November 25, 2013
Last week we talked about the unusual convergence of Thanksgiving and Chanukah. This week we’re going to talk wine (and Metrokane wine tools and accessories, natch!).
Choosing wines for Thanksgiving courses and flavors—from salty stuffing to spicy pumpkin pie and everything in between—is never easy. And when you figure in the potato latkas for Chanukah it makes it even more challenging (food bloggers have been running amok, calling it Thanksgivukkah and suggesting cross-cultural recipes like turkey brined in Manischewitz with challah stuffing and sweet potato latkes).
The one thing that does remain constant (and much simpler than the final wine selection!) is how you’ll open, serve and preserve whatever it is that you’re drinking. To open the wine—and perhaps try a sparkling wine this year—pull out your Rabbit Electra Wine Tool Kit ($50) the combines a premium Electric Corkscrew with a polished chrome Foil Cutter and the Rabbit Wine Preserving Stopper.
If sparkling wines aren’t to your taste, give the Rabbit Aerating Decanter System a try ($60) http://www.metrokane.com/product/47/rabbit-aerating-decanter-system.aspx) with a bottle of red (Pinot Noir, Syrah and Zinfandel are all good choices). This innovative gadget breaks red wine down into tiny droplets that spray down the side of the decanter, instantly picking up oxygen that enhances both flavor and aroma. The Super-Aerating system includes a hand-blown crystal decanter, crystal glass wine-spray funnel and super-fine sediment screen. Allowing wine time to “breathe” is now a thing of the past.
For white wines, the Rabbit Wine-Chilling Carafe ($50) http://www.metrokane.com/product/88/rabbit-wine-chilling-carafe.aspx is the perfect way to keep white wines chilled while the candles are lit. (No plastic ice chamber! No freezable chemicals!). It’s a more effective chilling carafe because the stainless ice chamber is a highly efficient cold-transfer material, far superior to glass or plastic.
There probably won't be much wine left (but hopefully enough food for left-overs) so we won't talk about preserving until a later post.
However (and whatever!) you celebrate, there’s nothing better than family, food and good wine. We at Metrokane wish you a happy and healthy holiday season.
November 13, 2013
The talk around the water-cooler this year (even the virtual ones!) is how late Thanksgiving falls, and how early Chanukah (there’s actually an overlap of two days!).
According to Chabad.org (http://www.chabad.org/holidays/chanukah/article_cdo/aid/2343364/jewish/Chanukah-and-Thanksgiving-A-Brief-History.htm), “Chanukah was declared a Jewish national holiday 2178 years ago. Thanksgiving was declared a national American holiday on the last Thursday of every November by Abraham Lincoln in 1863. Before then, Thanksgiving was celebrated on different dates in different states, so we won’t count those. But, using the Chabad.org Date Converter, you will see that Thanksgiving coincided with the first day of Chanukah on November 29, 1888. It also coincided with the fifth day of Chanukah on November 30, 1899.
On November 28, 1918, Thanksgiving was on Chanukah eve. But since it’s still Thanksgiving until midnight, and Jewish days begin at night, that would still mean that Jewish Americans would have eaten their turkeys that Thanksgiving to the light of their first Chanukah candle.
It gets more complicated. Originally, Thanksgiving was always on the last Thursday of November. In 1939, FDR decided it would be good for the economy to push Thanksgiving back a little, so he declared the fourth Thursday of that November to be Thanksgiving—even though there were five Thursdays to November that year. In 1942, that became federal law. But not all states went along with it. As late as 1956, Texas was still celebrating Thanksgiving a week later than the rest of the country.”
So now that we’ve cleared that up a bit, next week we’ll talk about what wine to drink for each holiday.
October 25, 2013
Oh Baby its Cold Outside
The summer is all about casual: poolside picnics, family BBQ’s, cocktails and wine coolers. But the colder weather (and what qualifies as “colder” is definitely a matter of preference) seems to bring out the more buttoned up in all of us.
Pool parties give way to dinner parties and wine coolers give way to…well, just wine.
Gregory Cartier of AskMen (http://www.askmen.com/fine_living/wine_dine_archive_100/100_wine_dine.html) put it best: “Seasons change, and when they do, so do the wines we drink. Unless you live in a climate like Arizona or Hawaii, where your concept of winter is nonexistent in comparison to someone in Vermont, for example, your selection of wines probably changes when the mercury drops. If that is not the case, you should consider the climate and season next time you choose a wine for dinner.”
“The idea of "winter wines" is not so much about specific vintages being appropriate in one season and unacceptable in another. Rather, it is about which characteristics of certain wines not only match well with the season, but more importantly, with the foods we associate with the season.”
“In the heat of summer, I doubt you eat a lot of thick, hearty soups or stews, or roasts for that matter. Winter is the traditional time to eat these dishes, given the need to warm up when the temperature dips and to get some meat on your bones.”
One thing that shouldn’t change, however, are the accessories you use for opening, serving and preserving your wine. And so it should go without saying that you should pick up the new Rabbit Electra Wine Tool Kit ($50)—one for yourself and a couple for gifts. The set combines a premium Electric Corkscrew with a polished chrome Foil Cutter and the Rabbit Wine Preserving Stopper. They are all displayed and stored in a sensational Lucite presentation case (kind of like an upscale Swiss Army Kit for wine drinkers).
