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5 Kickass Appetizers You Can Make for the Big Game

5 Kickass Appetizers You Can Make for the Big Game

The big game is right around the corner and you have carved out a whole day to prepare and watch the battle. Although spending the game seated in a bar or restaurant downtown can be a great time, sometimes watching the Super Bowl in your abode can be just as good, if not better, AND still be a very sociable experience.  What’s more fun than a little get together with your friends and/or family? Whether you are hosting the party or just a contributing guest, you need a killer appetizer that everyone will swoon over. Check out these 5 kickass appetizers that will be a guaranteed hit.

Mini Pigs in a Blanket

Not only does this classic dish appeal to your inner five-year-old, but it’s also something that everyone is familiar with. Although it’s fun to make new, off the wall dishes, your crazy concoction may not be touched simply because people have no idea what to expect from it. Mini pigs in a blanket, however, are a finger food that everyone knows and loves. It just takes a few ingredients and a few minutes in the oven and you’re ready to go. You can either make the dough yourself, or go buy a can or two of premade crescent roll dough from your local grocery store. Use a package of miniature sausages, wrap each sausage in a slice of dough, and pop them in the oven (generally for the time it takes for the breading to become golden brown). Ta-Da! You’re appetizer is done and ready to roll.

Bacon Wraps

Bacon is all the rage lately, so anything wrapped in bacon is going to draw a crowd. Pretty much anything can be wrapped in in the crispy delight, so let your imagination run wild. If you are serving a bunch of men who can’t get enough meat, try for small chicken cubes wrapped in bacon. Other popular choices include jalapenos stuffed with cream cheese, little smokies, green beans, shrimp, stuffed mushrooms and water chestnuts, just to name a few. If you really want to go all out, you could even make bacon wrapped in bacon. Now we’re talking! No matter what you choose, just take some uncooked bacon, dip it in any spices or sugars you want to add extra flavor, and wrap it around your food of choice. Use a toothpick to secure the bacon to the food, and pop your concoction into the oven until the bacon is nice and crispy. As soon as that bacon smell hits guests’ noses, they will hoard to your dish.

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Best Tips for Healthy Drinking

Best Tips for Healthy Drinking

Most people experience a hangover when they take excessive alcohol during a specific drinking occasion. According to experts, hangovers are symptoms that develop because of withdrawal from a drug addiction that the aforementioned people have for a short time alternatively, chemical contents may cause them.

Practicing prevention before and when you drink is among the best ways of minimizing hangover symptoms such as headaches, body aches, nausea, dehydration, fatigue, and diarrhoea. The following are the best tips on how to achieve this goal:

  1. Drinking for the appropriate reasons: Celebrations and social occasions are very good reasons for you to drink. Stress reduction, the release of anger or making an effort to prove something to people are not healthy motivations for you to consume alcohol and you may increase adverse side effects and the intoxication process when you do so.
  2. Holding that line: You probably know how tolerant you are to alcoholic beverages (you are familiar with the time when the alcohol that you have taken starts to cause psychological and physical changes that are noticeable). You can easily get a hangover the next morning if you cross your line. You should therefore make an effort to hold that line by setting and stating the maximum number of drinks that you will consume before going out you will get appreciation from your body and friends the next morning.
  3. Pacing yourself: According to healthy drinkers and hangover helpers, you should consume one drink for every hour. This rate allows your body to process the alcohol easily without the need to send it special delivery to the head. You should make an effort to consume only three to four drinks during a period of 24 hours and do not consume them more than once or two times a week.
  4. Avoid mixing: You should not alternate the types of alcohol that you consume. You should stick with beer if you start with it and stay with Scotch if you begin with it. Many people experience sick stomachs and get serious headaches when they take different types of drinks. Your body faces serious challenges when it reacts to a variety of alcohol and hence, you should avoid making it more difficult with many other types.
  5. Considering the congeners: Congeners are by-products of the fermentation of alcohol. The hangover is greater if the congener content is higher. Red wine and bourbon have the most congeners while vodka and gin contain the fewest.
  6. Chowing down: You should go out to a bar or party only after eating a substantial meal. Foods that have high protein content such as cheese and milk as well as bread products coat your small intestine and stomach and in effect, help in slowing alcohol absorption into the bloodstream. You can also nibble on finger foods during the night in order to make the intoxication process slower.
  7. Alternating: You should begin partying with food before having a beer and then downing some juice or water and then have another beer (you should pace yourself as you do so). You should not switch off by taking carbonated drinks because they may make intoxication faster and heighten your hangover.
  8. Sipping or drinking: You should drink all your alcoholic beverages slowly because your liver has the ability to handle approximately one alcohol serving per hour. Consuming alcohol rapidly via drinking games, funnels, and shots will definitely cause a hangover.
  9. Drinking water: Alcoholic beverages are diuretics. You should therefore avoid body aches, headaches, and dehydration by drinking a lot of water when and after you take alcohol.

