Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Quote of the Day

Stolen from Mysideofthebar.blogspot.com (thanks Randy) Not all chemicals are bad. Without chemicals like hydrogen and oxygen there would be no water, a vital ingredient in beer - Dave Barry

The Booze Test


Another stolen from Randy’s twitter over at Mysideofthebar

This is actually pretty good….two questions actually had me guessing.

Give it a try and post your results in the comments section below.


Created by OnePlusYou - Free Online Dating

Don’t eat the Shepherd’s Pie


Ok, when the police find a dead woman in the freezer of the pub, visions of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre come into my head.

“The landlord of a Norfolk pub five miles from royal residence Sandringham House has been arrested after the body of a woman, believed to be his fiancĂ©, was found in the freezer in a put outhouse.
Mike Tucker, 49, and Becky Thorpe, 29, had run the 18th-century Compasses Inn in Snettisham since Easter Sunday last year, and became engaged in September.
Thorpe had not been seen for a week before the frozen body – which will will not be formally identified until early this week – was discovered by an employee last Tuesday lunchtime.
On Tuesday night, Tucker was arrested at a hotel on the Isle of Wight, where he had claimed to be looking to buy a pub. “


HERE is the article

I told you drinking Tequila was good for you


An ingredient found in the Tequila plant could help fight diseases like Osteoporosis.  They're called fructans a non-digestible carbohydrate found in the agave plant, which is the source for tequila.

Experimental studies show the ingredient could reduce the risk of not only the bone disease, but diabetes as well.

As a result, researchers with Mexico's National Polytechnic Institute believe the agave plant could ultimately supply a healthful food additive by adding it to foods like ice cream.

Monday, March 29, 2010

42 Below just went out the window

There are some crass things in this world.  I should know, I’ve done a lot of them…..but that is irrelevant.  Of all the things I’ve done, I’ve never disrespected a Veteran’s Memorial.

Now there is a product that has done just THAT, 42 Below Vodka.

During the recent finals for the 42 Below Cocktail Worldcup in New Zealand, the 42 logo was shone on the National War Memorial .  image

While appalling and in poor taste, what I think is even worse are the following comments and actions:

“42 Below chief executive Paul Dibbayawan apologized last night but blamed independent organizers.

"The final of the 42 Below Cocktail World Cup ... was organized by an independent events company and the decision to project the 42 Below logo on the carillon was theirs. However, it was our event and we take full responsibility for this action.

"In light of this oversight we would like to offer the RNZRSA a donation of $420 and a case of 42 Below vodka." “

$420???? Give me a break.  What a nice tongue-in-cheek way to get the number 42 out there more.  Plus a case of Vodka.  Who do these guys think runs the memorial……Madonna?  Throw in the coy “It’s not our fault answer” and you really get a clear picture of the type of company 42 Below Vodka is.

Vodka has really gotten some bad publicity lately.  With Madonna, P-Diddy and now this, if I were a distiller, I know how I would succeed….just do the opposite of these idiots.

Oh well.  I know what my next vodka purchase will NOT be, and considering how many veterans troll this blog, I can almost assume what theirs won’t be as well.

Cheers 42 Below…..you make my selection process easier.

A toast on a sad anniversary

image Please join me tonight in raising a toast in memory the 50th anniversary of Britain’s worst peacetime fire disaster, the Cheapside Street blaze.

Why is that here on Smokes and Booze?  Because 19 men were killed when a city centre whisky warehouse exploded.

It really drives home that those men and women who protect our daily interests are heroes, and they deserve our respect.

So, to all those firefighters who have made the ultimate sacrifice…thank you, and Cheers.

You gotta be F**KING kidding




I knew that would get your attention.  :) 

HERE is an article where the EU has now approved the name of FUCKING Hell Beer.  You see, there is a town in Austria called Fucking and entrepreneurs want to cash in on the name.

I think it is a great idea, and can’t wait until my next trip to Europe to pick up a bottle.

What do you think (use the comments section below).

Watchdog or Booze Whiner…You Decide

I recently ran across an article published by the Marlin Institute (alcohol industry “Watchdog”), in which they point out that the following states have not raised beer taxes in 50 years (or More) : Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

This article goes on to point out that

“This is graphic proof that Big Alcohol lobbying efforts are extremely effective at preventing sound public policy and balanced state budgets,” said Michael Scippa, advocacy director at Marin Institute. “Their well-funded influence peddling is especially effective when coupled with generous campaign contributions.”

Come on people.  This isn’t a watchdog group, but more likely a group promoting temperance. 

Perhaps Beer Taxes haven’t been raised in these states due to the will of the people.  States that think Sin Tax is evil.

Just because there have been no raise of taxes, that doesnt mean the EVIL Beer and Liquor lobby is running the show. 

I’m not an alcohol or tobacco lobby, and I know I totally disagree with any laws that punish me for being a consumer, and that is exactly what this type of legislation accomplishes.  In fact, I am proud that MO is in the 30-40 year range.

A quick review of their WEBSITE show’s their true agenda…..total banning of alchohol.


