May 14 – Time for a Change?

Politically Declined

To sum up quickly, I hate elections, politicians and basically everything having to do with the political process.

I feel that government doesn’t do very much, what it does accomplish takes way too long to get done, and when it finally gets done, then we go and repeal it anyway. I would never trust a politician further than I could throw them… unless it was hilariously off a cliff Wile E. Coyote style!

swanson-govt

Elections are the worst time of the year. Our news is inundated with one group of politicians going on about stupid things other politicians have done such as riding transit without a ticket or running a red light while taking their son to an early morning hockey practice, all presumably in an attempt to sway voters who won’t bother to actually look up the various parties’ platforms. With a multitude of rainbow signs going up everywhere you look and TV commercials interrupting my programming, I just want to take a three-month nap and avoid the whole scenario. And don’t even get me started on the annoying phone calls and pamphlets.

Perhaps if elections were solved with cage fights, I might be a little more interested. Think about it, you could have a stacked card of death matches and charge people to come and see who “wins” the battle. And all the proceeds would go to fund the “elected” government’s initiatives and programs.

If you look through the history of the world, every important issue has been settled at WrestleMania, so why not continue down this path in the political forum?

Sadly, this is not to be, but it’s something for future generations to keep in mind. Maybe when the polar ice caps eventually melt and we go into a state of martial law, we can revisit my proposal.

politicians

I took a political science course once and I couldn’t stand it. Every class, when the teacher looked like he was wrapping things up and was going to let us free a little earlier, there would always be one jackass who would keep asking questions – queries of a political nature, but having nothing to do with our current lesson – until before you knew it, we had actually run over the class time and would now be fighting each other to exit, Battle Royal style, in order to get to the parking lot.

All that said, today I have to go stand in line to execute my “right” as a free democratic being who enjoys the benefits of not living in a dictatorship, I guess.

dictator

Although, this guy looks like he knows how to party!

Mrs. Sip insists that I vote, even threatening to withhold potato chips and cookies from me. What she doesn’t know is that as soon as I enter the private voting booth, I promptly check off the candidate she dislikes the most, file my ballot, and call it a day!

Drink #134: Time for a Change?

Time For a Change Cocktail

  • Rim glass with Sugar
  • 1.5 oz Black Cherry Bourbon
  • 0.5 oz Cointreau
  • Splash of Lemon Juice
  • Splash of Wildberry Juice
  • Dash of Orange Bitters

Is it really time for a change? I say, who cares. It’s usually not too long before we hate the dude or dudette we all elected. People say if you don’t vote, you have no right to complain about what happens. And really, that’s the only reason the Sip Advisor goes to the polls every year!

elections-candidate

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
This is quite the cocktail to undertake. Sadly, I had to leave the lavender portion of the recipe out, but it wasn’t missed too much. I really enjoy any drink that contains Black Cherry Bourbon and this was no exception. I found it really hard to pick an election-themed cocktail, as most were American-related and well, that’s not where I live. I still love the drink name Obama Slammer, though.

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January 3 – Manhattan

The Rat Pack enjoy a drink and a laugh together.

The Rat Pack enjoy a drink and a laugh together. Not a rare sight.

The Manhattan is one of my favourite cocktails. It makes me think about the glory days of The Rat Pack – it was among their preferred drink of choice, after all – and the sort of Golden Age they lived through. Back when you had to have some level of talent to be a star, instead of a boob job, hit YouTube video or trashy reality show. A time of fedora hats, pin-striped suits and crazy, yet mysteriously classy parties. I love the stories of Frank, Dean, Sammy and the gang working long hours filming their movies and partying through the night before heading back to work the next day. These guys oozed swagger and machismo and made it look easy. If these originators of cool loved the Manhattan, that’s good enough for me.

Near the top on my growing bucket list, liquor edition, is have a Manhattan, while in Manhattan. If I happen to be donning a fedora and be decked out in a pin-striped suit, that would be the icing on the cake. Not that I’m saying that I own a fedora and pin-striped suit (but I do). I like to think that I’d be making the boys proud.

The Manhattan recipe is fairly simple, but one of the beauties of it is the interchangeable parts. I like trying different whiskies and bourbons to achieve a different taste. Some of my preferred alcohols to use include Jim Beam Black Cherry Bourbon (suggested to me by an instructor at Fine Art Bartending), Jack Daniel’s Honey Whiskey (suggested by me to that very same instructor) and for the Canadian in all of us, Crown Royal. The Sweet Vermouth can also be subbed out for a variety of different results. Dry Vermouth can be used instead, as can other liqueurs like Maraschino Cherry flavoured, Grand Marnier and many other options. Be playful with your own recipe and see what you come up with.

There are two ways that I like to present the Manhattan. The first is in a martini glass (the traditional way) and the second is on ice in a rocks glass. Both drinks use the same proportions, with the only difference being that for the Manhattan martini, you stir (don’t shake) all the ingredients with ice and strain from a mixer. Both drinks I’ve garnished with a Maraschino cherry, although the cherry in the martini glass just sunk to the bottom to make nice bourbon-soaked treat waiting for you at the finish line!

Drink #3: The Manhattan

Manhattan Cocktail

  • 3 oz Whiskey or Bourbon of your choice (I used Jim Beam Black Cherry Bourbon)
  • 2 oz Sweet Vemouth
  • Dashes of Angostura Bitters
  • Garnish with a Maraschino Cherry

Let me know if you have any whiskey suggestions or any other tweaks to the Manhattan recipe. Thanks for reading and enjoy!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
I love Manhattans so much that I made two different versions! I’ve always been more of an ‘on the rocks’ type guy, but the Martini version of the cocktail was good, too. I have to give a super thumbs up to my decision to use Black Cherry Bourbon in these recipes and suggest you do, as well.