You can enjoy your drinks by following the aforementioned tips. However, if you still experience serious hangover symptoms the next morning, you should use your health insurance card to seek medical attention.

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A Scotsman, Englishman and Irishman were sitting in a pub....

A Scotsman, Englishman and Irishman were sitting in a pub....

As good as this bar is," said the Scotsman, "I still prefer the pubs back home. In Glasgow , there's a wee place called McTavish's. The landlord goes out of his way for the locals. When you buy four drinks, he'll buy the fifth drink."

"Well, Angus," said the Englishman, "At my local in London , the Red Lion, the barman will buy you your third drink after you buy the first two."

"Ahh, dat's nothin'," said Paddy Sheehan, the Irishman. "Back home in me favourite pub, the moment you set foot in the place, they'll buy you a drink, then another, all the drinks you like, actually. Then, when you've had enough drinks, they'll take you upstairs and see dat you gets laid, all on the house!"

The Englishman and Scotsman were suspicious of the claims. "Did this actually happen to you, Paddy?" "No, not me meself, personally, no," admitted the Irishman. "But it did happen to me sister, quite a few times.

[Image courtesy of Campaign Against Political Correctness]

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SantaCon Singapore: Who Cares Who is Naughty or Nice...

SantaCon Singapore: Who Cares Who is Naughty or Nice...

SantaCon is the gathering of people dressed in Santa Claus and festive costumes parading publicly in cities around the world. The focus is on spontaneity and creativity, while having a good time and spreading cheer and goodwill.

On 20th and 21st December 2013, the inaugural SantaCon Singapore aims to bring a new sense of humor and community to the Little Red Dot; It’s a chance to meet people, take oneself a little less seriously and celebrate the festive season!

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The 5 Most Important Things that are Required for Throwing a Great New Year's Party

The 5 Most Important Things that are Required for Throwing a Great New Year's Party

May all acquaintances bring good times…

You know what we mean. New Year’s Eve is one of the biggest nights of the year. Everyone’s looking to report the great time they had that next day. So if you’re hosting a party, you’re a brave soul. You’ve promised a bunch of people you’re taking responsibility for the year’s biggest party night. The task needn’t be intimidating. With a well implemented plan and help from an online party supplier like Shindigs, you’ll provide a night of fun, drink, and song. Here are five tips for throwing one great New Year's party!

Location, Location, Location

Where the party’s being thrown will have a huge impact on the festivities. If it’s outdoors, it can be affected by weather. If it’s a house party, you don’t want to create a nuisance for neighbors. Bars and clubs, restaurants, and amusement parks are great places but may come with restrictions. Determine beforehand how big a party you’re throwing and what you’re expecting out of it in terms of time. No matter the location that you choose, there are going to be certain positive and negative factors. This makes it important that you consider the people that will be coming and the sort of party that you want to throw so that you can invest in the perfect location.


It’s not a party unless you’re holding a drink, is it? There should be alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages at your party so that everyone can be appeased. Of course, you’re going to need a supply of champagne. You can try something a little different like a champagne cocktail. With your drinks, make sure that you have a wide variety of different choices for all of your party guests. What might be a good idea is to hire a bar to come and provide drinks at your area, since this will provide you with a wide assortment of different drinks as well as a professional bar tender that can provide for all of your guests' needs.


In a lot of ways, these parties come down to the tunes. Music is so objective and personal it can be a challenge deciding what to play. You want upbeat, danceable music. You may already know if the crowd leans toward hip hop or techno. Otherwise, try to have a little bit of everything. And while it might be cool to have a DJ, all you need is an iPod or computer to compile playlists that will be able to set the mood, along with a high quality sound system.

