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Showing posts from November, 2012

Coca Cola Vanilla

A couple of days ago, I have spotted the first time a Coca Cola Vanilla in the "normal" supermarket. Spinneys, Choithram and other specialty supermarket had it always... but usually for a much higher price.
I don't really know, why I have taken a can with me - I am a big sucker for normal coke [and here in the ME, it is still produced with real sugar] and I do love Cherry Coke as well. But once upon a time I used to hate Vanilla Coke. Because it was totally overflavored with vanillin. Artificial headache vanilla flavor. Awful!

They apparently redesigned the can - but not only this - they also [I don't know when] changed the formula. Gone is the vanillin, which was totally dominating. In is natural vanilla flavor which is not sticking out and is just a subtle note.
The ingredient list says, only natural flavors - and after tasting it, I believe it. Unfortunately the can comes from the US - means HFCS country.
But nevertheless it taste really good.

Now on my good mood…

Chosing Quality vs Bling Products

This will be a spirited post. We discussed already about quality of juices. Again I have to repeat my quote: One drink will be as good as its worst ingredient.

Identifying the quality of a distillate though might be more difficult as it seems. This is why spirit companies are spending millions and millions of dollars [much more as they are spending in R&D] into marketing. They want that customers connecting their product with a quality, which is sometimes not given...
Lets just begin.
Vodka: It still dazzles me, why people are so into vodka. It just doesn't make good drinks! And just the advantage, that you doesn't smell a lot like alcohol, is [at least in my world] not a perfect excuse to consume it... Anyway - sometimes you need vodka and at least in this post I won't judge. What you have to know about vodka is, that [other than the well orchestrated marketing messages] it is not hard to produce vodka. In fact it is really cheap to produce any vodka! Scientifically i…

Old Monk 7 years old

Not so long time ago, I had a loose get together with some drink industry friends.
As the conversation went along, I dropped, that I actually like Old Monk rum [to the great shock of the others].

For my uninitiated friends in the US and Europe: Old Monk 7 years old is a dark rum from India - and it is dirt cheap here in the Middle East [not to speak of India - where it can be procured for a fraction of it]. It is also No.3 selling rum world wide [but only, because the Indians are drinking it like water ;-) ].
If normal "imported" [yeah - everything is imported] rum will be around AED 80 [which is around $20] Old Monk cost you a cool AED 20 [$5.50].

And you know what - in my opinion it beats the more expensive Caribbean cousins hands down. But lets face it - it is not as good as Gosling [which is here even more expensive, though], but against Myers, Captain Morgan or Coruba it is not only keeping up - it displaces the competition!

It has very strong dark roast aromas: vanill…

Naming of Cocktails

Just spreading of the amusing prezi of Angus Winchester about naming cocktails.


The Name Game on Prezi

I am not very good with naming drinks. However as with cocktails overall, I am more conservative. Actually I think there is not much need for creating totally new drinks. As in cuisine, it is all about  remodeling and re-interpretation.

Anyway - have fun!

Why there are so few posts last days - race days at Yas Viceroy Hotel Abu Dhabi

I am just sitting at 6 in the morning to write a couple of posts, because I have a bad conscience, as there were rare posts the last couple of days and weeks.

Why? Abu Dhabi featured these days the F1 racing circus. The Yas Viceroy hotel [where I am working] is just in the middle of the track - it is kinda state of emergency here.
In Skylite - our rooftop bar we are featuring 2 bands - the crazy guys of Go Go Gadget and [the not less nutty] Eddie Jordan and the Robbers.

Just made a video of the soundcheck today. Enjoy...



The Best Alcohol-free Drink - Ipanema

Usually I call them [out of laziness] mocktails - but really I never liked this denomination.
As "mocktails" are usually long drinks, it is even twice wrong, to connect them to a cocktail [which is technically a short drink with alcohol]. 
Apart of this, I am not a big believer in mocktails. Sodas can be fantastic [home made grapefruit soda is fantastic, or homemade ginger ale, ginger beer or any other odd ingredient sodas]. Juices - fine. Lemonades - yes, refreshing and good. And iced teas - can be absolutely amazing. Hence you don't need sickly sweet syrupy juice mixtures.
But yes - there are few good ones.
Most of them a mimicking drinks with alcohol. You can make a pretty good alcohol-free Planters Punch, Hurricane or Mojito, if you are using Caribbean Syrup. Or you can use a juniper syrup for some alcohol-free gin drinks.
A drink which I got to know long time ago, very early in my career, is a bit a different beast [well - you cannot call an alcohol-free drink a bea…