  • Stop Alcopops – Banning of drinks such as Mikes Hard Lemonade, because it *GASP* is causing children to drink.  What a bunch of shit. 
  • Stop Alcoholic Energy Drinks – Hey, I hated JOOZE too, but I shouldn’t be able to dictate a ban.
  • Out of Home Advertising - Marin Institute's Charge for Harm campaign aims to hold Big Alcohol accountable for the tremendous harm its products cause. 

Groups like this and MADD strive to impress their moral good upon the people under the auspices of “It’s for the Children”.  Give me a break.  Our son has been around alcohol his entire life, and he is an intelligent child that realizes it is his choice.  We don’t offer, he knows he has to be 21 to drink and when he get’s there….he will make an educated decision. 

Do we really need groups like this in society?  How much is the operating budget of the Marlin Institute?  I bet if you took all these groups and cut their funding, it would have a better impact in the communities.

I guess this is why homebrewing is up…..to keep other peoples morals and taxation aspirations out of my home.

Drunks through the ages


HERE is a fantastic article pertaining to the extremes the police used to go to in Birmingham UK. 

The information was compiled by the Watch Committee of the City of Birmingham, which was set up by the police to enforce the Licensing Act of 1902 as an attempt to use legislation to arrest anyone found drunk in public place and unable to take care of themselves.

The pictures and bios are great….and I even think I spot a few people I know……




Bob Hope?


I don’t know who she is, but man she looks mean.


A Skinny Nate?


Nice hat Tori :)


And finally….is that you Jeff W.?

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Star Wars and Beer


So, after watching the fantastic movie Beer Wars, I was wondering……what would Star Wars be like if crossed with Beer?  Now, I know all of you that attend Cons have probably tried all the nuance “Star Wars Cocktails”, but imagine the marketing of beer as it stands today.

Enter my best friend GOOGLE….and behold the results:



While the ARTOO’s looks good, it actually reminds me more of a soda can than a beer can.  I mean, other than a Jawa….who else could get excited about pounding a few Droids?  Plus, remember THIS Pepsi campaign?


Now I like this one.  Subtle and tastefull….yet only a true geek would get it.  I could see Burt Reynolds smuggling some of this across state lines.


Meh…..I could live it or without it.  Although this is one of two Heineken Parodies in the list.


Here you have built in marketability and name recognition with Billy Dee.  You know he was only given a TOKEN payment for Star Wars anyway…so this one makes perfect sense.  Help a brotha out and pick up some Hoth 45.


Now this strikes me as to what the guys at Lucas Marketing would come up with if they ever did sign off on a beer line.  Some people have to much time on their hands.


And finally, Imperial Stout Trooper.  The label looks almost real doesn’t it.  How about ….because it IS.  Brewed for a limited time (now since discontinued) by New England Brewing, this beer even scored high by reviewers.  I know if it would have ever been made local….it would’ve been a staple at our house.  Great Job guys.

Rather than slaying our childhood by re-working and editing already classic movies, plus putting out crap like the prequels…..George should be focusing on maintaining the brand to a grownup generation…….the beer drinkers that we are.

BTW….what would Yoda think of all this?


I think he is just fine

Monday, March 22, 2010

Obama Settles Beer Bet With Yuengling


Well, after some of the greatest hockey I have ever see…..somebody has to lose.  As far as the Olympics goes, it was the USA to Canada in the Gold Medal match, but as far as beer goes….the jury is still out.

You see, typically during these type of events, politicians like to place friendly wagers and loser sends the winner something their region is famous for.

President Obama and Canadian Prime Minster Harper can’t get this right, instead with Harper wanting a case of Molsen.  While not a BAD beer, why didn’t he ask for something unique from the US?

On top of that, Barry sent an additional case….a case of Yuengling.  At first, I thought….WTH is that?  But a little research showed it to be America’s oldest brewery.  Ok, that is kinda cool…..but I really do believe it was for posturing.

First, Yuengling is cheap.  At $21 a case (bottles), it is cheaper than Michelob Ultra or Amber Bock.  Hell, it’s almost the same price as a case (bottles) of Stag, which I would prefer to get.

Secondly, it’s a regional beer that nobody has heard of outside of PA and part of the east coast. 

Finally, the presser says that is the President’s preferred beer.  I’m sorry, but I have to call Bullshit.  If you recall the famous “Beer Summit”, BO drank a Bud Lite in an attempt to connect with the average man.  Now you expect me to believe that the President of the United States, a person catered to the world over prefers a micro-brew in the middle of nowhere and settles for Bud Lite at home?  I think it is an attempt to garner attention for some lobbyist or friend tied to the brewery. 

Considering previous gaffes (iPods and DVDs), why do I get the impression that the Whitehouse told some staffer to run to 7-11 and “Pick up something American”.  To bad they didn’t get something good like Sam Adams.

Way to go Barry.  Way to go……………


                 (I’m sure he’s thinking…..WTF is this)

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Tequila and Whiskey (Music)


I love Irish Music, I love history, I love Tequila and I love Whiskey.  So how could I not love the Chieftain’s new album San Patricio.  An album which:

“The musical soul of two nations, Ireland and Mexico, are movingly brought to life in San Patricio, the latest international collaboration by six-time Grammy winners The Chieftains – the leading practitioners of Irish traditional music for the past four decades”

The album takes it’s theme and name from John Riley, an Irish immigrant to the US, recruited to fight against the Mexicans.

