COCKTALES, by the Thirsty Blogger

The world of livin the good life, alcohol & travel

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Kirin launches

April 13th, 2014 · ~ Beer (lager / ale / stout) ~, ~ Booze news / new products ~, ~ Events ~

Japanese lager Kirin has hit our shores officially, via GAB.

Good mix

Good mix

The launch party was awesome. And huge, taking place at Zebra Square in the city.

Party kicked off just before sunset about 7pm, the best time to start drinks.

Some welcome thing goin on

Some welcome thing goin on

There was Japanese cuisine awaiting guests as soon as we stepped in, with an outdoor BBQ goin on. A friend passed me some yakitori (meat & seafood), which went well with the beer.

 

Keep 'em comin buddy!

Keep ‘em comin buddy!

The main party was actually indoors. The set-up was like a mini food street, with lil stalls serving up good Japanese stuff. Swallowed them all, ‘cept some green tea dessert shit.

Bumped into the bartender that kept us happy during my last event at Zebra Square. He did a super job this time too.

The Japanese ambassador launched it in front of about 400 guests.

Party goin on

Party goin on

We enjoyed Kirin from bottles all night. The beer is 100% malt, as many beers are. This means it’s all-barley malt, with are no adjuncts like rice or corn. Some brewers like Budweiser add those to help the beer taste lighter, and coz it’s cheaper.

However Kirin Breweries (which was established in 1869) uses only the first-press of the filtered malt, which means the malt mash is filtered only once, then the wort sent to fermentation. The first-press is usually lighter, so this makes the beer taste lighter as well. Dont worry coz alcohol content is the same at 5%.

Easy

Easy

I’d put this down as a pale lager / pilsner. Characteristics of Kirin – light start, quiet finish, no lingering taste, medium-high carbonation. Bitterness is minimal. I’d say it’s a beer you can enjoy at anytime with most meals. Breakfast included. Goes down easy.

There was a limited amount of Kirin draught available, which was enjoyable. Smooth.

I do think they should drop the ”ichiban” for the export market, coz itchy bun means something else in English. Cracked us up each time the MC said it! Doesn’t sound cool. I overheard some trade guys near me sayin sumtin about itchy bawah.

Kirin Ichiban Launch Event 22

I’ve always thought GAB needs a wider portfolio. As for bringing in Kirin (they have a 5-year deal), it would be facing-off with (and is probably a reaction to) Asahi from Carlsberg (CMB). Which has years’ head-start.

An advantage GAB has is CMB has done all the groundwork as far as making Malaysians try Japanese beer. So the consumer education spend and effort will be a lot less.

However, CMB now brews Asahi here, so they price it reasonably. GAB does not have that advantage yet.

Look out for Kirin at bars and supermarkets in Peninsular Malaysia. It’s available in bottles and cans. and possibly draught in the second half of the year.

 

Brain damage: 7.5/10

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Am opening a bar

April 1st, 2014 · ~ Bars / Clubs / Restaurants ~

Yea, it’s about time.

After being pushed by various parties, am going into a venture with several partners n investors. It’s gonna be different. (But i bet that’s what they all say!)

Am handling concept, music and marketing.

Theme will be 2499, ie futuristic / galactic shit. The entrance will be like a silver flying saucer (arent they all silver? I think i’ll make it purple), and u walk up a small step ladder and end up inside this circular ‘UFO bar’. Of course the effects and blue lighting will add to the buzz.

Leave your light sabers by the door.

It will be  tastefully done; with a loungy setting.

Yea ok, only if they promise to behave

Yeaaa ok, only if they promise to behave

Some joints have what’s known as island bars, ie, a circular bar, with patrons sitting around it. This one will be the other way around fuckdat. The patrons are in the large ‘island’, and the bartenders on the outside perimeter.

Hovering around their victims..

For special drinks for special occasions, there’s a steel operating table in the centre, where aliens normally dissect abducted humans. But in this case, the ‘victim’ will get a tube down his throat, which will duly be filled with a green cocktail called Alien Urine Sample. By a Martian bartender.

For five bucks extra, we would also taze the mafucker. (An adult diaper will be provided.)

That’ll make sure he’s buzzed. Haha

Am gonna make staff dress up too; no fun otherwise. Will need a good crew.

Head bartender, Mart

Head Bartender, Mart. Multi-tasker

Cashier, Sal

Cashier, Sal, drug dealer

Floor Supervisor, Shade

Floor Supervisor, Shade. I wouldn’t fuck with him

Am also considering a small-dose cocktail (5ml) that’s real special and one-of-a-kind, coz it’s  injected into your arm. By a qualified sexy alien nurse of course.

There’s a serious lack of sci-fi-themed bars. In fact, there’s probably none at all. Uncreative pricks.

