Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Stupid Product of the Day–Beer Hour

Today we have one of the stupidest products on the net and it’s called Beer Hour, beer server created by the Takara Tomy.

After you attach the device to a can of beer, one can achieve the “perfect balance of beer and head when pouring into a glass.”

Available at Amazon.co.jp for 2,800 yen, one only has to ask….why?  Why would you want to drink more foam?  As a foam reducer, I guess it is ok, but to add more?  How about learn to pour an F’n beer?


Goodbye Food Pyramid

Today it was announced that the Obama Administration getting ready to ditch the Food Pyramid

SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - The Obama Administration is getting ready to ditch the Food Pyramid, a symbol of healthy eating for the last two decades.

In its place, officials are "dishing up" a simple, plate-shaped symbol, sliced into wedges for basic food groups and half-filled with fruits and vegetables.

Beside the plate is a smaller circle for dairy, suggesting a glass of low-fat milk or perhaps a yogurt cup.

The revised pyramid is part of the administration's crusade against obesity, led by first lady Michelle Obama.

This caused Mike and I to wax nostalgically about the previous Food Pyramid (adopted by the USDA in 1992) and what we thought was far superior “Four Food Groups”- which we grew up with.

Of course, this lead to some research and I have learned some very interesting facts about the USDA and their attempts to make recommendations on the food we eat-

  • In 1916, the USDA published its first food guide, Food for Young Children.
  • In 1943 the "basic seven" guideline that President Franklin Roosevelt introduced was deemed obsolete because of its complexity and was replaced by the much simpler "basic four". This consists of milk, meats, breads, and fruits & vegetables.
  • In the 1970s, there was a fifth group added, fats, sugars, and alcohol. People were advised to only have this on a restricted basis though.

So the “Basic Four” has been around a lot longer than I originally imagined (in effect fro 50 years) and at one point…..BOOZE was added as the 5th Food Group.  How did I miss THAT in School?

Personally, I am of the mind….if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it…but bureaucracy needs to reinvent itself every now and then to re-justify it’s existence. 

The “Four/Five Basics” was perfect, but to be fair….the Food Pyramid was OK, although a little completed.  Who knows what the USDA will put out now, they should have just left well enough alone and focused the money elsewhere.

And for those who are wondering – This is how my Food Pyramid turned out.


Beer Drinking Super Heroes?


I’m just going on record right now……if I EVER EVER EVER dress up like this at a sporting event, everyone I know has my permission to kick the crap out of me.

Just saying

Today is World No Tobacco Day

That’s right boys and girls, today (May 31) is “World No Tobacco Day” as decreed by the UN’s World Health Organization (WHO).

Through the ratified 1993 treaty Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, the UN has tried to impose various regulations such as

  • Price and tax measures to reduce the demand for tobacco
  • Non-price measures to reduce the demand for tobacco, namely:
    • Protection from exposure to tobacco smoke;
    • Regulation of the contents of tobacco products;
    • Regulation of tobacco product disclosures;
    • Packaging and labeling of tobacco products;
    • Education, communication, training and public awareness;
    • Tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship; and,
    • Demand reduction measures concerning tobacco dependence and cessation.
  • The core supply reduction provisions in the WHO FCTC are contained in articles 15-17:
    • Illicit trade in tobacco products;
    • Sales to and by minors; and,
    • Provision of support for economically viable alternative activities.

While I am sure we can all agree that selling/marketing to minors is bad, is it really up to the UN to enforce this?  Do we need a commission within the UN (and funded in part by the US) to regulate this?  Do we need the UN mandating higher taxes on something?  Remember, this tax is on top of our Federal and State taxes on tobacco. 

Given the corruption within the WHO (HERE and HERE for starters), I’m not sure I believe their statistics.  In fact, here is a Reuters Article that “Claims”-

  • Smoking could kill 8 million a year by 2030
  • Tobacco could cause up to a billion deaths in the 21st century, a dramatic rise from the 100 million deaths it caused in the previous century
  • Tobacco kills up to half its users
  • "Countries that mandate large graphic pack warnings are not only fulfilling their legal obligations, they are taking a big step forward toward better informing smokers of the deadly harms of tobacco,"
  • Smokers see images on tobacco packs 15 times a day

Really, HALF of the users?  This strikes me as similar fantasy stats as used by MADD.  I’m sorry, but you can make stats say whatever you want, especially when you pull them from your ass.

Case in point – their comment on large graphic pack warnings.  The US has been labeling cigarette packs since 1964.    While the amount of tobacco use has gone down, there is no evidence that it is due to package labeling.  I would call it instead, just overall education….in fact, I would estimate that at least once a year (if not more) we had a week dedicated to it in health class in school.  I can only imagine how much we focus on this today with the kids….to bad we don’t concentrate on other things (reading and math) and allow them to make their own choices (under the advice of parents) as they grow up.

In the end, instead of concentrating almost exclusively in the fight against malaria, which kills one child per minute, as well as AIDS and tuberculosis – diseases that are communicable and can turn into a pandemic, the WHO is focusing on something that is preventable and should be addressed by the individual countries.  If they truly want to prevent this….then they should ban it. 

We know how well that worked with alcohol.

Monday, May 30, 2011

On Memorial Day

On a somber note for Memorial Day, please take a minute to visit the link below as an act of remembrance for our fallen brothers and sisters in Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom

In Honor of the Fallen - http://www.militarytimes.com/valor/

Miller High Life–The Program Continues

After a brief hiatus here at Smokes and Booze (anyone that works with me knows why), we are back in the saddle – and What a great reason than to promote a product on Memorial Day.

Memorial Day is a day to remember Veterans who have given the ultimate sacrifice, yet we should never forget the men and women who serve our country – Period.

We have highlighted a few People and Products in the past who do just that……well, now we have a return visit from someone.

Last year, Miller High Life had a promotion that donated money to veterans.  (You can read my blog post HERE)

Well, they have stepped up again and restarted it again….and even have a new promotional video about it.

While Miller is not my favorite tasting beer, it does hold a nostalgia factor with me (being my Father’s Beer) AND now this. 

Last year I donated 275+ caps to the “Give a Veteran a Piece of the Highlife” program – My goal is to double it. 

If you live in CoMO – contact me at ed@smokesandbooze.com and we can combine our caps – My Goal is 1000.  I know that is only $100, but it is the least we can do to support such a great showing.

Break out the BBQ and crack open a Miller – I will be.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

This Day in History - May 28 1998–RIP Phil

Talented comedian Phil Hartman dies at the hand of his crazy wife Brynne, who then commits suicide after the police arrive. Hartman's corpse is found in bed with multiple gunshot wounds to the head. SNL televises a very bad retrospective of his work several weeks later.

I loved him in New Radio, and who can forget him on the Simpsons. 

RIP Phil


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Beer Cocktails?

Sadly, I have had A “Broadway” or Colaweizen in Germany.


