Archive for the ‘Drinking’ Category

Tailgating Made Easy

December 7, 2010 2 comments

In order to properly enjoy a football game, one must start with the all-important tailgating party.  Those of you who know nothing about sports are probably asking, “What exactly is tailgating?”

Tailgating comes in many forms depending on which part of the country you are in.  Some people stick with the basics: chips and dip, grilled burgers and hot dogs, and other easy to prepare items.  Others turn the entire experience into culinary decadence by preparing anything from BBQ to crab boils to lobster rolls to sushi.  Tailgating has become so popular that you can catch the antics of amateur chefs on the Food Network’s “Tailgate Warriors” hosted by Allegations of Deliciousness’ second least favorite personality, Guy Fieri.

For those of us who grew up in the South and Midwest or for those who went to colleges with big football programs, tailgating is pretty much mandatory before entering a stadium to enjoy the game.  Tailgating is also quite popular before NFL (pro football) games.

Besides our love of food, J. Frankfurter and I also share a love for the New York Jets, regardless of the Jets’ ability to choke big time and break our little hearts.  We decided to go the Meadowlands this season and catch the Jets take on the Green Bay Packers with a couple of friends.

One of the joys of living in New York City is never having to drive because of all of the public transportation options.  However, when it comes to tailgating, a vehicle of some sort is necessary to carry passengers, food, beverages and cooking equipment to the game.  Although both of us lack access to a motor vehicle, we employed the services of one of the many professional tailgating outfits that can usually be found at your local stadium.

We decided to go with Tailgate Joe because the food and beer menu (all you can eat and drink for a mere $25/person) sounded like a great deal.  For our particular game, there was plenty of Kelso beer to accompany maple breakfast sausage biscuits, Taylor Ham pork roll sandwiches, chili dogs, cheeseburgers, meatball sliders and homemade cannolis.

The food was good, the crowd plentiful but not annoying (i.e., you never had to wait in line too long for refills on food and beer), and you didn’t have to deal with cleaning up right before the game.  Also, since we were so stuffed from hours of eating before kickoff, there was no need to spend lots of money inside the stadium for mediocre food.  We highly recommend the experience for anyone unable to cook up a menu of their own.


Sandra Lee Pushes The Limits Of “Mixology”

August 19, 2010 1 comment

Courtesy of Food Network Humor (no actual affiliation with the Food Network):  Sandra Lee loves her cocktails, and is always coming up with creative new ways to ingest booze.

As with her cooking , Sandra is not content to mix up the drab concoctions of yesteryear.  Moving beyond Manhattans, Sidecars and French 75s, Sandra seeks out bold new ingredients and combinations.  To get a flavor of Sandra’s flair for mixology, here is the recipe for her “Cruisin’ Cooler” (apparently to be drunk at the racetrack, sort of like mint juleps are drunk at the Kentucky Derby)

However – for the cutting edge mixologist, not every cocktail recipe that seems good in theory actually works out well in practice.  For every inspired combination like Gatorade and melon vodka, there may be a concept that does not fully work in the way intended.  Below, a frame-by-frame presentation of Sandra immediately after drinking another of her concoctions – “Farm Stand Lemonade”, consisting of lemonade, heavy cream and vodka.

Cocktail Spotlight: The Flaming Moe

July 21, 2010 4 comments

The harsh glare of our “cocktail spotlight” falls today on the drink made famous in season three, episode ten of The Simpsons – the Flaming Moe (AKA the Flaming Homer).  No longer just a figment of some TV writer’s imagination, the Flaming Moe is actually concocted (and presumably drunk) around the world, although, as you will see, the recipes vary quite a bit.

The underlying problem is this: The “official” recipe for the drink, as described by Homer, is quite vague:

I decided to mix the little bits that were left in every liquor bottle. In my haste, I had grabbed a bottle of the kid’s cough syrup. It passed the first test:  I didn’t go blind . . .  I don’t know the scientific explanation, but FIRE MADE IT GOOD.

However, there seem to be three essential elements: (1) bits of different liquor; (2) cough syrup; and (3) fire.  The following are several variations of the Flaming Moe recipe, which we will examine in turn in an attempt to determine which is closest to the platonic ideal of a Flaming Moe.

First, we have the 20th Century Fox sanctioned recipe, courtesy of the Official Simpsons “Flaming Moe’s Recipe Pint Glass”:

  • 4 oz. Tequila
  • 4 oz. Peppermint Schnapps
  • 4 oz. Creme de Menthe
  • 2 oz. Grape Soda
  • Mix ingredients into a shaker. Strain into a glass and pray.

