Archive for the ‘Liquor’ Category

Techyum Roundup

January 7, 2008
bittersweets.jpg

The Return of BitterSweets

Electric Plane Flies in France

Whiskipedia is Live

Mafia Museum Being Built in Las Vegas

Say You Love Coca-Cola, Satan!

Image via Despair.com.

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In Liquor-Related News…

January 6, 2008

whisky.jpgRecently Paula Guran at Juno Books posted a great article about absinthe on the event of St. George Spirits in Alameda getting the legal okeedokee to offer the greeny liquor for sale. It’s been illegal in the US, though available illicitly, since the teens.

The initial run of absinthe from St. George sold out almost immediately; I had some at a New Year’s Eve party and it was freakin’ awesome. For those who don’t know, absinthe is a licorice-tastin’ liquor that’s bright green, gets cloudy with water, and is often served poured over a sugar cube. It is very strong and very much to my taste. It was a favorite of freaky artistic types in the Belle Époque, so how very strange that I should like it.

I also posted on Techyum about the liveness of whiskey reference site Whiskipedia:

I have been a devoted whisky drinker for some time, and have always been kind of horrified at the lack of simple and accessible info about whisky on the web; there are a handful of great blogs but not a good reference source.

Now there is, or (hopefully) will be. A post on The Scotch Blog alerts me to the fact that my prayers have been answered: Whiskipedia is live.

In related news, back in October there was an interesting article on moonshine from Slate:

Two Georgia men pleaded guilty on Wednesday to charges of operating a moonshine still in the Chattahoochee National Forest. One of the bootleggers faces up to 35 years in prison for his crimes: making the brew, selling it, and not paying taxes on the proceeds. Back in college, the Explainer had friends who brewed their own beer, and that wasn’t against the law. So why is moonshine still illegal?

Read more here. Lately I have been thinking a lot about what goes into liquor, as I appear to have a pretty serious wheat sensitivity, which limits what I can drink (as well as what I can eat, but who cares about that?). Not that I was planning on operating a still, but the idea had certainly crossed my mind given how hard it is to find liquor I can drink any more.

Eliminating wheat from my diet rules out most vodkas and other grain alcohols, but it’s really ambiguous from the available medical information (both mainstream and hippy-dippy) whether my beloved Scotch is a problem. From real-life experimentation, it is. Scotch is made with barley and has “other whole grains” added, and the other whole grains appear to include wheat. Doesn’t seem like the allergens should make it through the distillation process, but they seem to based on my, er, experimentation.

For the time being my working hypothesis based on what I’ve observed and read is that barley is OK for me (which it isn’t in sufferers of true Celiac Disease), and so is rye. That means that bourbon may or may not be OK for me to drink; corn whiskey, Canadian whiskey and Irish whiskey are also ambiguous, as they may or may not include wheat and distillers are typically close-mouthed about their ingredients. Rye whiskey, of which about 4 varieties are available locally, is distilled from rype instead of barley but may also contain wheat. Bushmill’s Single Malt says it is distilled from 100% barley; having had it, I can say it rocks, and it also is $35 a bottle.

Back down in my price range, the kind folks at Jim Beam inform me in an email:

Our bourbon is made from the fermentation of corn, rye, and malted barley. The fermented Bourdon is then distilled and aged in oak barrels. It is known that gluten can be found in the small grains such as rye, barley, oats, etc. However, it is generally accepted that the process of distillation excludes gluten in the finished product.

That’s about it…. most other whiskeys seem to not say what they don’t contain, just occasionally what they do. If barley and rye are safe, then Jim Beam is safe, though they seem to also be saying that even wheat-distilled whiskeys should be fine. Incidentally, they also advise me to speak with my physician about whether I should drink, which would doubtless be immensely helpful.