Be a Good Host

It’s your party and unfortunately that means spending more time ensuring everyone’s having a good time as opposed to having one yourself. Make sure the food’s replenished, that guests are engaging and no one’s feeling left out. While having a few drinks is fine, you will want to make sure that you stay sober enough to handle any situation that might present itself. Always try to give you guests what they need and you will help to create an evening that people will remember for the rest of their lives.

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Alcohol, The Creatives' Best Friend

Alcohol, The Creatives' Best Friend

Ernest Hemingway, literature's resident drunk, can attest to the theory that the alcohol really fuels the creative juices of writers and artists. Though he didn't write while being crazy drunk, he sure has a few anecdotes about this drunken adventures.

There's no concrete evidence on how alcohol boosts a person's creativity. But there's a theory that since drinking lowers inhibitions, an individual's thought process is freed from any restrictions. Alcohol is a depressant that lowers the judgement and inhibition of a person. So in a sense, science exists behind the claims that having a drink can make a person braver. When it comes to being creative, it works the same way. Words will flow more freely when writers stop thinking about petty concerns such as readers' criticisms. When inhibitions are lowered, writers are less self-conscious, leading to a more natural and honest writing.

However, there's also the argument that alcohol actually hinders productivity. Though it triggers people to be more creative, the other effect of alcohol stops them from delivering. It disinherits a person's capability to actually get out what's on their minds. But it always depends on the amount of alcohol consumed. With just the right amount, creatives can get the help of alcohol to create a master piece.

In a study conducted by psychologists from The University of Illinois, 40 male participants are subjected to a test that challenges their creativity. The men who had drinks performed better on tests and showed sudden insights compared to those who are sober. The research concludes that alcohol relaxes the brain and causes it to see things in a bigger picture. And through this effect, the brain manages to analyse and connects the dots easily. Alcohol can make motor skills and focused action a lot more difficult, but it has a positive effect on the thinking process.

The key here is in the moderation. There's no point in denying the debilitating short-term and long-term effects of alcohol. When taken in staggering amount over the course of years, it can affect the liver and the heart. Alcohol poisoning is even possible. Renowned artists like Kurt Cobain and Amy Winehouse, both creatives, are just two of the thousands of people who reached their demise due to alcohol. But with the right amount of alcohol in your system, you can free yourself from the limits that your sober self struggles with.

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Collecting Antique Liquor Bottles

Collecting Antique Liquor Bottles

Liquor bottle collecting is emerging as one of the top hobbies in the U.S. today. There are a growing number of bottle collecting clubs in every major city. So, why the big draw? It may be an attempt to rediscover our roots or an interest in the days when life seemed simpler and happier. But also, when alcohol and other antique bottles were made by hand, no two were identical. Machines were utilized prior to the 1920’s, but many collectors are not as interested in machine-made bottles. Liquor bottles made by machine were offered for sale after Prohibition. If your liquor bottle bottle is hand made it is most likely made before Prohibition. John Dewar for example introduced the first bottled Scotch, Dewars White Label.

Types of Liquor Bottle Collectors

We are all creatures of habit and it is not uncommon for collectors of liquor bottles to focus on a specific type of bottle for their collections! Many tend to focus on specific shapes or types of alcohol or by brand. Rum, Vodka, Whisley and other various types of liquors came in different shapes and sizes of bottles. 

According to the historians, the first glass containers were made in the 17th Century. A craftsman would use a long metal blowpipe and scoop molten glass onto its tip. He would blow into the pipe until the bubble grew in size and formed a general shape. Free-blown bottles are rare and can be identified by the absence of seams. Years later, glassblowers began to use molds so the shape was consistent. However, these bottles had seams or mold marks up to the lip of the bottle—so they are easy to identify.

In the late 1800s, manufacturers attempted to correct the problem of clear glass having a greenish tint—so they added manganese to their glass mixture in order to produce truly clear glass. These bottles can be distinguished because their colors change when exposed to sunlight for long periods of time. UV rays have caused them to color in shades ranging from lilac to amethyst. If you find a bottle with a screw top, it is newer than those that were stopped with corks. Inside screw tops were used before outside screw tops; and a bottle marked to show its capacity was produced later than one without this label.

