Mixer Mania #30 – Blowing Bubbles

One of the things that pops into my mind when working with Bubble Gum Soda is the character of Bubbles from Trailer Park Boys. That got me thinking of other characters with similar monikers… and there’s more than you would think. Here are some of the more infamous ones:

Trailer Park Boys

The trio of Julian, Ricky and Bubbles is always on the prowl for a get-rich-quick scheme, with Julian the brain, Ricky the muscle and Bubbles the heart of any operation. Bubbles real name has never been divulged, while his nickname certainly stems from his large glasses. The kitty-loving resident of Sunnyvale Trailer Park splits his time between fixing shopping carts, wrestling as the Green Bastard and playing a mean guitar.

Bubbles Kitties

Bubble Bobble

One of my favourite video games as a youngster was Bubble Bobble, featuring the characters of Bub and Bob, two bubble dragons. This classic Taito platformer sees the twins attempt to rescue their girlfriends from the Cave of Monsters. Given the creatures are good at blowing bubbles, I wonder how Bub and Bob were rewarded for their heroic efforts!?

Bubbles the Chimpanzee

Michael Jackson bought this chimp from a Texas research facility in the 1980s and turned him into an international celebrity, with exploits including drinking tea with the mayor of Osaka, Japan. Hopefully this wasn’t an attempt by Jackson to seem more normal! Bubbles is actually still alive, aged 34, and has lived at a Florida-based sanctuary since 2005.

Little Britain

Bubbles DeVere is the worst nightmare of every health spa. She has racked up massive debts at the Hill Grange Health Spa, often roams the facility in the buff, acts like a member of the social elite, and worst of all, she refuses to ever leave the place. As you can imagine, this leads to numerous hilarious situations, which oddly make Ms. DeVere endearing.

Bubbles Little Britain

Lilo & Stitch

Former CIA agent Cobra Bubbles is the social worker overseeing Lilo and her being in the custody of her older sister Nani. Despite some initial problems, by the end of the film, Cobra is a friend to the family, knowing full well that Stitch is not the family dog, but is in fact an alien species. This is thanks to his CIA experience… the truth is out there.

Legend of Zelda

The names of enemies in video games are often quite interesting. Did you know that if you encounter a flying skull (sometimes on fire) in the Legend of Zelda franchise, that these are known as Bubble. When hero Link is hit by a Bubble, he will react in different ways, depending on the type of Bubble. Through the series, players have met Fire, Ice and Cursed Bubbles, thus far.

Detroit Lions

For whatever reason, the NFL’s Detroit Lions logo, featured predominantly on the team’s helmets and various merchandise, is nicknamed Bubbles. This is apparently more of a fan nickname and not an official one, started by radio personality Art Regner, who once opined that the lion looked like he was “batting at bubbles”. Some would argue the Detroit franchise often plays that way, too.

Mixer Mania #30: Blue Bong

Blue Bong.JPG

  • 1 oz Vodka
  • 1 oz Gin
  • Top with Bubble Gum Soda
  • Splash of Blue Raspberry Mixer
  • Dash of Lemon Juice
  • Garnish with a Lollipop

While not a character, the importance of bubble wrap as a packing tool and an entertainment device cannot be underestimated… just wanted to get that out there!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 out of 5 Sips):
I did halve each of the alcohol ingredients to make the cocktail more palatable and it really worked. This beverage is quite tasty, with just the right amount of sweet and sour. I was forced to garnish to cocktail with a Lollipop, as Mrs. Sip recently got rid of all the candy garnishes – including bubble gum pieces – I had lying around. Such is married life!

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Mixer Mania #26 – Cocktail Leaders

The Caesar – featuring Clamato Juice – is a very popular drink in Canada and that got me thinking about beverages named after historical rulers. Here are some of those concoctions and the men (and one woman) who inspired them:

Winston Churchill

The Churchill combines Scotch, lime juice, sweet vermouth, and Cointreau, and was created for the man himself, by bartender Joe Gilmore of the American Bar in London’s Savoy Hotel. Apparently, Churchill preferred Johnnie Walker in his servings. There are other drinks named after and inspired by the British Bulldog (highlighted by this slide show article), but this is the definitive entry.

