Bring on the Merry with a Pomegranate Paloma

Did you try out last week’s Holiday Margarita?  We have another cheerful cocktail to share with you.  You may remember from past posts that Paloma’s are one of our favorite easy-to-fix cocktails for summer.  We  love the festive flair that pomegranates bring to cocktails during the holiday season.  We combined these two favorites for a cheerful pom paloma drink.

There are many pomegranate paloma recipes on the internet, but we have developed our own which earned six thumbs up (Craig, Rhonda and Blind Piglet #1)!  We make ours with blanco tequila (we used Espalon), pom juice, lime juice, cocktail ready agave nectar and Topo Chico with lime. Since this cocktail has 1.5 ounces of alcohol shared among too drinks, it won’t get you too tipsy under the mistletoe.

If you are viewing this post via email, please visit us at www.theblindpig.blog for a full printable recipe for the Pomegranate Paloma.

Pomegranates are always a great addition to any holiday cocktail. The fruity flavor gives a festive vibe without overpowering appetizers or desserts, the color is beautiful and looks great near any holiday spread, and its easy to garnish with rosemary or other holiday trinkets.  In fact, the color of the Pomegranate Paloma is such a beautiful, rich, red that you might see this pop up again if a certain team makes it to the Super Bowl!

Try out this easy-to-fix and drink cocktail tonight.  We’d love to hear what you think. More fun holiday ideas are on the way to you over the next few weeks.  We are hoping that we can get all of them in before we reach Christmas. (Fingers crossed!)  Good luck with your holiday decorating, shopping, and wrapping!

 

Disclaimer:  Beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older. We do not condone underage drinking.  Drink responsibly.

 

Best Dressed Drinks

Just like the right accessories for your favorite outfit, the trend in cocktails is the more embellished, the better.  Any trained chef will tell you that the presentation is almost as important as the taste.  We have wanted to write this post for more than a year, but always seemed to have a more urgent recipe or idea that we wanted to share with you.  Once we started exploring the idea of cocktail garnishing we realized that this topic goes much deeper than a cute umbrella in your pina colada!  This post is going to focus on some common and easy ways to garnish a cocktail.

In our  Orange  Basil Spritzer, we glazed some blood red oranges with some sugar and a creme brulee torch. Then we added a whole basil leaf as a float.

First you want to make sure that the aroma and the flavor of your garnish pairs well with your drink. You don’t want to stick a cube of cheese with tequila based cocktail or pair watermelon with a bloody Mary.  Or maybe you do?

In our Orange Anejo Sour we use the froth from the egg white to help our slice of orange float.

There are a variety of items that you have around your kitchen that can easily be used or purchased to give your cocktails a little extra flair.  Here are some of our favorite choices for garnish.

Use Fresh Fruit. The easy choices are fresh fruits.  Place a slice of citrus, such as, a lime wheel or a slice a pineapple on the edge of the glass.  It is simple, but still adds a pleasing visual to your cocktails that entices the senses.

The layering effect of the wine, square ice cube and a dehydrated lime wheel give an interesting visual for our fall cocktail the Rojo.

Use citrus peels. Using the peel of citrus is a very popular way to garnish cocktails.  Use a peeler to peel off a piece of the peel.  You can simply plop the peel into the cocktail or you can ribbon it through with a cocktail skewer for a fancier look.  Fine ribbons of peel are popular to use.  You can spiral them around the glass or twist them around a skewer into a cute little spiral.  We have even seen bartenders take citrus peels and fold them like origami into cute sculptures to place on the edge of a glass.

In the Spiced Manhattan we ribboned a lemon peel through a skewer and added some Luxardo cherries.

Use berries. While we are on the topic of fruit, don’t forget about fresh or frozen berries.  Berries can easily be placed on a skewer, toothpick or just plopped in the glass or pitcher as a float.  Berries are one of the easiest ways to add color and some added appeal to a cocktail.

Layered effect with an orange wedge, cranberries and sprig of rosemary in the Holiday Aperol Spritz.