This Day in History 25 May 1977–Star Wars

It should be no surprise to anyone that knows me, that I am a Star Wars fan.  As an almost 8 year old when it came out, the movie completely captured my young imagination.  It inspired me towards technology and it really made me who I am today.

From it, I learned if you need help….go into a bar, that things sometimes smell worse on the inside and finally – Never kiss a girl if you think there is even a SMALL chance she is your sister.

As we have done in the past (HERE HERE and HERE) here are some more Star Wars Smokes and Booze related items.  Enjoy.


First, we have the Empire’s Finest – Who knew Smirnoff and Amstel light were the drinks of choice?


Since we are dinking Vodka, how about some cookies to go with it?cookies_and_vodka

Finally, a few “Behind the Scenes” pics for you to enjoy-


Friday, May 20, 2011

Meet the beer that helps veterans

As you may know, I am an Army Veteran.  Not only am I, but so are/were several members of my family and a vast majority of my friends.  My son is named after three of them.

Veterans hold a special place in my heart, and I will back 100% any company that supports them.

Enter 50 Back.  A company that gives 50% of all profits to Military Charities.   In the immortal words of Drill Sgt Jeffrey “Hard Rock” Wilson – Out F###ING STANDING.

Sadly, it appears to be an East Coast beer (from Massachusetts, where I went to AIT) and doesn’t have market penetration in the Midwest yet….or else I would be reviewing it. 

That being said, I know there are a lot of you in this area….so get out and pick up a 6er or two.  Drink one on Memorial Day and think of veterans past and present.  Enjoy and remember the day…and while you are at it…help our brothers in the Army, Airforce, Navy and Marines.

Great Job 50 Back…..Keep up the great work.

Drink a beer, help a veteran

Who'd ever think you could do a good deed by drinking beer?

beer%20004-thumb-400x300-42056Paige Haley and Kimberly Rogers of Pepperell, who grew up in military families, created 50 Back American Lager for that very purpose. Every time they sell a beer, they give half of the profits to groups supporting veterans, active service members, and their families.

So far the women say they have donated more than $6,000 in cash to charity, plus $4,000 in beer donations for fund-raising events. The nonprofits they've supported include the USO, Homes for Our Troops, the Ahern Family Charitable Foundation, the Massachusetts Soldiers Legacy Fund, and America's VetDogs.

"Our priority is really just to say 'thank you' to our troops and veterans for their service," Rogers said. "When my father passed away, I wanted to do something in his honor to say 'thank you' for his life of service. [Haley] said, 'Well, why don't we do a beer.' I said, 'Hmm, beer, all right. That's an interesting thought.'"

The beer, which launched last Memorial Day and is nicknamed "The Brew of the Brave," is about to mark its first anniversary. Six-packs retail for $7.99, and the beer is available in 250 stores and restaurants in Massachusetts, mostly in the eastern and central parts of the state. The women are trying to expand distribution to the rest of New England, and they recently go 50 Back into the Harris Teeter supermarket chain in North Carolina.

How is the beer itself? Contract-brewed by Olde Saratoga Brewing Co. in New York, 50 Back is a decent pale lager. Golden straw in color, well carbonated, and 4.9 percent alcohol, it's similar to other pale lagers out there -- Moosehead, Michelob, and the like. It's a fine poolside beer, and certainly a step above the corn-fed drek churned out by the big corporations.

"We didn't want to start out with anything too exotic, bitter, hoppy, whatever," she said. "And yet we didn't want something so completely light that it didn't have any taste. We tried to hit in the middle -- trying to attract the broadest spectrum of beer drinkers that we could in the beginning. We get various comments -- that it's way too heavy, 'You should do a light,' to, 'This has no taste at all. Are you thinking of doing a porter, a stout?'" In fact, Rogers said, they may try an IPA or an Oktoberfest-style beer next.

So here's the thing: If you're going to pick up a case of basic beer for a backyard barbecue, you may as well bypass the Bud and give 50 Back a shot -- and do some good while you're feeling good.

I wish I had £25,000

Man, this is one of those things that I just wish I had money laying around for.

Titanic captain's cigar box sells for £25,000

A cigar box once owned by the captain of the Titanic has been sold for £25,000 at an auction in Liverpool.

The walnut humidor was discovered gathering dust on a bedroom cabinet in the Merseyside home of Hilary Mee.

It was spotted by auctioneer John Crane when he was invited to value a number of antiques.Cigar box

Ms Mee said she had no idea the item was connected to the ill-fated vessel, even though it had been lying around her home for 20 years.

Finest smokes

The box carries the distinctive emblem of the White Star Line shipping company and bears the initials of the master of the passenger liner, Edward John Smith, who was from Stoke-on-Trent.

At first Mr Crane could not work out what the initials stood for but he said a tingle went down his spine when he realised it belonged to the ship's captain.

Ms Mee said the box had been in her family for several generations. It is thought to have been given to her father by relatives of Edward John Smith's widow, Sarah.

The box is lined with camphor wood and was designed to hold 40 of the finest Havana cigars.

The RMS Titanic was built at the Harland and Wolff shipyard in Belfast and sank after hitting an iceberg in the North Atlantic on her maiden voyage from Southampton to New York in 1912.

Pirates President has Brain Fart

Do you ever wake up in the morning and say “I’m going to make a huge PR mistake”?  If you are Pittsburgh Pirates President Frank Coonelly you might.

You see, there is a bar (of course there is….why else would this story be on Smokes and Booze?) called The Stroll Inn, that came up with an outstanding promotional idea…every time the Pirates lose, they take $.05 off a pitcher of Yuengling.  This means that if the Pirates have a season like last year (105 loses) you will be drinking pitchers of beer for about $2.  Not only does this sound great, but their slogan is even better “PIRATES LOSE, YOU WIN”.

While we are sitting here and laughing, you can imagine what the Pirate front office was thinking.  You got it…..WE MUST MAKE THEM STOP.

Enter Angela Criscella, an account executive for the Pirates, who (after hearning of the promotion) circulated an Email that said said-

"An occasional joke and jab is expected here and there, but to create business by ripping on the home team is ridiculous and in my opinion distasteful."

She then suggested bar patrons to -

"take your business away from the Stroll Inn and to other local restaurants instead."

Really?  Chain letters are so 1990.  But then again, what do you expect from an organization who’s president then calls the owner, a Ms. Estelle Aversa, and scolds her.  No, I’m serious….her words-

Mrs. Aversa described Coonelly as ``very cold and not very nice.''

She said, ``He was scolding me. He was ignorant, not a very nice man.''

You can hear the interview HERE.

While Ms. Aversa has since pulled down the sign and stopped the promotion….in the end, this is the kind of publicity that she could never afford.  Since the incident business has doubled.  I hope they cash in on this fiasco and gain some new customers.  Personally, since the Pirates ended the skid last night against my Reds, I hope they start it up again and the beer is $1 at the end of the season.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Alcohol “Powered” Bike

First we had the Bourbon Powered Car, then the German made Beer Bike…..now we have a Alcohol Bike Video.


