Best of 2017

With Mrs. Sip pregnant and nursing a baby throughout this year, many of the usual suspects to pop up on my annual “Best Of” list were not attended in 2017. Yes, the Sip Advisor had to suffer through missing out on the Portland Beer and Wine Fest, Tip N’ Taste, Made with Love and many others. Not one to give up, I soldiered on and found other events to take the place of those occasions. Here are my top 17 nights of 2017:

Rooting for the Home Team

The fuzzy memory nights got off to an early start when I joined a Sip Syndicate member for the Vancouver Canucks-Arizona Coyotes contest on January 4. The tickets were a Secret Santa gift for the Sip Advisor and provided perhaps the closest seats to the ice I’ve ever enjoyed. To mark the occasion, copious beers were consumed, including during a pre-game meal at Devil’s Elbow Ale & Smoke House. Best of all, the Canucks picked up a rare 3-0 win on this evening, including a penalty shot goal.

Surprise, Surprise

One of Mrs. Sip’s last hurrahs before learning she was pregnant was this surprise birthday outing I arranged for her at the Tapped Vancouver beer and wine tasting event. Without her knowledge, I was able to get a number of our friends to also attend and it was fun to have them arrive throughout the evening, as continuous revelations.

Surprise Party Sick

Ode to Scotch

The night after Tapped Vancouver, I was back at it, attending a friend’s annual Whiskey Tasting event. The theme for this year was Scotch’s aged eight years or less, proving that many gems can be found. Going into the evening, I was a little hesitant, as I was going solo, with the one person I knew likely to be very busy throughout the night with hosting duties. Luckily, I got a seat at a great table of strangers, who made the event quite memorable. I was even included in the Robbie Burns addressing of the haggis!

Getting Away

Over the Family Day long weekend, the Sip Syndicate journeyed to Pemberton, BC, for a secluded getaway. The retreat also provided an opportunity to tell some of our closest friends that Mrs. Sip was expecting. With that business out of the way, the rest of the weekend was spent eating, drinking and relaxing. One of the Sip Advisor’s all-time favourite pastimes is hanging out in a hot tub with good beers and that was certainly achieved here.

Viva Las Vegas

The first of two jaunts we took to Las Vegas in 2017 took a bit of a twist when we discovered Mrs. Sip was pregnant after we had already booked our escape to the party capital. Still, we intended to live it up and that was helped by some friends also being in Sin City at the same time. Each day/night featured a different route for fun, from a club experience at XS, to exploring the off-strip craft beer scene into the wee hours of the morning, to relaxing and listening to dueling pianos (a Sip Advisor favourite activity).

Rough and Tumble

Missing out on the Rugby Sevens event in 2016 was something I would regret. I had hoped to make amends in 2017, but missed out on the original batch of tickets released. Thankfully, organizers put another batch out and when a friend informed me of the great news, I acted immediately. The frenetic action of the rugby, along with an eclectic and festive crowd made for an amazing (albeit long) day at BC Place Stadium. My favourite photo from the day shows how much junk piled up throughout the affair.

Rugby Violence

Great Cocktail Reveal

Learning the gender of our little one was a moment I’ll never forget. To do it in style, I suggested Mrs. Sip – who had learned the gender a couple weeks prior – reveal it to me by pouring either a pink or blue cocktail. When the beverage came out pink, we were both thrilled. Having a bulk of our family and friends on hand to share the memory with us made it extra special. For the gathering, I concocted two blue and two pink cocktail recipes, so others could share in the anticipation.

Sweet Returns

Back in Las Vegas for the Easter long weekend, we made sure to blend our favourite spots along the strip, while mixing in some new locales. The highlights of this adventure included a couple shows (Blue Man Group and Cirque du Soleil: Mystère) and a few new bars and eateries. We also squeezed in some pool time, which helped wipe away the winter blues.

Journey on the Seas

In order to highlight as many experiences as possible on this list, I’m lumping our nearly three-week cruise getaway (from Rome to Dubai) together as one entry. Highlights included drinking cocktails in both Rome and Athens; a bucket of beers and other tasty beverages aboard the cruise; the always fun task of finishing all the bottles we accumulate on the last day of the itinerary (this time as a one-man wrecking crew); and enjoying a drink in a mostly dry country.