Use fresh herbs. Sprigs of fresh herbs also make a great garnish.  Not only is this an easy garnish to use– all you have to do is snip it and place it in the drink.  We love to use fresh herbs in the summer.  We just go out to our garden snip a few herbs and head back inside — instant garnish.  Herbs that we often use for garnish are: thyme, basil, rosemary, and mint.

The Savannah Special is garnished with rosemary and a blackberries.

Use vegetables. Vegetables are often forgotten as a garnish for cocktails, but can make a very effective display.  One of our go-to vegetables to use is cucumber.  We like add slices or long strips of cucumber to summer drinks.  Other great vegetables to use for garnish are carrot strips, pickles, asparagus, celery, tomatoes (yes, its a fruit…), and little baby corns.

Double Thyme is garnished with fresh thyme and a sliver of cucumber.

Bacon, peppers, celery, and shrimp anything goes in this Bloody Mary.

Don’t forget the ice!  The kind of ice you choose and what you put into the ice can also be used to impress your guests with a very visual cocktail.  We share some of our ideas about ice with you years ago in our Ice, Ice Baby post.

A flag and a moon shaped ice cube finish the look of the Moon Walk.

Berries, fresh mint and a heart stirring stick layer the garnish for the Raspberry Mojito.

Use fun trinkets. You can use non-edibles in your cocktail, like colorful straws, cute stirrers, cocktail umbrellas or other funny little trinkets.

The Menta Daiquiri looks like a party on the beach with a cute umbrella.

Make sure to layer. The real artwork in garnishing comes from layering several of these ideas together into a spectacular visual display.  Depending on the look you are going for, the crazier the better.

Basil, strawberries and an American flag garnish the Strawberry Basil Margarita.

It’s all in the details. Whether you are serving a glass of sparkling water or a bloody Mary to your guests, take time to prep for a special garnish.  It makes any beverage look best dressed and makes your guests feel a little more pampered.  What is your signature garnish?  We would love to hear your ideas.  Look for future posts on garnishes.  We still have more ideas to share with you.

The Reverse Manhattan is enhanced by a simple skewer of Luxardo cherries.

 

 

 

Top Posts of 2019

The holiday haze is almost clearing around The Blind Pig household.  Everyone will be back to school and work next week.  We had such a wonderful holiday season.  In early December we visited Blind Piglet #1 in NYC.

Later in December we were with family and friends in Missouri.  Our niece got married, and we took in a KC Chiefs football game.

We came back home to Dallas and lucked into some tickets to go to the NHL Winter Classic.  No one can ever accuse our family of not making the most out of time off of work and school.

This week we wanted to take a look back at 2019.  We were busy around The Blind Pig Blog, and we are taking some time to reflect on all that we shared with you this past year.  We broke it down into two categories — Your Top Posts and Our Top Posts.  Take a scroll down the page with us as we reminisce.

Your Top Posts for 2019

Savannah Special

This wonderful concoction was dreamed up to celebrate Blind Piglet #1’s graduation from MIZZOU and into the big, big world to seek her fortune. It is a great large batch drink for any spring or summer soiree.

Italian Negroni

We brought this one to you because Negroni’s originated in Italia.  It is almost sacrilegious to create a Negroni without all Italian ingredients.  Enjoy this cocktail the way it was meant to be enjoyed.

Life Is Short Make It Sweet

This yummy Prosecco twist on traditional strawberry shortcake is a showstopper.  It is the perfect spring and summer dessert to serve.

Fall All Over

This yummy autumnal cocktail is simple and refreshing.  It is just right for when the cool Fall days start to hit.

Spiked Pecan Bars

We agree with you that these are delicious!  Every once-in-awhile a recipe really surprises you and we agree that this one hit it out of the park.

Our Top Posts for 2019

Day Drinking

This beverage has become our go-to drink when we just want something light and not too powerful.  We order it often at our local neighborhood restaurant, Spazo’s.

