Flavour Revolution – Strawberry

Decreased Desires

Nothing beats a plate of chocolate-covered strawberries to celebrate a romantic occasion. There’s also a tradition in France of giving strawberries and cream to newly married couples, as an aphrodisiac. Normally, in this case, we’d take a look at aphrodisiacs out there, but I’ve already written an article on that subject. Therefore, we’re going to flip the script and look at the aphrodisiac’s lesser known (and lesser liked) sibling, the anaphrodisiac… translation: things that will kill your mojo!

Graham Crackers – I’ve mentioned in a previous article how Graham crackers were invented by Sylvester Graham, a Presbyterian minister, who believed that the crackers would suppress sexual urges. Then, some genius got the great idea to throw marshmallows and chocolate on top, funkifying them into smores and the rest of campfire loving is history!

Teddy Grahams

Hops – Bad news for IPA beer fans… although I have my doubts about this one, as I know a lot of beer drinkers that don’t really lose their sexual charge after drinking all night. That said, all alcohol can decrease one’s desires, just based on the drug being a depressant. Why hops, in particular, gets such a bad rap is beyond me.

Corn Flakes – If I was to choose a cereal to get down with, it would probably be something along the lines of Cookie Crisp or Count Chocula. Corn Flakes were invented by Dr. John Harvey Kellogg to suppress libido. The good doctor believed that flavourful food led to flamed loins and so he created an incredibly boring product. They should try using this in their advertising material today. That would work real well.

Soy – Used by monks to suppress their naughty feelings – probably a good thing, given their surrounded by only other monks – soy, in large quantities, is said to kill one’s sex drive. I do like using soy in cooking stirfrys and as a sauce for various dishes, but I may have to be cautious with it now. I mean, who wants a sushi outing to not eventually lead to carnal pleasures!

soy-milk

Mint – What’s funny here, is that mints are meant to lead to sexual attraction (or so the ads tell us), as fresh breath is the starting point to any close encounter. Menthol, however, has actually been proven to lower testosterone. Bad breath, it is!

Cilantro – I’ve never been a huge fan of cilantro – if it’s in a dish, fine, but I’m not going to necessarily search it out – and apparently that’s a good thing. It’s ironic that cilantro is used in many exotic dishes and those are the ones the likes of Dr. Kellogg and Minister Graham believed led to unsavoury desires.

Black Licorice – I don’t want to sound like a candy racist, but why do all the worst candies come in the colour black? I’m talking jujubes, jelly beans, licorice, etc. I’ve never been a fan of black licorice, but do like the red variety. I’m just going to pretend that red licorice is a completely separate strain of the plant and is therefore not exempt from the Sip Advisor’s snack drawer.

blacklicorice

Granola – Today’s modern day granola bars, with their phallic shape (don’t forget the optional chocolate covering!), should be changing the way we view granola, but their original intention was much like Corn Flakes and Graham Crackers, meant to keep thoughts pure and wholesome. Then they started adding all the different flavours to the bars and even the cereal and all hell broke loose!

Cheese – I include this one only as a way to shame Mrs. Sip and all her cheese-loving friends. Yes, the Sip Advisor has begun to dabble in some cheese arts, but nowhere near to the degree as my peers. And that’s why the Sip Advisor is the world’s greatest lover… voted this for many consecutive years in popular surveys. It’s all because of the anti-cheese movement, my little sippers.

Flavour Revolution: Thigh High

Thigh High Martini

There’s even a program out there, looking to help folks reduce their sex drive. These monsters believe that they will help users have deeper relationships and a clearer mind. Where’s the joy in all of that!?

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4.5 Sips out of 5):
There are Strawberry Liqueur recipes called Chocolate-Covered Strawberry and Aphrodisiac, but those seemed too easy to use in this post. Therefore, I chose a drink that gets the Sip Advisor’s mojo rising! This martini was a little sweeter than either Mrs. Sip or me would prefer, but it was very tasty and would be perfect as a dessert cocktail and for those in your life that enjoy the sweeter things in life!

