Tag Archives: What I Drank Wednesday

What I Drank Wednesday: Holiday Edition

Look at me, posting a WIDW two weeks in a row! This week’s theme is Holiday drinks, and includes beer, coffee, and tea. I’m a sucker for themed drinks, and like to try them all. A lot of times, though, I find that themed and overly marketed drinks are average at best. The ones below are the exception to my made up rule in that they are themed, and they’re good. We should probably start off with the good stuff (the beer) first, right?!

Harpoon’s Winter Warmer: I had this beer for the first time at the end of the season last year and loved it, so I knew that as soon as it became acceptable to talk about the Holidays, I had to get my hands on some. In simple terms, it tastes like the Holidays (cinnamon, nutmeg), but not in an overpowering way. It manages to be light, but also warm you up, as the name suggests. This is definitely the kind of beer you want to have on hand for Holiday get togethers! [Spiced Ale, 5.9% ABV]

Winter Warmer

This will warm you up!

Shiner’s Holiday Cheer: Despite having “Holiday” in the name, it’s far from what you would expect as a traditional Holiday beer (at least for me). When I think of Winter Holidays, I think of the spices found in the Winter Warmer. This brew, however, throws that logic out the window and instead you get the taste of peaches and pecans. It is so delightfully fruity and light, and reminds me a lot of Magic Hat’s #9. Despite the summery flavors, it definitely works as a Holiday beer, and I can just picture sipping it in Shiner, Texas (where it likely makes sense to have such a light and fruity beer for winter). [Dunkelweizen, 5.4% ABV]

Holiday Cheer

Peaches & pecans are needed in the snow

Southern Tier’s Creme Brûlée: Oh man. I should preface this by saying up until a few weeks ago, I was very much not a stout fan. I could drink a Guinness if it was given to me, but it was never my drink of choice. They were always just a little too heavy and bitter for me. But after finally trying Founder’s Breakfast Stout a few weeks ago while out after work, and really liking it, I decided it was about time to try more. So when Jenny suggested I give Southern Tier’s Creme Brûlée a try (with some dark chocolate), I made sure to pick it up when I went to the liquor store… and I got the last one! As soon as I opened the bottle I could smell the vanilla and caramel; it smelled like dessert. I was nervous to give it a try because I had such high hopes, and I wasn’t disappointed! It was so good. Not only could I smell the vanilla and caramel, but I could taste it. It’s a perfect “dessert beer,” or a beer to have when you want something a little heavier and sweet, rather than a light sweet beer (such as the Holiday Cheer above). [Imperial Milk Stout, 9.5% ABV]

Creme Brulee

Slowly becoming a stout lover

Starbucks Christmas Blend coffee: No more beer! Starbucks puts out this blend every year, and it’s really good. I actually love all of their seasonal blends (Thanksgiving, Holiday, Christmas, etc.), but this may be my favorite. Made up of beans from a bunch of different regions (South America and Indonesia), I enjoy it every morning, but find it also pairs well with desserts. It’s a darker roast, but isn’t overpowering, and smells fabulous.

Starbucks Christmas Blend

Jingle jingle

Celestial Seasonings’ Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride Tea: I had heard of this tea for a few years before actually trying it. I couldn’t  believe that there was actually a tea flavor that tasted like sugar cookies. When I finally tried it last year I was in shock; not only did it taste like sugar cookies, but it tastes like my favorite frosted cake-like sugar cookies (like the one pictured below)! Well, the people were right – it tastes like a sugar cookie. This is a perfect tea for when I’m craving something sweet but don’t have anything around. The smell is phenomenal, and I promise it tastes as good as it smells. It’s perfect for someone like me that will almost always choose coffee over tea, but actually wants tea every once in awhile.

Sugar cookie, sugar cookie tea. Both delicious.

Sugar cookie, sugar cookie tea. Both delicious.

I love taking advantage of different food and drink based on the season, and have been lucky enough to discover some really great ones.

Tell me…
Do you have any favorite Holiday themed drinks?
Any Holiday themed drinks I should try?

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What I Drank Wednesday: Budweiser Project 12

Disclaimer: I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Millennial Central for Budweiser. I received product samples to facilitate my review and a promotional item to thank me for participating.

Remember back when I did two “What I Drank Wednesday” posts and thought it would be great to continue doing them? Well obviously I failed at that part, but I’m back with my third installment today! This particular post is all about beer, and specifically, Budweiser’s Project 12 beers; Vanilla Bourbon Cask Batch 23185, North Pacific Lager Batch 94534, and Beechwood Bock Batch 43229.