Comedy Capers

Driving six hours round trip for a comedy show may not be every person’s idea of a good night out, but the Sip Advisor isn’t every person. When I discovered Christopher Titus was performing at the Tacoma Comedy Club and I had a small window in my schedule to actually attend one of the shows, I got down on my knees and begged the Sip Alliance to placate my wishes… nay, my demands. In actuality, everyone was quick to come aboard and we had a fun night out in Tacoma before coming home the next morning.

Short Road Trip.png

Batting Practice

In the spring and summer of 2017, the Sip Advisor joined a baseball/softball team for the first time since I was a wee little sipper. While my skills were certainly lacking, I had a great time meeting new folks. After one set of early morning games, I hosted the team at Ma and Pa Sip’s place for some swimming and drinking. The weather was perfect for such an occasion and I think it helped the team bond even more than we previously had.

Runnin’ Down a Dream

From my earliest days, family road trips featured Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers providing the soundtrack. As a result, I grew up a fan of the band. Getting the opportunity to see them live was amazing and with Petty’s untimely passing just a month and a half later, the experience was all the more significant. I had already planned to see them the next time they rode into town… sadly, this will not be possible.

Baby Shower Beer Garden

When Mrs. Sip and I first conceived the idea of hosting a beer garden for our baby shower, we knew it would be a hit. After all, we wanted to include both our male and female friends and family and what better way to get everyone together than a beer garden. Mrs. Sip and I were taken aback with our guests incredible generosity with gifts. Our little one will be set up for some time to come.

Baseballs and Beers and Boxing

Unfortunately, I had missed our baseball team’s tournament earlier in the year, out of town for a family wedding. To make amends, I tied one on big time for the second competition, downing 10 beers over our five-hour break between games. Thankfully, those brews were of the 4.2% ABV variety. Once our day at the ballpark was finished, a few of us gathered for the Floyd Mayweather-Conor McGregor fight to keep the fun going.

Softball Fun

Brewer’s Row Revisited

Much like last year, our return to Port Moody’s Brewer’s Row was a perfect summer day spent enjoying delicious beer and good company. For those that have never ventured that way, it’s a must. There are four breweries within a five-minute walking distance of each other and they each serve up fine products. This year, we also managed to visit the brand new Mariner Brewing in Coquitlam, as the first stop of our expedition.

Boys Will Be Boys

Bachelor parties/stags can be funny things. You’re often hanging out with a few friends and a number of strangers, perhaps doing a set of activities that normally wouldn’t be in your wheelhouse. But that’s also part of the fun. This day of debauchery included paintball and a Vancouver Whitecaps game, as well as the standard bar and strip club stops. The Sip Advisor drank quite well throughout and can’t wait for the January wedding and round two.

The Greatest Gift

My birthday was set to be an event-filled weekend, full of chicanery. Fate had other plans, however, but I wouldn’t have changed a thing. On the morning of my birthday, I awoke to learn Mrs. Sip was experiencing early labour. The rest of the day was spent awaiting the arrival of Baby Sip, who entered the world at 1:33am the next morning. While I was happy to share my birthday, our little one decided she wanted her own spotlight, making for future birthday weekends to be that much more special!

There you have it folks, the Sip Advisor survived a year without my numero uno drinking buddy. As you can see, while Mrs. Sip was busy doing an awesome job of bringing our daughter into the world, I kept up with my usual antics!

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Sip Trips #105: Went By in a Blur

This past week was incredibly busy for Mrs. Sip and I. So busy, that my head is still spinning… and that’s not from all the booze consumed! Let’s get right down to it…

On Friday, we wrapped up work and immediately hit the road to Tacoma, Washington to watch comedian Christopher Titus perform at the Tacoma Comedy Club. We made it just in time for the 10:30pm show and beers were desperately needed for us weary travellers. Cousin Sip’s husband and I split a couple pitchers of Manny’s Pale Ale from Georgetown Brewing out of Seattle. The show was amazing, as expected. As we waited in line to meet Mr. Titus afterwards, the bar was selling pints of Budweiser for $2 and we figured, “Ah, why the hell not!”

