I admit that I am a bit in the dark about this one. I have never tried a THC product and as for CBD, I'm not 100% convinced of its seemingly all encompassing powers. The muscle rub, absolute godsend. The drops and edibles? Well, convince me. I do see the huge potential for this new avenue in the beverage industry.
However, I have questions. Lots of questions.
For starters, what does the percent THC or CBD mean to me as a drinker? I know what 10% alcohol will do to me and have fair understanding of my tolerance, but as one who has never partaken in any THC product and hasn't had a CBD product I ingest that works, I don't know what that percentage means. What "buzz" am I going to get off of that and for how long? Are we talking happy, paranoid, chill, or straight out space cadet?
From a legal standpoint, how on earth would it be regulated at a bar? Currently I believe, TCH or CBD products are not sold for on premise consumption. You have to buy them and take them home to enjoy. At least I believe thats how it works in the states. I think I recall seeing some folks having a CBD spiked pot of tea at a shop when I was in Spain but that how it works here. As a server in my younger days, I know what to look for as the signs when someone may be a bit over their limit, but can someone be too chill off THC beverages? Anyway, when we have alcohol we can test the blood alcohol content to see if someone is over the limit. How do you test CBD or THC? Is that even a concern?
What about taste? Again never had a THC beverage or at all, but the CBD I have tried is typically a touch skunky, herby, or funky if its the oil. Is this something we can expect with the beverages? I don't mind herbaceous flavors, but skunky might be a bit much for me to truly enjoy while sitting at the bar. Flavor does have to be a consideration.
Finally, as I understand, these products are only in package format (can or bottle), but with the eruption of this market it can't be long before we're considering applying this to draft options as well. Which brings to mind a number of technical questions on how it will be dispensed. For example, will it be like beer pushed with CO2 or would it be a still beverage? How is it going to look in a glass? Foamy? Cloudy? Served in a pint or a cocktail glass?
I am awash with questions. I am also out of my element here, and I apologize if any of ya'll who do enjoy are offended. I clearly do not know a lot about this topic and what I have learned about THC probably came from television.
Luckily, I have less than a week to wait to get some answers. On July 25th, the first Global Cannabis Drinks Expo will be held in San Francisco, CA. I am one of the lucky carriers of an exhibitor badge to that event, attending for both my professional and personal curiosity. Seems as though I am not the only one trying to get the lay of the land in this high-flying new industry. With a number of companies in attendance and quite a few presentations on what the THC and CBD beverage industry bring to the table, those in attendance will be sure to get ample information. I already have a notebook primed and ready to take in all the info and answers to my questions. I am a glutton for information.
So the next post will hopefully full of some answers to these questions and surely will possess more information than I have now. Also since I will be in San Francisco, may contain speakeasy adventures, walk through Chinatown, and my first trip to Napa and Sonoma. When in Rome right?
If you have questions on THC/CBD beverages, please share them. I haven't thought of them all and would love to know what inquiries you may have as well. It's a brave new beverage world after all.
I am proud to say I fell under the spell of that organizing enchantress Marie Kondo. Slightly ashamed because I didn’t actually read the book or watch the Netflix show. My mom told me, and I watched a YouTube video on my way back from Belgium so I could ensure all my clothes would fit in the suitcase with my bottle purchases. Usually there are a lot of those so figuring out how to make it all fit and be under weight is quite the feat. Probably why I’ve lost two suitcases already… however also why I excel at Tetris.
Anyway, one week I decided it was time to “Tidy up” the house, including my honey’s side of the closet which was quite the exercise. He did not take the mantra of “Does this spark joy” seriously at all, but at the end of it his closet was lighter a few pairs of old clothes and the clown red boat shoes I despised were gone. Granted I didn’t even ask if those sparked him joy… they don’t spark me with any joy when he walks out in them. Cheers to victory in that they are now gone for good, donated to benefit someone else who will hopefully love them more than I did.
For those who don’t know, Marie Kondo is the magical author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing (Available on Amazon) , also a series on Netflix (Check it out via her page). Her method, the KonMari method, is about gathering all of your belongings, by category not literally all at once and keeping those items that spark joy. I took my tidying up room by room as it seemed to be the best way to tackle some serious spring cleaning as well. She claims this method is founded in Shinto belief of the energy or divine spirit of things. I’m not sure my flip-flops have a divine spirit, but it made me realize the ones being held together by a bread bag clip were probably at the end of their divine spirit. Don’t judge.
