Posts tagged ‘booze’

Cocktail Terminology

By Chad Upton | Editor

Ordering a cocktail can be as confusing as ordering at starbucks. Here’s a quick guide to help you get it your way.

  • on the rocks – on ice (“rocks”)
  • straight up – chilled in a shaker and strained to remove ice (aka “up” or “shaken”)
  • stirred – served on ice and stirred with a bar spoon
  • neat – served at room temperature, no ice
  • back – a glass of non-alcoholic liquid served with your cocktail, such as water for mixing with Whiskey

If you like martinis, they have a language of their own. Traditionally, a martini is made with gin and dry vermouth, then garnished with a green olive. Many variations have become popular, especially swapping top shelf vodka with gin. Here are some terms for traditional martinis:

  • dry – little to no vermouth
  • wet – extra vermouth
  • dirty – extra olive juice, making it look “dirty” (murky)
  • perfect – equal parts dry and sweet vermouth are used

Cheers!

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Photo: Adrian Hoffmann (cc)

Sources: Wikipedia (on the rocks, martini),  about.com, drinksmixer.com

March 11, 2011 at 2:00 am 7 comments

Jagermeister Does Not Contain Deer Blood

By Chad Upton | Editor

The word “Jägermeister” was first used in 1934 as the name for senior gamekeepers in the German civil service.

In English, Jägermeister translates to “hunt-master,” but most people know it better as a bitter sweet liqueur.

It was developed by Curt Mast in 1935 as an after meal digestif (to aid digestion). It’s named after the German hunt master and carries a stag on the front of the bottle because the inventor was an avid hunter. The glowing cross above the deer’s head pays homage to the patron saints of hunters, Saint Hubertus (Hubert) and Saint Eustace.

A common rumor is that Jagermeister contains deer or elk blood, although that has been debunked.

There are also rumors that it was originally used as a cough syrup. Although it might taste like it, Jägermeister was not marketed as a cough syrup, but it was introduced during the era of patent medicines and it is and has always been a digestif — a liqueur made from bitter herbs, believed to aid digestion.

Despite the fact that it was not designed to be medicine, alcohol was often used as a medicine in those times, even given to babies and young children. Frankly, that hasn’t changed all that much, the cough syrup Nyquil still contains alcohol.

Often referred to as “Jager” it is commonly mixed with RedBull to create a “Jager Bomb” (or “Jager Blaster” in some places).

Jägermeister is 35% alcohol by volume (70 proof). It contains 56 herbs, roots, fruits and a variety of spices including: anise, saffron, citrus peel, licorice, ginger, ginseng, juniper berries and even poppy seeds. These ingredients are pressed and steeped in a water/alcohol mixture for a few days before being filtered. Then it gets similar treatment to fine wines — it is aged in Oak barrels to further enhance the flavor (for about a year).

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Photo: Ehsan Roudiani (cc)

Sources: The Bitter Truth, Everyday Drinkers, Snopes, Wikipedia (Jägermeister),

October 15, 2010 at 3:00 am 8 comments

Altitude Does Not Increase the Effect of Alcohol

By Chad Upton | Editor

Whether you’re in a plane, at the top of a ski hill or reading this in the mile high city, your body will metabolize alcohol exactly the same in all cases.

It is a common myth that you get drunk at high altitude much faster than at lower altitudes. In fact, I set out to research why this is the case, only to find out it’s not the truth.

As you can probably imagine, they didn’t have any trouble finding volunteers to help them get to the bottom of this — it has been studied and studied and studied and studied (PDF).

Even without alcohol, high altitudes can induce high-altitude sickness, which happens because there is less oxygen in the air. Because the symptoms are much the same as a hangover (headache, nausea, vomiting…etc), the effects of alcohol are often confused with high-altitude sickness. In fact, there is a study that shows Alcohol can impede the initial stages of adapting to high altitude; therefore, it is recommended that people do not drink for the first couple days while their body acclimatizes to the lower oxygen levels of high altitudes.

A study with alpine skiers in Austria tested blood-alcohol content at sea-level and at 10,000 feet. After drinking a liter of beer, their blood-alcohol levels were the same regardless of altitude.

An FAA study (PDF) found that both alcohol and altitude affect pilot performance, but there was no interaction between the two. Altitude does affect your ability to perform tasks, but that effect is present with or without alcohol. Another US government funded study found the same thing, concluding, “there was no synergistic interactive effect of alcohol and altitude on either breathalyzer readings or performance scores.”

From my observations, college loans are another popular way to get government money to study the effects of alcohol.

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Sources: Pub Med, High Altitude, Annals, FAA (PDF), AHA

Photo: evilmidori (cc)

Relevant:

Professionals should always supervise detox from alcohol and other drugs to prevent any untoward medical mishaps.

May 19, 2010 at 5:00 am 8 comments


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