Snack Time #40 – Goldkenn Liquor Collection Chocolate Bars

Recent gifts for myself and Mrs. Sip included some Goldkenn Chocolate products. Of course, given our reputations, the delicacies came from the Swiss Chocolatier’s Liquor Collection and they were a very good introduction to the line.

Among the Chocolate Bars Mrs. Sip and I received, were the Amarula and Jack Daniels Honey Whiskey varieties. Both were very tasty and not too booze heavy. I particularly liked the honeycomb of the JD bar, while the fruit flavour of the Amarula bar was delicious.

Goldkenn Liquor Collection Chocolate Bars.png

Each bar is comprised of breakable pieces, so the treat can be savoured for some time. The collection also includes Beluga Vodka, Cointreau, Remy Martin Cognac, Grand Marnier, Saint James Rum, Famous Grouse Whiskey, and Morand Williamine Pear Liqueur.

The lineup reminds me of many of the chocolate liqueur bottle collections that are available, especially around Christmas. I’m hoping to try there bars and some of their Goldkenn siblings again very soon.

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Flavour Revolution – Bacon

Maniacs Unite

Bacon Mania has dominated the culinary universe for many years and the salty meat can be found in everything from sodas to massage oils, donuts to jelly beans. Here are some of the other manias that have taken over the world… for better or worse!

Beatlemania

When the Beatles first came over to North America, hysteria was common, especially among female fans, many of whom fainted upon seeing or hearing the Fab Four. The band was already popular in Germany and their homeland of the United Kingdom, but upon crossing the pond, things blew up beyond control. Amazingly, the group stopped doing live performances in 1966, because the frenzy of screaming fans made it impossible to have good shows. Other acts that have enjoyed varying degrees of mania, include Latin boy band Menudo (Menudomania), female superstars the Spice Girls (Spicemania), and Canadian “bad boy” Justin Bieber (Biebermania).

Beatlemania

Lisztomania

One of the original mainstream manias (dating back to 1841), centered around composer Franz Liszt. It’s hard to believe that in the subdued realm of classical music, there would be such fervor for one performer. I have to admit that judging by illustrations of the dude, he was a decently looking guy and his talent seems to have spoken for itself, as well. During his most popular years, Liszt’s performances were said to cause feelings of “mystical ecstasy”. Folks would even fight over the man’s discarded handkerchiefs and gloves. Worst of all, some obsessive fans tried to get a lock of Liszt’s hair or the remains of his coffee, to drink themselves.

Hulkamania/Wrestle Mania

The Rock N’ Wrestling connection in the 1980’s gave birth to two different manias that still exist to this day, 30 years later. On the shoulders of Hulk Hogan, the then World Wrestling Federation decided to break away from the sport’s territorial traditions and launch themselves as the first national wrestling promotion. Hogan’s immense popularity was later dubbed Hulkamania, with his many fans given the title of Hulkamaniacs. As part of their move into the mainstream, owner Vince McMahon created the mega event WrestleMania, which has gone on to become the Super Bowl of wrestling and recently celebrated its 31st incarnation.

hulkamania

Pottermania

We’ve discussed on this site before that the Sip Advisor isn’t much of a reader, so I really can’t understand the fixation behind a series of books… especially ones geared towards children, but obsessed over by grown adults (I guess the suggested age on the books of young adult was completely ignored). This mania includes everything from the writing of fan fiction to participating in role-playing games, and everything in between. The general public is not alone from enjoying the series, as Barack Obama, Stephen King, Keira Knightley, and others have all claimed to be fans of the works. Since Pottermania, we have also seen fads involving vampires, followed by zombies. What will be next?

Trudeaumania

Us Canadians don’t get very passionate about much (hockey, beer, and poutine being obvious exceptions), so the fact that a politician of all people was able to drum up such a craze over his entry into the national leadership race, is absolutely flabbergasting to the Sip Advisor. Pierre Trudeau certainly isn’t the only head of a nation to gain a cult following of sorts. His charisma, charm, and struggle to change the status quo all came about during an interesting time in history… yes, the turbulent 1960s! Not surprisingly, Trudeaumania began to wane when the Prime Minister of Canada married in 1971. Today, Trudeau’s son Justin is working towards leading the same country his father did.

