Ünnecessary Ümlaut


A surplus of geekery by :: Fred Abercrombie

Drink This: Botanica Gin by Falcon Spirits

I’ve been so engulfed in the flood of inventive, new craft beers hittin’ shelves that I haven’t checked out what’s been going on in liquor with hand-crafted spirits. This local gin is a bold reminder:  there’s plenty of creativity happening on the other side of the craft aisle…


There’s so much going on in Botanica Spiritvs Gin. All in a good way. And all with no surprise… It’s hand-made from a guy who used to be a UC Berkeley Biochemist with a penchant for digging up old cocktail recipes and obscure bitters. He pushed boundaries while exploring different roles, like wine maker and bartender, before compiling all his learnings and settling as a Distiller.

You can taste both the craft and the science in Botanica Spirtvs, too (you just can’t taste the ‘n’.) Using predominantly Vapor infusion, his team at Falcon Spirits have managed to layer in complex herbs and fruits that play as well together on the nose as they mingle ‘n pay off on your palate. Pretty impressive.


Yup, that’s real hand numbering. Not just “craft-y” design. Their Still can only produce 300 bottles in each batch so they’re able to assure quality and attention to detail.


If you’re in the Bay Area you’ll find bottles of Botanica at Ledger’s Liquors in Berkeley or in SF at The Jug Shop and K&L Wine Merchants.

Or see what some of the finer mixologists are doing with Botanica at Slanted Door SF or À Côté in Oakland. Cheers!

Follow Falcon Spirits on Facebook »

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How To: Make a Bacon-Infused Old Fashioned
Just Bottled: Batch 05 of Firelit / Blue Bottle Coffee Liqueur
Watch: Lagunitas’ Couch Goes 2000 Miles in 2 Mins
Don’t Miss: Inaugural Petaluma River Craft Beer Festival

Just Bottled: Batch 05 of Firelit / Blue Bottle Coffee Liqueur

So fresh you can smell the coffee.
And the ink on the hand-stamped labels.

Every batch of Firelit Spirits coffee liqueur uses a different fresh roast and local roaster—usually. Batch 05, marks their third with Oakland‘s Blue Bottle Coffee but this time they chosen a Peaberry Yirgacheffe bean. It’s not the holy-grail, cat poo coffee bean, but it sounds deliciously close. Look for it on shelves immediately.

Firelit on Facebook »


See the rest »

Go Now: Bacon Milkshakes at Jack In The Box

This not only looks amazing, it looks legit. If I can track one of ’em down I’ll report back with a photo and review. That is, if they can resuscitate me afterwards. (via SFist)

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Beer Güt Shirt

Beer: Deep Fried Bacon Dog and Anchor Humming Ale at TAPS Petaluma
Pork Rider: Jeremy Fish Designs New OJ Skateboard Wheels
Star Wars: AT-AT Walkers made of Bacon, Legos, Cotton
SFBW: “Hop Stoopid + Bacon” Beer Ice Cream at Humphry Slocombe
Oink: Bacon Beer at the Winter Brews Fest
Yum: Maple Glazed Bacon Apple Dynamo Donuts
HowTo: Turbaconducken (Yes, Turducken Wrapped In Bacon)
Celebrate International Bacon Day
HowTo: Make A Flaming Bacon Lance of Death
Eat: Bacon-Infused Ice Cream & Pig Nipples

Now Bottling: Batch 04 of Firelit Coffee Liqueur

Today isn’t just a day where the fresh coffee nectar known as Firelit goes into bottles,

it’s also the day where founder Jeff Kessinger, art director Tyler Warrender, and several other strong-wristed cohorts hand-stamp each and every label on said bottles. Something the fellow Bay Area folks at Almanac Beer, with their hand-signed bottles, know a thing or two about.

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Firelit Batch 04 Roast Info

What I love about Firelit is how they use different local roasters / beans for every small batch they do. The first two releases used Oakland‘s Blue Bottle Coffee. The third batch used San Rafael‘s Weaver’s Coffee. Now, for Batch 04, they’re using Santa Cruz‘s Verve Coffee Roasters. St. George Spirits, where the liqueur is produced, has sold out of every bottle from previous batches so if you see an older one on a shelf, snag it with a quickness. Otherwise keep an eye out for where to find the new batch here.