Where are Old & Antique Bottles Hiding Today?

Serious bottle collectors do their research so they can easily evaluate their finds. There are distinctions in bottles which make them extremely valuable—a single bottle can be worth thousands of dollars (though rare). Valuable bottles usually have distinct characteristics like their colors (i.e. cobalt and cornflower blue), embossed designs, and the shape/markings on the base or the neck of the bottle. These features help determine their origin and time frame. Many bottle collectors are interested in the very early American bottles dating from the 1700’s into the early 1900’s.

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Infographic: Get To Grips With Wine And Food Matching

Infographic: Get To Grips With Wine And Food Matching
Wine Food pairing

How important is it that wine and food should match? Ultimately, the rules aren't set in stone, but the idea of pairing wines with foods is to help certain flavours complement each other and bring the best out in each other.

There is nothing wrong with trying different combinations, but if you suddenly start to find that a certain wine isn't doing it for you anymore, then it could just be that you've been pairing it with the wrong food. Drink the wine without any food as a test.

How you cook your food can also influence your choice of wine. The nature of food changes when it's roasted, baked, poached, steamed, cooked in sauce or marinated, etc, so bear this in mind when choosing wines.

Learn how to recognise the flavours in the food and wine and taste them as you prepare your meal. Don't forget to use your sense of smell, as well. Look out for fruit, berry or wood flavours. Is the wine heavy or light, sweet or acidic?

Experiment, be open-minded, and don't be afraid to change your mind or adapt meal or wine choices along the way!

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Myths and Misconceptions about Beer

Myths and Misconceptions about Beer

About beer as many other things which are around us we can hear many myths and stereotypes. Let’s try to find out what is true and what is not.

They add alcohol to beer

We can say that it is the most popular myth. Of course, there is nothing strange in it if you feel alcohol odor in tumbler. In reality alcohol can be added to beer but very-very much seldom. Such things are exceptions to the rules, because it is unprofitable to use alcohol in beer producing. Besides, barm is able to produce up to 13%  of the alcohol naturally, so brewers have no need to add the thing which will be in beer for free.

You can grow fat from beer

There is some truth in such statement. But the real reason of fatness is not the beer, but the meal which we eat after it. Beer is a great stimulator of the appetite, that’s why after drinking it you begin to eat much. The excessive caloric food is the main reason of fatness.

And then very much depends on your genetics. Look at German, there not so many fat people among them, but they drink very much beer indeed.

Beer is made from powder

Never a one brewery will do such things. Process of beer production is pretty standard and there are certain stages, which need certain equipment. This myth appeared because of promotion by some firms a technology of making beer at home. They suggest to dilute beer concentrate, then to ferment it in plastic reservoir and to drink. But this liquid is beer neither by taste, nor by odor. That’s why you will never mix up such “product” if you buy it in the shop. Of course there are such things in shops already.

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Can Different Types of Alcohol Affect My Body Differently?

Can Different Types of Alcohol Affect My Body Differently?

Any experienced drinker knows that no two nights of drinking lead to an identical morning after. Some mornings it may feel like you simply didn’t log enough sleep, while others like a truck ran over your head… twice. But do you know why? Modern science claims that “alcohol is alcohol,” yet many who drink swear different alcoholic beverages cause significantly different reactions in their mental and physical state. The truth, as always, is not black and white.  While the way alcohol is metabolized in the body is consistent no matter what you are drinking, different people drinking the same thing may react differently and the same people drinking different things may also react differently. So what gives?  The way you feel after drinking depends on a variety of factors, including who you are, what you drink and how you drink it.

First, it is important to note that the body does technically metabolize all alcohol the same way. To put it simply, once a drink enters the stomach it will be carried by blood vessels to the blood stream. There, about 20% of the alcohol is absorbed while the remaining 80% is absorbed through the small intestine. Once there, the alcohol will enter the blood stream through the small intestine walls and then be metabolized by the liver. On average, the liver can process one ounce of liquor per hour. When you consume alcohol at a faster rate, your system becomes saturated and the additional alcohol will accumulate in your blood stream until it can become metabolized. This is where feeling drunk begins.