I had also picked up a bomber of Alaskan Brewing Icy Bay IPA at a gas station en route to Tacoma, so that acted as my nightcap before grabbing a few hours of sleep and returning to Vancouver Saturday morning. I wish we didn’t have to rush the stay across the border, but with friends visiting from London, we had to be back for more fun.

morning sunglasses

After meeting up with our guests, the ladies went their way, while the gents searched for craft beer. Our first stop was at Central City’s Vancouver location. There, I paired some Chicken Strips and Fries with the brewery’s Super Stellar IPA, which made for a great combo. For dessert I ordered their Hefeweizen, bringing to mind thoughts of summer, as we wait patiently for the weather to cooperate.

Next up was a short walk to Devil’s Elbow Ale & Smoke House. Here, I was able to try the Britannia Brewing Sirens Chai Saison, which was available as a guest tap. Following that, I had the Howe Sound Jam Session Raspberry Cream Ale, another successful selection. Then, the night took a turn for the extreme with a round of tequila shots.

Feeling suitably buzzed, we rejoined the ladies for dinner at The Keg in Yaletown. Sitting on the restaurant’s rooftop patio, I enjoyed a pair of Caesar Diablo servings, made even better given their $5 daily special pricing.

Drinking Problem

On Monday, Ma Sip met me for lunch at Tap & Barrel in North Vancouver. Unfortunately, I was working, so was not able to imbibe as I usually would when visiting a T&B location. That said, I thoroughly enjoyed my PB&J Burger, which made for a nice substitute to my traditional meal of a PB&J Sandwich during the work week. The burger was messy, but totally worth the experience.

Tuesday, we finally had a meal at the Homer Street Cafe, which is located kitty-corner to my and Mrs. Sip’s humble abode. There to celebrate a friend’s birthday, I ordered their rotisserie quarter chicken meal, which was highlighted by their chicken jus for dipping. To wash it all down, I had a trio of brews, including the Howe Sound Summer Saison, Powell Street Old Jalopy Pale Ale and Storm Black Plague Stout. For a small beer menu, they sure packed some quality selections in.

It should be noted that this week’s wrap up doesn’t even include two games of baseball, Father’s Day celebrations, a trip to the theatre and another meal with our visitors from London. Busy times, for sure.

September 21 – What’s My Name Again?

30 for 30

While the title of today’s post is shared by the popular ESPN sports documentary series, I’m using it to describe 30 great achievements of my 30 years on this planet. This is kind of my bucket list of crossed off items… mission accomplished!

Family and Friends

1: Got Engaged – I’m still surprised she said yes!

2: Got Married – Again, I’m still surprised she said yes… I gave her a year and a half to change her mind!

funny-marriage

3: Was a Best Man – Broski Sip got married in 2010 with me by his side.

4: Planned a Stag Party – Nothing says “I love you, man” than planning the perfect sendoff as your buddy enters married life.

Rites of Passage

5: Earned a Driver’s License – Been on the roads for 14 years now… Mrs. Sip still doesn’t have a full license!

6: Graduated High School – Some people didn’t see that coming!

High School Graduate

7: Earned 4 Diplomas/Degrees/Certificates – I have quite the resume… anyone looking to hire!?

8: No More Picky Eater – Chicken strips and fries are pretty awesome, but lobster and escargot are better.

9: Moved Out – It was hard to leave the amazing home of Ma and Pa Sip, but living with Mrs. Sip has its own benefits!

Travel

10: Travelled to 34 Countries – Mrs. Sip will hit 50 countries before she turns 30, but I think I still made a pretty damn good dent.

11: Stepped foot on 6 Continents – I’m only missing Antarctica, which we hope to get to one day.

12: Lived Abroad – Spent six months living in England and travelling Europe.

studying-abroad

13: Visited the Greatest Cities in the World – From London to St. Petersburg, Sydney to Los Angeles, the resume isn’t full yet, but I’ve been to so many cool places.