BLARGGH!  The grape soda is obviously a cop out for liability purposes, since they don’t want to be encouraging any “off-label” uses of cough syrup.  Also, I have a hard time believing this is a serious recipe, based on the ingredients.  Maybe I’m wrong – really, its the Tequila-Peppermint Scnapps combo that gets me. or maybe its Tequila -Creme de menthe.

The next recipe comes from


  • 1 oz brandy
  • 1 oz peppermint schnapps
  • 1 oz sloe gin
  • 1 oz blackberry liqueur
  • 1 oz strawberry juice
  • cough syrup


  1. Pour all ingredients except the cough syrup in a highball glass.
  2. Stir.
  3. Add cough syrup.
  4. Ignite and extinguish before drinking.

Certainly a better effort than the one above, it sounds like it might be drinkable, although the cough syrup is bit of a wild card.  It seems like a bit of an afterthought, actually, thrown in just for the sake of the show. First of all, no amount of cough syrup is specified, which will obviously have a huge impact on the drink.  second, no specific flavor or brand is mentioned – there are numerous diferent flavors and types of cough syrup, each of which will react very differently with the other ingredients. Finally, the recipe seems to suggest that the cough syrup will ignite when lit, where it suggests adding it last, without stirring.  I find it very hard to believe that this will happen (although in fairness I am making an assumption).

Basically, this is a fruity cocktail with the second two essential elements (cough syrup, fire) tacked on in a slapdash manner.  Let’s keep going…..

Courtesy of Yahoo Answers

1 shot Kahlua
1 shot Sambuca
1 shot Baileys Irish Cream
1 shot blue Curacao

Pour Kahlua into warmed cocktail glass. Gently pour half Sambuca over back of spoon so it floats on top. Pour the Baileys and blue Curacao into 2 shot glasses. Pour remaining Sambuca into a warmed wine glass and carefully set alight. Pour it into the cocktail glass with care. Pour the Baileys and Curacao into lighted cocktail glass at the same time. Serve with a straw (when the flames die, obviously)

Wha?? Well, pretty complicated and also, where is the cough syrup?? This one seems to have at least gotten two of the essential elements right, and I have a much easier time believing that the Sambuca will burn.  Unlike the first entry, this seems like it might actually be drinkable.  So, not perfect but a better effort.

Okay, this next one, courtesy of .

  • 1 oz. Brandy
  • 1/2 oz. Blackberry Liqueur
  • 1 oz. Creme de Menthe
  • 1 oz. Pineapple Juice
  • 1 oz. Sloe Gin
  • 2 tbsp. Grape Cough Syrup (Krusty Non-Narkotik Kough Syrup)
  •  Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker. Add crushed ice and shake well. Strain into cocktail glass. Light on fire.

    This recipe appears to contain all three essential elements, and also looks like it might taste decent.  It gets points for specifying both a flavor and amount of cough syrup. My one complaint (without actually having tasted it) is that I  don’t think you can just light this drink, particularly after shaking it with ice.  But so far the best entry.

    Finally, courtesy of Boise Weekly, this is not a recipe although, if the description is accurate, the underlying recipe deserves an honorable mention.  Although it does not contain any of the essential elements, think of it as sort of an artistic interpretation: 

    Soon after the episode aired, some Finnish bartenders devised a recipe based on the fictional drink. The cocktail, called Salmiakki Koskenkorva, or Salmari for short, is made with a Finnish vodka flavored with ground-up salty licorice candy named Turkish Pepper. This candy contains ammonium chloride, giving the cocktail a black licorice and cough medicine taste. It has the unique side effect of stimulating the salivary glands, an effect similar to Homer’s ability to immediately drool around anything appetizing. The Salmari cocktail had its heyday in the 1990s, creating somewhat of a cocktail revolution in Finland at the time. Today it is apparently still a popular drink for tourists.

    In conclusion: for all aspiring mixologists and stunt drinkers who are determined to try the Flaming Moe, my suggestion, after my extensive research, would be to go with the Wikibartender recipe above.  However – assuming it won’t light, try pouring 151 or some other bad-ass booze very gently over the rounded side of a spoon onto the top of the drink, and then light that.


    R.I.P., “Sex On The Beach”

    What do an “Appletini,” a “Red-Headed Slut” and “Sex On The Beach” have in common?  Yes, the first may lead to the third with the second.  But more accurately, they are all cocktails – and even more accurately, they are all cocktails that are (or soon will be) officially and irrevocably dead and buried.  And I mean literally buried, with an actual funeral ceremony.