Similarly, Budweiser seems to be made of barley and rice, with no wheat invited. I am a little of a whiskey snob but not much of a beer snob at all, though I do enjoy the fine brewskis. Looks like it’s Bushmill’s single malt, Jim Beam and Budweiser for me for the time being… a strange cocktail, but oh so appropriate for the convention in Vegas next week. What kind of lunatic could make it through that clusterfuck sober?

Image from Wikipedia.

In Liquor-Related News…

January 6, 2008

whisky.jpgRecently Paula Guran at Juno Books posted a great article about absinthe on the event of St. George Spirits in Alameda getting the legal okeedokee to offer the greeny liquor for sale. It’s been illegal in the US, though available illicitly, since the teens.

The initial run of absinthe from St. George sold out almost immediately; I had some at a New Year’s Eve party and it was freakin’ awesome. For those who don’t know, absinthe is a licorice-tastin’ liquor that’s bright green, gets cloudy with water, and is often served poured over a sugar cube. It is very strong and very much to my taste. It was a favorite of freaky artistic types in the Belle Époque, so how very strange that I should like it.

I also posted on Techyum about the liveness of whiskey reference site Whiskipedia:

I have been a devoted whisky drinker for some time, and have always been kind of horrified at the lack of simple and accessible info about whisky on the web; there are a handful of great blogs but not a good reference source.

Now there is, or (hopefully) will be. A post on The Scotch Blog alerts me to the fact that my prayers have been answered: Whiskipedia is live.

In related news, back in October there was an interesting article on moonshine from Slate:

Two Georgia men pleaded guilty on Wednesday to charges of operating a moonshine still in the Chattahoochee National Forest. One of the bootleggers faces up to 35 years in prison for his crimes: making the brew, selling it, and not paying taxes on the proceeds. Back in college, the Explainer had friends who brewed their own beer, and that wasn’t against the law. So why is moonshine still illegal?

Read more here. Lately I have been thinking a lot about what goes into liquor, as I appear to have a pretty serious wheat sensitivity, which limits what I can drink (as well as what I can eat, but who cares about that?). Not that I was planning on operating a still, but the idea had certainly crossed my mind given how hard it is to find liquor I can drink any more.

Eliminating wheat from my diet rules out most vodkas and other grain alcohols, but it’s really ambiguous from the available medical information (both mainstream and hippy-dippy) whether my beloved Scotch is a problem. From real-life experimentation, it is. Scotch is made with barley and has “other whole grains” added, and the other whole grains appear to include wheat. Doesn’t seem like the allergens should make it through the distillation process, but they seem to based on my, er, experimentation.

For the time being my working hypothesis based on what I’ve observed and read is that barley is OK for me (which it isn’t in sufferers of true Celiac Disease), and so is rye. That means that bourbon may or may not be OK for me to drink; corn whiskey, Canadian whiskey and Irish whiskey are also ambiguous, as they may or may not include wheat and distillers are typically close-mouthed about their ingredients. Rye whiskey, of which about 4 varieties are available locally, is distilled from rype instead of barley but may also contain wheat. Bushmill’s Single Malt says it is distilled from 100% barley; having had it, I can say it rocks, and it also is $35 a bottle.

Back down in my price range, the kind folks at Jim Beam inform me in an email:

Our bourbon is made from the fermentation of corn, rye, and malted barley. The fermented Bourdon is then distilled and aged in oak barrels. It is known that gluten can be found in the small grains such as rye, barley, oats, etc. However, it is generally accepted that the process of distillation excludes gluten in the finished product.

That’s about it…. most other whiskeys seem to not say what they don’t contain, just occasionally what they do. If barley and rye are safe, then Jim Beam is safe, though they seem to also be saying that even wheat-distilled whiskeys should be fine. Incidentally, they also advise me to speak with my physician about whether I should drink, which would doubtless be immensely helpful.