Flavour Revolution: Bakon L’Orange

  • 1.5 oz Bakon Vodka
  • 0.25 oz Frangelico
  • 0.25 oz Grand Marnier
  • Splash of Vanilla
  • Dash of Orange Bitters
  • Garnish with a Bacon Strip

Of course, there’s also some of my favourite manias, such as megalomania, kleptomania, and maniamania (yes, this is actually a thing!). My actual preferred mania is the Toy Story Midway Mania attraction at Disneyland’s California Adventure park. If you’ve never been on the ride, you must give it a try. The line-up is always worth it!

April 18 – High Five

Playing Peeves

Earlier this season, the Toronto Maple Leafs got into trouble for not doing their typical salute to the crowd, following a win. They were accused of snubbing the audience that had recently gone so far as to throw jerseys on the ice, when disgusted with the team’s play. Really, it’s their fault for being Maple Leafs fans in the first place, but I digress. While I don’t have any issue with the salute, one way or the other, here are some other player traditions that should be outlawed:

#5: Staged Fights (NHL)

While this pet peeve bothers me less than others that did not make this list, I figured I’d be fair and try to include as many different sports as I could. I’m not the biggest advocate of fighting in hockey, but I do like the odd tilt, usually between two light/middleweights who are chucking knuckles for a reason. Staged fights between two super heavyweights, only fighting because that’s all they can provide to the game, is a waste of roster spots. With the demise of the hockey enforcer, this happens rarely in today’s NHL. You still see the occasional bout off the opening draw, but it’s usually based off of something that happened in the team’s last contest.

hockey fights

#4: Slapping Helmets (NFL)

Given all the concussion concerns and lawsuits being launched by former players, it blows my mind when I see entire football squads viciously slapping each other on the helmet, in order to CELEBRATE a play. Talk about friendly fire! It almost makes you wish they went back to the days of smacking each other on the ass, as all that might do, is produce a bruise. I think every football player loses credibility in the whole concussion argument, given they’re likely seeing stars after successful plays, with injuries caused by their own teammates. Hmmm, perhaps the NFL should hire me onto their legal team!

#3: High-Fives After Each Free Throw Attempt (NBA)

Okay, so the fouled basketball player steps up to the free throw line, which basically means a take-your-time, unobstructed shot from a mere 15 meters away from the hoop and if he makes the shot, everyone on his team must give him a high-five… hell, they even high-five for a missed shot! There is some debate whether the exchange of pleasantries after each shot helps keep a player loose, or disrupts their technique or needed alterations for the follow-up shot. I think the whole process is ridiculous and I think some players do as well; given there have been instances of hoop stars mocking it.

free throw high fives

#2: Elaborate High-Five Routines (MLB)

What do you do when you’re sport is slower than watching paint dry and you have to play 162 games each season? Develop an elaborate high-five routine, of course! I don’t understand why sports highlight shows are so enamored with this trend and feature the choreographed hand-slapping and fist-bumping performance in their replay packages. Sometimes the act goes on for minutes at a time and yes, I guess that does make it more exciting than the game itself. You would never see this ridiculousness in faster-paced sports, because if a hockey player, for example, tried it, they would be body checked through the boards before they could finish!

#1: Complaints About Running Up the Score

I’ve largely only seen accusations of this in football circles, but the other major leagues will take measures to quell landslide victories. In hockey, you might see the winning team rest its scoring lines, in favour of checking players, while in baseball, bunting and stealing bases may be discouraged. Basketball games are usually too close to call and in football, teams may run shorter plays and not go for big scores. The problem with this is if I paid my hard earned money to go to a contest and my team was obliterating the opposition, why would I want that experience to stop? All fans want to see the stars of the sport do what they are paid millions to do: perform at the highest level, not take a game off.

