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Ginger cocktails

Last night I was at Uncommon Ground to see a friend perform in their Singer Spotlight Unplugged series.  I've had some mixed experiences at UG, but last night was fairly smooth.  It was made even more smooth by the ginger martini I consumed.  Ok, martinis - plural.


Ginger cocktails, once an anomaly, are really quite popular these days and I couldn't be more pleased!  The low heat pairs well with so many different flavors.  Lemon?  Mint?  Chocolate liqueur?  Sure...ginger can play nice with all of those!  It's friendly like that. If you want to recreate the ginger experience for your guests, here are some recipes to get you started:

Easy Ginger Martini
Icy Lemon-Ginger Slush
Ginger-Rosemary Lemon-Drop


Pop of Color from CB2

The other day I received the new CB2 catalog, and - squeeee!  It's full of the promise of warmer days spent on windy rooftops!  (For those not in Chicago, CB2 is the hipper younger brother to Crate & Barrel...there are only a few CB2 locations in the country, but they'll ship anywhere.) Anyway, aside from all the photos giving a shout out to the West Side, what really caught my eye was all the eye-popping, inexpensive serveware.


Ah yes, the man who accurately predicted the coming of Reality TV.  Warhol Quote Plate, $1.50 (1 of 4 designs)


Also by Andy Warhol.  1960s Flower Plate, $3.95 (1 of 3 designs)


That's what your guests will say! Comic Appetizer Plate, $1.95 (1 of 4 designs)


Dual use is always good...these could serve as drink glasses or bud vases. Zombie Tumblers, $3.95 each




Love these jewel-tones.  You could use them during the holidays, too. Gem Martinis, $4.95 each


Edible Shot Glasses

Imagine you're having a party and you decide to offer shots.  Sure, you could gather a hodge-podge of little glasses detailing your days on Greek row, but really, where's the charm in that?  You've probably seen ice-tray shot glasses...have you come across the candy ones?


Although I imagine they would get sticky after a while (but maybe that's better than a melting ice sculpture in your hand), these candy shot glasses from Perpetual Kid would be great for a summertime event.  Fill with a lemon-drop shot or just plain lemoncello (or a blue Hawaii, or any other colorful drink).  There's also a candy-cane version, perfect for holiday joy of the liquid persuation!  You could try to combat the sticky factor by wrapping a circle of Press-n-Seal on the bottom and lower section of each cup.

Additional ideas

Make your own Gummi Shot Glass
...or one out of a cucumber
...or purchase a Chocolate Shot Glass or one that resembles a chocolate-lined Ice Cream Cone




From Etsy: Cute serving pieces for spring

Yesterday I went out in just a t-shirt and jeans.  Today, it was more like a wool coat and scarf.  When Mother Nature's mood swings get wild, it's clearly Springtime in the Second City. Never mind that we won't see robins and perennials for quite a while, I'm in the mood for spring!  Here are some really cute pieces that I found on Etsy:

Spring Bird Linens by Laceybabe



Ceramic Coasters - Dandelions by laurenmc18




Robins Egg Bowl by Peggitha



It doesn't scream "SPRING!!!" like the rest of these offerings, but there's something inherently spring-like about this Vase of Vietnam by soule


Decor for your Door: the Simply Bloomin' Hanging Basket by twoinspireyou


Cooking with Guinness

You know, I have a dog named Guinness and while it's amusing to imagine him as a chef (Can we eat now? Now? How about now?), this post is actually about the beer.  Or more correctly, the stout.  Namely, recipes that involve Guinness, the stout.

Mr SCS, posing in front of the Guinness brewery in Dublin, 2005

...because, oh hey!  It's St Patrick's Day!  Did you know that?

Appetizer: Guinness Cheese Fondue (Today's weather is a bit warm for this dish - at least in Chicago - but this is a good one for cold nights)

Main Course: Guinness Stew

Dessert: Guinness Cupcakes and Guinness Float (because one dessert is not enough)

Well, Happy St Patrick's day.  I did my green-tinged socializing over the weekend, so this post is about as celebratory as I'm going to get today.  Right, then...um...Erin go Bragh, green beer, shamrock shakes, etc.!

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