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Flavour Revolution – Rhubarb

Sweet Relief

Well, this article might get a little dicey, so viewer’s discretion is advised. Simply put, rhubarb contains a number of laxative properties, which somehow got me thinking of the greatest laxative scenes in movies. Don’t ask me to explain how my mind works… I don’t get it, either. Well, might as well get this story started:

Dumb & Dumber

After Lloyd discovers that his best friend Harry is going out with the girl he has a massive crush on, Lloyd decides to spike Harry’s drink with a laxative… and lots of it! En route to another date, Harry starts to feel a rumble in his tummy. When he arrives at Mary Swanson’s home, Harry is in serious need of a washroom. He does his business, but the hilarity goes up another couple notches when it’s revealed that the toilet Harry has been using is broken. This begs the question: What would you do!? It’s a question that has haunted the Sip Advisor and many I know for two decades. Answers may vary, but in the end, you’d have to assume that things would get much worse, before they got any better.

American Pie

Poor, poor Finch. The teen has made it his mission to never use the school washrooms, fearing how unhygienic they might be. In fact, if he has the urge to use the facilities, he runs home during the break between classes to do his business. Finch’s plans go awry when Stifler spikes his drink with a laxative, angry that girls throughout the school are turning him down for a date to the prom, hoping Finch will ask them. Like Harry and the broken toilet in Dumb & Dumber, Finch can’t seem to buy a break, getting tricked into using the girl’s washroom to relieve himself. This results in no date at all for Finch, but he does get back at Stifler by having sex with his mom. Sounds like a fair trade!

Van Wilder

There is nothing worse than desperately needing the use of a bathroom, when you aren’t able to access one or have other obstacles in your way. This plays into a scene in Van Wilder when Gwen Pearson (Tara Reid) slips some laxatives into her boyfriend Richard’s drink, upon learning that he cheated on her and got Van Wilder in some hot water with the school and police. While writing an exam, the symptoms begin to hit and things go from bad to worse as Richard races through the test and tries in vain to reach a toilet. The guy eventually uses a garbage can (hey, things could have been worse), while still in the public eye. That sounds like an apt punishment for betrayal!

Flavour Revolution: Royal Blush

Royal Blush Cocktail

  • Muddle Strawberries
  • 1.5 oz Rhubarb Tea Liqueur
  • Top with Club Soda
  • Dash of Grenadine
  • Garnish with a Strawberry Slice

There’s actually an area known as the Rhubarb Triangle in the West Yorkshire area of England. I only hope they’ve constructed enough washrooms in the zone to make sure any visitors are covered, should they imbibe in rhubarb treats.

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
This was a pretty good cocktail, one of the drink ideas found on those little bottle attachments that I love so much. Although I hate when they bother to include a little recipe booklet and all the options are plain and suck. I mean, why bother. The Rhubarb Tea Liqueur was not like this. Anyhoo, I believe this is the first time the Sip Advisor has ever used Rhubarb anything and it was a hit. Ma Sip is already looking to make this her summer cocktail, later this year.

May 10 – Blushing Lady

Motherly Love

Tomorrow is Mother’s Day and every single little sipper out there in Sip Nation better be doing something special for their mom. I, personally know the way to Ma Sip’s heart is paved with wine… know your audience, am I right!? To show each and every one of you just how awesome your mom probably is, here are the top five worst mothers:

#5: Lois Wilkerson – Malcolm in the Middle

She’s driven one child to reform school and the three others that still live at home (with a fifth child eventually joining the fray) are wilder than a pack of hyenas. It’s a miracle that Malcolm emerged as a gifted student, although a couple of his other brothers are also intelligent, but use their smarts in other realms. It was rare to see Lois not shouting at the kids or disciplining them. An interesting tidbit about Malcolm in the Middle is that the writers worked very hard to conceal the family’s surname throughout the series, going so far as to have Francis drop his nametag at one point and for the audience to see it say “Nolastname.”

Lois Fate

#4: Cersei Lannister – Game of Thrones

Parents are often punished for the crimes of their children and anyone who can produce such an awful, sadomasochistic spawn, such as Joffrey Baratheon, has to have their own issues… like, I don’t know, being in an incestuous relationship with your brother. Oddly, her other son Tommen is the complete opposite to Joffrey, so perhaps he was just a bad apple (there’s one in every bunch). Cersei is certainly a wicked woman, not entirely surprising given her father’s actions and child rearing skills, which include demoralizing his brood every chance he gets and running their lives through power and intimidation.

