when he would have drank the very same beer in front of his wooden-cabinet tube TV or while bellied-up at a crummy corner pub in his hometown.

Yuengling (1829), Schaefer (1842), Genesee (1878), Genny Cream (1960), and Bud Light (1982) taste just like they used to taste when dad used to drink them. Heck, many of them still even look the same. It’s almost no wonder Miller Lite went so far as to put their dad beer back in an iconic circa 1975 dad can last year. They clearly know why people buy and enjoy their beer nowadays (now if only they could add a dad-approved pull tab for even more authenticity). Likewise, Narragansett, a dad brand also popular in the 1970s, was revived in 2005 after twenty-four years of dormancy and, with intentionally retro cans, now sits proudly on many of those notable dad beer menus.

Pabst Blue Ribbon is technically dad beer, but it has, of course, long been drank purely ironically. Damn hipsters. Which brings up another point worth mentioning: dad beer is only drank semi-ironically. You see, most modern consumers know dad beer is not "good" per se and the fact that it's often canned, served in bulk, cheap, and old-timey allows a certain kind of person to use these facts as an amused shell for their most earnest feelings. Semi-ironic dad beer drinking masks the real, sentimental reason people are actually drinking dad beer: because your dad used to (or still does) drink it. It may be a tautology, but it’s as simple as that.

We may be bad sons and daughters who live halfway across the country and never actually get to drink with dad or grandpa much any more, but by having a boilermaker we're spiritually drinking with them. By polishing off a sixer of Bud Light or Miller High Life, we’re tacitly admitting we’re more like our dad than we ever thought we’d be. Perhaps by having a few Genny Creams we’re actually admitting that we’re finally adults because, to us, dad was always an adult.

As I said, my dad didn’t drink and thus he didn’t have “a beer” that was his. And, perhaps with such freedom that’s why I became a pretentious beer geek and get no joy out of drinking many of those aforementioned cans of industrial swill. Luckily, for people like me, though, we can still drink to dear old dad the way one acclaimed brewer honors his dad (and granddads and great-granddads and so on) with just about every new offering that he brews.

Shaun Hill has been making world-class beers at his Hill Farmstead Brewery since 2010. This Greensboro Bend, Vermont brewer isn't simply devoted to rustic styles like saison and biere de garde, but is also devoted to honoring his family's rustic past with each new brew. In fact, the majority of his beers are actually named after his relatives. There's Arthur and Dorothy, Edward and George, Ephraim and Harlan, and earlier this year we even saw the release of a bourbon barrel-aged barleywine named Aaron. I wish I could say Hill was honoring me because we are distant cousins or something, but Aaron was actually his great-great-great-grandfather. Though he never met the man who was born in 1786, Hill surely gets to feel a unique kinship every time he quaffs a glass bearing Aaron’s name.

And that’s truly the point of dad beer. We all know that particular adjunct lager is not “better” than a craft pilsner and David Chang even admits that Bud Light is probably not better than the exotic stouts and whatnot created by his friends at Mikkeller. But unlike those modern craft beers, dad beer can actually put you in touch with your history. It allows you to relax like people did back when the world was simpler. When dad first started drinking that very beer.

As for me, I’m curious what will happen when I have a son. Will he drink bombers of Firestone Walker Parabola semi-ironically? Damn hipster.

Sam Miguel
11-07-2014, 09:51 AM
THE WORLD'S BEST SOMMELIER HAS 8 TIPS FOR DRINKING FANTASTIC WINE

A guide for the everyman.

By Josh Ozersky on November 6, 2014

Aldo Sohm, the aptly named wine director of Le Bernardin, was the 2008 winner of the “Best Sommelier in the World” award given by the World Sommelier Association. He is the man. We talked to Aldo to ask for some basic tips for a guy that wants to buy a bottle of wine at the store and doesn't know anything beyond “it should cost more than $15.” (Which, by the way, is not bad advice as far as it goes.)

If you want to meet Aldo yourself, it's not hard—he just opened up Aldo Sohm Wine Bar in midtown Manhattan, and he bops between there and Le Bernardin all night long. (“I don't need a gym membership, I can tell you that,” he says.)

Don't get carried away with prices. A wine can be perfectly marketed and have a horrific price but is worth only a third of the value. Don't worry about big wines—though, you can actually get a good buy sometimes by starting with the entry-level wine of a top producer.

Look for wines that are out of fashion now, but will come back around because they're good. Loire wines are out of fashion, but so what? Chenin blancs are undervalued—and muscadet is wildly undervalued. For French people, you say “muscadet” and they make a funny face because to them it's no good. But if you like Chablis, you can like muscadet as well. You just have to find the right one. There are some awesome Beaujolais out there. You know what's a great pick? Vietti Nebbiolo Perbacco. A great producer, a really good wine, and it's around $25.

It's the wine, not the price. I wish everyone could do blind tastings the way we do. It would make such a difference in the way people buy wine.

As a sommelier, you have a ten second window to figure out what someone's looking for. And they'll tell you something that's different from what they're looking for. They say they want a fruitier style of wine, but really they just want something aromatic. It's hard for a lot of people to order wine; you have to help them get what they want. The guest and the sommelier both feel like they're put on the spot.

People talk about wine values, but is a French strawberry better than a Chilean strawberry? It depends. Chilean wine is often a great value, but does it fit the profile of what you're after? They can be really powerful and overripe. If you want something bolder, stay in Chile. If you want something fresher, more elegant, stay with France.

So much is happening in regions people don't know a lot about—and vintages in those regions. The 2013 Austrian whites are stunning. Just off the charts. I'm so psyched about them. I had a $12 glass of one in Brooklyn, and I was super excited. It's not just because I'm Austrian, either.

You know where some great wines are coming from right now? Santa Barbara. They're getting better and better—probably the most development I've seen lately. Santa Maria, too. The Finger Lakes. Wines from the Douro region of Portugal are really delivering after years of waiting. Those are great values.

Sometimes you can get a great value for a wine that isn't exactly cheap. Jean-Louis Chave Hermitage... I mean that guy is one of the absolute superstars in Hermitage. He's making really interesting wines, and they're really hardy and delicious. Even his Selection Hermitage, which is the cheaper of his two lines, has a concentration and a richness that’s really something, but it also has all this freshness, and these supple tannins, and it opens up really well. I like it with peasant food, like a roasted pork shoulder and beans. That's what seems right with it to me. I'm just digging that wine right now.

Sam Miguel
11-07-2014, 09:57 AM
UNEXPECTED PRAISE FOR THE FROZEN DRINK

So bad, it's good.

By Aaron Goldfarb on October 22, 2014

When you write about alcohol for a living, you’re presumed to exclusively drink the good stuff. True, I’ve traveled the world to try its greatest beers, I’ve had all those noted bourbons and scotches that gets fetishized by people in the know, and I’m constantly thinking about where I’m going to find my next great cocktail. But I also have a great shame to share: I love frozen drinks.

Amazingly, they’re kind of a “thing” right now. In fact, there are hip cocktail bars across America—notably Snow & Co. (Kansas City), Drumbar (Chicago), Battery Harris (Brooklyn), and Mother’s Ruin (Manhattan)—offering high-end, hand-crafted frozen drinks.

But, though those are all surely great, I’m not talking about them.

What I secretly love are those alcoholic slushies, ostensibly “margaritas” and “daiquiris,” packed with sugar and artificial flavors, neon in color, always dispensed from a rotating Slurpee-like contraption, usually at faux-Mexican restaurants and your suburban hometown's cheesiest bars. The kind of alcoholic beverages most favored by newbie drinkers and burned-out teachers hitting up happy hour. Not snobby, 35-year-old drinks writers.

I don’t remember my first frozen drink, but it was probably on some college spring break trip, and it was almost certainly served in a “yard” glass (and then eventually refunded to a motel toilet later that night). Back when I was a young idiot just out of college, living in a cramped apartment with a few other dudes, the second day of the weekend somehow became something we dubbed “Daiquiri Sundays.” We were all single, mostly broke, and always bored. We’d wake up late, purchase a few handles of rum, several bags of ice from a bodega, a sack of fruit from a street stand, and then starting blending. We’d watch football and drink shaker pint after shaker pint of our frozen concoctions, and eventually we’d all get sloshed enough to come up with a “good idea” for how to spend those final few hours of our weekend. It never went well. And, though I often woke up groggy on Monday mornings, my shirt covered in bright red, sticky stains, I loved Daiquiri Sunday more than any other day of the week back then.

That was a decade ago and now my Sundays are much milder, spent hitting up Crate & Barrel and enjoying nice meals with my wife. I’m not sure if I now even own a blender, and I’d have no clue where to find a frozen drink in New York—though I’m betting Guy Fieri’s Times Square joint has some “bangin’” ones.