So put on an extra sweater, a couple of wine glasses and grab a bottle or two of red. Just because the temperature has dropped doesn’t mean its time to stop celebrating!
October 9, 2013
On the east coast we had a relatively late Indian summer and its finally starting to feel like Fall. In our house that means switching the screen doors for the storm ones, making sure the generator still works and laying in some new wine (just in case we get snowed in).
According to the calendar, the next holiday is Columbus Day—commemorating the anniversary of Christopher Columbus’ arrival in the Americas on October 12th, 1492. According to Wikipedia, it became a federal holiday in 1937. In 1892, President Benjamin Harrison called upon the people of the United States to celebrate Columbus Day on the 400th anniversary of the event when teachers, preachers, poets and politicians used Columbus Day rituals to teach ideals of patriotism (for those out there counting, this year will mark the 521st anniversary…boy, does time fly!).
Since 1970, the Columbus Day has been fixed to the second Monday in October and is generally observed by banks, the bond market, the US Postal Service and other federal agencies, most state government offices, many businesses, and most school districts.
So let’s raise a glass of wine, on this 521st anniversary (opened via the battery-powered Rabbit Electric Wine Preserver (http://www.metrokane.com/product/113/new-rabbit-electric-wine-preserver.aspx ) and the Rabbit Aerating Pourer (http://www.metrokane.com/product/2/rabbit-aerating-pourer.aspx) and toast to Columbus’ successful journey!
September 24, 2013
Fall is the time for change. The kids go back-to-school, the leaves start to turn and--most importantly for wine lovers--it's "Crush Season", aka one of the most crucial steps in the process of winemaking. The period culminating in the crush (in the Northern Hemisphere) begins when the grapes start to change color in mid-to-late summer, with the actual the harvest season typically falling between August & October.
Thanks to Metrokane, you can pay attention to the timing of the "Crush Season" and leave it to us to worry about the details of opening, serving and preserving the wine.
What's new for fall at Metrokane?
Start with the new Rabbit Wine Preserving Stoppers (http://www.metrokane.com/product/104/new-rabbit-wine-preserving-stopper.aspx ), small but effective vacuum pumps (in chic black or red) that also serve as an attractive stopper ($10.00).
Or, for those who prefer high-tech, there's the battery-powered Rabbit Electric Wine Preserver (+ two stoppers!) http://www.metrokane.com/product/113/new-rabbit-electric-wine-preserver.aspx, a faster, easier and more effective way to preserve red wine ($39.99). A vacuum (strong enough to give you a hand hickey!) preserves the wine's flavor in 10 to 15 seconds and preserves the bouquet for a week or more.
Next there's the Rabbit Bottleneck Gift Collection, http://www.metrokane.com/product/109/new-rabbit-bottle-stopper-bottleneck.aspx a great way to include a Rabbit--from Bottle stoppers ($4.99), Flipper Pourer/Stoppers ($7.99), Bottle Toppers ($4.99) or a Zippity Waiter's Corkscrew ($9.99) to bump up a bottle of wine or champagne (the little devils are ingeniously packaged to loop around the bottle top).
And finally, if design is your thing, you'll want to check out Rabbit's Space Saving Wine Rack (included MOMA's collection) http://www.metrokane.com/product/102/rabbit-space-saving-wine-rack.aspx which fits into a fridge, providing cool storage for white wine. Crafted of high-tensile-strength steel and structural plastic, it's the perfect solution to convenient wine storage. And for only $20 bucks, you'll be able to snag one for yourself.
September 12, 2013
The kids are back-to-school, casual Fridays are done and your tan lines are fading (I know it’s bad, I just can’t help myself!).
If you’re Jewish, you have the holidays coming up (so early this year!) and if you’re not you just have to wonder why the heck they’re putting out the Halloween candy so early (it’s only September!).
Either way, the start of a new season is often the time to reflect on what’s past and what’s ahead. I don’t know about you, but I do my reflecting best at home, with a glass of red wine (how to open the bottle? You should know by now, using the original, award winning Rabbit Corkscrew ($50), which works on all bottle sizes and pulls a cork in 3 seconds flat).
Next I affix my Rabbit Aerating Pourer ($30.00; http://www.metrokane.com/product/2/rabbit-aerating-pourer.aspx) to the wine bottle (no need for a decanter or separate aerator). When I pour the wine I can see and hear aeration happening (it’s almost hypnotic!).
As the leaves begin turn and the wine bottle begins to empty, I give thanks for my husband, my kids, my family and my health…and to Metrokane, for making it so easy to relax and enjoy the wine!
August 28, 2013
So Long, Summer
As it always seems to, summer has gone especially fast this year, from Memorial Day to Labor Day in less than the time it takes to pull a cork from a bottle of rose.
While Labor Day follows a familiar pattern of mall sales, backyard BBQ’s and heavy traffic coming home from the beaches, it too—like Memorial Day and July 4th before it—had a more illustrious beginning.
Labor Day is a US federal holiday, observed on the first Monday in September. It celebrates the economic and social contributions of workers and was first nationally recognized in 1894 to placate unionists following the Pullman Strike, during which workers died at the hands of the US military and US Marshals (President Grover Cleveland signed it into law a mere six days after the strike was settled).
