Brandied Apples

Brandied Apples

The 20th is National Brandied Fruit Day, so I decided to get a jump start and make some delicious brandied apple rings. I’d only had brandied fruit once before-and never brandied apples-so I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed these sweet bits of alcoholic goodness. They’re a bit of a process to make,  but the result is certainly worth the effort. Continue reading

Brandy Alexander- October’s Cocktail of the Month

Brandy Alexander- October's Cocktail of the Month
As the weather gets cooler I find myself more and more drawn to creamy drinks. Something about the smooth, silky texture screams luxurious self-indulgence and when made and consumed at home they save me from stepping out in the chilly night air.

My current obsession is a classic cocktail that’s stood the test of time: the Brandy Alexander. Lightly sweet and supremely creamy, this drink is the perfect accompaniment to a good book and a crackling fire.

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Home Cocktail Woes: 5 Reasons Your Drinks Don’t Taste Like a Mixologist’s

Making cocktails at home is much cheaper than going to bars and is, in my opinion, also infinitely more satisfying. If you’re cocktails aren’t coming out as well as those made by mixologists, there are 5 mistakes you can avoid to up your game and enjoy exceptional cocktails in the comfort of your own home.

You don't balance sweet and sour- 5 Reasons Your Drinks Don't Taste Like a Mixologist's

1. You don’t balance sweet and sour
For your cocktails to provide unforgettable flavor, you must make sure to balance sweetness and sourness. Sweet components include the obvious such as sugar, honey, and agave, but also liqueurs and many fruit juices. Sour components include citurs juices, cranverry juice, vinegars (such as shrubs), and vermouth. When trying out a new cocktail or ingredient, it is important to taste the finished product to make sure it is balanced.

You mangle or underutilize Herbs- 5 Reasons Your Cocktails Don't Taste Like a Mixologist's

2. You mangle or under-utilize herbs
Herbs need to be somewhat disturbed to access their flavor and aroma- simply tossing them in a drink will do little to enhance the drinking experience. On the other end of he spectrum, if you over-muddle herbs, especially mint, you can release the unpleasant bitterness of chlorophyll.

You are inattentive to technique- 5 Reasons Your Drinks Don't Taste Like a Mixologist's

3. You are inattentive to method
Shaking and stirring are very different methods of preparation. If you shake a cocktail that should be stirred (Manhattan, Old Fashioned, Negroni)you will get a different mouth-feel and dilution. If you stir a drink that should be shaken (most citrus-centric drinks) the flavors will not meld and be as lively as they could be.

You don't measure- 5 Reasons Your Cocktails Don't Taste Like a Mixologist's

4. You don’t measure
Unless you’re an eyeing wizz kid or have been working in the industry for years, you really should measure everything. When a cocktail is only 4-6 oz, even being .25 oz off can make a huge difference in flavor.

You undervalue ice- 5 Reasons Your Cocktails Don't Taste Like a Mixologist's

5. You undervalue ice
Please, please do not build a perfectly composed cocktail over ice that’s been in your freezer for three months. The ice will have soaked up the flavor of everything in your friends and those flavors will make an appearance in your cocktail. Similarly, it is worth it to strain your chilled cocktail over fresh ice to avoid over diluting it.

Hopefully these tips will help you make even more delicious cocktails to enjoy at home.

3 Smoothies to Try on your 3-Day Weekend

love smoothies. It is a deep and passionate love made even more intense by my daily 7:00 am departure from home that prevents me from having time to make a smoothie, enjoy it, and clean the blender.

So when the weekend comes around I take deep pleasure in piling fruit, soy milk, and any other fixings I’m feeling that say into the blender. I generally don’t follow a recipe, but the past three weekends I’ve decided to try new things out. These are the three best recipes I found, and I plan to enjoy them on this long weekend!

Strawberry Orange Protein Smoothie

The Greek yogurt in this smoothie packs a protein punch and the strawberries and orange juice make it lively and full of vitamins.


Almond Coconut Mocha Protein Smoothie

almond coconut mocha protein smoothie 10

Coffee is king, so anyone who fits it into food becomes one of my favorite people. This delightful recipe features intense coffee flavor and strong notes of coconut and almond. The addition of protein powder makes this a great drink for gym day.