5 Plus things your bartender won’t tell you

I thought this article was a pretty good guideline, plus I put my own comments in GREEN.

Any bartenders out there want to give some insight or thoughts on these?  We would love to hear from you.


5 things your bartender won't tell you

1) The quickest way to get a drink at a crowded bar is cash

"You see cash, you go to that person first," said Ben Archer, a bartender at The Lime in South Tampa.

Archer says bartenders can process cash a lot faster than a credit card. That means more drinks poured, which means more tips.

Cash customers tend to be a little less frugal too, giving a dollar or two per drink instead of a flat 15-20% on a bill.

I’ve found that starting a tab and communicating with the bartender here is actually better.

2) Your best bet for a freebie is to be a regular...or the only one at the bar

Unfortunately for the weekend warrior, freebies can be tough to come by at a crowded bar or restaurant. But if you're keeping the bartender company during the slowest times of day (mid-afternoon) or week (Mon-Wed), you stand a good chance of a kickback or two.

Better yet, if he or she sees you around the bar often, you can expect better service and more freebies.

While this is true, is it really about freebies or would you rather have better service period?  I’m more inclined towards the later….ie, keep’m coming.  Of course, being a regular does help in getting consistent service as well, so I think this is sound advice.

3) It's OK to complain about the strength of your drink (once)

"It's OK to send your drink back," said Lindsey Hicks, a bartender at The Lodge restaurant in South Tampa. "I want every customer to be happy. If they send it back, I always put a little extra in there."

Hicks said its even less of a problem if the drink is too strong or a draft beer tastes funny. But both Hicks and Archer agree it becomes annoying when customers repeat the request a second time.

I 100% disagree with this one.  You should never ever complain about drink strength.  If it’s to weak, buy a different drink.  If it’s to strong, order a little mixer and cut it.  Buy you should NEVER send a drink back.   Usually the bartender is working with exact measures and he can’t guess your palette or tolerence.  There is still a dying breed that free pour, and more often than not…that is going to be a stronger drink.  Deal with it.

4) Bartenders will lie about their "favorite drinks"

"Probably 50 percent of the drinks I make, I don't like," said Hicks. "But I tell people, 'Oh, my gosh, this is perfect. I drink it every time I go out!' "

She adds that when customers are excited about a drink, they walk away happy, and if customers doesn't know what they want, Hicks said it's often easy to convince them to order whatever is easiest for the bartender.

5) Bartenders love when you buy them drinks

Bartenders love when you buy them drinks because they either get a free drink or a giant tip.

At some bars, the bartender won't ring up the drink you're paying for.

"Some bartenders will take a bottle and fill it with water," Hicks said. "(Customers) think you're taking a shot with them and you're not."

Which means the money you spent on that bartender bonus goes straight into his or her pocket.

Spot on.  If you buy the bartender a drink you are going to get one of three things – Either better service, better/stronger drinks or a freebie yourself.  Hell you might even get all three. 

More things your bartender won't tell you:

- He or she is married; customers (especially men) will tip better if they think they have a chance with the bartender.  Give up, you stand next to ZERO Chance.
- Most bars cut lemons and limes daily. But some only refresh olives or oranges when necessary. To me, not a major deal.
- Their biggest pet peeve is when you don't know what you want. Asking for suggestions is OK, but being indecisive eats up their time.  Mine too.  If you don’t know what you want when it comes your time to order….end of the line.

Quote of the day (Something a little different)

Today’s quote is taken from Steve Tyler’s new book – Does the Noise in My Head Bother You?”

"I kept my medicine cabinet on stage, in a fourteen-inch drum head, the bottom of which contained . . . one Dixie cup with a straw and blow in it and the other with Coca-Cola and Jack Daniels in it"

PBR and Americana

Sometimes the contents of the Library of Congress amazes me.  They have so much content that it’s hard to get your head around it all.

This time we have a picture from recently released Color Photos from the Depression.  You can go HERE to see others, but it is this one that I wanted to focus on.



Here you have Part of the South Water Street freight depot of the Illinois Central Railroad in Chicago, Illinois, May 1943…with a PBR Clock prominently displayed. 

I can imagine hundreds (if not thousands) of thirsty eyes looking up at that clock, waiting for the work day to be over so that they could go home (or to a local bar) and have a beer, forget about their troubles for awhile and relax. 

Its pictures like this, that make it easy to see why Pabst is such an icon in Americana.

While not my favorite nostalgia beer (I drink Miller for my Dad and Stag for fun), I am not ashamed to admit I drink PBR upon occasion.  I think it is a great snapshot into a simpler time, and quite a refreshing drink.

Sadly, Pabst has been in the news lately on a more negative note.

It appears that they are moving the company headquarters -

So much for blue collar. So much for Chicago, and so much for Milwaukee. Pabst Brewing Company recently announced that it's moving its headquarters to Los Angeles. The move has taken local officials and some branding experts by surprise. They wonder how the company will keep up its Midwestern image once it's based here in glitzy Southern California.

But the move is a return home of sorts, Pabst was at one point in its corporate history owned by the charitable foundation of a Los Angeles brewing mogul. That's before it was sold last year to a food industry mogul whose sons both live in L.A.

I tend to agree with the NPR (who’s “All Things Considered” is sponsored by PBR) report, wondering if this is a move to be hip and shed the Midwest/blue-collar ties to the past.  I know I used to think of it as “Grandpa’s Beer”, but as I have matured…it’s grown on me.  Instead of embracing that, it appears they want to go after the younger market….just check out their website

While I get that it is a tough market right now (especially with InBev trying to crush all competition), I think Pabst can do both…..embrace who they were, and still appeal to the younger generation. 

While not politically correct, imagine this as a  commercial

Intro – Black and White/Jumpy Home Video.  1950’s Father and Son fishing trip.  Father watches proudly as his coming of age son pulls in a huge bass.  Clasping him on the shoulder, Dad reaches down and pulls a PBR out of the cooler and offers it to him.  As he takes a drink, Dad puts his fishing hat on the boys head, his little boy has grown up.

Flash forward, an old man sits in a rocking chair on a porch napping and a crystal clear summer day.  An old fishing hat (the tie in that this is now the boy all grown up) rests over his eyes.  A US Flag flapping in the breeze. A car pulls up, and he pushes the hat back to see his son get out of the car – a young man in uniform, returning home from the war.  After many smiles and hugs, the father and son sit on the porch (overlooking the same lake?) and Dad says- “Wanna go fishing tomorrow” as he hands the young man a beer…a PBR.

With less than two minutes, you just traversed two generations, made old men nostalgic and also pulled in the military market. 

Embrace who you are, the ol’ Red White and Blue.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The Queen turns down pint of Guinness

Beer takes another hit from the Monarchy (the first being its banning at the royal wedding), now we have Her Royal Highness on a historic tour of Ireland….a tour that included the Guinness Brewery.