Super Saturday Shot Day: High Five

High Five Shot

  • 0.3 Grand Marnier
  • 0.3 oz Rum
  • 0.3 oz Passion Fruit Liqueur
  • 0.3 oz Orange Juice
  • 0.3 oz Pineapple Juice
  • Garnish with an Orange Wedge

I can’t believe how many of these items are based on high-fiving. Narrowly missing the list was female tennis players screaming and grunting their way through matches… although, it is kind of hot! Next up, the Sip Advisor should take a look at the greatest pet peeves I have towards sports fans. This would include such gems as dorks leaving a game before it’s over and the completely unnecessary wave.

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
This is actually a cocktail recipe, but was easy to convert to a shooter, since all the ingredients were in equal portions already. It’s an incredibly fruity shot, so you know the flavours are going to be nice. The booze quotient could be upped a little so you know you’re drinking a shooter, but the taste is quite enjoyable as it is.

November 29 – Three’s Company

Three of a Kind

With Horrible Bosses 2 arriving in theatres, I thought it was the perfect time to look back on some of my favourite comedic trios. They say that three is a crowd, but in these cases, it couldn’t be more comfortable:

#5: Nick, Dale & Kurt – Horrible Bosses

I really enjoyed this movie, which sees a trio of friends decide to kill their respective bosses. Of course, things don’t go as planned and they become embroiled in a web of infidelity, break and enter, and homicide. The sequel sees the cast reunite with Nick, Dale and Kurt starting their own business and having to take drastic measures when competition comes along, trying to crush their operation. Best of all, Jennifer Aniston is back for another spin as the nympho dentist!

Horrible-Bosses-Trio

#4: Aqua Teen Hunger Force

Made up of Frylock, Master Shake, and Meatwad, these three food items started life as crime fighters, but evolved into lazy degenerates. I’m particularly fond of Master Shake and Meatwad, who are complete polar opposites. Master Shake is always looking to con his way into money and babes, while Meatwad is a sweet and caring lad. The do share a low level of intelligence, but that makes things all the more interesting. One thing is for sure, I would hate to be their neighbour Carl.

#3: Yakko, Wakko & Dot – Animaniacs

This madcap trio of hellraisers were shut away in the Warner Bros. studio lot vault for decades and upon being released, unleashed their manic brand of humour on the world… whether the world was ready for it or not. Interestingly, the Warner siblings were intended to be ducks, but were changed to dog-like beings in early production. The Warner’s stuck around for 99 episodes of chaotic fun, before disappearing back into their water tower home and leaving the world at peace.

Animaniacs Trio

#2: Phil, Stu & Alan – The Hangover

Played by Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, and Zach Galifianakis, respectively, this movie franchise shows just what can happen when you have a crazy night out in Las Vegas, Bangkok, and just about anywhere in the world. I always felt bad for Doug that he never gets to be part of the adventure. In each of the three movies, he’s pushed to the sidelines… once, quite literally! In the end, these three guys, who were acquaintances before the franchise, became legit friends thanks to the whole experience.

#1: The Three Stooges

Comedy just wouldn’t be the same without Larry, Curly, and Moe. Sure, the recent reboot of this franchise might not be great, but the original troupe were legends and have been ripped off and spoofed for decades. The Three Stooges began their iconic career in 1925 as a vaudeville act, before moving onto feature films. Since appearing on TV for the first time in 1958, their shorts have remained a staple of the airwaves to this day, and will make audiences laugh for years to come.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Three’s Company

Three's Company Shot

  • 0.5 oz Cognac
  • 0.5 oz Grand Marnier
  • 0.5 oz Kahlua
  • Garnish with an Orange Slice

Myself and Mrs. Sip make up our own triple threat, using an interchangeable member that simply hangs on to the awesomeness of our coattails. Honourable mentions go to Alvin and The Chipmunks; Huey, Dewey, and Louie; the Workaholics; and many more. In researching this article, I had to be very careful not to use the search term “best threesomes”… but I used it anyway!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3 Sips out of 5):
This shot tasted pretty good, largely thanks to the Grand Marnier’s delicious orange flavour. I’ll even throw some credit towards the Kahlua. The score was lowered because of the strong taste, something the decent flavours couldn’t make up for.

