WEEKEND PICKS
Weekend Pick: OR-G Ultra Premium Vodka VIP Dinner Party at Ms. Tootsie's

It’s quite common to have a difficult time figuring out how to spend Saturday evenings before heading out for the night, but luckily, provocatively named vodka brand, Or-G, has you covered. The brand invites all, of legal age of course, to join their weekly dinner party this Saturday (March 29th) evening at Ms. Tootsie’s. The groundbreaking company behind the Ultra-Premium Vodka, which is the first spirit to use Persimmon fruit, is offering a variety of opportunities throughout the evening to experience the unique vodka, while enjoying a nice dinner.

LIQUID COURAGE
Maker's Mark Tasting At Morton's The Steakhouse

Everyone has their drink of choice. Beer, vodka, rum, tequila, whiskey, the list goes on and on. For some people, especially those with particularly patriotic sensibilities, drinking whiskey is their duty, and Maker's Mark has been more than happy to serve it's particular brand of bourbon to the American masses over the years. While it might seem like common knowledge to know that bourbon is in fact a type of whiskey, do you know what makes regular whiskey into a delicious bourbon like Maker's Mark? We were just as curious, so we decided to go straight to the source to get answers and attended a special Maker's Mark tasting event at Morton's The Steakhouse in downtown New York City.

TRENDTASTIC
Get Crafty this St. Patrick's Day!

Irish or not, we're all invited to participate in the exciting festivities taking place this St. Patrick’s Day. And as with every major celebratory holiday, Joonbug.com is here to provide you with, not only the best parties and events, but also, new ways to celebrate the holiday along the way. So before you head out to one of our many bar crawls happening nationwide, grab some crafty supplies, pump your favorite tunes, invite your friends, and challenge yourself to a few St. Patrick’s Day themed DIY activities as outlined below.

DELICIOUS DEBUTS
Spice up your Holidays with UV's Sriracha Vodka

There's been a lot of hype about the mandated shut down of California's sriracha factory, and enthusiasts of the hot and spicy rooster sauce may be in a bit of a panic on how to get their sriracha fix (a squirt of which certainly makes all holiday food taste a bit better).

UV's Sriracha Vodka is a new chili pepper flavored vodka that makes for a fun, low-cal (80 calories in 1.5oz) holiday shot and is a great mixer for holiday-themed drinks.

LIQUID COURAGE
National Vodka Day

Today, October 4, is National Vodka Day, and we’ve got the low down on everybody’s favorite clear spirit. Let’s start off with some facts about Vodka that you may not have known.

  • “Vodka” is a diminutive form of the Slavic word “Voda” (water), essentially translating to “Little Water”. The earliest recorded use of the word was in Polish court documents, dating back to 1405.
  • The original history of Vodka is somewhat contentious: The Russians claim to have invented it in the 9th century, while the Poles claim to have first created vodka in the 8th century. Both sides insist that Vodka came from their country to this day.
  • Wherever Vodka originated, its earliest incarnations was quite different from Vodka as we know it today. It had a different flavor, color, and smell, and only contained around 14% alcohol (the highest percentage possible through natural fermentation). It also had a different use, employed primarily as a medicine rather than a beverage. With the invention of the still, however, the alcohol content shot straight up, and Vodka became popular as a drink rather than a medicine.
  • One of the most influential reasons why vodka became so popular in Russia and Poland was because the spirit never froze in the hard Eastern European winters, due to its high alcohol content.
  • You might think that flavored Vodka is a modern trend, but it’s actually almost as old as Vodka itself. Since early production methods were crude and faulty, fruits, herbs, and spices were used to mask imperfections. Later, flavored Vodka became a trademark for a producer and a display of his skill. Flavors included lemon, orange, ginger, coffee, cloves, pepper, and aromatic bison grass.
  • Russian chemist D.M. Mendeleev spent years perfecting the ideal recipe for Vodka (40% ethanol, 60% water), which he revealed in 1894. His methods are still used by distilleries all across the world.
  • Though rye and wheat are classically used to make Vodka, it can be made from pretty much anything that ferments, including potatoes, sugar cane, barley, molasses, and even vegetables like onions, cabbage and beets.
  • Vodka is considered one of the “purest” spirits. A low level of congeners (byproducts of fermentation) means that Vodka is less likely to leave you hung-over and reeling the day after you imbibe.
  • Besides being optimal for boozing, Vodka has a whole bevy of other uses in everyday life. In your bathroom, Vodka can be used to kill mildew and mould, and to prevent razor blades from rusting. It can be used to remove poison ivy oil from affected skin, and to disinfect jellyfish sting. If you’ve spilled some red wine, spraying Vodka on the stain, scrubbing, then blotting dry will help clean your carpet. Vodka: it’s not just for drinking anymore.
  • Vodka is the most popular spirit in the world. It currently accounts for 10% of the Russian GDP.
LIQUID COURAGE
Why We Love Exclusiv Vodka