Still, any time I’m stuck at a faraway airport on an extended layover it inevitably occurs. It’s late and maybe a Chili's is the only place you can find a drink. I’ll study the laminated menu with photos of all the chain restaurant’s “signature” libations, but I already know what I want: a few jumbo margaritas. Salt on that rim please, bartender.

Joescoundrel
11-27-2014, 01:58 PM
5 Ways the Alcohol Industry Tricks You Into Drinking Garbage

By Pauli Poisuo November 26, 2014

290,187 views

As a dedicated lady and/or gentleman of leisure, you are no doubt well acquainted with the court of King Alcohol, and perhaps have even experienced the many good and ill fortunes his company tends to bring.

Alcohol can be pure happiness in potable form or its very own circle of hell, depending on your relationship with it. However, human issues notwithstanding, the actual substance is generally pretty straightforward and honest stuff: you take simple ingredients and let chemistry run its horrible course until said ingredients get you shitfaced. It depends on your expertise and available equipment whether this process results in fine wine or prison pruno. My point being, you can't really cheat at alcohol.

Ha, got you for a minute there! You totally can. Here's how:

#5. The Giant Counterfeit Booze Conspiracy

When writing a list-format article, it's usually customary to save the best/worst entry for last, because that's how these things work. However, I'm going to break the format a bit here, because I feel this particular entry is way the hell too depressing to end a column with. You can call this novel approach a test listicle, if you will. Someone should come up with a catchy nickname for that.

Russia easily and Internet-famously takes the cake when it comes to alcohol-fueled not-giving-a-shittery. And when it comes to booze, the country is most intimately associated with vodka -- go ahead, try to picture an inebriated man from Vladivostok attacking a dash-cam-equipped car while waving a whiskey bottle. Can't be done.

It's quite absurd, really. But, of course, a country that fascinated with alcohol has tons of types available. Take cognac, for instance. You can absolutely get tons of this particularly refined brandy in Russia. Except, don't literally take cognac from there, because according to some reports, up to 70 percent of that shit is completely counterfeit. Yes, counterfeit, as in "they cook up cheap-ass imitations of this highly prestigious drink from aromatizers, chemicals, and whatever alcohol they happen to have lying around."

Personally, I dislike cognac, so if it wasn't for the fact that people die from drinking it, I wouldn't give a good goddamn whether it was made by mixing ground warthog anus with once-used barley wine. However, fake booze can be extremely hazardous to your health -- and it's not just cognac: wine and, of course, vodka are also highly susceptible to similar counterfeiting, making every time you grab an alcoholic beverage in Russia even more of a gamble than getting drunk in Russia is generally. It seems kind of unfair that a nation already plagued with alcohol-related deaths has its troubles worsened by fake, potentially poisonous booze, but that's how things apparently are.

As anyone who has seen a Russian dash-cam video on YouTube can probably guess, getting proper statistics on deaths caused solely by these fake spirits is hard as fuck, though in 2006 the then-interior minister was able to approximate the figure to roughly 42,000 annual deaths.

It's not just a Russian issue, either. Alcohol counterfeiting -- usually in the form of distilling cheap products and packaging them in bootleg versions of expensive brands -- has been touring the world for a while now. In 2012, 26 people died in the Czech Republic because they drank fake vodka and rum. That same year, a single county in the U.K. prosecuted 21 traders and seized about 1,800 bottles of fake alcohol, a figure likely to be just the tip of the iceberg. In an effort to keep this column even a little on the comedic side of things, I'm not even going to discuss the situation in China.

Curiously, and assuming Google isn't hiding some giant American booze conspiracy from me, lethal fake alcohol doesn't seem to be much of a problem in the U.S. That doesn't mean America doesn't have interesting booze problems of its own, though ...

#4. The Craft Whiskey Factory Cheat

In October, fellow columnist and whiskey enthusiast Brendan McGinley saw fit to accidentally grace my birthday with a nuanced ode to my favorite drink, which I proceeded to read with a glass (technically, bottles are made of glass, right?) of delicious, delicious Scotch slowly setting my heart and stomach ablaze. The next morning, once I'd returned the truck and the orangutan and promised the police officers that this was my last Every Which Way but Loose bender this month, I found myself intrigued by a throwaway line in Brendan's column about how a great many whiskeys come from a single distillery in Indiana.

So I started digging around, stumbled onto Eric Felten's Daily Beast article on the subject, and, to put it bluntly, motherfucker.

Turns out, said distillery is MGP Ingredients in Lawrenceburg, and it makes a good number of those small-batch craft whiskeys people have been ranting about in recent years. I'm pretty exclusively a Scotch man, which is probably why I wasn't aware of this earlier (whiskey folk are a tight-knit lot, so I assume the info has been circulating for quite some time among aficionados). In fact, the whole "we make tons of different drinks in this giant factory" thing isn't too shocking. What else do you do if you have a giant factory distillery?

My issue -- as well as Felten's -- is with the many, many "artisanal" distilleries who buy and bottle bulk stuff, yet own shiny copper kettles and boast that they make their own. Take Templeton Rye, an Iowa-based company that blatantly claimed to found their distilling traditions on a prohibition-era recipe handed down through the family on a scrap of paper. When it was found they were buying their fare from MGP, their chairman quickly backtracked and said that, actually, federal regulations prevent the company from making their whiskey using that recipe, and they were totally planning to start putting "Distilled in Indiana" stickers on the bottles. As you can probably guess, the lawsuit-punch they received broke the sound barrier, and many similar companies are under investigation.

That's not to say the hooch they sell is bad, of course. MGP knows its shit. For the most part, the whiskeys leaving the distillery appear to be perfectly decent, even delicious. However, as much as I like, say, Samuel Adams lager, if someone put it in another bottle and sold it to me as a pricey craft beer, so help me I would cut a bitch. And beer-lover Pauli is a lot more reasonable than whiskey-lover Pauli.

Which, incidentally, doesn't bode well for the next entry ...

#3. Artificial Aging

As any drinker of wine or whiskey can attest, age is an important component to the taste. Both drinks are also handy for forgetting what a horrible person you are for coming up with all those awful jokes about the latter part of the previous sentence.

Friends of traditionally aged alcohol across the world, I stand before you today with a shitload of bad news. To stop myself from ranting, I'm just going to rattle it off:

A retired South Carolina chemist has devised a way to age dark liquors in 12 hours and vodka in just six by pumping them through an oxygenated chamber.

Tom Lix of Cleveland Whiskey has a machine that can age bourbon in mere days by basically tumble-drying the distillate with bits of barrel.

A British inventor is working on an ultrasonic aging device that could be able to age wine in just 30 minutes.

A gadget called Clef du Vin is purportedly also capable of aging wine, this time via dunking its copper alloy head into the liquid for a period of time.

Of course, all of these things are largely faulty techniques. The chemist guy's process does little to mellow the harshness of young alcohol. Lix's concoction apparently sells fairly well, but its taste is compared to paint thinner by an enthusiast. The ultrasonic thing is suspect considering the main media picking the story up is a tabloid. As for Clef du Vin, it seems to be able to mellow a wine's taste but not really improve it, which could makes it handy for making cheap wines more potable, but little else.

Personally, I'm happy that they all seem to be duds but worried that there is a trend to develop these methods of rapid preparation. Don't get me wrong: generally, I'm all for cheat codes. I'm a lazy fucker, and the second someone comes up with a machine that can create a passable glass of Talisker, I'm damn well buying three of those. Even so, the traditionalist in me keeps asking: if anyone could make any fine drink just by pressing a button, would we enjoy them anymore? Would they be fine drinks anymore?

I guess my answer for that question is no. There's a place and time for painstaking, intricate alcohol craftsmanship (in my glass and right now), and I'd argue that something precious will be lost the day technology progresses to the point where "make award-winning Scotch" is a trick your cousin can teach to his dog.

Joescoundrel
11-27-2014, 02:00 PM
^ Continued

#2. Bottle-Switching

Ever been in a bar and thought your drink was a little ... off? Not necessarily watered-down or spiked with something nefarious, just strange in a way you can't quite put your finger on? Don't worry, you haven't been poisoned (that is, unless the cheap muck your bartender poured in your cocktail instead of your usual brand of vodka was one of those counterfeit bottles we discussed earlier). But you may not be drinking what you ordered, either.

Bottle-switching is a trick where the contents of a brand-name bottle of alcohol are replaced with a cheaper, lower-quality hooch. The same applies for beer taps -- it's ridiculously easy to mislabel a tap and sell you some cheap IPA swill instead of the $16 pint of Elmer's Taint Sweat or whatever shit micro-brew you're into this week. It's not as if you're going to tell the difference after a few drinks.

