Mixer Mania #38 – In the Face of Danger

Sometimes, grapefruits are used to describe a person’s bravery… as in that dude has some huge grapefruits on him. Today we look at some of the most courageous actions the Sip Advisor has taken in his life. While none were earth shattering, they helped form the person I am today:

Kidney Conundrum

Moving in a somewhat chronological order, when the Sip Advisor was 12, I had my right kidney removed, as it was not functioning properly. Major surgery when you’re that young can be hard, but it’s also a blessing to have the issue dealt with early on, before it does even more damage. I think I took the whole thing pretty well and the scar can provide an interesting talking point.

Kidney Operation.jpg

Asking Mrs. Sip Out

On mutual family trips to Disneyland, I mustered all the swagger I could and asked Mrs. Sip out on a date in front of Cinderella’s Castle during the nightly fireworks extravaganza. The moment was perfect and she couldn’t say no. Had she turned me down, not only would that have stung bad, but it would have probably ruined one of my favourite places in the world. Luckily, we’re still together 15 years later.

Moving Abroad

Leaving all the comforts you have always known can be a daunting task. On two different occasions, I packed up my belongings and ventured to other parts of the world for new adventures. I spent a semester in Preston, England as part of an exchange program, before later moving to Toronto, Canada for a year-long school course. Both journeys made me much more confident.

Traveller’s Choice

Along with Mrs. Sip, I have journeyed to 51 different countries across the globe, including some that aren’t as safe and settled as others. With each expedition, insight has been gained about how other parts of the world operate. There are many more places on my wish list, though, so this courageous enterprise will never be fully achieved.

Dangerous Travel

Daredevil Days

The Sip Advisor can have a bit of a reckless spirit, doing crazy things like leaping off of high platforms (sometimes tethered to a bungee cord) into watery depths below. Some highlights have included jumping off the Auckland Bridge in New Zealand, swimming in the Devil’s Pool on the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe, and ziplining in multiple locales.

Conquering Anxiety

While it always remains in the background of my psyche, I can proudly say that I’ve conquered anxiety issues on three separate occasions in my life. For me, anxiety has largely been a fear of fear. It has been brought on by different circumstances and while each occurrence is tough, I have always worked through and made it out the other end stronger.

Daddy Daycare

Through my life, I haven’t really been around babies, meaning I’d never changed a diaper, fed a little one, and rarely even held a baby. So, taking the leap into fatherhood recently has certainly been an eye opener. It’s also been an awesome experience, despite the sleep deprivation, second guessing and unsolicited advice from all angles. I wouldn’t change a thing!

Mixer Mania #38: Hemingway Daquiri

Hemingway Daquiri.JPG

  • 2 oz White Rum
  • 0.25 oz Maraschino Liqueur
  • Top with Grapefruit Juice
  • Splash of Lime Juice
  • Dash of Simple Syrup
  • Garnish with a Lime Wedge and Maraschino Cherry

Perhaps one day I’ll be viewed in a similar vein to Sir Ranulph Fiennes, recognized as the bravest man in the world. If not, I’m still happy with my own accomplishments!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
This drink is very good and has brought me around to the Grapefruit Juice bandwagon. I’m particularly impressed with the Maraschino Liqueur. Ernest Hemingway was onto something!

September 12 – Life Flight

Frenzied Flights

As Mrs. Sip and I prepare for a 36-hour flight itinerary from Vancouver, Canada to Livingstone, Zambia, I am reminded of the many plane rides from hell that have entertained us over the years. Hopefully the two of us won’t have to deal with any convicts, terrorists, or venomous snakes, among other obstacles, and the journey is nothing but smooth sailings. These folks weren’t so lucky!

#5: Airplane!

Food on flights is pretty awful a majority of the time and mass food poisoning is only one of the many mishaps the passengers of Flight #209 had to deal with. Even their pilot was stricken by the illness. Personally, I’m still hesitant to touch airline meals after getting sick following our flight from Morocco to London last year and it’s not like I ever craved the barely-passable-as-food substances anyway.

airplane-boop

#4: Snakes on a Plane

While I’m fascinated by snakes, I’m also terrified of the creatures. If I was aboard a flight where dozens of the poisonous reptiles were unleashed (and stimulated to attack), the Sip Advisor would be hysterical and yes, there would be just as much cursing coming from my mouth as Samuel L. Jackson’s. You know, just minus the heroic courage and quotable punchlines!