Similarly, Budweiser seems to be made of barley and rice, with no wheat invited. I am a little of a whiskey snob but not much of a beer snob at all, though I do enjoy the fine brewskis. Looks like it’s Bushmill’s single malt, Jim Beam and Budweiser for me for the time being… a strange cocktail, but oh so appropriate for the convention in Vegas next week. What kind of lunatic could make it through that clusterfuck sober?

Image from Wikipedia.

Dr. Sketchy’s Anti-Art Show, NYC

November 29, 2007

Surely you don’t require a tutorial in the sordid ways of Dr. Sketchy’s Anti-Art School? Having begun its corrupt debauchment of conurbations worldwide by sleazing up New York (kind of a gimme), this rampant rendezvous of ravishment has moved on to purvey its own sordid brand of pastel-smudged skullduggery in the artistic communities of more than two dozen cities. Essentially a burlesque-flavored artistic salon and life drawing session with enormous quantities of liquor and bizarre costumes inspired by anything from Marie Antoinette to Allan Quatermain to Jurassic Park, Dr. Sketchy’s has become a phenomenon, fueling artistic development in the developmental and, perhaps more importantly, encouraging them to fall down.

Read more at Eros Zine.

Miss Trannyshack 2007

October 30, 2007

In San Francisco, we embrace diversity. Freaks of every stripe are welcome here. Folsom Street Fair arrives and the investment bankers break out their chaps and black leather G-strings; Dore Alley sees typically staid accountants gobbling vitamins like Jujubees to provide a more refreshing golden shower experience for the philosophy professor they plan to hogtie outside of Starbucks; each October you should probably plan on seeing your orthodontist in a fishnet body stocking; come Pride season, law librarians paint themselves gold and pole-dance on flatbed trucks creeping down Market Street to the 160 BPM remix of “Fuck the Pain Away.”


Ms. Sandra Bernhard,
photo by Jason Odell

But there’s one night each year when we all batten down the hatches and lock up our daughters, or at least our daughters’ wardrobes, when San Franciscans hoard our sequins and prepare to defend with bitchslaps that prized taffeta ball gown we scored at Buffalo Exchange, when worldwide mascara futures oscillate like Paris Hilton at last call and novelty exporters in Shanghai puzzle at a West Coast run on rhinestone-studded cigarette holders. These two words strike terror, hilarity, and tiara-craving fanaticism into the heart of San Francisco residents: MISS. TRANNYSHACK. Or wait, maybe that’s three words, depending on how many mojitos you’ve had and whether you can still spell.

Read more at Eros Zine.

Extra Action Marching Band Seeks Flag Team Members

September 22, 2007

Li’l Mike at SF Metblogs informs us that the incomparable Extra Action Marching Band is looking for new members of its dirty-dancin’ flag team:

You don’t need to play a tuba, or memorize complex musical charts… you just need to move & groove with some distinctly discernible enthusiasm…The pay is apparently low to non-existent, but according to their fearless leaders, “rewards are vastly beyond logic and defy description

Which I think is a nice way of saying that this is the drinkin’-est, smokin’-est, sluttiest, dirtiest, most hangover-burdened marching band that ever kicked marching band ass and took marching band names. If the EAMB held “Band Camp” it would consist of taking over a Bakersfield Motel 6 and turning it into a smoking pile of butt-laced rubble with a trail of empties leading to and from the nearest BevMo. They’re animals. Animals, I tell you. Run. Hide. Cower.

Image via EAMB MySpace page.

Beer in Space

July 31, 2007

wine.jpg

 In the wake of NASA’s Drunks in Space scandal, New Scientist offers a short history of beer in space, not to mention wine:

In 1969, Buzz Aldrin took communion after landing on the Moon, sipping wine from a small chalice. In the Moon’s feeble gravity, he later wrote, the wine swirled like syrup around the cup.

beer1.jpgBut it ain’t all reverent blood-of-Christ swirling; in fact, when it comes to the brewskis, the swirling may not be at all reverent:

Beyond the challenge of producing beer in space is the problem of serving it, says Jonathan Clark, a former flight surgeon and now the space medicine liaison for the National Space Biomedical Research Institute in Houston, Texas, US. Without gravity, bubbles don’t rise, so “obviously the foam isn’t going to come to a head”, Clark told New Scientist. The answer, Dutch researchers suggested in 2000, is to store beer in a flexible membrane inside a barrel. Air can be pumped between the barrel and the membrane, forcing the beer out of a tap. Astronauts could then use straws to suck up blobs of beer (see Beer balls).

