December 3 – Chocolate Peppermintini

Christmas Classics

Especially given it’s the winter months and the weather outside is frightful, it’s nice to snuggle up and watch a bevy of classic Christmas films. What should you include in your movie marathon? Ask and you shall receive. Here are my favourite Christmas flicks!

It’s a Wonderful Life

I absolutely adore this classic. And when you think about it, many of us might have never viewed the tale that has been copied and parodied so many times. It was never intended to be a “Christmas movie”, but that’s what it became. Jimmy Stewart is amazing throughout the movie (no surprise there, as the dude is actually an American hero) and his portrayal of George Bailey, who is too often in the wrong place at the wrong time, is one of the most treasured characters in cinema history.

Elf

The story of Buddy the Elf (Will Ferrell at his usual level of crazy!) searching out his father and integrating into the fast-paced world of New York City is a fun movie to get into the swing of things during the holidays. Buddy has to work hard to get the hardened folks of New York City, as well as the rest of the world to find their Christmas spirit, which powers Santa’s sleigh, of course. The film, which has material both kids and parents alike can enjoy, has even led to a Broadway musical.

Bad Santa

If you’ve been following this site for any period of time, you knew that a raunchier film was going to come up at some point… here it is! Billy Bob Thornton plays Willie T. Stokes, an alcoholic womanizer who roams from town to town as a mall Santa, staking out his place of occupation in order to rob the store before moving on to the next score. Things are different this time when he falls for a woman and a loner kid and decides to eventually change his ways.

A Christmas Carol/Scrooge

It’s hard to pick a version that is best to view, but my favourites include The Muppet version (no surprise there) and probably the edition with Alastair Sim playing the cranky curmudgeon. Like It’s a Wonderful Life, this is another Christmas tale that has been parodied constantly, as Ebenezer Scrooge is visited by the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future, warning him that if he doesn’t change his ways, many will be affected and no one will care when his time on the earth is done.

Scrooge

Home Alone

While I’d caution folks who wish to view any of the movies past Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, the first two entries are cinematic gems. As a kid, you only wanted to see the last segments of the films, where plucky Kevin McCallister sends burglars Harry and Marv (The Wet Bandits) through his nightmarish house of horrors, but with age and wisdom, I’ve come to realize the movies are much more than that. They include a lot of wonderful Christmas imagery and are perfect holiday romps.

A Christmas Story

This movie is a family favourite around the Sip Advisor offices. The story sees young Ralphie embark on a quest to receive a Red Ryder BB Gun for Christmas. He runs into obstacles at every corner from his teacher giving him a poor grade on his essay on what he wants for Christmas to Santa Claus himself (a mall Santa that is) telling him he’ll shoot his eye out… and he nearly does in the end. TV network TBS has been known to broadcast the movie in a 24-hour cycle on Christmas day, so if you haven’t seen it yet, shame on you!

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

What a treasure this movie is. From Cousin Eddie’s antics to the misadventures of the hapless Clark Griswold, there are so many laughs in this film. Clark is looking to provide his family the perfect Christmas experience, much like the ones he enjoyed as a youngster. That all goes awry as the holiday becomes more of a nightmare with each incident, underscored by Clark’s uncertainty of whether his Christmas bonus will arrive and allow him to build a swimming pool for his clan.

shitter-was-full

How the Grinch Stole Christmas

Some people crap on this flick, but I think it’s quite enjoyable. Thanks to the longer running time, not afforded to the cartoon special classic, we get a better understanding of why the Grinch hates Christmas and all the Who’s down in Whoville. Jim Carrey was the perfect choice to play the ‘mean one’ whose heart grew three times that day. This movie ushered in the chain of Dr. Suess stories to be adapted for feature films; some good, some bad… this is one of the good ones.

Die Hard & Die Hard 2: Die Harder

I’m a little disappointed that this series abandoned the Christmas time setting after the first two releases. This is for the action fan out there that wants only a sprinkle of the Christmas spirit in their movies. The first film begins with an office Christmas party that is invaded by terrorists while the sequel is set in an airport, as hero John McClane is waiting for his wife to arrive home for the holidays. Both movies are filled with shootouts, creative kills, and catchphrases galore!

Love, Actually

If you’re looking for a little more romance with your Christmas movie fare, give this film a try. It’s one of those “separate stories that all come together at the end” ensemble cast dealies, but it’s very good… even if Hugh Grant is a featured actor… a Prime Minister, no less. Set in Britain during the lead up to Christmas, the film sets out to prove that “Love, actually is all around us” and they hit the nail on the head through the interweaving narratives.