#3: Peggy Bundy – Married with Children

Peggy’s greatest crime as a mother is that she just doesn’t care about her offspring and is too pre-occupied with spending all of the family’s money on treats for herself, rather than groceries, clothes, and the other needs of her husband and children. Her lack of a job throughout a vast majority of the show’s long run and preference for staying at home and watching Oprah while chowing down on bonbons shows just how lazy she is. Add in her disdain for cooking and cleaning and you have a mom who isn’t really paying her dues for the family.

Peg Bundy

#2: Malory Archer – Archer

Sterling Archer spent most of his life being raised by Woodhouse, his live-in caretaker, and being sent to boarding school, while his mother’s career as an international operative flourished. Malory even left Sterling stranded in a train station one Christmas Eve, as he was trying to make his way home from school for the holidays. In a case fit for the Maury Show, Malory is unsure of who Sterling’s father is and with a couple of options, made up a fictionalized dad, complete with backstory and naval honours. Despite her lack of affection for her son, Malory has made sure that Sterling has been dependent on her for most of his adult life.

#1: Lucille Bluth – Arrested Development

Lucille is really only loved by one of her children and even Buster has his moments where he can’t stand the nasty, alcoholic matriarch of the Bluth family. She is quick to criticize all of her kin (also including Gob, Lindsay, and Michael) and also has a habit of turning them against each other. Most of the messes the Bluth family wind up in is caused by Lucille, particularly her pilfering of the family company’s funds to support her lavish lifestyle. Played by Jessica Walters, who also provides the voice for Malory Archer, it would seem this lady has the market cornered on awful mother characters… bet she’s nice in real life, though.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Blushing Lady

Blushing Lady Shot

  • Rim glass with Sugar
  • 0.5 oz Vodka
  • 0.5 oz PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur
  • Splash of Grapefruit Juice
  • Garnish with a Strawberry Slice

Perhaps next year, we’ll take a look at the flip side of this coin, the warm and loving mothers (your Marge Simpson’s, Kitty Forman’s, etc. of the world) to further provide examples of how to be a great mom. Either that, or we’ll examine the reality TV “real life” moms out there that are cringe worthy with every act they commit. Happy Mother’s Day to all the lovely ladies out there that deserve the title!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
Yet another cocktail I’ve had to convert into a shot… clearly there are some noticeable voids in the mixology world that the Sip Advisor will have to fill! This shot was pretty good with a bitter aftertaste from the Grapefruit Juice. That’s what kind of takes the rating down a little.

Australia – Stormy Weather

Criminal Crunch

Not many countries start off as another nation’s penal colony. Australia is by far the most recognized of these lands and somehow, the British castoffs sent there turned Australia into one of the most wonderful places in the world to visit, live, and love. Let’s take a look at some of the more notable convicts to be shipped down under and how they helped build the great nation of Australia:

Australia Cell Blocks

William Bland

While I believe government to be largely useless, it is a necessary evil when building a new society. Bland was a former naval surgeon who found himself in Australia because he killed a man in a duel… seems like a fair and completely reasonable way to settle an argument. Bland eventually held a seat in Australia’s legislative assembly, an early example of government criminality.

William Henry Groom

Groom followed a path similar to Bland, going from prisoner to member of the inaugural Australian Parliament. I guess you can’t fault a penal colony for having members of its government being former convicts. Sadly, Groom died shortly after his appointment and never got to fully enjoy the perks of being an elected official (money, power, drugs… the Rob Ford special!).

James Squire

Now, here’s a guy who deserves massive recognition for his contributions to early Australia society. Squire was one of the original convicts to come over to Australia and being first was a recurrent theme for him. He later became the country’s first brewer and brands like Tooheys and Victoria Bitter have him to thank their legacy. Showing the importance of alcohol in any society, Squire’s death in 1822 spawned the biggest funeral held in the colony days.