However, when Riley learned that he would be fighting fellow Catholics, he formed a battalion of about 200 men — (the San Patricios or St Patrick’s Battalion ) to fight with the Mexicans.

After several fierce battles, the San Patricios were captured by the US army, who viewed them as traitors and punished them, executing some.

Now The Chieftain’s have successfully merged two vastly different (IMO) musical styles into something beautiful and engaging. 

It’s definitely worth a listen, if nothing more than the music, yet the story itself is pretty incredible. 

My favorite tracks are

    • Lulliby of the Dead – A haunting Uilleann pipes dirge.
    • Marching to Battle – The intro music on the video below
    • Danza de Concheros – A Mexican themed dance with Mariachi Guitars and tin whistles.

Here is a clip on the behind the scenes to give you a taste.


P-Diddy Endorsement, is it worth it?


While in South Beach this last week, I had a chance to sample some great drinks (we really mixed it up this time) and party with some friends.

While at the club MANGOS, I saw everyone drinking  a vodka named  Ciroc.  Now, when I say EVERYONE, I mean everyone.  Aside from me ordering Bushmills 16 and my friend Rick eventually buying a bottle of Tequila (I don’t even want to know what SoBe prices were on that), I honestly believe that vodka was the only thing being poured at this place. 

Always the adventurous type, I thought I would try a few.

As a mixer, it seemed to work well in the three local cocktails I had.  No, I didn't drink a Cosmo…..and really the local drink names didn’t stick with me.  Most were very fruity and all seemed to focus on the bartenders ability to use a shaker……vs the drink itself.

I did do an iced shot of Ciroc, and this is where it caught me a little off-guard.  The taste took me back to Katterbach Kaserne. 

Allow me to explain.

Way back in my Army days, we used to have things called “Alerts”.  These were exercises to test our readiness to deploy anywhere (although usually just to our border area) in the world.  It usually involved everyone being awoken at 3:00AM, grabbing all gear and weapons, heading to the motor pool and getting our vehicles deployed.

It was a huge pain in the ass, and intended to be a surprise to catch everyone of guard…..so naturally every knew of them in advance.

Anyway, a typical evening prior to Alerts would be spent at the Enlisted Club, where we would see who could drink the most and still perform the next morning.  The two most popular drinks were shots of tequila and POPOV Vodka.   Yes POPOV, the plastic bottle elixir of death.   A Vodka so horrible, that you can smell it seeping from your pours the next day (as any Soldier who has done an Alert or Friday PT).

Needless to say, the next mornings were rough……with a ghastly aftertaste left in your mouth, and THIS was the first memory invoked by Ciroc.

The taste was similar to a cross between gasoline and rubbing alcohol.  If I hadn’t seen the bartender pour it with my own eyes, I would have sworn he did a bait and switch.

The nose was rough and unfiltered, again taking me back to those days where you could smell people sweating booze during a PT Run.

Without strong overlying mixes to cover it up, this stuff was a train wreck.

Interestingly, I just found a quote from Sean “P-Diddy” Combs, the main spokesman for Ciroc…….

"If you're not drinking Ciroc vodka, then you're drinking pee pee."

Combs has a multiyear strategic partnership worth up to $100 million with Ciroc and receives a 50 percent share of profits, while I don’t get anything from them what-so-ever. 

I don’t know who’s opinion you trust, but if P-Diddy’s Opinion is what counts, I would rather drink THIS.

Friday, March 19, 2010

The Nightmare before St Pats


This is probably the best “Cover Video” that I have ever seen.


Thursday, March 18, 2010

An Irish Confession

An Irishman goes into the confessional box after years of being away from the Church.

There’s a fully equipped bar with Guinness on tap. On the other wall is a dazzling array of the finest cigars and chocolates.

Then the priest comes in. “Father, forgive me, for it’s been a very long time since I’ve been to confession, but I must first admit that the confessional box is much more inviting than it used to be.”

The priest replies: “Get out. You’re in my side.”

Friday, March 12, 2010

“Kabbalah” Vodka; With Christian Infants


Let’s see….a Vodka that is esoteric, crass and involves eating (drinking) Christian babies.  TommyG is selling his house right now and flying to Russia.

Seriously though, this is probably a hoax….but if not, what a riot.

Here is the link to Kabbalah Vodka and below are the pics from the site before they disappear.

To Funny





Smokes and Booze State of the Union


Smokes I’ve been meaning to do this for some time, because I am often asked “How is the blog doing?”.

This will be 115th Post, and boy have we covered a lot of ground.

From the very 1st Post, to Randy wondering where I find stuff,  I have tried to hit all kinds of things related to Smoking and Drinking.

Along the way have made friends in Music, Good Causes and at Breweries.  And don’t forget our blogging partners at MySideofthebar and Daysofbooze.

On January 29, 2010, I added Google Analytics to the blog to start tracking how we are doing.  Since that time, we have had 714 visits with 392 Unique Visitors from 36 Countries.



And out of all this…..who knew THIS would be my most popular post (Top 5 Search for Rumple Minze on Google).

We were making money with Google Adsense as a sponsor, but then they said activity was suspicious….because YOU the reader were clicking to many ads.  We’ve since dropped that.  We do however have a banner at the bottom of the page for Pints for Prostates…..check it out.

