April 26 – Golden Dragon

Dragon’s Den

While preparing for our Around the World stop in China, I had originally intended to do an article on dragons, which are an integral part of Chinese culture, mythology, and folklore. China is not alone, however, with having dragons as part of their legends, so I switched this post over to a Super Saturday Shot Day article and now we can have some real fun. Here are the top five dragons in media:

#5: Maleficent – Sleeping Beauty

How cool would it be to have the power to turn into a dragon? For the wicked fairy Maleficent, this ability comes out as she tries to keep Prince Phillip from rescuing Princess Aurora. Even the name Maleficent is finely-crafted as it translates into “doing evil or harm”. The soon-to-be-released live action film Maleficent should be an interesting twist on the Sleeping Beauty fable, as we gain some perspective into the antagonist and get her point of view. Sadly, Angelina Jolie plays the titular (literally!?) role, but I’ll have to make peace with that.

Maleficent Dragon

#4: Ricky ‘The Dragon’ Steamboat

One of the most athletically-gifted wrestlers of all-time, Ricky Steamboat is a former NWA World Champion (a pretty big deal for you non-grappling fans) and his series of matches with the incomparable Ric Flair are considered legendary. Nicknamed ‘The Dragon’, while he was with the WWE during their cartoon gimmick era of the early 90’s, Steamboat even came to the ring breathing fire high into the air and wearing an outfit with fake scales. Sadly, his career was cut short due to a serious back injury in 1994, depriving fans of many more classic confrontations.

#3: Drogon, Viserion, and Rhaegal – Game of Thrones

While these dragons have already played an important role in the Game of Thrones saga, you just know that they will eventually become a focal point of the book and its TV series sibling. The dragons made Daenerys Targaryen a serious contender in the realm and helped her shed the misconceptions that she didn’t belong on the throne. Drogon, Viserion, and Rhaegal (I always love how fantasy novels come up with names) will continue to grow and intimidate. I doubt, however that all three make it through the series unscathed and there is likely some tragedy ahead for the ‘Mother of Dragons’.

Mother of Dragons

#2: Mushu – Mulan

Returning to the Disney vault, we get Mushu, an under-sized serpent and protector of Mulan as she joins the fight against the Hun army. While Mushu is a decent sidekick to Mulan, my favourite appearance of the dragon is at the Disney Animation Studio attraction at Disney Parks, where he co-hosts the Drawn to Animation demonstration. I find it ironic that Eddie Murphy played this little firecracker of a dragon, then fell in love with a dragon as Donkey in Shrek. The guy must have a thing for the mythical beasts!

#1: Toothless – How to Train Your Dragon

It’s unbelievable how much Toothless reminds me of one of Ma and Pa Sip’s cats. Yes, an animated dragon reminds me of a living cat… I’m special like that! Anyway, young Viking Hiccup finds Toothless one day and over time, the two become friends and partners as Hiccup trains Toothless to work with him, while also coming to the realization that the stories he’s grown up on about dragons being evil may not be true for every creature of the clan. Together, they bring a stop to the constant war between Vikings and dragons. I’m really looking forward to this year’s sequel to the 2010 hit and there’s even a planned third film due in 2016.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Golden Dragon

Golden Dragon Shot

While I’m not a huge fan of dragons, I have a deep respect for them. I wish I could sleep all day underneath a castle and be feared simply by reputation. I have to toss out a couple honourable mentions to Trogdor the Burninator from Strong Bad E-mails (Homestar Runner) and Eric Cartman’s stuffed animal dragon Rumpertumskin on South Park. Both characters are very minor players, but have given me great pleasure in the past.

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4.5 Sips out of 5):
I subbed in Torched Cherry Rum for Dragon Berry Rum because it’s what I had on hand and also thought it worked with the theme of dragons and fire. This shot was really good, particularly the mixing of the Goldschlager and Sour Apple Mix. The Torched Cherry Rum was indeed a good choice, adding a different note to an apple pie type flavour.

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China – Flying Tiger

Zodiac Zenith

The Sip Advisor’s Chinese Zodiac animal is the pig and I’d like to think I’m more Babe: Pig in the City (you know, an inspiration) than anything else. Putting on my astrological reading glasses, here’s what your Chinese Zodiac sign says about you, according to some of the celebrities and historical figures who fall under them:

Rat – Antonio Banderas, Cameron Diaz

Regardless of gender, you have been seen as a sex symbol at some point in your career and life. Remember, every person has a type. It should also be noted that your voice talents may lend themselves to the adventures of an animated ogre and you may find yourself immersed in a world of fairy tales… of the fractured variety, of course.

