*notcot - 12.27.08 , 17:53 - 3 Notes


notglogg1.jpg On silly holiday experiments, and with so much wine around combined with freezing (ok well not literally freezing, but cold for LA) weather… and seeing Mulled Wine, Spiced Wine, and Glögg recipes on Liqurious… when it came time for dan’s birthday Xmas eve we couldn’t help but read up on all the different recipes, and there are SO many variations, and ended up making out own variation that we’ve tweaked a bit over the last few days as well! So, here is ours:

NOTGLÖGG ~ a simple NOTCOT take on Glögg
1 Bottle Red Wine
1- 2oz Creme de Casis
1-2oz Creme de Mures
4-5 oz Brandy
1/2 cup Sugar (adjust to taste)

in cheese cloth:
2 Cinnamon sticks
6 Cloves
6-8 Cardamon pods
2 All Spice
pinch and a half Nutmeg

Put 1 bottle of red wine in a pot ~ add sugar and the cheese cloth bindle (we just tied it all up in there… yes, it looked like a bloody bandage) ~ keep it just under boiling for about half hour ~ add creme de casis and mures and brandy ~ simmer a bit longer ~ serve HOT [Notes: make sure its not TOO sweet ~ makes about 4 mugs… ~ also, i kind of wing all the measurements ~ so fiddle to taste… other optional ingredients we saw in researching - honey, sugar cubes, vanilla, almonds, raisins, corriander, orange/lemon peel (twist peels to release oils before dropping in)]

For more info, here’s wikipedia on Mulled Wine and Glögg… See more pictures of the process, and some fun new glasses on the next page!

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*notcot - , 14:43 - 0 Notes

Holiday Libations from Liqurious

liqurious #2323 liqurious #2326 liqurious #2318 liqurious #2330 liqurious #2316 liqurious #2287 liqurious #2329 liqurious #2328 liqurious #2281 liqurious #2332 liqurious #2284 liqurious #2271 liqurious #2272 liqurious #2267 liqurious #2282 liqurious #2266 liqurious #2333 liqurious #2308 liqurious #2289 liqurious #2297 liqurious #2331 liqurious #2312 liqurious #2262 liqurious #2324 liqurious #2335Mmmmmmm…. it’s definitely feeling chilly and holidayish here this weekend ~ so here’s a roundup of delicious drinks ~ from mulled wines and punches to ciders and molecular mixology concoctions and more! All via Liqurious!

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*notcot - 12.17.08 , 05:40 - 5 Notes

Francis Ford Coppola Encyclopedia

coppola1.jpg Inspiration + awesome web design + mind blowing packaging design + wine + customized moleskine + education + amusement? Does it really get any better? I don’t even know where to start talking to you about how impressed and fascinated i am with the Francis Ford Coppola Encyclopedia site KnoWine.com ~ or the fact that they are making wine even more accessible by TEACHING people about it, with a playful site filled with videos, info, and a grade school feeling lined notebook paper on wooden desk feel! Super cool is that they sent people off to various regions for 30 days to learn about the wines and document their adventures in text, pics, and videos.

But seriously, lets talk packaging. Who knew making the “largest screwcap in all the land” could be so beautiful? As soon as i pulled the bottles out today i was already scheming ideas for what i could do with the gorgeous carafes… so, giant screwcap + awesome carafe bottle shape, it feels like an Erlenmeyer flask meets decanter… just enough glass details to keep it interesting (from the ridges to the text around the base… and that really sweet chemical structure of reservatrol, the antioxidant found in the skin of grapes)… not to mention the branding of using stamps with the countries the wines come from instead of labels! Oh, and then there’s also the inspiring quotes on the lids of each bottle that can’t not bring a smile to anyone’s face when they are about to open it! And to top that, they sent over a few customized Francis Ford Coppola Encyclopedia customized moleskines! And they go beyond the usual cover art ~ they actually stickerize the inside cover with the stamp/labels from each region as well as stamp quotes and more randomly throughout!

I think they said it best: “Simply stated, wine is discovery. From how it’s made and where it’s made to why we drink it when we do, wine is not just wine.” So take a look at MANY pictures on the next page, from close ups to the bottles and notebooks to screenshots and diagrams of their design choices.