Your body metabolizes all alcohol this way, from a pint of beer to a glass of wine to a shot of vodka. So what leads to different outcomes? First of all, women metabolize alcohol at a different rate than men. This has been attributed to women having less body water, so the percentage of alcohol entering their blood stream is a higher, leading them to become drunk more quickly. Additionally, things like body weight, medications and how much food you’ve eaten that day can all affect how quickly you become intoxicated by affecting the alcohol absorption in the stomach.  This is why smaller women tend may be considered “lightweights” and why you should always eat dinner before drinking.

It may not be a surprise to you that a cheerleader becomes drunk more quickly than a husky football player, but the content of a drink and your mindset during drinking can affect your degree of intoxication as well. If you’re drinking a mixed drink, it likely includes soda or fruit juice. Soda, or any other carbonated beverage, speeds up the absorption of alcohol into the bloodstream and will leave you feeling drunker faster. Not only that, the caffeine present in soda will keep you alert, meaning you may not realize how significantly the alcohol is affecting you until you are already too drunk. Likewise, using a fruit juice as a mixer masks the taste of alcohol due to the acidity and sugar. Not being able to taste the alcohol in a drink will lead to drinking faster which leads to – you guessed it – becoming drunk more quickly than if you were drinking, say, a vodka on the rocks where you can taste how strong it is.

Perhaps you have heard someone claim “tequila makes me crazy” or “whiskey makes me mean.” When considering that all alcohol is metabolized the same way, it might lead you to believe that these differences aren’t possible. If you took two people of identical gender, height and weight and gave one an ounce of whiskey and one an ounce of tequila and asked them to drink at the same rate, they would likely have identical reactions. However, in reality this is not how people drink.

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6 Things You Never Knew Could Get You Arrested During Your Weekend Activities

6 Things You Never Knew Could Get You Arrested During Your Weekend Activities

Weekends traditionally are a time for unbuttoning collars and relaxing, but what many people think of as harmless fun actually can be completely against the law. Because police officers operate with a broad range of leeway for enforcement against misdemeanors and other minor offenses, this has led to public confusion about when they can get off scot-free - and when they may need to get in contact with a lawyer. Feel free to continue reading if you're interested in a few obscure ways to land yourself a fee, or even a jail cell here in the US.

1. Drive-By Hunting

Most states, including such diverse ones as California and Tennessee, have laws against shooting animals while the shooter is in a moving vehicle. If you want to go hunting, step out of the car! There is one seemingly odd exception to this persistent rule: the whale, as a concession to the fishing industry.

2. Not-So-Exotic Pets

United States pet laws are a hodgepodge of contradictions that change whenever you go over a state line. While the inconsistencies in pet laws are too numerous to count, one common theme is that many seemingly harmless animals are deemed unfit to keep as pets by unlicensed owners. For example, if you live in California, a pet chipmunk is off the table. Limitations on quantity also can be found, such as Arkansas restricting rabbit owners to a maximum of half a dozen rabbits.

3. Light Shows Staged Too Late

Most people won't be shocked to learn that there are various restrictions placed on using fireworks, which, for all their festivity, still qualify as explosives. However, you may not be aware that different regions have different restrictions on WHEN to use them, as well as HOW. For example, the town of Devil's Lake, North Dakota doesn't abide by the use of fireworks past eleven PM, putting a damper on late night celebrations. In Provo, Utah, residents are only able to use fireworks for a few weeks during the year, with all other times being illegal.

4. Playing Out Famous Gambling Scenes

The gag of the penniless schmuck who's forced to give away his own clothes to get away from the poker table is a classic trope of cinema and television. Unfortunately, the real world doesn't always work out quite so hilariously. If you try this in New Hampshire, you're breaking the law. And yes, that even includes if you do it 'officially' by heading to the nearest pawnbroker's shop.

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Different ways wine can be a part of a healthy diet

Different ways wine can be a part of a healthy diet

Wine does a lot of miracles: it is a good solution to insomnia, something to share with buddies and an ideal complement to a delicious meal. But something you don't commonly hear is that wine can even be an element of a good diet.

