The Tasting Panel magazine

April 2011

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Page 118 of 124

WHAT WE’RE DRINKING Spring Fling FIVE PRODUCTS I’VE GOT A CRUSH ON THIS SEASON by Rachel Burkons This Flip is No Flop The snow has fi nally melted, which means—Hallelujah!—your feet can fi nally be freed from the sweltering oppression of wool socks and heavy boots. That’s right, toes, it’s fi nally fl ip-fl op weather. Helping get your palate in the spring swing is the new lineup of fl ipfl op wines, a fun, value-driven brand that offers a casual drinking experience meant to be paired (and shared) with comfort food. I opened a bottle to share with my mom, and we fl ipped for the zesty tropi- cal pear-and-citrus nature of the Pinot Grigio—pedicure not included. www.fl ipfl Citrus Kisses Lemonade stands may be for kids, but Bella Lula’s refreshingly sophisticated line of lemonades and orangeades, crafted in Bordeaux from all natural ingredients, is anything but juvenile. With bright, lightly-sweet fl avors kissed by a hint of mint, they beg to be mixed into spring-y cocktails. My mouth is still watering from a Bella Lula and Tanqueray concoction I threw together at home, so imagine what this base could do in the hands of a real mixologist. Snack Attack I hate math (curses to you, high school pre-calculus), but here’s some simple addition I can get behind: beer + chocolate + pretzels = a seriously good thing. Combining the three in a way that will make your taste buds sing is Chicago-based tru± e tru± e, a confectionery that offers a collection of beer-and-pretzel treats that will hit your sweet and salty receptors—all with a hint of chocolate stout goodness. www.truffl etruffl 116 / the tasting panel / april 201 1 Fizz Biz I love sparkles. From sequins to cham- pagne, nothing adds more pizzazz to the mundane than that little something extra provided by a good ole’ sparkle or two. Putting this non-scientifi c fact in action is Sipp, a line of luxury carbonated “eco bever- ages” that caters to the green-chic crowd with Ginger Blossom, Honey Pear and Mojo Berry sparklers sure to sass up any cocktail in an environmentally-conscious way. Hands-On Spirits With names like Root and Snap, these artisan spirits—cre- ated by the think tank entre- preneurs at Philly-based Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction—sound more like some über-hip new bar or restaurant than excellent certifi ed organic, 80-proof liqueurs (wild root and ginger, respectively). But drinkable and mixable they are, with their roots (pun cer- tainly intended) in the pre-Prohibition world of small-batch production, resulting in fi nely-honed, nuanced fl avors that are extremely mixable and also lovely when explored neat.

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