Vermouth Is Better Than You Think

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My experience thus far with Vermouth is a poorly made Martini and a poorly made Manhattan, so I wasn’t surprised that I wasn’t too excited about writing a post about it. But, bear with me, and you’ll find that Vermouth is better than you think. Way better.

A good friend of mine suggested it would make a good post and got me started with some great information, so I bought a bottle of sweet/red and dry Vermouth. After playing around with it in a few drinks, I ended up drinking it neat, and now love it. I doubt most people would enjoy it neat, but this is always a great way to really understand your cocktail ingredients and what flavor they impart.

Things to know about Vermouth

First, let’s talk about what vermouth is. Vermouth is an aromatized  and fortified wine. That basically means that it’s wine with brandy and botanicals (herbs, spices, roots, bark) added. That leads us to the first thing I, and probably most people, didn’t understand. Unlike the rest of your liquor cabinet, these guys spoil just like wine. Because of the higher alcohol content, it might take a little longer than wine, but it will still definitely spoil.

Second, Vermouth is a pretty cool drink that has been a staple aperitif for forever. However, it’s pretty unappreciated in America, and has been for a long time. Not really sure why, but I can definitely support this. I’ve only had it once or twice as a secondary ingredient, and I’d be willing to bet most people are the same way.

Third, there are a bunch of different varieties that you can somewhat connected across makers, but Red/Sweet and Dry are what are most commonly available. For this post, I’ll concentrate on the Red/Sweet.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s drink it!

Vermouth Spoiling Taste Test

Earlier in the post we talked about how Vermouth spoils after opening, so let’s taste test how.

Not knowing this, I of course had a bottle of Sweet Vermouth open in my liquor cabinet for months, which makes for a perfect comparison. We tried both the brand-new and the old and opened Vermouth neat.

The brand-new Vermouth was sweet, bright, and had a nice herb smell and aftertaste, like  having a glass of Italian Red Wine and one of those little rosemary breadstick things the have in Italian restaurants (kind of brought me back to Italy, actually). Now that I know that, I’ll enjoy it frequently neat or on the rocks.

The old Vermouth was probably not old enough to have a off odor or taste, but it will if left unconsumed long enough. Instead, it wasn’t that bad, it just wasn’t that good. It had lost all the best parts of the brand-new Vermouth, and had gotten fairly boring.

The best advise I was given here is to only buy the little (375 mL) bottle unless you know you’ll go through more quickly. Also, be aware that you may get bad Vermouth at a bar or restaurant if they’re not going through it quickly.

 

Some really good additional information can be found here: vermouth101.com

Blood Orange Season!

blood orange cocktail

Blood Orange Cocktail Recipe

My local grocery store has blood oranges, so here’s a blood orange cocktail recipe to celebrate:

We tried it with both Vodka and Gin, and prefered it with Gin. It might be fun to try with a dark Rum as well, be we ran out of oranges. See our previous post taste testing Triple Sec versus Cointreau, and use Triple Sec for a sweeter drink or Cointreau for a cleaner, stronger drink.

#JadoreDessange Dessange VoxBox Review

I received the Dessange VoxBox to review as part of my account with Influenster.

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The Dessange VoxBox came with Dessange Oleo Miracle Replenishing ShampooDessange Oleo Miracle Replenishing Conditioner, and the Dessange Oleo Miracle Replenishing Oil.

My Review

First let me say, I HATE the scent. It is overly perfumed and is a really heavy, musky smell.
That aside, the shampoo and conditioner are amazing. My naturally dry and limp hair was softer and fuller with just one wash.
The oil was my favorite product. You know those flyaways you get after blow drying or straight ironing? Those were completely smoothed out with only one squirt of the replenishing oil  and it lasted all day.
Bottom line: I will definitely continue to use the products I have and would buy these products again in a different scent.
Dessange products are available at Target and are on Amazon.

I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.

Netflix Watch List March 2015: What We’re Watching Now

I am always seeking out new and interesting things to watch on Netflix. Sometimes it seems like their selection is so big it’s impossible to choose something you like so I thought I’d give you a glimpse of what we have watched recently and recommend to add to your Netflix watch list.

netflix must watch

Parenthood

TV Series, Drama

parenthood

I know I am super late to this game, but I started from the beginning and have been loving this series.

Peaky Blinders

TV Series, Historical Crime Drama

peaky blinders

This series is so good, but beware there are only two seasons so far. Also, you may have to turn on the subtitles during some points because the accent gets really thick.

In A World

Comedy Film

in a world

Enjoyable comedy for both sexes. Great movie for a Friday night in.

Under the Electric Sky

Documentary

under the electric sky“The film chronicles the community and life of festival-goers during Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas, the largest dance and music festival held in the US.”

I know, you’re skeptical, but you must try it.

The Gruffalo

Kids

Gruffalo

This is a really cool narration and animation of a children’s book. It is narrated with the most soothing voice ever and is great for talking about imagination. If you like it try The Gruffalo’s Child also.

What have you watched recently on Netflix that you would recommend? What is on your Netflix watch list?

Traveling with Toddlers: What to Pack

In March I will be traveling with my two toddlers. Alone. Enter my comprehensive list of what to pack in your carry-on when traveling with toddlers.

travel with toddlers what to pack in carry on - fresh take 5

1. Skip Hop Little Kid Backpack

Make them carry their own water and snacks. They will love it and it will free up some space in your carry-on.

Snacks

2. Munchkin Snack Catchers

At under $5 for a set of two, if you don’t have these already, buy them now and thank me later. They are awesome at home or on the go.

3. DumDums

These are great for toddlers who no longer nurse. The sucking motion helps their ears adjust to the altitude changes.

4. Camelbak Kids Bottle

We love these at our house. Each kid has one and they are perfect for travel because they don’t leak.

Entertainment

5. Drawing Essentials Keep N’ Carry Set

This little kit is so cute and way cheap (under $6). My daughter loves it and plays with all the time even at home.

6. AquaDoodle

The perfect coloring travel book that works by filling the pen with water. *Fill once you are through security if you are traveling by air.

7. LilGadgets Untangled Pro Kids Headphones

These bluetooth headphones are awesome and perfect for busybody kids who wiggle a lot.

8. PlayDoh

Keep their hands busy with PlayDoh. It’s cheap and takes up very little of your valuable travel space.

9. iPad

Yeah, what can I even say, iPads are awesome. Even better when the kids are entertained for a significant amount of time.