It's difficult to gauge just how commonplace bottle-switching is, because according to the guys who get captured, everyone else is doing it too. However, a 2013 sting in the bars of New Jersey -- dubbed Operation Swill, because humor -- showed a fraud rate of about 20 percent, which is a figure that the limited math functions of my brain are prepared to accept as accurate and apply it to the entire world.

Vodka is obviously a prime candidate for aspiring bottle-switchers, seeing as the taste differences between semi-OK vodkas and the prestigious Snoop Dogg-approved brands are virtually nonexistent. However, every once in a while, particularly unscrupulous bartenders/managers touch the drinks that can be easily told apart by experienced drinkers, like this guy, who ordered Macallan Scotch knowing full well what it tastes like, only to receive a glass filled with something completely different and, upon insisting that the drink was not what he ordered, a poker-faced denial.

#1. Yeah, Even That Antifreeze Wine Trick From The Simpsons

Hey, look! There's one more poison booze entry after all. Well, shit, this column is turning into a right misery sandwich, isn't it?

Remember that one Simpsons episode where Bart is sent to France and accidentally uncovers the scheme of two villainous winemakers who mix their fare with antifreeze? That shit totally happened, only in a different country. In 1985, an Austrian wine-growing town renowned for the purity of its product got busted for lacing what could be millions of gallons of wine with diethylene glycol, a sweet-tasting chemical used in, yes, antifreeze (among a million other, equally indigestible things). The substance was supposed to hitch up the wine's price by giving it an extra sugary tang (wines are often rated by their sweetness in the German-speaking world). I can't really say what logic drove the manufacturers to choose a substance specifically known to be poisonous, ship it all over Austria and Germany -- a country known for meticulousness -- and expect no one to test the stuff, but hey, I'm not a professional wine counterfeiter.

At this point, and especially with that Simpsons reference, it's easy to think that this was just the work of some random, beret-wearing, bewhiskered fucker and his accomplice, their scheme just waiting to be thwarted by a jaundiced kid with a sawblade haircut.

So, let's discuss numbers. The initial poison-wine blacklist by West Germany alone included a whopping 350 wines and saw additions as the case grew. The amounts of diethylene glycol the tainted bottles contained weren't kiddie numbers, either. One famously refined and sweet wine was found to contain no less than 16 grams of diethylene glycol per liter. Another, slightly less-revered but nevertheless equipped with a "special quality" seal, contained as much as 48 goddamned grams per liter. The potentially lethal amount, it should be mentioned, is estimated around 14 grams per liter.

According to officials, no one really knows when the tampering started, although seeing as no deaths were reported, they probably caught the practice -- along with the four main culprits -- pretty early on. Their best guess is that the winemakers of the area had made a profitable deal with several supermarket chains 10 years ago, but eventually panicked when grape crop after crop came out too sour to make their wines sufficiently sweet.

As the old saying in the business world goes: when in doubt, fucking attempt to poison millions of people for profit.

Joescoundrel
12-23-2014, 09:55 AM
Why Whisky Is a Manly Drink (But Not How You Think)

By Brendan McGinley

October 27, 2014

242,170 views

Some say the world will end in fire; some say ice. But with whisky you don't have to choose! It's the drink born of fire that goes great on the rocks. And it will end your world by bringing about a new one. So put on your big boy pants; it's whiskin' time!

Where there's smoke, there's firewater

Whisky is that drink that lets you walk up to strangers who have more money than you do. "Hello, soon-to-be friends," you say, completely sober. "I am holding a whisky."

"You must be interesting!" they greet you in reply. "Tell us about your travels in Java!"

And then you lie to them, because you've never been to Indonesia, but it's poor form to disappoint new friends. As you spin your web of deceit, you swirl the whisky in your glass like it was brandy. Holy cow! You are breaking all the rules tonight! Look what whisky has led you to do!

Types of Whisky

The distillation process would take longer to discuss than the average batch of whisky takes to come to fruition. Just know that it's an arduous journey in which grains cease to be burdensome nutrition and finally become useful as sour mash. That mash will ferment, somehow yeast will be involved, God smiles, and now you've got whisky. It's just that simple.

Very often the grains are malted before fermentation, just to mess with their heads. When they think they're going to promulgate, they get roasted along with their hopes and dreams.

A great many whiskys come from a single plant in Indiana. This may be disheartening to craft whisky fans, but it's very heartening to those of us looking to buy whisky by the barrel.

Whisky in general

Whiskey -- or whisky if you're nasty -- means "water of life" in Irish ("uisce beatha"), which says a whole lot about the micks and even more about the quality of their well water. Corrupted through years of Anglican misuse (much like the Irish themselves), the phrase came to be known as simply whiskey, which you're clever enough to recognize as "Water." How are you going to mature and flourish without water? You'd be dead in a week. Therefore whiskey is life.

In America and Ireland the e spelling is used. Everywhere else is wrong. Interestingly, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms disagrees. But what do they know? They can't even break up a hippie commune correctly.

Scotch

Scotch refers specifically to whisky from Scotland made under these conditions. Scotch is a word so old it doesn't even describe Scottish things anymore, because whisky is so great it displaced an entire country from its own descriptor. This language isn't big enough for both the Scottish people and all the drinking they intend to do.

Scotch is usually a smooth drink and one that has fond associations for me of when the English sent my Scottish ancestors to Ireland to breed out the Irish.

Rye

Hoo boy, this is one of the ongoing tragedies of Prohibition. Rye used to be the predominant American whisky until a bunch of do-gooders decided to ruin everything everywhere for everyone forever.

In the 1920s, rye production shifted to Canada, where men were Mounties and women were in love with those men's horses. The only problem is Canada is a lawless place that doesn't even require its rye to be made with 51% rye like we do.

Canada, there's a lot great about you but calling a drink "rye" when it lacks any rye ingredient is as messed up as Southerners who call all soft drinks Coke. You don't want to be the South of the north, do you? That is a game with no winner.

Bourbon

Whereas rye must be distilled using 51% or more of its grains from rye in these sane United States, bourbon must be 51% corn, "aged in new, charred oak barrels," and sipped while fondly recollecting last summer. It's a strange requirement, I agree, but a fitting one.

Many brands of bourbon are distilled in Kentucky, but none in Bourbon County. Happy hour special: free irony with your drink!

Tennessee whisky

I went to a wedding this summer where the bride's family was from Tennessee. They were lovely people, and not one of them called a ginger ale "Coke." That's salt of the earth. The only thing strange about them was they filtered all their whisky through charcoal because their government commanded it be so.

Moonshine

Quite popular among people who intend to go blind in the next few years.

Maturity

Maturity! I've heard great things about it. It was never my bag. But as I now enter my 30s four years ago, I see the virtues of adult behavior, like saving for retirement, using a tablesaw, and not passing out on the 7 train to work after chasing it a half-mile in the freezing dawn with last night's booze still sloshing through my veins.

When I was a college graduate working on ferryboats to develop those rope-and-knot skills so crucial in the digital communications job market, I worked with a guy named John. On John's last day, at the end of the summer season, we were the last deckhands standing, so I took him out for a fare-thee-well drink. And being a latecomer to the demon drink, I was still indulging my sweet tooth. I ordered a Midori sour (go ahead and judge), then went to the bathroom.

When I came back, no neon green cocktail awaited me. There sat a bronze beauty in her place, beaming.

"This is called whisky," said John. "It's what a man drinks and it's what I drink and it's what you're going to drink because I can't watch you sip any more candy."

From then on, I was a whisky man, whereas before I'd been a glucose gal. And don't think you won't experience your own version of that moment just because your coworkers aren't sailors. Anyone can enjoy the dulcet kiss of the highland drink. In fact becoming a whisky man is as inevitable as puberty.

Uses

Dear other people: why can't you be whisky? Unlike most of humanity, whisky never trolls YouTube and instead chooses to be valuable to society in these ways:

Refining its users' tastes

Whisky gusses up your palate overall. No longer will you sip the pisswater beers of your college parties because they're all you can stomach. A roasted stout might taste like burnt popcorn to you now, but after a toot of whisky, they're as smooth as water. And in an era when IPAs run rampant and roughshod over the beer scene, you need that whisky.

Joescoundrel
12-23-2014, 09:56 AM
^ Continued

Sign of goodwill

Whisky is a currency of respect among men. A bottle of it presented to a fellow says "I acknowledge you as a man and have no plans to stab you."

