Sip Trips 153: Market Madness

Christmas is rapidly approaching and the Sip Family has been busy. From Vancouver to New West to Langley, we’ve been all over the place in recent times, taking in as much of the holiday season as we can. Here’s what we’ve been up to:

We’re now a couple weeks into Storm Brewing’s 12 Fills of Christmas and the lineup thus far has been delicious and diverse. Week one combined the Must Be Christmas Grape Lambic and Christmas Tree Pilsner, followed by the Dark! The Herald Angel’s Sing CDA and Santa’s Christmas Spiced Ale for week two. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the month has in store. On one of my visits to get my fills, I also sampled their Eggnog Latte Stout, which was quite interesting.

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As for events, a couple weeks back we attended the Vancouver Christmas Market, where I enjoyed some liqueur tastings from Okanagan Spirits. I wasn’t really into the market this year, with us no longer living nearby. We get free tickets annually, so still checked it out, but I don’t know if that will be enough to draw me back next year.

What I enjoyed more, was our visit to Mahony & Sons prior to the Christmas Market. There, I ordered a couple pints of Stanley Park Layer Up Winter Wheat Ale – a wonderful beer for those who haven’t tried it yet – along with the pub’s very tasty Poutine. Everything was on happy hour pricing, making for even more merriment.

The next night, we participated in Disney Trivia at The Pint. Having had dinner at Chronic Tacos beforehand (I adore their Al Pastor Burrito), I was looking to get my drink on and that came in the form of a trio of pitchers, including two of the Whistler Chestnut Ale. The pitchers were on special at $16 each, but were only 50-ounce pours, rather than the traditional 60 ounces. As for the trivia, we didn’t fare so well, but it was still a fun evening.

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We wrapped the work week by visiting the New West Christmas Market. What was nice about this market is that there was no entry fee and it was largely housed under an overpass, keeping folks dry in the case of rain. That said, it got really busy by the time I arrived to join Mrs. Sip and the live band was loud, so chatting was difficult. We left a short time later, after downing a selection from Steel & Oak Brewing, which Mrs. Sip tells me she thinks was their Dark Lager.

The next night, Mrs. Sip and I hosted a group of friends for a classic turkey dinner. This was the first time we’d ever cooked a turkey on our own and I have to say the experience was mostly positive, save for a few rookie mistakes and a lot of Google searches. It also gave us a whole new respect for the work our families have done when preparing dinners in the past. For the party, we shared our latest Storm fills, as well as the Whistler Winter Dunkel four-pack I picked up. This is the first time I’ve seen the scrumptious beer that tastes like a Terry’s Chocolate Orange in any format other than a bomber-sized bottle.

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We closed the weekend with a visit to Township 7 Winery in Langley for their Member Open House. I spent most of the time chasing Baby Sip throughout the tasting room, but did note the event provided a very generous serving of snacks and wines for the members.

The Sip Advisor is now on holiday break and there will be much mischief to get up to, as we have a Canucks game this weekend and then all the fun that Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day usually offer up. It’s gonna get boozy!

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July 11 – Cracked Chandelier

Smash and Grab

I think we all enjoy to see a little chaos and destruction… it’s just human nature. With that in mind, I started thinking of the best things to see broken or smashed, preferably tossed off of skyscrapers like David Letterman used to do on his talk show. Perhaps he still does. I don’t know, I’m usually passed out by then, dreaming up these wonderful articles!

Chandelier

One of the greatest scenes in media history is to see a chandelier fall from great heights, splintering into thousands of pieces when it comes to hit the floor below. When it falls on top of a person, the stakes are raised even higher. Of course, the most famous crashing chandelier has to be from Phantom of the Opera, when the ghastly Phantom sabotages the opera’s chandelier, wreaking havoc as only he can.

Champagne Waterfall

On my most recent cruise vacation, I was mere minutes away from actually getting to see this remarkable moment. When our group showed up for the traditional formal dinner and champagne waterfall, all we were treated with was cruise staff cleaning up the wreckage of shattered glass. Apparently the ship had titled just a little too much and down came the pyramid.

Watermelon

While people starve to death around the world, prop comic Gallagher started a revolution, smashing perfectly good to eat fruit in the name of entertainment. His ‘Sledge-O-Matic’ mallet became legendary and with every swing, audiences ate up (sometimes literally) the results of his destruction. I’m salivating over the watermelon and the thoughts of the things I could do with my own Sledge-O-Matic. Do you think it would work for muddling!?

Tank

These beastly vehicles are supposed to be practically indestructible. That doesn’t mean we can’t have some fun trying to wreck them to the nth degree! I think the dude (known as Tank Man… what a wicked name!) from the infamous Tiananmen Square Massacre, who stood defiant in front of the tanks going to break up the student protest, should be our leader, gaining further vengeance on the machine he seems to have some sort of ominous power over.

Slurpee Machine

I can only imagine the rainbow that would be painted if a fully stocked (we’re talking all eight flavours) Slurpee machine was dropped from extraordinary heights onto the hard cold ground below. Would you be willing to drink whatever concoction was formed by the carnage? I would certainly give it a shot, providing I could dump a little liquid sunshine into the mix, in the form of a high-alcohol spirit!

Slurpee Explosion

Entire Turkey Dinner

Most people say that their family dinners turn into complete nightmares when people start drinking and yapping and stirring up old issues. I say to hell with the dinner, let’s just take the whole shebang and toss it off a rooftop. Imagine the delight of passersby having to dodge gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and the big bird itself. Sounds like a ton of fun to me and a wonderful way to give back to society!

Christmas Tree/Pumpkin

In a similar vein to the turkey dinner above, a tradition at Ma and Pa Sip’s place is to get rid of the ol’ Christmas tree and Halloween pumpkins by launching them off the front balcony. One year, Mrs. Sip took part in the pumpkin ritual and when she asked if she was supposed to get it in the garbage can below, I wise-assedly said “uh, no”. The result was a pumpkin hurled directly at Pa Sip, who had to react quickly not to be victimized by his future daughter-in-law.

Drink #192: Cracked Chandelier

Cracked Chandelier Drink Recipe

  • 1.5 oz Sambuca
  • 1.5 oz White Rum
  • Top with Lemon-Lime Soda
  • Garnish with Licorice Candies

Surely, there are items I’ve neglected and you should let me know of my egregious errors. Take me to task. Make me atone for my transgressions. I dare you… no, I double dog dare you. Yeah, it’s that serious!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
I remember serving this drink at one of the first family functions I bartended and it didn’t go over great with most people… even those who have a fondness for Sambuca. Still, I was willing to try it again. The sour from the Soda and Lime Wedges compliment the sweet and licorice taste of the Sambuca. I don’t think this cocktail will work for everyone, but for my acquired palate, it was enjoyable.