Drink #337: Chocolate Peppermintini

Chocolate Pepperminti Drink Recipe

  • Rim glass with Christmas Sprinkles
  • 1.5 oz Vodka (I used Smores)
  • 1 oz Peppermint Schnapps
  • 0.5 oz Crème de Cacao
  • 0.5 oz Chocolate Liqueur
  • Top with Milk

What are your favourite Christmas movie viewings? I’m always looking to add to my annual “To Watch” list, so send those ideas in!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3 Sips out of 5):
While not a bad drink, Mrs. Sip didn’t like how sweet it was. I enjoyed its booziness and flavours (I mean, who doesn’t like chocolate and mint together!), although using the Smores Vodka might have altered the taste and a plain Vodka may have been bettered suited for the recipe.

March 18 – Lush

Drunk-a-lunks 

A couple months ago, we shared a few laughs looking at some alcohol lightweights. Today, we look at their opposites, the folks who can really throw the drink back and give a new meaning to the term booze hound. Ah, my idols!

Roger Smith – American Dad

There are very few scenes of American Dad where Roger isn’t drunk, drinking or talking about getting soused. He’s been known to spend a majority of the Christmas season out of his gourd on eggnog and has even gone into the moonshine business, showing his passion for sweet lady liqour and all that she can provide mankind.

Intoxi-quoted: “Pardon me, sir. I’m what you might call an advanced drinker, and I’ve been having a Dickens of a time concocting an eggnog that provides the certain… heady tingle that I require.”

Roger Drunk

Homer Simpson & Barney Gumble – The Simpsons

While both men have struggled with their alcohol needs over the series’ many years, Barney seems to have finally strapped himself onto the sober wagon but I don’t think Homer ever will… he’s just too funny when he’s blitzed. Ironically, Homer is the one who gave Barney his first beer… the night before Barney’s SAT exam that he was set to ace.

Intoxi-quoted: Homer: “Wow, Barney. You brought a whole beer keg.” Barney: “Yeah… where do I fill it up?”

Cheers Gang – Cheers

While you don’t often see the guys from Cheers getting drunk per se, given the number of hours they spend at the bar each day, you’d have to assume that they’re often going home substantially liquored up. Heck, it’s the only way Norm Peterson will go home to his never-seen wife, Vera.

Intoxi-quoted: Woody Boyd: “Hey Mr. Peterson. Jack Frost nipping at your nose?” Norm Peterson: “Yeah. Now let’s get Joe Beer nipping at my liver.”

Willie – Bad Santa

Willie is a stinking drunk and he knows it. He has no interest in turning his life around and wants nothing more than his next big score (usually from robbing whichever department store he’s worked at during the Christmas season) before moving onto the next target. If I was ever a mall Santa, you can bet I’d show up to work looking as disheveled as this naughty Claus.

Intoxi-quoted: Sue: “I’ve always had a thing for Santa Claus. In case you didn’t notice. It’s like some deep-seeded childhood thing.” Willie: “So is my thing for tits.”

Bad Santa Drunk

Bender Rodriguez – Futurama

Bender is not really an alcoholic, but he needs to drink alcohol to keep his mechanics running… so, he drinks a LOT! He even fermented his own brew inside of himself, treating the mix as if it were his own unborn child. Now that’s true love and devotion.

Intoxi-quoted: “I’m gonna drink ’til I reboot!”

Lucille Bluth – Arrested Development

The matriarch of the Bluth clan, Lucille lives a life of luxury (despite the fact she can no longer afford it) and what better to do than get drunk off your ass on a daily basis. Her kids have grown up – although Buster, in his late 30’s, has yet to leave home – and she doesn’t have to (or want to) work, so the only way to pass the time is with a delicious cocktail.

Intoxi-quoted: Lucille Bluth: “Get me a vodka rocks.” Michael: “Mom, it’s breakfast.” Lucille: “And a piece of toast.”

Peter Griffin – Family Guy

When Peter and the guys hit the Drunken Clam, someone, if not all of them, are bound to go home plastered. Peter’s drinking has got him into a lot of trouble over time, including multiple arrests, issues with his wife, near-death experiences and the killing of nearly every brain cell he ever had… and he didn’t start off with many to begin with.

Intoxi-quoted: “C’mon, let’s go drink ’til we can’t feel feelings anymore.”

Drink #77: Lush

Lush Cocktail

  • 1 oz Vodka
  • 0.5 oz Melon Liqueur
  • 0.5 oz Peach Schnapps
  • Top with Apple-Lime Juice
  • Garnish with Lime Wedge and Apple Wedge

Mrs. Sip often calls me a drunk-a-lunk when I’m hitting the bottle with awesome passion and force. So, here are some departing words from yours truly: “When you wake up after a hard night of drinking and you’re worried about your liquor supply, just remember that even potatoes can be turned into vodka!”

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4.5 Sips out of 5):
I thoroughly enjoyed this cocktail. From the usually solid Melon Liqueur to the delicious Apple-Lime Juice, I was very happy that a recipe I thought would be awesome actually turned out that way. It also looked great, completing the package.