Thanks Grant’s!!

Contest Prize

Something cool for participating online.

I think it was last October 2010 that I took part of an online contest at http://blog.grantswhisky.com. Mostly about knowledge of this Whisky brand, and apparently I won. The prize was a couple of their Grant’s printed tumblers, which at first I wouldn’t being able to get them because I live in Ecuador and prize shipping was only within the UK. Gracefully I got the congratulations from Grant’s people personally in an e-mail. I was so excited to know that they care and even took a time to let me know that they were to call Grant’s people in Ecuador to ask them to deliver the prize directly at my mailing address here in Quito. It did not take more than a couple of hours after I got the email when I found out that Grant’s Ecuador was delivering the same day a package containing not only a couple but a dozen of their beautiful tumblers! It made my day, I must say, I’ve never actually won anything by participating at online contests but only once by registering in a lottery site when they sent me a check for an actual One Dollar which would have cost me US$120 to being able to cash it. :(

So I am excited with my new adding to the bar. :)

Thanks Grant’s!

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Grant’s Whisky Blog

Whisky is by far one of the most appreciated spirits produced since many centuries ago. There is a science behind its elaboration and a science to follow for its appreciation, and enjoying.

Hopefully one day I will be lucky enough to visit one of the distilleries in Scotland such as William Grant and Sons’. In the meantime I like to enjoy of reading and learning from the people who have been involved in the continuous process of its elaboration and perfection. As a big fan of this glorious golden spirit, I would like to invite you to join Grant’s Whisky Blog at: http://blog.grantswhisky.com

Christmas is arriving and I can see already a bottle of Grant’s Scotch Whisky placed on each of the Christmas gift baskets which will be delivered to every person I know as a thankful gesture for the help offered during this 2010.

I love to prepare my Scottish Christmas’ favorite: Warm Woolly Sheep

http://www.cocktailsoftheworld.com/search-for-cocktails/cocktail/warm-woolly-sheep.html

Or simply:

Grant’s Scotch Whisky

Milk

Cinnamon Powder

Blend all and pour into shooter glasses, sprinkle cinnamon powder on top. Cheers!

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Bols Vintage Bottle with a history behind!

Bols is one of the most famous Liqueur and Spirits elaborating companies in the world. This company was founded by Lucas Bols in Amsterdam, The Netherlands during the 15th Century. Most of their Jenever has been bottled in pottery or clay bottles which have some value for bottle collectors. Mine has a value, sentimental value and a history behind, I am sure!

I’ve recently got it from my grandparents’ inheritance, which has basically contained those items that “the others” (basically family) would not appreciate or keep because of their lack of knowledge (from my point of view). Things that more than value have so much history behind since the day when they were acquired either by one of my grandparents or by their parents or their parents even!

So this Bols bottle once contained the precious Jenever, which is the national Dutch spirit by far. I’ve been searching around to find out its origins, because the bottle doesn’t say much the only text found is:

Erven Lucas Bols

Het Lootsje

Amsterdam

Three phrases that describe the name of its founder, the area where it was made and the city of course.

As I examine the bottle I can not feel any aromas of the precious liquid, but just the smell of age instead. I think of something similar and of course Gin is there, however I only have English London Dry Gin in my bar stock and this might not make it fair. I need to get pure dry Jenever next time we visit our relatives in Holland!

Juttertje is one of the other Dutch drink delicacies based on jenever but flavored and aromatized with herbs. I have that one and take a sip. It feels like Holland during winter time, this warm classic goes down through my throat and heats up my whole being. And it is that the feeling you get when you try any jenever-based drink, it heals your coldness and brings your internal machine back to work again. You don’t appreciate it more if you have too much that’s for sure.

This feeling makes me think about the past, those scenes in the movies about Second World War, when Holland was attacked and occupied by the cruel Nazis and ordinary people became heroes because of their compassion for the Jewish to whom they would hide in their homes. A time of scarcity,  lack of food and medicine. A proper time for using unconventional products in unthinkable actions. Jenever being one of those products, was literally used as much more than a drink to give you the warmth feeling during those bones-chilling winters in Europe. It was also used as a medicine (after all that was the main purpose of its invention during its origins) I can see a Dutch housewife soaking a towel in jenever to apply it over the burning forehead of a sick victim, at the same time used as an oral anesthesic for those who have been hit by a Nazi-stained bullet.

At present, Jenever is appreciated by many people for its pleasant aroma and outstanding history, not only being used as physical pain reliever but also as a soul warmer in tough times.

My Bols vintage bottle might not have a clear date of elaboration but I know for sure it has at least 40 years of stories to tell.. If she could only speak!

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Boone’s Not What It Used To Be

Flavored Fruit Wine BeverageLast week I felt like drinking something cold and refreshing, and it is that some days my body craves for different elements in a way that I’ve called “give your body what it’s asking for” I was walking on the liquor aisle of the supermarket in town, and I saw Boone’s, flavoured fruit wine beverage with sparkles. This has been the “wine” of the poor for many years in Ecuador, where my husband and I currently live. A representative and faux-wine drink for any occasion in many homes. Boone’s is always present on ecuadorians’ table as Wine is in many other cultures, that is real wine of course!.