The initial celebration was outlined in the first proposal of the Labor Day holiday: A street parade to exhibit to the public "the strength and spirit de corps of the trade and labor organizations", followed by a festival for the workers and their families. This became the pattern for Labor Day celebrations. Speeches by prominent men and women were introduced later, as more emphasis was placed upon the civil significance of the holiday. Still later, by a resolution of the American Federation of Labor convention of 1909, the Sunday preceding Labor Day was adopted as Labor Sunday and dedicated to the spiritual and educational aspects of the Selector movement.
How far we’ve come. These days, more than anything, Labor Day weekend marks the official end to summer and (here in the east, anyway) the start of school. It may also mark the last time this year you’ll use your Rabbit Wine Trek (http://www.metrokane.com/product/92/rabbit-wine-trek.aspx) to tote a bottle of chilled wine to a neighbor’s pool party or your Rabbit Wine-Chilling Carafe (http://www.metrokane.com/product/88/rabbit-wine-chilling-carafe.aspx) to keep things cool in the sweltering days of summer.
So gather your friends and family for one last summer blow-out, grab your Rabbit Electric Cocktail Mixer (http://www.metrokane.com/product/93/rabbit-electric-cocktail-mixer.aspx ) and whip up a batch of Sweet & Spicy Margarita’s (http://chilledmagazine.com/Whats_Chilling_Right_Now-detail/labor-day-cocktail-line-up/ ). Come Tuesday, it’s time to say hello to fall!
1 part Chocolate Chili Liqueur
2 parts Tequila
2 parts Fresh Lemon Sour
1 part Fresh Lime Juice
Preparation: Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass over ice and shake.
Strain into a margarita glass with ice.
Revised from Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Labor_Day)
August 12, 2013
Dear Ms. Metrokane,
I live in a very small apartment with a husband, two kids, three cats, two dogs and a hamster. Both my husband and I are wine afficiantos—we love white in particular—and when we spot a great deal we tend to buy bottles in multiples. Thing is, I just can’t find the space for one more bottle, let alone room in my fridge. We were thinking of getting rid of the hamster, but my eight-year old won’t hear of it. Any suggestions?
-- From No More Room at the Inn
Dear Miss No Room,
Yes! You must get a Rabbit Space-Saver Wine Rack (http://www.metrokane.com/product/102/rabbit-space-saving-wine-rack.aspx ), the most compact wine storage system ever designed (there’s even one in the Museum of Modern Art’s collection!). Crafted of high-tensile-strength steel and structural plastic, it holds 6 bottles and folds up flat. It's the perfect solution to convenient wine storage in a small space. You can even fill it with bottles and pop it into the refrigerator! So tell your eight-year old that the hamster is safe. And for the $20 the Rabbit Wine Rack costs, you can even buy two!
July 4, 2013
The Dog Days of Summer
July 4th marked the unofficial halfway point of the summer (that, and all the back-to-school commercials appearing on TV).
All that’s left to do is plan as many beach weekends and backyard BBQ’s as possible (and don’t forget to slather on the sunscreen!).
As always, Metrokane has you covered, whether your plans include cocktails by the pool or a reunion with friends and family. Rabbit Wine Trek
(http://www.metrokane.com/product/92/rabbit-wine-trek.aspx) will ensure you get the goods where you’re going, chilled (if you’re able, check it out on July 30th on The Talk). The Rabbit Pocket Corkscrew
—a patented invention with all the features of the Rabbit Self-Pulling Corkscrew—stores safely in your pocket (http://www.metrokane.com/product/16/rabbit-pocket-corkscrew.aspx ) to make sure you’re prepared for whatever comes up.
Heat a problem? Not for Metrokane. From our Rabbit wine-chilling carafe
http://www.metrokane.com/product/88/rabbit-wine-chilling-carafe.aspx , (which features a stainless ice chamber, far superior to glass or plastic) to our new Wine Chillers
(insulated with Neoprene, used in divers’ “wet suits”), we help keep you and your beverages cool.
Vive la summer!
July 4th – Independence Day
Interestingly enough, July 4 is the 185th day of the year (186th in leap years), marking 180 days remaining until New Year's Day. Here in the US, it is also known as Independence Day, celebrated as a federal holiday marking the adoption of the Declaration of Independence in 1776, declaring independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain.
Independence Day is usually celebrated with fireworks, parades, pool-side barbecues and the like and the red white and blue theme often extends to what people are drinking.
The following recipes can be mixed up with the Rabbit’s electric cocktail mixer ($20).
Blue Hawaiian (from the website http://mixthatdrink.com/blue-hawaiian/)
◦ 1 ounce Blue Curacao
◦ 1 ounce white rum
◦ 3 ounces pineapple juice
◦ 1 ounce sweetened coconut cream
Put the ingredients and the ice into your Rabbit Electric Cocktail Mixer and celebrate!
◦ 1 ounce Baileys Irish Cream with a Hint of Caramel
◦ ½ ounce Zacapa rum
◦ ¼ ounce allspice dram
◦ 1 ounce iced coffee
◦ 1 cinnamon stick
Add Baileys Irish Cream, Zacapa rum, allspice dram, and iced coffee into a Rabbit Electric Cocktail Mixer full of ice and let her rip! Strain over fresh ice into a rocks glass. Garnish with a cinnamon stick.
