Booze Buzz: Circa Brewing Co. in Brooklyn

Circa Brewing Co. opened in downtown Brooklyn, New York, less than a month ago, but people are already fans of its craft beer and pizza. Here's why.

You know what I like even better than a glass of ice cold beer on a scorching summer day? Not having to take a long, sweaty subway ride home afterwards. Circa Brewing Co., welcome to the neighborhood.

Circa Brewing Co. opened in Downtown Brooklyn less than a month ago, but it’s already found a steady stream of regulars (including us) who are incorporating it into their weekend bar circuit. Here’s why.

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“Indy South”: Why You Need to Visit Johnson County, Indiana

Johnson County, or "Indy South," has great craft beer and fun for the whole family. Find out why you've got to visit this Indiana hotspot.

There are places you visit expecting to have an amazing time, and they deliver in spades: Hawaii, perhaps, or Rome and Hong Kong. Then there are other corners of the Earth you travel to without an inkling of what to expect and are wonderfully surprised by how charming they are. Johnson County, Indiana — or “Indy South” — is one of these places. Here’s why.

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Diplomático Rum: The Rum You Didn’t Know You Needed

Diplomático rum is deliciously complex and can be used in a variety of cocktails. Find out what happened when we put the Reserva Exclusiva to the ultimate taste test.

One of the best aspects of writing about travel and booze is that I’m constantly discovering new drinks and spirits. Chartreuse? Delicious. Kentucky Colonel? More, por favor! Sometimes, however, I come across these gems completely by accident. Case in point: Diplomático Rum.

While sipping a lavender negroni at Dante during Negroni Week, I started chatting with the women next to me at the bar. (You know you’re gonna become fast friends if you’re bonding over a negroni.) As we discussed our favorite spirits — mine being bourbon, of course — I realized that I don’t drink rum very often.

Enter Shanika, my rum fairy godmother. When she described the Diplomático rum she loved, I couldn’t help but be intrigued. Was this the rum that would finally convert me into a rum fan?

She offered to send us a bottle of Diplomático Reserva Exclusiva rum in exchange for an honest, no holds-barred review of our experience. What follows is the true account of our rum taste test party cocktail education.

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How to Fall in Love with Indianapolis in 10 Easy Steps

Indianapolis's food and drinks scene, Midwestern charm, and hip factor took me by surprise. Here's how you, too, will fall in love with Indiana's capital.

I’ve got an announcement: Indianapolis is my new favorite city.

But wait, you’re thinking. Don’t you say that about every new place you visit? Well, actually, no. I have no shame in admitting that I wouldn’t return to certain parts of China, for example. And Brussels? Not going back either. #Sorrynotsorry.

With so much of the world to see, it’s rare for me to want to return to the same place twice. You’d better keep me on my toes — and have some darn good beer to boot.

Indianapolis’s charm took me by surprise: I loved its food and drinks scene, as expected, but I found so many more things to love. In fact, once I returned to New York City, I immediately told Mr. Five O’Clock that we’d better get back to Circle City as soon as possible. Here’s how you, too, will fall in love with Indiana’s capital.

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Why I’m So Excited To Visit Indiana

Surprised to learn that Indianapolis is on my bucket list? Indiana as a whole has been on my radar since I was teen, which is why I'm excited to visit!

You might be surprised to learn that Indianapolis has been on my (fairly) secret bucket list for years. In fact, Indiana as a whole has been on my radar since I was teen, which is why I’m so stoked to be visiting this week!

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Oh My Guinness!: Touring the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin

There's nothing quite as good the perfect pour of a pint of Guinness. Here's some insider tips for your visit to the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Ireland.

As someone with a long line of Irish ancestors on the family tree (as in, I’m Irish all year round and not just on St. Patrick’s Day), you might say I’ve got Guinness running through my veins.

In my thirty-odd years on this planet, I’ve found there’s nothing quite as good the perfect pour of a pint of the Black Stuff. That’s why, on our recent family heritage trip in May 2017, we knew we’d need to make a pilgrimage to the Holy Grail of Beer Lovers — er, I mean the Guinness Storehouse — in Dublin, Ireland.

After spending six hours (!) at the joint, we’re here to share what to do — and not do — on your visit to the Guinness Storehouse.

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Drinking for a Cause: Negroni Week 2017

You’ll never forget your first… negroni, that is.

My first ever negroni was like a first kiss gone horribly wrong: we knocked teeth (actually, my two front teeth hit the rim of my glass because it was too dark to see properly); it was slobbery; and we just didn’t really connect. At the time, I liked bitterness in my cocktails about as much as I like stepping on chewing gum in flip flops on the Times Square subway platform.

All that changed, however, once I tried a negroni at August Laura in Brooklyn last year. Their negroni was boozy, to be sure, but also well balanced and had just enough bite to leave me wanting more. I’ve finally warmed up to the drink, which is traditionally made with equal parts gin, campari, and vermouth rosso. It’s a good thing that I have, because August Laura is participating in Negroni Week 2017!

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“Inn Bruges”: Or, How St. Christopher’s Inn Taught Me to Stop Worrying and Love Hostels

With a Belgian beer bar, nightly beer tastings, and clean rooms, St. Christopher's Inn in Bruges, Belgium taught me to actually like hostels!

I’m going to let you in on a secret: I usually don’t stay in hostels. Maybe it’s because, at 31 years old, I don’t want my beauty sleep interrupted by some young whippersnappers bursting into my room at 3 AM singing “We Are The Champions.” (File under experiences from my 20s I’d rather forget.) St. Christopher’s Inn in Bruges, however, changed my mind 100% about what an excellent hostel experience can be.

From their friendly service to hosting one of the best beer tastings in Bruges, here’s why I would stay at St. Christopher’s Inn again and again.

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Five O’Clock Fridays: Kentucky Colonel

Kentucky Colonel craft cocktail recipe
Get the recipe for the Kentucky Colonel, a craft cocktail made at Travel Bar in Brooklyn, New York.

In the “Five O’Clock Fridays” series, we’ll highlight a particular drink we’re loving right now. Depending on where we stumble upon this brilliant beverage, we’ll either provide a recipe to go along with it, or provide tasting notes and point you to where you can purchase it. Today’s edition: the Kentucky Colonel!

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