While most of us who are going on a diet believe that we have to cut wine from our diet entirely, there are some good reasons why you need to reconsider that approach. Cutting down your consumption of alcohol might unquestionably be in order, but there are a lot of medical evidences that show that average alcohol could be healthy. Possibly even beyond the confirmed medical benefits of wine intake, there are various issues that argue in support of including wine into a low calorie eating habit!

Studies about health benefits of moderate drinking

Research released in the Archives of Internal Medicine discovered that, women of average weight who take in alcohol in moderate amount did not gain much weight compared to non-drinking women of the same weight.

Another research by the Journal of Biological Chemistry showed that a chemical substance present in red wine known as piceatonnal could prevent the development of fat cells. The study is still in the early stages but those that have taken part in experienced an eighty percent reduction in the formation of fat cells after they took piceatonnal.

Needless to say, there are plenty of elements which may have affected these results. But there could be some other factors that contribute to the benefits of moderately drinking wine.

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Top 4 Wine-tasting Tips For Beginners

Top 4 Wine-tasting Tips For Beginners

Many people are curious about wine-tasting, but some let fear of inexperience prevent them from actually trying it. There’s really nothing to worry about, though. Here are four top tips to make your first time less frightening!

1. How to smell

Most people know that you’re supposed to smell the wine before drinking it, but very few actually know what they’re smelling for. The best way to understand this is to ask a member of staff. Their job is to help you get the most out of your wine-tasting experience, so don’t be afraid!

The best way to smell a wine is to rotate the glass several times before lowering your nose to it. There’s no wrong answer when it comes to smell: don’t be afraid to say what you think!

To get the most out of a wine’s scent, refrain from wearing strong perfumes or smoking before or during the event. Wine has a delicate smell, so it doesn’t take much to overpower it.

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Fascinating Wine Gift Ideas for Wine Lovers

Fascinating Wine Gift Ideas for Wine Lovers

Wine makes a perfect drink for any occasion, be it red, white or vintage it surely gives your taste buds the sweetness of grapes. Whether you are throwing a party or attending one, wine definitely adds life to the party. Wines are appreciated by all and undoubtedly make it a splendid gift. Wine is not an easy bid for everyone is so surprise wine lovers with vintage wine or wine gift ideas and make their day a memorable one. Not just wine, but wine related articles and wine accessories are also a unique item to gift your dear ones. Wines are generally served as a token of gratitude, souvenir, and the best way to wish the newlyweds with happiness and prosperity for their new life.

Say Cheers!

It is important to present wine gift ideas in unique style to flatter and mesmerize the wine lovers. So here are a few suggestions to gift them in the right way:

Dress Shirt Wine Bottle Bag

This unique presentation leaves wine lover surprised. Wrap up your wine bottle in a shirt bag. The ribbon at the neck complements this look, just as bow around the collar.

Wine Racks

Are the best ways to display your collection of wine bottles. If your friend is a wine lover then gift him with a unique wine rack to let him flaunt his collection of wines to his guest. Choose from a wooden or metallic look to flatter them in the best way.

Digital Wine Thermometer

To enjoy your wine at its best taste, it is important to drink them at the right temperature. Different wines taste best at different temperatures. So gift wine entertainers, which is a unique thermometer, which embraces the wine bottle, and measures its temperature to serve you right.

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Drinking Without Getting Drunk

Drinking Without Getting Drunk

Many people drink and enjoy the fact that it gets them drunk.  However some people would like to enjoy the act of drinking, but avoid the drunken feeling that comes with it.  While it is impossible to drink a large amount and not get drunk, it is possible to drink without getting drunk if done the correct way.

Practice Self Control

One of the most important things when drinking is learning how to practice self-control.  The reason people turn into alcoholics is because they cannot effectively set their limits.  Learn how much it takes for you to get drunk and then set your limit to below that.  A rudimentary way to determine how much it will take you to get drunk is to use a Blood Alcohol Level Chart which uses your weight to tell you the level of alcohol that would be in your system after a certain number of drinks.

It also helps to have people around you that will not pressure you into drinking.    If you have friends who will peer pressure you into drinking more, you will become drunk much faster.  Drink with friends who will respect your limits and your attempts at self-control

Eat Before and While Your Drink

Food is a good way to help avoid getting drunk.  When there is food in your stomach, it will help absorb any alcohol that you consume which means less will be absorbed directly into your blood stream.  Make sure to have a full meal before you think about drinking.  Having food in your stomach also means that if you do happen to get drunk and drink past your limit, you will be less likely to get sick.