When Cracked heartthrob Gladstone published his first book, it was a diary of drinking whisky and secondarily investigating the internet apocalypse. To celebrate, we, his friends, got him whisky stones emblazoned with his name. That way he could mark all the whisky in the world as his own, and with all that drink in him, pee on everything. That, of course, would give him ownership of all that his mighty flow touched. So basically that gift acknowledged him as our rightful lord.

Gladstone and I have a friend--let's call him Nigel since he's so English you'd never believe his real name is Nick--who threw me a lot of work when I was freelancing, desperate to pay my rent and if there was any money left over that month, perhaps eat. Time and again, I'd be scraping bottom on my finances, and in came a plum assignment from Nick. When I reached the relative security of a day job, my only mission was to find out what Nick's favorite whisky was and present him with a bottle and a "Thanks for keeping me alive."

When giving thanks to your savior, only a bottle of whisky will do.

Mark of taste

Whisky also makes an excellent housewarming gift when meeting your girlfriend's parents for the first time. A mellow, smoky whisky says to these people, "You may relax in the knowledge that someone thoughtful and competent is fucking your daughter."

Eliciting poetry from the elderly

I asked my old man why he drinks whisky. He said, "When you've been out walking all day it feels good in your joints and bones. It's better on the rocks. Always better in front of a fire." That's about as concise a thesis for this article as I can find.

The Ratio of Whisky to Manly Virtues

What is a man? Is it testes? No, Fight Club proved otherwise. A Y chromosome? Pfffft. There's tons of dames with a Y chromosome and some guys without one.* Upholding socialized gender roles? I would remind you we're praising a drink from a country that gave us both Groundskeeper Willie and man-skirts.

*If you are one of the latter, I recommend attending one of Robert Brockway's book readings. Robert possesses the rare YYY configuration where even his cells' nuclei have little tiny beards. You may get to see him turn water into whisky, and if you touch the hem of his cloak, you instantly gain the ability to fix a car.

No, the definition of masculinity is more elusive. Imagine if centaurs were real, but some were more horse than man and vice versa. You might even come across a regular-looking horse who, nevertheless, spoke fluent centaur and had a good smithy business going. You wouldn't tell him he "wasn't centaur enough." That'd be a dick move. If you bought him a whisky instead you'd end up focusing on what you have in common instead. Perhaps you both shoot arrows at things or abduct naiads? If the latter, turn yourself into the ancient Greek police immediately.

My advice to you is to worry about yourself and not the other centaurs. Gender taxonomy is too broad to define in a single article. You'd have to ponder it over whisky for, like...at least ten minutes, so we'll have the answer for you at the end of this column.

Similar to your centaur conundrum, drinking whisky doesn't make you manly; not caring what makes you manly does. And that is the common attitude of whisky-drinkers. Nobody lasts long drinking whisky to impress others--

--because A) nobody else cares what you drink unless it's gasoline. That would be impressive, and B) you either have enough gumption to stomach whisky or you're the kind of person who only cares about image.

If it's the latter, you won't enjoy it, and also you are weak and should be culled from this earth because people like you make reality TV possible. If it's the former, hooray! You've discovered that the manliest virtues are also the most attractive feminine ones: self-confidence, self-awareness, self-sufficiency. You have transcended your binary socialization! Have a whisky.

Lesson learned: it's not what you drink, but how you hoist it. Funny you had to drink whisky to learn that.

Conclusion

Whisky! To warm the body, soul and heart. You are once again alive. Though a stiff wind batters the door, you have a happy hearth and the louse-obsessed poetry of Robert Burns to keep you well.

Yea, the night is long and dark and the wind will rip the heat from your bones. But ye are tucked in your home with whisky and strength and you abide. For there is a secret to happiness that only the whisky-drinking man knows, and it is--hang on, the results are in on what makes a man...

According to this it's "his ability to nurture eggs with prolactin after the female's ovipositor deposits them into his brood pouch." Hunh. Turns out the definition of manliness is "seahorse." Tough luck, everybody.

So join me in raising a glass to seahorses, the centaurs of the ocean. There is much we can learn from them about what makes a man, and we'll do it with a drink in hand. We may grow up, and we may even let death happen to us one day, but we'll never get old, for we are preserved in whisky.

Sam Miguel
01-14-2015, 09:53 AM
From Inquirer online - - -

Beer Below Zero gets patent

9:40 AM | Wednesday, January 14th, 2015

MANILA, Philippines—After successfully expanding the Beer Below Zero (BBZ) business in Asia Pacific and recently in the United States, BBZ International Inc. is now after the trail of infringers that claim to be BBZ or have the same technology for beer freezing.

To secure BBZ’s exclusive ownership and rights to the trademarks “Beer Below Zero,” “BBZ” and “Beer Below Zero Mark,” BBZ has tapped Jimeno Cope and David Law Firm for legal assistance.

On Dec. 5, 2014, Jimeno Cope and David Law Firm announced through an official notice to the public that “Vigis Ventures International, Inc. (PH), had already successfully patented in its name its beer freezers, both as to Industrial Design and Utility Model, with the office of the Intellectual Property of the Philippines …

“Notice is hereby given to the public that any person or entity who shall use the foregoing Patents and Trademarks without any authority shall be immediately prosecuted before the courts of law and to those who are actually using them at present to immediately cease and desist from doing so,” otherwise a case will be filed against infringers before the Intellectual Property Office and other courts of law, according to the statement.

Violators may face cancellation of business permits if they continue to operate as “BBZ technology” without proper authorization.

With close to 1,500 outlets worldwide, BBZ is scheduled to launch in the Florida coast in March just in time for spring break.

BBZ remains to be a 100 percent Filipino-owned company with no affiliation with any beer brand.

BBZ was founded in 2008 by “beertrepreneurs” Luigi Nunez, Vinson CoSay and Jay-Jay Angala.

Sam Miguel
05-14-2015, 08:49 AM
250-year-old cognac brand aims for a younger market

HENNESSY MAY COME FROM VINEYARDS DATING BACK TO THE 3RD CENTURY, BUT ITS ELEGANT COMPLEX OF FLAVORS SHOULD APPEAL TO A NEW GENERATION

Anne A. Jambora

@inquirerdotnet

Philippine Daily Inquirer

12:42 AM | Thursday, May 14th, 2015

There’s reason people don’t quaff Hennessy cognac like a cheap ale. And not just because it’s expensive.

A drink that embodies a 250-year heritage deserves respect. You sip it slowly, savoring the complex aromas and flavors, allowing the drink to linger in the tongue before reveling in its smooth finish.

Named after a French town in the Charente region southwest of Paris, Hennessy is cultivated in a vineyard region whose soil has been producing wine since the third century.

Like Champagne or Bourbon or even Tequila, the Cognac label is applied only to spirits produced in this region.

“The Hennessy cognac savoir faire—the selection, maturation, and blending—is what makes us famous,” said Jean-Michel Cochet, Hennessy’s ambassadeur de la maison. “You cannot build experience overnight. This excellence starts in the vineyard.”

Hennessy was founded in 1765 by Richard Hennessy, a Catholic soldier enlisted in the Irish brigade of King Louis XV’s royal army to fight the English Protestants. Stationed near the Cognac region, he established his cognac company after the war.

Hennessy quickly built a solid reputation that by 1794, less than 20 years into the business, the company was already exporting cognac to New York. It also became the most sought-after spirit by the royal courts in Europe such as England, Russia, Spain and more.

In 1903, the first registered shipment arrived on the shores of Manila although Cochet suspects cognac had been in the country many years prior, most likely brought in by merchants from Spain. This was also the period of Hennessy’s worldwide expansion, when it started shipping cognac to India and Australia.

In 2013 Hennessy cognac supplied the world market with 5.7 million cases or 17 million bottles, securing its place as the world’s largest cognac brand.

The secret to staying on top of its game is steeped in centuries-old tradition and the precise articulation of the science involved in making cognac.

‘Water of life’

Cognac is made from distilled spirit, or what the French call the “eau de vie” (water of life) of white wine made only from the ugni blanc varietal.

The ugni blanc produces crisp, light and aromatic white wine with low alcohol content and high acidity—exactly what Hennessy needs for its cognac, said Cochet.

“The secret of cognac is making wines for distillation,” Cochet said. “We are not making wines for the table. If you have a strong wine, the distillation will bring a heavy spirit. A light wine for distillation will give an elegant spirit.”

At Hennessy, said Cochet, a double distillation is applied to all its cognac styles, whether VS, VSOP, XO or Extra. That means the white wine produced is distilled twice to separate water from the alcohol.

Hennessy, he added, is not after the alcohol per se, but rather its aromas, tastes and elements that people have come to enjoy in wine.

When wine is heated, alcohol is released through evaporation. This steam returns to its liquid form after a temperature change.

There are three parts of the distilled wine that Hennessy separates: the first to come out is the head; followed by the heart; and then the tail.

