Welcome to Imbibe Magazine's between-issues look at liquid culture with drink recipes, news and more. From coffee to cocktails, Imbibe celebrates your world in a glass.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Drink(s) of the Week: Super Bowl Beers

Gearing up for Sunday’s big game? Whatever the outcome, we’ve got two beers perfect for the occasion. Denver’s beer scene is one of the best in the country, and Great Divide is one of the city’s best breweries. Their Denver Pale Ale is light and easy-drinking (only 5.5% ABV) with a sturdy hop aroma and flavors bookending some mid-palate malts. Of course, Seattle is no slouch when it comes to beer either, and in the Seahawks’ hometown, Elysian Brewing has long been leading the charge. The brewery’s Immortal IPA combines three types of hops with four types of malts for a perfectly refreshing game-day beer.  

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Imbibe-Approved Super Bowl Eats

Gearing up for Sunday’s big game? We’re always happy to have an excuse to gather with friends for a day-long session of eating and drinking, and with the keg already ordered and the Bloody Mary bar mapped out, we’re ready to focus on the food. What’s on our Super Bowl menu? From beer-spiked pretzels to porter-braised pork, here’s what we’ll be making.

Photo: Alex Farnum
Half a pint of German pilsner lends some sudsy goodness to this mustard-cheese fondue. 

Photo: Buttermeupbrooklyn.com
Beer and pretzels go hand in hand, and this recipe infuses some IPA hoppiness right into the batter. 

Photo: Loadedkitchen.com
Whip up a big pot of this Guinness-spiked chili before the big game and relax in front of the tube all day long. 

Photo: Thebeeroness.com
Porter, meet pork—pork, porter. The dark beer meets with brown sugar and spice in this tender, slow-cooked pork from blogger and author, The Beeroness

Photo: Ree Drummond
Boost your fourth-quarter bites with these coffee icing–capped brownies. 

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Quick Sips: Tasty Bits from Around the Web

An unofficial cocktail map of the United States. Buzzfeed

France’s Bordeaux region is seeing a new eastern influence. New York Times

Forget the Heineken factory—where to drink craft beer in Amsterdam. Conde Nast Traveler

Why coffee is Paris is so bad. Slate 

Syrah with Thin Mints? How to pair wine with Girl Scout cookies. WTOP

Friday, January 24, 2014

Drink of the Week: Handsome Coffee Roasters Kakuyuni Kenya

Originating in the highlands of Kenya before making its way to our 2014 Coffee Bar of the Year—Handsome Coffee Roasters in Los Angeles—today’s Drink of the Week is processed at the Kakuyuni factory in central Kenya and is unlike any other Kenyan coffee we’ve tasted. Grown in volcanic soil at an elevation of more than 3,000 feet, ripening is slower for these coffee cherries, which were harvested this past summer. In the mug it smells like fresh-baked brownies and has a fruity acidity with an underlying earthiness—another home run from the Handsome Coffee crew.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Scotch Cocktails for Burns Night 2014

Photo: Stuart Mullenburg
Burns night is, for the uninitiated, an often-rowdy night of Scotch-drinking, haggis-eating, kilt-wearing and bagpipe-wielding that happens every year on (or around) January 25 in honor of Scottish poet Robert Burns. Festivities generally involve a reading of one of Burns’ most famous pieces, ideally recited in a Highland brogue and enjoyed along with plenty of whisky. Want to celebrate like the Scots? Try mixing up one of these Scotch-soaked cocktails.

Scotch Lodge
Wrap yourself in the warmth of this rich, cozy Scotch cocktail from Portland’s Multnomah Whiskey Library.

The Smoking Gun
Two notoriously assertive ingredients—Scotch and Fernet Branca—balance each other out in this flavorful after-dinner sipper.

Islay Dawn 
The notoriously sea-salty, smoky bouquet of Islay Scotch is brought into the light with the addition of juicy-sweet elements like pear liqueur, fresh lemon juice and honey.

Dagny Taggart
Named for the fictional heroine in Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, this cocktail combines Scotch with two Italian aperitifs to make one stunning sipper.

Golden Dog
Smoky, bold Scotch gets mellowed out with sweet, herbal Lillet and Benedictine. A bit of apricot brandy and a dash of bitters balance everything out.

El Nacional
The earthy richness of mezcal is paired with bitter orange and chocolate, then a few drops of smoky Islay Scotch boost this cocktail’s ethereal aromatics.

Odin’s Mead 
This potent combo of Scotch, heavy cream and beer takes its name from the infamous Norse god of wisdom, war and poetry, Odin.

Quick Sips: Tasty Bits from Around the Web

A condom for wine—really?! Mercury News

Monks in Massachusetts become the first Trappist brewers outside of Europe. NWI Times

You’ll never guess how much InBev is paying for its latest acquisition. Economist

Are wines from Uruguay the next big thing? Today

Cruise with brews on a new beer-themed boat trip. USA Today

Can specific yeast strains help keep a wine’s ABV in check? Wine Searcher

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Imbibe's New Executive Editor is Paul Clarke

Who is the mysterious man behind this firey punch? He’s written for Imbibe since our first issue, so we couldn’t be happier to announce our new Executive Editor, Paul Clarke, officially to the team! Check out his story from our first-ever issue of Imbibe right here, and join us in welcoming him to the team. 

