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alphaiii

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  1. alphaiii

    Favorite vodkas

    1. Blue Hen 2. Rain 3. Pearl 4. Belvedere 5. Kustkova
  2. alphaiii

    Apricot Brandy: Apry, Etc.

    I just bought a bottle of Marie Brizzard Apry tonight for my dad for Father's Day. The store I got it from has had at least one bottle on the shelf all but maybe 2 times (that I've noticed) that I've been there since I moved to Baltimore last Aug. Since I've been there so many times, and it is almost always on the shelf, I assume they stock it regularly, in which case there must still be a US importer. That, or there is a decent stockpile in MD or at this particular store.
  3. alphaiii

    All about Tequila

    I recommend either a snifter or, better yet, a Riedel Overture tequila glass. Since I imagine you probably don't have the latter just lying around, I think a small snifter is your best bet.
  4. alphaiii

    your favorite brands/spirits

    Updated List, with tequila split into 2 categories, b/c it's hard to pick reposado vs. blanco/silver - it depends on the mood I'm in. REPOSADO TEQUILA 1. Casa Noble Reposado 2. El Tesoro Reposado 3. Don Julio Reposado or Cabo Wabo Reposado - it's a toss up BLANCO/SILVER TEQUILA 1. El Tesoro Platinum 2. Casa Noble Crystal 3. Herradura Silver VODKA 1. Pearl 2. Kutskova 3. Van Hoo BOURBON 1. Eagle Rare Single Barrel 10 Year 2. Van Winkle Special Reserve 12 Year 3. Michter's US1 Small Batch Unblended American Whiskey (technically not bourbon, and maybe a suprising choice, but a real nice change of pace when I want something light on oak that still has plenty of flavor) GIN 1. Tanqueray No. Ten 2. Beefeater 3. Broker's As you can see, my tastes change a little here and there. It's amazing how you recall something after trying it only once, and how much that opinion can change when you try it a few more times.
  5. alphaiii

    your favorite brands/spirits

    I think you have some good choices. I'm a fan of Belvedere and Tito's vodkas, and a big fan of El Tesoro Platinum. And while not my favorites, I think Knob Creek and Evan Williams Single Barrel are both quality bourbons. I keep eyeing up Sailor Jerry, but haven't bought it yet since I don't drink much rum. I don't have any in the cabinet now though so maybe I should pick up a bottle. I have yet to hear anyone say anything bad about it. That reminds me, maybe I should update my list sometime, since I've tried quite a few new drinks lately.
  6. alphaiii

    Worst Beer Ever Tasted

    OK, I tried Dogfish Head Midas Touch Golden Elixir tonight. I am a big fan of some of Dogfish brews, especially the 60 Min IPA. So I figured this would probably be a good brew as well, and for $10 for 4 of them, I really hoped it would be. DAMN WAS I WRONG. This stuff is just awful. I don't even know how it can be considered an ale. I don't even know how to describe it other than plain terrible. So much for this pleasing an IPA drinker as the Dogfish website claims. What a waste of $10. I could've gotten a 6 pack of so many good brews for less than that price. I basically paid $10 to take 2 sips of one of the worst tasting liquids I've ever tried. OK, rant over. I'm just so irritated I wasted my money. So supposedly, according to the Dogfish site, this stuff ages well for up to a year. I guess I will leave it sit in the cabinet for a few months and then re-try it. If it's still this awful, I will have another swearing fit for good measure.
  7. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20051116/ap_on_bi_ge/beer_battle I say...WHO CARES?....Neither beer has much taste.
  8. Then you're not too far from one of the best microbrews in the country (IMO) - Kalamazoo Brewing Company (Bell's). I envy you. Since I've moved to MD I don't have access to Bell's microbrews anymore - they don't distribute here. Their Two-Hearted Ale may be the best IPA I've had. The Double Cream Stout, Pale Ale, and Kalamazoo Stout are also really good brews. I haven't had an opportunity to try some of the others, but I am guessing they are quality brews as well.
  9. alphaiii

