Drinking just got much easier!

Serial Boozehound’s guide to new brands, new spots, and new events in Music City, TN…and did we mention, we throw the best parties in town!

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  • George Michael Wouldn’t be Careless about Whisper Creek

    WC Hot Chocolate Although the Nashville snow dome seems to keep our city from enjoying a winter wonderland, we’re still saddled with some cold weather around these parts. With the impending opening of Embers Ski Lodge, a Read More

    WC Hot ChocolateAlthough the Nashville snow dome seems to keep our city from enjoying a winter wonderland, we’re still saddled with some cold weather around these parts. With the impending opening of Embers Ski Lodge, a new alpine themed restaurant and lounge in 12 South, we’ll at least have a spot to pretend that we’re snuggling next to the fire with our favorite snowbunny, but what about simulating that experience at home?

    Enter Whisper Creek, the delicious Tennessee Sipping Cream from our local heroes here at SPEAKeasy Spirits. Developed in partnership with noted Nashville chef Deb Paquette of Etch, Whisper Creek has a depth of flavors that is waaaay more interesting than other typical whiskey cream liqueurs. Known for her creative flavor profiles, Chef Deb experimented with dozens of formulations before deciding on a product which offers elements of more than 30 different all-natural flavors.

    The result is a lovely sipping experience, starting out with hints of molasses, apple, caramel and figs before giving way to the sweet vanilla notes of smooth Tennessee whiskey. An additional benefit to this complex set of flavors and ingredients is that Whisper Creek is great for creating cocktails or even as an ingredient in baked desserts. While Whisper Creek is just fine straight up or with a single cube of ice, add it to your cocktail repertoire for a smooth kick in the ski pants.

    Start your experimentation with a few recipes courtesy of Whisper Creek:

    Whisper Creek Hot Chocolate
    INGREDIENTS:
    1 cup milk
    ⅓ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
    2 oz Whisper Creek Tennessee Sipping Cream

    In a saucepan over medium heat, heat milk until simmering. With a whisk, blend in chocolate chips until melted, add Whisper Creek and serve.

    Whisper Creek & Pumpkin Hot Toddy
    INGREDIENTS:
    3 oz Whisper Creek Tennessee Sipping Cream
    3 oz Whipping Cream
    3 oz Pumpkin Puree
    5 oz Boiling Water
    1 Tbsp Brown Sugar
    1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

    Combine all ingredients in blender and puree until combined. Pour mixture into saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Transfer to mugs, dust with a little extra cinnamon and serve. You may also microwave to warm.

    If any of these strike your fancy, there’s more where these came from at Whisper Creek’s website.


  • El Jimador and Herradura Name Nashville’s Tequila King and Queen

    el Jim and Herradura When it comes to great tequila, El Jimador and Herradura are two of the most dependable names in the business. So it makes sense that they should be the ones Read More

    When it comes to great tequila, El Jimador and Herradura are two of the most dependable names in the business. So it makes sense that they should be the ones to name Music City’s top tequila bartenders at the recent Bartenders Bash sponsored by Nashville Lifestyles magazine.

    Herradura’s smooth spirits include Blanco, Reposado and Anejo which are excellent for use in cocktails because they emphasize the flavors of the agave plant with just a hint of sweet oak to offset the burn of the alcohol. El Jimador is the top-selling tequila in all of Mexico, so you know that’s saying something! Either brand is a fine example of the best of Mexican spirits and deserve a space on your home liquor shelf. You do have a liquor shelf, don’t you?

    Fifteen talented mixologists competed at a festive gathering at the Loews Vanderbilt Hotel to determine who made the Best El Jimador Margarita and Best Craft Herradura Cocktail. Here’s the list of the participants:
    · Jordan Taylor at Benchmark Sports Bar & Grill

    · Cristina Plascencia at Bound’ry

    · Ryan Grosslin at Cantina Laredo

    · Christopher Krantz at Chauhan Ale & Masala House

    · Roni Chrisitan at Drifter’s

    · Faith Barnes at Hard Rock Cafe

    · Rodrigo Quintanilla at Mason’s

    · Nick DeLorenzo at Pinewood Social

    · Josiah Johnson at Rosepepper Cantina

    · Andy Acuff at Saint Anejo

    · Daniel Cheney at Sinema

    · Charles Fields at Taqueria Del Sol

    · Zachary Helton at Watermark

    · Misty Blu Stewart at Whiskey Kitchen

    · Brendan Winger at Urban Grub

    A panel of judges chose the winners, and there was also a People’s Choice Award to recognize the audience favorite. In the end, the winners were Cristina Plascencia for Best El Jimador Margarita, Rodrigo Quintanilla with the Best Craft Herradura Cocktail and Nick Delorenzo took home the People’s Choice Award.

    But really, are there any losers in a tequila contest? No, there are not.