Richard Nixon

Another creation to come from Joe Gilmore and the Savoy Hotel’s American Bar, the Nixon was actually compiled at the bar and then sent over to Claridge’s Hotel, where president Nixon was staying during a 1969 visit to the UK. Made using bourbon, sloe gin and peach bitters, this is a cocktail I have yet to try, but sounds pretty good.

Nixon Not a Crook

Queen Mary I

While the Bloody Mary beverage has been attributed to a few different people, the general consensus is that it belongs to this queen, who earned her ominous nickname through countless executions of Protestants during a five-year reign over England and Ireland. I’ve never much cared for the tomato juice-based Bloody Mary, greatly preferring a Caesar, instead.

Abraham Lincoln

Although the tragic American president was assassinated in 1865, it wasn’t until 1900 that the man was immortalized in cocktail form with the President Lincoln. The recipe, which first appeared in San Francisco’s Pacific Wine and Spirit Review, mixes bourbon, simple syrup, orange curacao, orange bitters, absinthe and club soda.

Abraham Lincoln Quote.jpg

Napoleon Bonaparte

When you have a liquor created in your honour, as the French Emperor did with Mandarin Cognac, why not have a cocktail bear your name as well. Ironically, the Napoleon doesn’t contain cognac and is instead built with gin, orange liqueur and vermouth. I wonder if that would add to the little man’s complex!?

Theodore Roosevelt

The rugged adventurer, who would come to have stuffed bears everywhere named after him, can also lay claim to having his very own cocktail. Returning to New York after a 15-month hunting trip in East Africa, Roosevelt was greeted with a drink. While the original ingredients are forgotten, a beverage of dark rum, dry vermouth, orange juice and simple syrup has taken its place.

Mixer Mania #26: A Curious Feeling

A Curious Feeling.JPG

  • 2 oz Gin
  • 1 oz Coffee Liqueur
  • Top with Orange Juice
  • Splash of Clamato Juice
  • Dash of Angostura Bitters
  • Pinch Brown Sugar
  • Garnish with a Cucumber Slice

Apparently, the fast track to having a cocktail named after you is to become president of the United States… seems easy enough!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
Given the cocktail’s name and ingredients, I was a little leery of what to expect. It ended up being pretty good, with the Clamato Juice (a Bacon-flavoured variety I recently discovered) playing a MVP role.

Mixer Mania #10 – Eye of the Beholder

In the TV series Seinfeld, there’s an infamous scene where George Costanza gets sprayed in the eye with juice from a grapefruit. This causes him to wink his eye at unfortunate times, resulting in typical episodic mayhem. Here are a few other items you wouldn’t want to get in your eyes:

Hot Sauce

Peppery flavour enhancers can burn the most hardened of mouths, so I can only imagine the excruciating pain a dollop to the eyes would cause. Somehow, this has become a viral dare for those brave stupid enough to try. It’s scary that millennials hold the future of our world in their hands and this is what they’re doing in their free time.

Spider Webs

Nothing causes some people to panic more than when they walk through a spider web. Typically formed inconveniently at face level, the victim begins flailing about and trying to get the sticky substance off their face. Then, those horrible thoughts creep in: Was it more than just a web? Could there be a spider on me? Commence full hysterical breakdown!

spider-web-dance

Shampoo

It amazes me that a substance that is used so close to the eyes has not been adapted to make it safer and painless. Sure, there Johnson & Johnson No Tears Shampoo for babies, but why hasn’t that secret ingredient been placed into the recipe of every other shampoo since!?

Finger

An errant finger to the eyes may have partly made the careers of the Three Stooges, but it’s not very fun if you’re on the receiving end of one of these attacks (accidental or not). The ol’ finger poke is still used by villainous professional wrestlers to this day and the tactic is as dastardly as ever.

Eyelash

While this is a natural occurrence, it’s one that drives the Sip Advisor absolutely insane. It is such a predicament that there are numerous step-by-step guides online with instructions on how to remove the troublemaker.

eyelashes

Tree Debris

When the Sip Advisor was still in his formative, chocolate milk days, he was once climbing tree and ended up with bristles directly in the eye. I was forced to wear an eyepatch for the next couple days, while my eye flushed the trespasser out. Still, I remember managing to still score a couple soccer goals at recess, despite the handicap.