What is Project 12, you may ask? Well, simply put it’s Budweiser’s innovation platform, where brewmasters have the opportunity to try new things and create new beers. Their Black Crown beer is actually a product of this project as well. These particular beers (mentioned above) are all named after the zip codes where they were brewed (Virginia, California, and Ohio)!

The beers!

The beers! Beechwood Bock, Vanilla Bourbon Cask, and North Pacific Lager

As mentioned above in the fun little FTC disclosure, I received these three beers to try at no cost to me on behalf of Millennial Central. I’ll be honest – I was really skeptical about new Budweiser beers. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a beer loving gal, but these days I gravitate towards beers with more complex and varied flavor profiles and I wasn’t sure if Budweiser would be able to deliver. If you are my friend on Untappd, you know what kind of beers I like (and subsequently don’t like).

I brought the beers with me to my parent’s house for a fun little tasting since my sister and her boyfriend were there for Thanksgiving. My sister isn’t much of a beer drinker but her boyfriend is, so I knew I could count on some good thoughts and opinions on the beers from him. I also thought it would be fun to get my parents to try them! So, what did we think of the beers? I decided to give each beer a rating out of 5, based on not only taste, but also what the taster’s notes mentioned (i.e., could I actually taste a hint of the chocolate it was brewed with?).

North Pacific Lager Batch 94534: This was your most “typical” beer tasting beer. Lagers are the types of beers that most people are familiar with (at least around here), so it definitely gets that “yup, this is a beer” taste recognition. It’s light and crisp, and would pair well with just about any food; especially if you’re having a dish on the heavier side, since this beer is rather light. I gave this beer a 3.5.

Vanilla Bourbon Cask Batch 23185: I was the most excited to try this beer, but liked it the least. It’s aged on bourbon barrel staves and vanilla beans, and you can definitely taste the vanilla. It’s a smooth amber lager, but left a bitter aftertaste, which was a little too much for me. My sister’s boyfriend, however, loved this beer. So obviously tastings are all relative! Obviously this beer would pair well with sweeter foods (bacon wrapped dates for my carnivore friends, perhaps). I gave this beer a 2.

Beechwood Bock Batch 43229: This was my favorite! Brewed with chocolate and caramel malts finished on beechwood chips, the beer had the most complex and palate friendly (for me) taste out of the three. In addition to sampling it with my parents, I also had it with a sweet potato chili earlier last week, and the pairing was spot-on. I actually think this would be a great beer to use in a chili! I gave this beer a 4.

Out of the three beers, as I mentioned, the Beechwood Bock was my favorite. I would definitely purchase it on my own and I’d also grab the North Pacific Lager for someone that likes a more traditional tasting beer. While the Vanilla Bourbon Cask was my least favorite, different beers appeal to different people, so I’m sure there are plenty of people that would really enjoy the flavors (my sister’s boyfriend included). I’ll definitely be on the lookout for these next time I head to the liquor store.

This was such a fun way to spend the Friday after Thanksgiving – sampling beers, noshing on appetizers, and just enjoying each other’s company (after an afternoon of shopping, of course)! The idea of doing a little “beer tasting” get together has really sparked my interest, and I’d love to do a beer & cheese night (think of wine and cheese, only in my opinion, better) with friends where everyone brings either their favorite, or a new beer to try. I definitely need to plan one of those for the future!

Tell me…
Are you a beer drinker? What’s your favorite? 

Again, the beer and promotional items were sent to me on behalf of Millennial Central, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. Additionally, I feel the need to mention that everyone who tasted the beers was over 21, of course. 

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What I Drank Wednesday

Since I had so much fun with my last What I Drank Wednesday post, I thought I would do it again! The blog is so heavily focused on food and running, that the liquid counterparts rarely get a chance to shine… and I figured Wednesday is just as good a day as any to share what I’ve been guzzling lately.

First up is 21st Amendment’s Hell or High Watermelon. I was extremely skeptical about this beer; I mean, a beer that tastes like watermelon? I’m not one to mess with beer flavors, and I naively assumed that this would be an abomination of the deliciousness that is a good brew.

Even the can is cool!

Even the can is cool!

I was pleasantly surprised by the beer when I ordered it a few weeks ago, and have found myself ordering it when available since then. It’s light, fun, and refreshing without having an overly watermelon flavor. It tastes like someone dropped a watermelon Jolly Rancher into a (decent) beer. This is definitely something you should try, but make sure it is really cold when you do. Obviously all beers are better when cold, but this one turns undrinkable quickly (more-so than a non flavored beer, I think).

Continuing the beer theme, another brew I recently tried and loved is Brooklyn Brewery’s Sorachi Ace. After a super hot run with Ashley, we headed to Stuff Yer Face for beers and bolis, and both decided to try this beer. I love going to Stuff Yer Face because they always have a good beer selection (both draft and bottle), and the food is good too.