  • Smells Like NEAT Spirits

    1391980554383-701489383 Scientists claim that the sense of smell makes up a large percentage of the experience that we describe at “taste.” Clearly those scientists don’t realize that you can have a pretty good night of drinking even if you Read More

    Scientists claim that the sense of smell makes up a large percentage of the experience that we describe at “taste.” Clearly those scientists don’t realize that you can have a pretty good night of drinking even if you are stricken by Nashville’s worst-ever allergy environment. But the aroma of food and spirits does represent an important factor in truly appreciating the good stuff.

    Unfortunately, most spirits tasting glasses are actually designed to concentrate the hot vapors of evaporating alcohol and position your nose right in the middle of the hot zone. But if you really want to experience all the subtle nuances of a gin that is full of botanicals or a whiskey that is redolent of oak, vanilla and caramel, the makers of the NEAT Ultimate Spirits Glass have an excellent solution for you.

    The NEAT glass is designed with a broad stemless base to allow for easy warming and swirling of spirits. The unique design of the upper half of the glass squeezes the aromas and allows the alcohol vapors to flow over the flared rim of the glass. This releases the flavorful esters and aromas into a sweet spot directly over the top of the glass opening, right where your nose goes.

    While you can certainly drink out of the NEAT glass, it’s on the nose where you really appreciate the difference. Filling the glass to the widest part of the bell only allows for a little more than an ounce of alcohol, but the point of using it is to discover new nuances of aromas and tastes, not to officially get your drink on. However, the design of the rim does fan the spirit across your tongue to hit the different flavor receptors, as opposed to a shot glass which can bypass your tongue altogether.

    I tried a sample of Peg Leg Porker Tennessee Straight Bourbon out of the NEAT glass, and I was astounded by the new aromas that I discovered. This is by no means a new whiskey for me, so I am very familiar with the product. But I never considered it to be a super complex bourbon, thanks to a fairly short finish. In the NEAT glass, suddenly I detected citrus notes and a waft of ripe bananas which was totally unexpected. It was like buying some new perfume for your longtime girlfriend and pretending that she’s somebody you just met.

    I didn’t feel like I was cheating on Peg Leg, though. The NEAT glass just exposed me to some delicious details that were previously undetected. At only $19.99 at the company’s website, the NEAT glass can make spirits nosing and tasting a real pleasure, and maybe even introduce you to new reasons to love your old favorites!


  • 2014 Nashville Bar/Restaurant List (Updated)

    ls Germantown: 1. 5th & Taylor (October) 2. Cochon Butcher (Spring 2015) 3. Butchertown Hall (October) 4. Jack Brown’s Beer & Burger Joint 5. McGavock’s (September) 6. 312 Pizza Co. (Open) 7. Whiskey Bar 8. Nashville Tea House (September) 9. Juice Bar 10. Sloco (Open) 11. Octane Coffee (Spring 2015) 12. The Little Donkey (Spring 2015) 13. Helen’s Hot Chicken (Open) 14. Read More

    Germantown:
    1. 5th & Taylor (October)
    2. Cochon Butcher (Spring 2015)
    3. Butchertown Hall (October)
    4. Jack Brown’s Beer & Burger Joint
    5. McGavock’s (September)
    6. 312 Pizza Co. (Open)
    7. Whiskey Bar
    8. Nashville Tea House (September)
    9. Juice Bar
    10. Sloco (Open)
    11. Octane Coffee (Spring 2015)
    12. The Little Donkey (Spring 2015)
    13. Helen’s Hot Chicken (Open)
    14. The Picnic Tap (September)
    15. Jeni’s Ice Cream (Rumored)
    16. NFM Butcher Shop (Rumored)
    17. Barista Parlor (Spring 2015)

    Sylvan Park/Nations:
    1. FLIP Burger Boutique
    2. The Beer Pale (October)
    3. 46th & Charlotte restaurant(s)
    4. Hattie B’s Hot Chicken (Open)
    5. Turtle Anarchy Brewing Company
    6. Monviso Italian Cafe
    7. Hill Center Sylvan Park
    8. Rumours Wine Bar (September)
    9. Avo (Fall)
    10. Calypso Cafe (Open)
    11. Jeni’s Ice Cream (Rumored)
    12. Edley’s BBQ (Rumored)

    Downtown:
    1. Nashville Street Tacos (Open)
    2. Trattoria il Mulino
    3. The Diner
    4. The Southernaire Butcher (Fall)
    5. Acme Feed & Seed (Open)
    6. Czann’s Brewing Company (Open)
    7. City Winery (October 1)
    8. 21C Museum Hotel Bar/Restaurant
    9. Jim N Nick’s (October)
    10. The Bell Tower
    11. Tin Roof (Open)
    12. Bakersfield (Fall)
    13. The Project Beacon
    14. Gearheads
    15. Hob Knobs Martini & Cigar Bar
    16. Frothy Monkey Roasting Company (2015)
    17. Nelson’s Green Brier Distillery (Open)
    18. Ace Hotel Restaurant(s)
    19. Smith & Lentz Brewery (Late 2014)
    20. Twin Kegs II (Open)