Portugal – Saint Valentine

A Pirate’s Life for Me

The Pirate Code was introduced by Bartolomeu Português of Portugal in the 17th century. From there, each captain adjusted the regulations to fit their desires and sometimes even changed the rules for each journey. Each crew member was then asked to sign an agreement ratifying the code, before swearing an oath of allegiance to the captain and ship. All the expected stuff was there, such as how to split any booty (wow, that came out much more sexually than I had intended) and what punishment was to be expected for abandoning the crew in times of battle. Let’s take a look at some of the more interesting items the code produced:

Article: Rights to fresh provisions and strong liquors, unless they become scarce

Nuts to the provisions, let’s go straight to the strong liquors! I’m sure an argument could be made, even if supplies ran low that you were simply trying to fend off scurvy and needed whatever booze was available. Granted, other ingredients are needed to fight the disease, but pirates wouldn’t have known that.

Pirate Code Guidelines

Article: Lights and candles are to be put out at eight o’clock at night… if any crew wants to continue drinking, it must be done on the open deck

Eight o’clock doesn’t seem very badass and not what I expected from buccaneers, but at least you can continue getting your drink on if you were so inclined. I would have expected pirates to stay up until at least 12, maybe even 13, singing songs of the sea and setting towns ablaze to light their parties.

Article: Not allowed to fight on the ship, but save it for land, using swords and pistols duel style

The pirates duel was kind of crazy. After their paces, they were allowed one shot with a loaded pistol and if that failed, it was a race back to the starting point where cutlasses were used until blood was drawn. That sounds like the makings of a hot new reality TV series, which I’ll soon put into production.

Article: To compensate any injured crewman, according to the severity of his injury

We’re always told that pirates were in it for themselves and nothing else, but this article proves they were willing to look after each other. A lost limb usually meant a payout of 600-800 Pieces of Eight, while more minor inflictions were judged on a case by case basis. Interestingly, in some codes, a right arm or leg was worth more than a left arm or leg… take that sinister ones. Hands, fingers, and even eyes were the least valuable body parts. Who needs their vision, right!?

Caribbean Pirate

Article: If a crewman betrays the ship, he will be marooned with one bottle of water, one bottle of powder, one weapon and one shot

I gotta say, I’m greatly disappointed that the pirates wouldn’t at least include a little flask of booze for the disowned crewman, but that just leaves more for those still aboard the ship. If I was the marooned pirate, I would ration that bottle of water to the very last drop, hoping some other ship passes and takes me into their crew.

Article: To be amorous with a woman without her consent should be punished by death

This kind of proves the Pirates of the Caribbean (where most of us have learned the entire extent of our pirate knowledge) women chasing scene all wrong. They say that there is no honour among thieves, but this may counter that theory, although the bad acts towards women probably still occurred regularly.

pirate-cat

Article: Whoever sees a sail first, shall receive the best pistol found aboard the vessel when plundered

This is like an epic game of ‘I spy with my little eye!’ Problem is most pirates were probably so out of their mind drunk that their blurred vision couldn’t win them this awesome prize, had they even wanted it. On a side note: I have to incorporate the word plunder into my vocabulary more regularly.

Article: Anyone drunk during pirating will be punished according to what the captain and majority of the crew see fit

This could end with the Sip Advisor walking the plank. It also begs the question: Is there any reason to be a pirate if you can’t be shitfaced most of the time? Being a pirate is about breaking the bonds that normal folks are tied to and going on adventures… and many of those adventures should be of the inebriated variety!

Portugal: Saint Valentine

Saint Valentine Martini

  • 1.5 oz White Rum
  • 0.5 oz Port
  • 0.5 oz Grand Marnier
  • Splash of Lime Juice
  • Garnish with Lime Wedge

In a perfect world, we would still live according to the Pirate Code and I would thrive and flourish in that society. I’m good at following the rules, as well as getting deep into drinking, making me a prime candidate to work my way up the pirate ladder and eventually becoming a captain of my own ship. Perhaps I should explore career options with today’s Somali pirates!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4.5 Sips out of 5):
This drink was strong (not too strong, mind you), but had a very nice taste. The citrus notes, such as Grand Marnier and Lime Juice were particularly pleasant, as was the Port. I actually used Cachaca as my Rum addition and I think that helped with the whole blend.