Appropriate post run hydration, no?

Appropriate post run hydration, no?

This particular beer has a higher ABV (7.6%), so it was definitely a one and done type of drink, but it was delicious. It’s actually a special hop blend from Japan and it’s a classic saison, which I’ve come to realize I love. As I was looking over it’s “pairing” suggestions I saw that goat cheese was mentioned (which I am obsessed with), so it’s no surprise that I really enjoyed the beer.

Switching from beer to my other drink of choice, I recently started drinking cold brewed coffee. I actually received a cold brewing “system” for my birthday and tried it for the first time this week. It creates a “coffee concentrate” that you can then mix with water or milk to dilute and enjoy, which is perfect for me as someone that is obsessed with iced coffee. It’s nice to be able to pour my coffee over ice and not have the ice cubes immediately start to melt!

Toddy Cold Brew

The flavor is a little different from what you’re used to in terms of coffee, but I really like it. Plus, it makes a decent amount (since it’s a 1:3 ratio of coffee to milk or water) that stays fresh for up to two weeks – talk about easy!

And finally, while not interesting at all, I have been drinking a TON of water. It has been so incredibly hot recently, and combined with all the non-hydrating things I’ve been drinking as mentioned above, water is absolutely necessary. Back when I was swimming, one morning the Notre Dame women’s coach came to scout a few of my teammates at practice, and our coach asked her to share some words of wisdom with us. I don’t remember much of what she said, but I do remember one thing that I think of often; “If there’s yellow in your pee, that’s all the gold you’ll see,” meaning make sure you’re hydrated – if you aren’t, don’t expect to win! Obviously it’s just a fun little antidote, but it stuck with me and is an easy way to remember to keep hydrating. Of course I’m mixing Nuun into my water a lot as well, but I already talked about that last WIDW!

What are you drinking and loving lately?

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Inspired: What I Drank Wednesday

Last week, Ashley did a hilarious “What I Drank Wednesday” post. It was absolutely hilarious, and I thought to myself; ‘hey, this isn’t such a bad idea! Everyone always talks about what they eat, but what about drinks?!’ So, I figured it would be appropriate, given we just had Memorial Day Weekend, to share what I’ve been drinking lately. I’m by no means a big drinker (anymore), but I love craft beer.

Things started off on the right foot Friday when I got to leave work at 2pm. It was rainy and cold, so a stop at Wawa for coffee (and jalapeño bites, don’t judge) was necessary. Thinking of Hollie, I made sure to snap my #coffeeaday and add some of their Irish cream creamer, which is delicious and should be available everywhere.

Wawa coffee. It's good stuff.

Wawa coffee. It’s good stuff.

To further my weekend of drinking, a package of Nuun was waiting for me when I got home – citrus fruit, tropical, Kona cola, and lemon tea flavors! These were all new-to-met flavors and I couldn’t wait to try them… so I started with the cola during dinner, had the tropical after a run on Saturday, the lemon tea while lounging on Saturday evening, and the citrus after Sunday’s run. No surprise to me, I loved them all. I think my favorite was the tropical (it reminds me of something, but I can’t put my finger on what exactly), and the cola and tea flavors are impressively close to regular cola and tea (obviously watered down, since it’s mixed with water). Things got crazy on Monday when I made myself a cherry limeade and Kona cola slush!

Just a few new (to me) Nuun flavors to add to the collection!

Just a few new (to me) Nuun flavors to add to the collection!

I also picked up some of Starbucks’ new 3 Region blend, which admittedly first caught my eye because of the bright floral package. I was happy to see that it was a medium roast that boasted “floral, citrus, and herbal notes” that was a perfect companion to a sunny day. After my 8.5 miler on Sunday, I was more than happy to plop down on the couch with a cup while I watched the new season of Arrested Development on Netflix.

Coffee. Always coffee.

Coffee. Always coffee.

I suppose it wouldn’t be a Holiday weekend (or a weekend, or a regular day for that matter) without some beer. We’re a little low on inventory, so I made due with what we had in the fridge. Thankfully we only buy good beer, so I wasn’t disappointed in my choices. I had an Ithaca Beer Co. Flower Power IPA on Sunday evening, and a Flying Dog seasonal Woody Creek on Monday. I love me some good craft beers!

Ithaca Beer Co. Flower Power

Ithaca Beer Co. Flower Power

I’m currently headed to Punta Cana for a friend’s wedding this weekend, so I’m sure I will have even more drinks to share next week!

What have you been drinking lately? 

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