Thursday, December 30, 2010

Happy New Year!

During the holiday season I like to drink Southern Comfort Punch. It is actually called "Holiday Punch" in the Southern Comfort pamphlet I have from 1974 (real date of pamphlet may not be 1974, but it has a 1974 feel to it and me and my family have been drinking this for a long time, so you get the idea).

I made it at least three times in December for various events I held in my home. Some of those events were as simple as me decorating the Christmas tree. My family drank it on Christmas Eve, like we do every year. I think drinking this mixture at other times of the year would ruin the special holiday magic it holds for me.

So, since the new year is fast approaching, get started mixing up your batch now or wait until after Thanksgiving 2011. Directions after ingredient picture below:

  1. Get punch bowl.
  2. Add one container of frozen orange juice (any brand will do). It can still be slightly frozen because I think that makes the punch colder and it will thaw eventually.
  3. Add one container of Minute Maid Limeade. I always use Minute Maid Limeade because it just tastes better.
  4. Add some Cranberry Juice Cocktail--classic Ocean Spray works best. Don't use real cranberry juice. This is no time to try to be healthy. I like the punch to have a pinkish orange color, so I add enough cranberry juice to achieve that look.
  5. Add Southern Comfort. Use your judgement here. No matter how much you add, it will pretty much taste the same. So you decide how drunk you want people to end up and how much of your precious alcohol you want to use. Southern Comfort is relatively cheap and I like people to have a good time, so I add a lot.
  6. Add a bunch of ice or an ice ring. You've made this pretty strong and the juices are pretty sweet, so it can handle a lot of melting ice without losing any of the flavor.
  7. Add a can or two of 7-Up before serving. The fizz makes it good, that's why I add it as close to guest arrival time as possible.
They say what you are doing on the first day of the new year will pretty much predict how that year will go for you. So what better symbolism for the year to come than the abundance of a bowl of punch shared with people you love. Wishing you joy and abundance in 2011!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

The Small Glass Approach

Saturdays have a way of slipping away too quickly or should I say "sipping" away? I probably shouldn't say "sipping away" because that's just the sort of stupid pun-ridden writing that would make someone like me stop reading this blog, and I want people like me to read this blog. So, forgive me for that and stick with this a bit longer.

I woke up at 7:30 this morning to go sit in my favorite chair surrounded by coffee, books, magazines, laptop, iTunes and big plans.

One hour in, on an innocent trip to the refrigerator to get a glass of juice, I noticed I had a bottle of Lindeman's Kriek (cherry) Lambic.

I was ready to take the bottle back to the little area of heaven I'd carved out for myself in the front room, when I realized it was a defining moment in my day. If I took the whole bottle with me, I'd sit there and drink the whole bottle. Then I'd be kind of lit up and the productive day I had planned would instead be a day spent indulging my basest drunken whims. Just so you know, I'm not against indulging my basest drunken whims, it's just that none of my basest drunken whims have ever resulted in a clean house.

Anyway, I decided to try the Small Glass Approach. The Small Glass Approach, or SGA, is an approach developed by me, in my kitchen, about two hours ago. The thought is that if I fill a small glass with cherry lambic goodness and take it to the living room with me, I will at least need to get up to get more, at which time I can reassess my situation. Do I really want to drink more? Do I really want to sit down again or is it time to get going?

To find the answer to those questions, please see picture of empty bottle of kriek lambic above sitting next to the smallish glass. I went to the Lindamen's web site to learn a little more about this stuff:
  • It also comes in pomme (apple), framboise (raspberry), cassis (black currents), and peche (peach).
  • I've tried them all and kriek (cherry) is my favorite.
  • I served it in a smallish glass but it should typically be served in a tall pretty glass.
  • It's got a pretty low alcohol content.
So, maybe I'll be able to get this house cleaned up after all. . . or, I could go buy another bottle and then hire a housekeeper on a drunken whim. Have a great Saturday.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Alpine Swag

Today was a foggy dreary day. I decided to stop in at the Alpine Tap Room after work for a drink or five.

I was drinking Old Style from a can and talking about the Cubs with Gunner, Larry and Dean when the Coors Light truck arrived. Dean asked Matt the beer guy if he had anything for us. And young Matt came through big.

He brought us three bottles of the new flavors of Mike's Hard Lemonade. The new margarita line includes peach, classic margarita, and raspberry flavors. He also brought us Miller High Life koozies, Miller Light rings that light up, and Coors Light/bottle opener key chains. It was like getting a swag bag as a presenter at the Alcoholic Academy Awards.

We taste tested the Mike's. I felt the peach flavor had a body odor aftertaste. Dean dumped the peach out. Larry hated it, so he drank it first to get it out of the way.

We liked the margarita flavor just fine, but the raspberry was our favorite. It reminded Larry of Sun Country Wine Coolers. I thought it tasted like Zotz candy. Other than the fact that it was free, the best part of drinking sugary malt liquor drinks in the afternoon was it made me feel like spring is finally here.

To summarize, stopping for drinks after work is always a good idea; asking the beer guy for free stuff is always a good idea. Oh, and I'm back.