There is a now a Twitter Feed and all the pages are tagged so you can jump to your favorite subject matter (See the bottom of the page).  So we are incorporating new technologies.

We are coming up on 50 fulltime followers, and I would recommend that everyone refer a friend.  Maybe someday we can get to 100 and find a real sponsor :)

In the future, I plan on continuing.  Goat Night was such a success that Goat Night 2 is in the works, as well as Absinthe Night and a potential Cigar Tasting.

My buddy Steve is in a band (The Barons of Blues), and I would love to see him come and play at the Roots, Blues and BBQ Festival here in CoMO.  If he does, I might actually have to pony up and sponsor a party.  Break my heart. 

Of course, if you see something funny or interesting…..send it over, or better yet….write a review.   What’s the worst that can happen?  Your writing can’t suck worse than mine.

Overall, this has been a lot of fun…….so thanks for following. 

Now, where’s my drink…..hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

Meet Ryan Simonson, another S&B Hero

This is something I would expect to see over at Randy’s Blog (MySideoftheBar), but I couldn’t resist adding it here as well.

Meet Ryan Simonson, a patron of Jim's Sports Club Bar and Grill in Chisholm Minnesota.

While he was there, (it is alleged that ) Jason Musburger,  a former Chisholm police officer, came into the bar with a gun to confront his ex-wife. 

Shots were fired and Ryan did what any man in a bar would do……he threw one barstool and began hitting Jason with another.

"I basically kept hitting him until he wasn't moving anymore," he said.

The mayor of the city is calling him a hero, saying his quick actions saved other lives. 

So, I raise my glass to you Ryan……great job.  I hope they give a free round soon.


Thursday, March 11, 2010

Cigarette Magic

Blue Moon’s Rising Moon….worse than Twilight


My town is a small town, and sometimes beer pickings at the local can be slim at best.  So when you see something new, you want to pick it up and try it right away, but the results might not be as good as advertised.

Today I stumbled across a Blue Moon Seasonal….Rising Moon.

Advertised as a Wheat Ale brewed with Kieffer lime leaves and lime peel, I thought it might have an interesting zest to it that might be a good change of pace.

Color – Heavy Amber hue with a slight (but thick) head 

Nose - Heavy Malt with no trace of Lime.

Taste- Bland, with slight malts and overall disappointing taste.

Finish – Only a hint of lime, slight evergreen aftertaste.  If that sounds like bathroom cleaner, it’s actually what it reminded me of.

What a mess.  I was expecting something along the lime flavors that other beers are putting on the market, but this had almost none.  When your aftertaste is compared to bathroom cleaner, you know you are in trouble, and I don’t think I would serve this beer to any of my friends.  The only way I would drink more is if it was brought to our house for a party, left and was the only thing remaining to drink.

Definite downcheck, and I would rate this beer .5 Stars out of 5 (yes…that bad). 

I could see this (and all the other Blue Moon variants) being the theme beer at a Twilight Party.  At that point, I would pull a Shia and smuggle my own booze in (towards the bottom of the page). 

Maybe he IS a werewolf.

Stonemason Wine…..not just for Lodge


Not to long ago, Debi picked me up a few bottles of Stonemason Shiraz 2004 from Ballast Stone Wineries in Australia.

While not much of a wine fan (I’ll drink it, but seldom go out of my way for it), this is one of the few wines that I have gone looking for and restocked up on…although to be fair, there is some  nostalgia with the Plumb -line on the bottle and the name Stonemason. 

The wine itself is fairly dry with great acidics that would pair well with Red Meats and pastas (with red sauces). 

Color – Very Nice medium and deep purple.

Nose – Fruity (with hints of Plum) with a slight flower undertones.

Taste – Bold, with a combination of red fruit, berry and plumb. 

Finish – Dry, slight acids and vanilla with an excellent aftertaste on palette.

As a relatively cheap wines (approx $15), the Stonemason range (not just the Shiraz) would make a great additions to your cellar, especially when you have those special Masonic Dinners. 

I would give it 3.5 Stars out of 5.

Stonemason Shiraz is currently available locally at Tinderbox Vino100 in Columbia MO and through various online outlets.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Booze in the News

A few stories in the news this week that I thought I would touch on real quick.

What is going on in Pennsylvania? Maybe Chris C. can shed some light on this, but I really don’t get it.

First we have Troopers raid popular bars for unlicensed beers, where Excise Police raid a series of Pubs (Owned by the same people) and confiscate $7200 worth of stock.  Beer that had been legally purchased from licensed Pennsylvania distributors and had paid all the necessary taxes.  What was the crime?  The brewers and/or importers failed to register the proper names of the brews with the State and pay a $75 fee.  I’ll let you read the rest of the story yourself, but needless to say…I would be up in arms over the lack of respect for property rights (the beer will probably go off by the time this is settled) and failure to face their accuser.  Thanks for submitting Rex.

In the next story, we have Distributors responding to a proposal to allow grocery and convenience stores to sell beer in in PA.  The use fear tactics such as loss of jobs, going out of business, more underage drinking and finally more problem drinking because beer will be more readily available.  Seriously, WTF.  Other states have allowed this to happen, and we are not drunken underage slobs who are on welfare (well….not ALL).  This is just another case of politicians trying to maintain their stranglehold. 