Espresso Ice Cream

How could we have a top ten list without a minimum of one ice cream recipe?  This ice cream is as smooth to make as it is to taste.

Reverse Manhattan

Just like the Italian Negroni we featured above, the Reverse Manhattan is a great way to experience a classic cocktail with a different twist.

Easy Espresso Cake

We sure featured a lot of espresso recipes on TBPB this year.  We don’t see that slowing down anytime soon. (Hint, hint) This cake is a winner no matter where you take it or who you serve it to.

The Moon Walk

Our history buff family could not let this opportunity slide without one more nod to the lunar landing.  Besides, it is a great cocktail too!

Stick around to see what great recipes and posts 2020 will bring!

 

Disclaimer:  Beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older.  We do not condone underage drinking.  Drink responsibly.

You Asked, We Answered

We love hearing from our readers through Facebook, Instagram and especially in person.  We have so much fun creating our blog posts and hope that you look forward to receiving them in your inbox each week.  This week we are taking a break from sharing more recipes with you to answer some commonly asked questions about The Blind Pig Blog.

  1.  What do you do with all of the drinks and food that you create for the blog?  That’s an easy answer… we drink and eat them.  Many of the drinks and recipes that we make for the blog have made it into our regular rotation.  We love to share the food we make on the blog with friends and family, so what are you doing next Friday?
  2. Does everything you make contain “The Blind Pig” twist?  No.  We make plenty of food and drinks on a daily basis that do not contain extra libations at all.  In fact, when we are not cooking things up for TBPBlog we try to eat fairly healthy.  Actually, Blind Piglet #2 prefers recipes that we make without a twist.
  3. Do all of the recipes and concoctions you make get featured on TBPBlog? No.  We try all of our recipes out at home before posting.  Many of the recipes we try get tweaked and adjusted before making it to the blog.  Some we try and nix altogether.  Some recipes we prepped, took photos, and then never made it into the queue.  We try to bring you relevant recipes with current trends and if we just don’t feel confident with a recipe, we don’t post it.
  4. Do you get paid to feature certain products on your blog?  Not currently.  Everything that we feature on our blog is because we believe in the quality of the product.  We like to feature products from smaller companies when we can.  When our blog grows up and we get the opportunity to be paid for a feature, we will be sure to be transparent about it with our readers.
  5. How do you decide what you want to blog about?  We think about what kind of entertaining our readers may be planning for in the near future.  If there is an upcoming holiday, we want to give you some ideas to serve your guests.  Throughout the year we are on the lookout for ideas to include in the blog.  Rhonda has a huge file of recipes that she has kept throughout the years.  When we need some inspiration we look through Rhonda’s files.  When we find something that interests us, we play with the recipe and tweak it to make it relevant and current.
  6. What is your favorite ingredient to use in TBPBlog posts?  For Rhonda it is Kerrygold Irish Cream.  The chocolate flavor makes it so easy to add to many dessert recipes, and we have been surprised how easy it is to incorporate into other things.
  7. What is your go-to drink when you are out and about?  Craig hands down loves to drink anything with Fernet Branca or Fernet and Coke.  He orders it everywhere we go.  Rhonda’s go-to drinks are usually a Templeton Rye and Ginger Beer (Maryann or Ginger) or a Correlajeo Skinny Agave Margarita.  It’s just easy to order and most bars are able to make it.
  8. Where is your favorite place to go out and have a drink?  Craig’s favorite place is Sable Kitchen and Bar in downtown Chicago at the Kimpton Hotel.  Rhonda’s favorite place is Village Burger Bar.  They have really good Corralejo Margaritas and I love their sweet potato fries.  Really she just loves anywhere with a great patio and fire pit.
  9. What have been your favorite posts?  Choosing a favorite post is a lot like choosing your favorite child. It’s difficult to pick just one. (Don’t tell, but Blind Piglet #3 is our fav.  Shhhh!) We do have a few favorites, though.  Some of the posts that are special to us are because of things that were going on in the background when we were prepping or taking photos.