Again I haven’t officially read her book or watched her series though one is in my Amazon cart and the other in my Netflix list. Shockingly though her YouTube videos will make you thrilled to refold every scrap of clothing in your dresser and beyond surprised to learn you’ve been folding socks wrong your entire life. Rolling them into a sock ball to keep matching pairs together ruins the elastic in the sock. Folding them the Kondo way keeps them “alive” longer and has them taking up far less space in your suitcase. I now fold my underwear and look at a pile of laundry like a meditation exercise (her folding is alarmingly calming). Though I don't always show the garment my love and affection...it survived the tidy. It knows how I feel. Shows you can always learn something new. I’d say I learned to fold all things better, but my mother had an hour and a half class with my entire family on how to fold a towel after she lost her shit at the linen closet. We folded every towel in that house… twice. I can fold me some towels.
As I said I went room by room in my house. Closets, bathrooms, and kitchen. However, when I got to my bar, I found that when I asked, “Does this spark joy?” to the stuff in my bar, the answer was emphatically yes. Being completely transparent with you, NOTHING was removed from my bar. Not a glass, mixer, or bottle. I started with six bourbons and I ended with six bourbons. I even kept the three bottles of absinthe I have, and I haven’t opened two of them. However, though everything causes joy, I did take a moment to organize my vast collection to better be able to find what I’m looking for in the midst of creating. I doubt it lasts through the first cocktail party, as my inebriated mind is not nearly so organized. I do always manage to wash my face and brush my teeth though. Priorities.
Our house has officially been KonMari’d and we’re perfectly joyous about it. Well I am. My honey and the fur babies could care less. It’s worth a toast!
How many of you have tried the KonMari method? How many want to go refold their laundry now? It is scary how that happens. Cheers!
Happy Fourth of July everyone!
I always wondered what the Founding Fathers toasted with when they finished signing the Declaration of Independence. I mean you just signed something that will either make a bright new future or be the end of you. I would need a drink. Probably more than one. The Founding Fathers were no exception. Turns out that they did toast to their handiwork and the drink they were raising would have been Madeira.
Madeira, for those who aren't familiar, is a fortified wine from Portugal. In the time of our Founding Fathers, unfortified wines would spoil rather quickly due to the heat encountered during travel, but winemakers soon discovered that by adding brandy to stabilize and preserve the wine, they were able to create something that not only survived the heat and long travel time, but something that actually improved the flavor. Thus this rich wine became the drink of choice for many celebrations, including the signing of the Declaration of Independence, the Inauguration our first president, George Washington (who was reported to enjoy a bottle of the stuff almost daily), and the Louisiana Purchase. Simply put if you had something to celebrate at the time, you needed a bottle of Madeira.
Though I find this exceptionally interesting, and would love to really honor Independence Day as my Founding Fathers did, I can't justify nor really want to try imbibing in a 17-20% alcohol in the middle of a southern summer when temps are hovering in the nineties. Not my idea of a poolside beverage. I prefer to celebrate the day with beer and the fireworks with a sparkler.
Usually I endeavor to find beers made in the USA to celebrate Independence Day. However, with a bounty of local breweries lining the shelves in shops and some breweries just a short drive, it's not hard to find something made in the States. So this year I decided to go with the most iconically American can art I could find. I mean if I am to sport the stars and stripes then my beer can should also show its patriotic side. I picked up the Summer variety pack from 21st Amendment Brewery in California. I've always loved their monument inspired designs and they make great beer to boot. I mean what could be more patriotic than drinking from a can stamped with the image of Lady Liberty or Abraham Lincoln and the rest of the Rushmore gang? Nothing, thats what.
Also, as we're celebrating, I snagged a bottle of bubbles and pack of sparklers (totally not made in the USA) so I may have my sparkles and drink them too. Since when did they start carding people for buying sparklers? The firework, not my bottle of bubbles. I mean, brilliant because yes, you do have to light them on fire, and yes, you should be responsible with fire, but I was completely unaware they started carding for these. They carded for the poppers, the little white balls you throw on the ground to pop). I got carded twice, which both made me feel wonderfully youthful and somewhat concerned that I wasn't dressed accordingly.
Anyway, happy celebrating to you all, my dear readers! Please watch the little ones and the fur babies, who both get startled when the sparks fly. Take caution and remember that fireworks and alcohol only mix as a spectator sport, from a distance. Seriously don't drink and light fireworks.
Cheers to Independence and Happy Fourth ya'll! .
It would be easy to tell you that I’ve been far too busy lately to write any posts. Not enough time in the day, writer’s block, whatever. Truth be told I did start a new job 3 months ago. Truth be told I have been travelling quite a bit in this new role. I’ve lost two suitcases so far damaged beyond compare by the rough handling at the airport. Truth be told I have been exhausted.
