Tag Archive: Toronto Temperance Society


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For an experience like in the video above, get yourself a membership to the Toronto Temperance Society. I had the pleasure of checking them out a couple of months ago and their cocktail list is the shit. Exclusive tastings, ultra-professional staff and the kind of atmosphere that allows for a decent conversation don’t hurt either.

Some people gripe about the price but it’s cheaper than a gym membership and you’ll probably use it more.

NEWS

Ontario’s finally becoming a little less staid as the provincial government says it will relax the liquor laws come summertime. Whether this is pandering to voters in the upcoming provincial election or not, I know it will make this year’s festivals so much better. (The Globe And Mail)

In a move designed to gussy up its image a bit, The Beer Store is opening a new concept in Liberty Village called “The Beer Boutique”. While it will feature the same selection as other stores, customers will be able to feel better about buying their beer from a private monopoly. No word on whether the boutique will feature transients returning empties in shopping carts. (PostCity)

A profile of Will Predhomme, the sommelier of Canoe and the fun, fascinating and often tricky world of purveying wine. (Toronto Life)

Even the tea leaf has its own sommeliers now. Andrew Marone and Judy Lin who run t-buds will find the perfect cup for you. (PostCity)

El Gordo, the food court home to Agave & Aguacate, now has a patio. No more standing up while you make a mess of Francisco Alejandri’s tostadas! (Spice City Toronto)

If you think the only good champagne is branded Dom Perignon or Veuve Cliquot, think again. Their blends don’t compare to individual vineyard’s efforts, known as “grower champagne”. (Good Food Revolution)

For those of you excited by that recent Japanese study, let me rain on your parade with a little calorie-counting. Two pints of beer can equal about 45o calories. Two cans of regular soda contain 300 calories. I always felt kind of smug about not drinking soda but I’m going to stop right now (feeling superior that is; I’m still going to drink beer). (National Post)

FOOD

If you couldn’t get enough of his amazing sandwiches, Caplanksky’s is about to increase the ways to enjoy them with two delivery bikes and a food truck! Sure beats a hotdog… (Taste T.O.)

Supermarkets that are open all twenty-four hours of the day can be awfully convenient but get some shopping done at one of the many farmer’s markets operating in Toronto. (The Globe And Mail)

Nick auf Der Mauer, owner of Porchetta (one of my favorite places to eat in the city), shares his recipe for rapini with garlic and chili. I’ll still go to his shop for the sandwiches. (The Toronto Star)

Next time you’re going out on the town with your mickey, put together a proper cocktail. Sure, you could just fill it with vodka but you don’t want to be the guy getting plastered all on his lonesome. Share and bask in the appreciation!

One of my favorite mixes (for an 8oz flask mind you, go for 16oz and be the life of the party!) starts with 6oz of bourbon. Add 1oz of Frangelico, 1oz of Cointreau and a 3 heavy dashes of Angostura bitters and you’re good to go. |NOLA|

Bored with bourbon? Substitute your spirits and be delighted with the infinite variables now open to you! |SF Gate|

A good example of this would be the “Rum Manhattan“. |Eat.Drink.Think|

For those of you who like a little protein with your cocktail, try one of these ten fat-washed cocktails. I’m totally down with the Irish Bacon Sour but maple syrup makes everything better. |Time|

Fruit will always be popular and when combined with gin, you really can’t go wrong with a cocktail like The Bramble. Remember, anything vodka can do, gin can do better. |Science of Drink|

Don’t believe me? Try the Orange Blossom (a far superior Screwdriver). |SLOSHED!|

Moonshine’s not just for country-folk anymore; the nerds have taken over! |The Atlantic||McClatchy|

I love mezcal even more than tequila. It’s smoky deliciousness and I’m digging how it’s starting to get its due. It’ll be the next big thing after rum, mark my words. |The New York Times|

If you were a student (or poor or both) in the first part of the twenty-first century, you probably bought a case of Lakeport at least once or twice. Labatt is closing the Lakeport Brewery in Hamilton and moving its production south-west to London to save money.

They’re not releasing any figures but I’m betting consumers faced with better, equally-cheap options have moved on. |The Globe And Mail|

While Ontarians are losing their jobs, Danish workers are striking because Carlsberg has decided to limit the consumption of beer to lunchtime. Drivers in particular are upset, pointing to a “very old right” to get buzzed on up to three beers per day. |Sky News|

Researchers at Harvard University are saying that a person’s social network may influence their drinking, with folks being “50 percent more likely to drink heavily if a person they are directly connected to drinks heavily and 36 percent more likely to drink heavily if a friend of a friend drinks heavily”.

This is pretty worrying, especially when you factor in that people are 28 percent more likely to jump off a cliff in the presence of their peers. |Sifiy News|

Socially-responsible branding only seems to happen in Canada (and maybe Scandinavia). Over in the EU, two Germans  have received permission to sell their beer which goes by the name of “Fucking Hell”, the former being the name of a small town in Austria and the latter the German term for a pale lager.