Rhonda’s Favs:

  • Corralejo Skinny Agave Margarita:  This was our first official post and some of Rhonda’s girlfriends came over to help us kick off the post.
  • The Watermelon Wars:  Both of these drinks are delicious and it truly was a war between us to decide which recipe was better.
  • Mary Ann or Ginger:  To this day, this is still my go-to drink when out and about.
  • Golden Mint Crinkles:  This cookie recipe was a family favorite to begin with, and we were able to make it even better.
  • Salted Whiskey Caramel Corn:  We had a lot of activity in the house the weekend we made this post.  This post always makes me think of warmth, family, and home.  Not to mention all of the caramel corn was gone within two hours of the photo shoot.
  • Tequila Ceviche: We used this recipe all summer long.  It was so easy, tasty and fresh.
  • There are more, but we don’t want to bore you.

Craig’s favs:

Still have more questions?  Bring it on.  We would love to answer them!

Are you following us on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram?  If not, use the links below! Have an awesome week.  Next week we will be back with more yummy recipes for your taste buds and tummy with a February flair.  Love is in the air!

  

Disclaimer:  All beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older.  We do not condone underage drinking, and never drink and drive.

Snowed In?

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Let us just start by saying that we planned this post a few weeks ago.  At that time we had noooo idea that the Midwest would be under a winter storm warning.  Currently there is close to a foot of snow on the ground for many of our Midwest followers.  When we created this recipe and came up with the name, we did not realize that the universe was listening so closely.  We apologize.  However, we are sharing a delicious, chocolaty drink with you that we aptly named  Snowed In.  We felt that reflected the weather in much of the country for this time of year. (Yes, parts of Texas did receive some snow two weeks ago.) It has a little chocolaty goodness, a little bit of coffee and a lot of yum!

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There are three main ingredients in Snowed In: Crystal Head Vodka, Cafe Borghetti, and Kerrygold Irish Cream.  Put them together and shake with a little ice, and presto you have a fabulous cocktail to drink next to the warm fire.

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We used chocolate syrup, semi-sweet chocolate shavings and a few espresso beans for garnish.  We showed you our trick for garnishing with chocolate syrup last year when we made Who Needs Half Price Shakes Before 8?

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We’ve made this tasty little drink a couple of times now, and we think we like it more and more every time we make it.  It would be perfect to serve to guests as a dessert drink.  We would love to hear what you think!

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If you  are viewing this post via email, visit us at http://www.theblindpig.blog for a full printable recipe.

snowed in

The next time you are snowed in or not, shake up this cocktail to keep you warm on the inside as you cuddle up next to the fire with your honey.

  

Disclaimer:  Beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older.  We do not condone underage drinking, and never drink and drive.

 

Top Posts for 2018

Happy 2019!  We hope that you had a wonderful evening of ringing in the New Year.  Early January is always a great time to take stock of where we are headed and where we have been.  We took some time to look over our blog posts from 2018 and wanted to share with you the top ten most popular posts from The Blind Pig for the past year.  We hope that you enjoy looking back and maybe will try out a few of these top recipes in 2019.

Kerrygold Cinnamon Rolls

10.  Kerrygold Cinnamon Rolls

Our mouths start to water just looking at these photos and reflecting on the yummy goodness of these rolls.  This post holds a special place in out hearts, because Rhonda’s mom, Ruth, assisted us in this post.

tower of london guard

9.  London in 4 Days

What a wonderful blessing to visit Blind Piglet #1 while she was studying abroad in London.  It was a whirlwind trip, but well worth it!

grapefruit spritz

8.  Grapefruit Spritz

You have great taste!  We were pleased to see that the Grapefruit Spritz made it into the top ten.  It is such a yummy and refreshing cocktail, and writing this post was so much fun.

caramel rye pie

7.  Rye Rye Miss American Pie

Yes!  This dessert was a fabulous find.  It is definitely going to make it into our summertime dessert rotation.  It is delicious down to the last bite.

