Newsflash: Trader Joe’s Now has BOXED WINE

Trader Joe's Boxed Wine

The headline says it all. Maybe the most important headline of your/my/OUR lives.

According to a smug, boxed-wine loving friend, this Trader Joe’s boxed wine has been a thing for awhile now.

But I just found out about it. So I figured a lot of you didn’t know, ether.

Well, it’s here, and it’s more than adequate. I LOVE YOU TRADER JOES. Thank you and good night.

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Food Porn of the Day: Ultimate Hangover Sandwich

Ultimate Hangover Breakfast Sandwich Seattle

On a recent visit back to my hometown of Seattle, my friends and I were in a dire hangover situation. We needed greasy goodness but after a night of questionable “dining” choices (midnight quesadillas and – dare I admit it? Domino’s pizza) we also wanted something that was actually well-made and worth our time. No ordinary diner breakfast would do.

Luckily pub/restaurant Lot No. 3 had us covered. This is their grilled cheese (made with Beecher’s – some of the best cheese ever, also Seattle-based) with three important additions: a runny fried egg, caramelized onions, and BACON. But not just any bacon. House candied bacon. Be still my heart (literally, I think I had a mini heart attack while devouring this, but it was worth it). Plus, it doesn’t come with some bullshit salad on the side or whatever. It comes with a miniature bowl of tomato soup. TOMATO SOUP! What else could you possibly need when you’re hungo and hangry?!

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Cigars and Beers: The Perfect Pair

FlyingDog_CAO_CigarPack_web-300x300

One of the perks of being a craft beer fan is that breweries are always doing crazy, interesting things. For instance, Flying Dog introduced an old bay beer, Stone collaborates with everyone and their sister, and Telegraph Brewing Company is even helping a band release their album ON their label. That being said, it should be no surprise that Flying Dog collaborated with CAO Cigars to create a suggested Craft Beer and Cigars pairing. Together, the two determined which Flying Dog beers would pair the best with which CAO Cigars. Then, they packaged the cigars and published the pairings for all to try. Turns out they were pretty spot-on. Check out the pairings, the beers, and the cigars. If you can’t find either in your area, take the style of each and pair them together.

Here’s what you can expect from the Flying Dog/CAO pairing:

Flying Dog Pearl Necklace Oyster Stout and CAO Mx2

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The oyster stout carries the typical malty sweetness, but finishes dry and includes earthy and bitter undertones throughout. It’s definitely an interesting stout worth trying. Be warned – this is not a breakfast stout style, so the sweetness is not as strong as it is in other stouts. The Mx2 cigar is paired well with this stout. The cigar complements the dry and bitter finish of the stout. The Mx2 is a darker cigar, but not as bold as you may think. Instead, it has a medium strength with a smooth smoke from beginning to end. The flavors of the cigar include some herbal spice characteristics as well as those of coffee and bitter chocolate.

Flying Dog Snake Dog IPA and CAO Sol

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Hoppy meets Spicy. The snake dog delivers the promised citrus and hop flavors throughout the brew. Nice crisp mouthfeel makes it a refreshing brew with a bitter and sweet bite. Not sure what to expect, I lit the CAO Sol and was pleasantly surprised with the spicy taste that went with the IPA. The cigar had a peppery flavor throughout the smoke. Moving through the smoke, earthy notes and even some citrus were included. Another medium cigar, but it complemented the IPA well. Possibly a tie for first place in this pairing list…

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Endless Road Trip Marfa: Hotel Paisano

Marfa Paisano Margarita

Marfa’s Hotel Paisano is a very special place. Not only is it a gorgeous historic building with an ultra-classy patio & bar, but it’s also the location/headquarters of the 1956 film Giant, starring Elizabeth Taylor and James Dean. Film, architecture, and a stiff drink? Count me IN!

As I mentioned, Paisano, on the National Register of Historic Places, is a beautiful building. After its silver screen heyday it sadly started to fall into disrepair, but luckily it was purchased by new owners and restored to its original splendor, plus renovated to include modernized rooms, shops, etc. Just look at it:

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The Best/Worst New Invention for Your Summer 2014 Drinking Agenda

BeatBox Booze

Cool, look, a new stereo system!

No, wait, it’s just sugary pre-made cocktails in a candy-colored boombox packaging. Who needed wine in a box when you can have “wine-based cocktails” in a Beatbox? I was too afraid to purchase and taste-test for myself when I saw these at my local HEB, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t pretty curious. If these aren’t 100% horrible, I could see myself ironically bringing some to a summer pool party this year.

The three flavors I’ve seen, ranked from most to least offensive:
3. Blue Razzberry Lemonade (“raspberry” spelled with not one, but two Zs!)
2. Box A’Rita (you can’t make a real margarita with wine, come on now)
1. Cranberry Limeade (it’s the one that sounds least like Guy Fieri named it, so I have to give it my thumbs up)

Someone out there has tried these, right? Y’all know my affinity for funny/novelty cheap packaged booze. Tell me if the joke is worth it.

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Cocktail O’ Clock: The Royal Monarch

The_Royal_Monarch Cocktail

In honor of the fact that I finally started to watch Game of Thrones this month (Up to season 3 holla! Better late than never, right?) and my boyfriend and I are kinda addicted, here’s a very royal cocktail from Crown Royal. It uses Crown XO, their reserve-quality whiskey which is suuuuper smooooth. This goes down way too easy. Just like some of the characters on Game of Thrones. Ha ha.

The Royal Monarch

1 oz Crown Royal XO
.75 oz sweet vermouth
.235 oz maraschino liqueur
.25 oz herbal liqueur (Benedectine)

Combine in a mixing glass. Stir all ingredients with ice and strain into cocktail glass. Garnish with lemon twist.

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Getting Tropical with Coconut Water Vodka

I”ve been a fan of coconut water for years. It”s basically nature”s Gatorade: super hydrating and full of electrolytes. So, what better way to improve upon it than by turning it into something hella dehydrating that saps you of your energy? That”s right, I”m talking about sweet, sweet alcohol. There have been some coconut water cocktail recipes popping up around the Internet, and now Three Olives has taken it one step further by introducing a Coconut Water flavored vodka. Three Olives clearly knows I am a connoisseur of both coconut water and booze, so they sent me this huge sample pack to review.

Coconut Water Vodka Elvis Edition

Yes, Three Olives Coconut Water vodka is Elvis-themed. Why? According to the press pack:

Three Olives Vodka honors Elvis Presley with this refreshing Coconut Water Flavored Vodka to celebrate his long standing love affair with Hawaii and his legendary style and groundbreaking performances that have transcended time.

Hm. Okay, I”ll take it.

They”re not kidding about the COCONUT smell and taste here. If you”re not a coconut lover, this might not be the vodka for you. But! If you love sweet, tropical drinks, this could be your new magic ingredient. To be 100% honest, I”m not sure what the difference between coconut vodka and coconut water vodka is, but oh well. I”m guessing casino online they”re just riding the wave of the trend, and that”s fine. Anyway, here”s a cocktail two ways: the Three Olives version and my personal version. This is very sweet and coconutty, so cut it with some unflavored vodka and/or more soda water if you want it milder.

Coconut Water Vodka Cocktail Pour

 The Elvis

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