Category Archives: Upcoming Events

Happy St. Andrew’s Day

St. Patrick gets all the press, but Scotland has its own patron saint: Saint Andrew (who else?), and he has his own day of celebration, too: November 30.

Pick up a glass of your finest single malt and raise it toward our neighbors across the pond. Even if you aren’t Scottish, good old Andrew is also the patron saint of Russia, Sicily, Greece, Romania, and Malta. He also protects all army rangers, mariners, fisherman (and fishmongers), singers, performers, and — last but not least — rope-makers.

Drinkhacker’s 2008 Holiday Gift Guide – Best Alcohol/Spirits for Christmas

What better gift is there than a bottle of booze? Not only will your giftee think you’re incredibly sophisticated, chances are he’ll let you drink a good amount of it before he realizes his terrible mistake. What’s the best booze to put under the tree this Christmas season? Of course you want to offer something a little unusual — something that your buddy couldn’t pick up himself on a routine trip to the grocery store, at least — but above all it has to be good. Here are my picks for the absolute best booze to give for 2008, split up by type (and with at least a few good, affordable options for the budget-conscious).

Bourbon – Eagle Rare 17 Year Old (2008 Edition) – $65 – An awesomely sweet bourbon that’s just the right age. Jump on this near-perfect spirit for yourself, too. For a bit more check out Four Roses Mariage Collection, though it can be tough to find. At just $40, Basil Hayden’s is always a worthy present that won’t break the bank and is on just about every liquor store shelf.

highland park 18 year 200x300 Drinkhackers 2008 Holiday Gift Guide   Best Alcohol/Spirits for ChristmasScotch – Highland Park 18 Year Old - $100 – Yeah, it’s expensive, but the quality is second to none — and other top picks released this year, like Glenlivet XXV, run twice as much money or more. HP18 is generally accessible in the market, and it’s sure to liven up any holiday gathering.

AbsintheObsello - $54 - The best absinthe on the market today is also one of the cheapest. This Spanish number is suitable for absinthe newcomers and veterans alike; it goes down easy while still offering complex, intricate herbal flavors. The new Pernod is also worth a look.

Gin – Whitley Neill - $30 – Some good gin to be found in 2008, but I like the African genesis story behind this unusual gin from Whitley Neill the best. Bluecoat‘s also good. Both are pretty widely available and will make any G&T fan perk up.

Vodka – Xellent - $40 – If you must give someone vodka this year (and really, I beg you to think a little more creatively), try this strikingly-bottled vodka from Switzerland.

rhum clement cuvee homere 21 241x300 Drinkhackers 2008 Holiday Gift Guide   Best Alcohol/Spirits for ChristmasRum – Rhum Clement Cuvee Homere - $85 - So many good rums out this year, but the Cuvee Homere Clement is too good not to recommend, and the bottle design alone makes it absolutely perfect for gift-giving. Hard to go wrong in this category though, with Zacapa, Oronoco, and Atlantico all good alternatives. Click the “rum” button at right for even more ideas.

TequilaJose Cuervo Reserva de la Familia Anejo 2008 - $100 – If you can find and afford it. Alternately try anything from the Cielo line, which is uniformly good from blanco to anejo.

Brandy – Delamain Extra de Grande Champagne - $399 – Didn’t try many brandies this year, but this number from Delamain was easily the best of them, among the top spirits I’ve ever had. Delamain also has a gift box of three of its cognacs in mini-bottles that would be a great gift.

Liqueur – Domaine de Canton Ginger Liqueur - $32 – Many iffy liqueurs came out this year, but Canton is an exception, by far the most intriguing of the category. You can add a few drops to just about any cocktail recipe and discover something new, and giftees will absolutely adore the packaging even if they never open it. St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur is another winning concoction that everyone totally loves.

Need another custom gift idea? Drop me a line or leave a comment here and I’ll offer my best advice!

Photos from La Soiree 2008

This weekend we dropped by the French American Chamber of Commerce’s La Soiree event. Quite a hopping event — a soiree, even — packed with people and with some interesting wines on hand to try. (I even managed to hunt down an unusual and rare Audry cognac.) As for the food, well, this being a French event, I hope you like pate!

1800 Tequila Releases Essential Artists Series Bottlings

1800 tequila urban medium studio shot 225x300 1800 Tequila Releases Essential Artists Series BottlingsThe cool cats at 1800 are taking their tequila to new heights: By adding to the artistry of what’s in the bottle through a series of prints that adhere to the bottle itself.

For its first round, 1800 has commissioned nine artists to produce original works which are then recreated on the back of the trapezoidal 1800 bottle. The front of the bottle is clear and totally without labels or etching, so you see the artwork through the glass and the spirits.

urban medium 1800 Tequila Releases Essential Artists Series Bottlings1800 sent me the bottle designed by UrbanMedium (pictured, maybe), a mysterious Atlanta collective, and I really dig the pinup gal design — my only complaint is that you can’t make out the details as crisply on the bottle as you can on the original designs. The loss of the detail on her eyes and her amazing smile are downright tragic. (Compare my photo below with the original above.)