Friday, January 17, 2014

Drink of the Week: The Imbibe 75 Cocktail

For today’s Drink of the Week we head south to one of our featured destinations in this year’s Imbibe 75, San Antonio. With a drinks scene as inspired as ever and the San Antonio Cocktail Conference in full swing, there’s no better time to get a taste. We kicked off our Alamo City festivities with a happy hour at San Antonio’s Esquire Tavern. On the menu? Today’s Drink of the Week—aptly named the Imbibe 75! Combining No. 3 gin with a lemongrass-cilantro syrup and sparkling wine, it’s a delicious twist on the classic French 75, and the perfect way to kick off the weekend.

Imbibe 75
1 oz. No. 3 gin
½ oz. lemongrass-cilantro syrup*
3 oz. sparkling wine, chilled
Tools: shaker, strainer
Glass: flute
Garnish: cilantro sprig

Combine gin and syrup and shake with ice. Strain into a chilled glass, top with sparkling wine and garnish.

*Lemongrass-Cilantro Syrup: Combine 2 cups each of granulated sugar and water with 2 4-inch lemongrass stalks (halved) and ¼ cup of chopped cilantro in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves and remove from the heat. Let cool to room temperature, strain into a clean bottle and keep refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

Houston Eaves, Esquire Tavern, San Antonio

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Quick Sips: Tasty Bits from Around the Web

An ex-ballerina and her single-malt whiskey. Edible Manhattan

One Japanese spirits company makes a $16 billion bid to buy Beam. Reuters

Can a single cup of coffee boost your memory? Forbes

How to open a bottle of wine … with a shoe. Time

Riedel is turning heads with its latest glass. Business Week

5 drinks worse for you than wine. Wine Folly

Friday, January 10, 2014

Drink of the Week: Tablas Creek "Cotes de Tablas" 2011

Situated between San Francisco and Los Angeles, the Paso Robles wine region is coming into its own—so much so that we named it a destination to watch in this year’s Imbibe 75 issue. With experimental farming and winemaking practices met by an energetic group of growers and vintners, the region’s wines are better than ever. Today’s Drink of the Week—the Cotes de Tablas from Tablas Creek—blends an organically grown mix of Grenache, Syrah, Counoise and Mourvedre (a featured flavor in this year’s Imbibe 75 issue) from estate vineyards into an approachable, yet nuanced sipper. Fermented with native yeasts is a mix of stainless steel and wood before aging for a full year in large oak foudres, this wine makes a great introduction to the region with notes of plump cherries, licorice, stone minerality and a twang of acidity on the finish. $27, tablascreek.com

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

Quick Sips: Tasty Bits from Around the Web

Seven tips to make you more beer-savvy in 2014. Los Angeles Times

Packers fans go to extreme measures to defrost their brews at a recent game. New York Post

Where to sip and swirl natural wines in Paris. New York Post

Forbes’ 30 Under 30 features a number of Imbibe alums. Forbes

Think you know what’s really in your cup of tea? Think again. Food Babe

The battle between screw cap and cork continues. NPR

Monday, January 06, 2014

75 Reasons to Raise a Glass in 2014

Cover Photo: Gary Allard
Every issue of Imbibe is a celebration of what we love about the world of drinks. But once a year, we like to get especially sentimental and dedicate an entire issue to highlighting a select group of people, places and flavors that we’re most excited to watch in the year ahead. We call it the Imbibe 75.

Last year, our inaugural Imbibe 75 Issue featured the likes of Kansas City’s Ryan Maybee as our Bartender of the Year, Alice Feiring as our Wine Person of the Year and Pouring Ribbons as our Cocktail Bar of the Year. There’s no magic formula, no competition, and the choices often seem daunting. But we like to think of this as an opportunity to take stock of what’s been happening in our world over the past year, who’s had a notable impact and who looks to have an intriguing vision for the future. 

This year, our list travels around the world, with destinations in Australia and Mexico, our Cocktail Bar of the Year in San Diego and Bartender(s) of the Year in Houston, our Beer Person of the Year in Washington, D.C., and our Coffee Person of the Year in Portland, Oregon, to name a few. Each person and place on the list shines in a unique way, whether it’s our Wine Person of the Year, Patrick Cappiello, who’s become one of the most compelling (and energetic) voices in wine, or our Cocktail Bar of the Year, San Diego’s Polite Provisions, which has combined the talent of bartending powerhouse Erick Castro with the timeless concept of quality and hospitality in a city that’s quickly becoming a world-class cocktail destination. 

There’s a lot to explore in the pages ahead, and we hope you’ll use this issue as inspiration for your own travels throughout the drinkscape—after all, you’ve got 75 reasons to start now. 

Karen Foley, Publisher

Friday, January 03, 2014

Drink of the Week: Ocean Side

Photo: Gary Allard
Our 2014 Imbibe 75 issue is officially out, and we couldn’t be more excited to share the people, places and flavors that we expect to shape the drinkscape in the coming year. One of this year’s top honors—Cocktail Bar of the Year—goes to Polite Provisions, a San Diego spot that has masterfully made customer service as important as its cocktails, and today’s Drink of the Week offers a taste of what makes their drinks so special. Bright and beachy, with a balanced mix of gin, citrus and celery, it’s the perfect cocktail for toasting the Imbibe 75’s class of 2014.

Click here for the recipe.

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Quick Sips: Tasty Bits from Around the Web

Seven of the strangest beer stories from 2013. Parade

Is fresh lime juice better as it ages? One writer tests the pH to find out. Alcademics

Starbucks serves up another cease and desist. But this time its target doesn’t go down easy. NPR

The Washington Post predicts its wine trends for 2014—do you agree? Washington Post

A high profile, storm-damaged wine cellar shuts its doors for good. Wine Spectator

Downton Abbey vs. Duck Dynasty—which pop culture wines should be recorked for good? Slate