It’s long been thought that spices are good for the sex drive. Eating spices like cloves and ginger increases the blood flow, which should make for a more passionate Valentine’s night. Red wine is already known to be good in that respect too, but if your idea of a spicy spirit is Fireball Cinnamon Whisky you definitely need to up the ante and get a special liquor for a special occasion. Here are eight of our favorite spicy spirits for Valentine’s Day.
Maggie’s Farm Spiced Rum
Spiced rums are a common style of rum, and among the spices usually used are cinnamon, pepper, cloves, and cardamom. One of the most awarded spiced rums around comes, surprisingly, not from the Caribbean but from Pittsburgh. This independent craft distillery uses all-natural ingredients and infuses its regular white rum with Tahitian vanilla bean, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, anise, and fresh-grated orange zest, to produce a quality spiced rum. http://maggiesfarmrum.com.
Old New Orleans Cajun Spiced Rum
New Orleans is famous for spirits and spices, and this spiced rum brings them both together. The distillery takes all the spices that traditionally go into Cajun cuisine – cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, clove, ginger, and cayenne, along with vanilla and chicory – and create a kind of tea-bag with them all in it. They then steep their regular rum in this for 4-6 weeks to produce New Orleans in a bottle. https://oldneworleansrum.com.
Tanteo Jalapeño Tequila
If tequila is your tipple there are several spicy options to choose from. One that is 100% blue agave is Tanteo’s Jalapeño Tequila, which has picked up lots of awards. It manages to retain the taste of the agave but spice it up by infusing the tequila with jalapeño peppers, but also retain a bit of the sweetness that peppers have too. It gives margaritas a real kick, and if you like it Tanteo also does habanero and chipotle tequilas too. www.tanteotequila.com.
Cascade Chipotle Pepper-Flavored Vodka
You don’t have to be in the Southwest or Mexico to like your flavors hot. This sizzling vodka comes from the little town of Sisters in Oregon, using local spring water. The vodka is infused with slow-smoked jalapeños to produce a drink that is deliciously smoky and very reasonably priced. http://cascadestreetdistillery.com.
Opihr Oriental Spiced Gin
Most gins contain some spices, although it isn’t actually a legal requirement. Cinnamon, coriander, and nutmeg are all common. If you want a gin that’s really been spiced up, though, try this English London Dry Gin. The flavor’s been enhanced by including a bunch of spices that were originally brought back to the UK along the Old Silk Road. These include Indonesian Cubeb berries, Indian black pepper, cumin seeds, cardamom, and ginger. http://us.opihr.com.
Darnley’s View Spiced Gin
This English gin is so heavily-spiced that some critics have said that the spices overpower the juniper so much that it isn’t really gin at all. So if you like spices but don’t like gin’s juniper taste, try this. Spices include cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cumin, cloves, and coriander. An unusual addition is grains of paradise from West Africa. A member of the ginger family, the seeds give an extra pepperiness to the drink. www.darnleysview.com.
St George Green Chile Vodka
Made in Alameda, California, this superior spicy vodka uses California-grown hot and sweet peppers (jalapenos, Serranos, habaneros, red and yellow bell peppers) to produce a spirit you can sip or use to hot up a cocktail. It’s a very subtle vodka and you can read my review of it here. www.stgeorgespirits.com.
Ancho Reyes Ancho Chili Liqueur
To round off the meal, and keep the spices flowing, try a sip of this liqueur that’s infused with spicy ancho chiles. You can sip it on its own, if you like your flavors strong, or you can use it to add a dash of fire to a late-night coffee or even a hot chocolate. www.anchoreyes.com.
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October 22 • Uncategorized
Dia de los Muertos: Food, Culture and Tradition
Homes around the U.S. are being decorated with pumpkins, ghouls and witches in anticipation of Halloween, but in Mexico, the date coincides with the start of a more ancient tradition that has nothing to do with fright and much to do with culture, food and drinks.
September 29 • Bolivian Wine
Bolivian Wine: from the Andes to your Table
Bolivia may not instantly come to mind when one thinks of wine, but the South American country has a long and rich viticulture history that dates back to the arrival of the Spanish missionaries, who first planted vines around the wealthy silver-mining city of Potosi in the mid-16th century.
September 25 • Coffee Producers
The ‘Arabica’ Whisperer
The best part of waking up? Well, it’s coffee, of course.
Humanity truly runs on this beverage that helps millions of people around the world wake up, work and function. And if it’s of the Arabica variety, its delicious ‘kick’ will keep you going strong all day long.
September 15 • Latino Heritage Month
Raise a toast to Latino Heritage Month
The Empire State Building kicked off Latino Heritage Month by shining red, white and green colors onto the New York skylight on September 15 in honor of the Mexican flag.
August 16 • Music
PEOPLE ARE STRANGE: Jim Morrison
Jim was quoted in his poetic nature: “Being drunk is a good disguise.” He said. “It means I can talk to assholes.”
May 31 • Civil rights
Hennessy: The Cognac of Hip Hop & Civil Rights (Part 2)
It’s safe to say we would all agree Hennessy and Hip-Hop are associated with each other in a special way. We would even go as far to say, Hennessy has reached global iconic status thanks to that fact. That being said, while the cognac of hip-hop was catapulted to its iconic stature thanks to the help of artist like Tupac and Nas, what we don’t know by looking at the surface is that Hennessy has a long standing tradition of supporting people of African decent.
July 15 • shots
The First “Shot” Ever Served: A Tale of the West
It’s always a race against the heat in the West. Hell, there’s a score of difference races around here. There’s a race to the riches and a race to the hills where the riches lay. There’s a race to food and shelter and the means in which a man might make to get them. There’s a race to the women and to the brothels and saloons where you can find them at. I don’t look for my women in those places but I often find myself in them for other races. Mine is a race to whiskey. It’s only a matter of time before I find myself in one today.
October 20 • Bolivia
Bertil Tøttenborg, Sommelier at renowned GUSTU Restaurant - The magnificence of Bolivian wines