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6.  Do You Fondue?

This post was so much fun because of all of the activity in the background with the Piglets’ friends. As you can tell from the post, there wasn’t a drop left as soon as the photo shoot was over.

tickle me pink

5. Tickle Me Pink

This fun strawberry garnished rose’ sangria is the perfect cocktail for a ladies’ brunch or a bridal shower.  It’s as tasty as it is pretty.

golden mint crinkles

4. Golden Mint Crinkles

Our Golden Mint Crinkles kicked off the holiday baking season, which we could tell that many of you were ready to get started.  Thanks for all of the love and comments about this post.  We feel like we hit a “gold mine” with this recipe and post!

Christmas Morning Bread

3. Christmas Morning Bread

Wow!  The reception from this post was so much fun.  Thank you to all of you who reached out to let us know how much you liked it.  We made it again for our Christmas morning and it was just as delicious the second time.  If you follow Craig on facebook or instagram, you probably saw the pics.

Espresso Fudge

2. Espresso Your Love

This post was a lot of fun to make and shoot, because of this post we started adding in the month bonus posts.  Espresso Fudge is a very easy little treat to make anytime of year.  You don’t have to wait until Feb. 14.

holiday cheese spread

1.  Holiday Cheese Spread

Who knew?  We are glad you enjoyed this post about this quick holiday spread.  It is perfect for an easy take along appetizer or treat for any social gathering.

We look forward to sharing many great recipes and posts with you throughout 2019.  It brings us a great deal of joy to share our home, family and ideas with you.  We love to hear from our readers, and if you have a post idea for 2019, send it our way!

Make sure to share our posts with family and friends on facebook and twitter.  We always welcome more followers to our little tiny corner of the internet!

Best wishes for a healthy and prosperous new year!

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Disclaimer:  The beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older.  We do not condone underage drinking, and never drink and drive.

Italian Negroni

italian negroniHey friends, June 4th kicks off National Negroni week.   We have been saving our Italian Negroni just for this special occasion.  “Never tried a negroni,” you say.  If you are into classic cocktails, this week will be a real treat for you.

Negronis are said to have come about in Florence when an  Italian count suggested that the club soda in his Americano be replaced with gin. The key words in the above sentence are Italian and gin.  The negroni is an Italian creation.  Typically when most bartenders think of gin, they do not grab for an Italian gin.  To properly bring the negroni back to its original roots, we are pairing it with an all Italian cast.

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In our Italian Negroni we use 3 Italian liquors: Malfy Originale Gin (We told you about Malfy Limone in the Cucumber Gin Spritz.), Carpano Antica Vermouth (which we told you about in our Carpano Sangria recipe last summer), and Campari.  The Italian Negroni is a true classic cocktail with an aggressive taste profile.

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This recipe is so easy to make.  Pour 1 ounce of Malfi Gin, 1 ounce of Carpano Antica Vermouth, and 1 ounce of Campari into a rocks glass.  Garnish with an orange peel and ice.  We chose to use one of our ice spheres in our cocktail.

This cocktail is a great beverage to serve dads on Father’s Day, or for a guys’ night out.  Let us know if you try it out!

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Disclaimer:  The beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years of age and older.  We do not condone underage drinking, and never drink and drive.

Mother’s Day Brunch: Grapefruit Spritz

mother's day brunch3Hi friends!  It seems like we were just with you since we wrote the April Bonus post just a few short days ago.  What did you think about the Templeton Whiskey Cake?

