I want to admit something. While on vacation, I finally tried two standards at the bar that I make ALL THE TIME, but I had never tasted myself.
First off, the White Russian.
While at my in-laws house, I was faced with a selection of liquors, none of which really made me go, “Let’s be creative and make something.” So the first night, I sipped a Screwdriver (vodka/OJ for anyone who doesn’t know). The second night, it hit me. I had the stuff for a White Russian. Equal parts Kahlua and Vodka, topped with milk. Easy stuff. So I made that. And now I understand why I make so many a night.
SO YUM. It was like my favorite coffee drink with a kick. On top of that, its easy to adjust the amount of vodka to decide the amount of kick in your drink. (Less vodka for me… more Kahlua.)
My second standard I tried for the first time was a gin & tonic.
Yes, yes I tried it for the first time last week. What’s funny if I’ve convinced countless people to try a gin & tonic based on, “It’s a really popular drink if you want to try something different…” and yet I hadn’t ever tried one myself.
Now I understand why people get hooked on them. It was so refreshing! Light and smooth. A squeeze of lime in it gave it that citrus kick that will make me want it as one of my summer drinks. I usually more of a coconut rum girl, but I could become a gin lover as well.
Sometimes drinks are old standards for a reason… its because they are really good! So next time you want to try something new… maybe its actually time to try something old.
Every Christmas season, there’s a night I look forward to more than most… the tree decorating party at the bar! This past Monday was the 2013 edition of the fun night. The concept is easy… go buy airplane bottles of your favorite liquor, drink it, and then decorate the bottle. Ta da!… a Christmas ornament!
You can keep it simple:
You can get complex:
Beer cans work great as well:
And we’ve found that Patron bottles are particularly fun:
Red Bull gives you wings, so how about an angel?
It doesn’t even have to be an ornament… make just some great decorations:
Needless to say, its a super fun night, and it amazing to see how creative your friends are when given liquor and a glue gun. So maybe someday when you want to put a twist on your Christmas party, turn it into a decorating party, and let the fun — and drinking — begin!
I love when I have a conversation one day, and then a couple days later that conversation’s topic jumps up again elsewhere.
Monday night, I was talking about how Shiner has been doing a yearly brew for the last several years. Specifically:
- Shiner 96 — Märzen/Oktoberfest
- Shiner 97 — Bohemian Black Lager
- Shiner 98 — Bavarian Style Amber
- Shiner 99 — Munich Style Helles Lager
- Shiner 100 Commemorator — Starkbier
- Shiner 101 — Czech-style Pilsner
- Shiner 102 — American Style Double Wheat Ale
- Shiner 103 — Wild Hare Pale Ale
I mentioned they had to be on 104, but I had no idea what it was. Then two days later it appears on my Facebook feed. Shiner White Wing. Then today, I snagged myself a six pack of it. Serious. Joy.
Now, anyone familiar with my beer preferences knows I call myself a “wheat beer girl,” so when I found out 104 was a Belgian-style wheat ale I might have squealed. Out loud. In fact, no might to it… I did.
That cloudy, golden color. That bright white head. I’ll take that over any other beer ANY day.
If you’re looking for the next Blue Moon, you’re not looking in the right place. Personally, I compare it more to the classic Hoegaarden and I can’t wait to try my next glass with a squeeze of lemon. It’s more about the wheat than it is the orange and coriander, so it ends very dry on the palette.
Hoegaarden was my first favorite witbier, and I regret having strayed from it over the last five years. I’ve become a big fan of Shocktop, even over Blue Moon, because its much more fruity of a flavor. But when I took my first drink of Shiner’s White Wing, I was slammed back in my memory of my first favorite. I love me a fruity beer (see Abita Strawberry Harvest) but sometimes… sometimes you gotta go back to the flavors of the standards that have stood the test of time. I’d expect nothing less from oldest independent brewery in Texas than to bring to my taste buds a classic witbier flavoring. And boy did they deliver! Love it!