Red, White, and B-Lucid Punch (from http://www.drinkoftheweek.com/drink_recipes/independence-on-ice/#axzz2XXDoPeFC )
This punch packs…. well, a punch! Absinthe, Gin, fresh berries, ginger and OJ. Not exactly Apple Pie, but maybe we could start a new tradition.
1 oz Lucid Absinthe
1 oz gin
2 strawberries, 2 blackberries
1/2 oz. Ginger Syrup
3/4 oz. Fresh Orange Juice
Muddle the berries in the ginger syrup and orange juice. Add remaining ingredients and add to the Rabbit Electric Cocktail Mixer. Strain over ice.
Garnish with sliced strawberries and blackberries.
No matter how you choose to celebrate, have a happy 4th!
May 20, 2013
Memorial Day weekend is right around the corner, and for many Americans it simply marks the official three-day weekend start of summer and a great time to shop for bargains. It didn’t start that way.
Memorial Day is a US federal holiday that is celebrated on the final Monday of May. It was created as a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving in the US Armed Forces. Formerly known as Decoration Day, it originated after the American Civil War to commemorate the Union and Confederate soldiers who died. By the 20th century, Memorial Day had been extended to honor all Americans who have died while in the military service. And while many people do honor those who have fought and died, most throng to backyard BBQ’s and beaches, which is where Metrokane comes in.
If it’s a hot weekend (we can only hope!) and the party isn’t at your house, tote your wine with the Rabbit Wine Trek
. It comes with a Chiller Wrap that is ready to use after 30 minutes in the freezer and keeps red wine cool and drinkable too.
When you get to the party, serve your wine with the innovative Rabbit wine-chilling carafe ($50)
, which uses no plastic ice chamber or freezable chemicals (the stainless ice chamber is a highly efficient cold-transfer material, far superior to glass or plastic).
Prefer a summer cocktail? Shake it up with the Rabbit Electric Cocktail mixer ($20)
, kick back and enjoy.
PS Don’t forget the sunscreen!
May 14, 2013
According to the Wine Institute
, wine consumption is up to roughly 856 million gallons in 2012, from 836 million gallons in 2011. That's an increase of 20 million gallons.
How are you going to open, serve and preserve all that wine? If you wanted to, you could probably open a wine bottle with a five dollar waiter corkscrew and plug it up with the very cork you removed. But why should you when there are so many cool products available?
Try the Original Rabbit Corkscrew
($50), which pulls a cork in 3 seconds flat, then automatically releases it (try doing that with a waiter's corkscrew!) . Its user-friendly ergonomic design opens any size wine bottle while looking downright cool.
Serve your wine with the innovative Rabbit wine-chilling carafe
($50), which uses no plastic ice chamber or freezable chemicals (the stainless ice chamber is a highly efficient cold-transfer material, far superior to glass or plastic).
And finally, preserve the wine with a Wine Preserver Vacuum Pump with 2 Stoppers ($14)
, which removes air from an opened bottle of wine. This preserves the wines taste until the bottle is re-opened.
Fact is, Americans are drinking--and appreciating--more wine than ever before. And with the full range of Metrokane wine and barware accessories they can now do it in style.
April 29, 2013
was first celebrated in 1908, when Anna Jarvis held a memorial for her mother in Grafton, West Virginia. She then began a campaign to make "Mother's Day" a recognized holiday in the United States. Although she was successful in 1914, she was already disappointed with its commercialization by the 1920s.
Jarvis' holiday was adopted by other countries and it is now celebrated all over the world, most commonly in March or May. In this tradition, each person offers a gift, card, or remembrance toward their mothers, grandmothers, and/or maternal figure.
The most popular gift, at least in my house, are flowers and candy. But if you really want to wow mom (she always did love you best!), why not pick her up a totally awesome gift from Metrokane?
For the mom who enjoys her cocktails (even if it’s just on the weekends), there is the Rabbit Electric Cocktail mixer ($20)
.For the mom who is more of a wine connoisseur, you can start with the Electric Rabbit Wine Opener ($50)
. And why not ask dad to pitch in and get the Rabbit Aerating Decanter System too? ($60)
Of course flowers and candy still work. Just remember to throw in the Rabbit Flipper Pourer/Stoppers ($8.00)
. They’re cute little air-tight wine stoppers and drip-free pourers too!
April 29, 2013
Summer is a season of pool parties, house parties and dinner parties. And if there’s one thing that you need more than a good sunscreen, it’s a go-to list of hostess gifts. From expensive to not-so-expensive, Metrokane has you covered.
Following find a list below to insure that you never arrive empty-handed.
Rabbit Flipper Pourer/Stoppers ($8.00)
It’s an air-tight wine stopper (flip to close). It’s a drip-free pourer (flip to open).
*Package comes in a set of 2 assorted colors
Wine Preserver Vacuum Pump with 2 Stoppers ($14.00)
The Wine Preserver is a pump-and-stopper vacuum system that removes air from an opened bottle of wine. This preserves the wines taste until the bottle is re-opened.