VB Kangaroo

Jørgen Jørgensen

Not many folks can claim to be the ruler of Iceland, but Jørgensen was one of those peeps. He arrested the Danish Governor (almost as bad as The Walking Dead’s Governor), with intentions of giving Iceland their freedom, but that was squashed by Denmark. The eccentric adventurer, as Jørgensen’s been described, was a spy for a spell for the UK, translating documents and working throughout France and Germany. He wound up a convict in Australia and upon his release explored Tasmania.

William Chopin

This fella kind of went full circle, as he flourished working in a prison hospital and went into chemistry after receiving his ticket of leave. Unfotunately, his skills as a chemist landed him back in jail later, as he went into the illegal abortion business. He was the ‘chemist gone bad’ centuries before Breaking Bad ever aired.

John Kelly

Sometimes it takes a generation to make your mark on society, as is the case for John Kelly, whose son Ned gained notoriety as a Robin Hood-type folk hero, battling the establishment with his band of not-so-merry men (colloquially referred to as Kelly’s gang, but that’s such a harsh term) and becoming an outlaw in the process. Ned Kelly was later executed for his crimes, but his legend has grown thanks to movies starring Mick Jagger and Heath Ledger. He’s even featured on an Irish stamp.

Ned Kelly

John Davies

As a writer, I believe information (as well as entertainment) is essential in getting a nation rolling. After his release from prison, Davies co-founded The Mercury newspaper in 1854. The daily publication, servicing Hobart, Tasmania, still exists to this day. The company remained in the Davies family until 1988 when it was taken over by what is now News Corp Australia.

James Ruse

Without food, we’re all screwed… well, except perhaps Ghandi. Anyway, Ruse was responsible for the first successful wheat harvest in New South Wales (where the first convict ships landed to settle). Today, an Agricultural High School (the Aussies really push you to choose your career path early) is named after him and students spend their days riding tractors and shucking corn.

Henry Kable

While the world is always becoming more litigious, to have dropped the first lawsuit on a nation is quite the feat. Kable’s civil suit was over a parcel of goods to be given to he and his wife upon arrival at the Australian penal colony, but it was stolen en route. Kable successfully sued the ship’s captain for £15, even more impressive given prisoners were considered dead by law at the time and had no rights. It’s no surprise then, that Kable later became a wealthy businessman, probably turning his legal windfall into a fortune.

Lawsuit

Robert Sidaway

What is a society without entertainment? Sidaway opened Australia’s first theatre (and we’re not talking about one of those talking pictures types), in Sydney, in 1796. Back then, you could pay for seats using money, flour, meat, or alcohol. If alcohol was a currency nowadays, I’d be filthy rich (instead of just filthy!). The theatre featured performances of Shakespearean and other English works, but was shut down by authorities in 1800, as it was deemed a corrupting influence.

Mary Wade

Wade was the youngest female convict shipped away, leaving the UK for Australia at only 11 years old. By the time she passed away at age 82, she had 21 children and more than 300 descendants, leaving a family tree that now adds up to tens of thousands and includes former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd. Now that, my little sippers, is a legacy.

Australia: Stormy Weather

Stormy Weather Drink Recipe

  • 1.5 oz Shiraz/Syrah Wine
  • 1.5 oz Dark Rum
  • Splash of Lime Juice
  • Dash of Simple Syrup
  • Float Ginger Ale
  • Garnish with a Strawberry Slice and Raspberry

Coming from a lineage of scoundrels and miscreants, that explains the likes of Mel Gibson and Russell Crowe, but not Steve Irwin, Crocodile Dundee, and others of that ilk. Australia, forever mystifying outside observers with their citizen’s contrasting personality traits… I think I just came up with a new tagline for the country!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
Another good Shiraz/Syrah cocktail has me really enjoying the Little Penguin Wine. The Ginger Ale was solid, as usual, and of particular pleasure was the Appleton Rum I used. You could get a hint of it with each sip and it was an absolutely delicious touch to the rest of the recipe.