After getting a brief lesson on the “perfect pour” HRH was offered the pint, but turned and walked away.  To me, it was pretty obvious she could have cared less. 


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Joke of the Day–Married Life

A woman is sitting at home on the veranda with her husband as they enjoy a glass wine and she says, "I love you."
He asks, "Is that you or the wine talking?"
She replies, "It's me............. talking to the wine."


Thanks Shan Smile

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Quote of the Day

Why pay $100 on a therapy session when you can spend $25 on a cigar? Whatever it is will come back; so what, smoke another one.
Raul Julia


Cure for the common cold

I love old smoking and alcohol advertisements (HERE is an example).  They are a window back to a simpler time, where legal jargon was not added at the bottom and they made some pretty incredible claims.  However, some of those claims might not be as false as people today would lead you to believe.

Lately, I have had a bad cold (thanks to James) and so I finally broke down and “Bourboned” it to death.  I feel particularly vindicated in my self medication, as it appears that Duffy’s was advertising this same method years ago.

From “Guinness gives you strength” to “Spring Time is Tonic Time”, these old advertisements would actively push people to having a snort from time to time. 

Alcohol was so ingrained into our culture (at times due to it being the healthier alternative to water), that children were regularly given doses to a variety of ailments.  Was it a bad thing?  I don’t think so.  People turned out just fine….hell, I was given Hot Toddies when I was young…so I base my treatment on my own experiences and lessons learned growing up….where my grandfather took a shot every day for “Medicinal Purposes”.  Whisky really can be a healthy additive to you daily intake….and I highly suggest it.  And I don’t even play a Doctor on TV.



Duffy_s Pure Malt Whiskey -1914A

duffy's ad

Saturday, May 14, 2011

This Day in History–RIP Ol’ Blue Eyes

Frank-Sinatra-Cool-Hat-CigarMay 14 1998, International recording star and Academy Award winner Frank Sinatra dies of a heart attack shortly after the airing of the final Seinfeld episode.

Sinatra had an outstanding career -Academy Award winning actor (From Here to Eternity), a nomination for Best Actor (The Man with the Golden Arm). Winner of the the Presidential Medal of Freedom (by Ronald Reagan in 1985) and the Congressional Gold Medal in 1997. Sinatra was also the recipient of eleven Grammy Awards, including the Grammy Trustees Award, Grammy Legend Award and the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

As a member of the bratpack, his partying we legendary. 

Frank  drank expensive red wines, and mixed martinis for his friends on the set of "Ocean's Eleven." And, he never forgot a pal's favorite drink (according to Sinatra's old friend Ed McMahon). But his own drink was a simple, but exacting mix of ice, Jack Daniels Tennessee whiskey and water. "This is a gentleman's drink," is how he described it. "This is nice." He called it "The Black Ass of Jack Daniel," on occasion.

The Black Ass of Jack Daniel (Frank’s Way)

1. Use a leaded crystal glass, if possible. Sinatra was a fan of elegant glassware, and built a voluminous collection. He believed that good glassware brought out the best in any booze.

2. Drop four cubes---no more---into the glass. Sinatra would pick out any more cubes than four with a spoon, and admonish the bartender that he wanted to drink, not skate.

3. Pour two fingers of Jack Daniels over the ice---no more. His bodyguards would tell bartenders "Don't try to be his friend by mixing it heavy. He don't like it like that." Sinatra once described a drink too heavy in whiskey as "Sammy Davis in a glass."

4. Fill the remainder of the glass with a quality still water, like Poland Springs. Sinatra drank water only as a cocktail mixer, never for refreshment, or even as a back to a cocktail. "I'm thirsty, I'm not dirty," he would scowl.

5. Allow the drink to settle for two minutes. Sinatra would drink martinis right on pouring, but believed that allowing a mixed drink on the rocks allowed it to settle, and brought out its subtleties.

6.Drink your Black Ass of Jack Daniel Sinatra's way. He did not hold cocktails by the rim, and infrequently set them down. He would cup them in his hand, insulated by a cocktail napkin.


With such great quotes as

    • “Alcohol may be man's worst enemy, but the bible says love your enemy.”
    • “Basically, I'm for anything that gets you through the night - be it prayer, tranquilizers or a bottle of Jack Daniels.”
    • "You gotta love livin' baby, 'cause dyin's a pain in the ass."

it’s easy for him to be one of our favorites.

So beloved was he, that the night following his death, the lights on the Las Vegas Strip were dimmed for 10 minutes in his honor.

Frank, you were unique in each and every way.  Here’s to you…..You did it Your Way

Since it is Caturday….meet the worlds coolest cat.

Just don’t touch his smokes.

Hope everyone has a great weekend.

Friday, May 13, 2011

20K Bottles of Crystal Head Stolen

This is really sad news, and while I appreciate Mr. Aykroyd trying to put a positive spin on the situation, it still sucks.  Why?  Because it is hard enough to get CSV in CoMO as it is……loosing 21K bottles is going to have a huge impact. 

So, if you haven’t tried Crystal Head Vodka, then check out our REVIEW and then hustle to Grand Cru or Arena Liquors ASAP.


Dan Aykroyd's Vodka Stolen

Dan Aykroyd has been left counting the cost of a massive theft which saw over 21,000 bottles of his vodka brand stolen from a warehouse in California.

The Ghostbusters star is a founder of the Crystal Head Vodka company, which sells the spirit in extravagant bottles shaped like crystal skulls.

Aykroyd's firm was the victim of a heist this month (May11) when a large consignment of the vodka, worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, was taken from a storage facility.

The actor admits he is both "distressed and elated", by the theft, telling Tmz.com in a statement, "My partners and I are sorry to lose this much vodka to theft and do not condone criminal activity in any fashion, but we are happy that some consumers will be afforded the opportunity of tasting it at significantly lower than retail price. Chv can be purchased legally at bars, restaurants, and retail stores throughout North America."

A News Story from 1923 and a funny side note

I read a lot of strange stuff in the middle of the night.  I troll conspiracy sites, entertainment and news pages and even Rotten.com from time to time.  In particular, I read a lot of history, and sometimes the best way to see what was general temperature of a time period is to read the newspapers of the day.

Google (All Hail…we bow in your omnipotence!) has done a pretty good job of making these available, so I thought I would share one…and maybe pique your interests as well.

In THIS story, we learn of some of the internal strife during Prohibition, between the Attorney General and the Supreme Court.  At question is whether alcohol can be served on ships.  It is a great read and interesting glimpse into the past.

So, while that is a good (but not great) S&B Story, what I found particularly funny was the announcement at the bottom of the page 1 article.


Targeted audience maybe? 

Some of you might not get it….but it brought a smile to my face.

InBev at it again

Here we go again.  After a great weekend with Missouri Beer Festival, we see a story like this.  Why does InBev (remember them from HERE) want to HB 602?  While the story below alludes to the pest that Micro-breweries have become (with increased sales), I personally think the main reason InBev doesn’t want token beer sales after tours is “Word of Mouth”.