Academics

14: Made the Honour Roll – Got my shit together one year and made the honour roll twice… it never happened again.

15: Graduated with Honours – Always knew journalism and I were a match made in heaven!

Professional

16: Became Published – My first article ever (aside from online and school writing) was for B.C. Hockey Now.

17: Covered the Vancouver Canucks (NHL) and B.C. Lions (CFL) – The two biggest sports franchises in Vancouver and I got to watch both for free!

Journalism

18: Worked the 2010 Winter Olympics – NBC Universal Sports hired me for the Games, a goal of mine when I first entered journalism school.

19: Made Money Doing What I Love – Watching sports for a job just doesn’t get much better… perhaps getting paid to have sex!?

20: Started The Sip Advisor – I was thirsty (literally!) for a new project when Mrs. Sip suggested The Sip Advisor. Here we are and I’m pretty sure everyone is having a good time!

Adventure/Crazy

21: Tried a Number of Extreme Sports – Bungy jumping, ziplining, zorbing, luging, surfing, scuba diving… I’ve tried them all!

22: Saw my Favourite Comedians Perform – From Christopher Titus to Daniel Tosh, I’ve seen all of the living comedians I ever wanted to.

23: Won Money in Las Vegas – I’m too cautious to lose or win a lot of money, but I did come home up on one trip and that’s more than a lot of people can say.

Stays in Vegas

24: Won Money at the Races – My last trip to Fraser Downs resulted in six winning bets on nine races, including picking three winners straight up!

25: Hosted an Annual Event – My annual Beer Pong tournament is a highlight of the summer social calendar.

26: Invented a Word – Walk Blocking – like cock blocking, but everyone can do it!

27: Became an Internet Sensation – And the journey has only just begun!

28: Swam Across a Body of Water – I joined Mrs. Sip for a crossing of the water outside our lodge in Indian Arm, B.C. It took us 45 minutes round trip to make the journey.

29: Shot a Gun – Cousin Sip and I hit one of the many ranges in Las Vegas to help cross this off the list.

30: Sang Karaoke – Not well, but Mrs. Sip and I do perform a rocking version of ‘I Hate Everything About You’!

Drink #264: What’s My Name Again?

Sept 21

  • 0.3 oz Spiced Rum (I used Kraken)
  • 0.3 oz Southern Comfort
  • 0.3 oz Peach Schnapps
  • 0.3 oz Goldschlager
  • 0.3 oz Vodka
  • Garnish with a Lemon Slice

There are still so many things left to do (get a tattoo, touch a snake, go skydiving, drink motor oil!) that the next 30 years should be just as adventurous as the first 30. Any suggestions!?

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
This shot finishes Rum Week and the story goes that if you have enough of these, you’ll forget your own name! While it is a rather potent shooter, it’s also very tasty, helped along by the Peach Schnapps, Southern Comfort, and Goldschlager. I’ll have to try their little dare sometime and see how long it takes for the ol’ mind to go blank! Let’s drink to my successes and excesses!

September 6 – Wonderful Night

Time of Your Life

“Mr. Sip Advisor, this is your life!”… that’s how the show detailing some of my greatest triumphs would start. Every day is amazing for me, but some reach a level of infamy that leave it permanently burned into my brain. Good thing, too, cause with all the alcohol… wait, what were we talking about? You may quickly notice a trend in that my relationship with Mrs. Sip factors into a lot of these tales, but that shouldn’t be a surprise to any of you little sippers. Here are a few of the greatest days of my life:

Wedding Day – August 25, 2012

Well, this one was an obvious choice. I’m not one to hog attention or anything like that, but on your wedding day, everyone is there for YOU. Thankfully, the bride gets more attention than the groom (which allows the groom to more easily sneak out and enjoy some beers in the parking lot with his groomsmen). Our wedding was amazing, complete with wonderful weather, touching speeches, amazing food, a wonderful candy buffet, a rocking live band (Vancouver’s Bobcats), and fantastic drinks to boot. You plan so diligently for one day and then it’s gone. Happily, everything went according to plan and I wouldn’t change a thing.