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Mother’s Day is just a couple of weeks away which got us thinking about the perfect Mother’s Day Brunch.  Mimosas came to mind.  Don’t get us wrong, Rhonda loves a good mimosa, but they seem a little ordinary.  We are excited to share a new beverage recipe with you this week. Rhonda is kind of on a spritz kick right now. She had a delicious spritz in England when she went to visit Blind Piglet #1.  Then she came home and made The Cucumber Gin Spritz.  We had some of Seagram’s new Grapefruit Vodka in the house.  We were playing around with different recipes we could try with this citrusy liquor, and the Grapefruit Spritz was born.

grapefruit spritz

Now that you know the backstory, let’s get to the details.  We hear you already.  Not a grapefruit fan?  Is it the crazy cousin in the beloved citrus family?  No worries.  We aren’t huge grapefruit people either.  However, Seagram’s Grapefruit Vodka has just enough citrus taste to give this drink a light citrus flavor without overpowering the drink.  We pinky promise.

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This beverage hits the mark for easy, tasty and fresh.  The recipe is soooo easy that you will feel guilty when your mother brags on what a great job you did serving her Mother’s Day brunch. Of course the drink is tasty, we already told you that.  Fresh?  The citrus punch of the grapefruit coupled with an easy garnish of fresh grapefruit has fresh written all over it!

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If you are viewing this post in your email, click on the website to view a printable version of the recipe for Grapefruit Spritz.

We (Rhonda) served the Mother’s Day Brunch with a Zucchini Onion Frittata recipe she clipped from Southern Living years ago. (It’s a winner.) Frittata only sounds complicated.  Don’t forget that Kerrygold French Toast  or Kerrygold Cinnamon Rolls are also easy, tasty, fresh brunch recipes that will please and impress mothers from near and far.

zucchini onion frittata

Now your special brunch for the mothers in your life is covered. You are ready to impress and tell your mother/wife/Godmother how much she means to you.

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Happy early Mother’s Day to all of those wonderful mothers who have touched our lives in big and small ways.  We love you all.

theblindpig.blog

Disclaimer:  The beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years old and older.  We do not condone underage drinking.  Never drink and drive.

A Spritz of Spring

cucumber gin spritz

Hello friends!  We are enjoying Spring in full bloom.  Our flowers are blooming, the lawn is turning green, and our trees have bright  leaves and buds.  We know that some of our readers in the Midwest are longing for Spring, but they are still dealing with Winter.  This week’s light and fresh beverage will have you feeling like it’s Spring in no time.

You may notice that we are introducing a new spirit into our Blind Pig repertoire.  Our newest member is Malfy Gin.  This yummy spirit comes to us via the Amalfi Coast in Italy.  Malfy Gin is one of the only true Italian gins. Although most people think gin originated in England, its true beginnings were in Italy.  The Amalfi Coast is one our favorite spots to visit in the whole world.  We stayed in the village of Sorrento in an refurbished castle.  We had the most amazing pizza in Sorrento in a little outdoor cafe.  Our photos were from the pre-digitized photo generation, so we found this photo to help get you in the mood.

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The Cucumber Gin Spritz is a light, refreshing drink made with Malfy gin, prosecco and club soda.  The added crisp freshness of muddled cucumber and a cucumber ribbon around the circumference of the glass gives the drink a cooling and energizing zip.

 

Although the Cucumber Gin Spritz takes a little more effort than many of our other recipes, there is no need to worry. It’s not too difficult.

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To start, cut 5 round slices from the cucumber to muddle in your shaker.  Shave a long thin ribbon of the cucumber to save as a garnish for later.

If you don’t have any simple syrup on hand, you will want to make some of your own.  We gave you some recipes for simple syrup in our Mojito post.

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After muddling the cucumber, add 1 ounce of gin, 1/2 simple syrup and ice to the shaker.  Shake.  Strain the mixture into a serving glass. We used our bar strainer, but you may want to use a strainer with a thinner mesh.

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Top off with about 4 ounces of Prosecco and add a splash of club soda. Ahhhhhh!  So tasty!  So easy! So fresh!

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Cucumber Gin Spritz

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What do you think?  Are you ready to celebrate Spring on a patio with a refreshing Cucumber Gin Spritz?  Perhaps you should give it a try.

theblindpig.blog

 

 

Disclaimer:  The beverages on this site are meant for adults 21 years old and older.  We do not condone underage drinking.  Never drink and drive.