Again, what is up with PA?

Also today, we have news that Glenmorangie launched a new website for their brand Ardbeg Rollercoaster.  I haven’t seen it here locally, and again the US Government tries to prevent us from buying liquor via the internet (particularly from other countries), so it might be some time before we get a review of this one.  What is particularly interesting on this one…..they increased sales by £500,000 in  a week.  This is huge for the Scotch market and a great marketing decision on behalf of Glenmorangie……vs this one by Thee Olives.

Finally, we have something a little different.  A man built a home from trash and a million beer bottles.  Vid below.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Hollywood Amateurs


I bet you never would have thought you would see the names Madonna and Shia Labeouf on my blog.

To be honest, neither did I (especially after Crystal Skull).

Yet, today we have some news stories from the Oscars that show how Amateur these two are at drinking.

First we have THIS story about Madonna.  Apparently she attended a swank pre-Oscar Party hosted by Elton John. 

Of course when she get’s there, she starts screaming because she cannot have a drink made with her favorite vodka, Belvedere.

Did I fail to mention that the party was sponsored by Grey Goose?

Holy crap.  If someone invited me to a party that  had a booze sponsor and was FREE…..the last thing I would do is cry because my favorite mixer wasn’t available.

imageI’m sure Belvedere is happy though about the publicity.  I’d wager that Madonna gets several cases free for this little tryst.  Hell, they might include her in the adds……she airbrushes well.


The next story pertains to our Hollywood Goldenboy Shia Labeouf.  We all know what a horrible actor he is (See Crystal Skull or the Transformers movies), but I never knew he was a boozer as well.

It seems that Oscar-nominated actress Carey Mulligan is dating Shia and had warned him about drinking at the Oscars, saying he needed to be on his best behavior.

Well, if it’s on my blog….you know where this goes.

I guess when you sneak a bottle of whisky into the event and drink alone in a corner, some people don’t see that as best behavior.  Myself, I call him an Amateur because he could have been livening it up, socializing and really making a name for himself….Hollywood needs another Dean Martin or WC Fields. 

Hopefully he learned a lesson from this, if you are at a party….nobody likes a Debi Downer.  Who knows, at the rate Hollywood is going, he could have gotten drunk, destroyed the bar and then been cast as a young Tony Stark in Ironman 6. 

He started off well with an earlier interview, where he said

“I had to give up scotch, because it turns me into a werewolf - and cigarettes too.”

Now dude, if you are going to make claims you are a werewolf….you gotta back that up, not sit alone and drink in a corner.


Monday, March 8, 2010

Bonus….Free SWAG

If you’ve been drinking awhile, you are aware that most whiskey distilleries and beer breweries tend to give away some great SWAG (freebies).

The most famous is probably Maker’s Mark.  If you are not a member of Maker’s Mark Ambassador Club, then you have no idea what you are missing.  They will send you some of the coolest/funniest stuff and it seems to never stop.  Well worth your while.

Tonight I had a pleasant surprise when there was  a box on the imageporch.  Now, if you know my wife…..you can probably assume that it was for her, so to see my name on it….I was a little puzzled. 

Opening the box was like Christmas…..inside was an awesome Whiskey Pitcher from Knappogue Irish Whiskey Distilleries.

I will go on record that I stumbled on Knappogue a few weeks ago….and that I have not tried the whiskey, but it is on my order list.

Knappogue has a club called the “Round Table” and I would recommend it to anyone…..especially after getting such quick swag.

Samuel Adams Irish Red

It’s that time of year again.  When waves of Americans start thinking about which pub they will pour themselves into for the drinking of obligatory “Green Beer” and celebrate St Patrick’s Day.

An interesting aside, Green Beer didn’t start with St. Pat’s, but instead with “Green Beer Day” in 1952 at Miami University in Oxford Ohio.

Anyway, Green Beer aside, this is the month that several “Irish Red” styles of beer are consumed……probably the most popular being Killian’s Irish Red. 

To start this month, I thought I would go a different route and check out Samuel Adam’s Irish Red instead.

First, a Beer Lesson:

Irish red ale, red ale, or Irish ale are beers that gain its slightly reddish color from the use of a small amount of roasted barley.  The term red ale or red beer is used by brewers in countries other than Ireland; however, the name Irish Red is typically used when roasted material is used.

In America the name can describe a darker amber ale, and some breweries may produce a "red" beer that is a lager with caramel coloring.

Now…on to the beer.

Sam Adam’s Irish Red for me was a pleasant change from Killian’s, for with just the general alcohol content.  Killian’s runs at approx 4.9%ABV, whereas Sam Adam’s Irish Red is a hearty 5.5%ABV. 

The Color is a deep red, almost ruby color, with a light head and great caramel aromas.

The initial taste caught me a little off guard, being maltier than I expected, with hardly any hops to it.  Some sweetness added to the complex flavors of roasted malt and toffee, and there was a solid dry finish at the end.

Overall, the beer was very full bodied and tasty….and I would almost say I prefer it to the frontrunner (at least in mass production) in this category. 