Tunes will he jazz, swing and house. No 80′s shit for sure. Location is definitely PJ. No-brainer.

Halloween at this bar will be extreme fun.

Probably be sumtin like dis:

Chief of security, Al

Chief of Security, Al

Havent finalized the food menu yet. As for bar bites, I hear fried insects are catching on.

As for the name, am thinkin of Deeps’Hit. Or Martian Hole.

Any suggestions?

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Dying for fun – what caused it? What next?

March 19th, 2014 · Gigs

It sucks when people die when they’re out to have fun. There’ve been many such incidents all around the world. Some at tourists spots (like alcohol poisoning in Bali), others at bars or clubs, and some at music festivals /raves, like the ones below:

Love Parade, Germany (2010) – 21 dead after being crushed by others in a tunnel. Love Parade has since ceased.

Electric Zoo, New York (2013) – 2 dead after taking what they thought was MDMA. It is thought they instead consumed bath salts disguised as pure MDMA crystals. Event called off.

ASOT @ Future Music Festival Asia (March 15, 2014) – 6 dead after taking what they would have thought was Ecstasy. Event called off.

ASOT, Jakarta (March 18, 2014, ie, YESTERDAY) – 3 dead after ”suspected drug overdose”

 

Fun times

Fun times

Whatever crap that killed guests on Day 2 could still be circulating on Day 3, and more could have died. By cancelling it and highlighting the deaths, hopefully those who were planning to consume a pill obtained at random would have decided otherwise, and avoided another cluster-fuck.

Sure, it sucked. Plans were made, money was spent, etc. In fact, I had a huggaz booth between Stage 2 and Stage 3 (stages that would’ve been only activated on Day 3), selling official FMFA 2014 koozies. So i lost a couple of grand. Fortunately, i was cool about it.

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(BTW if anybody is keen on scoring the above FMFA 2014 koozies as souvenirs, you can mail me via this link; going for only ten bucks a pop. Would appreciate your support.)

Or purchase online here.

I’ve been attending raves n festivals since  the early Noughties. All types – legal, illegal, in the forest, on a roof, in warehouses, on the beach, in a prison, in the hills, on monkey islands. Have never seen any tragedy. In fact, i’ve organized a few myself – no permits, no rules, no sponsors,  no bullshit. All underground.

And all were ‘safe’.

Six deaths are goddam catastrophic.

It will affect future events, funding, n sponsorship too.

Nearly 100% of chemical drugs like MDMA and LSD are increasingly cut with other substances for profit.

So what might have killed our fest-buddies on Saturday? I would speculate that it could have been either:

- bath salts disguised as MDMA

-  a bad batch cut with too much toxic material

- or it could have been mixed with PMA (para-methoxyamphetamine).

PMA-cut pills (sold as MDMA) is a much more toxic drug that mimics the effects of MDMA. It’s fuckin bad news. It’s killed dozens in UK recently. ”Victims suffer intense over-heating, become panicky, speak quickly and incomprehensibly, convulse, and die.” (Mixmag)

”This increase in serotonin, especially when PMA is in combination with other drugs like MDMA, can lead to hyperthermia (overheating) and subsequently, organ failure. Basically people are overheating and collapsing.” (The Guardian)

Also pills with PMA take longer to come on than MDMA, and has a milder effect. ”Users often think their pills are weak and take more, chasing the buzz.” Over-dosing is easy. Before they know it, they’re on the floor, dying.

OD-ing on MDMA doesnt usually kill. “To get a sense of how rarely MDMA is fatal, in 2011 the BBC reported that there were 500,000 yearly Ecstasy users in the U.K. and just 27 deaths.” (Rolling Stone Magazine)

That’s 0.05%.

 

FMFA 2014, Day 2, the day of the disaster

FMFA 2014, Day 2, the night people were dying

The narcs here are saying it’s a ”new drug”, and have speculated that it was brought in by foreigners. However the toxicology and chemist reports arent out yet.

But here are some symptoms of OD-ing.

You cant stop drugs. It will always be there. (So self-righteous dickheads, sensationalists, alarmists, and conservatives, shutdafuck up. All i’ve heard is crap and no realistic solutions. Fuckin booshit!)

So what can you / we do about it? The best method i think is harm-reduction. There are many ways to ensure what you’re getting is decent stuff – by getting it from a reputable, long-term dealer; and then testing the shit.

There are so many test kits out there which allow you to test the purity or otherwise of what you got. It takes seconds, and its mobile. Event organizers should consider bringing them in. You can get them online from Dancesafe or better still, Bunk Police, which costs only US$20 for a 50-use kit. (postage to Malaysia costs more that the product, so best to team-up and buy.) However, keep in mind that the kits are said to be not 100% accurate.