Pepper Spray

I am loathe to put myself in any situation where one might be pepper sprayed, as the substance has been deadly or contributed to death in rare cases. Much like hot sauce, there are some idiots who view pepper spray as a challenge and I consider this a form of Darwinism.

chuck-norris-pepper-spray

Venom/Acid

The deadly spitting cobra, as well as some vipers, are known to first blind their prey by expelling venom into the victims eyes. There has also been documented stories of folks having acid thrown in their face, often by jilted lovers or competition for a companion.

Sand

It’s a widely known fact that the Sip Advisor hates sand and any place that is comprised of it: beaches, the desert, sandboxes! One of the reasons is I always seem to get some of the gritty stuff in my eye, thanks to a gust of wind. I’ll stick to my concrete jungle, thank you very much!

Mixer Mania #10: Panty Remover

Panty Remover

  • 2 oz Gin
  • 1 oz Vodka
  • Top with Grapefruit Soda
  • Splash of Lemon Juice
  • Garnish with Grapefruit Wedge

After doing research for this article, there are some insane things people have got splashed or caught in their eyes. Stay safe out there, my little sippers!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (2.5 Sips out of 5):
Okay, so I wasn’t a big fan of this cocktail, but my faith in Grapefruit Soda was restored when I used the remainder of my can of Squirt to make a Paloma with Tanteo Jalapeno Tequila!

Mixer Mania #4 – Jack of All Trades

Upon further research, it seems that Club Soda is a pretty versatile product. Yes, it can be used for more than getting drunk, while limiting calorie intake! Here are some other uses for the drink:

Stain Remover – Unfortunately, it can’t remove some of the human stains that exist out there (your Donald Trump’s and the like), but perhaps if those folks drank enough of the pop, it might make them disappear.

Fluff Food – Sorry, I was laughing too hard when I thought of food needing to be fluffed, in the same manner that the term is used in the adult film industry.

Remove Rust – I wonder if it would also work on the Sip Advisor’s joints after winter hibernation. Those first few trips back to the gym are not very fun.

Water Plants – Hmmm, water is free and soda costs money… I think I’ll stick to the water. Better yet, just get rid of all your plants and eliminate the dilemma entirely.

watering-plants

Soothe Your Belly – Given the pop in mixed drinks often leads to “gut rot” for some, I’m skeptical about this solution.

Restore Hair Color – This tactic is to be used after swimming, but won’t you damage your hair to a similar degree if you first have to wash it with Club Soda and then wash it again to wash out the Club Soda? I mean, those dyes are only good for so many washes.

Shuck Oysters – I would still think this process would eliminate some of the natural flavours oysters are supposed to provide… you know, the aphrodisiac qualities.

Preserve Newspaper Clippings – What lunatic still does this!?

Clean Surfaces – If you ever spill some Club Soda, you can simply tell your wife/girlfriend/mother, etc. that you were simply trying to clean the place, like they’ve been asking you to do for weeks.

spring-cleaning-tip

Windshield Cleaning – I bet there are some car guys out there that have always dreamed of having a drink with their vehicle.

Clean Gems – Then have sticky fingers for the rest of your life.

Rid Pots and Pans of Stuck-On Food – So much for leftovers.

Remove Bird Droppings – If only it could remove birds, as well.

Deodorize Pet Accident Areas – I wonder if it would also work to eliminate the odor of those who like to use alleys as toilets. If so, I think we’re going to need a lot more of it.

Mixer Mania #4: Gin Rickey

Gin Rickey.JPG

  • 1.5 oz Gin
  • Top with Club Soda
  • Splash of Lime Juice
  • Dash of Simple Syrup
  • Garnish with a Lime Wedge

It seems Club Soda’s best attribute is being able to remove unsightly and gross things. And yet we’re throwing all caution to the wind and still drinking the stuff. Well, bottom’s up!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
Yet another classic cocktail that the Sip Advisor has yet to profile. This is the ultimate scurvy remedy, but I would have loved a little more complexity to the recipe.

BC Beer Baron #56 – Deep Cove Scout Rye IPA

The final stop of our recent North Vancouver brewery crawl brought us to Deep Cove Brewing, where despite the lateness in the day and still having to make the trek back home, we made sure to enjoy our brief layover.