Even though it is a member of their “Brew master's Collection”, I am curious if it is also somewhat seasonal….as this is the first time I have seen it available in over a year.  If it were available more locally, I would definitely add this to the rotation here at the house….and I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a good “Red” this Irish season.

Got a hangover? Don’t try this

Last night, I caught about 40 minutes of El Dorado on TV.

I love this movie for so many reasons.

First, it has John Wayne.  That in it’s own right is enough to cause me to watch it 7 days a week.  However, in this one….his acting is pretty good.

It was the first movie my family owned on BETAMAX (remember those?).  My brother brought home a Beta VCR from Korea, and the first movie we watched was El Dorado (we also had MASH, Beastmaster and Caddyshack in that first run of movies).  So there is a bit of nostalgia.

Last, but not least…….Johnny Diamond’s Sober-up Elixir.

For those of you unfamiliar with the movie, Robert Mitchum (Sherriff JP) is a drunk.  Not just your average drunk….but a falling down, full on DTs Drunk.  But he’s also a good guy and friend to John Wayne (Cole Thorton).  So, when JW shows up…..he decides he needs a quick pick-me-up for his buddy.

Enter James Caan (Mississippi).  I won’t go into to much of his back-story…..for those of you who have seen the movie, you know…and for those who haven’t…..enjoy.   But I will go into the recipe that his mentor Johnny Diamond taught him:

MISSISSIPPI- Johnny Diamond had a recipe. Let’s see. Cayenne pepper, mustard <the hot kind>, ipecac, asafoetida, and oil of cloves… or was it? No, it was croton oil.
BULL- Croton oil?! I’ll be a suck-egg mule. You know what that mixture will do to a feller?
MISSISSIPPI: Guaranteed kill or cure.

The last ingredient added was gunpowder.

This made me wonder, what were those ingredients and how did they all play into sobering up JP?  Of course, this could just be Hollywood (we all know how they make things up), but I thought better of John Wayne wanting to be accurate. 

So, let’s analyze the ingredients:

  • Cayenne Pepper- A hot spice of the Nightshade Family
  • Mustard- it facilitates digestion by promoting the secretion of gastric juices if used in small quantities as a condiment.  Can be used as an Emetic (vomiting agent)
  • Ipecac – Made from dried rhizome and the roots of the ipecacuanha plant.  Substance used to induce vomiting and used in poison treatment.
  • Asafoetida- Native to Persia, reduces the growth of microflora in the gut, reducing flatulence.
  • Croton Oil- Oil from India and Laya Archipelago.  Small Doses taken internally cause Diarrhea.
  • Gun Powder – The hardest to figure out.  My guess is it being used as another Emetic, however…there is a history of Gunpowder being used in medicine, in some cases for sterilization. 

So, in retrospect…..maybe Ol’ Johnny Diamond was on to something. 

I can’t imagine a situation where I would want to mix all those ingredients together and drink it.  In fact, it even sounds worse than the Corned Beef and Cabbage Tom Collins drink Randy posted on FB.

The whole thing SEEMS sound…..and I guess if you are in a pinch, you would do almost anything….just don’t give it to me ;)

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Possible Free Cigar Tasting

Cigar Obsession is giving away cigars.  Not just any Cigars, but Reyes Family Cigars…a brand I happen to like.

Anyway, they are giving them away to a whoever can answer this question the best…..Why you deserve a free box of cigars. 

I was actually first to post, and think I have a good reason….so, my next step is to get as many comments associated to my response.

This is where you can help.  Go HERE and put in some positive remarks.  Most of you I have had a drink or smoke with in the past, and I think you would realize what I say is true.

If I win, then I will host a cigar party at the house and pass the cigars around. 

If you comment, and cant make the party….I’ll send you one.



Friday, March 5, 2010

Is it a Vodka or a Sex Act?

*****Warning, this one could be considered sexually Graphic*****

I want to get into marketing.  It seems like the greatest job in the world, almost as good as NASA, where you just sit around and think things up……and believe me, I HAVE Ideas.  However, nothing as good as the Einsteins at 3-Olives.

Thee Olives Vodka is an ENGLISH (I know, I struggle with that as well) Vodka that began production in 1989. Since then, they have expanded into over 17 flavored Vodkas, of which…..I have tried none.

This is going to change with their newest flavor…..RANGTANG.

RANGTANG is a “Delicious blend of outrageously juicy oranges and tangerines”.  I could see it making really good screwdrivers…..especially since the marketing team didn’t do a Google Search to see if the name had any other connotations.

You see, Rangtang has another meaning.  I point you over to Urban Dictionary to read it yourself, so please consider yourself warned…….HERE

Now, you see why Screwdrivers are even funnier.

But it doesn’t stop there……not only did the Marketing staff come up with a doozie name, but their advertising campaign rocks as well…..

When you go the the Thee Olives Vodka website, you are greeted by a woman with bulging eyes and a ball-gag in her mouth…….saying “Open Wide”.  The screen fades to then ask you “What’s your RANGTANG O-FACE?”. 

I can’t make this up.  It’s awesome. 

Click the screencaps below to enlarge.




Given all these innuendos, I find it hard to believe that those Marketing guys are not just laughing their asses off right now at an inside joke.  I know I would be.  I also know that the first time I see this stuff, I am picking up a bottle and reviewing…….the name is to great.