Shrek Kitty

Ox – Adolf Hitler, Napoleon

You have serious issues with people of certain creeds and your militaristic side always shines through. Your thirst for land and power cannot be quenched and it seems like you have a chip on your shoulder for whatever reason. Some serious counselling should be pursued before you are added to the list of worst people EVER!

Tiger – Marilyn Monroe, Natalie Wood

You’re natural in front of a camera, but have your vices. You are pursued by numerous gentlemen callers and your beauty is undeniable. Sadly, you’re a starlet who will leave this world too soon and your death will be surrounded by mystique and intrigue. Conspiracy theories, debate and investigations abound, but the truth may never be known.

Rabbit – John Cleese, Robin Williams

You’re a comedian, sometimes manic, but always hilarious. You will go to extreme lengths to get a chuckle and while some of your humour may be hard to absorb, the effort with which you try to draw in an audience is always appreciated. In later years, you may calm a little and accept a different type of role, but the comedy always finds a way to shine through.

Dragon – John Lennon, Ringo Starr

Going out on a bit of a limb here, but are you possibly a Beatle? You will go on to revolutionize your industry and leave a lasting mark on the world. You work best with a group of like-minded talents, but even on your own, there is a catalogue of decent offerings. Your hard work will serve you well later as fans continue to thirst for anything to do with the group.

Real Music

Snake – John F. Kennedy, Dick Cheney

You thrive in a position of power and are not afraid to stick to your guns to get your way. You are cool under pressure and use your many contacts to ensure success in all your endeavours. Tread lightly though, as accidents seem to happen when you’re near firearms and one thing is for sure: You should avoid riding in convertibles at all costs.

Horse – Mike Tyson, Kobe Bryant

You are a top athlete in your sport, but bad decisions can come back to haunt you. Perhaps you were given too much, too soon. It’s an awful lot of pressure to still be a teenager and have worldwide success and the fame that goes with that. Despite the negative hype, fans still love you and championships seem like a natural fit.

Goat – John Wayne, Robert De Niro

Your style is so infamous and distinguishable that you’ve become a parody of yourself as your career has entered its twilight. While many wish to remember you at your finest, you keep trucking along, piling up the credits and cash. Nothing wrong with that. Anyone in a similar position would do the same, riding into the sunset with a boatload of money.

Monkey – Leonardo Da Vinci, Julius Caesar

You appear in many history textbooks and have played a great role in shaping the world, although your impact may not be fully appreciated until later. Movies and TV series’ will be made in your honour, posthumously of course. That’s not to say you didn’t have a decent existence while you were living. Beware of turncoats… that will allow you to prosper longer.

monalisa_smile

Rooster – Beyonce, Britney Spears, P Diddy

All you want to do is sing and the term diva could apply. Diddy, I’m looking at you! Your talents may range and you enjoy dabbling in a number of different business ventures from record labels to fragrances to clothing lines. Yuck, I just found out that Yoko Ono is also a Rooster and that makes me disgusted with the whole lot of roosters… bunch of cocks!

Dog – Harry Houdini, Michael Jackson

You have a fascination with the mysteries of the universe and are considered… well, quirky, to put it nicely. You are worshipped by some, but trashed and disregarded by others. Either way, you will be remembered for your showmanship and talent. Who let the dogs out? You did… you did.

Pig – Alfred Hitchcock, Stephen King

You prefer to explore the dark side of the human psyche. You are capable of causing people to fear everything from birds to clowns and may have even been offered the title ‘Master of Horror’. Apparently, you like to cameo in your own works when they are adapted for film and television… if that’s the case, I can’t wait for The Sip Advisor film to be shopped!

China: Flying Tiger

Apr 3

  • 1.5 oz Chu Yeh Ching Chiew
  • 0.5 oz Gin
  • Splash of Grenadine
  • Dash of Peychaud’s Bitters
  • Garnish with a Maraschino Cherry

Although many of us believe we fall under one animal only, Chinese astrology assigns animals not only based of birth year, but also by month (inner animals), by day (true animals) and by hour (secret animals). This makes the Sip Advisor some sort of pig, rooster, rat/pig (Thursdays have two animals), dog hybrid. And here I was hoping to be the elusive man-bear-pig from South Park!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3 Sips out of 5):
Thanks to this drink, I finally placed what Chiew reminds me of… Absinthe. It has those medicinal/herbal flavours and that can cause issues for some. Luckily, I like Absinthe and therefore had no problem with this cocktail. The one complaint I could throw its way is that it wasn’t fizzy and lacked a citrus taste that could have helped.