#3: Con Air

As if snakes weren’t bad enough, imagine a plane full of violent criminals. That’s certainly not pleasant, but on the upside, you’re the one wrongly-convicted dude amongst them and you’ve served your time and just want to get home to your woman and baby girl. Of course, things don’t go according to plan and not even the worst southern accent in the history of film will help you!

first-class-passengers

#2: Air Force One

The concept of terrorists aboard an airliner became all too real, thanks to the 9/11 attacks. Back in 1997, though, it was largely Hollywood action fodder. So, Indiana Jones… er, I mean President James Marshall (played by Harrison Ford), finds himself aboard the Commander-in-Chief’s private plane, except he’s not alone. He’s joined by members of a Russian terrorist group and they’re looking for a bargaining chip.

#1: Twilight Zone

One of the worst aspects of air travel is your fellow passengers. They can be rude, smelly, anxious, obnoxious, and inconsiderate. I’ve even been on a few flights where passengers have nearly come to blows. What would be even worse, would be a passenger complaining about a monster being on the wing of your plane… especially if you’re trying to grab a little shuteye. The crazy part is the guy was actually right – dun dun dun!

Super Saturday Shot Day: Life Flight

It should also be noted that Launchpad McQuack of DuckTales and Darkwing Duck fame has one of the worst pilot records in history. Sure, once he’s up in the air, he’s a deft pilot. Problem is, he’s never met a landing that he liked, making for a white-knuckle ride every time!

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.

February 8 – Cryonic Shock

Science Fact

There are some crazy ideas out there in sci-fi land. Some are so far-fetched that only the imagination could ever dream them up. Regardless of their practical application, here are the top five items I wish actually existed:

#5: Teleporters

How great would it be to instantly zap yourself from work to home, avoiding a tiresome and frustrating commute? How about being able to travel around the world in a flash… and not have to be a mutant to do so? Hell, even Urkel had one of these bad boys! I think the best use of a teleporter would be to pop in and out of people’s room, Monsters Inc.-style and scare the bejesus out of unsuspecting folk. Paranormal Sip Activity, yo!

teleport machine

#4: Cryonics

Let me set this up for you with a scenario we’ve all had loom before us in our future. Your significant other wants you to attend some show you have absolutely no interest in. And hey, this door swings both ways. While I’ve been dragged to plays and musicals before, I’ve also done the dragging, taking Mrs. Sip to the odd wrestling show or football game. The solution? Freeze yourself right through to the day following the event you need to avoid and voila, you’re safe and sound!

#3: Space Vehicles

Ranging from hovercrafts to light speed travel pods, I can’t wait for the days when traffic not only doesn’t limit me, but can no longer get me killed. I’d like to think of myself as a good driver, but there are so many bad ones out there. How nice would it be to leave out all the guesswork and even the playing field. Or, better yet, be able to take to the skies and zoom past the horrible motorists… although air transportation would surely provide its own slate of concerns.

Jetsons-science

#2: Death Rays

I wouldn’t say that I’m a violent person, but put one of these babies in my hands and goodbye homeless population! What’s that? You want my hard earned money so you can waste it on booze… wait, I’m all for that noble cause and that is where the cash is going anyway… where was I, oh right, ZAP! Goodbye panhandler, my money is mine to waste on jelly beans and race horses.

#1: Robots

Providing they don’t rise up and try to take over the world, having robots at our beck and call to do every single daunting task we don’t want to do would be amazing. We’re getting there, what with our Roomba vacuums and assembly lines. Best of all, you could have your pick of famous robots from Rosie of The Jetson’s fame to Bender Rodriguez from Futurama. I’d probably settle on Short Circuit’s Johnny-5 thanks to his mix of heart, intelligence, humour, and love of Steve Guttenberg.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Cryonic Shock

Cryonic Shock Shooter

  • Rim glass with Sugar
  • 0.5 oz Blue Curacao
  • 0.5 oz Ouzo
  • 0.25 Brandy
  • 0.25 White Rum
  • Splash Sweet & Sour Mix

Which science fiction creations would you love to see in the real world? How would you best use them to your advantage? What do you hope never sees the light of day? I eagerly await your thought-provoking responses!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
I adapted the cocktail version of this recipe to turn it into a shooter. Despite the wide array of ingredients, I liked this shot. You never know how the licorice-flavoured spirits will behave when combined with other ingredients, but in this case, I feel the Ouzo enhanced the shot, rather than making it suffer as a result of its inclusion. The Sugar Rim, which I created with candy powder was also a nice sour bonus to go along with the sweet liquid.