Of the three, only the heart, called brouilli, is collected for the second distillation. At this point, after a 12-hour distillation process, only 700 liters of pure alcohol will have remained from the 2,000 liters of wine.

Another 12-hour distillation and, again, only the brouilli, now called eau de vie, is collected for blending. This will be blended by the master blender and the tasting committee.

Part of Hennessy’s heritage is in the blending. Its master blender and taster, Yann Fillioux, comes from a family whose generations have been blending for Hennessy for the past 215 years.

100-percent natural

“No matter the climate condition in France, winemaking is still 100-percent natural,” said Cochet. “Irrigation is illegal. We depend on what God will give us in terms of rain and humidity, which is why, in the French winemaking system, the vintage is important because every year we produce a different wine.”

Consistency in its various styles, therefore, is the hallmark of excellence in cognac production.

A special blend of eau de vie is stored in French oak barrels for maturation. Since the oak barrels are not airtight, the eau de vie escapes through the tiny pores of the barrels, evaporating yet once again. This natural phenomenon, Cochet said, represents around 20 million bottles in the cognac region every year, and it is what is called the “Angels’ share.”

“The problem with the Angels’ share is they don’t pay,” Cochet said, laughing.

As the cellar starts to be filled with an overwhelming amount of evaporated eau de vie, some make its way back into the barrel in a process called slow oxidation. Like a maturing red wine that breathes through the corks, the eau de vie breathes through the oaks.

Over time, this produces a moist part of the barrel and the elements of the oak migrate to the eau de vie.

“The color of cognac comes from the oak. It has nothing to do with age,” Cochet said.

A young oak whose elements have yet to be spent will produce dark amber, while the old oaks will create a lighter color. New barrels generally impart a fruity, less oakey aroma, while the old oaks produce a spicier style.

To capture a younger market, Hennessy Cognac has concocted refreshing summer cocktails mixed with the Hennessy VS. Examples are Hennessy Ginger, Hennessy Berry, Hennessy Citrus, Hennessy Apple, and Hennessy Mango.

Hennessy VS is the youngest and most affordable of the lot, so throwing this into the cocktail mix is not a tragedy.

Hennessy Ginger

1½ parts Hennessy cognac

½ part fresh lime juice

¼ part simple syrup

3 fresh mint leaves, torn

3 ½ parts ginger ale

Place all ingredients except ginger ale into the shaker; half fill the shaker with crushed ice. Shake vigorously for 10 seconds. Empty contents of the shaker, including ice, into a highball glass. Top glass with more crushed ice, pour in ginger ale and stir gently with a bar spoon. Garnish with mint sprig.

Hennessy Apple (easy)

1½ parts Hennessy cognac

3½ parts apple juice (cloudy)

Pour Hennessy cognac into highball, fill the glass with cubed ice, top with good quality cloudy apple juice. Garnish with freshly sliced apple.

Sam Miguel
01-12-2016, 09:25 AM
GIRAFFE: THE 90S BAR THAT TAUGHT MAKATI HOW TO LOOSEN UP

For a good part of the 1990s, intrinsically stuffy and rigid Makati was hypnotized by the sexy, worldly vibe that was Giraffe. Jerome Gomez revisits the most iconic bar of the bullish FVR years, setting to famous catfights, headline-making brawls, and the most salacious flirting and partying the post-Faces era has seen

The writer Krip Yuson once described it as “the epitome of Swing Scene Makati—as primary a meat market as its prime location.” The location being what was, at that time, Makati’s new prize corporate address: 6750 Ayala Avenue. The bar, its façade of tinted glass panels as minimally chic as the Optima typeface of its name above the entrance doors, stood right smack in the corner of the Glorietta area’s North and Office Drive, conveniently across the circular park where many a drunk expat would take temporary respite in the ungodly hours, and where the bar’s sexual hookups would move to be quickly consummated in the shadows, should the company privileges of the evening’s catch not include a room at the nearby Makati Shangri-La.

We are talking about Giraffe Bar and Grill, of course—or, because “grill” sounds a little too pedestrian in these post-Dencio’s years, simply Giraffe, the most iconic bar of the 1990s: the posh setting to many a high-profile catfight and headline-making brawl, romantic dalliance and sexual tryst, and some of the most unforgettable Saturday nights post-Faces Makati has known. “It was the best thing that came out of the Ramos administration,” wrote Teddy Boy Locsin then. However the inveterate opinion maker may have meant it, it was the FVR years and the economic climate they created—along with its bent on the era’s buzzword “globalization”—that allowed for, and fostered, the kind of sexy, swanky, cosmopolitan world that was Giraffe.

“I would go there seven days a week,” says the artist manager Joji Dingcong, as much a fixture at the bar as R.M. de Leon’s squiggly drawings of the towering spotted animal emblazoned on the establishment’s walls. Dingcong, then line producer for the concerts of Martin Nievera, was a bagong salta from Bacolod thrust into the Manila social scene. He found himself hanging out with a large group of partyphiles that favored the chichi, worldly environs of Giraffe. They were a spirited bunch that included pre-Tatler Anton San Diego, interior designer Anton Mendoza, actor Eric Quizon, man-about-town Pepper Teehankee, the realtor Johnny Velasquez and his partner Maripi Muscat, and a very young, new-in-the-scene Tim Yap who, in those days, would arrive in a serious suit jacket, sometimes bringing flyers for events he cooked up—to the raised eyebrows of the black-clad, snooty badings sipping their vodka tonics by the ramp.

On weekdays, the vibe would go from laidback happy hour to upbeat as the evening progressed, with suits from the nearby Stock Exchange buying each other rounds. But on weekends when the bar became everyone’s last stop, it was a different story altogether. Revelers from Blue Café, Joy, or Insomnia in Malate, from ABG’s in Pasong Tamo or Louie Ysmael’s Venezia around the corner, or from pre-night out cocktails at home or a Consortium rave in some out-of-the- way warehouse—they all converged at Giraffe, filling up a space that would normally only comfortably fit 150 bodies with, well, 150 more. As soon as the clock struck 10, you’d have to elbow your way in—straight ahead and keeping to the left for the gay half of the room, and toward the right for the heterosexual half. This famous divide just sort of happened organically, as they say; there was no formal, official demarcation between sexual preferences there. As the evening soldiered on and more drinks were consumed, everyone mingled with everyone, the entire place an orgy of air kisses and meaningful glances, unfinished drinks and clouds of cigarette smoke (remember smoker-friendly Makati?), touching, and cupping, and pulling of hands for a quick round of sex—or blow—inside its infamous bathrooms. At the bar proper, as the limits of space allowed only for mild swaying, brave souls climbed on top of tables to dance to Gypsy Kings’ “Bamboleo” or Hotdog’s “Annie Batungbakal,” played by the house DJ Eric Maniquis. “Ay, bawal ba, Fritz?” a stunned Erich Edralin would ask Fritz Weber when the latter approached him after alighting from a table by the huge circular pillar. “No,” the operations manager answered. “You should do it. In fact, we encourage you to do it.” The idea being that the table dancing emboldened the women on the other side of the room to do the same.

“For a place without a dance floor,” Larry Leviste once wrote, “Giraffe gyrated like a nervous call girl at 3 A.M.”

Giraffe’s image as Manila’s tony, scintillating nightspot, it must be noted, was already its second incarnation. It began as a fine dining restaurant in May of 1993, under the ownership of Perfecto “Bubut” Quicho; Bill Cammack; Al Tengco; the father and son Felicianos, Mundy and Ting; a couple of doctor friends from Makati Medical Center; and a few other partners. As it turned out, Makati wasn’t on the lookout for another fancy place to have power lunches, surrounded as it already was by a number of chichi dining choices and hotel restaurants with their own devoted following. That it had an inflexible chef—the Grand Hyatt Honolulu import Greg Montañes, a Mexican-American unwilling to compromise his five-star-hotel menu—didn’t help the business. “The food cost was, I believe, about 70 percent [of the menu price], so naturally you couldn’t survive. Since he wouldn’t compromise by using other ingredients, then he had to go,” recalls Weber, who would join Giraffe as operations manager shortly after it switched into a bar.

Faced with what might be a losing business, the owners had to regroup. Quiet dining attracted too small a crowd, and an after-office throng willing to burn some cash couldn’t be ignored, fired up as it was by the smell of prosperity in the air—imagined or not. Malate was having a revival as a party strip, confident in its carefree, bohemian allure. Makati, on the other hand, held on to its stiff, snooty persona. It needed a loosening up, a sense of fun. Or as one denizen graphically put it, “It needed to be fucked in the ass.”