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Ron Swanson: A Moustachioed Bacon Lover After My Own Heart

If you haven’t given Parks & Recreation a chance yet, go now—it’s free on Hulu so you don’t have an excuse not to. And if you already have, the show’s really grown into its own. So try again. Ron Swanson‘s become one of my favorite characters on TV the web. The guy knows how to eat. (Thanks, Mel)

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CamStache: The First Facial Recognition Follicle Combobulator
Beerds: 14 Hairy Beer Labels
Gallery: Petaluma Whiskerino 2010 Pics
Vintage Vegas: Moustache Cup from Caesars Palace
KYEO: The Billboard That Made Me Rethink Eating Cats
Photoshop: Man Moustaches on Lady Celebrities
Vote: I Heart Meat Shirt
Pork Rider: Jeremy Fish Designs New OJ Skateboard Wheels
Moustache: The Lando Calrissian Disguise Kit

Adv: Chocolate Website for Chocolate Beer, Sagres Preta Stout

To help promote Portugal brewery Sagres‘ new Preta Chocolate Stout, their digital agency Grand Union Portugal came up with what they thought was a fitting launchpad for a chocolate beer: a chocolate webpage. Duh.

So they hired the Artistic Director of the Óbidos International Chocolate Festival to lead the sculpting. Creating not just a flat “web page”, but going full boar creating all the buttons, number tiles for the loading screen (which only added to the heavy load time, IMO), sliding modules, and more. Then they shot it all and used it as the basis for the website.

Cool. And no doubt delicious. But a long climb up the mountain for a small sip of cocoa. Then again, I am sharing it. And you are reading this. So, guess it worked. A sia saide!

Check out the finished product:

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Watch: The Top 10 Freaks from Lagunitas Beer Circus 2011
WTF: Spend 9 Minutes Covered in Chocolate
Awesome: Sears Website Gets Zombified
Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #30: Island Creek Oyster Stout
Beer: Raven’s Eye Imperial Stout from Eel River
Fail: Amazon’s White Bra / Black Girl Bra
KYEO: Lombard Street Turning Into Giant Candyland Game
Much Needed: Watch “Truth in Beervertising”
Watch: Hahn Beer Commercial is Superbly Epic

Drink: New Roast/Roaster for Firelit Coffee Liqueur Batch 03

The first two batches of Bay Area’s delicious Firelit Coffee Liqueur used a different roast of Blue Bottle Coffee beans for each. It’s part of what made them so distinct (and collectable).  But now they’re mixing things up even further.

Apparently, partnering with different local coffee roasters is all part of the Firelit plan …


Batch 03 uses a new artisan roaster out of San Rafael who NBC Today Show called “the best organic coffee”, See the rest »

Yum: Glazed & Amazed on the ampm Secret Menu

‘Glazed & Amazed’

Yes, it’s real. And it’s spectacular. You take an ampm Sausage, Egg & Cheese Croissant and switch out the croissant with glazed doughnuts. It’s all part of the new Secret Menu campaign our team at Ogilvy just launched. Pretty much a big invitation to come up with your own creations and try something new. Go nuts.

‘Glazed & Amazed’ on Vimeo.

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ampm Secret Menu ‘Dough Ray Moo’

‘Dough Ray Moo’

The double-cheeseburger cousin of ‘Glazed & Amazed’.

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LA: Philippe’s French Dip and Lance Mountain

On the edge of LA’s Chinatown sits the birthplace of the French Dip sandwich, Philippe’s. Or at least, that’s what they say. Go downtown and Cole’s will claim the same thing. I can’t speak for Cole’s, but Philippe’s was a fine sando. [Sorry, no pic. It went down too fast.] For a pre-dipped version, it was surprisingly moist and flavorful without being a sloppy, drowning mess. And they score points for their clientele:

As ecstatic as he looks to put down his dip and take a pic with another, Lance was actually super nice. Hopefully I’ll be able to harass him at the X-Games tomorrow. Stalker alert!

Adv: Skating A Full Pool
Gnarcade: 8-Bit Attack on Mt. Hood
Art: Shadow Skaters by TR853-1
Skate: Nike SB “Today Was A Good Day” with Paul Rodriguez and Ice Cube (and Lance Mountain?)

Seek Out: Wild Flour Bread Bakery in Freestone

Sweet fancy Moses … this little bakery is so worth the drive from SF. Hell, it’s worth the drive from Chicago.

The sticky buns are what hooked us the first time we stumbled across Wild Flour Bread Bakery. The rest of their brick oven creations are what brought us back.

Hidden just outside of See the rest »