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*notcot - 12.16.08 , 12:41 - 5 Notes

1800 Tequila Essential Artists Up Close

1800bottle1.jpg On long overdue and super amazing things that have shown up recently ~ 8/9 of the 1800 Tequila Limited Edition Artist Bottles arrived, and i can’t bring myself to open them, i just kind of sit and stare at how gorgeous they are ~ honestly, if you haven’t seen them in person, you must! Because i’ve seen pictures, from high res to billboards, for some time now, and they were far more incredible in person! They are like gorgeous drinkable works of art… basically it feels like they are screened on to the backs of the glass bottles, which results in a nice matte feel on the back, and the art looks like its floating in the bottle of tequila… perhaps my favorite detail besides the art work itself (and the fact that the cap is a shot glass) ~ each bottle is numbered (out of 1800), has the name and bio of the artist, and their signature in silver! Really i can only ramble so much about this, but what you really need to see is all the close up pics of the bottles themselves! So click through and browse them on the next page!

Not sure what to bring for a last minute party, gift, etc ~ i think its pretty hard to go wrong with one of these… SO pretty!

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*notcot - 12.05.08 , 15:42 - 10 Notes

Rubyy ~ Blood Orange Energy

rubyy0.jpg Wow. Ok, so Rubyy, i can’t even decide where to start on telling you how many ways i’m loving this latest addition to the Energy Drink space… obvious first impressions, GORGEOUS bottle ~ i’m such a sucker for the matte black, and the vector graphics on the label with playful fairy tale-like motifs… and its the fun aluminum bottle! In such a unique shape! Not to mention the nice use of fonts and color palette… and it totally glows under a black light! And that’s just the outside… you’d think with that type of exterior, they might be trying too hard to over compensate, but this is no red bull… granted, i do have a think for blood oranges, they are just so visually dramatic and delicious! But this Blood Orange Energy “lightly carbonated energy drink” ~ is yummy! Yummy to the point where i was so exhausted and thirsty and accidentally chugged the Rubyy by my laptop after the Paper 24 Hour Dept Store… and then i was up for ages, so it works too… And unlike those Monster/Red Bull type drinks where the color of the liquid is less than appealing with its radioactive glow, well this one is actually a nice pinkish blood orange color (pics on the next page if you don’t believe me!)…

So i’m loving the bottle, the liquid is delicious… and we haven’t even begun to explore the mixology options! You can pretty much mix Rubyy in with rum, vodka, tequila ~ from your variations of cosmos to tequila sunrises, you know the type… but to get a little more unique, i’ve attached some of their new Holiday recipes as well! So see all the packaging pics, recipes and more on the next page!

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*notcot - 11.23.08 , 13:09 - 2 Notes


rimain.jpgBeam Global Spirits and Wine, Inc., redefines rye with company’s first ultra-premium rye whiskey - (rī)1 Whiskey Brings Cocktail Style and Straightforward Sophistication to Traditional Rye Whiskey Category”, and you’ve got to admit, it is a seriously un-whiskey looking designer bottle… and even more stunning is the acrylic box they sent it over encased in along with a glass and the coolest stirrer/stirrer placement i have ever seen. Using the transparency of the styrofoam slit to turn the plastic stirrer into what appeared to be a floating droplet of (rī)1 when you slide open the box… so awesome!

(rī)1 - pronounced Rye-One - is certainly making waves in what has been a rather traditional genre, and the flavor is incredible… the spiciness really hits you upside the head (i decided i’d try it neat first and not read the tasting notes until after, so i didn’t see it coming)… it was refreshing and fascinating with a cube of ice, really opening up the flavors - you have to try it!

As the press release describes: “Bottled at 92 proof, (rī)1 features a light, slightly spicy flavor and a long, luxurious finish. Straight, the nose offers a gentle, peppery nod to its rye heritage. Cut with water, the scents of dried fruit and cinnamon push to the front, providing a rich palate experience.” Also exciting… “Future variants, including (rī)2 and (rī)3, are planned to create a complete product line.” Can’t wait to see what those flavors are like! But for now, you have to check out the incredible acrylic box of goodies - i’ve been trying to figure out what else it can be used for, and first idea is… light box? See all the pics on the next page!