April 12 – Drunken Bunny

Bunny Style

It’s the season of the bunny… which means copious amounts of sex, right? Hmmm, apparently it just means lots of chocolate, jelly beans and other candy… I’ll take it! Here are the top five hippity hoppities (a colloquial term for rabbits):

#5: Br’er Rabbit – Song of the South

Ol’ Br’er Rabbit is always getting himself into trouble, which means the Sip Advisor has to bail him out and end up plummeting into the Splash Mountain briar patch, resulting in getting soaked. You know, sometimes I want to see Br’er Bear and Br’er Fox get their hands on the damn rabbit and tear him limb from limb. Together, we could celebrate with a jug of moonshine, some rabbit stew, and a barbecue cookout with all the trimmings. We could even watch Song of the South, providing we can find a copy of the banned film.

briarpatch

Why does Br’er Rabbit look happy to be thrown off a cliff into a briar patch!?

#4: Roger Rabbit – Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

You have to give a ton of respect to anyone (and I mean ANYONE) who can land the vivacious Jessica Rabbit. Sure, all Roger wants to do is play pattycake with her and that’s why I invented a sexual maneuver with the same moniker. Back to Double-R, I wonder if they’ll ever get around to doing the long-rumoured sequel to Who Framed Roger Rabbit? It’s taken more than two decades to sort things out, but producers don’t seem any closer to working on the prequel project that would apparently see Roger in his earlier days.

#3: Greg – Greg the Bunny

This adorable Fabricated-American isn’t just cute and cuddly… he’s naïve and innocent to boot. By chance, Greg joined the cast of Sweetknuckle Junction (inadvertently replacing his idol Rochester Rabbit), a children’s show akin to Sesame Street. The difference being that off-screen, his fellow puppets Warren the Ape, Count Blah, and others have a bad side that includes sex, drugs, and alcohol – sounds like fun, don’t it! Greg has to work hard to keep up with his cast mates, all while living the life of a second-class citizen among all the humanoids.

gregbunny

A meal with Gilbert Gottfried… Fabricated-Americans get all the lucky breaks!

#2: Babs and Buster Bunny – Tiny Toon Adventures

Babs and Buster, no relation, are a mischievous duo that head the crop of Acme Looniversity students and are looking to be the next generation of cartoon stars, following in the footsteps of the fabulous Looney Tunes gang. With school principal Bugs Bunny acting as their mentor, the two are the heir apparent to the Looney Tunes throne. Buster is Bugs’ intelligent, calculating side, while Babs represents Bugs’ manic, wild side. The couple comes together for a perfect mixture of mayhem. And I can’t be the only one who found Babs kind of attractive with her spunky attitude and sweetness. I mean, at least if you’re into animated femme fatales.

#1: Bugs Bunny – Looney Tunes

There’s no other way to say it: Bugs Bunny is an icon! His feuds with Daffy Duck, Elmer Fudd, Yosemite Sam, and so many others are legendary. The great thing about Bugs is that he’s not impervious to his own battles and doesn’t always end up on the winning side. Surprisingly, the creators of the character didn’t think it would be the smash Bugs ended up being. Bugs has entertained his way to being a symbol for the entire Warner Bros. company (well, him and that damn singing frog!) and is still used in numerous media today.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Drunken Bunny

Drunken Bunny Shot

  • 0.5 oz Orange Rum
  • 0.5 oz Blue Curacao
  • 0.5 oz Melon Liqueur
  • Top with Whip Cream
  • Garnish with Mini Eggs Bits

I have to give out some kudos to some bunnies that are best associated with company logos and mascots. This would include the Playboy Bunny (logo or girls, they’re all good), the Cadbury Bunny (I love me some crème and mini eggs), and the Energizer Bunny (we all wish we had its stamina). Which rabbit would you have liked to see shoehorned into this list? Happy Easter y’all!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
This is actually a cocktail recipe that I’ve adapted into a shooter, which I seem to have to do a lot around here! The liquid is delicious, although I had to combine White Rum and Grand Marnier to achieve the desired Orange Rum. The Mini Eggs Bits at the end of the drink were a very nice touch and were easy to crush up for the shooter.