Bottles are extremely limited and are individually numbered. And if you don’t like the nine designs available, you can make your own. You can upload your design to the 1800tequila.com website, and the company will pick its favorite on or around December 14. The winner gets $10,000 and has their art used in an ad campaign where they live. The contest is planned to repeat on a yearly basis. So far, some of the user-submitted designs look really cool — check them out at the website below! Can’t wait to see who wins. (You can also order your own design printed on a real bottle for $225.)

As for the tequila, it’s the same 1800 on the inside. The essential artists series bottles run $35, not much more than the roughly $29 a standard bottle commands. Check ‘em out!

1800tequila.com

1800 tequila essential artists urban medium 1800 Tequila Releases Essential Artists Series Bottlings

Did I Say “Discriminating”?

Not only is there a World Series of Beer Pong, but it’s about to have its fourth annual showdown:

BPONG.COM is hosting the 4th annual World Series of Beer Pong in Las Vegas from January 1-5, 2009. The event is held at the renowned Flamingo casino and hotel right on the Vegas strip.  BPONG.COM has ongoing registration until December 5, 2008. Registration is $500 per person, which includes your hotel room for the duration of the tournament and registration for the WSOBP IV. This is the ideal winter break trip for college students.  Students are on winter break or intersession, entry and lodging is affordable, and the coolest thing is that the grand prize of the WSOBP is $50,000!

Prepare yourself at www.bpong.com.

If any of your readers make the journey, please send us some pics.

World’s Largest Irish Coffee To Be Mixed on November 10

The world’s largest Irish coffee is set to be a mere 15 gallons in size when San Francisco’s Buena Vista Cafe goes for a Guinness World Record on November 10, 2008. That’s big, to be sure, but that sounds like a record that’ll be pretty easy to break. Heck, with a big enough mug I could pull that one in my kitchen, I think.

Good luck, fellas.

Get down to the Buena Vista at 1pm on November 10 and you can have some of the concoction yourself!

What:
San Francisco’s Buena Vista Café celebrates the anniversary of Irish Coffee by creating world’s largest Irish Coffee cocktail. Towering more than three feet from the bar and holding more than 15 gallons, bartenders will be going after the Guinness World Record crafting a giant Irish Coffee that everyone in attendance will get to sample. Irish Coffee festival to also include music, Celtic entertainment and release of Tullamore Dew® Official Buena Vista Irish Whiskey.

When:
World’s Largest Irish Coffee Unveiling
November 10, 2008
Time: 1:00 PM

Buena Vista Café Irish Coffee Festival
November 8, 9, 10
Time: All Day
Location: 2765 Hyde Street
Fisherman’s Wharf, San Francisco

Who:
Frank Silletti – 2003 Irish Coffee Making World Champion

Why:
Celebrate the 56th anniversary of the Irish Coffee, originally introduced to San Francisco and America at the historic Buena Vista Café.

Upcoming: La Soiree Beaujolais 2008 – November 22, 2008

Looking to get a little culture this fall? Check out San Francisco’s La Soiree, hosted by the French American Chamber of Commerce and commencing on November 22, 2008, 5:30 to 9:30pm.

There’s fine food, French wine, a fashion show, and a silent auction — including a $5,500 Club Med vacation and a 15-day Rail Europe pass!

Definitely looks like a good time — some pictures of last year’s event are attached below. Get a babysitter and take the spouse out for a night on the town… Francais style!

Get all the details here. I’ll be there — be sure to say hi!

“The Art of Cocktailing” Hits San Francisco

SF’ers, here’s some organized drinking for you:

What: House of Campari and SWINDLE magazine present the “Art of Cocktailing”, a project designed to celebrate the union of art and mixology in cities across the country. Events at various art bars and lounges throughout the US will offer live silk screening demonstrations by local artists, featuring the original prints of acclaimed artist David Weidman, best known for his collection of original prints developed using line drawing and animation techniques on unconventional materials. In San Francisco, throughout the Fall, “Art of Cocktailing” events will offer guests the opportunity to recreate Weidman’s own art pieces as screen printed images on limited-edition canvas tote bags, while sipping Campari cocktails.

Presented by Campari and SWINDLE magazine, The “Art of Cocktailing” will run through Fall 2008 at venues in Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York City, Philadelphia and Chicago.

When/Where : Art of Cocktailing events in San Francisco:

Locations:

Matrix Fillmore
9/9
8:00 – 10:00 PM
3138 Fillmore Street

Supper Club
9/13
7:00 – 9:00 PM
657 Harrison St @ 3rd

111 Minna
9/17
6:30 – 8:30 PM
111 Minna Street

Admission: Must be 21 and over

Free

More info on the event available here. (Also click for details of the event in additional cities.)