Exclusiv Vodka launched in 2001, but has only emerged in the US in the past few years. The small vodka company based out of Moldova, a small country that neighbors the creator, Serge Chistov's, Ukranian home. The vodka is produced using only the best winter wheat, resulting in a natural sweetness and uses naturally filtrated water from Central Europe. Now that we've got a taste of this vodka, we want to share with you why it's so good!

It's Cheap. Let's face it, the economy is still struggling and with it, our bank accounts. So at a jaw-dropping price of $9.99 a bottle (no, we aren't joking), it's hard not to swipe up a bottle or five. Talk about bang for your buck!

RESTAURANT 101
Old World Russian Riches: Caviar and Vodka


New York City is filled with many establishments trying to convey an old fashioned feeling to take you back in time. Many transport you to the prohibition era, where your cocktails are fancy and the lighting dim- you may even have to use a password to get in.

Now it's time to take a step in another direction and visit the other side of the world without leaving the city. Imagine this, you are back in the early twentieth century in St. Petersburg, a time both dazzling and taxing, in a city in love with celebrations and fortune. The location, Tzar's manor where you are eating off expensive china while drinking from the finest crystal. You look around admiring the unique Russian Literature and luxurious staircase which leads to the parlor. While running your fingers along the sides of the empire sofas and antique chairs, you eventually find yourself in the room you were looking for, The Grand Ballroom. As you look up, you find yourself in the middle of the room staring directly up at the skylight. This feeling can be replicated at FireBird, a peerless restaurant which places you in Russia during pre-Revolutionary times.

NIGHTLIFE NEWS
Cheap Thrills: Your Guide to this Weekend's Open Bars

Let’s say you have a limited amount of money, or perhaps no money at all, but you’ve already gotten it in your head that you’d like to have a few drinks. Glancing over at the jar of loose change, you refuse, as you should, to settle for a 40 oz. from the bodega on the corner. So you start to scroll through your contacts for a fully stocked fridge, err, friend, but wait! Here in New York City, at any moment, on any night of the week, exists an extraordinary phenomenon known as an "open bar," and it’s only a matter of knowing when and where.

DAILY BITES
Eco-Friendly 360 Vodka

Boasting the title of the planet's first Eco-friendly vodka, 360 Vodka, a Missouri-based spirits company, is dedicated not only to making great tasting vodka, but also to saving the environment. Like Snapple, made from the best things on earth, all of 360's seven flavored vodkas are produced with natural flavors added during the distillation process. Flavors like Georgia Peach and Bing Cherry are "so fresh and intense, you'd think they were still growing!"

Not only is 360 committed to creating the purest flavored vodkas, distilled four times and filtered five times, they are heavily involved in reducing their company's carbon footprint. By using 100 percent recycled content and 100 percent post consumer waste, production of the bottle's label alone saved 629 full-grown trees and 288,188 gallons of water.