January 1 – Perfect Kiss

Mission Accomplished!!!

Well, my little sippers, we did it! *Confetti and streamers fall from the sky while fireworks erupt, setting off the ever-hated car alarms and the somewhat necessary sprinkler systems!*

missionaccomplished

365 days of boozing made 2013 a very memorable year… well, at least the parts of it I remember!

As I hop up onto my soapbox, I’d like to thank Mrs. Sip for first coming up with the idea for the project and supporting me throughout (at least until you were made more of a figurehead board member).

To anyone that provided liquor or anything else for any of the drinks made, especially Ma and Pa Sip, who often brought me items from their collection, to help with my recipes, I am humbly in your debt.

To all my fellow media moguls out there who helped along the way by liking a post, making my tweet a favourite, directing people to my site, and anything else, I couldn’t have reached the heights I did without your assistance.

For everyone out there in Sip Nation who took the time to read my wonderful prose, give yourself a well-deserved pat on the back. It takes a village to raise something, anything, and together we got this wicked site off the ground and launched it into orbit.

if-it-makes-a-difference

Getting things done regardless of the consequences!

So, I guess you’re wondering what’s next for The Sip Advisor. Well, here’s the long-awaited plan for 2014:

We’ll be switching gears from the 365-day project to a world showcase of sorts, as I virtually travel the planet and experience the feature libations of over 50 countries. Each week, the Sip Advisor will be in a new country with posts highlighting some of the features of each stop, as I drunkenly bounce around the globe.

Articles will be published every Monday and Thursday, starting January 6th with my home nation of Canada getting the proverbial ball rolling. From there, you never really know where I’ll end up… it’ll be like tracking down the infamous (and super sexy) Carmen Sandiego!

We’ll still rock the Super Saturday Shot Day entries, so join us every weekend for another shooter to get the party started. Finally, in my spare time, I’ll also be taking on various special projects for this spectacular site (including Product Reviews, Man vs. Liquor Challenges, and a yet-to-be-named Competition Page [please vote for your favourite: Spirit Skirmish/Scuffle, Recipe Row, Drink Dispute, Beverage/Bevvy Brawl, Booze Battles]. Stay tuned for all the developments.

And what Sip Advisor post would be complete without a drink recipe. Here’s one last little gift of thanks from me to you on this most glorious of days. Enjoy!

Drink #366: Perfect Kiss

Perfect Kiss Drink Recipe

  • 1 oz White Rum (I used Grand Melon)
  • 1 oz Peach Schnapps
  • Top with Lemon-Lime Soda
  • Garnish with Berries

Much love and much thanks to you all you little sippers! I wish you nothing but the best in 2014!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
This is a great cocktail for celebrating that first kiss of 2014 with the nearest/dearest loved one! The drink was really nice and refreshing with tastes of berry, melon, citrus, and peach. It provided my first chance to use the spherical ice cubes Mrs. Sip got me molds for as a Christmas gift. Look out for my first product review post based on these little gems!

December 1 – Winter Mojito

Christmas Cheer

While most of the world is only capable of rocking around the Christmas tree for 12 days of holiday cheer, the Sip Advisor will be bringing you more than double that with 25 days of wonderful recipes. Today, we start things off with some facts about Christmas. I hope you’re all snuggly by a roaring fire!

