Here in Atlanta, there’s a ton of events going on this Labor Day weekend, but the event I looked forward to the most was House In The Park. The annual event took place yesterday (August 31) in Grant Park and was as dope as expected. Now any time there’s a festive happening at one of Atlanta’s numerous parks I try to whip up something Lushworthy to sip on with friends. It’s usually something simple, one or two ingredients, because there’s no time for craft cocktails when it’s 90-plus degrees out. So, at the suggestion of a friend, I ended up making a pitcher of Pinnacle Amaretto and lemonade. I was obviously aiming for something Amaretto Sour-esque. Not sure if that was accomplished, but it was pretty tasty. It’s also super easy to make, with the Pinnacle Amaretto and lemonade being the only ingredients unless you want to add a few lemon wheels. Check out the recipe below. Cheers!
1 Part Pinnacle Amaretto Vodka
3 Parts Lemonade
Lemon Wheels (For Garnish)
Combine Pinnacle Amaretto Vodka and lemonade in a pitcher. Stir and add lemon wheels.
I feel like it was just yesterday when the only dishes I enjoyed with a side of bacon were pancakes or scrambled eggs with extra cheese. Now bacon is everywhere. It’s in candy. It’s in brownies. And please believe it’s definitely in cocktails as well. I’m a big supporter of bacon, so I’m not complaining. In fact, I fully plan on celebrating International Bacon Day with a bacon-inspired cocktail in hand. I’m still weighing my options, but this Crisp Apple & Bacon Cocktail, which is made using bacon infused vodka and Angry Orchard Crisp Apple, could be the move.
What do you bacon fanatics think? Is the Crisp Apple & Bacon Cocktail a good celebratory drink for International Bacon Day?
Crisp Apple & Bacon Cocktail (Created by Hayley Jensen)
1 oz. bacon infused vodka
Splash maple syrup
Dash of bitters
4 oz. Angry Orchard Crisp Apple
Stir over ice, strain into a glass (martini suggested), garnish with a brandied cherry and small strip of bacon.
I can’t believe I’m writing this blog post right now. Is summer over already? I mean, I know we’ve got a gazillion more weeks of sweltering heat left here in Atlanta, but I’m surprised that we’ve almost knocked out yet another season this year. Thankfully though, this Labor Day weekend is sure to be a cocktail-filled one, so I can leave my bewilderment at the door at least for a few days.
No need to fret over what sips you should serve this holiday weekend because I’ve compiled a list of drink recipes from Skinnygirl, Belvedere Vodka, 2 Gingers Irish Whiskey, and a handful of other boozy brands, that are sure to please even the most finicky of cocktail lovers..Cheers to a safe and enjoyable holiday weekend!
South Of The Border (Created By Mixologist Lynnette Marrero)(Pictured Above)
1 ounce Zacapa Rum 23
1/3 ounce Myers Dark Rum
1/3 ounce Orange Curaçao
2/3 ounce Perfect Puree Passion Fruit
1/3 ounce Fresh Lime Juice
1/3 ounce Orgeat Syrup
2 dashes Aromatic Bitters
Mint Sprig & Orange Slice for Garnish
Combine Zacapa Rum 23, Myers Dark Rum, orange curaçao, perfect puree passion fruit, fresh lime juice, orgeat syrup and aromatic bitters into a cocktail shaker with ice and shake vigorously. Strain contents into a rocks glass over crushed ice. Garnish with mint sprig and orange slice.
I’m not gonna lie, the idea of cooking with booze scares me a little bit. You can’t tell me that the explosion of fire that results from flambeing a dish isn’t a little on the intimidating side. Thankfully though, not every booze-infused dish comes with the risk of singeing off one’s eyebrows. The folks at Crown Royal and Captain Morgan have come up with a handful of dishes that are made using either whiskey or rum and are perfect for this weekend’s Labor Day festivities.
Check out their recipes for BBQ Chicken Bacon Bites made with a rum-infused spicy sweet BBQ sauce and Brats With [Crown Royal] Maple-ized Onions.
Nonstick cooking spray
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
8 oz. (half pound) bacon, cut into thirds
1/2 cup Spicy Sweet BBQ Sauce (recipe below)
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil. Spray lightly with cooking spray. Wrap each chicken piece with a small strip of bacon. Secure with a toothpick and place on the baking sheet. Brush with BBQ sauce. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove pan from oven, brush bites with more BBQ sauce, and return to oven. Bake for 15 more minutes. Serve warm.