Imagine you go to “Tom’s Brewery” and do a tour.  You pay your fee, you have a great time and at the end, you buy a few 6packs (which are not available in stores).  You go home, invite you “Bud” drinking buddy over and he tries “Tom’s” (after much complaining that he is a “Bud Man”) and likes it.  You have now begun the conversion and enlightenment of someone who has been brainwashed by Super Bowl Commercials and MTV into thinking that Bud was the best beer on the market.  Next time he is at the grocery, he might pick up a 6-pack of Guinness, Tall Grass or Youngling, and thus….a revolution is born.

My challenge to everyone is to watch the movie “Beer Wars” (now for free on Hulu) and pick up a craft brew this weekend.


Anheuser-Busch InBev roars against craft breweries bill in Texas legislature

Because it is “only” about beer and not regularly taken too seriously, citizens sometimes deny themselves the exquisite pleasure of watching money and power manipulate politics in the state Legislature.
Take a little bill, HB 602 by Jessica Farrar, D-Houston, which passed unanimously in the House in late April. The bill would allow small craft breweries in Texas to sell token amounts of their beer in their breweries in the same way Texas wineries have for years been allowed to sell a bottle or two of wine to visitors after a tour.
What’s the difference, you might ask. Why would an emissary of the largest brewing company in the world take time out of an undoubtedly busy schedule to come before a state Senate committee, as reported today by the Houston Chronicle, to voice his objection to a few breweries selling in a year what would amount to a infinitesimal fraction of one day’s production?
Mark Bordas, a representative with Anheuser-Busch InBev in Austin, told the committee Tuesday that the bill discriminates against his company because it is tailored to breweries producing fewer than 75,000 barrels per year.
It would seem, as Bordas contended, that AB InBev should have just as much a right as the little guys to let a few six packs of Budweiser and Bud Light leave with tourists at their Texas plants.
But here is where it gets delicious. Small brewers were encouraged to add a brewery output stipulation to the bill by the Wholesale Beer Distributors of Texas. Ostensibly, as Keith Strama, an attorney for the suds lobby, told the committee, “The bill was designed to promote local breweries as they gain market share.”
More importantly to the lobby, however, the stipulation would deny large breweries sales of any of their product directly to customers. Nothing since the repeal of Prohibition in 1933 has been more dear to the wholesalers than their nearly absolute control of the flow of alcohol through them from producer to retailer.
Since that time, no one has benefited more in this so-called three-tier system established by Texas law in 1935 than the major breweries. For generations distributors catered to their biggest and best customers as small regional breweries went out of business and the giants consolidated.
The Belgian conglomerate InBev’s purchase of the nation’s biggest brewer, Anheuser Busch, in 2008 gave the new company nearly a 20 percent share of the world’s beer sales. Last year, AB InBev produced 339,945,117 31-gallon barrels of beer worldwide. Anheuser Busch’s share of that production, 100,939,289 barrels, represented almost half of all the beer sold in America.
By comparison, St. Arnold Brewing Co. in Houston, the state’s leading small producer, turned out 31,445 barrels of beer.
Why, then, you might reasonably query, would the global leader in brewing squander time fighting over legislative chump change? The answer isn’t in St. Arnold’s volume, but in its 22 percent increase in production in 2010 from the year before.
Once an annoyance to the big brewers and wholesalers, craft brewing is now a legitimate force in the market. From a low mark of 80 breweries in 1983 there were 1,753 in America in 2010.
For the past 25 years, craft brewing has been the only segment of the market to grow, while the sales and production among the giants has slowly and steadily declined. Craft brewing grew to nearly 10 million barrels in 2010, still a fraction of Anheuser Busch’s production alone but an 11 percent increase from a 2009 that had seen growth of more than 7 percent from the year before.
In 2010, AB InBev’s sales were down 2.1 percent in the U.S., and the production volumes were down 13.1 percent in Russia, 4.9 percent in western Europe and 2.4 percent in China.
Never one to take competition of any kind lightly, Anheuser Busch was not likely to sit still while the Texas Legislature gave even a tiny advantage like limited on-site beer sales to someone else.
Bordas told the committee AB InBev had at one time supported HB 602 but was unaware the bill had been amended to keep companies of its size out.
His statement suggests that the Wholesale Beer Distributors helped the craft brewers amend the bill without telling the company with which they worked to defeat nearly identical bills in past sessions.
You are free to take AB InBev and the distributors at their words. But as we speculated at the time: “The unanimous vote approvingHB 602 by Rep. Jessica Farrar, D-Houston, either shows how far the House has come on the issue or that the Wholesale Beer Distributors of Texas are saving their considerable wealth and lobbying expertise for the Senate.”

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Who knew Kermit drinks rum?

I don’t know what bit was funnier, Johnny Depp (totally wasted) or Kirstie Alley (wondering if she was going to eat him).

Break out the RUM!

Buy Bama Vodka…its the right thing to do

This is a great story.  Note, it doesn’t say a portion of the proceeds, it says ALL PROFITS. 

Great Job to the people at Bama Vodka…and a great way to give back to the community.

Bama Vodka donates profits for tornado relief in Alabama

US-based Bama Vodka, a premium spirits company, has plans to donate all its profits from May & June to the victims of storms that raged through Alabama on 27th April this year.

According to the spirits company, a minimum of $1.00 for each bottle of Bama Vodka sold in Tennessee, Mississippi and Alabama will be donated to local tornado relief efforts.

Bama Vodka said it expresses deepest sympathies and prayers to everyone who has been impacted by this storm and Bama Vodka is pleased to be able to assist in the recovery efforts.

Ultra-Premium BAMA Vodka is made from six-distillations of the finest grains, grown in America's heartland.

The products smoothness and taste comes from filtration with the best limestone quarried exclusively from the great state of Alabama.

Beer and Bikes…..only the Germans could think of this

Ok, when will we get this in Columbia MO?  If nothing else, it’s finally something I can get behind the PedNets on.  WE NEED MORE BIKE LANES…..STAT.


Not Safe For Work

Ok, I’m going on record right now.  While this one of the funniest videos sent to me in awhile, there is no way that this is even remotely safe for work.

If you are offended by items of a sexual nature, do NOT watch this video.

You have been warned…..enjoy Smile

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Have you spent 5 years hungover?

I’m looking at you on this one Simon.

Of course, who trusts a survey by an alcohol-free drink manufacture?  You would think their results might be a little skewed.


Pass the painkillers: The average Brit spends more than five YEARS of their life with a hangover

The average Brit will spend more than five years of their life with a hangover, according to new research.

They will suffer the ill effects for a whole day - usually a Sunday - at least once-a-week between the ages of 21 and 38.

During that period, another 12 days-a-year will be spent retching, sweating and feeling lousy because of weddings, birthdays and office parties.

Though their frequency reduces with age, hangovers continue at an average rate of 22.8 days per year until the age of 60.