If you are going out to a restaurant or bar that serves food make sure to get something to eat while you drink.  This will dilute the alcohols effects and leave you more sober.  If you are drunk already, eating will help make you less drunk and possibly every sober after a few hours of not drinking.

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Drinking Games and Hangover Cures from Around the Globe

Drinking Games and Hangover Cures from Around the Globe
Efficient German medicine
Your drunkenness is decided on the flip of a coin.

I couldn't find a picture of people playing Bear Paw - presumably there are never any survivors

With the 180th Oktoberfest set to kick off on September 21st thousands of revellers from across the world will descend on Munich to celebrate German culture (drinking). If you’re looking to expand your cultural horizons through inebriation we’ve compiled a list of country-specific drinking games for you to try. What’s more, for that added authenticity we’ve included international hangover cures to deal with the after-effects. You’ll look really cosmopolitan. Honest.

Germany – Hammerschlagen & Rollmops

Just so you don’t embarrass yourself with your lack of German drinking game knowledge we’ll start with a classic and Oktoberfest-related drinking game: hammerschlagen.

Reportedly started at the very first Oktoberfest in 1810, hammerschlagen involves a group standing around a tree stump and taking turns to hammer their nail into the wood. The first person to achieve this (the nail must be flushed or under the surface of the wood) is rewarded with a shot; the last must buy the next round.

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Four Tips for Making Wine At Home

Four Tips for Making Wine At Home

Enjoy Quality Wine at Lesser Cost, Make your Favorite Wine at Home

One of the largest growing hobbies involves taking the initiative, and making your most treasured wish list items at home. People all over are now learning how to make most items at home, with their own two hands, like jewelry, clothing and wine. Making wine at home just might be the most ambitious of them all, mostly because it involves not only skills but a great deal of patience, as well. The following four tips will help you keep what might seem to be confusing instructions as simple as possible.

Sources and Supplies

It is possible to make decent wine from a variety of fruits, not just grapes. You can also use apples, peaches, plums, pears, berries and apricots, just to name a few. At its simplest, you can use nearly any kind of fruit that can produce juice. You will also need something to press the fruit with, to make that juice. You will also need glass jugs to store the juice in during fermentation, siphoning tubes, yeast and sugar. You may need to dilute the juice, in order to achieve the proper volume to fill those jugs.

Adding Sugar

Some juices may not even need for sugar to be added before the fermentation stage of making wine at home. Even though a recipe may call for it, be sure to sample the wine before adding sugar, just in case it might be sweet enough without it. You do not want a cloying aftertaste, as this can effect the way that the finished wine will taste later on. On average, a gallon of wine will need one to two pounds of sugar, half that if you want a dry wine. Always warm the juice before adding sugar, so that it dissolves completely. And, remember, the more sugar you add, the higher the alcohol content the wine will have.

Adding Yeast

The most important ingredient to this whole process is yeast, without which fermentation cannot take place. Put one packet of the yeast into a cup of warm water, and stir, making sure that the yeast dissolves completely. Let it sit for a few minutes, so that the yeast has a chance to activate. Pull out the jug of fruit juice, and add the yeast/water mixture to it. Cap the jug with an airtight lid, and store it in a reasonably warm place.

About The Fermentation Process

Make sure to store any bottles that you are fermenting wine in inside an area that will stay at a temperature of at least 70 degrees, and no more than 80. This is the part where you will have to exercise the most patience. In order to get the best results out of this stage, you will have to let it sit and ferment for at least six months. Once a month, look to see how much dead yeast cells have collected at the bottom of the jug. You will have to siphon the wine out and put it in a clean jug before putting it back on the shelf. Once you hit the point where there is less dead cells on the bottom, it is nearly ready to bottle.

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Guide to UK wine

Guide to UK wine
Wine Lover's Guide to the UK

Browsing the wine list in a Parisian restaurant, as expected, you’ll find a list of fine French wines from all over France. Browse the wine list in a London restaurant and you’ll find a list of fine French wines from all over France. Although the UK has its own vibrant and high quality wine industry, finding a bottle of local wine in an English restaurant or shop is still a tough task.