March 1 – The Scraps

Excess Enjoyment

The Sip Advisor gets a little teary-eyed when a bottle of liquor gets down to the last dregs. What do you do with that thin layer of booze left at the bottom of the bottle? Well, my little sippers, as always, I have the answer for you. Here are the top five ideas of what to do with remaining residual liquor:

#5: Molotov Cocktail

While the Sip Advisor is never one to advocate violence – shouting and yelling at inanimate objects, sure, but physicality, nyet – making your own incendiary device for the purposes of entertainment doesn’t sound so bad. Simply combine all the final portions you have on hand and light that sucker up. I’d suggest dancing wildly and nakedly around your impromptu fire, hopefully while burning up something from your past and chanting cathartically.

Drinks Molotov Cocktail

That would be so bad ass!

#4: Fire-Spitter

The ancient art of spraying a flammable fluid at a fire source and becoming some sort of dragon-human hybrid can be all yours for the low price of using leftover alcohol you have lying around. People will marvel at your feats of magic and trickery, especially if you escape without charring your delicate facial features. You may even acquire a cool nickname like Dragon Man or Dragon Boy for your efforts… results may vary!

#3: Have an Alcohol Fight

Similar to the classic scene from Zoolander, where the male models enjoy a spirited gasoline fight while jamming to “Wake Me Up Before You Go Go” by Wham, a great idea is to start splashing your friends with booze. Of course, the soundtrack to your mêlée should be something a little more badass. If you have some ladies around, make sure that they are dressed in tight, white tank tops. Just be careful not to ignite any flame source, as that could make your gleeful battle end in tragedy.

#2: Mouthwash

Brushing one’s teeth is one of the most important things we can do, but it’s often not enough to keep cavities at bay on its own. Add in some mouthwash and you should be good to go. What’s that, you don’t have any Listerine on hand? Well, that’s where scrap liquor comes in handy. Pour some in a shot glass, toss it back, and swish and swirl it around your mouth. The best part is, you can swallow this mouthwash. Note: the dental benefits of booze have yet to be fully proven!

#1: Make This Shot

This is a booze enterprise after all and we must never forget that leftover liquor is still liquor… no man left behind, is what I always say. While the ingredients may or may not mix well together, we’ll never know unless we try. I’d say, try to have something included in the recipe that has a flavour base, just to make sure you don’t end up just downing harsher stuff. Then, tip it back and marvel at what you’ve created.

Super Saturday Shot Day: The Scraps (A Sip Advisor Original Recipe)

The Scraps Shooter

  • 0.3 oz Blueberry Vodka
  • 0.3 oz Peppermint Schnapps
  • 0.3 oz Peach Schnapps
  • 0.3 oz Spiced Whiskey
  • 0.3 oz Rye
  • Garnish with Lime End

Recipes will always vary for this shot, as it depends on what libations you have leftover, sitting around and waiting to be used. Send me the variants you’ve come up with, along with the results, and perhaps I’ll throw together some kind of competition on the subject.

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4.5 Sips out of 5):
I’ve been wanting to make this shot for some time and while cleaning and reorganizing my bar recently, I finally decided to go ahead and get rid of some bottles that had been lying around for far too long with little liquid left. The results, I have to say, were surprising. I think I had enough flavoured ingredients on hand to make the shot quite tasty and things you normally wouldn’t expect blending together very well worked out nicely. For garnish, I used a Lime End to go along with the theme of remnants and allowing absolutely no waste. I suppose you could make similar shooters using perfectly full bottles of spirits, but the recipe would lose some of its mystique!

November 3 – Dragon’s Breath

Mythological Mayhem

I’m not really one for mythological beings, but if forced to pick a few favourites (as I’m being charged to do so here) these are the creatures I would pick:

Dragon

I like some movies based around dragons. How to Train Your Dragon was really good and Pete’s Dragon was a childhood treat. In each of those films, the dragons (Toothless and Elliot, respectively) were of a friendlier, loveable personality. I’m also a fan of the Eddie Murphy-voiced Mushu, but not particularly in the movie Mulan, but for the little dragon’s appearance as co-host of the Disney Animation Building’s ‘How to Draw’ attraction.

dragons-playing

Pegasus

The winged horse that I best remember from Disney’s Hercules cartoon, where it helped our hero Herc battle the forces of James Woods (otherwise known as Hades and evil incarnate). Wrestler Chris Benoit was also known as the Pegasus Kid and Wild Pegasus early in his career, as he toured Japan, Mexico, and Europe. Back to the stallion, one myth states that Pegasus was born from the spurting blood of a decapitated Medusa. Those Greeks sure no how to spin a yarn!