Rabbit Electric Cocktail Mixer ($20.00)
Mixing cocktails is more fun than ever with the Rabbit Electric Cocktail Mixer. Measure the ingredients of your favorite cocktail into the Mixer, add ice, and press the start button. Enjoy the mixing show, then pour chilled, delicious cocktails.
Rabbit 4 Piece Tool Kit ($25.00)
Includes all the tools needed to open, serve and store wine: Rabbit Self-Pulling Corkscrew, Foil Cutter, Pourer with Stopper and Wine/Champagne Sealer.
Rabbit Wine Trek ($30.00)
Wine Trek comes with a Chiller Wrap that is ready to use after 30 minutes in the freezer. It keeps red wine cool and drinkable too—the first-ever carrier that keeps wine and champagne cool as you “keep on trekking".
Rabbit Wine Chilling Carafe ($50.00)
The Rabbit Wine-Chilling Carafe keeps wine chilled the natural way. (No plastic ice chamber! No freezable chemicals!) It’s a more effective chilling carafe because the stainless ice chamber is a highly efficient cold-transfer material, far superior to glass or plastic.
April 22, 2013
Let’s face it; the world of wine and bar accessories can be pretty daunting. To make it easier, we’re launching a new Q&A that will appear semi-regularly called “Ask Ms. Metrokane”.
Please feel free send us all your wine and bar accessory related questions and we’ll do our best to answer them.
Dear Ms. Metrokane,
I was hoping that you’d be able to help me. I met a man at a party the other night and we were super attracted to each other. Except for the fact that he kept twirling his glass of red wine! Now I know that this is probably considered chic and sophisticated in some circles, but to me it just looked kind of pretentious. Should I tell the guy that I’m just not interested? Or can you suggest something?
—From Miss I Hate Twirling
Dear Miss I Hate Twirling,
No need to dump the lad! Just get him a Rabbit Aerating Pourer
! At just $30 its not too much of an investment. This way your guy won’t need a decanter or a separate aerator (so awkward to hold above the glass as you pour). Simply insert the Rabbit Aerating Pourer into a wine bottle as you would a conventional pourer. When you pour the wine, you see and hear aeration happening. When he tastes it, he’ll you enjoy the enhanced flavor and bouquet of perfectly aerated red wine and he’ll look at you with love in his eyes!
If you’re not yet sure he’s worth the investment, try the Rabbit Swish On-Glass Aerator
priced at just $20.00. All you do is place the Rabbit Swish Aerator on a wine glass and pour red wine through it. You create a “wine shower” right in the glass to soften the wine, improve its taste and enhance its bouquet. The Rabbit Swish also has a fine-mesh screen that removes sediment that may settle in fine wines. So tell him to forget the twirling! Every red wine tastes better when you “swish it.”
April 9, 2013
Tax Day—Need We Say More
In the United States, Tax Day
is a colloquial term for the day on which individual income tax returns are due to the federal government. The term may also refer to the same day for states, even where the tax return due date is a different day. And although, to our knowledge, there has never been a survey done to prove it, we would venture to guess that Tax Day is also a top cause for drinking (which is where we come in).
Federal income tax was introduced with the Revenue Act of 1861 to help fund the Civil War, and subsequently repealed, re-adopted, and held unconstitutional. The early taxes were based on assessments, not voluntary tax returns. Tax payment dates varied by act.
The case of Pollock v. Farmers’ Loan & Trust Co. challenged the constitutionality of the Wilson-Gorman Tariff Act of 1894 which taxed incomes over $4,000 at the rate of two percent. The case was decided by the US Supreme Court in 1895. The Supreme Court decided that the Act's unapportioned income taxes on interest, dividends, and rents were effectively Direct taxes. The Act was therefore unconstitutional because it violated the Constitution’s rule that direct taxes be apportioned. In 1913, eighteen years later, the 16th Amendment to the US Constitution was ratified, giving the US Congress the legal authority to tax all incomes without regard to the apportionment requirement.
The filing deadline for individuals was March 1 in 1913 and was changed to March 15 in 1918 and again to April 15 in 1955. Today, the filing deadline for U.S. federal income tax returns for individuals remains April 15 or, in the event that the 15th falls on a Saturday, Sunday or holiday, the first succeeding day that is not a Saturday, Sunday or holiday.
But enough about taxes; let’s talk more about drinking!
Two years ago, the website Kitchen Riffs
wrote about The Income Tax Cocktail, which believe it or not is a classic, although with obscure origins. Legend has it that the ITC probably began as a variation on the Bronx cocktail (it’s the same recipe, but with the addition of Angostura bitters). The Bronx was extremely popular in the pre-Prohibition era, although some of the more hardcore drinkers considered it “weak” because it contained orange juice.
Speaking of orange juice, try to use fresh squeezed (easy with the Rabbit Citrus Juicer
!), not the pre-made stuff, when you mix an Income Tax (or Bronx) cocktail. It really makes a difference.
The recipe below yields one drink, although depending on how much you owe the IRS, you might want to fill your Rabbit Electric Cocktail Mixer
to the top and make several.
March 25, 2013
GET YOUR EASTER ON!
Nothing says “rabbit” like Easter, and while most people don’t put bunny on their menus, there is the conundrum of what wines to imbibe with the more traditional roasted ham or a leg of lamb.
