If you are like me, the many restrictions brought on by the pandemic have not dampened your desire to have nice things, or the quest to keep comfort and joy in your life as much as possible. In practice, this means that if I can’t go to a bar for cocktails, I bring the bar to me in the form of keeping my favorite spirits and mixers stocked and ready to pour. Pandemic Drinking: You Are Doing it Right.
As a woman who has a bottle of vodka in the freezer at all times, I like to keep up on vodka trends. Today I am going to tell you about NEFT, a small-batch vodka with a taste as memorable as its container. As you can see by the photo above, NEFT comes in a portable, unbreakable and — best of all — resealable barrel that keeps contents cold for up to six hours. For those who live with a no-glass-by-the-pool rule, the packaging alone is a game changer.
Do you like Ketchup? I sure do. Ketchup is one of my top-three favorite condiments of all time — up there with Mayonnaise, and Trader Joe’s Green Tomatillo Chili Salsa, which is just insane — and if we are talking about Specialty Ketchups, don’t even get me started. If you can’t get your head around the thought of digging into a plate of crispy French fries without a generous side of ketchup for dipping, then let me introduce you to your new favorite thing: Vodka & Italian Tomato Ketchup from Spirit & Co.
Spirit & Co. is the first company worldwide to exclusively use premium liquor in each of its products. If you are a fan of Penne with Vodka Sauce, you already know that tomato and vodka is a distinctive pairing that delivers an umami flavor comparable to, say, adding truffle oil to almost anything. The flavor is unique and instantly recognizable, and even if you can’t pinpoint how the vodka makes the tomato sauce taste better, you understand that the result is crazy delicious. That said, I am willing to defend myself against accusations of being overly hyperbolic when I say that Spirit & Co.’s Vodka & Italian Tomato Ketchup will ruin you for all other ketchups: because it is absolutely the best ketchup I have eaten in my life.
Drums For Peace Knotted Gun By Ringo Starr ($1390) For The Non-Violence Art Project
Life is better with Art in it: it’s just a fact. Whether you are a seasoned collector, someone looking to start a collection by investing in a single piece for your home, or an art lover who just enjoys the inspiration and joy of browsing, the Affordable Art Fair is a great place to expose yourself to (and purchase) art of almost every tangible medium. Held in a dual-floor space inside the Metropolitan Pavilion, AAFNYC gathers contemporary galleries from across the globe in the spring and fall each year for a three-day event that’s always both educational and lots of fun. This season’s fair boasted the most diverse collection of high-quality, original art that I’ve noticed for as long as I’ve been attending. Let me turn you on to some of my favorite pieces spotted at this year’s fall fair!
Cheers to the Chopin Vodka Booth (All Photos By Gail)
For Foodies and Food Writers alike, the change of seasons brings on excitement for holiday foods and ideas for entertaining! It also means that it’s time for Fall Food Fete, a great event to sample new products and get in the mood to celebrate. Here are few of our favorite products from the show, which took place on October 27th!
A limited-edition line of Heisenberg Blue Ice Vodka, inspired by the hit television series Breaking Bad, is currently available for sale in California, and online at Reserve Bar, with nationwide sales coming soon. Three special edition bottles of Heisenberg by Blue Ice feature distinct graphics and infamous quotes such as “Say My Name,” “The One Who Knocks,” and “Tread Lightly.”
Continuing in the spirit of brilliant homage, Observer just published a side-splitting list of The 10 Most Appropriate Times to Drink Blue Ice’s ‘Breaking Bad’ Vodka, which you can read for yourself at This Link. My Favorite:
Oh, are two killer twins after you? With axes? Because that is a horrifyingly specific weapon to use in this day and age. Do they have you cornered in a parking lot? After a peaceful day of shopping, no less? How awful. Oh there you go, you killed one with your car. Is the other twin bearing down on you, slowly, axe raised as you fumble for your gun? How very stressful. You deserve a nice chilled vodka, my friend. Then I suggest you break the bottle over the bumper of your Jeep Commando and prepare to fight.
A couple of weeks ago, my friend Mark threw a fabulous brunch party, where I was introduced to a delicious alcoholic beverage called Maven. An entirely original cocktail, Maven is created by the infusion of fine wines with premium vodka — two beverages which I love on their own, but would never, ever have thought of combining. Can I just tell you that the result is a great-tasting cocktail that kind of blew my mind a little.
At the brunch, I also met Maven’s creator, Stephenie Harris; a terrifically charming lady who really knows how to talk about her product. The thing is though, once you taste Maven, it really sells itself. Committed to making a top-shelf product, Maven uses the best all-natural ingredients, resulting is a truly high quality, ready to drink cocktail. By combining gluten-free vodka, which is distilled 6 times, with super premium Chardonnay from the Edna Valley, or Pinot Noir from Sonoma, Maven has perfected the proprietary blend that is used to create their cocktails. And the proof is in the tasting. You would probably not think that Wine and Vodka would blend into such a smooth, delicious tasting cocktail, but once you try Maven you will be won over.
One of the things I love about Maven Cocktails is its single-serve, frosted glass bottle with a reseable cap — gorgeous, and also smart design! Not only does glass help to maintain the integrity of the natural flavors, but the cap is super convenient. Say you are in a club and want to hit the dance floor between sips; you can just reseal your drink and drop it in your bag or purse without fear of spillage. The cap is also a good security measure that reassures you no one has slipped anything into your drink. No one likes to think about that, but it happens!
Also, not that I ever think about this, because I don’t, but for the calorie conscious: a full (6.8 ounce) bottle of Maven is just 171 calories (6.3 carbs), while the average mixed drink, such as a Cosmo or Mojito, is over 200 calories and over 10 carbs. Mostly, Maven is just a great tasting cocktail that I will be drinking again, and encouraging others to try, in the future. For more information about Maven Cocktails and to find out where to purchase Maven in your area, visit Maven Cocktails Dot Com.
All Photos By Gail (Click on Any Image to Enlarge for Detail)
Four times each year we get very excited in anticipation of our favorite food trade show, Food Fete, because it is so awesome. Winter Food Fete took place last week on February 25th and while it was on the small side, we discovered plenty of cool new products to tell you about.