Sam Miguel
01-12-2016, 09:26 AM
^^^ (Cont'd )

Turning Giraffe into a bar would prove to be an inspired decision. The loosening up would be best illustrated by the old, cumbersome divider making way for a resplendent, gleaming oval bar that encouraged guests to go around it, make friends, form connections. The concept-change didn’t seem palatable to some of the partners, so those not keen on the bar business bowed out, leaving only the five mentioned above to usher the business into its new chapter. Quicho sought out friends willing to bring in fresh capital. He found a savior in Antonio “Tony Boy” Cojuangco, then PLDT chair, who bought all the shares from the owners on their way out.

Almost at the same time it shifted gears, Louie Cruz joined Giraffe as its PR director upon Quicho’s invitation. Son of J.V., the former Philippine ambassador to Britain, Cruz, a lifestyle columnist of Lopez-era Manila Chronicle, he of the off-the-shoulder blouses, was then best remembered for his Halakhakan parties, a series of soirees he organized after the Aquino assassination in ’83.

“The first thing I did was invite the different groups within my circle of friends through a ‘leader’ of each group,” Cruz tells me. “And those groups represent different fields in society: the fashion designers, the business people, politics, people from entertainment.” Impressively connected, the mix of people on Cruz’s first night was any upscale bar’s dream crowd, among them the designer Budji Layug and socialite Eva Abesamis de Koenigswarter. The rest escapes Cruz now. By evening’s end, everyone had a fabulous time, and the owners present, giddy about the turnout, decided dinner and drinks would be on the house. The memorable evening would plant a seed that resulted in each guest returning the favor by patronizing the place over and over, bringing along with them their equally glamorous friends who would in turn spread the word about the new happening hangout.

While the boldfaced names were a necessary ingredient for the bar’s early success, so were the expats who frequented it. “The Philippines then was at its peak economically, so there were a lot of transient businessmen around the Peninsula, the Shangri-La. Most of them, after work, or after a meeting, eventually ended up in Giraffe,” says JR Isaac, a regular.

Their presence would become an essential ingredient in creating Giraffe’s seductive urbane, international vibe. Coupled with society’s crème de la crème—Baby Fores one night, Diana Jean Lopez the next, Cristina Valdez, Doody Tuason, and Menchu Soriano—it was a combination that attracted the rest of party-crazy Manila: yuppies, preppies, the beautiful people of the PMAP, or the Professional Models Association of the Philippines, Burgos girls and discreet call boys, tomboys and trannies, politicos and businessmen, cougars and DOMs, artistas and their cohorts. Cojuangco would bring Gretchen Barretto, who he was then still wooing. Melanie Marquez and Anna Bayle were at one time regulars. Pepe Smith would be seen partying with production designer Don Escudero. Rustan’s’ Nedy Tantoco would walk in with Mario Katigbak. “Where else do you see senators schmoozing with cross-dressers, expats with boy toys, debutantes with movie stars, and PR queen Louie Cruz doing his famous finger lickin’ dance?” wrote Leviste in the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

While Giraffe did start its life as a fancy dining spot, only when it was transformed into a bar did the name eventually suit its own skin. “It finally made sense,” says Louie Cruz. “Because it was like a jungle, with all these predators and prey.” Indeed, no other animal could have symbolized the Giraffe world better, itself a creature of beauty, elegance and allure, but also forever sticking its neck out, the better for calling attention and for spotting the night’s would-be object of desire.

“There was really an undercurrent of sexual energy inside Giraffe,” says Dingcong, “so if you stayed late and drank until 3 A.M., or what we call hora de peligro [hour of peril], it was already kind of a free-for-all, choose your own target.” Even one of the bar’s signature songs expressed outright libidinous declaration. Remember Mousse T’s “Horny ’98”? That was a big hit at Giraffe.

Cruz would be the silent witness to the nightly hunter-and-hunted goings-on, watching the proceedings from his elevated corner by the kitchen, his bottle of Fundador conveniently at arm’s reach. Older men propositioning younger women, dusky women exiting the scene with white men, straight boys going home with gay boys. On some weeknights, when there wasn’t much of a crowd, Cruz would send the best-looking man in the room a drink, with the instruction for the waiter not to mention who sent it. The idea being one more drink would make the guy stay longer, encourage him to drink some more, get him going, and with his confidence boosted introduce himself to a lady, or a group of ladies, thinking one of them his secret admirer. Eventually, he would buy them drinks. And everyone, including the cash register, was happy.

“It was always happy in Giraffe,” says Alta Tan, the former model who worked as public relations officer at Faces before taking on the same hat at the 6750 haunt. “Kung may gulo man, naka-publish na ’yon agad, and it’s always talk of the town.”

Sam Miguel
01-12-2016, 09:26 AM
^^^ (Cont'd )

Turning Giraffe into a bar would prove to be an inspired decision. The loosening up would be best illustrated by the old, cumbersome divider making way for a resplendent, gleaming oval bar that encouraged guests to go around it, make friends, form connections. The concept-change didn’t seem palatable to some of the partners, so those not keen on the bar business bowed out, leaving only the five mentioned above to usher the business into its new chapter. Quicho sought out friends willing to bring in fresh capital. He found a savior in Antonio “Tony Boy” Cojuangco, then PLDT chair, who bought all the shares from the owners on their way out.

Almost at the same time it shifted gears, Louie Cruz joined Giraffe as its PR director upon Quicho’s invitation. Son of J.V., the former Philippine ambassador to Britain, Cruz, a lifestyle columnist of Lopez-era Manila Chronicle, he of the off-the-shoulder blouses, was then best remembered for his Halakhakan parties, a series of soirees he organized after the Aquino assassination in ’83.

“The first thing I did was invite the different groups within my circle of friends through a ‘leader’ of each group,” Cruz tells me. “And those groups represent different fields in society: the fashion designers, the business people, politics, people from entertainment.” Impressively connected, the mix of people on Cruz’s first night was any upscale bar’s dream crowd, among them the designer Budji Layug and socialite Eva Abesamis de Koenigswarter. The rest escapes Cruz now. By evening’s end, everyone had a fabulous time, and the owners present, giddy about the turnout, decided dinner and drinks would be on the house. The memorable evening would plant a seed that resulted in each guest returning the favor by patronizing the place over and over, bringing along with them their equally glamorous friends who would in turn spread the word about the new happening hangout.

While the boldfaced names were a necessary ingredient for the bar’s early success, so were the expats who frequented it. “The Philippines then was at its peak economically, so there were a lot of transient businessmen around the Peninsula, the Shangri-La. Most of them, after work, or after a meeting, eventually ended up in Giraffe,” says JR Isaac, a regular.

Their presence would become an essential ingredient in creating Giraffe’s seductive urbane, international vibe. Coupled with society’s crème de la crème—Baby Fores one night, Diana Jean Lopez the next, Cristina Valdez, Doody Tuason, and Menchu Soriano—it was a combination that attracted the rest of party-crazy Manila: yuppies, preppies, the beautiful people of the PMAP, or the Professional Models Association of the Philippines, Burgos girls and discreet call boys, tomboys and trannies, politicos and businessmen, cougars and DOMs, artistas and their cohorts. Cojuangco would bring Gretchen Barretto, who he was then still wooing. Melanie Marquez and Anna Bayle were at one time regulars. Pepe Smith would be seen partying with production designer Don Escudero. Rustan’s’ Nedy Tantoco would walk in with Mario Katigbak. “Where else do you see senators schmoozing with cross-dressers, expats with boy toys, debutantes with movie stars, and PR queen Louie Cruz doing his famous finger lickin’ dance?” wrote Leviste in the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

While Giraffe did start its life as a fancy dining spot, only when it was transformed into a bar did the name eventually suit its own skin. “It finally made sense,” says Louie Cruz. “Because it was like a jungle, with all these predators and prey.” Indeed, no other animal could have symbolized the Giraffe world better, itself a creature of beauty, elegance and allure, but also forever sticking its neck out, the better for calling attention and for spotting the night’s would-be object of desire.

“There was really an undercurrent of sexual energy inside Giraffe,” says Dingcong, “so if you stayed late and drank until 3 A.M., or what we call hora de peligro [hour of peril], it was already kind of a free-for-all, choose your own target.” Even one of the bar’s signature songs expressed outright libidinous declaration. Remember Mousse T’s “Horny ’98”? That was a big hit at Giraffe.

Cruz would be the silent witness to the nightly hunter-and-hunted goings-on, watching the proceedings from his elevated corner by the kitchen, his bottle of Fundador conveniently at arm’s reach. Older men propositioning younger women, dusky women exiting the scene with white men, straight boys going home with gay boys. On some weeknights, when there wasn’t much of a crowd, Cruz would send the best-looking man in the room a drink, with the instruction for the waiter not to mention who sent it. The idea being one more drink would make the guy stay longer, encourage him to drink some more, get him going, and with his confidence boosted introduce himself to a lady, or a group of ladies, thinking one of them his secret admirer. Eventually, he would buy them drinks. And everyone, including the cash register, was happy.