Wines for Easter
Let’s start with the ham. Ham is often prepared with glazes or toppings that are sweet and can balance the inherent saltiness of the actual meat. Well paired wines can accomplish the same objective. For ham, the best "tried and true" companion wines are, hands-down – a Riesling or a Gewurztraminer. Both wines tend to offer fresh, flavorful taste profiles with enough sweet fruit to balance the salt in the ham and enough acidity to support the combination without compromising the flavor in either the ham or the wine.
Use your handy-dandy Rabbit Electra
to open a bottle or two, and to keep the wine cool while the kids hunt for Easter eggs, look no further than Rabbit Wine Chilling Carafe
If red wine is your first choice, then a Zinfandel is a perfect pick, as the higher alcohol content and fruit forward approach can handle the ham's sweeter side.
You can still use your Rabbit Electra opener, but give the Rabbit Aerating Decanter System
a try. This innovative gorgeous gadget breaks red wine down into tiny droplets that spray down the side of the decanter, instantly picking up oxygen that enhances both flavor and aroma. The Super-Aerating system includes a hand-blown crystal decanter, crystal glass wine-spray funnel and super-fine sediment screen. Allowing wine time to “breathe” is now a thing of the past.
Not having ham for Easter? No problem. The trick with lamb—whether rack, leg or roast—is “to stick with your well grounded red wines - a red Burgundy, a northern Rhone red, a Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Merlot or a Tempranillo or Shiraz. You are shooting for red wines with decent tannin structure, good fruit and a finish that can endure as long as the lamb itself. The goal is to have a wine with enough fruit and acidity to handle the robust flavors of the lamb, but not overpower it in the process.
Since it’s a holiday, why not try the top of the line VIP Vertical Rabbit
—or better idea, why not bring it as a hostess gift? The new Rabbit features all-chrome plated body with faux leather grip pad. It is housed in a hi-design storage case crafted of stainless steel and faux leather. Like all Rabbit Corkscrews, it opens a wine bottle in three seconds flat, has been tested for 20,000 cork pulls and carries a 10-Year Warranty. Metrokane offers many different Rabbit Corkscrews but only one “Super-Rabbit."
Serve the red wine via the Rabbit Aerating Pourer
, which negates the need for a decanter and a separate aerator (so awkward to hold above the glass as you pour). Simply insert the Rabbit Aerating Pourer into a wine bottle as you would a conventional pourer. When you pour the wine, you see and hear aeration happening. When you taste it, you enjoy the enhanced flavor and bouquet of perfectly aerated red wine. The Rabbit Aerating pourer is the first easy, uncomplicated way to aerate wine.
Whatever wine or main course you choose, all of us at Metrokane wish you a very happy Easter!
March 19, 2013
ALL ABOUT PASSOVER
We hope that everyone had a great St. Patrick’s Day (even though in the East it was cold enough to freeze a leprechaun’s pants off!). No matter. Spring is starting on Wednesday and we have Passover (begins Monday, 3/25) and Easter Sunday (the 31st) a little less than a week ahead.
The Passover holiday, for those of you who don’t know, is a Jewish holiday commemorating the story of the Exodus, in which the ancient Israelites were freed from slavery in Egypt. The Bible states that God helped the Children of Israel escape slavery by inflicting ten plagues upon the Egyptians, the worst being the death of the first born.
The Israelites were instructed to mark the doorposts of their homes with the blood of a spring lamb and, upon seeing this, the spirit of the Lord knew to pass over the first-borns in these homes, hence the name of the holiday.
When the Pharaoh finally freed the Israelites, it is said that they left in such a hurry that they could not wait for bread dough to rise. In commemoration, no leavened bread is eaten during the seven or eight days of the holiday, which is where matzo comes in.
It is traditional for Jewish families to gather on the first or second night of Passover for a special dinner called a Seder. Tables are set with the finest china, silverware and crystal (Rabbit Wine Glasses
) are crafted in Europe of brilliant crystal and feature elegant “pulled stems,” maximum transparency and clarity) to reflect the importance of the meal. During the meal the story of the Exodus from Egypt is retold using a special text called the Haggadah. Four cups of wine are consumed at various stages in the narrative. The most popular brand, in my house, anyway, was Manischewitz, which, in order to be Kosher for Passover, is produced using real cane sugar, instead of corn syrup.
Seder not at your house this year? No problem with the Rabbit Wine Trek
, which does so much more than carry white wine and champagne. The Wine Trek comes with a Chiller Wrap that is ready to use after 30 minutes in the freezer. It keeps red wine cool and drinkable too—the first-ever carrier that keeps wine and champagne cool as you “keep on trekking" (not sure about 40 days and 40 nights, though).
How to preserve the wine not used? Try a Wine Preserver Vacuum Pump with 2 Stoppers Wine Preserver Vacuum Pump with 2 Stoppers
The Passover Seder is a special time to spend with family and friends, acknowledging blessings, eating good food and drinking good wine. What could be better than that?
March 12, 2013
Technically, the term “March Madness” refers to the NCAA Basketball Championship, a single-elimination college basketball tournament which takes place each spring in the United States. But it could easily be applied to the weather (if you’re on the East Coast, there was a snow storm on Friday, followed by temps in the 60s on Saturday), the time change (we sprang forward this past Saturday night into Sunday) and the celebration of St. Patrick’s Day, which officially doesn’t happen until the 17th but was nevertheless kicked off by endless parades this past weekend.