In total, folk spend more than five-and-a-quarter years with a hangover in the course of a lifetime - or nearly 2,000 days, according to a survey by alcohol-free drinks maker Sweet Lady Beverages.

A spokesman for the firm, which polled 1,500 of its online visitors, said: 'We've long known that hangovers are a common curse in people's lives.

'But this research shows the worrying true figure. It's staggering to think we as a nation spend so much time - and so much money - doing something that makes us feel lousy.'

The figures, released yesterday, show that the average man and woman gets drunk - and hungover - at least once-a-week between the ages of 21 and 38.

Including impromptu parties and office events, they will spend 60 days per year with a hangover, or a total of 1,020 days in the 17-year period.

People will have 45 hangovers per year between the ages of 38 and 46, and 23 per year between the ages of 46 and 60.

Overall, 1,926 days - or 5.27 years - will be lost to hangovers in the course of an average lifetime.

The spokesman for Sweet Lady Beverages said: 'The message we can take from this is simple - by reducing our alcohol intake we can reduce the amount of time feeling wretched.'

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-1385024/The-average-Brit-spends-5-YEARS-life-hangover.html#ixzz1LxUk36wn

Monday, May 9, 2011

Smokes and Booze: Monday Quick Hits Vol 4

Here we are again with another Monday Quick hit.  First off, if you missed the Missouri Beer Festival this weekend in CoMO, you really should be ashamed.  A great time was held by all, go HERE to read my recap and to find out what Vendor BOTH Debi and I agreed upon (a rarity).


Next up are a few recipes that we learned this weekend.

We heard back from Uncle Fatty’s Rum Resort with the ingredients for “Obama’s Been Shot” – where you mix in a rocks glass, 2 ounces Hpnotiq liqueur with a float of white chocolate Godiva.  Personally, I prefer the version others have sent me – Two Shots of anything American and a splash of water.

whiskeyWildAnother recipe I tried this weekend was from the girls of Whiskey Wild, a Vegas Bomb- A combination of Crown Royal, Cranberry and Peach Schnapps, Malibu and Redbull.  Props to ladies for bringing liquor to a beer fest.

The last recipe is in honor of the Kentucky Derby this weekend and to the fact I had my first Mint Julep as well. 

  • 3 US fluid ounces (89 ml; 3.1 imp fl oz) Bourbon whiskey
  • 4 to 6 sprigs mint leaves
  • granulated sugar, to taste

Put mint, sugar, and a small amount of crushed or shaved ice into the bottom of a julep cup or tall glass. (Optional: Muddle the mint and sugar, then let stand for a bit to allow the broken leaves to release their flavor.) Add bourbon whiskey, top off with crushed or shaved ice, and stir well to mix and chill the mixture

While not for me (why put sugar in bourbon?), I can see the allure.

For something a little different, our friends over at Master of Malt have added the world’s oldest whisky liqueur to their collection, made from a 40 year old single malt (Speyside).

According to the company, the 40 year old single malt at the heart of this liqueur hails from a Speyside distillery, and whilst the exact origins remain a closely guarded secret. The secret distillery is touted to be one of the world's most famous, and one known for its rich, sherry-matured whiskies.

Master of Malt sales director Ben Ellefsen said this is a liqueur for single malt connoisseurs, and hence the company had spent a lot of time picking subtle flavours which highlighted the malt.

"We've used top quality, authentic ingredients including cinnamon bark, cloves and orange peel, and we couldn't be more proud of the results," Ellefsen added.

Jump on over to their site (http://www.masterofmalt.com) and check out their product line.  They do samples Smile

levSunday was Mother’s Day, and here at S & B, we do it up right.  I want my wife to have the best, so of course she had Guinness.  We did bring in and try a few new products though, so expect reviews on Stone Brewing Company’s Stone Levitation Ale and Camarena Tequila (Possibly Debi’s first review).  Stay Tuned.

Finally, if there are any Bar Tenders, Owners or Distributors out there…..I wanted to share an observation.  Customer Service goes a long way.  This weekend, we met tons of great people that pitched their products very well.  I can say, that in several instances….they have inspired me to go back and revisit their various offering again…if for no other reason than how professionally they acted.  Likewise, there were some black spots on the weekend.  Sometimes you only get one shot to make an impression…and if you blow it, you loose.

I hope everyone had a great weekend and gave their Mother’s and Wives a lot of love.  They deserve it. 

Until Next Time, Cheers.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Missouri Beer Festival (Recap)

I know I know….I haven’t done a Missouri Brew Tour lately, but that is because of today’s event, the long awaited Missouri Beer Festival.  I figured I would get to sample a few of MO’s best and lay out my plans for the next stops.  The fest didn’t disappoint.

Located at the Stoney Creek Inn, the main hall in the hotel was SAM_0451packed.  I was a little taken aback at the turn out, but very happy too.  I hadn’t expected this many people (I would say roughly 500+ cycled through) and Mid-MO represented itself well.  Hopefully this will prove that Columbia can support an event like this , and will continue to grow next year.

There was food, music, motorcycles and women dressed like St. Paulie Girls…..what more could a man want?  Beer, and there was plenty of that too.


For the record, I didn’t go into today with the intention to review every beer on hand.  I wanted to sample, chat and just take in as much as possible.  That said, I will say what worked for me, and what didn’t.

Best Beer- I’m actually going to give two #1s here.  Mostly because I know what I like, but I also know some people don’t dig the hops as much as I do.  Plus, Tall Grass from from Kansas, so I wanted to also highlight the best from Missouri as well.

For ME, the best beer available was Tall Grass Brewing Co’s Oasis.  A combination of an ESB and an IPA, I just call it an OUTSTANDING Hop Bomb in a glass.  I could drink it all night.  Tall Grass’ Buffalo Sweat was Debi’s favorite, and appeared to be a big winner with the crowd as well….especially considering they ran out.  I also wanted to add that the Rep on Site (Kara) has the greatest title I have ever seen – Purveyor of Canned Craft Libations for the Great State of Missouri. She knew her beer and could talk the talk. 

The other “Best Beer” was from Public House Brewing Company out SAM_0456of Rolla MO.  They had two beers on tap, their “Bird and Baby Mild” (which my british friend said was SPOT ON) and the Revelations Stout.  I personally thought the stout was excellent, very malty and it sat at the other end of the spectrum from TG’s Oasis.  Being a Guinness man at heart, I am very particular about my stouts, yet I really liked PHB’s and would serve it happily to any of my friends.  I also enjoyed speaking with Josh Stacy, the owner PHB (and NOT in the picture, sorry), and I definitely think we will be going to Rolla soon as part of the Missouri Brew Tour. 

Best Staff- This was a tough one, because I really liked both Josh and Kara, who represented their respective companies very well. 

The girls from Whiskey Wild were a lot of fun to talk to as well, and they get creative props for actually bring a cocktail to a beer fest. 

