Ireland and England’s ‘best’ teas, reviewed by an American

Barry's is Ireland's finest cheap black tea in a bag. Folks seems awful fond of PG Tips and someone brought me a box. Read the rest

Review: Dasani Sparkling Bread Mold water

As a longtime fan of sparkling, zero-carb flavored water beverages, I thought I'd check out the new offerings from Dasani, whose own unsweetened slim-can drinks come in a range of popular flavors—and a lighter price tag than Perrier and La Croix.

I decided to try Dasani's Sparkling Bread Mold flavor first, and I must say that I'm delighted with the results.

Floral, moldy and yet delicately balanced, it only hints at a full taste of unseen mycobiomes, with crisp fungal notes hitting the nose moreso than the tongue. These mildew whispers gather to a full-throated sporal experience as the flavor settles in.

If at first it seems a slow way to acquire a taste for gulping clumps of algae in polluted lakes, or standing rainwater from brownfield reclamation sites, remember that the key to these fashionable sparkling waters is subtlety, a careful naturalism that's hard to crack without the crutches of sugar or lead-acid battery slime.

Complex notes of penicillin and petrichor are augmented by tertiary aromas of flower petals and basement dust, leading to a satisfying, sustained mildew finish.

All in all, I can't recommend Dasani Sparkling Bread Mold water enough, especially to fans of organic matter that has putrefied then dried out to leave only a vaguely acrid scent of death.

Garnish with an old crouton and enjoy over ice on an oppressively humid day, in a swamp-cooled shed with wet carpet.

Note: Oddly, the cans I tested were subject to a misprint whereby each was stamped "Raspberry Lemonade" instead of "Bread Mold." This had no effect on the flavor whatsoever. Read the rest

Budweiser renames its beer "America"

Fast Company looks into Budweiser's patriotic salute to the upcoming presidential election.

The alterations don’t stop with the beer’s name. Almost every bit of type on the Budweiser label has been scrubbed away by Easter Egg patriotism, with new text citing the Pledge of Allegiance, the Star Spangled Banner, and America the Beautiful—all rendered in newly developed hand lettering, inspired by Budweiser’s archives.

To name just a few of the updates: "King of Beers" has been changed to "E Pluribus Unum," "The World Renowned" changed to "Land of the Free," and "Anheuser-Busch, Inc." updated to read "Liberty & Justice For All."

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Kids getting wasted on hand sanitizer (still)

American children are "getting drunk off hand sanitizer like they never have before," reports Vice. Read the rest

I have journeyed to the soul of chocolate and I bring you good tidings

Cold brewed coffee is a revelation of complex, bittersweet, intense flavor. Cold-brewed chocolate? Even better. (Holy. Crap.)

Microscope photographs of alcohol drinks

Smithsonian writes about BevShots, a company that sells microscope photographs of the crystallized form of alcoholic beverages, like tequila, above, and white wine and scotch, seen below. Read the rest

Most expensive, caffeinated Starbucks drink ever

Andrew Chifari of Dallas, Texas used the free drink earned with his Starbucks Rewards card to get a $54.75 frappuccino containing 60 shots of espresso. He drank a third of it right then and the rest over a few more days. From Daily Zone:

"This particular customization was certainly excessive. It's something that we don't encourage," said spokeswoman Maggie Jantzen.

Starbucks did not say whether it would revise its free-drink policies in response to Chifari's order.

The coffee monstrosity is now recognized as the current record holder of the most expensive Starbucks drink by Caffeine Informer, an Internet site that keeps track of the coffee industry.

Caffeine Informer estimates the drink had 4,500 mg of caffeine, more than 10 times above what the U.S. Food and Drug Administration considers to be a maximum safe amount for a healthy person to drink on a daily basis.

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Pumpkin Tap turns pumpkin or watermelon into keg

The Pumpkin Tap turns hollowed-out pumpkins and watermelons into drink dispensers! I think most any beer faucet and shank would work, but this is a fun idea. Read the rest

The water sommelier of Los Angeles

Martin Riese is the water sommelier at Ray's and Stark Bar at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Yes, you read right. Don't miss reading the full tasting menu (PDF). More at (Thanks, Bob Pescovitz!) Read the rest

Boozy ice-cream man banned

The operator of an ice-cream van in south London was removed from his sweet beat after being charged with driving drunk. Parents concerned about the smell of alcohol summoned police, who found him to be over twice the legal driving limit. While this remains "relatively low" by British drunken-driving standards, the judge said that the nature of his vehicle was a "serious aggravating factor," and issued a 20-month driving ban. Read the rest

Buzz Aldrin speaks out against Tang

According to Buzz Aldrin though, "Tang sucks." (NBC News) Read the rest

Entire fridgeful of drinks destroyed after poison scare

A San Jose woman was arrested Monday over allegations that she spiked bottles of Starbucks' orange juice with rubbing alcohol. Read the rest

World noticing US microbreweries

"Once widely mocked, US beer is now popular globally", writes the BBC's Jon Kelly. "Why is the world buying in to the American brewing revolution?" Read the rest

Cyberpunk juice, 1984

I remember this stuff! Imagine carbonated denatured pruno and you about have it. Read the rest

Girl's stomach removed after liquid nitrogen cocktail drunk

The BBC's Amy Gladwell: "As the frozen vapour hits the stomach it rapidly warms, releasing large volumes of air which can burst the stomach. Doctors performed emergency surgery to remove Gaby Scanlon's stomach, an operation known as a total gastrectomy" Read the rest

Russian soft-drinks explained: tastes like forests, rye bread, licorice, bubblegum

On Metafilter, Deathalicious rounds up links to some of the more interesting drinks mentioned in two videos by YouTube user 513755, explaining the various uniquely regional Russian and ex-Soviet soft-drinks.

A few of the drinks mentioned, with tasting notes: Kvass - a strong sweet/sour beverage, with a definite flavor of rye bread. Tarkhun - very pronounced herbal flavor, delicately tart. Unmistakable tarragon flavor (close to anise/licorice but "greener"). Baikal - tastes like a forest. Really. Strong evergreen and pine sap notes. Buratino [link goes to origin of the name] - golden bubblegum soda. [Bonus NSFW Buratino Weirdness]

Russian Soft Drinks

(Image: Tapxyh.jpg, Wikimedia Commons/Yy-bo) Read the rest