My suggestion to countering all this craziness—and that’s in advance of the wearing of the green—is to take it easy (as much as possible) this week. Ease into the week with a glass of wine at the end of the day (opened with your Original Rabbit Corkscrew
, natch!) and perhaps a viewing of the Netflix hit, “House of Cards” (love that Kevin Spacey!).
Not into tv? How about getting a jump on your prep for corned beef and cabbage? Need an accompanying wine suggestion? Try a medium bodied red wine that is soft and fruity…and don’t forget to use your Rabbit Swish On-Glass Aerator!
Baking more your style? How about an Irish Soda Bread, which definitely goes better with a light, white wine (and be sure to keep it chilled in a Rabbit Wine Chilling Carafe
In closing, try not to over drink or over eat. Remember, Easter and Passover are just around the corner!
March 1, 2013
SPRING IS (FINALLY) IN THE AIR
Is it me? Or do the birds seem to be chirping extra loud these days? And why is the grocery store filled with Easter eggs, Irish soda bread…and matzoh? The answer is easy…spring is (finally!) in the air! (Note to people in the Northeast…we’re expecting a snow storm this week).
The first holiday on the calendar is St. Patrick’s Day, a cultural and religious holiday celebrated on March 17th. Named after Saint Patrick (c. AD 385–461), it was made an official feast day in the early seventeenth century. Celebrating the day usually involves parades and festivals, the wearing of green attire (Old Navy is great for t-shirts) and green beaded necklaces. It is also observed—in the US anyway—by excessive drinking (be sure to have a Rabbit Pocket Flask)
Not in the mood for green beer? (If you are, here's a recipe…12oz. beer-any beer will do, although lighter colored beers will display the green better and one drop of food coloring). How about an emerald colored cocktail, mixed up with a Rabbit Electric Cocktail Shaker
There are many green-colored liquors, including Midori or a sour apple schnapps, or, for a stronger green tint, try green crème de menthe. Measure what you need to use with the Rabbit Double Jigger
. Additional recipes can be found here: Green Cocktail Recipes
More on St. Patrick’s Day next week! But gird your loins…this is a holiday that requires a lot of stamina, especially as this year it takes place on Sunday!
February 25, 2013
So you stayed up later than you should have on a “school” night to see which movie took home the coveted Oscar and you woke up this Monday morning exhausted. What to do? How about squeeze a bunch of oranges with your trusty Rabbit Citrus Juicer
to get some vitamin c flowing!
And while you’re in recovery mode, let’s take a quick look at the history of the Oscars.
Last night was in fact the 85th annual Academy Awards, which began as a private brunch in the Blossom Room at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel on May 16, 1929 with an audience of about 270 people. Fifteen statuettes were awarded, honoring artists, directors and other personalities of the filmmaking industry. The post Awards party was held at the Mayfair Hotel, a far cry from the extravagant parties thrown these days.
In the beginning, winners were announced several months prior, but that was changed by the time the second Awards rolled around 1930. Since 1941, the Academy has used a secret ballot—usually revealed via an envelope opened on stage by a celeb—to reveal the name of the winners.
The first Best Actor awarded was Emil Jannings, for his performances in The Last Command and The Way of All Flesh. He had to return to Europe before the ceremony, so the Academy agreed to give him the prize earlier; this made him the first Academy Award winner ever.
Flash forward to last evening when Daniel Day Lewis won the best actor award for Lincoln, preceded by Jennifer Lawrence for Silver Linings Playbook and finally—at a few minutes before midnight—the best picture award went to Argo.
While most of us (on the east coast, anyway) went to bed shortly thereafter, one thing we can be pretty sure of is that most of the winners went to a party (or parties!), where they celebrated with champagne, cocktails and/or a glass of wine. The difference between now and 85 years ago? Today’s revelers have Metrokane’s wine and bar accessories to make opening and serving everything a lot easier!
February 18, 2013
For many, President’s Day, which fell this past Monday, is nothing more than a federal holiday on which there is no mail, the banks are closed and kids have off from school. The official holiday—launched in 1879—was created to celebrate George Washington’s birthday and was the first federal holiday selected to honor an American citizen.
Today the holiday also honors Abraham Lincoln, whose birthday fell on February 12th (Washington’s was February 22nd).
So where do Metrokane products fit in? Wine has long been a tradition in celebrations and dinners of the U.S. Presidency. One of the best known wine connoisseurs in the White House was Thomas Jefferson, who was the ambassador to France in the 1780s. His favorite wines were Burgundies from the Cote d'or, Hermitage Rhones, and Medoc Bordeauxs. For dessert he enjoyed Sauternes and Tokaji.
It took a few years before American wines began to be accepted by the White House. It was not until 1861, when Lincoln was president, that they were served at an official White House function. It was Mary Todd (aka Sally Field!) who originally put the local wines on the menu.
Lincoln, like Jefferson, had quite the connection with wine and drink - his father was a distillery hand, and he himself ran a number of taverns. Think of how much easier it would have been for them to be able to open their bottles with the Rabbit collection of wine tools!