As it is, I spoke to a lot of people there, and in the end I would have to say the folks from 1839 Taphouse won me over.  I didn’t catch the gentleman’s name (which is sometimes a sign of great SAM_0457conversation, as it just flowed), but was he very friendly and knowledgeable of their entire beer line.  We stood and talked for some time, about everything from Music, to beer, to Hopz Cigars, to beer and then drank some beer.  I know he works bar on Wednesday Nights….so I will have to swing in and check out the place (and the Moose Drool).  I can honestly say that I am not the bar fly like I used to be, and 1839 Taphouse would not have been on my radar as I associate it with the College Scene.  Thanks to the friendliness of their crew today, I’ll give it a try.

Best Food – There were all types of food available to try-, from chips and dips, to wings and hotdogs.  Pizza was also fairly popular, but hands down the best food there was from 44 Stone Public House.  Mark and Dave were both on hand, and I commented to Debi that they looked they were in a food challenge from Top Chef.  Limited cooking space, trying to serve everyone and busting their hump.  I had the Lamb Sliders paired with the Twisted Thistly IPA.  Excellent.  I think a testament to how good the food was could have been seen by the LONG line throughout the whole event. They both represented well and everyone I spoke to loved it.  Great Job.SAM_0450

What didn’t work?  The two things that didn’t work well for me were both with the larger companies.  First, the folks from Goose Island were a little rude.  Debi had purchased pint glasses from Sonshine Graphics, and like many other people, we were using them for sampling.  Usually, this meant that you were getting a larger pour, and you didn’t have go looking for a trashcan to get rid of your cup.  At GI, they refused to pour into the glass (saying it was against the law) and they were a little stingy with the samples given.  They didn’t seem as engaged as other reps, and I personally felt they had “Better places to be”.  No skin of my back, it just seems that they are a great match for InBev.

The other one that rubbed me a little wrong was Boulevard.  They were tucked back in the corner, and the rep was not very engaging.  I spoke to him briefly about their Smokestack Series, especially since I had just reviewed 6th Glass, and asked why they had such a limited selection there today.  His response was there was a BIGGER event in St. Louis and this is all they sent him with.  Fair enough, but when Debi tried the Two Jokers Double-Wit (also from the Smokehouse Series) and didn’t like it (rather openly) his answer reaction was along the lines of “Tough”.  The reason that didn’t sit well with me was that he just told me he was the brewer of that beer.  If I had a customer offer criticism, I would have been trying to figure out the why?  It’s also wasn't like there were people queuing up for the beer…so had a few minutes that he could have gotten some honest feedback from her, but it was like he blew her off.  Not cool.

In the end, the GREAT far exceeded the bad.  The two companies that definitely benefitted the most by the exposure were 44 Stone and Tall Grass.  Their offerings were a hit not just with me, but everywhere I looked. You could tell by the demand that they were well received.

For a first time event, I thought everything went smooth and there was plenty of variety for everyone.   I think a big THANK YOU should go out to Tom Bradley and Missouri Life for putting this together.  Thanks also goes out to the vendors, there are some excellent beers in the Midwest, and it’s about time Missouri hosted something like this.  I am already looking forward to bigger and better next year.  Two thumbs up.


As an added note, I ran into Gary Nolan right when he was coming in.  He shared a great story about “That Guy” with us, and some exciting news….but I wont steal that thunder.  I was happy to see him back in CoMO and look forward to great things from him.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

“Osama Been Shot” and Uncle Fatty

I continue to hate the world of Political Correctness (HERE and HERE are some examples of PC gone awry).

Here we have Uncle Fatty’s Rum Resort, a privately owned establishment, that wanted to show some patriotism and celebrate the death of Osama Bin Laden.  Sadly, they have now had to recant and apologize for fear that they would be offending someone (Muslims).

I wish they would had held the party anyway, but I understand his logic, because once the MSM gets hold of his story and put their own spin on it, then business for him goes into the crapper.

Well, if nothing else….we get a new drink recipe out of it.

Osama Been Shot - a blood red shooter made with vodka and grenadine

Bar Apologizes for Planned Bin Laden Party

A local Chicago bar apologized, Wednesday for a party they had planned to celebrate the killing of Osama Bin Laden

Uncle Fatty's Rum Resort received plenty of flack for their planned celebration, which was set to take place on Friday and was described as "bursting with American pride."

According to a Monday news release, The "Osama bin Laden Is Rot'n" bash offered free entry to guests wearing clothing sporting American "swagger," and was to offer specialty cocktails like "The Floating Terrorist" and "Osama Been Shot" -- a blood red shooter made with vodka and grenadine.

On Wednesday, the bar retracted the theme, issuing an apology through its public relations firm after realizing that some people were offended by the idea behind the party.

    "Our intention was never to offend anyone," says a representative of Uncle Fatty's. "After further consideration we have decided that this was a joke that was taken too far and have therefore decided to change the focus of the party. We have pushed the envelope in the past by hosting parties with irreverent themes, but we now recognize that this was perceived as inappropriate."
Read more at the Source: http://www.nbcchicago.com/the-scene/events/121265934.html#ixzz1LVIOCIDn

Happy Cinco De Mayo with the Pogues

I can honestly say that this is the first Pogues song I ever heard….way back in the 80’s while watching “Friday Night Videos” long before MTV.  My first thought was WTF, but it grew on me. 

So what better way to think of Cinco De Mayo at work (so it has to be without alcohol right?) than with Shane and the boys.


PS- He’s still alive Jeremy

From Wikipedia -"Fiesta" is a single by The Pogues, featured on their 1988 album If I Should Fall from Grace with God. It was written by Jem Finer and Shane MacGowan, based on a Spanish fairground melody Finer had picked up (this melody is an appeal or lure from a sausages kiosk named "salchichas Uranga (sausages Uranga)" in the feasts of the city of Almería -Feria de Almería-, in southern Spain). The video was directed by popular British comedian and actor Adrian Edmondson. "Fiesta" was the last Pogues singles to make the UK Top 30 while MacGowan was with the band. The song is a live highlight and has been included in most setlists since its release, often as the closer with whistle player Spider Stacy adding percussion by beating a beer tray against his head. The track was also used at home games for Celtic Football Club up until mid 2006 whenever a goal was scored by the team and is currently used as the entrance music for London Irish rugby team as the players enter the field. The lyrics refer to the Spanish city of Almería, as well as former bassist Cait O'Riordan's departure from the group, and subsequent marriage to Elvis Costello. It was also used on Patrick Sébastien's popular show Sébastien c'est fou on the French TV channel TF1 in the 90s.

There is a Portuguese cover by the Despe e Siga band, called "Festa". Despe e Siga is an alter ego band of Peste & Sida, a Portuguese rock and punk rock band from the 80s and 90s.

Worlds Longest Cigar

Kinda cool, but also a waste of a lot of good tobacco….especially when you realize it is just a publicity stunt and that he has done it 4 times previously.  He is already planning to do 100m next.