Anyways, Boone’s when I drank it the first time, I must have been 18 years old, starting college and always on budget, young people would gather together in wherever corner out of the campus, and start collecting change to being able to make it for a bottle or two if the friends group would get bigger than 5. Due to its relatively low alcoholic content: 6.5% ABV (13 proof) it was easy to vanish “a bottle” in one gulp, while typical youngster conversing about grades, loves, and future with the only objective of having a nice time during the after-class on fridays mostly.

I remember it was flavory, and sparky, a precise type of ladies’ drink, since most of the guys would go for the beer anyways. As I enjoyed my memories of Boone’s were pleasant. However many many years after I can not believe that this was in a way my favorite drink in those crazy times. Now it tastes like nothing, and makes me wonder… what did I taste on it that it made me feel good while drinking it….?

I guess the combination of future uncertainty with mostly non-sense type of conversations surrounded by “the friends” to be cool, to be popular, to be someone those times together with the thirsty desire of getting that buzz in oneself’s soul that would give you that courage to ask a guy or girl out or getting a date for saturday’s night big party.

Boone’s is now what it used to be anymore though, or is it that life is not what it used to be anymore?

Have you ever felt that things, places, and even people were so different in a relatively happy past of your life? Weren’t they better and fun in the old times? Is that they have changed for bad? or have you changed for real?

Well, it is something you are acquiring as time passes by, that feeling of better old good times, but what about the new times, new things that makes your life happy now. Why is that?

Boone’s is not making me happy now I must say, their Delicious Apple flavored fruit wine beverage is not tingling my soul like it used to. Has it changed? Have I changed?

Many would agree with me after trying it and many would not, I guess! Its lack of flavor and aromas seem to have been gone with the years, as I try it and keep on trying it, I can’t convince my whole being that this drink gave so many nice feelings which I guess I associated them while drinking it.

Boone’s is actually elaborated and bottled by E&J Gallo Winery in Modesto, California. Here in Ecuador is imported by Quifatex, and sold by any supermarket, liquor store, and convenience store around the country at US$5-6 a very low price relatively speaking comparing with a bottle of nice Chilean wine US$18-35. There are different flavors available but Delicious Apple has always been my favorite… eh not anymore!

As I’m blogging about Boone’s and keep on drinking it to describe as full as possible its characteristics I realize that the bottle is almost empty and I feel those nice memories coming back…..

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Best Hotel Bars in the World

http://www.cnngo.com/explorations/drink/30-worlds-best-hotel-bars-932023?hpt=C2

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Drambuie, more than a Liqueur

Writing about the most popular Liqueurs in Scotland, I found out Drambuie, which I’ve also tried on the rocks. I find it exquisite, the best way to enjoy Whisky in an aromatic, spiced blend. Read more about it here: http://www.cocktailsoftheworld.com/drinks-of-the-world/in-europe/scotland/scottish-liqueurs/drambuie.html

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Got Beer?

In need of a Scottish hand here. Tell me what’s your favorite Beer???

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Drunk Stories

I just found out this website about very embarrassing moments, which are side effects having had too much!

http://www.united-nations-of-beer.com/drinking-stories.html

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Tinto, a word with two meanings in South America

This is a funny story that my uncle Marcelo told me not too long ago. We were having a conversation about our traveling adventures and different types of drinking cultures around the world. He was a business man in his good old times, hence he used to travel a lot for rather short periods of time. One day he was in Ecuador drinking his morning black coffee called in good ecuadorian spanish “tinto”, the next day he was in Argentina in one of the fanciest hotels in the country getting ready to start his day. It is 7 am in the morning and he goes to the hotel restaurant, he asked for a “tinto”,, a good-looking tall waiter finds himself in doubt and asked again -a “tinto” you said?. My uncle confirms the order, not even suspecting of his big language mistake. -Yes, a tinto I said.- He replied in an arrogant tone, since he thought the waiter was deaf or stupid. The waiter looks at him wondering but afraid of asking again, he goes to the kitchen and brings what in Argentina they call “tinto”: a big bottle of their best Red Wine with a glass. He places it over my uncle’s table and said, -here it goes Sir, a tinto. My uncle with wide open eyes realized then this was not what he ordered but embarrassed to make himself  looking like a bigger stupid than he thought the waiter was, he said nothing but thanks and proceeds to drink!  So he starts to drink Red Wine at 7 am before an important meeting that day.

It turns that in South America the word “tinto” have different meanings depending on the country you are asking one for. Tinto or tintico for Colombians and Ecuadorians means “black coffee” or “espresso type”, on the other hand in Argentina and probably in Chile “tinto” means nothing else than Red Wine. So watch out next time and use the universal word “Café” or “coffee” if you don’t want to end up drunk before the most important business meeting of your life!

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Many, many websites about cocktails

There are many, many websites about cocktails but none of them like mine. :)

Cocktails of the World is about drinks that were and are created in every country around the world. Bizarre, traditional, classic combinations of creativity and the people’s favorite spirit or liqueur. Do you want to have an international party at home? click now on http://www.cocktailsoftheworld.com and find out the many, many cocktail recipes from around the world.

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