Slovakia – Dragon Tea

Stimulating Statues

Every European country is chock full of history, monuments, and statues. Slovakia (particularly in the country’s capital Bratislava) is no different and has a collection of busts that are incredibly unique, bordering on bizarre. Most of the sculptures have their own name and backstory. Here is a look at some of those works and an examination of what they are telling us:

The Greeter

This friendly fella was known to walk the streets of Bratislava, dressed to the nines, and offer women flowers or songs as they went about their daily business. The original ladies’ man, he could often be heard saying “I kiss your hand,” in a variety of languages. While his real name was Ignác Lamár, he was known by the moniker Schöner Náci and received free food from many of the city’s restaurants. Here’s hoping that one day they make a statue of me holding doors open for people and getting angry when they don’t appreciate the gesture.

Greeter statue

The Sewer Man

This statue, dubbed Rubberneck (perhaps because of the accidents it causes when people are distracted by it while driving or walking) is the world’s first bust to show a person emerging from a sewer. Perhaps he had given up his search for the fabled Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, resulting in his exasperated look. I would also be despondent had my quest failed to turn up any leads. The sculpture has actually been decapitated twice by motorists, prompting city officials to create a sign warning passersby’s of the figure.

sewer statue

The Photographer

You can play celebrity for a day in Slovakia… providing you hang out in this alley for the entire time. I’m not sure if the artist was hoping to inspire some social commentary on the state of paparazzi stalkers or to just make people feel famous for a brief moment. I wonder if folks like Sean Penn and Alec Baldwin, known for their run-ins with photographers have made their way to Bratislava to slap around this statue and get some free therapy courtesy the artist and the Slovakian government. It might be worth the trip if it saves the life of one dirty paparazzo!

paparazzi statue

The Threesome

Well, I’m not exactly sure what’s going on here, but I definitely want in! Three naked chicks frolicking… hell yeah, let’s party! I really can’t describe the scene and would love to hear what the artist was aiming for. It looks like the chick on the right is in one of the those skydiving simulators, while the one in the middle is knee boarding (or perhaps performing other tasks that at best achieved at that level!) and the broad on the left is in the middle of a Matrix-style bomb explosion. I kind of want to use the structure for some hardcore parkour to tucker myself out.

threesome statue

The Soldier

Imagine that you’re just hanging out, enjoying a good rest on a bench and next you know, the infamous military midget Napoleon (or one of his men) shows up behind you. Apparently, they enjoy gags like that in Slovakia. For some reason, it has become a popular photo op in the city, although I don’t understand the appeal myself. When I travel, I’m more about experiences (usually involving a drink or three) rather than standing in front of various icons and buildings just to say that I’ve been there. Not to stomp on anybody that tours in that way, but it’s not what works for me.

Napoleon statue

Slovakia: Dragon Tea

Dragon Tea Cocktail

  • 1 oz Tatratea Forest Fruit
  • 0.75 Grand Marnier
  • 0.75 Chambord
  • Top with Cranberry Juice
  • Splash of Wildberry Juice
  • Dash of Lemon Juice
  • Garnish with Cranberries

Well, that wraps up our little jaunt through Slovakia. We took some interesting photos, met some intriguing people and drank some wonderful booze… that’s my kind of travelling!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
I have to say that the Tatratea website is kind of lame when looking for recipes to try with their liqueurs. If they want to send me a couple bottles of their product, I promise to invent a minimum of three rockin’ recipes with each spirit. Even online videos seem to exclude which ingredients to use or names of the cocktails being created. Very frustrating, indeed. As for this cocktail, it was very good. The flavours were nice and made for a pleasant martini.