Akvavit

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Welcome to this week’s installment of our Thirsty Thursday blog. I haven’t blogged on a cultural beverage in many weeks, so I am happy to be back featuring a beverage that many of you have not heard of. This week’s featured drink comes to us from Scandinavia and is known as Akvavit. Let’s learn about this liquor and where it comes from.

Akvavit or aquavit is a flavored liquor that is produced in Scandinavia since the 15th century. It is the most popular drink in Denmark and is also drank in Germany, England and parts of the U.S. with large Scandinavian settlements. It’s distinctive flavor comes from it’s main spice caraway. It is also made with cardamom, cumin, anise, fennel, lemon and orange peel, some varieties even include dill. It is generally 40% alcohol by volume and must have at least 37.5% alcohol by volume to be called Akvavit by the rules set by the European Union.

This drink is very popular in Scandinavian culture. It is generally drank at weddings and holiday celebrations. It is an aperitif and generally sipped from a small shot glass accompanied by a dark beer. It is similar to vodka, as it is distilled from grains or potatoes. It is then flavored with the spices listed above.

The earliest reference to Akvavit in Scandinavian culture comes from 1531. In a letter from the Danish lord of Bergenshus to the Roman Catholic Archbishop the lord references the archbishops illness with suggestions on the healing powers of Akvavit. Although these so called healing powers were a bit over exaggerated by the lord, it can aid in digestion, especially of rich foods. Which is why it is most often drank at large lunch meals on Easter and Christmas.

Are you ready to try this beverage yourself? Time to call us here at Ambassador Travel today!

 

Ambassador Travel Ltd. | 920.236.7777 | ambassadortravelltd.com

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Don’t Ya Wanna?

Fanta0011.jpgTypically on Thirsty Thursday we feature alcoholic beverages, but I am making an exception today due to the fact that the history of this drink is pretty cool, especially to a geeky history major like me. If you’ve ever traveled to Europe or Germany specifically you may have been surprised at how much the people like Fanta, and there is a very good reason for that. Let’s crack a bottle of this orangey drink and learn about it’s interesting past.

Because of the embargo on Germany during World War Two, Germany’s Coca-Cola production went into a stand still. They were not able to receive the syrup needed to produce Coke. This lead Max Keith, Head of Coca-Cola Deutschland, to come up with a plan. He decided that his corporation needed to put out something that Germany had access to. And thus Fanta was born. The drink was so popular that 3 million cases were produced between 1940 and 1943 allowing the factory to stay open during the remainder of WWII.

After the war ended, Coca-Cola took back control of the German corporation as well as the profits and Fanta recipe. The drink was originally marketed heavily in Europe, Asia and South America, but eventually came over to the United States. If you have ever had it in Europe you know it is much less orange than it is in the United States. Obviously you can get this beverage here, but don’t you want to try this drink in it’s native country? I knew you did! So give us a call today!

Ambassador Travel Ltd. | 920.236.7777 | ambassadortravelltd.com

Caipirinha (kai-pir-in-ya)

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So if you are a lover of our blog you may recognize this drink because we have featured it before, but this article is pretty cool about the history of Brazil’s Caipirinha. Shout out to Travel Planner Brittany for sending me this cool article that I can share with all of our followers. Happy thirsty Thursday everyone, check out this article and let the flavors of Brazil inspire your next destination!

Article: https://www.gadventures.com/blog/caipirinha-brief-history-brazils-famous-cocktail/#.V-qtTcBX040.facebook

Intersted in trying this beloved cocktail? Want to know more about Brazil? It’s time to call us here at Ambassador Travel Ltd.

 

Ambassador Travel Ltd. | 920.236.7777| ambassadortravelltd.com

 

Love Libations

Cheers to Thirsty Thursday! Today we are going to look at creating a signature cocktail for your destination wedding.

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Although they are not the only resort to do it, Sandal’s WeddingMoon program allows couples to create a signature drink through the wedding package that they selected. They allow the soon-to-be Mr. and Mrs. to customize this drink with local flavors, colors coordinating to the color scheme of the nuptials and so much more. For more information on this call one of our Destination wedding specialists at Ambassador Travel or request an appointment here! You can also read more about signature drink ideas that Sandals offers on their WeddingMoon blog http://sandalsweddingblog.com/blog/create-your-own-signature-wedding-cocktail/

Being a soon-to-be bride myself, I think adding personal touches to a wedding is one of the best parts of planning. And although I am not doing a destination wedding, I would imagine that the personal touches are a lot less than they would be if you were planning a traditional wedding, so having options like a signature drink is a great way to bring your personality into it. Sandals, in my opinion, really does the whole destination wedding thing right. Going into it you know that they have a lot of options for couples when they have a name just for their destination program. WeddingMoon allows you to pick your flowers, cake, theme, colors and much more. Sandals basically uses an online wedding planning system to make planning your wedding simple, and completely stress free.