Centaur/Minotaur

Sometimes I wish I was half-man and half-beast… well, even more so than when I’m on a raging bender! What’s the difference between a centaur and a minotaur? A centaur has the body of a beast and head of a man, while a minotaur is of the opposite persuasion. While some may think that it’s hard to pick from one of these designations, I’d choose centaur in a heartbeat. That way I could look as gorgeous as I do now and be able to be a high profile athlete thanks to my tremendous lower body strength.

Unicorn

The national animal of Scotland (which still cracks me up to this day), was purported to have magic qualities. It was thought that the unicorn’s horn could be ground up and used in potions to help cure the ill. During medieval and Renaissance times, the horn of the narwhal was often sold to those looking to harness the unicorn’s powers. Nowadays, the horns of rhinoceroses are sold to those looking to increase their sexual virility. To sum up: horn = good.

unicorns-are-real

Griffin

This creature mixes the head and wings of an eagle with the body of a lion. Geez, can you imagine if lions could fly. Good luck keeping them pent up in a zoo, even if they do sleep away most of the day. I like big cats like lions and such because I think they possess a surliness of sorts. Anyway, getting back on track, the griffin combines an animal I love with an animal I detest, so what does one do in cases like that? I guess you just focus on the positives… go Hufflepuff!

Gremlin

While I prefer gremlins when their still in their Mogwai state and they haven’t been fed after midnight, like the uber cute Gizmo, they do serve an entertaining and often hilarious role even when they’ve crossed over to the dark side. Gremlins are often portrayed negatively, which has upset supporters of their society. They’re usually seen tampering with in-flight airplanes and disrupting other machinery. They should not be trusted, should you ever come across one.

Kraken

I like Kraken Black Spice Rum and shouting “Release the Kraken!” when we’re swimming in Ma and Pa Sip’s pool is a favourite pastime of mine, so the Kraken is a must for the list. The Kraken is usually depicted as an enormous sea monster, similar to a giant squid or octopus. It is capable of bringing down an entire ship and has been blamed for numerous tragedies at sea. These false accusations have caused the Kraken to remain hidden, deep beneath the surface and we may never know of its actual existence.

release-the-kraken

Gargoyle

The Disney cartoon, Gargoyles, is one of those extremely underrated shows that had enjoyable elements for kids and adults alike. Along with the humour of gargoyles adapting to a 20th century New York City (after being awakened from thousands of years trapped in stone) many storylines were dark, complex, and featured adult themes such as betrayal and hatred. Being a self-effacing person, I’ve adopted Moe Szyslak’s line about being a gargoyle, although I’m told I have model cheekbones!

Phoenix

While the first thing I think about when I hear the word Phoenix (aside from the Arizona town, of course) is Jean Grey’s evil character in X-Men (making her so much more interesting that plain old, boring Jean Grey), the Pheonix is another mythological bird that must be vanquished from the world. The only problem is, the Phoenix will continually rise from the ashes of its predecessor and haunt me with loud noises, poop bombs, and dive-bomb attacks.

Werewolf

There’s a great episode (aren’t they all!) of American Dad where Steve thinks he’s been turned into a werewolf, while at the same time, Roger has taken in a wolf to overcome his distress after the death of his two sea monkeys. Don’t just take it from me, go watch the episode. I’ve never really been a huge fan of werewolves and the whole Twilight franchise did nothing to help with that matter. Team “Who Gives a Fuck” was a more accurate take on the series.

Drink #307: Dragon’s Breath

Dragon's Breath Drink Recipe

  • Rim glass with Caesar Spice
  • 1.5 oz Dragonberry Rum
  • Top with Cranberry Juice
  • Splash of Lime Juice
  • Dash of Hot Sauce
  • Garnish with a Lime Wheel

What are your favourite mythological animals? And please don’t send me any replies citing Pokemon or anything else having to do with Japanese culture like Godzilla and Mothra. Seriously, those people come up with the craziest stuff!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
I added just the right amount of Hot Sauce to this cocktail. It wasn’t so much that the drink was hard to enjoy and it wasn’t too little that you didn’t get a slight burn at the finish of each sip. I added a Caesar Spice Rim to give each sip that extra kick of heat!