There are over 419 vineyards in the UK producing around 4 million bottles a year, half of which is sparkling. This is a pretty small output in global terms, not enough to make the UK a viable exporter, but enough that it could become an important part of a UK wine market that is the sixth biggest in the world.

The need to help spread the word on UK wine in an informative but eye-catching way lead to the creation of the infographic you see below. It’s a map that includes all the award winning vineyards across the country as well as information and links to festivals; shops that stock English and Welsh wine and a little bit of history about wine production in Great Britain.

Some of the more notable vineyards are Chapel Down who had the privilege of having their wine served at last year’s Royal Wedding; Furleigh estate in Dorset, winner of two golds and a silver medal at the 2013 International Wine Challenge and Ancre Hill Estates whose 2008 vintage was awarded best sparkling wine in the world in 2012.

Hopefully, The Wine Lover’s Guide to the UK stirs the imagination of wine drinkers across the country who may have overlooked the output of their local vineyards. But at the same time acts as an introduction for any visitors to Britain of the exciting and vibrant world of UK wine.

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After Work Drinks - Greenwich Village

After Work Drinks - Greenwich Village

At the end of a long, hard day at the office, who doesn’t want to sit back and relax with a delicious alcoholic beverage before dinner. Whether you’re with business colleagues, or friends from across town, we’ve found some prime spots in Greenwich Village to grab that essential after-work drink- before you head home. Here are five of our favorites.

Corkbuzz Wine Studio

Who’s the wine expert in your working life? We ask, because every office has one and it can make choosing an end-of-day venue for drinks a little tricky sometimes. Well, when only the best will do, try taking your vino enthusiast to Corkbuzz where he or she can engage with owner Laura, who also happens to be an extremely helpful master sommelier. The rest of you can indulge in some unusual but mouthwatering snacks (bone marrow and pigs ears included) or a chic cocktail (we’re particularly fond of the Van Gogh) in a distinctly un-pretentious environment.

Vol de Nuit

If wine isn’t really your thing and you’d rather grab a pint of craft ale for your post-work refresher, Vol de Nuit is a fantastic Belgian beer bar that has a patio for those of you who would prefer to drink outdoors before the sun goes down. Champagne and wine are available on the menu too, but it’s really all about the brews here—well, the brews and the exquisite fries, which come with a wide selection of condiment choices (the aioli garlic sauce is divine.)


The first Amélie wine bar opened in San Francisco’s chic Russian Hill neighborhood and was such a success with the after-work and young professional crowd, that the owners started one in Greenwich Village too. Cozy, classy and warm like the original, although it’s less than two years old, NYC’s Amélie already feels like an old friend—possibly due to the more than one hundred wines to choose from, and the plethora of artisanal cheeses and meats on offer. Between 5 and 7 p.m. you can get three glasses of wine for $10, as part of the “Flight” deal. We are definitely on board!

Formerly Crow’s

For an after-work crowd looking for something a little bit spicier than a straight-forward wine bar, there’s Formerly Crow’s—a long, dark tunnel of a place with bare brick walls, old décor and tattooed ladies serving up the drinks. It’s definitely the kind of place that will help you shake off a day at the office in five minutes flat—especially if you’re indulging in their truly exotic cocktails, including the Lundquistador (which contains jalapeno-infused tequila) and the cinnamon-infused Sazarac.

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8 Truths and Myths About The Health Effects of Alcohol

8 Truths and Myths About The Health Effects of Alcohol

To imbibe or not to imbibe? That is the long-running debate.

Many studies have delved into the negative effects of drinking too much alcohol, such as impaired decision-making, a slower reaction time, and liver damage over time. However, there’s another side to that coin, and some studies have also looked at the positive aspects of moderate drinking, with the heart health benefits of red wine being one of the most popular topics.

There are several negative and positive effects of alcohol that have not gotten as much attention from the media, though, and I’d like to look at a few of them here. First, the negatives:

4 Little Known Negative Effects of Alcohol

Increased blood pressure. Heavy drinking raises your blood pressure, which in turn increases your risk of heart disease. Fortunately, your blood pressure will return to normal levels 1-2 months after you stop drinking unless there’s already excessive damage to your heart.

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