“It was always happy in Giraffe,” says Alta Tan, the former model who worked as public relations officer at Faces before taking on the same hat at the 6750 haunt. “Kung may gulo man, naka-publish na ’yon agad, and it’s always talk of the town.”

Sam Miguel
01-14-2016, 03:00 PM
Scots left reeling as Canadian whisky named world's best

Saffron Alexander

20 NOVEMBER 2015 • 11:28AM

The Scots are renowned for their whisky but, for the second year in a row, whisky from another country has been named the best in the world.

Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye, a Canadian malt whisky, was awarded 97.5 marks out of 100 in Jim Murray's Whisky Bible, earning it the title of world whisky of the year.

Despite its stellar reputation in the whisky world, not a single Scottish whisky made the top five.

Jim Murray's 2016 World Whiskies of the Year
Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye (Canada) - £47 a bottle
Pikesville Straight Rye (USA) - £33 a bottle
Midleton Dair Ghaelach (Ireland) - £180 a bottle
William Larue Weller Bourbon (Bot.2014) (USA) - £65 a bottle
Suntory Yamazaki Mizunara (Bot.2014) (Japan) - £45 a bottle

Editor of Scotchwhisky.com Becky Paskin said: "While it's disappointing that Scotch has been omitted from Murray's top five again, it's heartening to see that he's included a real mix of whiskies from around the world that aren't all selected from the luxury sphere.

"The absence of Scotch, however puzzling, has no bearing at all on the quality of whisky coming from Scotland. Interest in world whisky is increasing and and drinkers are likely to want to experiment with the medley of styles and flavours available.

"It's important to remember that, whether you agree with Murray's top five or not, this is just one man's opinion. My advice would be to go out and taste these whiskies for yourself."

Despite not winning the coveted whisky of the year award, Scotland's Glenfarclas 1957 Family Cask 2110 did win the single cask of the year award.

Whisky expert Murray tasted more than 1000 whiskies before deciding on the Crown Royal and called it a masterpiece: "Rye, that most eloquent of grains, not just turning up to charm and enthral but to also take us through a routine which reaches new heights of beauty and complexity.

"To say this is a masterpiece is barely doing it justice."

Tom Sandham, one half of the Thinking Drinkers, said: "The news of a Canadian winner might surprise some, but it shouldn't.

"The country has extraordinary whisky heritage. And rye is one of the original grains in North American whiskey production, it has long been re-asserting itself with connoisseurs and leading bartenders who use it in classic cocktails. So to see it break through here is evidence of the grains's resurgent popularity.

"But remember this is only one view, and a nice bit of publicity for man, brand and whisky as a whole, but the only way you'll determine what you like is if you try things. Lots of different things. The great thing about whisky is that a wider demographic is now engaging, which is excellent because there are hundreds of stunning whiskies being made all around the world right now."

Yvonne Briese, Vice President of Crown Royal said: "Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye showcases the rye whisky that has been such an integral component of the Crown Royal Deluxe blend since 1939. This is a testament to the unbelievable blending and distilling that’s been taking place in Gimli for over 75 years.

"We are thrilled that Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye has been named World Whisky of the Year."

Some whisky connoisseurs were sceptical of the win, with specialist whisky author Charles MacLean telling The Times the success of foreign winners was a marketing ploy: "You should compare like with like. These whiskies from around the world are all made to be different. Canadian whisky allows for all sorts of additives, such as prune juice to sweeten it.

"This is forbidden in Scotch, which has strictly defined terms of how it can be made. It must have the flavour derived only from the raw materials: barley, water and yeast. Nothing may be added."

However, Murray defended his choice robustly: "Last year people were shocked when I gave [Japanese whisky] Yamazaki the award - until they tasted it. Then they saw it was not the affront to Scotch they first thought and something truly extraordinary.

"This year, doubtless there will be many more eyebrows raised because rarely is Canada mentioned when it comes to the world's top whiskies. But, again, I have no doubt people finding the bottling I tasted will be blown away with this whisky's uncompromising and unique beauty. It certainly puts the rye into Canadian rye."

The winners in full

SCOTCH

Scotch Whisky of the Year - Glenfarclas 1957 Family Casks #2110

Single Malt of the Year (Multiple Casks) - Glen Grant 10yo

Single Malt of the Year (Single Cask) - Glenfarclas 1957 Family Casks #2110

Scotch Blend of the Year - The Last Drop 50yo

Scotch Grain of the Year - Clan Deny Cambus 1987 25yo #9320

Scotch Vatted Malt of the Year - Compass Box The Lost Blend

SINGLE MALT SCOTCH

No Age Statement (Multiple Casks) - Ardberg Supernova 2009

No Age Statement (Runner Up) - Laphroaig An Cuan Mor

10 Years & Under (Multiple Casks) - Glen Grant 10yo

10 Years & Under (Single Cask) - Saar Gruwehewwel

11-15 Years (Multiple Casks) - Gordon and MacPhail Connoisseurs Choice Strathmill 2002

11-15 Years (Single Cask) - SMWS 4.199 (Highland Park 1999)

16-21 Years (Multiple Casks) - Old Pulteney 21yo

16-21 Years (Single Cask) - Old Malt Cask Highland Park 1998

22-27 Years (Multiple Casks) - Glen Moray Port Cask Finish

22-27 Years (Single Cask) - Wemyss Kirsch Gateau (Bunnahabhain)

28-34 Years (Multiple Casks) - Tomatin 1988 25yo Batch 2

28-34 Years (Single Cask) - Glenfarclas 1985 Family Casks #2593

35-40 Years (Multiple Casks) - Tomatin 36yo Rare Casks Batch 1

35-40 Years (Single Cask) - BenRiach 1977 Batch 11

41 Years & Over (Multiple Casks) - Ledaig 42 Years Old

41 Years & Over (Single Cask) - Glenfarclas 1957 Family Casks #2110

BLENDED SCOTCH

No Age Statement (Standard) - Ballantine’s Finest

No Age Statement (Premium) - Ballantine’s Limited

5-12 Years - Johnie Walker Black Label

13-18 Years - Ballantine’s 17

19 – 25 Years - Royal Salute 21

26 – 50 Years - The Last Drop 50 Years Old Sherry Wood

IRISH WHISKEY

Irish Whiskey of the Year - Midleton Dair Ghaelach

Irish Pot Still Whiskey of the Year - Midleton Dair Ghaelach

Irish Single Malt of the Year - SMWS 118.3

Irish Blend of the Year - Powers Gold Label

AMERICAN WHISKEY

Bourbon of the Year - William Larue Weller 2014

Rye of the Year - Pikesville Rye 110 Proof

US Micro Whisky of the Year - Notch 12

US Micro Whisky of the Year (Runner Up) - McCarthy’s Batch U14-01

BOURBON

No Age Statement (Multiple Barrels) - William Larue Weller 2014

No Age Statement (Single Barrel) - Buffalo Trace Single Oak Project Barrel 20

9 Years & Under - Booker’s Bourbon 63.95%

10-17 Years (Multiple Barrels) - Eagle Rare 17yo 2014

RYE

No Age Statement - Thomas H Handy

Up to 10 Years - Pikesville Straight Rye 110 Proof

11 Years & Over - Sazerac 18yo 2014

WHEAT

Wheat Whiskey of the Year - Parker’s Heritage 13yo / Release 8

CANADIAN WHISKY

Canadian Whisky of the Year - Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye

JAPANESE WHISKY

Japanese Whisky of the Year - Yamazaki Mizunara 2014 (Japan only)

Single Malt of the Year (Multiple Barrels) - Yamazaki Mizunara 2014 (Japan only)

Single Malt of the Year (Single Barrel) - SMWS 119.14

EUROPEAN WHISKY

European Whisky of the Year (Multiple) - English Whisky Co. Chapter 16 / Peated Sherry Cask

European Whisky of the Year (Single) - Kornog Taouarc’h Chweec’hved 14 BC

WORLD WHISKIES

Asian Whisky of the Year - Amrut Greedy Angels 10yo

Southern Hemisphere Whisky of the Year - Heartwood The Good Convict

Joescoundrel
11-21-2017, 02:22 PM
9 Old-School Pinoy Beers You Were Too Young to Drink

Or you probably weren't alive back then for these tito tagayan hits.

