Mixer Mania #15 – Going Nutty

The Sip Advisor feels bad for folks with a peanut allergy. I don’t know how I’d cope with existence if I wasn’t able to enjoy the legume. Not to rub salt in the wound, but here are my favourite peanut-based products that they’re missing out on:

Peanut Butter

Of the crunchy variety, of course, this glorious spread is best enjoyed in making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. I have also come to like using the substance on crackers, as well as mixing it with a handful of Honey Nut Cheerios.

Trail Mix

The Sip Advisor is a trail mix fiend, particularly of the variation that includes Smarties or some other chocolate treat to complete the experience of salty nuts (peanuts, cashews, almonds) and raisins. That sweet touch is just right to balance the blend.

Trail Mix

Chocolate Bars

Among the peanut-packed confections I enjoy are Reese Peanut Butter Cups, Pay Day, Take 5, Snickers, Oh Henry!, Peanut M&Ms (as well as other chocolate-covered peanuts), and Butterfinger. Did you know, the Reese behind Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups was Harry Burnett “H.B.” Reese, who invented the treat in 1928. Amazingly, he did this while raising 16 children!

Peanuts

Although I adore potato chips, during times while I’ve tried laying off the snack, I have often relied on peanuts to get my salt fix. Whether that be through barbecue, honey roasted, or mesquite mustard-flavoured releases, it gets the job done.

Cookies

There are few things as satisfying than a fresh-out-of-the-oven peanut butter cookie. If you add chocolate chips to the cookie, you’re in heaven. I have never tried to add jam, however, so this may be a future experiment.

Peanut Butter Cookies

Alcohol

Whether it be a Peanut Butter Stout or Van Gogh PB&J Vodka, I welcome peanuts in liquid form. One of my most favourite cocktails of all time used a peanut liqueur and it was to die for. As for nut-based brews, I’m always in for a pint… or pitcher… or keg!

Asian Dishes

I’m totally into menu items that incorporate peanuts into it for a little crunch or flavour. This includes Japanese Gomaae (spinach salad with peanut sauce) and Chinese Kung Pao Chicken. Most recently, the Sip Advisor has greatly enjoyed the Hunan Kung Pao meal at Earl’s Restaurants.

Mixer Mania #15: Peanutty Buddy

Peanutty Buddy.JPG

  • Rim glass with Peanut Butter & Jelly
  • 1.5 oz Frangelico
  • 1 oz Crème de Cacao
  • Top with Peanut Butter & Jelly Soda
  • Splash of Milk

In wrapping up, is there anything peanut-based that the Sip Advisor doesn’t like? Well, I’m not a fan of peanut brittle and I’d rather not have shelled peanuts because of the effort it takes just to get two little bits out, not to mention the resulting mess. That’s about it, I’d say.

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (2.5 Sips out of 5):
I can’t believe how hard it is to find any cocktail recipes for the Lester’s Fixins Peanut Butter & Jelly Soda. I did find this concoction and altered it to suit my needs, removing the Lemon-Lime Soda and chunk of Peanut Butter in favour of the PB&J Soda, while also lowering the milk content. The drink wasn’t offensive in any way, but there just wasn’t much of a flavour profile at all.

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July 10 – Snickertini

Chocolate on My Mind

Chocolate bars are enticing enough on their own, but a good slogan can really grab your attention and steer you towards that product in particular. Here are some of the best chocolate bar catchphrases:

M&M’s – “Melts in your mouth, not in your hands!”

A great slogan that has also been lampooned in many sexual contexts, as civilization becomes filthier with each passing day. While I’m a Smarties man myself, when it comes to the milk chocolate varieties between the two companies I like that M&M’s has gone on to experiment and make a number of different flavour options. M&M Peanuts and M&M Pretzels have to be among my preferred chocolate adaptations.

M&Ms

Butterfinger – “Nobody better lay a finger on my Butterfinger!”

This catchphrase dates back to when Bart Simpson was the spokesperson for the treat. Commercials usually featured Homer trying to enjoy the chocolate bar, only for things to go tragically wrong for the poor lug. When the contract between the show and Butterfinger was terminated, The Simpsons writers took a few shots at the chocolate bar, including it not being flammable, with Chief Wiggum stating, “Even the fire doesn’t want them.”

Twix – “Two for me, none for you!”

Somehow, Mrs. Sip never got the memo Twix was sending out, as she always thinks the two bars are perfect to split. To that, I say “Only on date nights!” The other 364 days of the year, both bars better be going down my gullet. There’s just something about chocolate, caramel and cookie that work together so perfectly and keep me coming back for more.

Snickers – “Hungry? Why wait?” / “You’re not you when you’re hungry…”

Snickers is one of my favourite chocolate bars (hence the push for today’s martini) and the company has also put out some solid ads. I particularly like the “You’re not you when you’re hungry …” campaign, which has featured Joe Pesci, Bobcat Goldthwait and Robin Williams, among others. I’ve even eaten a Snickers bar with a fork and knife, first shown on Seinfeld… it’s the only way to truly enjoy it!

Snickers

Kit Kat – “Have a break, have a Kit Kat.” / “Gimme a break!”

According to Mrs. Sip, this is another treat that’s perfect for sharing… just like McDonalds fries, beer, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, etc. She’s a freakin’ mooch is what she is. I get my revenge, though, when I inform her that she is in fact perfect for sharing and if she wants anymore of my god damn Kit Kat, she better be willing to even things up on her end!

Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups – “There’s no wrong way to eat a Reese’s!”

I’m pretty sure I could find a couple ways, actually! Did they consider things like eating while upside down, which would certainly a choking risk? How about while swimming, getting chocolate and peanut butter contamination in the pool? On the toilet doesn’t seem very hygienic, either. And I won’t even delve into the dirty part of my mind, which sadly takes up over 80% of me noggin’.

Reese's Peanut Butter Cups

Mars – “A Mars a day helps you work, rest and play.”

It also helps diabetes come visit a little sooner than originally expected! I guess if you’re actually following the work, rest, and play mantra you might be okay with a chocolate bar each day, but wouldn’t you want some variety mixed in there? Granted, Mars is a pretty decent treat, but I wouldn’t want to commit all my resources to one basket. I’m a man of simple, but varied pleasures!

Oh Henry! – “Oh hungry? Oh Henry!”

Nobody knows exactly where the chocolate bar’s name came from, but it has featured in everything from the All in the Family TV series, to being thrown on the field every time slugger Henry Rodriguez hit a homerun. When I am hungry and craving a snack, Oh Henry is one of my desired chocolate bars, thanks to its blend of peanuts, caramel and nougat.

Drink #191: Snickertini

july 10

  • Decorate glass with Caramel Syrup
  • 1.5 oz Vodka
  • 0.5 oz Bailey’s Irish Crème
  • 0.5 oz Chocolate Liqueur
  • 0.5 oz Amaretto
  • Splash of Milk
  • Garnish with Snickers Stir Stick

As much as I enjoy chocolate bars, I have to say that drinking them also satisfies my sweet tooth. Give it a shot next time you’re craving a bar and see if it works in quelling the uprising in your stomach!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
This martini is decent, but some sips can be strong. The full Snickers bar bumps it up the extra .5 point, even if Mrs. Sip didn’t want me to plunk it into the cocktail. If you’re going to try the Caramel Syrup spiral, make sure you have a bottle of the stuff that can actually get into the glass! Thanks to some improvisation we got something that looked photogenic enough, despite our bottle issue.

 

February 12 – Skor Bar

He Shoots, He Skors

There are a number of drinks named after popular chocolate bars. Today we enjoy the Skor Bar cocktail and we learn what some of The Sip Advisor’s favourite chocolate treats are:

Chocolate PayDay

The Chocolate PayDay bar has become a unicorn of sorts for myself and Mrs. Sip. We found it once, in a hotel vending machine. It was the last bar of its type in the machine and we’ve never seen it again. It took the classicly awesome PayDay bar – salted peanuts held together by chewy caramel – and covered it with chocolate. Had I not seen the bar with a witness, I’d begin to wonder if my years of drinking were taking a toll on the ol’ noggin.

Chocolate PayDay

Wunderbar

The Wunderbar is a favourite shareable for me and the little lady. Hell, she thinks every chocolate bar is a shareable… and don’t even get me started on our long standing McDonalds’ fries dispute (if I knew you were going to eat half of my fries, I would have ordered the larger size!!!). But I digress. I like to accuse her of eating more than her fair share of the chocolate bar and then she leaves me more the next time. It’s the ol’ bait and switch, executed to perfection!

Twix

Twix is another perfect “sharing” bar that brings out the Cookie Monster in me. I hate when chocolate bars are hard to share, like what do you do with the third peanut butter cup (note: in the United States, packages come with two cups, but in Canada, there’s three… yup, we’re better! …never mind the fact that you can probably buy two U.S. 2-packs for the price of one Canadian 3-pack). Obviously, you can break the third cup in half, but then your fingers get all chocolatey and delicious and such. Perfect for wiping on your loved one’s finest clothing.

Snickers

I like the new line of Snickers “you’re not you when you’re hungry” commercials, as it’s always nice to see Joe Pesci in front of the camera again. Mrs. Sip isn’t a fan of Snickers bars, so I get this one all to myself! She doesn’t like Oh Henry!, either, so I bet you can guess which treats are well-stocked at the Sip Advisor offices… that’s right, not these ones. These are the delicacies I hide around the house – toilet tank, recycle bin, among the DVD collection – for when I’m not acting myself.

Snickers

Toblerone

They were 3-D first and we have to thank them for that. While travelling through Switzerland a handful of years ago, it seemed we were buying Toblerone bars like they were going out of style. When we took the trip up Jungfrau Mountain, we made sure to have this wonderful chocolate on hand, as eating some can actually help you adjust to the altitude. Either that or you need to down some serious wobbly-pops.

Drink #43: Skor Bar Cocktail

Skor Bar Drink Recipe

  • Rim glass with Skor bits
  • 1 oz Irish Crème (I used Bailey’s)
  • 1 oz Kahlua (or Frangelico for a twist)
  • 1 oz Butterscotch Schnapps
  • 1 oz Crème de Cacao

Everybody has their favourite chocolate bar… what’s yours? I know it’s a hard choice to narrow down. Maybe it’s easier to pick one you hate. It is Fat Tuesday today, so make sure to enjoy as many bars (chocolate or otherwise), guilt-free, as possible!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
This actually tasted like a Skor Bar. I know that’s how it’s advertised, but sometimes the results don’t match the name. Butterscotch Schnapps and Crème de Cacao make an amazing pair and the Skor Bit rim was a lot of fun, too.