The Scout Rye IPA was my favourite beer amongst all the Deep Cove options we tried (one of everything is usually how we try to roll). I’m an IPA fan, though, so other drinkers – including the rest of my own crew – would likely not agree with the Sip Advisor. At 7% ABV and 82 IBUs, this brew (formerly known as the Star Struck Rye IPA) is not for lightweights. I’m finding more and more that I enjoy an element of rye, whiskey or bourbon in my beers, as an experience enhancer.

Deep Cove Scout Rye IPA

The beer’s can design features a logo used by hikers to mark routes through the North Shore Rainforest. The brewery writes, “Whether pinned to a tree or on the front of a can you can be sure it will lead you to a bold epic adventure.”

Deep Cove is one of the most active breweries I’ve come across, as far as planned events go. Live music is a regular fixture and they seem to be more involved in the community than many of their fellow operations. Deep Cove also distills their own vodka and gin, with both spirits being available in their North Vancouver tasting room.

For more BC Beer Baron articles, please visit our main page…

Flavour Revolution – Blueberry

Where is my Mind?

Blueberries are said to help greatly in maintaining cognitive functioning and fighting off memory loss – so long as you enjoy a serving of them once per week – as the berries clear toxins that gather in the brain. Clearly, the entertainment industry is unaware of these developments because it is rife with stories of amnesiacs. Here are some of the most notable memory loss cases:

Jason Bourne – The Bourne Franchise

If a case of amnesia resulted in the Sip Advisor being able to instinctively fight secret agent style and have a highly-functioning mind, I’d say it would all be worth it… I know Mrs. Sip would appreciate the change in brain activity! Jason Bourne awakens one day and can’t remember who he is, but he can certainly kick ass and that keeps him alive through three (soon to be four) films.

short term memory loss

Leonard – Memento

Although suffering from short-term memory loss, Leonard is still working to solve the murder of his wife. To remember the clues he’s put together, Leonard uses Polaroid photos and self-inflicted tattoos as reminders. I should do the same on binge nights! This psychological crime thriller is told in reverse order, which only adds to the building mystery.

Wolverine – X-Men Franchise

Following the procedure which gave him his trademark adamantium bone structure, Logan struggles to remember his past (in the origins movie, an adamantium bullet to the noggin also helps) and it takes the mind reading power of Professor X to make any headway into the mutant’s psyche. We all have events we’d like to block from our memory, but I’d rather have a mix of good and bad than none at all.

Lucy Whitmore – 50 First Dates

Can you imagine having to remind your partner each and every day about your shared past together? Thankfully, Mrs. Sip only has to do this for me after a hard drinking night. In this case, perhaps it was working with Adam Sandler again that drove Drew Barrymore to memory loss. Anyhoo, Lucy is helped along by Sandler’s Henry to break the pattern and live a happily ever after, each new day.

memory loss favourite movie

Joel Barish and Clementine Kruczynski – Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

This one is a little different, in that main characters Joel and Clementine choose to wipe their minds clear of any memories to do with each other after their relationship goes awry. Regardless of this, they wind up together again, as if their love was always meant to be. Jim Carrey must be the king of playing amnesiacs, having also tackled the role in The Majestic and The Number 23.

Dory – Finding Nemo

Played for comedic effect, Dory is one of the many characters father Marlin comes across in his search for his son Nemo. Dory proved to be such a popular character that the pacific regal blue tang (thanks to Wikipedia for that!) will be getting her own movie, Finding Dory, due out in 2016. Ironically, the movie will be centered on Dory getting her memories back, leading to another adventure.

amnesia joke

The Wolfpack – The Hangover

The one thing worse than one person not being able to remember what happened before, is three friends blanking out on the previous night’s activities. Thanks to being slipped roofies, the Wolfpack can’t figure out what trouble they got up to and worst of all, their buddy Doug is missing and his wedding day is coming up quickly.

Douglas Quaid – Total Recall

Mrs. Sip and I love to travel, but I’m not sure we’d be into futuristic travel methods which include having images placed in your mind, while you sit in a chair. Of course, an innocent visual journey to the planet Mars, helps Quaid realize that he’s actually a secret agent operative, with crazy fighting skills. Quaid (aka Carl Hauser) now has to go to the real Mars, to figure out why his memory was wiped.

Flavour Revolution: Lucifer’s Tears

  • 1.5 oz Gin
  • 0.5 oz Blueberry Liqueur
  • 0.25 oz Galliano
  • 0.25 oz Sambuca
  • Garnish with Blueberries

Soap Operas are also a prime breeding ground for cases of amnesia, either occurring after a death, or leading to a murder most foul!