Man, I can’t wait until someone makes some DVDA Gin.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Meet Lorna Gobey - A True S&B Hero


Meet Lorna, who recently turned 100.  While this isn’t unusual, lots of people live to 100 nowadays, what she attributes it to is definitely Smokes and Booze material.

Lorna smokes 20 Sterling Superkings Blue cigarettes a day, and has gone through over half-a-million cigarettes since her first one in 1940….the first year of the Blitz of the Battle of Britain.

She attributes her longevity to her fun-loving lifestyle and said her family ''wouldn't dare'' tell her to stop smoking. 

'People try and tell you it's bad for you but my family wouldn't dare ask me to stop. If they did, I'd put them across my lap and give them a slapped bum.

'I like my smokes, a drop of whiskey and Guinness and I still love to play skittles (Bingo). Perhaps it's part of the reason I have lived for so long. I never thought I'd make it to 100, but I have. I'm quite amazed really.''

Her son Bob Fisher, 66, said: ''She smokes faster than the rest of us and still loves a drink. She loves bingo, playing a tune on the mouth organ and riding around town in cars.''

Her favorite drink is a shot of whiskey with a Guinness chaser.  Talk about my kind of woman.  I only can hope that I am at that level when I hit 100.

Happy Birthday Lorna……and may you have many many many more.


Article HERE

Cigar Obsession

I saw this site on FB when Randy became a fan of their group.

The site itself is very professionally laid out and has some pretty interesting items for Cigar connoisseurs.

Video reviews of various products add a personal touch, and the information given is really insightful. 

The “Cigar Art” is well shot and attractive (if you are into that thing). 

My favorite entries are the “Daily Deals”.  Here, they research all cigar websites and post the sales they are having.  If you are smoking on a budget, this alone makes it worth your while to visit the site.

Overall, while not on the level of Cigar Aficionado, Cigar Obsession is definitely a good site and I would recommend it to all you smokers out there.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Funky Cold Medina recipe


After watching the video of The Frank & Walters (an Irish New Wave Band) doing a cover of Tone Loc’s Funky Cold Medina…..I had to know, what the hell is that drink anyway.

Well, wonder no more.

Funky Cold Medina

1 oz Absolut® vodka
1 oz Southern Comfort® peach liqueur
1 oz Blue Curacao liqueur
top with cranberry juice

Pour over ice and top off with cranberry juice.

Below is the video, Randy….don’t bother, you won’t get it ;)



100th Post….I feel Demotivated

Wow….here I am at my 100th Post. 

I personally think this shows 1000% more commitment than what Debi would have given me credit for.

So, to commemorate this auspicious event, I was looking for motivational posters.  We all know them, those posters that employers put up in hallways and cubicles that are intended to make us all enjoy our job.  Integrity.  Teamwork.  Perseverance. 

Well, if Smokes and Booze were a company, these are the ones you would find on our walls……the last one still gives me creeps.

Thanks for reading and now I am looking forward to the 200th Post.









Monday, March 1, 2010

The Greatest Baseball player EVER

With the first spring game two days away, I thought I would review one of the greatest baseball players ever…Babe Ruth.


I don’t want to go to far into his accomplishments here, as his numbers speak for themselves.  The first record he established, and the one he later said he was most proud of, is the 29 2/3 consecutive scoreless World Series innings in 1916, established while he was still a Boston Red Sox pitcher. Then he hit a record 29 home runs in 1919. Then 54 in 1920, then 59 in 1921, then 60 in 1927. In his third full year as a hitter--1921--he had already established a home-run record when he hit his 137th. When his slugging percentage reached .847 in 1920, that too was a record. But his most miraculous and rarely heard achievement is that during two seasons--in 1920 and 1927--Ruth hit more home runs than any entire team in the American League. No one--in any time, in any place or in any sport--has stood that far above his peers.

Instead, to be a little different, I want to point out what a cigar fan he was.  Of course, we could go into the drinking and womanizing….those are all common knowledge (and equally the stuff of legend), but not much is written about how much he smoked.

First, we start off with this great quote from the Bambino:

I learned early to drink beer, wine and whiskey. And I think I was about 5 when I first chewed tobacco.

When I first read that, I actually laughed out loud.  Was it part of the “Legend” or based in fact.

Considering his parents, Kate and George Sr., lived above the saloon they owned and operated on Camden Street, the Babe definitely had the exposure to smoking and drinking at an early age.

imageWhen he was sent to St. Mary's Industrial School to learn a vocation, the two he was taught were to make shirts (yawn) and roll cigars (YEAH). 

The picture at the left is actually a 1919 shot of Ruth doing just that, rolling cigars.

I think it easy to see this is where is love for the smell of tobacco started, and it even continued later in life when he he had put some of his money into a small local cigar factory that manufactured a Babe Ruth nickel number with his picture on every wrapper. "I smoked them until I was blue in the face," he once complained. Still, one of the reasons he was reluctant to leave Boston was because of those cigars. But his real taste was for larger cigars.  image

"Twice he went to Cuba to bring back Havanas," notes Baseball Hall of Fame researcher Bill Jenkinson. Countless pictures show Ruth smoking in black tie, smoking in his car, even smoking while hitting a ball. The cigars could have different shapes and sizes, but the player who could swing a 54-ounce bat (easily the biggest in the major leagues) also preferred the biggest cigars.