Halloween By the Numbers

Drink #335: Winter Mojito

Winter Mojito Drink Recipe

  • Muddle Mint Leaves and Cranberries
  • 1.5 oz White Rum (I used Bacardi)
  • Splash of Cranberry Juice
  • Top with Lemon-Lime Soda
  • Garnish with Drunken Cranberries

This is among my favourite times of the year and I’m giddy with all the drinks and fun that is sure to come in the lead up to Christmas Day!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4.5 Sips out of 5):
I put together two different recipes for this cocktail. The one listed above and also a more basic mojito, with the simple addition of Cranberries floated on top for garnish. The version I went with for the article I feel is better because of its colour and that it’s truly a variant of the usual mojito concoction. It’s a wonderfully tasty drink and a great way to bring in the season!

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.

June 24 – Cold Lips

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

We continue our vacation exploits with stops in Estonia, Russia, Finland, and Sweden, along with more hijinks aboard the Emerald Princess!

Drinking on the Ship

One of my favoruite parts of a cruise vacation is, of course, the drinking. There are a number of bars around the ship and it’s fun to hit each one for at least one bevvy. Highlights of this voyage included cheaper cocktails in the Skywalker Lounge (with it’s beautiful views out the back of the ship), thanks to our new platinum status as cruise members and a visit to Vines Wine Bar, where tapas and sashimi sushi accompanied glasses of rose and pinot grigio wines.

cruise ship

I was drinking, but I wasn’t driving… I swear!

Liquor Finds & Dannebrog Café

Tallinn, Estonia was an amazing little stop that I hadn’t anticipated enjoying so much. And it came with a number of liquor moments. After touring the old, historic city, we popped into a souvenir store and found the aforementioned Cloudberry Liqueur. Imagine my surprise and excitement when Mrs. Sip pointed it out behind one of the cashiers. We also discovered the town’s most popular spirit Vana Tallinn and later found bottles of liqueur that included sugar crystals at the bottom to keep the libations sweet and delicious. Mrs. Sip selected a peach variety of this technique to bring home.

Our last stop of the port visit was to a little bar situated into the old town wall of the medieval city, called Dannebrog Café. You have to climb up narrow and steep stone stairs to enjoy your food and drink high up on a little wooden platform built from the wall (I think Mrs. Sip needed a drink or two just to get the courage to make the climb back down!). From our high perch, we were offered and amazing view of the city, while enjoying some local beers and wines, before making our way back to the ship and onward.

Vodka Tasting

On our honeymoon cruise, Mrs. Sip and I took part in a rum tasting aboard our ship, as we went through the Panama Canal route. This time, traversing through Northern Europe’s Vodka Belt, we of course had to sample some of the spirit and we were happily provided with a sampling of vodkas. We tried Russian Standard, Absolut and Matrioshka Lux, as we geared up for our two days in Russia. In Russia, we were advised by our guide to pick up a bottle of Beluga Vodka, said to be one of the finest sold in the country. That is precisely what we did and hopefully the old adage is true: Russians really know their vodka!

russian vodka

Beers in Finland

With only a short time in Finland, we had to rush around to get our sightseeing done, including taking a boat out to the famous world heritage site, the Suomenlinna sea fortress. When that was complete, it was time for a little rest and relaxation in a Helsinki pub, trying a couple local beers. Before we returned to the ship, we hit a convenience store and bought seven tall boys, each a different brand, to later have our own beer tasting to experience a greater selection of what the country had to offer on the brew front. My personal favourite was the Karhu selections.

Captain’s Circle

A highlight of our last two extended cruises has been invites to the Captain’s Circle celebration (for returning cruisers only). These are mini drinkfests, where servers bring you one cocktail after another for about half an hour, even if you’re already working on three drinks at once at your table. On our Panama honeymoon cruise, it’s where I discovered an appreciation for Cosmos and this time, I was able to enjoy a couple Gimlets, among other treats.

Finishing Cruise Alcohol

At the end of every cruise comes a brief moment of panic when you realize that you still have a fair bit of alcohol left to consume and so few hours to accomplish the feat. Never fear, however, as our troupe went through a quarter bottle of vodka, a dozen beers, some champagne and even hit a couple of the bars around the ship for afternoon cocktails! Damn, I love days at sea!!!