July 28 – The Ultimate Warrior

Battle Royal

The TV show Deadliest Warrior takes a look at hypothetical battles between ancient armies, modern day forces, and ruthless leaders. The fine folks running the program have lent me their software, in exchange for my Nintendo Wii, and I’ve decided to run some data. Here are a few Deadliest Warrior simulations I’ve run through their super computer:

Muppets vs. American Gladiators

On paper, this looks to be a no-brainer, but in reality, while the American Gladiators are hulking, intimidating foes, you really can’t hurt a Muppet. Muppets are practically invincible and you have to figure that the Gladiators will tire eventually, especially with the Muppets constantly cracking jokes – some good, some awful.
Winner: Muppets – No matter how many times the American Gladiators shot at the Muppets with their patented tennis ball cannon or smacked the likes of Kermit, Gonzo and Fozzy with jousting sticks, the persistent Muppets continued to attack. In particular, Animal was a brave and wild soldier, attacking the Gladiators with total disregard for his own well-being.

Animal

Skeletons vs. Monkeys

The real issue here is whether or not skeletons are prone to pain. Can you kill what is already dead? I say, hypothetically yes. Monkey weaponry is a mixed bag of tactics. There is, of course, the dung bomb, as well as the much-feared fury attack. Skeletons, however, are just creepy and can move around in an unfathomable manner.
Winner: The monkeys’ ability to attack and retreat gives them the edge in this close battle.

Cats vs. Jelly Beans

Cats may be lazy and easily distracted, but they also have a killer instinct when searching for “gifts” for their owners. Jelly beans are perhaps even lazier than kitties, just lying there, waiting to be eaten. Much like a possum, however, a jelly bean’s greatest asset is lying in wait and delivering sometimes grotesque flavours upon its attacker. Unless the jelly bean is tuna-flavoured, it may have an advantage on cats.
Winner: Jelly Beans – In a battle of who cares less, shockingly kittens do, and the last standing–as the cats pursue other interests like strings and bouncing balls–is the inanimate candy.

Hockey Players vs. Decepticons

On one hand, hockey players are some of the toughest dudes on the planet, known for playing through serious injury and never hesitating to sacrifice their body, en route to championship glory. On the other hand, the Decepticons are freakin’ robots… and evil robots, at that. Although given how some hockey players answer media questions, that depiction might not be solely for the Transformers.
Winner: I have to side with the hockey players. If Shia Labeouf can take on the Decepticons, is easy to fathom some of hockey’s greatest goons standing a chance, too.

hanson-bros

Fast Food Servers vs. Jedis

I mean sure, one side has mind-power abilities and weapons that can slice through human flesh, but the other side are freakin’ Jedis! See what I did there… totally suckered you all in. The Jedis have a distinct advantage going into this battle, but never underestimate a slacker who holds you meal’s fate in his hands. Fast food servers can over season it, under cook it, or worst of all, spit on it!
Winner: I gotta give the W to the Jedis thanks to leadership from puppets like Yoda and Samuel L. Jackson.

Moonshiners vs. Birdwatchers

While moonshiners have the weaponry and will defend their stash to the death, birdwatchers are patient and can wait for unbelievable amounts of time prior to stealthy strikes. You also have to figure that the moonshiners will be plastered and that could alter their abilities on the battlefield.
Winner: The moonshiners get the duke for two reasons: shotguns trump binoculars and who the hell can ever have any respect for people who care about birds!

Drink #209: The Ultimate Warrior (A Sip Advisor Original Recipe)

Ultimate Warrior Cocktail

  • Rim glass with Sprinkles
  • 0.5 oz Jagermeister
  • 0.5 oz Wiser’s Spiced Whiskey
  • 0.5 oz Crowberry Frost Liqueur
  • Top with Root Beer

Are there any other battles you want me to run through the simulator, before I return the Deadliest Warrior computer to its rightful owner? If you can manage to make me laugh, I’ll have cocktail in your honour!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
I picked liquors that I felt fell under the “warrior” motif. Jagermeister and Wiser’s both run ads about earning the right to drink their spirits and Crowberry Frost Liqueur makes me think of Game of Thrones (Winter is coming, you know). Root Beer was my pick for mixer because, let’s be honest, it is above and beyond the most manly soft drink in existence. The Sprinkles came to mind when thinking about former wrestling star The Ultimate Warrior’s face paint. Put it all together and you have one hell of a cocktail!