Unfortunately for thirsty astronauts, beer is poorly suited to space consumption because of the gas it includes. Without gravity to draw liquids to the bottoms of their stomachs, leaving gases at the top, astronauts tend to produce wet burps. “That’s one of the reasons why we don’t have carbonated beverages on the space menu,” NASA spokesperson William Jeffs told New Scientist.

Which is not something I needed to know — I have too-fond memories of “rations of gin” from The Martian Chronicles. My fantasy of space flight will always be a ’40s and ’50s fantasy, with cocktails and cigarettes the whole way. And who can forget that the Russians, who allowed consumption of liquor during their space program, also pioneered research into sex in space? Which Violet Blue, incidentally, provides a helpful guide to here, in case you ever find yourself liquored-up and ready to procreate with uniformed Russian space sluts.

beer2.jpg

  

Photos from Wikipedia; left, wooden model of ancient Egyptian beermaking, from the Rosicrucian museum in San Jose.

Drawings of Audacia Ray From Dr. Sketchy’s

July 27, 2007

bigal11.jpgThere are some great drawings of Audacia Ray from the last Dr. Sketchy’s over at her blog, Waking Vixen. Drop by and check them out! And don’t forget to check out the Dr Sketchy’s Barbary Coast Flickr Pool for even more pix of Audacia!

Drawing of Audacia Ray by Big Al, BigAlArt.com

Drawings of Audacia Ray From Dr. Sketchy’s

July 27, 2007

bigal11.jpgThere are some great drawings of Audacia Ray from the last Dr. Sketchy’s over at her blog, Waking Vixen. Drop by and check them out! And don’t forget to check out the Dr Sketchy’s Barbary Coast Flickr Pool for even more pix of Audacia!

Drawing of Audacia Ray by Big Al, BigAlArt.com

Reminder: Dr. Sketchy’s Barbary Coast this weekend in San Francisco

July 20, 2007

We’re pleased to announce that New York writer, model and superstar Audacia Ray will be posing at Dr. Sketchy’s Barbary Coast on Sunday, July 22, 4-7pm. Check out the Eros Zine profile of Audacia or her blog, Waking Vixen, for more info about her!

 Seating is limited, so get there early! Refreshments will be available for a donation.

daciasketchysflyer2.jpg

Dr. Sketchy’s Barbary Coast
Sunday, July 22, 4-7pm
at Bombshell Betty’s, 715 Bryant Street #102 @ 5th Street (look for
the red door).
Price: $10 general, $5 students

This Sketchy’s model: Audacia Ray, author, blogger, model, porn
actress, podcaster, blogcaster, authcaster, castoffer… Renaissance
chick, that’s what we’re getting at.

New Yorker Dacia is on a quest to sully the moral landscape of the
left coast with her own brand of brains-and-beauty velvet-gloved
bitch-slap. This special Barbary Coast tour is one of your few changes
to meet the Waking Vixen herself! She’s the author of the new
exploration of women and the tech-sex revolution, Naked on the
Internet: Hookups, Downloads and Cashing in on Internet Sexploration,
and she also deftly removes her garments before a slavering audience
of art-obsessed salivatarians — for a modest fee, you understand, and
don’t forget to tip!

Find out more about Audacia Ray at www.wakingvixen.com, and see
unspeakably lucscious renderings of her pendulous adorables and curvy
irresistibles at www.eros-zine.com, where she’s the lead story this
issue in an interview and pictorial.