Lushworthy News | – Part 5

A few months ago I received Amy Stewart’s “The Drunken Botanist: The Plants That Create The World’s Great Drinks” as part of a gift set I was sent, and thank goodness I did because it’s a book I really enjoyed, but probably wouldn’t have picked up on my own. If you’re a booze lover and you’ve considered picking up “The Drunken Botanist” then please go for it, my friend! But if you need a little extra motivation, I’ve listed a few reasons why you need to hit up your local bookstore and pick up a copy ASAP.

Infinite Booze Knowledge – Okay, “infinite” might be a bit of a strong word, but you’re bound to learn a thing or two or 20 while reading “The Drunken Botanist.” I mean, it’s like the Rosetta Stone of booze. Alright, that’s another wonky comparison, but you get the idea. It’s chock-full of great facts.

Lushworthy Recipes – From sake cocktails to classic sips and everything in between, nearly every chapter of “The Drunken Botanist” includes a few drink recipes. You’ll probably love some more than others, but trust me, you’ll have plenty to choose from.

A Hard-Cover Beauty – “The Drunken Botanist” comes in hard-cover form and instead of being covered in those annoying sleeves that slip and slide all over the place, it boasts a pretty handsome cover. In fact, it’s such a looker, I’d go so far as to say that it might make a nice addition to your home bar.

A Surprisingly Entertaining Read – I’m a sucker for a good story. So, it’s rare that I’ll choose non-fiction over fiction, but despite being loaded with all kinds of boozy facts, “The Drunken Botanist” is an entertaining and enjoyable read thanks to Stewart’s conversational and occasionally witty tone.

You can pick up “The Drunken Botanist” at Barnes & Noble (a.k.a. my eighth favorite place in the world) and a number of other retailers.

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It’s no secret that the craft beer market has exploded over the past years. Even cruise lines, yes cruise lines, are getting in on this latest booze trend. Crystal Cruises, who previously featured a beer connoisseur menu on select cruises, has just announced their new craft beer theme for the Crystal Fall Culinary Cruise.

The brew-centric luxury cruise will consist of expert presentations, cooking and cocktail classes, tasting sessions, and dinners. In addition to on board experiences, guests will also have the opportunity to visit breweries on the mainland. Also pretty cool is the fact that this particular cruise will take you to a variety of ports including ones in Baltimore, Maryland, Charleston, South Carolina, Turks & Caicos, and Aruba.

Oh, and here’s one more “pretty cool” mention, the cruise will include appearances from brew connoisseurs Stephen Beaumont, Jon Ashton, and Anthony Caporale, who will help lead the various classes and demonstrations.

“We’ve recently seen the growing interest in microbrews, from crafting to drinking, reflected in our own guests’ palates, leading us to add international specialty beers to our Connoisseur beverage menu in 2013,” says Toni Neumeister, vice president, food and beverage operations and hotel procurement.  “A microbrew theme in 2014 is a natural extension of that interest, utilizing the programming format of our successful ‘Wine & Food’-cruises to expand travelers’ palates and minds in new ways that can last well beyond their cruise.”

Cruise fares, which are all-inclusive, start at $3,700.

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As much as I love the Atlanta Food & Wine Festival, it can definitely be overwhelming at times. The annual festival, which will take place from May 29 to June 1, includes various dinners, seminars, and tasting tents. The tasting tents alone are enough to bring foodies and boozies (is that a word yet?) to their knees with joy.

In case things get a little too overwhelming, I’ve gone ahead and created somewhat of a Lushworthy-inspired tasting tent cheat sheet for the Atlanta Food & Wine Festival (AFWF). Below you’ll find the names of a handful of brands that will all have tents during the festival. I’ve also included a brief description as to why I think you should check ‘em out. Oh, and the three digit number in bold at the end of each description shows where you can find their tent on the official festival map.