wedding-cost

Engagement – December 25, 2010

Backtracking a little, as we approached Christmas Day 2010, Mrs. Sip had no clue what was about to happen to her life. Perhaps if she did know, we wouldn’t have both got sick and spent Christmas Eve bundled up and passing out to Neo-Citron servings, all while watching the god-awful Babes in Toyland. It was our first Christmas living together and I wanted to make it especially memorable. I’d had the ring since September and was able to keep the whole thing a secret from everyone except my future father-in-law. Christmas Day finally arrived and I popped the question. Thankfully, Mrs. Sip didn’t hesitate in saying yes. That day, we were able to announce to both our families that we were now engaged… well, I had to do all that work, as Mrs. Sip completely lost her voice in all the excitement!

Christopher Titus Show – April 12, 2013

Taking a brief break from relationship milestones, we have this wonderful day in Sip history, which I have this site to thank for the entire experience, as I checked Titus’ tour schedule while researching an article and discovered he would be in Tacoma, WA at the Tacoma Comedy Club. Mrs. Sip, always up for a wild time, instantly said yes to going and we booked our tickets. Dinner at Red Lobster and my first BevMo visit were precursors to a fantastic night of comedy. Titus did over an hour of work, followed by a half-hour long encore, and even met with audience members afterwards. Following the show, still buzzing from what a great night it had been (and the great drinks that the Club makes), Mrs. Sip and I cracked a bottle of wine at 2:30 am. I was up until 4am thinking about everything good in life before finishing the last drops and finally getting some rest.

First Bungee Jump – December 2, 2008

Any day that starts with McDonald’s is a good one in my books, but all the things that followed made it truly amazing! After a lunch that included a treasure childhood treat in shaker fries, Mrs. Sip and I made our way to the Taupo Bungy location. I was a little nervous the entire walk there, but there was no way I was going to back out. I’d wanted to do this for years. After signing away my life, I was strapped into the jumping gear and led out onto a platform high above the water below. Looking down, I couldn’t believe I was about to leap into thin air and before I knew it, I was hurdling through the sky. All that excitement was followed by a trip to a hot spring with beers in hand, as we drank the night away!

Asking Mrs. Sip Out – March 22, 2002

Of course, anytime in Disneyland – the happiest place on earth, you know – is special, but the energy level is heightened even more when you’re pursuing a lovely girl, with the hopes of busting out of your shy shell and asking her out on a date. Cousin Sip was playing matchmaker and things were going well in the couple evenings we were able to all hang out together. I had long thought about the perfect way of completing my task, but I never figured things would come together as perfectly as they did.There we stood, in front of the famous Cinderella Castle, the nightly firework show illuminating the sky and I turned to her and popped the question. She said yes… how could she not at least give me a chance with this scenario playing out!? The asking was done. Now I just needed to win her heart.

Asking Out

First Date with Mrs. Sip – March 30, 2002

One week after asking the gorgeous and talented future Mrs. Sip out, we went on our first true date. We had had a couple really good phone conversations in the days leading up to our rendezvous and I think we were both hoping it would go as well as our non-face-to-face meetings. The night started with me picking Mrs. Sip up and heading to the local theatre where we watched Panic Room. Following that, it was time to satiate the ol’ sweet tooth (and I don’t mean on Mrs. Sip), so we were off to find dessert. We shared a hot fudge brownie and talked until they closed the restaurant. I knew things were going well when she agreed to come back to my place to continue talking. I finally dropped her off at home around 2am with plans to reconvene in a couple days… she was mine!

Drink #249: Wonderful Night

Wonderful Night Drink

  • 0.3 oz Peppermint Schnapps
  • 0.3 oz Gin
  • 0.3 oz Vodka
  • 0.3 oz Galliano
  • 0.3 oz Blue Curacao
  • Top with Apple-Lime Juice
  • Garnish with an Apple Pick and Lime Wheel

I think everyone should do an exercise like this to truly help you feel special. It’s been said so many times that it starts to lose meaning, but we really need to embrace each day we have and make the best of our lives. I like to think, thanks to the evidence above, that I’ve done exactly that!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (5 Sips out of 5):
Perhaps this cocktail benefits from low expectations, thus resulting in its high score, but it is delicious. Mrs. Sip didn’t agree with my assessment, but that’s why she’s only Mrs. Sip and not the Sip Advisor. The Peppermint Schnapps is actually really nice with all the other spirits playing their own role. Definitely give this one a whirl!