In Portugal where recreational use of the drug is decriminalized, things are different. Raves in Portugal have testing booths to test the quality of your shit. It’s unlikely that approach will be widely adopted. Coz people /societies rather live in denial.

Family members of victims (pix by mstar)

Devastated family members of victims (pix by mstar)

Users shdnt consume more than 2 pills in one session (over several hours), in case they contain PMA, and these shd be spaced out 60 minutes minimum, and not taken at once. Actually, i think one should be the limit now, with this new crap going around.

Swallowing a pill is different from drinking booze (which is natural). Once the chems are in you and your bloodstream, that’s usually that.

Also event organizers should provide water fountains for all guests, and NOT sell bottled water at ten bucks. That’s fuckin ridiculous. It’s important to stay hydrated when on drugs as your body overheats. On Friday, the bar ran out of water.

However, don’t overdo water, or risk hyponatremia. So electrolytes / isotonics are always good / better.

Groups like EDM Malaysia provide good info.

Also it’s important that everybody knows CPR so that if your friend has a cardiac arrest, YOU can execute the first-aid. You can’t really expect even on-site medics to arrive in time through such huge crowds. (Electric Zoo had 70 emergency medical technicians, 15 paramedics, five ER nurses and two physicians. Still, there were deaths)

Learn. Especially about what you’re consuming.

Look out for each other – whether or not you know each other.

Lives were lost. Let them have not died in vain. We need to learn from this, and improve things.

Party on, and party safe!

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huggaz launched

March 10th, 2014 · ~ Beer (lager / ale / stout) ~, ~ Booze news / new products ~, ~ Cool drinkers' gifts ~, ~ Drinking accessories / bar accessories ~, ~ Wine, tuak & champy ~

Booze accessory & gift brand huggaz launched last week at The Poolside Terrace at The Club, PJ.

8pm my ass. Went on till 11

8pm my ass. Went on till 11

It was the media launch actually. Kicked off at 5pm, with ice-cold beers – all served in huggaz of course, to ensure they remain ice cold.

Henry enjoying his drink (pix by Joyce Wong)

Henry enjoying his chilled drink (pix by Joyce Wong)

Didnt take many pix unfortunately. Busy partying n shit.

The beer koozies / coolers are available for both cans and bottles, while the wine carriers (Wino Series) are for single or double wine bottles. All products are made of high-quality neoprene, as opposed to soft foam, which is ol skool shit. Neoprene is the dive-suit material. Durable and efficient.

It’s good, coz there’s nothing worse than a warm beer, especially once you’ve had more than half. Unprotected beers warm up real quick in our weather.

Chillll

Chillll

Handy stuff for festivals, house parties, BBQs, events and beaches. It really says what the tagline claims – Cool till the last sip! And quality is high.

huggaz can koozies, known as the Road Series (3.5mm neoprene), are foldable ones, and come in six designs, with six new designs coming in April. They cost ten bucks a piece.

All products can be customized for events, or parties like weddings.

The merchandize are machine-washable too.

huggaz Peaceout

huggaz Peaceout

 

Che & Cubano

Che & Cubano. Lakota (double-barrel wine carrier) in the back

 

The Bomb Series are four designs meant for beer bottles. These come with zippers so they’re well-sealed.

 

Bush

Bush

 

Granat

Granat

The wine carrier bags are handy as gifts, especially when you show up at a party with wine. Keeps the wine cold for pretty long, so from fridge to commuting to consumption, it remains chilled n ready to drink. Four designs in total.

Towa from Wino Series

Towa from Wino Series

The Phat Series can koozies (thicker 5mm neoprene) will be launched at a later date.

International festival organizers Future Music and huggaz have collaborated to create two limited edition designs, which will only be sold officially at Future Music Festival Asia this week:

Night Lion

NightKing

 

Leo

FutureLeo

 

Customizations have also been done by Wine Talk Malaysia (wine carriers) and blogger Kinky Blue Fairy (can koozies).

huggaz now has five partner outlets where u’d be able to get your own piece and ”Stay Cool”:

 

1. Village Grocer, Bangsar Village, KL

- retails huggaz bottle and can koozies as well as wine carriers

2. Ben’s Independent Grocer, Publika, KL

- retails huggaz wine carriers

3. Ales & Lagers, Publika, KL

- retails huggaz bottle & can koozies

4. The Food Company, 108 Jln Burhanuddin Helmi, TTDI, Kl

- retails huggaz bottle & can koozies

5. Shiraz, 3 Jln SS3/37, University Garden, PJ

- retails huggaz bottle and can koozies as well as wine carriers

 

Or purchase  online at huggaz.com, with free shipping for RM50 & above.

All products come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

The huggaz FB page is here, while Instagram is here.

huggaz Smiley - comin next

huggaz Smiley – comin next!

 

Brain damage: 7.5/10

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