November 11 – Gibson

Hall of Fame 2015

In 2013, we launched The Sip Advisor Hall of Fame and since then, have filled its hallowed halls with 14 entrants worthy of enshrinement. This has included a Beer and Wine Wing, as well as one for Mixers. If you’re curious about past inductees, you can check out the 2013 and 2014 festivities. Tonight, however, is all about the class of 2015!

Captain Morgan Rum

Captain Morgan was the first spiced rum I ever enjoyed and it introduced me to a wonderful world of rum variants. Since then, I’ve also become a fan of the brand’s Lime Bite release, although it is impossible to find in Canada, despite having a large Canadian presence. I won’t be petty about that, though, and blacklist the company from the Hall of Fame. As far as new products go, I’m looking forward to trying the recently released Barrel Blast (cinnamon and citrus in a cannonball-themed bottle).

Captain Morgan Cannon Blast

Absolut Vodka

Over the years, I’ve been able to try some really unique vodka flavours from Absolut, including Texas (cucumber and serrano chili), and Karnival (passion fruit and orange blossom), but there are many more to try, such as Orient Apple (ginger and red apple). Absolut was even the Sip Advisor’s selection for the Sweden entry of my Around the World project. While Absolut may not be the finest vodka on the market, it plays an important role in cocktail development, thanks to incredibly diverse line-up.

Bols Melon Liqueur

The Sip Advisor has always been a fan of melon-flavoured items and this green gem is no different. Perfect for martinis, cocktails, and shots, it is a bottle that I’m quick to replace when it runs dry. There are so many great recipes I’ve used that incorporate Melon Liqueur that it’s hard to narrow down a top choice. The House of Bols released their liqueurs in foam dispensers a couple years back (we have Blue Curacao and Crème de Bananes) and I’d love to track down the Melon Liqueur one.

Jim Beam Black Cherry Bourbon

Like Absolut Vodka, Jim Beam Bourbon played a role in the Around the World project, representing the United States. My affinity for the alcohol goes back much further, though. The Sip Advisor was once a participant in a murder mystery game, given the character of Jimmy Bourbon. While my Cajun accent was atrocious, I did get to carry around and drink from a bottle of Jim Beam Bourbon all night, so all was well. Later, I levelled up and grabbed the company’s Black Cherry Bourbon and the rest is history!

jim beam black cherry bourbon

Ouzo/Sambuca

These cousins are perfect for an after meal shot, helping with digestion. When Mrs. Sip and I travelled to Athens and Santorini, Greece (you know, before the country went down the crapper), a highlight of our amazing dinners was sharing some Ouzo, sometimes with the staff who has served us. The restaurants outside of Greece that have adopted the tradition are tops in my books. While the licorice-flavoured liqueurs don’t factor into many cocktails, they are still very useful spirits.

Unibroue Beer

Mrs. Sip and I are big fans of this Quebec-based brewery (perhaps the best thing since poutine and smoked meat sandwiches to come from the Canadian province), which has a line of beers that are each interesting and delicious. Last year, we were lucky to attend a pairing dinner, featuring Unibroue selections and this year we’ll be repeating the feat later this month. Our favourites from the brewery include Blanche de Chambly, La Fin du Monde, Trois Pistoles, and La Resolution.

Lemon-Lime Soda

With Pepsi and Dr. Pepper already enjoying spots within the Hall of Fame’s Mixer Wing, it’s time for Lemon-Lime Soda to join the fray. I can’t really narrow down whether I like Sprite or 7-Up (or a non-name brand variation) better, so I’ll just enshrine the entire genre. Lemon-Lime Soda doesn’t stay on the Sip Advisor’s shelf for long, often used in Tom Collins experimentation, as I try different gins. As the King of Mojitos, I’m also quick to use Lemon-Lime Soda over Club Soda, for that added flavour kick.

Hall of Fame 2015: Gibson

  • 2.5 oz Gin
  • 0.5 oz Dry Vermouth
  • Garnish with a Cocktail Onion

Thank you for joining us on this festive evening, as we salute the booze that has made The Sip Advisor possible. Where will 2016 take us, you ask? Only time will tell!