May 16 – Greenback

Drinking Bad

We recently faced a conundrum here at the Sip Advisor headquarters: do we feature a bad drink? I work diligently to select drinks that I hope at least one sect of my fan base will enjoy and I think to this point, I’ve done a good job of making decent cocktails for all you little sippers. Heck, we made it to May before we had to address this issue.

I’m not perfect, but I’m pretty close. Every drink I’ve made thus far has received a passing grade (although the Flatliner was close to having to attend summer school).

That is, until I tried making the Greenback. At first glance of the name, I figured I could write about money and how I don’t understand so much financial mumbo jumbo. After one sip of this vile substance, I learned two things: bad cocktails are my kryptonite and I’d be crafting a post about when recipes go bad.

Bacon is my kryptonite too... just in a good way!

Bacon is my kryptonite too… just in a good way!

I had never tried Crème de Menthe, but I’ve seen it featured in a ton of recipes, especially ones to do with Gin, so I figured this was a tried, tested and proven drink. If it is tried and tested, those brave souls are surely dumb, deaf, and blind from the experience.

This concoction is gross. I’m not sure I’ve had anything quite so disgusting and we’re talking about a guy who would make some Fear Factor winners blush with the list of things I’m willing to try.

Unfortunately, not every drink that has a published recipe means that it is good (or at the very least drinkable). A lot of human error went into this mix and I’d love to meet whoever first invented it so that I could shake his hand… [Wait, remember Sip Advisor, you hated this drink]… Let’s try that again, using comedian Christopher Titus’ proposed Control-Z machine, which takes us back exactly 12 seconds into the past: so that I could stomp on his foot, forever sullying his pristine white shoelaces and while he’s looking down stunned, I would deliver the world’s greatest flying knee lift, ala Brutus ‘The Barber’ Beefcake.

Control Z

Would I be arrested on the spot, of course, but it would all be worth it to exact a small degree of revenge against this perpetrator. Plus, once I explained myself to the judge, she would surely let me off with a slap on the wrist and a “boys will be boys” chuckle. Plus, what she doesn’t know, is that I kind of enjoy a little light wrist slapping.

This cocktail made me question whether I deserved the title of Sip Advisor. In a moment of total anxiety I burned all the merchandise concepts we eventually plan on rolling out through the site. I took my entire bar collection and threw it off our balcony. I even took my precious muddler and tried to flush it down the toilet.

In the fetal position and with a flooding bathroom, Mrs. Sip tried to calm me down and restore my usual swagger. She reasoned that this is exactly what a Sip Advisor does. Tries the good and bad and lets the world know which is which (she may have even pointed out that the tagline of this site is in fact “The Good, The Bad, and The Bubbly”). She was right, I do look good naked (my mind always drifts off eventually).

So, I know with this cocktail, you readers no longer view me as a hero. I will settle for being a nearly flawless individual who is responsible for so much good on this earth that it’s hard to fathom I’m merely mortal.

Drink #136: Greenback

May 16 Greenback

I don’t even know why I’ve included the recipe. It should be scorched from the earth. If you do decide to take your life into your own hands and attempt making and consuming this drink, the risk is all on you. The Sip Advisor cautions that this beverage contains scenes of violence and coarse language (usually known as the good stuff, but not in this case). Viewer’s digestion is advised. On second thought, don’t worry about the coarse language because this drink is worse than having soap in your mouth!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (1 Sips out of 5):
And that score is generous. This awful mess is basically a mouthwash – you spit and don’t swallow. And it does, in fact, taste exactly as if you are drinking mouthwash (I went and had some Listerine after to compare). I feel I’m being too generous with giving it any score at all. Yuck!