Cuban, breaking own record, rolls longest cigar

4721428HAVANA - A Cuban cigar roller broke his own record Tuesday by rolling the world's longest cigar, a monster smoke that stretched 268 feet 4 inches , or most of the length of a football field.

Resting on tables, it sprawled through El Morro, an old Spanish fort overlooking Havana Bay, where Cuba is holding its annual International Tourism Fair.

The cigar, once it is officially accepted by Guinness World Records in London, will eclipse the previous record cigar of 148 feet 9 inches , both rolled by Jose Castelar Cairo, better known as "Cueto.

Cueto, 67, has set the record four previous times and feels it is a matter of national pride for Cuba, producer of the world's finest cigars, to keep it.

"It has to be in Cuba always because Cuba is where the best tobacco in the world is," he said.

Cueto, who learned cigar rolling when he was 5 years old, started work on the current cigar on April 25 and had help from several assistants.

The length of the cigar was verified by Rhys Patrick of the British embassy in Havana, who said the information would be sent in a letter to Guinness requesting confirmation of the record.

Read more: http://www.leaderpost.com/life/Cuban+breaking+record+rolls+longest+cigar/4721376/story.html#ixzz1LTrydoSU

George Washington and Beer

MMMMMMMM, some of my favorite things combined – History and Beer.  I’m actually kinda surprised that it took this long for someone to do this, so kudos to the Schmaltz Brewing Company (makers of He’Brew, reviewed HERE) for taking this on.  If you are in NY, you can sample the beer on May 18 at Rattle N Hum, a mid-Manhattan bar. I would love to hear how it goes.

Also, for those interested, here is the verbatim reading of the recipe-

"To Make Small Beer
Take a large Siffer [Sifter] full of Bran 110504-gw-brew-10a_grid-4x2Hops to your Taste. -- Boil these 3 hours then strain out 30 Gall[ons] into a cooler put in 3 Gall[ons] Molasses while the Beer is Scalding hot or rather draw the Melasses into the cooler & St[r]ain the Beer on it while boiling Hot. let this stand till it is little more than Blood warm then put in a quart of Yea[s]t if the Weather is very Cold cover it over with a Blank[et] & let it Work in the Cooler 24 hours then put it into the Cask -- leave the bung open till it is almost don[e] Working -- Bottle it that day Week it was Brewed."


Founding lager

He was our nation's thirst president.

In 1757, back when George Washington was in the Virginia militia, the then-colonel jotted down his secret recipe "to make small beer."

Although the formula has long been a prized possession of the New York Public Library, the Coney Island Brewing Co. is finally putting history to good use by cooking up a batch of the Revolutionary brew.

"Take a large Siffer [Sifter] full of Bran Hops to your Taste. Boil these 3 hours then strain out 30 Gall[ons] into a cooler," the recipe begins.

After adding molasses, Washington advises, "let this stand till it is little more than Blood warm then put in a quart of Yea[s]t." In the event of a cold winter, he suggests wrapping the cooler in a blanket.

The original dollar drafts are being crafted as part of a celebration of the main building's centennial.

"This is a great way to bring one of our real treasures to life and make it relevant today," Ann Thornton, the library's acting director, said of bringing back the swig party.

The recipe was contained in a notebook containing George Washington's diary and other musings, such as the names of his wagon horses: Nelly, Jolly, Ball, Jack, Rock, Woodfin, Prince, Buck, Diamond and Crab.

A batch of the suds, called Fortitude's Founding Father Brew, will be served to craft-beer aficionados May 18 and to guests at a centennial celebration May 23.

The porter's unique flavor, described as a full and robust, is expected to set off fireworks with brew lovers.

Washington was well-known among his peers for frequently indulging his taste for good beer.

On the day when the last British troops left New York in 1783, Washington stopped at the old Bull's Head Tavern -- located on the street that later became the Bowery -- for a draught of ale, according to "Brewed in America," the well-respected beer-history tome.

His headquarters when he was in New York City had been at the inn kept by Samuel Fraunces -- Fraunces Tavern -- which still stands today on Pearl Street.

Read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/nyc_to_sip_gw_brew_yeSF8tmeEt9W4xSot6DozK#ixzz1LTdbQr7c

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

May the 4th Be With You

star-wars-dayIt’s no secret that I am a Star Wars fan.  Some of you even knew me back in the day when I put the “Fan” into Fanatic.

From my Lego Darth Vader Alarm Clock, to my new Tauntaun Sleeping Bag (Thanks Easter Bunny), I love Star Wars.

Star Wars has even made two other appearances here on S&B (HERE and HERE), so it’s only fitting that I have a post on May the 4th.

Enjoy and Cheers -






Carp “Hunters”, Skiing and Wolverine Claws…they must be drunk

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Stupid is as Stupid does

Looking like a long haired caveman and drunk probably doesn’t help when you go through airport security.  Saying are Bin Laden and you have a bomb DEFINITELY will get you stopped.

Drunk Man At JFK Airport Tells Ticket Agent 'I Am Bin Laden And I Have A Bomb'

ChristianBoncorps_20110503073321_320_240NEW YORK - Dawdling JFK Airport security waited 40 minutes before calling cops after a man told a ticket agent that he was Usama bin Laden and was carrying a bomb, furious law enforcement officials said Tuesday.

Christian Boncorps, 61, told an Air France ticket agent, "My name is bin Laden, and I have a bomb in my bag."

But by the time cops were called, luggage belonging to the boozed-up suspect was already aboard a Paris-bound jet that he planned to get on, sources said.

The incident began around 10:20pm local time Friday, when Boncorps showed up drunk at the ticket counter to get his boarding pass, sources said.

An Air France reservation clerk asked him what he had in his bag, thinking he might be trying to smuggle more booze aboard, one source said, prompting the irked Boncorps to make his comment about the now-dead terror chief.

But instead of calling Port Authority cops immediately, the clerk escorted him to a Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screening site, where workers simply put him through standard pre-flight screening procedures.

"When a cop finally shows up, [Boncorps] was putting his shoes back on," said a Port Authority police source.

An Air France rep did not reply to an email about what occurred. Ann Davis, a TSA spokeswoman, said the incident was being reviewed.

"TSA continues to look into the circumstances surrounding this matter,'' she said. "However, travelers can be assured that every TSA and airport employee is trained to take any and all threats seriously and notify law enforcement to ensure the safety of the airport and air travelers," Davis added.

But Paul Nunziato, president of the Port Authority Police Benevolent Association, was furious.

"We got lucky that this passenger wasn't a serious threat," he said.

Boncorps, from Yonkers, N.Y., could not be reached for comment but was charged with filing a false report. He wound up pleading guilty to disorderly conduct at his arraignment in Queens Criminal Court, a violation for which he paid a $250 fine.

Read more: http://www.myfoxdc.com/dpp/news/drunk-man-at-jfk-airport-tells-ticket-agent-i-am-bin-laden-and-i-have-a-bomb-050311#ixzz1LILRl6J9

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