Category Archives: alcohol

Meet me at the Coach House and where else to go on Thanksgiving Eve

Those last two posts on Thanksgiving Day restaurants that are serving dinner or preparing take-out meals nearly wiped me out with all the information, I can now set my sights on Thanksgiving Eve.

If you’re  out and about showing out-of-towners a good time or you grew up here and return home to catch up with friends at the local watering hole, the night before Thanksgiving can be just as big a deal as the turkey and football the next day.

If you mention Thanksgiving Eve to most in these parts two places come to mind…..El Chorro Lodge in Paradise Valley and Coach House Tavern in downtown Scottsdale. Join me at the Coach House just after sunset before the line forms and I’m sure many will make an appearance at both establishments.

It won’t be your typical Wednesday at Sorso Wine Room and The Park as they start the Thanksgiving celebration a day early.

Thanksgiving Eve at Sorso Wine Room

If you live in the northeast valley and prefer to stay closer to home  Sorso Wine Room at The Scottsdale Quarter will start the celebrating with an all day Happy Hour with 2 for 1 house wines by the glass and draft beers.

Food special will be available including the Brussels Board ($8), The Dip($8) and select Bruschetta at 3 for $10.

Sorso Wine Room is at 15323 N Scottsdale Rd #150, Scottsdale http://sorsowineroom.com/ Thanksgiving Eve

The Park in downtown Phoenix

If you’re going to be in central or downtown Phoenix, The Park will be hosting a Thanksgiving Eve Bash with MillerCoors. The Bash starts at 8 p.m. but $5 pumpkin spice specialty cocktails and ales will be available all day.

Guest are encouraged to bring a can(s) of food for the Can 4 Can Hurricane Relief Food Drive. Those that bring a can will receive a penny can of a MillerCoors product.

The Park is at 3 S. 2nd St., Phoenix http://thepark.bar/

The Park

I hope to see you out and about  and where ever you go be smart, safe and have a  Happy Thanksgiving!

Martin Miller’s Gin pushes into U.S. market meet demand.

As the cocktail culture continues and gin based cocktails helping to drive sales, Martin Miller’s Gin is making a big push to increase distribution in the United States to help with demand. Started in 1999 by 3 friends setting out to create the finest, high quality gin that all can enjoy. They have succeeded as Miller’s is a cult classic in over 45 countries including the United Kingdom and Spain where there is a big gin culture.
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Using only the finest ingredients, 2 distillation methods (Juniper & botanicals another for citrus elements) for balance and enhanced citrus flavor and water from Iceland where the water is the softest in the world, Martin Miller’s Gin is the world’s largest independent gin brand in the world and sets the standard in the super premium gin category.

Andreas Versteegh, David Bromige and Martin Miller, set out to create the softest and refreshing gin on the market after staring at their lackluster gin and tonics at a Notting Hill bar realizing the opportunity for a super premium gin. Wanting to keep with gin’s romantic history they set out to find a distiller that would use traditional distilling methods. The gin is distilled in a single pot dating back to 1904 named Angela.

2008 Alvear Pedro Ximenez (PX) de Anada sherry.

Alvear Pedro Ximenez de Anada

This delicious dessert wine from Spain is what one would expect from a winery that dates back to 1729. Located in the southern town of Montilla in Andalusia region, the Alevar family uses grapes from their vineyards as well as purchase grapes for their sherries.

This 100% Pedro Ximenez is sweet yet balanced and with nice lingering flavors of raisins, chocolate and maple. Food pairings include pastries & sweet meats after a meal. Also over ice and with soda it makes for a cooling drink. Only 300 cases of this wine comes in to the U.S.

Original Sparkling Red Wine Cocktail of Spain Makes U.S. Debut at Arizona’s Run with the Bulls

TINTANO a refreshing, sparkling tradition of Spanish culture

A drink familiar to most who have lived in or visited Spain has finally made its way to the United States and will make its debut at another iconic Spain event – Arizona’s own Running With the Bulls in Cave Creek, Ariz., on October 19 & 20.

Tintano is a sparkling red wine cocktail based on Spain’s famous wine beverage, Tinto de Verano. In Southern Spain, this popular beverage is composed of red wine with soda water typically served over ice with a squeeze of lemon or lime. The Tintano formula is made from a high quality 100 percent Spanish Tempranillo wine fused with light carbonation. It is 4.5% ABV, very low sugar and carbohydrates and has only 85 calories per 8.5 ounce serving. It comes in bottles of 200ml, 500 ml, 750ml 1 liter, and 1.5 liters.

Tintano is a major sponsor of the Running of the Bulls USA in Cave Creek, Ariz., on Saturday, October 20. According to Tintano Western Sales Director Marco Sanders – this Spanish-inspired event is the ideal venue to introduce Tintano to the U.S. market.

“Anyone who has been to Spain or the Running of the Bulls in Pamplona will be familiar with Tintano. It is so much a part of the culture, lifestyle and festivities of the Spanish people.” He says. “We are proud to be the first (and only) to introduce this refreshingly delicious Spanish beverage to the U.S. consumer, and proud to sponsor the Running of the Bulls USA. We’re excited to share this unique and beautiful drink in such an appropriately festive setting.”

Tintano will have three tents at the Running of the Bulls, including a Tintano lounge, where participants and spectators can sample and enjoy the cocktail. It is also hosting two events for participants the night before the run.

“The night before the runs in Pamplona are a big party. There is no sleep, only excitement and celebration. We will create some of that excitement and atmosphere in Cave Creek,” says Sanders.

Saturday, October 20 9:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
5632 E. Yucca Road, Cave Creek, AZ

The Psychology of Wine

As wine has become more mainstream in the last 15 years, it’s no doubt the wine industry now has a big spectrum from the small wineries who have a passion for wine making or the big bulk producer where it has become more about the dollars and cents of it all. Along with the growth has been the marketing of wine making it more or less a commodity in some circles. Marketers using psychology to get in your head and trying to get you to buy their wine. Whether it’s seeing a lot of the product making you think “there’s a lot so, it has to be good” mentality or just getting you to look at it and taking a mental note by using colored boxes, funky labels or sponsorships to catch your eye.

The wine media is just as guilty of getting in your head with its 100 point ratings system in some cases. Equating a number with the opinion of a few select people, who usually look for different things than the casual drinker will. You already know you like the wine before you pull the cork as you’ve subliminally told yourself based on the score or price for that matter. Not to mention you probably just looked at the score and didn’t even read the comments. If you did you would probably buy lesser scored wines as some sound really good.

The above is based on what’s outside the bottle, what about the wine itself? Manipulating it to make you like it with, added sugar (chaptalization) to drive up alcohol content, not to mention the big oak and fruit people seem to gravitate to. Having done plenty of R&D, large wine companies know how to market what is the best flavor profile to please the masses to be repeat customers.

Be assured there are things you can do to avoid letting the marketers get in your head and influence your decision making process. One way is by keeping an open mind, realizing everybody’s objective is to SELL. Whether it the actual winery and it’s packaging or the magazines, bloggers and it’s ratings system to sell magazines and ad space(Conflict of Interest??) or build traffic. Everybody has an agenda so take everything with a grain of salt..and a glass of wine.