He also smoked pipes, cigarettes occasionally, and used enough snuff for any other two players. "He had the constant need to placate his mouth with food, drink, a cigar, chewing gum, anything," writes Robert Creamer.

"Ruth was Rabelais," says Roger Kahn, smiling. "Somebody who wanted to drink up all the ale in New York and not let a cocktail waitress pass by untouched. He was a huge, excessive, barely believable fellow. That's the first thing. And then there were the home runs. Not just the numbers of them, but the distance. When he was with the Red Sox he hit one in spring training in an exhibition game at the Tampa fairgrounds. He hit it out of the racetrack, into a farmer's field, and it stopped in a furrow. Several New York writers got a surveyor's glass and said it had traveled 630 feet. While that distance taxes credulity, writer Bill McGeehan said he didn't know how far it traveled, but when it came down it was covered in ice."

image It was not uncommon to see Ruth taking batting practice with a cigar clenched in his teeth, or signing autographs with a stub jutting from between his fingers.

He smoked first thing in the morning, throughout the day, and while carousing at night.

Stories of  his smoking abound, but one randy tale is especially characteristic. One night on the road, Ruth smuggled a woman into the room.  His teammate Ernie Shore tried to sleep, but the moans, groans and squeaking springs were impossible to ignore. Finally, with the sun nearly up, Shore dozed off. When he awoke, he recalls that Ruth was sleeping peacefully and the woman was gone. Shore noticed four or five cigar butts next to the bed. When he inquired later, the Babe smiled, saying, "oh, that! I like a cigar every time I'm finished."

One of my favorite pieces of memorabilia I have stumbled upon (and what prompted me to write this) was this:


Ruth began to decline in 1946 after it was discovered that he had a malignant growth in the left side of his neck. Most of the cancerous growth was removed, but some remained. It affected the left side of his head and his larynx. He would make several more appearances at Yankee Stadium, his voice pained and hoarse. He died on August 16, 1948.

In this day and age of performance enhancing drugs, one has to wonder how good could the Babe have been if he would have focused on his health and stayed away from smokes, booze and women?  It is without a doubt that he would have been great……but in my mind, he wouldn’t be Legend.


Shame on you Toyota

You must live under a rock to not know about the recent manufacturing defects with Toyota and the current recall.

In fact, I wonder how bad it REALLY is….as I am reminded of the scene with Ed Norton in Fight Club….

Anyway, Toyota is currently running a contest to Sponsafy a Toyota NASCAR.  What exactly does Sponsafy mean?  Well it is one of those made up words that basically means design the sponsor logos and place them on a car.

Kinda cool, but not really something I would pursue.  However, Rick over at Pints for Prostates did a very fine entry, one that I thought was tasteful and a potential winner (especially after seeing some of the drek in the gallery).


The design is simple, yet packs a message.  I think he did a great job.

However, the suits at Toyota had different opinions- (from Rick’s Blog)

Amazingly, Toyota Racing has rejected the design saying it "Contains offensive or inappropriate content." Really? What is offensive about a car design that encourages men to pay attention to their health? Using the universal language of beer to reach men with an important health message certainly cannot be inappropriate for a sport that was once sponsored by a tobacco company and has had cars sponsored by beer, spirits and wine brands for decades. Makes you wonder if Toyota has something against men's health?

"Contains offensive or inappropriate content." ?!?!?!?

You gotta be kidding me.  I have seen far worse at NASCAR events, and I dread the day I have to explain Enzyte to James.  The fact that it has a beer on the hood should be of no consequence, especially given NASCARS history (former moonshine runners) and Anheuser Busch being such a major sponsor of the sport sets the precedent that beer advertising is ok.

Of course, if this were a pink car and was promoting Breast Cancer awareness….it would be fine (need to get that female viewership up).

This is again another bad PR move for Toyota. 

Please join me in emailing Kym Strong (kym_strong@toyota.com) of Toyota Motorsports and Greg Thome (greg_thome@toyota.com) of Toyota Corporate Communications, to let them know know how stupid this decision is.  Use the subject line "Race the Pints for Prostates Car”.

Bizarre Video

I just don’t get this one. 

I’m a fan of old school wave music….what can I say, I’m a child of the 80’s, although this song barely squeaks into the decade.

I remember this song in Jr High, and I thought it was funny…..I never got the metaphor (until later in life) and of course I will always think of the skit in Jackass the Movie…..where they run around Japan dressed as a Panda.

Now there is a new version out……and Like I said, I don’t understand it.

Of course, there isn’t much that ties this to Smokes and Booze…other than this line :

No sex, no drugs, no wine, no women
No fun, no sin, no you, no wonder it's dark

But hey, it has Kirsten Durst in Japan, with blue hair, a magic wand and dressed like a school girl. Also, this is my blog….and I will put up anything I want :P

Check out the video and comment below, although be warned…there is a little anime nudity thrown in for fun.  When did you first hear it (Scott B…..I’m looking at you)?  What do you think it means?  Am I going to hell for thinking KD is hot?

Inquiring minds want to know.

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