Few things for you geeks. First, I’ve been in Seattle all week for a fun work event (Photo Week) which has kept me pretty busy the last few weeks.
I’m super excited because later this afternoon, one of my very favorite food photographers, Andrew Scrivani, will be doing two 90 minute sessions, one starting in about an hour (10:45am PDT) titled ‘Editorial Food Photography‘ and another called ‘DIY Light Table‘ that starts at 2:45pm PDT. Both sessions are free to watch when they air live, so be sure to check it out!
Then, starting tomorrow, the 5th Annual International Food Blogger Conference (IFBC) starts! So excited for my third IFBC. They’re always SO much fun and a great chance to talk food blogging with a bunch of awesome people. I’m sure I’ll have a lot more to share after the weekend!
It’s almost time for my favorite event of the year – the International Food Bloggers Conference! This year, it’s being held back up in Seattle again. This is my third (!) IFBC event – I went to Seattle 2010 and New Orleans 2011 (missed last year due to the big Geeks wedding).
It’ll also be really exciting for me personally to get to know any of the spirits bloggers who may be attending. If you’re blogging about wine, beer and/or cocktails and going to IFBC, please post a comment – would LOVE to meet up!
In preparation for the big event, we ordered fabulous new business cards from my very favorite British printers, Moo Cards! I think they turned out really great – here’s a teaser:
This weekend I’ve browsed the lists of the 8 Great Cocktail Blogs You Should Read Now by Michael Dietsch of a Dash of Bitters fame over on Serious Drinks and Cocktail Slut’s fabulous list of 14 Great Old Cocktail Blogs you Should Read Now.
Here’s the cocktail blogs I dig into whenever I have a few moments, these 10 bloggers inspire me to try to create more incredible cocktails, up my photography game and write more.
Now if only I could come up with an extra day a week to delve into all of this fantastic cocktail content more often…
Now, I’m totally biased (in that creativeLIVE is my new day job) but as a food blogger and all around food fan, I’m so excited about Andrew Scrivani’s upcoming 3-day Food Photography course this weekend. creativeLIVE offers high quality, in-depth video content that is FREE to watch when it’s live!).
Andrew is an all-star photographer, stylist, and NY Times columnist and will be reviewing some of his favorite photos, digging into recipe selection, how to prep food for a shot, and prop styling. Plus, one of my all time favorite food bloggers, Shauna Ahern, of Gluten Free Girl blog — will join Andrew on-stage!
I’m super excited about this one guys, hope to see you all there!
If you’ve been reading this blog, you already know I’m a huge fan of crowdsourcing and have funded several cocktail related Kickstarters over the last year. Today I found a project called “The Barman” by John Gallagher that is my favorite kind of geekery (it includes an App!).
From the Kickstarter:
Just place your glass on the Barman, pick the drink you want to make, select your drink size, and mix! The Barman will tell you what to pour, and when. It has an easy to read progress indicator that shows you how much of each component you have left to pour. In addition, your drink glass will turn from blue to red alerting you to stop pouring. In seconds, you will have your favorite cocktails mixed like a pro.
You had me at iPhone app that talks to a scale that tells me when my drink IS PERFECT. I helped to fund the project and hopefully sometime this fall, will be getting my very own Barman to experiment with. They claim it’ll help you make the perfect cocktail, we will see!
Tip 1 – Use Fresh Ingredients
No matter what you’re mixing up, start with the freshest ingredients you can get your hands on. This is especially true of citrus juice (lemon and lime in particular). Remember Vermouth is a wine, store it in the fridge and use it up within a month. Don’t forget to make or buy fresh ice too – nothing ruins a drink faster than ice that tastes like last month’s TV dinners.
Tip 2 – When to Shake or Stir
James Bond may have always wanted it shaken, but sometimes cocktails taste better stirred. Not sure when to stir and when to shake? Simple rule of thumb: if your cocktail has juice in it, shake it, if it doesn’t have juice stir it.
Tip 3 – Ice your Glasses
Matching your glass to your cocktail temperature wise can increase the quality of your drink. You can place your glass in the freezer or pour cold water and/or ice in the glass while you’re mixing. Same thing with warm drinks!
The fabulous folks at Paramount sent us Geeks the Cirque du Soleil: Worlds Away “Girls Night In Kit”, which included a copy of the new film, along with a grab bag of assorted Cirque treasures.*
Brad and I have seen Cirque shows the last two times we visited Vegas and I was excited to be able to bring their unique brand of quirky magic home with us. The film is beautifully shot, has a fanciful and fun story and I highly recommend it to anyone who is a fan of Cirque. It’s now available for purchase on Amazon. The special effects were stunning and really made me wish we had a 3D television to fully enjoy them. Maybe after the house renovation is done…
Here’s a few fun photos of the Girls Night In Kit and me being all silly and dramatic in the mask:
I thought given Cirque’s flair for dramatic dreamscapes, we definitely needed to incorporate some fire into our cocktail for the viewing. Having just learned how to create the classic cocktail Corpse Reviver #2 at a recent mixology class, it seemed like a good place to start. Here’s the recipe we sipped as we watched the film!
(Flaming) Corpse Reviver #2
Let me know if you try the drink and/or what you think of the movie everyone!
* Disclaimer: In case this wasn’t clear, the grab bag was provided free of charge by Paramount’s PR team. I wasn’t paid for this review, but I did enjoy the free popcorn!
I don’t watch the show Parks and Recreation, I’m more of an action/sci-fi/cop drama gal (go Castle!), but when I was digging around for some on-screen cocktail moments in preparation for an Oscars post that never materialized, I discovered something else. Apparently last month Parks & Rec poked a bit of fun at “Molecular Mixology” and had to dig up the clip to share with all of you!
With apologies to any Parks & Rec/Geeks with Drink crossover fans, here’s the recap: A group of geeky guys are failing at giving a bachelor party and one suggests going to the new bar in town that embraces molecular mixology, described as “an experimental new way to consume alcohol”. The guys agree all alcohol is good, so they head to the bar.
Cut to me laughing my craft-cocktail guzzling butt off as the waiter sets down cotton candy “beer” and a candy apple red globe holding some sort of steam vapor martini (“may I go ahead and chisel your aroma sphere?”). The gruff looking older man of the group who had so boisterously proclaimed there was no “wrong way” to consume alcohol moments before, promptly quips “This is the wrong way to consume alcohol.” before being quite horrified by his whiskey infused hand lotion. Well played Parks & Rec. Well played.
I know it’s a joke, but I am now trying to figure out how to make beer-flavored cotton candy not sound like a horrible idea.
This year for Valentine’s Day, I’d like to encourage everyone to skip on the long lines at your favorite restaurant or bar for Valentine’s Day and try your hand at a creating a custom cocktail for you and your love. Whether you want to recreate your favorite bar treat at home, riff on a classic cocktail or create an all new elixir, creating
A few tips on creating your own cocktail:
Need help finding the perfect cocktail? Check our cocktail recipes section. Let me know how you do!