May 5 – Laugh-A-Minute

Laugh Your Ass Off

It’s World Laughter Day and Cinco de Mayo – two great reasons to celebrate! Today seems like a good time to discuss my favourite comedians. These guys have been making me laugh for years and deserve all the praise I can give them.

Christopher Titus

There is only one word to describe Christopher Titus: deranged… well, that or genius! Both really do fit and form the basis of his comedic style. Titus largely uses his own personal experiences in his act: growing up with a strict, alcoholic single father and split family; bad relationships throughout his adulthood; and the notion that in today’s society, to be dysfunctional is normal and the majority.

Christopher Titus

Lewis Black

The Daily Show correspondent and ranter extraordinaire, Lewis Black, is as funny as he is gruff. His wildness seems to go against the grain of being dressed in a suit and tie, but he makes it all work. There is a nervous energy to Black’s act that keep you totally invested in what he’s saying and trying to figure out which direction he’ll head in next.

Ron White

I love Ron White’s style. He spends most of his set chain smoking and drinking what appears to be scotch or whiskey. After that, ‘Tater Salad’s’ comedy is pretty damn good, too. He is my favourite member of the Blue Collar troupe and his dry, southern style will have you rolling with laughter. He has definitely had some wild times and the stories of his various arrests are a highlight of his act.

Ron White

Carrot Top

As I’ve written before, Carrot Top’s energy during his performance is astonishing. I’m not sure how many energy drinks he has to down to get to that level, but I appreciate his efforts (and sacrifice). Prop comedy is sometimes frowned upon by purists, but Carrot Top deserves a ton of credit for constantly adapting his act and finding new materials to suit his needs.

Russell Peters

Throwing some Canadian content on the list (although I maintain that we are one of the funniest country’s in the world and have an amazing profile of talented comedians), Russell Peters has turned his “rip on my dad” act into a worldwide sensation. Somebody’s gonna get a hurt!

russell peters

Emo Philips

The bizarre style of Emo Philips’ comedy isn’t for everyone. Just when you think his joke is going in one direction, Philips completely psyches you out and turns the entire joke upside down. With his odd sense of humor, he can seem quite loveable… just beware of his wild side.

Daniel Tosh

There is no subject that Daniel Tosh won’t rip on. He’s been accused of being racist, sexist, misogynistic, you name it. The only thing I’ve ever indicted him for is being hilarious. When not touring North America, performing his stand-up material, you can see Tosh hosting his Comedy Central smash hit Tosh.0, where he lampoons online videos and social media sites, such as Facebook and Twitter.

Drink #125: Laugh-A-Minute

May 5 Laugh-A-Minute

  • 1 oz Cherry Vodka (I used Grey Goose Cherry Noir)
  • 1 oz Sweet Vermouth
  • 0.5 oz Amaretto
  • Top with Lemonade
  • Garnish with Lemon Wedge and Maraschino Cherry

Amazingly (and feeling truly blessed), I’ve been able to see each of these performers live in various parts of North America. Some comics on my “must see” list include Steven Wright, Patton Oswalt, Dave Chappelle, and Louis C.K.

This blog post does not feature comedians who have gone to the great stage in the sky, like George Carlin, Richard Pryor, Rodney Dangerfield, Mitch Hedberg, and Greg Giraldo.

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4.5 Sips out of 5):
You’re always doubtful about the varying quality of liquors until you have something as special as Grey Goose Vodka. The Cherry Noir variety was delicious, with almost a hint sour cherry flavour. Throw in Amaretto and you have one of my longtime preferred spirits being paired with one of my new loves.

February 7 – Lynchburg Lemonade

TV Injustice

It’s amazing with all the trash that airs on TV nowadays that some spectacular shows were never given a fair run and cancelled before they had a chance to gain an audience. Tonight, one of Mr. and Mrs. Sip’s favourite shows returns, as Community comes back to the airwaves with an abbreviated, delayed and, in all likelihood, fourth and final season. It’s really too bad Community was never given a fair shake, as it has a loyal following, but just can’t seem to gain ground in the mainstream. Here are some other shows that were treated poorly and unjustifiably lynched.