By MAAN D'ASIS PAMARAN | 3 days ago

Craft beers may be the literal and figurative buzz these days, but it may take some time before the traditional tambays get their taste of these golden brewed beverages on tap. The market is still dominated by the bottled brews that we have all grown used to - San Miguel Pale Pilsen, Red Horse (that comes with the corresponding Happy Horse urban legend) and San Mig Light (mahaba-habang inuman!).

For those who have started drinking from the '80s onwards, though, they would recall a time when there were more choices that could be bought from the neighborhood suking tindahan. We look back at some of these drinks that our titos, titas, and tatays enjoyed back in the day.

Gold Eagle Beer

It was a light-bodied low-cost beer that was made for "easy drinking" by the San Miguel Corporation. The target market was the workingman, with endorsers such as Ka Freddie Aguilar in a sepia-toned homage to the simple life in the countryside. A cheeky commercial with Idol April Boy Regino extolled the virtues of having a cold one as a reward to getting over daily challenges while dishing out innuendoes about a farmer na magaling mag-araro, and a mechanic na magaling mangalikot, with pretty girls smilingly serving the beverages.

Stag Pale Pilsen

Because of its cheap price, this slightly bitter beer with a "complex" aroma by Asia Brewery found an unintended market ? high school boys sneaking in a few drinks at house parties. Its most notable endorser was action star Jeric Raval, who is said to embody the young market at the time, with a campaign titled "Sa Daigdig ng Malaya" where the message is you can be anything you want to be.

Manila Beer

It was sold as a low-cost extra strong beer, perfect for hanging out with the boys. It was launched in 1985 and has since been reformulated and relaunched by Asia Brewery sometime in 2010 as a walang sabit and no-hangover beverage to reach a young, hip market.

Beer Hausen

Its main draw was that it was a "natural beer" because it was brewed using mountain spring water. It was the first beer brand launched by Asia Brewery in 1982 to go against San Miguel's decades of dominance.

Since beer and sports traditionally go together, here's a little basketball trivia: Beer Hausen had its own PBA team headlined by El Presidente Ramon Fernandez. It was the start of the Fernandez-Jaworski rivalry as the two former Toyota teammates battled it out for several seasons for hardcourt dominance.

Carlsberg

In 1987, Asia Brewery received the license to brew the international brand in the Philippines, and it received so much hype. Pinoys who wanted to be seen as more worldly jumped on the chance to try this new premium beer that came in a green bottle instead of the usual amber/brown. Taste-wise, the Euro pale did not really fit with the Filipino palate, and its aroma was a sharp contrast to the sweetish smell of "chico" that Pinoys are used to.

Beer na Beer

It was originally launched by Asia Brewery as Beer Pale Pilsen in 1988, and it caused a big controversy in Philippine industry as San Miguel claimed copyright infringement and unfair competition. Asia Brewery won the first round at the Pasig Regional Trial Court but the decision was reversed by the Court of Appeals in 1991, Asia Brewery was prohibited from using the brand name. Beer Pale Pilsen was then renamed Beer na Beer.

The big to-do didn't stop there either. In a battle that was said to be the clash of the Titans, Lucio Tan-led Asia Brewery filed a case at the Marikina Regional Trial court against then-Danding Cojuanco-led San Miguel in 1997, claiming that San Miguel allegedly hoarded, smashed, and illegally removed Asia Brewery's empty beer bottles and plastic crates from circulation.

Flavor-wise, Beer na Beer is said to be preferred by 9 out of 10 beer drinkers in a blind taste test, for its "Smooth, clean, and refreshing" beer taste that won three Monde Selection Gold Medals in Brussels.

Lagerlite

Drinking beer was often seen as the province of manly men, but the entry of San Miguel's Lagerlite showed the successful women can imbibe too. With commercials that featured then-newscaster Loren Legarda, pop singer Joey Albert, and director Laurice Guillen taking a break, many of Manila's career women took notice and started to celebrate their own personal successes with a cold beer in hand.

The tagline was "Lady, you deserve a break," and it was a groundbreaking move that liberated many women from societal expectations?to give you a picture of how it was, the only other alcoholic drink marketed towards women at the time was Maria Clara Sangria (you get the picture, right?). Of course, it has to be said that Lagerlite was originally targeted towards men but they did not take to it well, thinking it was not "macho" to drink light beer, so advertising shifted to women.

Max Premium Beer

Do you remember Max Beer? The internet doesn't. What we do know is that it was the second beer product launched by Asia Brewery, launched in 1983 as the company's answer to San Miguel's Red Horse.

Halili Beer

This brand of beer was said to have gone head to head with San Miguel in the 1960s. Halili Beer was manufactured by former Bulacan Governor Fortunato Halili's F.F. Halili Enterprises at their plant located in Balintawak along with non-alcoholic drinks Mission Orange and Goody Root Beer. They also had their own transportation line, Halili Transit & Taxicab. Rumor was that it was so successful San Miguel tried to buy them out.

Joescoundrel
11-21-2017, 02:24 PM
^ I also remember Blue Ice Beer and Labatt Ice Beer, but those were from the 1990's.

Joescoundrel
03-08-2018, 08:41 AM
Why Scotch whisky is no longer just your father's drink

By: Micky Fenix -Columnist Philippine Daily Inquirer / 07:10 AM March 08, 2018

With much food and drink vying for the attention of diners these days, it takes a worldwide event to remind us about a nation's cooking and its extraordinary spirits.

One of these is Gout de France, a celebration of French cuisine established by Alain Ducasse in 2015. This happens annually on March 21 in 150 countries, with some 3,000 chefs participating, including 18 in the Philippines.

Scotland, on the other hand, fetes its renowned drink through the liquor company Diageo. International Scotch Day is on Feb. 8, with many places throughout the world holding tasting sessions, lectures about this revered Scotch whisky, and general merriment with socializing and music.

Master class

My interest was to learn what makes each Scotch whisky different. And the man conducting the master class I attended was Ervin Trykowski, introduced as the company’s "ambassador."

One expected a James Bond figure with a Scottish accent to charm us into the world of whisky. Instead, here was someone who seemed too young for the role - hip, fast talker, quirky movements, and who even had a flask pocket in his boots.

But this must be the message Scotland and Diageo wanted to send: Scotch whisky is no longer just your father's drink. It is also for young men and women—drank straight (neat), on the rocks or mixed in cocktails.

Trykowski, despite his age and demeanor, is a veteran at setting up bars in the trendy Finnieston in Glasgow. He was the Scotch ambassador in Scotland and now goes around the world promoting the product.

In front of us, his students for the day, were six glasses. Our first lesson was how not to drink scotch. Don't swirl it as you would brandy. Just drink it, because flavor is the most important quality.

There we were, with just a minute sampling of the 400 million bottles of scotch. And just to compare figures, our teacher said the population of Scotland is only 5 million.

During the tasting, Trykowski said mixing the scotch whisky with ice helped to bond the atoms together, allowing the drinker to get more texture. Ice was then passed around.

Richer and riper

Of the six whiskies, the Johnnie Walker brand is familiar. Black Label - "considered the best whisky in the world," according to Trykowski - is blended from four different distillery areas in Scotland.

I was made aware of a Double Black Label when I asked a friend what his favorite scotch whisky is. But his preference is Japanese whisky, which is not considered scotch whisky.

How uncanny that, as I wrote this, there was a feature on a Japanese company that bought a Scotch whisky company and is operating at a distillery in Scotland. Thus, its product can be called Scotch whisky.

Trykowski described the Johnnie Walker Gold Label Reserve as richer and riper, a celebration bottle that's great with ice cream.

The Johnnie Walker Blue Label, meanwhile, the most expensive brand, was said to have been a favorite of a former Philippine president.

Our teacher was effusive in his praise, describing the Blue Label as the smoothest, with flavor hints of green apples, candy, ginger and rose - if you can imagine all that in one or two sips.

But I must agree with Trykowski and with the former Philippine president. Of the six whiskies before us, the Blue Label was also this neophyte's choice.

Single malts

The rest were three single malts, meaning, each was processed in a single distillery, even if it takes six distilleries to produce enough bottles, such as the Singleton of Dufftown 12. Europeans are partial to this dark whisky because it exudes the fruity flavors of cherry, apple, red currant and raspberries.

It is Dalwhinnie Distillers Edition that has a more floral scent, possibly from being double-matured in Oloroso casks that are also used to store sherry in Spain.

Finally, there was Talisker 10, produced in the Isle of Skye in a 200-year-old distillery. It takes on the smell of the place, so the flavor is fiery, peat-smoke, a bit medicinal. When Trykowski mentioned heather as one of the aromas, that brought me back to Edinburgh, where the violet flowers of heather grow wild along the hills and roads, and made me wish I was back there - but this time with Scotch whisky in hand.