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Category Archives: Beverages

Next time you’re in Finland…

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This is the national drink of Finland, or so I am told…

It is called a “long drink” and it is very refreshing. It’s a mix of gin and grapefruit soda (which didn’t sound very good at first) and one sip convinced me that we need to import this to the U.S.A. pronto! Or as the Finns would say “nopeasti”…

Back to the long drink and where it got it’s origin (according to wikipedia):

long drink or tall drink is an alcoholic mixed drink with a relatively large volume (> 12 cl, frequently 16–40 cl or between 5–9 fluid ounces).[1]

A long drink will have a tall glass full of mixer, in contrast to a short drink which has less mixer. Short drinks are generally stronger since both types tend to contain the same amount of alcohol. Long drinks are therefore generally more dilute than short drinks.

In Finland, long drink refers either to a mixed drink made from gin and, most commonly, grapefruit soda, or to a fermented drink that comes close to the taste of gin and grapefruit juice.

for more on this drink in Finland please click here.

Ok, back to the drink. I was lucky enough to have friends who brought a duffel bag back of this stuff from Finland and they were generous enough to share it with me.

It’s great over ice with lime. According to wikipedia, this same fast can be concocted with a 1 to 5 part mix of gin and grapefruit soda. If I get around to trying this with Squirt and some cheap gin, I’ll let you know if it’s worth a try.

But if you ever find yourself in Finland, order a Hartwall Long Drink and bring an extra duffel bag to bring back a stash!

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Apple Cider Margaritas…good and good for you…honest…

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Oh how I love Fall with the crisp nights and sunny days, plus with the apple crop comes the abundance of apple cider.

Here is a delicious drink which you can make as a large punch, or a single drink (but you’ll regret it and end up making more…) We made a pitcher by quadrupling the recipe and it was the best solution.

Thanks to my friend Rebecca for improving the original recipe. This one is a keeper for sure.

This recipe is for one drink

Apple Cider Margaritas
Ingredients:
1 ounce Grand Marnier
2 ounces gold tequila (use GOOD tequila, not great, but decent)
5 ounces real apple cider (not apple juice)
orange slices and apple slices
cinnamon + cane sugar for glass rimming
cinnamon sticks for garnish

Directions:

  1. In a shaker or a tall glass add the Grand Marnier, tequila and apple cider and shake stir to mix.
  2.  Add a few spoonfuls of cane sugar, coarse sugar and cinnamon to a plate. Run an orange segment around the edge of the glass, then press into the cinnamon sugar mixture to coat the rim.
  3. Add an orange slice to the bottom of the glass, fill with ice, then add the cider mixture.
  4. Garnish with an apple slice and cinnamon sticks, and sprinkle a bit of cinnamon on top of the apple slice. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Spice for grown ups

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Oooh 2 of my favorite things…pumpkins and owls… I discovered this ale on friday and I’m hooked.

Crafted by Elysian Brewing Company, it is perfectly balanced with enough pumpkin and spices to taste like a fall beverage should without tasting like dessert. Both the men and women at our table liked this ale. The brewery’s site describes the process as being “brewed with seven and a half pounds of pumpkin per barrel and spiced in conditioning with ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and allspice”. Check out the ale’s stats here.

This is a seasonal ale and you should try a glass before it’s gone. Trust me, you’ll want to buy a 6 pack for your fridge.

thanks to www.seattleite.com for the image

 

Summatime Summatime Sum Sum Summatime for Milo’s tea!

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It’s mid June and even in the Northwest the forecast is for warm days and nights. It’s iced tea time! (Yes, I know that iced tea is a good, year ’round beverage, but it’s just so much better on a warm day with a slice of lemon, ice clinking, and beads of condensation gathering on the glass.)

Let me introduce you to  Milo’s Famous Tea; a fantastic prepared iced tea. It hails from Alabama, where iced tea is in fact a year ’round beverage, and they are pretty particular about their food and drink. I was lucky enough to live in Alabama, and Southerners are true food experts. Their restaurants boast the most regionally diverse fare anywhere in the country. Even simple potlucks rivals most good dinner parties anywhere else.

So imagine my delight when I spotted Milo’s in Idaho!

Milo’s is sold in gallon jugs in the refrigerated case. It is made fresh and has an expiration date within the next 30 days, so you know there aren’t any preservatives. In fact, all their tea is made from tea leaves, not powdered tea. The mere fact that it doesn’t live on the shelf tells you it’s fresh.

There is sweet tea, unsweet, and no-calorie sweet tea. My favorite is the unsweet, but every so often a good glass of sweet tea is just the ticket.

This tea is flavorful, and strong enough to handle ice-melt. I could drink it all day, and when I get home from work I pour a tall, refreshing glass with just a splash of organic lemonade.

Check out the Milo’s web site and see where you can buy a few gallons. It will be your favorite iced tea by the time you finish your first glass.

Photo credit: AL.com

Grapefruit Beer, breakfast of champs….

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I tried Stiegl Grapefruit Beer tonight, and it was really refreshing, delicious and curiously thirst quenching. The grapefruit flavor is right out in front and is the perfect compliment to the beer.

The Stiegl web site describes it as:

“The Stiegl-Radler Grapefruit is a mix of Stiegl-Goldbräu and fruit juice that is invariably natural and has no artificial sweeteners added to it. The grapefruit juice lends this a naturally cloudy appearance and a tangy fruit flavor, creating a succulent and fruity taste sensation with a refreshing finish.”

Sure, it’s not a manly-man IPA, but it’s one that I can drink without grimacing. It’ll be perfect for days on the lake, or after a day of skiing.

Give it a try and let me know what you think.

DRY Soda is anything but dry and is fantastic!

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DRY Soda

Summer is here and I’ve been looking for a refreshing beverage that is 1.low in sugar and 2.tasty 3.could serve as a mixer with vodka, etc.

Here it is! DRY Soda makes flavored seltzer water for adults. It’s all natural with only 4 ingredients! It comes from Seattle and the company is committed to helping small farmers and producers and giving back to those communities.

From their web site:

“DRY Soda is excited to continue its commitment to local food producers through DRY Gives Back. DRY Soda celebrates our country’s independent farmers and producers and we want to inspire others to seek out and buy local foods whenever possible. In addition, DRY Soda will continue to sponsor events that recognize and support local food and producers.”

It comes in multiple flavors: Blood Orange, Ginger, Vanilla Bean, Apple, Cherry, Rhubarb(!), Lavender, Juniper Berry, Cucumber, Wild Lime, and Pear. Not all flavors are available at all retailers.

I have tried the Cucumber and it’s perfect on a warm day, and might be great mixed with a little gin. The blood orange is just a hint bitter and very refreshing and the Vanilla is like a cream soda without all of the sugar. It takes me back to grade school field trips because Cream Soda was what I would bring with my sack lunch.

The sodas come in bottles and cans, and cost about $1.25 each and they are truly worth the cost. Visit their web site for all of the info.

I will be posting cocktails made with these soon. Here’s a link to DRY’s cocktail recipes.

Cheers!