Drink #175: Cold Lips

Cold Lips Cocktail

  • Rim glass with Powder Candy
  • 1 oz Vana Tallinn
  • 1 oz White Rum
  • Top with Cranberry Juice
  • Garnish with Strawberry

So, as you can see, our little vacation was anything but, what with all the port stops and other activities. Still, any time away from work is good time!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
Like yesterday’s inaugural experiment with Crowberry Frost Liqueur, today’s drink provided us with our first opportunity to make a cocktail with Vana Tallinn, which tastes very nice in this mix. I used a Powder Candy Rim to visually show the ‘cold lips’ effect. The Cranberry Juice actually works well with the liquors and all ingredients come together nicely.

June 5 – Asian Mist

Spit Roast

I’m not sure if this is where the drink gets its name, but it’s a common gimmick in wrestling for a Japanese grappler – Great Kabuki, Great Muta, Killer Khan, Yoshihiro Tajiri, Kwang, and the list of foreign baddies goes on and on – to spit “Asian Mist” in their opponent’s eyes. The act is so common that the different-coloured mists even have diverse “effects”. Green blinds temporarily, red burns, black blinds for prolonged periods, blue puts rival’s to sleep, yellow paralyzes, and purple causes memory loss… only in the crazy world of wrestling! Here are some other well-known spitters:

Acid Reflux

In the Mortal Kombat game franchise, the character of Reptile can spit poisonous venom at his opponent – “forward, forward, A”– was the move combo, I believe. Reptile was one of my favourite characters to use in the game because of his bad ass ways. Over the years, his fatalities (a hallmark of the MK series) have included biting off the head of an opponent and regurgitating deadly acid upon a prone foe.

Bloody Hell

In a somewhat similar vein to the Asian Mist, gothic wrestler Gangrel was known to drink “blood” from a goblet and then spit it into the air, or into the face of a foe, blinding them in the process. Those crazy vampires… what will they think of next? If only us humans could harness a way to spit daylight in their faces and eradicate your Edwards and Bellas from the world.

Dilophosaurus Venomous

In Jurassic Park, these little bastards are known to spit blinding venom at their human creators and captors… you think the little monsters would have some sense of gratitude! On the theme park attraction based off the movie franchise, the first sign of danger occurs when some Dilophosaurs pop up and promptly spit at the passing vehicles and passengers. They’ve caught me a time or two and I have to say that I must be immune to their toxins because I reacted to it similarly to everyday tap water.

Dis-Service Industry

There has always been a fear amongst restaurant complainers that their food will be returned to them with a loogie special sauce added to their meal, courtesy of a disgruntled cook or cashier. I’m not a natural complainer (don’t you hate those people!), but this fear provides an additional reason not to do so in fast food joints or any other eatery. I like my burger sans spit, thank you very much.

food spit

Sports Salivation

There have been a number of spitting incidents in the realm of professional sports, each more disgusting than the last. It doesn’t seem to matter which sport is being played, as even golfer Tiger Woods had to deal with an incident after spitting on a green during a tournament in Dubai. Possibly the most famous spit scandal belongs to Roberto Alomar, who loogied on an umpire. He still managed to gain entry into the Baseball Hall of Fame, despite the controversy.

I’m Hit: The Keith Hernandez Story

This may be one of my favourite Seinfeld moments, as Kramer and Newman tell the story of baseball star Keith Hernandez spitting on them following a game. The entire scene mimics the movie JFK, and the recounting of the story is filmed in a similar fashion to the Zapruder videos of John F. Kennedy’s assassination. Jerry takes the role of conspiracy theorist and proves that there had to be a second spitter to explain the outlandish tale.

Spit-Take

Comedian and actor Danny Thomas is often credited with inventing the spit-take. I wonder if he would have come up with the gag if he knew that many years later, wrestlers would be blinding their opponents and causing memory loss using the same tactic he used to get laughs!?

Drink #156: Asian Mist

Asian Mist Martini

  • 1.5 oz Malibu Rum
  • 0.75 oz Melon Liqueur
  • 0.25 oz White Rum
  • Top with half Lemon-Lime Soda and half Pineapple Juice
  • Garnish with a Lemon Wedge

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4 Sips out of 5):
This drink was a little on the sweet side, but it’s relatively strong and, like always, that’s a good thing. The coconut and lemon flavours work well together, but sometimes I just can’t get my head around pineapple juice. I mean, I love Hawaiian-style pizza, but drinking the stuff has been known to throw me off.