I’ll give it to you, summer. You’re cute. With your beach-worthy weather, tropical drinks, fancy sunblocks, and other summery niceties. But I’m more of a fall gal, myself (hello boots and leggings!). With that being said, I’m definitely not in the majority. In fact, I’m sure most of the country (especially those in the North) have already found themselves dreading counting down the remaining weeks of summer. If you’ve already found yourself on the verge of a “fall freakout” then it may be time to get away to a place where the heat’s present nearly year round and the cocktails are oh so Lushworthy. I’m talking about South Beach, Miami, ladies and gents.
I had the opportunity to visit Miami earlier this year and during my stay I spent one night at The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach. Although The Ritz-Carlton is smack dab in the middle of all the action on South Beach, it boasts an inviting solitude. The lobby area is dimly-lit, but still warm. A nice change from the sensory overload one can endure on Collins Ave, which the hotel rests on the corner of. And the pool area, my personal favorite, is a welcomed surprise in a city where teeny, tiny rooftop pools seem to be all the rave. The pool itself is pretty large. Large enough to where if you happen to visit at the right time you may even be able to get your Michael Phelps on without swimming directly into a middle-aged, European tourist.
Oh, and did I mention the plethora of beachy cocktails available at The Ritz-Carlton South Beach? We’re talking sipping sangria while beachside and later moving to frothy, frozen drinks by the pool once you start getting sand in highly unwelcomed places. While on the beach we ordered the watermelon sangria, which was very refreshing. There were about four servings in the pitcher and while the sangria was tasty I felt like I had to drink it up pretty quickly to keep from sipping on a super-diluted sangria due to all the ice placed in the pitcher.
Although I’m very much a cocktail enthusiast, we switched things up a bit and took it to the brewery for the latest #MeetMeAtTheBar meetup, which took place over the weekend at the Wild Heaven Craft Beers brewery in Avondale Estates, Georgia.
A great time was definitely had as those in attendance sampled a variety of craft beers and were also treated to a pulled pork sandwich buffet complete with homemade coleslaw. I also raffled off a few Lushworthy prizes including two cocktail sets (full size bottle of Smirnoff Light with cocktail shaker), Stella & Dot jewelry, and beer bottle koozies. Thanks so much to everyone who came out!
Check out a few pics from #MeetMeAtTheBar below and stay tuned for an announcement about the next #MeetMeAtTheBar.
Now that preseason is in full swing it’s time to #RiseUp yet again for the home team. Yes! Go Falcons! I had the opportunity to attend the Atlanta Falcons’ first preseason game using tickets I snagged on ScoreBig.com. Here’s a quick and simple run down of ScoreBig, it’s kinda like Priceline, but for event tickets. You have the opportunity to “bid on tickets and save up to 60% below box office price.” When you bid on tickets there’s even a cool, little bar that shows you how likely you are to win a bid based on the price you suggested. Oh, and if your bid is denied you have to wait 24 hours to place another bid.
My first bid for tickets in the Five Star seating area at the Georgia Dome was denied, so I had to try again the next day. On my second attempt I ended up scoring two tickets in Section 138, Row 13 at the Dome for $47 each. I had to wait a little while for my e-tickets to be delivered and I have to admit that the wait made me a little paranoid since I’ve never used ScoreBig before. They were finally emailed to me and we of course had no problem getting into the Falcons/Dolphins game.
During the game, I snagged myself a cup of SweetWater 420 and watched the Falcons whoop the Dolphins. Okay, “whoop” is probably a bit of an exaggeration, but I’m trying to warm-up my smack talk game for the season. Back to the SweetWater though…Getting your hands on any craft beer at the Georgia Dome is a bit of a feat. We literally had to walk around half the Dome to find a vendor selling the good stuff. And if we arrived at that particular vendor five minutes later we would have arrived after the booze cut-off time, something I was completely unaware of since I haven’t been to a football game in eons.