Community Superheros

Boomtown

Running for only 24 amazing episodes, this drama was critically acclaimed, but the audience just didn’t pick it up. The series featured stories told through the point-of-view of the various characters (beat cops, detectives, paramedic, reporter, district attorney, etc.) and that’s where they went wrong. The viewing audience just couldn’t handle having to put together a story by themselves (why do you think jigsaw puzzles have seen a drastic drop in sales in recent times? Okay I don’t know that for a fact, but I assume so since we’re all become brain dead from watching too much Real Houswives of Minnesota or some such crap). Instead audiences rather be spoon-fed their CSI Miami, CSI Las Vegas, and CSI Neptune formula crime dramas. (Note: it’s too bad CSI doesn’t take place on Neptune, at least it would explain why they are always looking for clues in the dark)

Arrested Development

Its original run lasted only three seasons, with a rushed 13-episode final season, in order to wrap up as many storylines as the writers possibly could. Nearly seven years later, the series is returning to the screen with a run of 14 shows, to be followed by a feature-length movie. Arrested Development is the kind of show when each time you watch it, you notice new things and you have to really pay attention to catch all the jokes… that’s exactly why it didn’t work for most audience members who would rather watch a bunch of losers with no personality or apparently dating skills, chase an attractive, but equally uninteresting woman on reality shows like The Bachelorette. Mr. Sip was once a contestant, by the way… I’m still a little bitter after being kicked off on the first episode of my season!

Arrested Development

Firefly

I am not a big Sci-Fi fan, but even I have to admit that this show was wonderful and deserved much more than the 14 episodes it was originally allowed to air. The Fox network bungled this one pretty bad, placing the show on Friday nights and advertising it as a comedy. Sure, there’s a lot of humour in the show, but drama and action were also integral parts of the series. Fan demand (or in this case nerd demand… respect them, when they make rare appearances in public, they come out in large numbers… just look at any Comic-Con event!) was so high for the show – with many people discovering it long after it had been cancelled – that a feature film was made, 2005’s Serenity.

Titus

For those that have never watched this show, I urge you to search it out and enjoy every moment of it. Starring brilliant stand-up comedian Christopher Titus, the show takes a sharp look at the dysfunctional family, which as Titus proudly states has now become the majority in North America. What is so special about white picket fences, anyway? Titus was one of many gems Fox dropped in favour of its rotating door of failures. (See Arrested Development and Firefly above, as well as Family Guy, Married with Children, etc.) I guess they also need space in their schedule for more American Idol audition broadcasts.

Titus

Deadwood

The fact that what would turn out to be the conclusion of this series was so anti-climactic still bothers me to this day. Of course, the producers didn’t know they wouldn’t be renewed for a fourth season and thought they had time to finish the story. I hate it when networks don’t let a show close out its storylines. They might as well be flipping all of their viewers over for a probing. I get it, production costs on a period piece are astronomical, but shouldn’t you know that when you get into that business? I kind of wish Al Swearengen had the chance to let loose on one of his obscenity-laced tirades against the HBO team that killed this fine show. Awesomely, the F-word was used nearly 3,000 times during the shows run of 36 episodes.

Drink #38: Lynchburg Lemonade

Lynchburg Lemonade drink recipe

  • 1 oz Whiskey
  • 1 oz Triple Sec (I used Cointreau)
  • 1 oz Sweet & Sour Mix
  • Top with lemon-lime soda
  • Garnish with lemon wedge

I implore all my little sippers to enjoy the 13-episode offering of Community we will get this season. If you’ve never seen the show before, do whatever you can to get caught up. Illegally download it, steal the DVD’s from your local entertainment store… hell, hack into the NBC network if you have to …I mean er, go buy the DVD boxset as The Sip Advisor does not endorse or promote the illegal downloading or pirating of copyright material (PS: Do video stores even exist anymore?). Trust me though, (and I know you do), watch Community, it’s worth it!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
A great drink. I like sour and fizzy and this cocktail had that in spades. I don’t know if anyone playing at home noticed, but that’s a McDonald’s straw garnishing the drink with its yellow stripe. Thanks, Ronald!