The loophole seems to be the absence of a reference to a particular person, group, act or instruction which rules out the half-dozen brands my friends and I came up with one drunken night (everything from “Tranny Surprise” to “Uncle Joe’s Pogrom Ale”) |New Zealand Herald|

While we might have the Toronto Temperance Society, cities down south have been playing this game for awhile: Washington DC has the Columbia Room which, while not having a membership, charges $65 per person for a boozy prix fixe. |The Washington Post|

For those who want the appearance of a speakeasy without the exclusivity, the little town of Bethlehem (Pennsylvania) has The Bookstore, an homage to all things turn-of-the-century. |Lehigh Valley Live|

Or there’s always the top ten most unusual bars in the world. Cover all of your bases. |Travel Vivi|

Beer Goggler: The perfect app for anyone experiencing one night stand regret. |App Shopper|

Or you could just have standards (but you probably wouldn’t have as many good stories). Another useful accessory for saving your seat and/or drink is the Seat Saver, a clever amalgamation of coaster and marker. |Beer Mats Rule!|

(Photo taken from Anne Taintor’s website. Go buy a flask from her.)

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I really, really love Jen Kirkman. She’s pretty much always funny but I think she’s even hotter when she’s drunk.

Korean scientists have found that adding oxygen bubbles to alcohol reduces the time needed to recover from a hangover by about half-an-hour. They also found that the effects stack so even if you drink a lot of this booze, the effects of the hangover are not as debilitating and happen with less frequency.

Just what people need. A way to drink more often and not pay for it. Why don’t we just snort alcohol? |i09|

Or you could just chase your whiskey with pickle juice which is what I’ll be doing come next Wednesday (St. Patrick’s Day!!) |The Washington Post|

Tired of shitty cocktails made by bartenders who don’t care? Give a robo-bartender a try! (Or you could just patronize good bars.) |Wired|

If you’ve ever made a bad drink, you probably tried to fix it. Seeing as it’s all about balance, here are some great suggestions for reviving dead-on-arrival cocktails. Ginger beer is so easy but I agree with the bitters comment. If an ingredient always makes a drink better, it is really a cheat? |Kaiser Penguin|

We don’t get any of Sierra Nevada’s line up here but the idea in this article that I find interesting is the idea of a good, solid beer being overlooked when something new and stylish comes along. A good example of that up here would be Black Oak’s Nut Brown Ale. Another example might be Mike Duggan’s No. 9 making Mill Street’s Tankhouse Ale seem bland. |CHOW|

The Barbacoa combines ginger and chipolte among other things. I would imagine the peppers work very well with mezcal and the idea of garnishing with beef jerky gets me all tingly. Can’t wait to try it! |Saveur|

If you’re looking for something a bit sweeter, try the Oh Pear. I’d substitute a scotch for the Irish whiskey and I would necessarily use a pear liqueur (maybe a cinnamon syrup?) but it looks delicious regardless. |Imbibe|

I really like the cocktail pitcher but several of these bar tools are must-haves for entertaining at home. Square ice cube trays really are essential. |Valet|

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Toronto’s cocktail scene is about to get a major upgrade with the opening of the Toronto Temperance Society. Perhaps embodying the maxim “drink less, drink better” more than any other venue, the club promises to the sort of joint where you never have to worry about getting anything different than the drink you ordered (unless you like Appletinis).

Only thing is, you have to pay an annual membership fee of $285 for the privilege of hanging out with like-minded imbibers.  Perfection doesn’t come cheap…

In another instance of exclusivity = credibility, a travelling cocktail party in Los Angeles is the Next Big Thing. Only a matter of time before someone starts doing that here (hey, wait-a-minute).

Apparently, shit beer equals poor stock performance for major beer companies. Who’d have thought? Even better, the supposed panacea for these corporations involves buying up perfectly good craft breweries and wringing every little bit of individuality from their recipes.

Robert Parker, the venerable wine critic, rated a wine higher in a blind tasting than he had in his published review of it earler. Cue snickering

Alcademics reviews a new liqueur from Bolivia that is made from coca leaves. While not quite monkey-for-your-back, it apparently does give you a boost. They also take a look at a mezcal, my new favorite tipple.

I’ll drink a bicicletta if it means I get to have a two-hour lunch in the afternoon to boot! Half-an-hour is practically criminal.

Moonshine goes mainstream with white whiskey. Hopefully the LCBO will get notice and start selling a bottle here (I’m not holding my breath).

Another thing they should get on Right Away is St. Germain. Why is this not available in Canada? It practically sells itself! Here are some cocktails to tide you over…

Over at A Mountain Of Crushed Ice, Tiare talks about collecting bar tools (which is about as wonderfully geeky as you can get when it comes to the industry).

Dr. Bamboo resucitates Midori melon liqueur (at least for enthusiasts) with a cocktail that actually sounds pretty tasty. I predict a dark age revival… Can new uses for blue curacao be far behind?

I grit my teeth every time someone asks for a Keiths. A Good Beer Blog pointed me in the direction of guys who just might be my heroes. I wouldn’t mind so much if people just admitted to being biased towards mainstream brands.

If I had a little more discipline, I’d release my own brand of syrups and bitters instead of waiting for lines like Trader Tiki to make their way up to Canada.

SLOSHED! puts together a Bumble-bee Cocktail which sounds amazing, courtesy of Charles H. Baker Jr. and his book, Gentlemen’s Companion (not a new release in case you were wondering). They’ve also managed to introduce me to my new favorite quote (by the same man)

…all really interesting people–sportsman, explorers, musicians, scientists, vagabonds and writers–were vitally interested in good things to eat and drink; cared for exotic and intriguing ways of composing them. We soon discovered further that this keen interest was not solely through gluttony, the spur of hunger or merely to sustain life, but in a spirit of high adventure.

What an excellent sentiment!

(Image taken from Boing-Boing)

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