However, If I’m honest with myself and with you, there was always a bit of time that could have been found to write. I could have written on the planes to and from my various destinations. I could have carved out a few minutes during my morning cup of tea. I could have, but fact is I didn’t, and a host of unrealized posts remained stuck in my brain.
Posting was daunting. It required more work and effort, which after a long day in a new role, often in a new place, and I didn’t have in me. Because I forgot why I started all of this. I forgot why I chose to write a blog about beverage and celebration. I forgot my why.
Cheerswith was started to celebrate all the brilliance that life brings our way. It was started to share and discover new beverages, beverage history & culture, and how what we enjoy drinking, from Apple cider to Zinfandel, came to be. But is wasn’t just to share my passion of beverages. It was to celebrate the reasons to raise a glass. To in effect, celebrate the moments worth toasting to. Grand moments. Small moments. Personal victory moments. Hell, I will cheers to just getting out of the bed if that’s the best the day brings. It’s about finding moments to celebrate in each and every day.
I lost sight of that briefly. I forgot to take a breath and find something, anything to raise a glass too. I apologize.
So revitalized, refreshed, and will a freshly filled glass, I raise the next round to the why of Cheerswith. To you, my delightful readers whomever and wherever you are. To continuing to celebrate all the ways you raise, clink, sip, guzzle, drink and most affectionately cheers!
I'm not known for my fondness of green dyed beer. In my family St.Patrick's day starts with a Guinness and ends with an Irish whiskey. Somewhere in between there's an Irish breakfast and some soda bread. We wear green, we don't drink green.
Green dyed beer is unanimously an American construct. Not in the least bit Irish, except maybe in inspiration. In fact, Irish people were still being introduced to green pints well into the 1980s. Yet every year, pints and pints of emerald colored beer march across bars from coast to coast in honor of St. Patrick. What I'd like to know is who was the first person to think, "you know beer is good, but green beer? You might just have something there!"
Some say the inspiration for the green colored beer may have come from the Irish tradition of "drowning the shamrock." On St. Patrick's night, the last pint or more appropriately the last glass of whiskey, gets a shamrock added to it in honor of the whiskey swigging saint himself. Then once the glass is empty, the drinker tosses the drunken shamrock over their left shoulder, which I can only think is for luck. I actually kind of love this tradition and am totally going to christen the last drink of the night with a shamrock. Though sadly I think my drowned shamrock will probably be fake... cause I have no idea where to find a real one. Also what happens if you drink the shamrock? Is that like less luck? Someone weigh in here!
It's quite possible that this was the inspiration for Dr. Thomas H. Curtin, the supposed creator of the green dyed pint. In 1914 Dr. Curtin, a coroner's physician, decided to contribute to his Bronx social club's festivities by bringing a round of brightly green beer. It was of course a hit and a number of fans asked for his recipe. All he would say of the ingredients was that he added a drop of "wash blue" to an unspecified volume of beer. Considering the number of recipe's now on the internet for how to make green beer (really ya'll?! You need a recipe for adding food coloring to beer?!) he hardly need bother being so cryptic. Especially since he most likely kinda poisoned his guests. "Wash Blue" is an iron powder that was added to laundry to brighten the whites. Probably not the greatest thing to have people guzzling by the pint. What doesn't kill you right?
However, there is also an article from 1910 that claims that a bartender at the First Avenue Bar in Spokane was serving green colored pints to patriotic Irishmen or anyone else who wanted to enjoy them. The journalist covering the story had one of the most priceless reactions. He wrote, "It tastes like beer, but looks like paint," which seems like his first impression. Then he had a few two many and thought he needed to elaborate his description of the beer. He added " or rather like deep green waves in mid ocean with the sun striking through them." Drunken poetry.
It tastes like beer, but looks like paint,
Straight from Seedlip Garden 108 cocktail inspiration page, the Watermelon sour involves a watermelon basil Shrub, egg white and Seedlip Garden 108. I followed this recipe for watermelon shrub and muddled the basil in the bottom of a shaker.
1 ¾ oz. Seedlip Garden 108
2/3 oz. Watermelon Shrub
2-3 fresh basil leaves
Muddle the basil leaves in the bottom of a shaker. Add ice, Seedlip, shrub, and egg white. Shake vigorously. Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with a thin watermelon slice.
Fresh from my own garden, the Enviable Green-tini, combines fresh flavors of summer into this refreshing cocktail.
1.5oz. Seedlip Garden 108
3/4oz. Lime Juice
1/2 oz. sweetener
Muddle the mint in the bottom of a shaker pint. Combine the Seedlip, lime, sweetener and egg white over ice and shake vigorously. Strain into cocktail glass and garnish with pea shoot or mint sprig.