    Annually, the Tales Of The Cocktail conference is held in New Orleans, hosted by the New Orleans Culinary and Cultural Preservation Society.  The event is sort of like the Academy Awards for cocktail aficionados, “mixologists” (read: bartenders) and the spirits industry.  Notably, for each of the past three years the the conference has held a New Orleans-style burial for a cocktail that is deemed to be overly tired and ready for permanent retirement.  Starting at the Roosevelt Hotel, the casket is carried down Royal Street, amidst dancing attendees and brass band music, in true New Orleans style.

    In 2008, the “Appletini” was laid to rest.  The following year, the “Red-Headed Slut” was buried.   And this summer, “Sex On The Beach” will likewise settle into its final resting place.  These drinks are dead and buried.  They are not to be ordered, even ironically. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.

    On the right, an actual image of the Appletini funeral procession. For those readers who are suspicious of the picture’s authenticity, note the word “Appletini” printed on the minister’s sash (presumably, the following year the minister’s sash said “Red-Headed Slut”).


    Beers That Didn’t Make The Cut

    Beer companies are forever tinkering with their products, trying to latch onto current fads and tastes to create a new beer that looks so intriguing, you just have to try it.  Well, Bud Light Lime may have made it out the door, but many of these beer innovations wisely do not see the light of day.

    I have given big beer companies a hard time in the past for devoting their resources to coming up with stupid gimmicks to increase their sales, rather than just making their beer taste better.  However, I should give credit where credit is due – none of the following beers have in fact seen the light of day.  But never say never.  Thanks once again to’s photoshop archives, here are some rejected beers you won’t see on the shelves:

    Watch out that this beer does not appear in your goblet when your back is turned…..

    There is no cooler way to make an entrance than to saunter up to the bar and order a tall pint of this brew

    A taste of the exotic…….

    It looks like beer. It tastes like beer – but brother, it ain’t beer

    Actually not a beer, espcially for those that like their drinks strong and harmful.

    It’s (brewed from) people!  Allegations of Deliciousness will never tire of these timely Soylent Green jokes…..

    Categories: Drinking

    Midtown Survival Guide: St. Andrews

    June 4, 2010 Leave a comment


    St. Andrews bills itself as one of NYC’s few authentic Scottish pubs, but unlike most other “pubs'”at midtown, it actually has good drinks AND good food.  Perhaps most importantly, it has an extensive scotch menu – one of the largest in the city.  If you are looking for a good quality single malt and a bite to eat, it is surely the place to be.  On top of that, it has a decent beer selection, including Boddingtons on tap as well as Wee Heavy, a tasty dark Scottish brew.   In the no man’s land that is Midtown Manhattan, there are tons of overpriced bars and indistinguishable Irish pubs.  St. Andrews adds a twist to the selection with its emphasis on all things Scottish and may, dare I say, provide a reason to actually venture into midtown during non-working hours. 

    On top of that, it has very decent food – well beyond the typical “pub fare” one might expect at such a place.  There are Scottish classics (such as haggis, oatmeal-stuffed trout, and…uhh..cock-a-leekie soup) as well as more typical english pub food (bangers & mash, shephard’s pie).  Steak, lamb and seafood entrees are served in the restaurant section of the bar. 

    Finally, St. Andrews serves the best burger you will find in this part of midtown.   In fact, perhaps the premier power lunch in the neighborhood is a St. Andrews’ cheeseburger washed down with a pint of Boddington’s.   It will set you up right for an afternoon of staring at your computer monitor, to be sure.

    The space is sufficiently large that it is generally easy to find a table except at the very peak dinner hour (although it clears out noticeably after the pre-theater crowd has left).  This is midtown, so there are inevitably tourists and suits but the place manages to retain a nice, neighborhood feel to it despite its location and large size.  We’ve been coming long enough (and staying late enough) that the first question we get from the staff isn’t “Would you like a table?” or “Menu?” but “Boddingtons?”


    Trend Watch: Vodka Eyeballing

    June 3, 2010 2 comments

    Frustrated with how long it takes for straight vodka to work its way into your bloodstream and produce the desired level of drunkenness?  Well, now there’s a quicker and more efficient way to ingest your vodka: straight into your eye sockets, through the mucus membrane and into the bloodstream. 

    Of course, you’ll have to pour straight vodka into your eyeball – a small price to pay for getting drunk as much as minutes faster than the traditional method.  According to the Daily Mail, this fad is sweeping the US and the UK – so don’t get left behind!

    If you are still dubious, here is some video footage of “eyeballing” being performed.  First up, “Matt” takes a healthy eyeball shot, and spends several minutes recovering.

    Here, “Sean” demonstrates his technique, throwing his head back and shooting what looks like a kamikaze shot straight into his eyehole.

    Finally, “Carlo” helpfully provides a public service announcement warning us of the dangers of eyeballing, before tipping back his shot glass and taking an eyeful.

    Categories: Drinking Tags: ,