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Million Dollar Cocktail

There’s lots to love about Rosé Cider.  Read about my favorites ciders with tasting notes in the Roanoker Magazine behind the page:

https://theroanoker.com/blogging/behind-the-page/the-romance-of-rose-cidre/

Million Dollar Cocktail

I love any recipe that is named “Million Dollar”. This Million Dollar Cocktail recipe is worth its weight in gold!  Absolutely divine!

Place Nick and Nora style cocktail glass in the freezer to chill while you prepare the cocktail.

For each cocktail:

2 fl ounces Gin (Sunset Hills Gin, made in Virginia, is my favorite gin of the moment.  Light and delightful, it does not have a strong juniper taste.)

1/2 fl ounce freshly pressed pineapple juice (I blended fresh pineapple in my blender to make “juice” which was more like a thin puree.)

1/4 fl ounce Grenadine syrup

1/2 fl ounce pasteurized egg whites (find these in the refrigerated egg section of the grocery store)

A few drops of Blood Orange Bitters

Pineapple chunk garnish

Shake the gin, pineapple juice, Grenadine syrup and egg whites with ice in a cocktail shaker. Strain into the chilled cocktail glass. Place a few drops of blood orange bitters on the top of the cocktail.  Garnish with a pineapple chunk.

bright bubble color flatlay

Photo by Pineapple Supply Co. on Pexels.com

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TGCC of 2018

This sounds like a fabulous champagne tasting!

Claudinha's Personal Musing und so

TGCC.13-1330220

Over the last couple of months, we conducted

The Great Champagne Challenge of 2018

in our dining room. It wasn’t easy, it wasn’t casual, hell, no, it was damn serious, it was a true challenge. Just look at all those bottles!

We don’t actually drink champagne often. Mostly on St. Sylvestre, as New Year’s Eve is called around here, maybe to celebrate a birthday or to welcome houseguests. Let’s say we’re special occasion champagne sippers.  It all began with an idea earlier this summer. Keeping the keyword “special” in mind, we asked ourselves, shouldn’t we have our own special house champagne? A champagne we both enjoy equally and which would become “our” signature champagne at C2L, our home in Cognac* called Chez Deux Leons.

[* We already have two House Cognacs, but that’s a different story 😉]

One of those two lions in our house promptly began exhaustive online research…

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Spain, Part Two: Parés Baltà and our Hunt for Anything Locked

❤️ Parés Baltà! Especially their Cava.

the.wine.girl

Pass the ham!After our visit to Albet i Noya, we hopped back in the car with our new friend Marc of Barcelona by Road and headed towards our next stop in the Penèdes wine region, Parés Baltà. (In case you didn’t catch my previous article Spain, Part One.., you should know that  Barcelona by Road organised and planned our entire tour through Penèdes and Priorat).

Dream Team

Arriving at the winery we were warmly greeted by Gemma Muray (Hospitality Manager), whose combination of charisma, passion and laid back attitude was so captivating that I actually found myself speechlessly gawking at her as if I was floating outside of myself and the entire situation in a state of stunned, and no doubt awkward, observation. She passed us each a straw hat and pointed us towards a rugged, well-used looking 4×4 across the parking lot. We all piled in and as we rumbled…

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Cava: The Forgotten Middle Child of the Sparkling Wine World

❤️ Cava! Here’s some lovely Cava recommendations from the Motley Cru.
Just in time for the weekend. Cheers! 🥂

the motley cru

Sitting quietly and studiously in the corner is its elder brother Champagne – mature, bookish, often aloof – while the younger sister Prosecco – loud, brash, in-your-face – runs amok, seemingly everywhere at once. In the public’s eyes it is these two categories that command most attention, with the unfortunate result that Cava, the historic Spanish sparkler is often overlooked, or, worse, ignored.

I like to imagine that Cava would often skulk away to hang out with his other offbeat friends – Crémant, Franciacorta, and MCC (not to forget his far-flung cousins in places like Chile and Australia) – to listen to some indie rock and moan about not how they’re never understood.

Which is all a shame really. Cava has far more flavour and fizz than Prosecco, and can be much better value than Champagne, with top examples of the former often surpassing cheaper versions of the…

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Time To Tailgate With Bloody Marys ~ Yellow and Red!

It’s Time To Tailgate!

