beer alcohol cocktails cocktail recipe beer festivals Restaurant Review

  • 2020 was a rough year in a lot of ways and generally, we like to do at least one restaurant feature every month, sometimes two or even three. With dine-in options mostly closed or simply not to my level of comfort, I stopped doing restaurant features the way I liked to do previously. I still continued to order out but it took time for the industry to catch up and start producing options that made sense beyond the typical take-out heroes like burritos, sushi, sandwiches, and sandwiches. I was a bit nervous for New Years Day dinner since not only is this a big night for foodies in general... but it's also my anniversary. Luckily we saw Parc Bistro on TV and loved their attitude and creativity so we decided to order their Beef Wellington and try it out.

  • I haven't had too many chances to do restaurant features this year but The Gathering Table Restaurant at Ballard Inn, located in California's Santa Ynez Valley was absolutely worth the experience. It goes to show that you can still offer a fine dining experience in a safe way despite challenges from the pandemic. While their outdoor space would normally be more decorative than functional, there's a certain sense of romance to sitting in a garden with a string of lights above you while enjoying fine wine and food on par with anything you could find in Los Angeles.

  • With cold weather and holiday season upon us, certain drinks such as "cream" spirits are back in stock and that warms my heart. While nobody that I know has managed to create an authentic packaged coquito, I am thrilled to see that Cutwater Spirits is continuing to innovate when it comes to rum cream. 

  • No matter which side you are on, roughly have the country is going to be disappointed based on the results of the election over the next few weeks. So, while some are wringing their hands and crying nervously, we love what Solemn Oath brewery in Chicago (Naperville, IL) is doing by reminding us of the patriotic role of beer in America and how no matter who you hope will win... beer makes bad news palatable.

  • Koloa Rum was one of the first brands that ever sent me product to feature on ManTripping and I've been a fan ever since. While I've enjoyed drinking their rum in Hawaii I didn't realize they had started expanding to the mainland till they contacted me the other day with this fun and funky Halloween-themed rum cocktail recipe, the Eyeball Daiquiri.

  • The martini is simultaneously one of the easiest and most well know vodka cocktails. It is immortalized in popular culture as the preferred drink of James Bond who's impact singlehandedly changed martini cocktails from a gin base to vodka. Despite the fact that it is generally a pretty easy drink to make, there are some tips that you must follow if you want to create the absolutely perfect martini. Here's what Bob Nolet, Master Distiller at Nolet Spirits, producers of Ketel One Vodka.

  •  When it comes to Vodka, for many brands marketing is even more important than the actual quality but Crystal Head has been delivering quality and innovation for almost as as this site has been around. In fact, they were one of the first brands to send us a sample to try more than 10 years ago. Today I continue to applaud their innovation as they push what vodka can be by introducing one of the first commercially available agave vodkas, Crystal head Onyx.

  • What guy doesn’t love beer? Some are passionate about their brew, and may fancy themselves a Cicerone by hobby. Finding a gift that isn’t a six-pack may be challenging, so we’ve come up with a list of favorites across price ranges.

  • While folks are finally starting to recognize tequila as a premium spirit with a complex and diverse collection of properties, there's another Mexican spirit following quickly on its heels. A few years ago mezcal was simply tequila's rougher tougher, renegade brother but as someone who loves agave spirits, it is wonderful to see new products reaching the market that focuses on the positive aspects of Mexican culture and heritage instead of merely throwing a revolver, donkey, or a sombrero on the bottle and shipping it out to bars. One of the products that recently impressed me in this new wave of premium mezcal was Vamonos Riendo Mezcal.

  • While many people are out and about again, others of us such as myself are still focused on staying at home as much as possible. It's tough though since frankly, I'm getting tired of the things I know how to make and sometimes you want a restaurant-quality experience that is just easy. Delivery often fails in this regard since that crispy, fresh from the oven experience just doesn't work after sitting in a delivery bag for 20-30 minutes. That's why I love these treats that Porto's Baker from Los Angeles sent us to try out as part of their Porto's Bake At Home experience.

  • As the summer ends and the weather for many of you begins to cool down as we prepare for winter, I prefer to think of all those Caribbean islands that I can't wait to visit again soon. That's why I was so excited to share these two recipes by CÎROC and Mixologist Brandon Sutton inspired by the recently canceled West Indian Day Parade.

  • When it comes to beer, it seems like everyone is an expert, so here's some beer trivia for you to help impress your friends....

  • Who's ready to celebrate National Rum Day? Here's some awesome rum cocktail recipes from Zaya Rum!

  •  Cutwater Spirits is one of my favorite distillers and Bali Hai is one of my absolute favorite brunch spots in San Diego... plus they make the most wickedly awesome Mai Tai this side of Hawaii. The folks at Cutwater Spirits came out of Ballas Point Brewing and are one of the most exciting success stories in San Diego for not only innovation with creating excellent beer and then spirits but also truly understanding marketing and hospitality. Here are some of their Tiki Drink Recipes featuring Bali Hai Rum!

  • Are you ready to celebrate National Rum day? Ron Barcelo sent over some tasty cocktails to help us celebrate...

  • It’s been 50 years since Jockey Diane Crump became the first female to ride in The Kentucky Derby® -- and this year’s Woodford Reserve $1,000 Mint Julep Cup program celebrates that milestone. 

  • Looking for some perfect drinks to cool down this summer? Our friends at Ketel One and Zacapa have some suggestions for the perfect summertime cocktails...

  • August 3rd marks National Watermelon Day and CÎROC wants you to celebrate summer the right way. Bring a touch of fun to any Summer celebration with limited-time only CÎROC Summer Watermelon vodka, five times distilled and made from fine French grapes with a distinct blend of fresh watermelon and other natural flavors.

  • The Humboldt Distillery is located in Humboldt County, California and makes several spirits, including vodka and rum, that appeal to those with a more humble(dt) preference. We tried Humboldt’s Finest vodka as well as the organic small batch vodka they make. Both are excellent. Our preference in sipping is perhaps with the organic small batch, but it’s a close race. For mixers, Humbdoldt’s Finest is a great one.

  • Commemorate the day by mixing up the Basil Paloma, a unique twist on the classic Paloma cocktail featuring Hornitos Black Barrel Tequila, or the Coctel Del Barista, a sweet and refreshing cocktail featuring Hornitos Reposado Tequila, a variant created by Hornitos decades before it became common practice.

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