Raspberry Almond Chia Smoothie

This smoothie is not only pretty, its loaded with protein and calcium and packed with flavor. The perfect breakfast to start your day!

Chia seeds make almost anything better, and this smoothie is not exception. Frozen raspberries make this drink light and refreshing.



12 Reasons I Invest in My Fitness

My last class of college was a personal finance class that lasted for one month and was held from 9 am to 12 pm Monday through Thursday. I learned many useful facts and skills in that class, but what stuck with me was the massively different outcomes from beginning to save at 22 vs 35.


My professor showed us a graph similar to the one above and it made a remarkable impact on me. At that moment I decided that as soon as I started working I would start saving.

My professor showed me that graph shortly after I started getting really into fitness. It took me a while to really draw the connection. Like financial investments, investing in fitness requires you to give up something now (time and perhaps money) to gain something later.

So here’s a list of my top 12 reasons reasons to put that time in now.


1. To have more energy to do what I love.


2. To have more time (long term) to spend with those I love.


3. To see the looks of surprise when I can carry a 160 lb keg.


4. To help me be happy.


5.To be proud of what I’m capable of.

Image result for powerlifting


6. To not break a hip.


7. To set and surpass goals.


8. To feel strong even when my legs are jelly.


9. To develop an intimate connection with my body.


10. To have an edge.


11. To look the way I want.


12. To have fun!

Mojito- August’s Cocktail of the Month

Mojitos are delightful drinks. They are light and refreshing so they are ideal for hot August weather. They are fairly time intensive to make, though, so give your bartender a break and make one at home.

Mojito- August's Cocktail of the Month


2 oz white rum
1 oz lime juice
1 oz mineral water
2 teaspoons superfine sugar
15 fresh mint leaves
1 mint leaf (garnish)

1. Gently muddle the mint leaves, superfine sugar, and lime juice.
2. Add ice, rum, and mineral water. Stir to chill and combine.
3. Rub the remaining mint leaf around the rim of the class then set on top. of drink.


Hopefully this inspires you to try this classic cocktail out for yourself!

Mental Health During a Breakup: 7 Ways to Keep On Keeping On


So, Fiance is no longer Fiance. Now he is Ex. It’s a unfortunate situation, and that’s about all the wider internet world needs to know.

As you might expect, this isn’t exacting a thrilling time in my life. Luckily for you people, when I’m upset I like to bury myself in research and my rational mind, so you get to benefit from that.

Here’re the top 7 ways to help yourself along through a breakup:

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Why Men Who Appreciate Cocktails are Hot

Fiance loves Scrubs. He watched it a lot with friends in high school and college, so it has good associations for him. We were watching it together one day and something stood out to me- the show has an interesting mixture of gender disciplining and great feminist moments. A recurring instance of gender disciplining that’s relevant to this blog is Dorian’s taste for appletini’s when all other male characters drink beer or straight liquor. Whenever JD orders this cocktail he encounters reactions that range from eye rolls to outright derision for his choice of drinks. Continue reading

Cape Codder- July’s Cocktail of the Month


Here in Indiana some people have been enjoying poolside bliss for several weeks now.  But for wimps like me, it’s finally getting to be swimming weather! I anticipate spending a lot of time in my apartment building’s pool during July to get in some exercise and sunlight.

Sometimes, however, a refreshing dip in the pool isn’t enough. Luckily my pool allows us to bring drinks to the pool area, so I can cool myself from the inside out as well as outside in.

My favorite so far has been the Cape Codder because it’s fruity but still light and not sweet.

Hopefully you all have a lovely, sunny spot at which you can enjoy one too!

Cape Codder

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DIY Ginger Beer

DIY Ginger Beer

Ginger is one of my favorite flavors. It makes its way into almost all of my cooking and ginger beer makes it into many of the drinks that I enjoy at home. From Moscow Mules to Nor’Easters, ginger beer makes a regular appearance in my drink rotation. I have found several brands that I enjoy, but given the the regularity  with which I use ginger beer and the perpetual presence of ginger in my fridge I wanted to try out a DIY option. Continue reading