Roots Good for You
I studied abroad in Korea when I was a kid and my host mother continuously said, “it’s good for you” about everything. Seriously everything that was Korean was good for you. Even M&M’s. This cocktail is actually excellent for you and great as an after-dinner sipper to aide in that digestion.
1.5oz. Seedlip Garden 108
1oz. Carrot Juice
2 oz. ginger beer
1/4oz. Apple Cider Vinegar
In a shaker pint, smash the thyme. Add ice and shake the apple cider vinegar, Seedlip, carrot juice, and egg white. Shake. Strain into cocktail glass and top off with the ginger beer. Garnish with a sprig of Thyme and reap the benefits!
French Polynesia 75
It being summer, the heat and sitting poolside have me dreaming of a tropical beach and a festive cocktail in coconut. The French Polynesia 75 attempts to bring some of that to my back yard by combining a brightly bubbling, hibiscus infused beverage to the table. Sans coconut vessel.
3 oz. lemon juice
1/5 oz. sweetener
4 dashes hibiscus bitters
Shake the Lemon juice and sweetener together over ice. Strain into a flute and stir in the hibiscus bitters. Top with tonic water and garnish with a hibiscus flower.
Let my love for the Paloma be known! I could not imagine 6 weeks of summer without one of these delicious beauties to sip on.
1/2 oz. lime juice
pinch of salt
In a tumbler filled with ice, add lime juice and salt. Stir. Fill to the brim with Grapefruit soda and garnish with lime wedge
Right now the cucumber plant in my folks back yard is going insane, which means they have more cucumbers than they know what to do with and since I live down the street, so do I. Since I don’t want a mess of jarred pickles following me through the winter, I devoted my remaining stock to this refreshing cucumber cooler. Juiced or blended and strained, making cucumber juice will make quick work out of a bunch of cucumbers. Trust me.
4oz. Cucumber juice
2 tbsp. lime juice
¼ tsp sweetener
cucumber round or strip
In a tumbler, combine the cucumber juice, lime juice, and sweetener. Stir to combine. Add ice and top to the brim with ginger ale. Garnish with cucumber round or strip!
This isn’t your childhood lemonade stand. Take the lemonade into grown up territory with this refreshing blend of lemon, herbs, and seltzer for a thirst quencher this summer.
4 oz. lemonade (low sugar preferable)
2 tsp fresh herb of choice
Club soda or seltzer
In a tumbler, muddle the fresh herbs. I used Basil and Thyme, but would also highly recommend using lavender, rosemary, and mint. Fill the glass with ice and add the lemonade. Stir to incorporate. Top off with the club soda. Add a straw (paper or biodegradable of course) and sip in the sunshine!
Since it’s summer time, elevate this grapefruit mocktail by grilling your grapefruit for a bit of smoky character. Don’t hesitate to char the rosemary before letting it mellow in the simple syrup either. Serve these up at a Sunday brunch end enjoy!
3 Tbsp. Grapefruit Juice
Juice of ½ lime
1 2inch piece of Cucumber
2 Tbsp. Rosemary Simple syrup
In a tumbler, combine the grapefruit juice, lime juice, and rosemary simple syrup over ice. Stir well to incorporate then top off with the club soda. Garnish with a strip of Cucumber and fresh rosemary.
Making Rosemary Simple Syrup
Combine equal parts water and sugar into a small pot. Use a 2-3 inch piece of fresh rosemary or 2 tbsp. dried and add to the pot. Bring to boil, stirring till the sugar dissolves, then reduce heat to medium low. Let simmer a few minutes more (3-5). Let cool then remove the rosemary. If you used dried rosemary, use a fine mesh strainer to remove the rosemary. Pour into an airtight container or glass bottle.
I wish I had coconuts on hand to drink this tropical combo out of, and maybe a hammock, and a tropical breeze. Someone just send me to the Caribbean. The sweet blend of pineapple with coconut water is mellowed by the quick bite of lime juice to balance it all out. Excuse me, an island state of mind is calling.
2oz. Pineapple Juice
2oz. Lime Juice
In a tumbler (or better yet a coconut) pour the pineapple juice and lime juice over ice. Fill to the brim with coconut water and enjoy!
My challenge has ended since starting the research for this post, but the big takeaway from the whole experience is that sometimes you don’t want a drink. You want something to signify the end of your day. Something to sit back and sip on that says good job, you made it through and now it’s time to relax. Normally this would be a beer, a glass of wine, or on a bad day whiskey neat. However, by pushing myself to not have alcohol I found that these mocktails gave me the same satisfaction. Cheers!
Celebrating all that we raise, sip, guzzle, clink, drinks and most affectionately cheers with!
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