I was also hoping to drink my SweetWater 420 straight from the can. To be honest, I just wanted a super Lushworthy, Instagram pic with my can of SweetWater 420 and the field in the background. Great idea, right? Didn’t happen though because apparently SweetWater 420 cans can be used as projectiles by angry fans.
If you plan on keeping it responsibly Lushworthy at any game this season you may want to check out this Information Guide. And if you’re in the market for tickets to any Falcons games be sure to check out ScoreBig.
* A $100 ScoreBig credit was provided, but the thoughts in this post are fully my own.
A few days ago, I had the opportunity to attend an “Eat. Tweet. Repeat” media event held to promote Downtown Atlanta Restaurant Week, which began yesterday (August 9). Downtown Atlanta is definitely trying to put itself back on the map, so it was pretty cool checking out the various food and drink options available downtown. Among the three restaurants we had the opportunity to visit were McCormick And Schmick’s, Thrive, and Ted’s Montana Grill. We tried a variety of bites from each of the three restaurants, but I was of course most interested in the cocktails.
The award for Most Lushworthy definitely goes to the margarita at Ted’s Montana Grill. All of their mixers are made in the restaurant, and that added step definitely made for a great cocktail. The Lemon Drop martini from McCormick And Schmick’s was another winner. Be warned, it does come with a sugared-rim. Despite the dreaded, sugared-rim it was a tasty and welcomed sip on a day when a refreshing cocktail was a must. Also worth noting is the crab cake from Ted’s Montana Grill. It’s loaded with crab and comes with a side of guacamole for all you guac addicts out there.
All three of the restaurants we visited during “Eat. Tweet. Repeat” are of course among the numerous restaurants taking part in Downtown Atlanta Restaurant Week, which is sponsored by Celebrity Cruises. As part of Downtown Atlanta Restaurant Week you can indulge in gourmet prix-fixe menus that range in price from $15 to $35 up until August 17. To view a list of participating restaurants and their menus, visit AtlantaDowntown.com.
For all our Lushworthy readers in Atlanta, I’m pleased to announce that the next #MeetMeAtTheBar meetup will take place on Saturday, August 16 from 2 to 5 P.M. at the Wild Heaven Craft Beers brewery in Decatur, Georgia. I was initially planning on taking the Happy Hour route with #MeetMeAtTheBar, but I’ve visited a few Atlanta-based breweries over the past few weeks, and I love ‘em!
A visit to the Wild Heaven Craft Beers brewery usually costs $12, but they’re offering $2 off for #MeetMeAtTheBar attendees on August 16. So, for only 10 bucks you get a souvenir glass and six complimentary tastings. Oh, also included in that $10 is a boozily amazing way to spend your Saturday afternoon. There may even be some prizes in the mix for those in attendance. (Prizes from the last #MeetMeAtTheBar included Kiehls gift sets and Lolita martini glasses…Just saying)
Be sure to send a RSVP to email@example.com and I look forward to seeing you all next weekend!
Smirnoff is continuing to add to their line of low-calorie vodkas thanks to the release of two new, seasonal flavors, Sorbet Light Summer Strawberry and Sorbet Light White Peach. Similar to other Sorbet Light flavors, which include Raspberry Pomegranate and Pineapple Coconut, the two newest additions are low on the calories with only 78 calories per 1.5 oz. serving and full on flavor. Sorbet Light Summer Strawberry boasts a flavor reminiscent of ripe strawberries while Sorbet Light White Peach keeps it heavily peachy with the addition of flavors similar to that of “juicy sweet peaches.”
Pinnacle Vodka Launches Pinnacle Amaretto
Famous for their variety of whipped and fruity flavors, Pinnacle Vodka is switching things up a bit with their newest addition, Pinnacle Amaretto. Pinnacle Amaretto is described as a vodka that flaunts “a full-bodied almond flavor with undertones of cherry and a smooth, lingering cocoa finish” and will likely be a welcomed addition to all those fall cocktails.
“Pinnacle Vodka is known for pioneering high quality premium vodka with out-of-this-world flavors,” said Jason Dolenga, Senior Brand Director of Vodka at Beam Suntory, in a statement. “We’re committed to continually providing new, fun flavors that we know our Pinnacle fans will enjoy. Amaretto is no exception.”
Look out for both Pinnacle Amaretto and Smirnoff’s newest Sorbet Light flavors at a liquor store near you this season.