Now lets get back to the drink. Signature drinks have become just as common at weddings as horrible bridesmaid dress. They stand out, often come with kitschy names and really help your guests to feel a part of your big day. With my own wedding we offered a signature cocktail at our engagement party called “broken mirror beer,” obviously to an outsider they would have no idea what this had to do with. But to our close friends it was a funny reminder of the first night me and my fiance met when I broke the mirror in his bathroom on accident. Special touches on an even more special day make all the stress and planning worth it and I think doing that in anyway whether that be a signature drink, or a memory box or a million other things can help you achieved the goal of that day. A marriage is about two people, but a wedding is about celebrating with the closest people in your life and for one day making that marriage about them as well.

White not so Russians


white-russian1Sometimes going into Thirsty Thursday I am here to debunk what are thought be cultural drinks, and are simply American made with fancy names. Today is just that day. On a regular (daily) basis I learn so much about what I am writing about. Today again is one of those days. I thought I would continue our Russian theme this week by featuring a White Russian. I was hoping to find out that this popular creamy beverage had a rich culture in the Motherland, but I was sadly mistaken.

White Russians consist of vodka, coffee liqueur (most popularly Kahlua), and cream or milk. This came out of the popular drink the Black Russian in 1949 in the United States. A White Russian is a Black Russian with creme. Neither have anything to do with the former soviet state, they are just named Russians because their primary ingredient is vodka.

Even though you won’t be pairing this drink with pickled herring it doesn’t mean you can’t indulge in its creamy deliciousness. Follow the recipe below:

1 ½ Ounces Vodka

¾  Ounces Kahlua

¾ Ounces Heavy Cream

Old Fashion Glass

Shake well with ice, strain into chilled Old Fashion glass, sip and enjoy.

It’s all Greek to Me

water_and_ouzo.jpgThirsty Thursday is here again and you know what that means, time for the drink of the week. This week’s feature comes to us all the way from Greece–Ouzo. This anise flavored liqueur is the national beverage of Greece, but it can also be found in Cyprus. It became an exclusively Greek product in 2006, similar to Sangria of Spain and Portugal as well as Champagne to the Champagne region of France. Lets learn a little more about this cultural beverage.

First created by monks in the 14th century in Mt. Athos, Ouzo didn’t go into modern production until the 19th century. The first distillery was located in Tyrnavos in 1856 and owned by Nikolaus Katsaros, which is where one of the most popular brands of Ouzo comes from–Ouzo Tyrnavos. Unlike many Thirsty Thursday feature we don’t have any conflicting stories about Ouzo. Sorry no bar fights over a drink this week.

Generally taken as a shot, the drink can also be served with water on the rocks. It is known as an aperitif and if you have been an avid reader of the blog, you know that means a before dinner drink or part of happy hour. Generally served with appetizers such as fish, olives and feta cheese. Ouzo tastes similar to absinthe because of its anise flavor. But became much more popular with the banning of Absinthe during the 20th century.

To try your own Ouzo shot, give us a call at Ambassador Travel 920.236.7777 so we can start creating you Greece getaway today!

Thirsty Thursday

KC0205_Paloma_s4x3.jpgFor all of our travelers headed to Mexico here is a drink you are certainly going to want to order. According to bonappetit.com, “It turns out the Paloma, not the Margarita, is Mexico’s most beloved cocktail.” So lets learn a little about this fun festive drink.

Paloma, the Spanish word for dove, is a fun refreshing beverage for anyone. Whether you are drinking it in it’s native Mexico or making at home for upcoming barbecue’s it is a great warm weather drink. There are two options for making the drink. Originally it is made with white tequila, and grapefruit soda. Served over ice and garnished with a lime wedge. For a fresher taste fresh grapefruit juice and club soda along with freshly squeezed lime can replace the soda.

So for all of our travelers you will have one more drink option for your unlimited drink and food package. Good luck and please feel free to write me after you’ve tried your first or seventh Paloma!