…and that means it’s time for Bloody Marys! 

River and Rail bloody mary

A Virginia Favorite! 

Texas Beach Bloody Mary Mix

Available locally at Mr. Bill’s Wine Cellar

$7.99 a bottle

For Real Bloody Mary Drinkers!

I love this Bloody Mary mix, tastes like a fresh tomato with just the right amount of spice.

https://www.texasbeachbloodymary.com/

Texas Bloody Mary Mix was created by three friends from Richmond, Virginia. While Working in the industry as bartenders, they realized there was an immediate need for a mix with all the good stuff already in the bottle. So we set out on the long journey to create the tasty, authentic and responsibly produced Texas Beach Bloody Mary Mix.

The name Texas Beach comes from our favorite part of the James River located in lovely Richmond, Virginia at the end of Texas Avenue. Cheers!

bloody mary

Yellow Tomato Bloody Mary

Yellow Tomato Bloody Mary

I found this recipe for Yellow Tomato Bloody Mary in Bon Appétit Magazine. Fresh and delicious.  It’s always fun to garnish Bloody Mary cocktails ~ I chose celery stalks, golden cherry tomatoes, pimiento stuffed olives, crispy bacon and pickled green and purple beans.

Recipe from the August, 2018 issue of Bon Appétit. Recipe by Molly Baz.

Bruised tomatoes dripping with juice are tailor-made for a fresh Bloody Mary. They might not be on display at the farmers’ market—beauty queens, they’re not—but they’re often there if you ask.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 lb. very ripe yellow tomatoes, cored, coarsely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, coarsely chopped, plus celery heart stalks with leaves for serving
  • 6 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup Castelvetrano olive brine, plus olives for serving
  • ¼ cup finely grated peeled horseradish
  • 3 Tbsp. hot sauce (preferably Cholula)
  • 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 4 tsp. kosher salt, divided, plus more
  • 1 lemon wedge
  • 6 oz. gin
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp. mild red pepper flakes
  • Sun Gold tomatoes (for serving)

RECIPE PREPARATION

  • Blend yellow tomatoes and chopped celery in a blender until smooth, about 1 minute. Strain through a medium-mesh sieve into a large pitcher, pressing on solids to extract as much juice as possible. Whisk in lemon juice, olive brine, horseradish, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, sugar, and 3 tsp. salt. Taste and season with more salt if needed. Cover and chill at least 1 hour and up to 3 days.

  • Combine black pepper, red pepper flakes, and remaining 1 tsp. salt in a shallow bowl.

  • To make each cocktail, rub the rim of a 12-oz. glass with a lemon wedge, then dip into spicy salt. Fill glass with ice and pour in 1½ oz. gin. Top with 5 oz. Bloody Mary mix; garnish with cherry tomatoes, celery heart stalks, and olives.

    If you are not a gin fan, try making this cocktail with Plymouth Gin. Plymouth does not have a strong juniper flavor. It is smooth with just the right amount of floral notes.

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CHAMPAGNE GLASSWARE: DOES IT MATTER?

Lovely thoughts on champagne flutes, tulips and coupes from the
Champagne Chick. Cheers!

THE CHAMPAGNE CHICK

(Image: wsetglobal.com)

I’m probably going to have a few connoisseurs rolling their eyes at me, but I’m going to go out on a limb here and say if it’s a non-vintage Champagne, then not really all that much … as long as it’s good quality glass as the quality of the glass will definitely affect the taste of the Champagne.

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50th Birthday Wine #1 – Veuve Clicquot

Let life surprise you! Happy Birthday Side Hustle Wino!

Side Hustle Wino

My milestone birthday started with coffee and a box of Godiva chocolates that were a gift from my Dad.  Shortly thereafter, my husband toted my “birthday wines” down to the beach where we planned to spend the day. The first wine was of course a Champagne! This bottle was also a birthday gift from my dear friend and co-worker Marcus.  I don’t know how I am supposed to be upset about turning 50 when it starts out like this!

img_6287Popping the cork early with only a couple of chocolates for breakfast had me soon realizing why people celebrate life’s happy moments with Champagne! It just puts a smile on your face.

I had not had Veuve Clicquot before and, to be completely honest, it has such massive media exposure with product placement it seems literally everywhere, it always left me thinking their branding/marketing person was phenomenal but it never made me…

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