Campari America –  With over 45 spirits to its name, you can be sure that Campari America will be slinging some must-have cocktails during AFWF. 191

Savannah Sweet Tea Lemonade Bourbon – I’m not terribly familiar with this brand, but since I’m obsessed with the city of Savannah, bourbon, and both sweet tea and lemonade, this sounds like a solid tasting tent winner. 186

Wines Of Chile – If you’re a lover of all things vino then I’m sure you’re quite familiar with the wines coming out of the Southern American country of Chile. It’s said to be some of the best in the world. Even if you’re not a wine lover you should still indulge in at least a few sips. 209

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Following the launch of D’USSE in 2012, the Bacardi-owned brand has welcomed its first expression, D’USSE XO. Described as “a unique blend of meticulously hand-selected eaux-de-vie, aged ten years or more,” D’USSE XO is said to boast “flavor notes of ripe blackberry and apricot, layered with hints of dark chocolate and walnut.” Sounds like a boozy trip to Godiva Chocolatier. And that definitely works for me.

“Following the highly successful launch of D’USSE VSOP, there is an opportunity to lead the evolution of the Cognac category even further,” said Robert Furniss-Roe, President of Bacardi North America. “Consumers are fascinated with dark spirits and care more than ever about the quality and level of craftsmanship in the brands they consume. D’USSE XO is the response to that request.”

For a while the newly-introduced cognac was only available to the entertainment and cocktailing elite, but now you can get your hands on a bottle of D’USSE XO for a cool $230.

The Cap’n Welcomes New Captain Morgan 1671 Commemorative Blend.

Legend has it that Captain Henry Morgan lost five ships while traveling to Panama City, Panama in the late 1600′s. Among the ships he lost was his flagship, Satisfaction.

What was the point of that brief history lesson, you ask? Well, the new, limited edition Captain Morgan 1671 Commemorative Blend is inspired by the Satisfaction. In fact, Captain Morgan’s latest spirit is finished in Spanish Oak, which is said to have also been used in the barrels that were on board Captain Morgan’s doomed ship. Kinda cool, right?

Also cool is the fact that it’s one of few commemorative blends that’s affordable. You can get your hands on a bottle of Captain Morgan 1671 Commemorative Blend (750 mL) for only $19.99.

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From carefully curated wine dinners to homemade, boozy Italian ices, those at Davio’s Atlanta sure know a thing or two about keeping things Lushworthy. And starting this June, Davio’s will introduce a new, boozy item to their menu, sparkling champagne floats. There will be three floats total (lemon, mango, and blueberry) and they’ll each be available for purchase for only $6. They’re all made using Prosecco and sorbet, but you can find the exact ingredients for each sparkling champagne float below. (Floats will be available until August)

Lemon Sorbetti 

Prosecco, Fresh Squeezed Lemon, Cane Sugar, and Lemon Sorbet. Garnish with a dehydrated lemon wheel.

Mango Sorbetti 

Prosecco, Absolut Mandarin Vodka, and Mango Sorbet. Garnish with dehydrated orange wheel.

Blueberry Sorbetti

Prosecco, Absolut Citron Vodka, Blueberry Syrup, and Blueberry Sorbet. Garnish with dehydrated lemon wheel.

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If you’re a lover of booze then there’s a good chance that you’re all for sipping on a classic cocktail. I love a great classic cocktail too, but every now and then it’s nice to switch things up a bit and revamp a classic. And Hugh Acheson of Empire State South (ATL represent!) has done just that with his “Mint Mutiny” cocktail. The “Mint Mutiny” was created just in time for this weekend’s Kentucky Derby and as you’ve probably guessed, it serves as a remix to the classic “Mint Julep.”

The folks over at Captain Morgan, which serves as the primary ingredient in the “Mint Mutiny” sent over a kit for making Acheson’s cocktail and also invited me to take part in their #MintMutiny Twitter competition. Basically, whichever blogger receives the most #MintMutiny retweets will receive a trip to either the Belmont Stakes or Preakness Stakes.

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