    West End:
    1. F. Scott’s
    2. Newk’s (Fall)
    3. Cook Out

    Gulch:
    1. Prima
    2. Party Fowl (August)
    3. Chauhan Ale & Masala House (September)
    4. Adele’s by Jonathan Waxman (Open)
    5. Barista Parlor Golden Sound
    6. Biscuit Love (Fall)

    12 South:
    1. The Flipside (Open)
    2. Thai Esane (Open)
    3. Embers Ski Lodge (August)
    4. Bartaco

    East Nashville:
    1. POP Nashville (Open)
    2. Little Harpeth Brewing
    3. Lynn Lorraine’s (Open)
    4. The Post East (Open)
    5. Koi (Open)
    6. Rudie’s by David Mitchell
    7. The Local Taco
    8. A Matter of Taste
    9. The Porter House Bistro (August)
    10. Field House (August 23)
    11. The Vine (September)

    West Nashville:
    1. Hillwood Pub
    2. Tailgate Beer Brewery & Beer Garden

    100 Oaks:
    1. Wholly Chow (Open)

    Melrose:
    1. The Sutler Saloon (September)
    2. Sinema (Open)
    3. Unnamed Diner Concept from Bongo Java
    4. Love Peace & Pho (September)

    Berry Hill:
    1. Juice Bar (Summer)

    Midtown:
    1. Union Common (Open)
    2. Oddfellows (August)

    Cool Springs:
    1. Pie Five Pizza

    Church/Elliston:
    1. French Landing Brewing Company
    2. Urban Stack Burger Lounge
    3. Milk & Honey
    4. Hurry Back (Open)
    5. Nama
    6. Magnolia South (September)

    Chestnut Hill/Wedgewood/Houston:
    1. Nashville Craft Distillery (Late Summer)
    2. Clawson’s Pub
    3. Corsair Artisan Distillery
    4. Smokin Thighs (August)
    5. The Red Bicycle
    6. Dozen Bakery

    Antioch:
    1. Tango Grill (Open)

    Brentwood:
    1. Stout Burgers & Beers

    Franklin:
    1. Juice Bar (Fall)

    Spring Hill:
    1. Martin’s BBQ (2015)

    Unknown:
    1. Dinner Lab (Proposed)
    2. Jeff Ruby restaurant
    3. Yeah! Burger (Late 2014)
    4. Rita’s Italian Ice
    5. Pie Five Pizza (Multiple locations)
    6. Yardbird
    7. Graeter’s Ice Cream
    8. Farm Burger


  • Hangover Helper, When You Need a Helping Hand

    Hungover If I’ve learned one thing from many trips to Vegas for various debaucherous weekends, it’s hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! The hot and dry climate ensures that all those yard-long margaritas and Fireball shots take even more of a Read More

    If I’ve learned one thing from many trips to Vegas for various debaucherous weekends, it’s hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! The hot and dry climate ensures that all those yard-long margaritas and Fireball shots take even more of a toll on your body than they do here in God’s Country. Once you allow yourself to get dehydrated, it’s next to impossible to catch up. You’ll end up feeling like you have a walking case of the flu, exactly when you and your buddies want to rage at full strength. Don’t be the party-pooper; drink a bottle of water every hour if it’s summertime and at least every couple hours if it’s another season. (Even winter in arid Las Vegas will suck the H2O out of you quicker than you realize.)

    If I’ve learned two things from my Vegas vacations, it’s to always trust Friend-of-Dipsomaniac Sin City cocktail expert Xania Woodman when it comes to advice. Not only does she know more than your average bear about the history and culture of spirits and the best spots to enjoy a craft cocktail in Las Vegas, but she also lives what she preaches. Girl throws down!

    Her recent column for VegasSeven proves that she’s willing to put her money where her liver is. For all of our benefit, Xania took a visit to Hangover Heaven, a specialized clinic dedicated to the prevention and treatment of nasty hangovers. Run by the piercingly-dark-eyed-Dr. Jason Burke, Hangover Helper offers treatments like the Rapture treatment ($239), which Xania reports “includes 30 minutes of oxygen, a suped-up vitamin B shot and IV delivery of a proprietary blend of fluids, antacid, antinausea medication, anti-inflammatories and other goodies, such as the antioxidant glutathione.”

    I can’t remember the last time I had enough glutathione in my system. Hangover Heaven even offers a team of paramedics which they send out to hotels to administer treatments to the poor bastards who can’t even roll out of the rack to make it to their clinic location behind the Fashion Show Mall. Apparently, the franchise is looking to expand, so maybe the “It City” of Nashville will have our own Hangover Heaven soon.