February 8, 2013
The thing about Valentine’s Day is that, often, one feels that if they don’t have a significant other they have nothing to celebrate. Hogwash! The trick is to broaden your idea of a Valentine’s can be. Remember back in second grade when you got a box full of CVS bought cards from girl friends and play dates and even (yuk!) members of the opposite sex? Back then it was less about romance (and pressure!) and more about just plain friendship, candy and glitter.
Following you’ll find ways to celebrate VDay that work whether or not you’re in the midst of a torrid romance (but that one works well too).
(Ask Men's Guide to Valentines Day Alone
Valentine’s Day is normally a day to spend an exorbitant amount of money on gifts that normally cost half the price the other 364 days of the year: flowers, candy and even dinner prices get tripled because of all the suckers going all out on every Valentine’s Day purchase. Since you don’t have to worry about spending half your mortgage on gifts that don’t make it to the end of the week, take half of that money and spend it on yourself. Buy that gadget ( our suggestion
) you’ve been eyeing since before Christmas, splurge on a new wardrobe or just drop it all on a guilty pleasure like a massage. Be your own Valentine. Do whatever the hell you want. Declare it a “Me Day” and go out and have fun. No one will even notice. They are all too busy crying and whining because they are not in—or sometimes because they are in—a relationship.
Party at Home
(Top 10 Gifts for Singles Awareness Day
Are there other Single friends you normally hang out with or good friends whom you have not met for some time? You can organize a Singles Party at Home and have a blast with likeminded friends. Blogger’s suggestion: Don’t forget the cocktails and the Rabbit Electric Cocktail Mixer
(the operative word being “friends”)
Tear it up with your buds
Men always have at least one or two single friends. It’s just the law. Spend the night with the other guys who don’t have a significant other. Don’t settle for the typical night; make it a really big night. Go for dinner, drinks, to a bar or even for just a night of gambling at someone’s house (Blogger’s note: bring a bottle of wine and a Rabbit Zippity 2 corkscrew
)! Blow off some steam and forget all about the love-and-hearts crap. You also don’t have to worry about any of the holiday talk creeping into the conversation unless it’s: “Man, am I glad I don’t have to waste time on that Valentine’s junk.”
Go on a date
(Romantic Dates for Married Couples
Plan a traditional Valentine’s Day date with a movie and a dinner. Leave the kids with a babysitter or at a friend’s place so that you can spend the evening with your better half without worrying about what’s going on at home. You could catch the latest blockbuster at the movie theater or perhaps an opera or a concert if you both are lovers of classical music. Follow this up with a cozy dinner at your favorite dining place and if there is a dance floor, don’t hesitate to tug at your partner for a dance. Alternately, you can recreate your first date to add a twist to the Valentine tradition. Meet your spouse where you both had gone for the first time, order the same dishes and if possible, dance to the same music. This will not only enable you both to revive memories of days of youthful passion but also let you reaffirm your love for each other. Bloggers note: Don’t forget that special bottle of wine!
(Valentine's Day for New Couples
What about getting Valentines gifts? Do not go over the top for this initial Valentine's Day together. Sure, purchase gifts for each other, but don't waste masses and in its place concentrate on stuff your other half will savour and utilize. (Your lover a wine aficionado? Find some great ideas on our site)
A simple and effective Valentine's Day evening in together for new couples would be to prepare something together at either your house or theirs. That way you can chat and start to know each other much better while the two of you prepare dinner for the evening ahead.
No matter how you spend the holiday, be sure to spread the love!
February 4, 2013
Hi! And welcome to Metrokane’s new blog! Every week or so we will fill you in on all the latest news from the maker of the famous Rabbit and Houdini, world's two leading lines of wine accessories and bar tools. We will give you tips and suggestions for entertaining from the company that provides everything you need to open, serve and preserve wine and the perfect cocktail tools for parties and entertaining.
But first, a little history. Metrokane was founded in 1983 by Riki Kane whose background was in advertising. But it wasn’t until seventeen years later, when the company introduced its Rabbit line of wine openers, that Metrokane found its dharma. The one hundred and fifty plus product line, from the Rabbit Wine-Chilling Carafe to the Rabbit Swish
, is distributed to 42 countries, including Russia and South Africa.
With February 14th fast approaching, we thought we’d share some fun facts about Valentine's Day, which according to Wikipedia, is the second most celebrated holiday around the world, second to New Year’s Day.
St. Valentine's Day actually began as a liturgical celebration of one (or more!) early Christian saints named Valentinus. The most popular martyrology associated with Saint Valentine was that he was imprisoned for performing weddings for soldiers (who were forbidden to marry) and for ministering to Christians, who were persecuted under the Roman Empire.
The day was first associated with romantic love in the High Middle Ages, when the tradition of courtly love first flourished. By the 15th century, Valentine’s Day had evolved into an occasion in which lovers expressed their feelings by presenting flowers, chocolate and sending mushy cards (which for many of us, began with a swap of Winnie the Pooh themed cut-outs in grade school).
These days, most people are happy if they get an evening (sans kids) with a nice dinner and bottle of wine (best opened with a Rabbit Electric Corkscrew
, natch!) or—for those unattached—with friends and fancy pink cocktails (power up your Rabbit Electric Cocktail Mixer
and one of these recipes
Either way, love is in the air! Celebrate!
More next week!