The Tasting Panel magazine

October 2011

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Page 36 of 128

ALTERNATIVE BEVERAGES Strike a Pose S by Rachel Burkons ince this is THE TASTING PANEL's big fashion issue (be sure to check out our couture cocktail report on page 108!), and fall is the perfect time to give your bever- age arsenal a makeover, we're taking a look at fi ve new non-alc products that are rocking the beverage world with their own innovative style and fabulous fl are. Ginger Ale Not all ginger ales are created equal. Upping the ante on the gourmet-ginger game is Q Ginger, a dapper drink that really puts the kick in classic cocktails like the Moscow Mule. Made with real ginger and lightly sweetened with agave, Q Ginger is perfectly balanced with bite and brawn. A model-ale! In this vintage ad from 1912, White Rock was at the center of Times Square. Vintage Vixen Icy Ingénue Sparkling Ice and I have a romantic backstory. As regular readers of this column know, I've got a soft spot for all things pretty and sparkly, which is why the Sparkling Ice lineup caught my eye one day in the grocery store. I made a mental note to look up the brand, but it was clearly meant to be: The very next day, samples arrived on my desk. I love the pretty pastel and jewel- toned colors, and the bright, refreshingly sweet bubbliness is perfect in its non-soda appeal. Simple and sweet! Couture Coff ee Italian-based illy is a supermodel in the coffee world. Sleek and sexy, the illy brand is iconic, with its signature red label as distinctive as Louis Vuitton's interlocking LV. Taking the brand to mass-market appeal are two new low-cal offer- ings, illy issimo caff é no sugar, an espresso- style drink that's all business (and caffeine), and illy issimo mochaccino, a chocolaty dream that's an innocent indulgence. With only 100 calories per can, even the stingiest of runway walkers will sip on this classic. 36 / the tasting panel / october 201 1 While the wine and spirit worlds are fi lled with tenth-generation winemakers and centuries-old drams, there are few venerable grand dames in the non-alc world. Looking as good today as it did 140 years ago, White Rock Beverages offers a charming lineup of classic mixers and sodas, and I love the brand's vintage appeal—and cute pixie on the bottle. Bedazzled Bloody Mary Garnish is an accessory for your cocktail, and like a killer pair of earrings, an eye-catching ornament for your cocktail can go a long way. Sure, brunch and Bloody Marys are always in style, but now, there's a new product on the market that's giving this classic cocktail a beefy make- over. Benny's Bloody Mary Beef Straw, the ultimate Bloody embellishment, kicks the boring old plastic straw to the curb, combining form and function with a product that you can really sink your teeth into. GQ

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