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*notcot - 11.19.08 , 23:30 - 7 Notes


choc1.jpg Oacoca ~ remember the recent .org post #16193? It came across my email and totally had me craving chocolate when i posted it that night ~ and a box came today, so to follow up, you have to see how cute this “indulgence worthy of the guilt” really is… and i liked the packaging, and insulated giant silver ziploc with reusable icepack inside… So check out pics of these deliciously decadent upgrades on the usual peanut butter cup…

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*notcot - 11.05.08 , 11:23 -

Boarding Pass Shiraz 2005

boardingpass1.jpg While i was in Tuscon, i picked up this bottle ~ yes, it was a total impulse buy based on packaging, but it had to be documented! And it didn’t taste tooooo bad, but not exactly stellar, but how cute is it?

So this post is really all about the packaging of this adorable Boarding Pass Shiraz 2005 from South Australia by R Wines and distributed by the very playful Grateful Palate Imports. Check out more pics on the next page for closeups of the fonts and diagrams!

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*notcot - 11.03.08 , 12:34 - 1 Notes

Liqurious Drink Concoctions

drinks.jpgRecently, i showed you our first Liqurious recipe inspired by Rachel’s Yogurt, Bee Cool, and promised you there were two more to come! Well, here they are!

Inspired by Rachel’s Yogurt flavors, here are - Sweet Summer Revival inspired by Revive (Peach Green Tea) and White Flower Bramble inspired by Glow (Berry Jasmine), and concocted by the fabulous Anita (yup, Married with Dinner, Anita who’s been working on Liqurious with us!) ~ So check out the recipes and how gorgeous pics of some of the key ingredients on the next page!

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*notcot - 10.19.08 , 23:35 - 2 Notes

Liqurious: Bee Cool

rachels0.jpgSo i’m sure by now you’ve seen some of the many Rachel’s Yogurt ads we’ve had running on the sites… this is going to sound bizarre, but initially i thought it was crazy that a yogurt company wanted to work with NOTCOT… i actually told them that maybe after seeing/tasting it i’d consider it… and then three boxes of yogurt showed up… yes, 36 little tubs of yogurt… that’s like a fridge full! Long story short, the packaging was gorgeous (handwriting on black? love the style)… i am actually still buying the Calm “Lavender Plum Honey” flavor… and as you can see the ads look so pretty and so NOTCOT!

On a really random sidetrack, when joking around with one of our FM sales guys about Rachel’s we were so amused that a yogurt company would have Cocktail recipes on their site (their Yogatini cracked me up!), and somehow it turned into a silly dare about how Liqurious should have yogurt inspired recipes… i passed the dare on to the amazing Anita Crotty (of Married with Dinner fame) ~ and low an behold, she came up with three delicious and beautiful drink recipes! Turns our Rachel’s legal team wasn’t ready to add our drinks to their site, and after all the fun we had, i’ve decided to share them with you anyhow! Anita takes the prettiest pictures of drinks, and the ingredients that go into them! So for today, i wanted to kick off Monday with Bee Cool. See more pics and the drink recipe on the next page!

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*notcot - 10.04.08 , 17:32 - 108 Notes

Crystal Head Vodka - It’s REAL!

crystalhead.jpgThe internet is a buzz with rumors on the latest “viral” video of Dan Aykroyd showing us his new Crystal Head Vodka in a gorgeous glass skull. Rumors include this being a video for the new Ghostbusters or some Indiana Jones… but i guess lesson to be learned here is ~ just because it’s going viral, doesn’t mean it’s not real!

I actually bought a few bottles today ~ lots of pics on the next page! Not the smooooothest thing i’ve tasted, but it’s not bad, and i’m totally in love with the glass skull bottle made by Bruni Glass in Milan, Italy. Apparently it is made by Diamond Estates Wines & Spirits Ltd, out of Newfoundland water triple crystal filtered through herkimer diamonds (aka double-terminated quartz crystals)! Really the story is just great though, and the video and bottle make the experience priceless ~ here are excerpts from the box: “In reverence of those enlightened after touching any of the thirteen crystal heads unearthed around our globe we offer this pure spirit”… “One of the most compelling archeological mysteries is the story of the 13 Crystal Heads. These heads are believed to be between 5,000 and 35,000 years old and were carved over a period of several hundred years but without any tool marks. In fact their very construction defies the laws of physics and common logic. They are believed to offer spiritual power to those who hold or possess them.”