For more information please feel free to call Ambassador Travel Ltd. 920.236.7777

 

Excuse my French

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Whether you live the fabulous life or just want to add a little class to your next cocktail party, this fancy drink will be right up your alley. The Kir Royale is a French cocktail that will make you feel like you are sipping your bubbly at Versailles even if you’re just in your living room. And the best part, it only calls for two ingredients. Someone famous somewhere said, “There is beauty in simplicity,” and I honestly believe they must have been talking about the Kir Royale. So here is what you will need: Champagne and Creme de Cassis. And for those of you who have never heard of the second ingredient, no worries, it’s actually fairly common and you should be able to find it at any large liquor stores.

lejay-bottle.jpgSo lets learn a little more about this simply fantastic drink. A Kir Royale is actually a spin on another French cocktail just known as a Kir. Kir’s are made with Creme de Cassis and a white wine. So the only difference is the champagne, but lets be honest champagne makes everything more fun. For those of you wondering what Cassis is, it’s a dark red liqueur made from blackcurrants. Blackcurrants are berries native to central and northern Europe and as far as I can tell are similar to blackberries and are also used in jellies and jams. One of the most common brands of Creme de Cassis is known as Lejay. And if this drink wasn’t already fancy enough, the same cassis buds used for Lejay Creme de Cassis are also used in the high end perfume Chanel No. 5. But don’t worry the Liqueur is much cheaper per ounce than the perfume.

So now that I have inspired your thirsty Thursday drink of choice it is time to get out there and sample this fancy beverage. I plan on making them this weekend for my husband’s birthday, make sure to check out our Instagram for pictures!

For more information or if you would like to sip this fancy beverage in it’s country of origin please call Ambassador Travel at 920.236.7777 or visit ambassadortravelltd.com to schedule an appointment.

My My Mai Tai

It’s Thirsty Thursday everyone!! That means the weekend is right around the corner. Get through the next few days by sipping on our featured drink of the week the Mai Tai. OneMock-Mai-Tai2.jpg thing this drink does is put you in the mood for a tropical vacation. Some of the best Mai Tai’s I’ve ever had were in the Bahamas and every time I sip one it brings me back to paradise. Let learn a little bit about this vacation style beverage.

A Mai Tai is made with white rum, dark rum, orange curaçao, Orgeat syrup and lime juice. They are typically garnished with a pineapple or a tropical flower. Shake your drink with ice and pour over ice for a refreshing cocktail that will transport you and your tastebuds to white sand beaches and crystal clear skies.

RoyalHawaiianMaiTai.JPGThe Mai Tai is claimed to be invented by two rival restaurants in L.A. Trader Vic’s owned by Victor Bergeron claimed to have made the drink in 1944. Vic had friends visiting from Tahiti so he created this cocktail. One of the friends yelled out “very good” in Tahitian, which in the native tongue translates to Mai Tai. The rival restaurant who stakes their claim to fame is Don the Beachcomber restaurant. This tinsel town eatery claimed to have invented the drink in 1933, 11 years before Vic and his Tahitian friends. Reports claim that the Mai Tai’s from both restaurants taste so different that you may not even know they are the same drink. Officially there are 11 different ways to make a Mai Tai, so the argument will still persist.

Looking to sip on a Mai Tai poolside? Give us a call 920.236.7777

Thirsty Thursday: Jenever

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Welcome to Thirsty Thursday today we are taking a trip across the pond to Europe to learn about a beverage known as Jenever. Jenever translated means Dutch Gin in English. It is a very popular liquor in the Netherlands, Belgium, France and Germany. As far as I can tell the Dutch part does not mean it comes from there, but makes it a specific type of gin because it is described as tasting more like vodka.

The European Union states that it can only be called Jenever if it is made in 2 northern French Departments (also known as regions or states) and in 2 German Federal States. The drink itself is produced by distilling malt wine with added herbs such as the juniper berry. In Dutch the word juniper is translated to jeneverbes hence Jenever as the name.

Like many alcohols it’s history is a little confusing and disputed, but lets learn about it shall we. Jenever is attributed to being invented by Dutch Chemist Franciscus Sylvius de Bouve. And it was first sold by him as medicine in the 16th century. One problem with this theory is that Bouve was not born until the 17th century, so him inventing it in the 16th is pretty much impossible. There are also records showing that in 1606 it stopped being considered a medicine and that pretty much completely discredits Bouve. The National Jenevermuseum in Belgim claims it was created in Flanders in the 13th century by Professor Eric Van Schoonenberghe. There wasn’t much proof or history behind that, but it would make more sense for it to be invented at this time.

There are two types of Jenever: Old and New. This doesn’t have anything to do with it’s actual age, but instead the distilling process. New style contains more grain than malt. According to guidelines new style cannot contain more than 15% malt wine and no more than 10 grams of sugar per liter. Old style must have at least 15% malt wine and no more than 20 grams sugar per liter.

The liquor is served generally in a tulip shaped glass, poured to the brim at room temperature. It is often consumed as well in a frosted shot glass.

To try out this beverage yourself you will need to call 920.236.7777 or visit our website ambassadortravelltd.com to set up an appointment with one of our excellent Travel Consultants!