    Casa Noble Tequila

    I was out to dinner at a nice Mexican restaurant tonight and had the opportunity to try Casa Noble Crystal (a silver) and Reposado - so of course I didn't pass it up, and I drank some tequila. All I can say is WOW!. I am so impressed with these tequilas. Incredibly smooth without sacrificing any flavor. I have to say I'm a little partial to reposados in general, and there is no exception here. But the silver is damn good too. If you enjoy good tequila and ever have a chance to try these - do so. You won't be disappointed. On a side note, I also tried Herradura Silver, which was suprisingly good (I wasn't overly impressed with the Herradura reposado). It's just as flavorful as the Casa Noble, but not as smooth. Knowing I can get the Herradura as low as $26 a bottle, it may become a new staple in my house. Unfortunately for me, pressures of grad school exams kept me from sampling alot of the others I saw sitting behind the bar....calling my name....
  10. To be honest, I don't know. I've only lived here for a few months now. I actually think the South Side of Pittsburgh (especially along Carson St.) has more bars than Fell's Point, but I could be wrong on that. It may just seem that way because I haven't explored all of Fell's yet. Either way, there are definitely a lot of bars.
  11. Last night I took a trip to Duclaw Brewery (Fell's Point in Baltimore) for their Barleywine release. First, I had the old standby, Bad Moon Porter. I really enjoy this brew. Then I tried the seasonal Barleywine, called Devil's Milk. At 11.5% this stuff is potent, but if is fruity (I swear I taste raspberry) and hoppy. It's not real bitter like an IPA, but has that fresh hops taste. Overall I think it's a damn good brew. I better be careful around this one. Before ending the night I also tried the Twisted Kilt, which is a Scotch Ale. I was not a fan of this one at all. Way too sweet for my liking. If any of you live in or near Baltimore, I'd suggest taking a trip to one of the Duclaw restaurants sometime. Now is a good time of year because they still have the Mad Bishop Oktoberfest on tap and the Devil's Milk was just released so it should be around for a bit before they run out. As for the staple brews, the Bad Moon Porter and Venon Pale Ale (they should just call it an IPA) are both really good brews.
  12. alphaiii

    Here's the meal plan

    Thanks for the suggestions everyone. I'll make the dressing with the marinade ingredients. jack, good point on the cheese. I didn't really think of that. No need to add more cheese flavors to the meal. As for the steak, I love strip steaks but I know she's a fan of filet, so I'm gonna stick with that. I'll skip on the marinade for that and go for one of the compound butters listed here. I've never done a compound butter before. Anything I need to keep in mind when preparing it so I don't mess it up? I'll probably opt for one of the simpler ones. I appreciate the recipe Ling, but that might be a bit much for me, especially if you think the recipe is "fussy."
  13. alphaiii

    Here's the meal plan

    The plan is to cook a meal for the little lady. Now I am by no means a chef, but I think I can handle cooking a decent meal. Seared Yellow-Fin Tuna over Baby Spinach and Arugula Leaves Garlic Cheddar Mashed Red Potatoes (skin on) Grilled Asparagus Filet Mignon And to drink: Pinot Noir, 2002 Waterstone (recommended by the staff at The Wine Source in Baltimore) I am planning to marinate the Tuna in the following (I actually found this here somewhere in this forum): Extra Virgin Olive Oil Minced Garlic Soy Sauce Coarse Black Pepper Fresh Lime Juice I need a suggestion for a dressing to put on the tuna/greens. I was thinking a Vinaigrette: Red Wine and Olive Oil, Raspberry Walnut, or Balsalmic. Not really sure which would fit best. Also, what would you marinate the Filet in? I have some of the store mixes, the Grill Mates stuff. I like the Montreal Steak kind, but for some reason a package mix doesn't seem to to do all this effort justice. If it were just for me, I'd just use the package stuff, but that's because I'm not picky. Filet is good just about any way you do it, unless of course you burn the hell out of it. Another idea was to scratch the marinate altogether and brush the filet with olive oil and grill it, then melt some gorgonzola cheese over it (if I can find it at my store). Any suggestions for the kitchen novice will be appreciated.
  14. alphaiii

    whiskies I'd like to try

    LOL. The only reason I ask was because I've read posts by some users at another forum and the general thought (although not everyone thought this) was that the Old Rip Van Winkle 15 was better than the new Pappy Van Winkle Family Reserve 15 bottling. Apparantly, ORVW came from a different distillery than that of the PVW.
  15. alphaiii

    whiskies I'd like to try

    Did you try the new bottling - the Pappy Van Winkle 15 Year Old - or the Old Rip Van Winkle 15 Year Old version?
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