See the pictures of the real thing and the video on the next page!

UPDATE: Dan did some crazy internet researching for us and here are some fun facts: Dan Aykroyd is not only an actor, but co-founder of the House of Blues, part owner of Diamond Estates Wines & Spirits Ltd (which distributes Patron in Canada), and is building his own winery, Dan Aykroyd Wines (which uses 100% snob free grapes!). There is a great interview with him on delish before the vodka release where he exposes how serious he is about wine, Crystal Skulls, UFOs, and “pure spirit from Newfoundland glacial pool water, and peaches and cream corn mash”!

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*notcot - 09.12.08 , 12:30 - 0 Notes

Liqurious Happy Hour!

liqurious #1107 liqurious #1141 liqurious #1129 liqurious #1115 liqurious #1102 liqurious #1110 liqurious #1112 liqurious #1157 liqurious #1146 liqurious #1150 liqurious #1114 liqurious #1101 liqurious #1116 liqurious #1154 liqurious #1099 liqurious #1145 liqurious #1100 liqurious #1105 liqurious #1109 liqurious #1120 liqurious #1160 liqurious #1153 liqurious #1172 liqurious #1119 liqurious #1143Wow, can you believe it’s friday already? So here’s this week’s Liqurious Happy Hour to kick off your weekend! As you know, click the pics to find out more about each post!

*notcot - 09.08.08 , 12:09 - 2 Notes

Pipette Oil & Vinegar Bottles

soy.jpgAlso found at Maison et Objet - designed by Camilla Kropp for Design House Stockholm, this set of Pipette Oil & Vinegar Bottles calls to the mad scientist in all of us… regardless of whether we’re in the kitchen, in the lab, or simply in our heads. And who says these bottles can only be used for oil and vinegar, they work just as well for soy sauce, chili oil, sugar water…….. in fact seeing these gets me thinking, you could even use these in your lab…. or your labware in your kitchen? But unlikely its as gorgeously designed as this! Really what it comes down to is that there is no longer an excuse for imprecision! (Although i’m not clear on whether there are actual measurement marks on the pipettes.) See a close up on the next page!

Merci beaucoup, Veuve Clicquot ~ who loves design as much as we do, and brought me to Paris to cover Maison et Objet 2008! More design discoveries to come…

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*notcot - , 06:01 - 0 Notes

Alessi Miniatures

alessimini.jpgWandering past the Alessi store on my block, i stopped and did a double take as i saw the Alessi Miniatures ~ particularly the “juicy salif” miniature citrus-squeezer by philippe starck for alessi from 1990… Honestly, of all of them, it seemed the most usable… can’t you just imagine using it to fresh squeeze some mini kumquat juice into a shot glass for some designer shots? While i’d heard about these, the images online (see next page) really don’t do them justice, it’s seeing it next to the original that makes it that much more fun! And at a mere 2” x 1.8” - h 4.5”, it could even make for an adorable christmas tree ornament!

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*notcot - 09.07.08 , 11:07 - 1 Notes

Barbara Carafe by Nina Jobs

carafeballmain.jpgDesign House Stockholm has been one of my favorite design companies for some time now, and i was absolutely giddy to meet the people as well as the full series of products in person finally! More to come on the booth itself, but there were a few stand out products they’ve added to their collection that deserve features of their owns! Here is the one product i fell in love with as soon as i started playing with it (consider this on my birthday wishlist!)…

The Barbara Carafe by Nina Jobs for Design House Stockholm ~ is a brilliant experience… the glass carafe comes with an option of Amythest, Black, Clear crystal balls, which has a subtly ground surface, so it won’t roll away… the crystal balls can serve as a top for the carafe, add more intrigue and/or a splash of color when hidden in the nest of a bubble in the base of the carafe, or as merely another playful tactile aspect to the carafe experience. And what could they possibly do to make such a gorgeous design better? Have it come in a gorgeous matte black gift box that sort of resembles a hat box… so when purchased you don’t even have to worry the unboxing experience! See more images of the Barbara Carafe by Nina Jobs for Design House Stockholm on the next page, including hands on pics from Maison et Objet.

Merci beaucoup, Veuve Clicquot ~ who loves design as much as we do, and brought me to Paris to cover Maison et Objet 2008! More design discoveries to come…

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