The Art of Drinking Vermouth

Vermouth is often used in various cocktails because of its aroma and flavor. It’s also a popular fortified wine because of the roots, herbs, flowers, and bark that are added to it, but what do you really know about vermouth and what it tastes like if drank on its own?

How Vermouth is Made

Vermouth is a type of Moscato wine in Italy that is flavored with tree bark, saffron, anise, cinnamon, chamomile, and even absinthe to make it sweet or semisweet. More accurately though, vermouth is a fortified aperitif wine, which means that its base is either mistelle (white grape juice or brandy and fermented white wine) or white wine. Unlike Moscato wine, however, vermouth contains more alcohol because it’s fortified. Using the base of white wine or mistelle, distilled alcohol is added, usually using brandy, to raise the proof.

This process is what makes up the fortification of vermouth. Next, the base is aromatized using substances made from plants. This could be a mixture of spices, herbs, roots, seeds, flowers, and others. The use of botanicals give vermouth its color and flavor. Most of the vermouth today contain wormwood, from which its name is derived, while the color caramel comes from the sugar.

The Benefits of Vermouth

Whether you prefer the pale, dry and bitter vermouth or the red and sweet vermouth, when consumed in moderation, it is good for you because it promotes food digestion and improves appetite. In some cases, 50 grams of vermouth can even help someone recover from food poisoning or gastroenteritis. Besides being a good antiseptic, too, the herbs and spices it contains can help you relax after a stressful day at work. Some people use a mixture of vermouth and 2 tablespoons of honey to relive cold and sore throat. It can also be mixed with aloe juice and honey to relieve stomach ulcer.

Vermouth Food Pairings

Because of the diverse flavors of vermouth, there are a lot of options for food pairings depending on its characteristic taste. Aromatic French vermouth are best paired with cheeses because they complement the vermouth’s nutty flavors. While dry vermouth like Italian varieties are best paired with smelly cheeses. However, most vermouth will go well with chicken, scallops, shrimp, mushrooms, beef steak, mussels, salmon, and pancetta.

The Best Vermouth Cocktails

Try these vermouth cocktails with your friends:

  • Negroni: 1 ounce sweet vermouth, 1 ounce Campari, 1 ounce gin, and citrus essence
  • Black Dog: ½ ounce dry vermouth and 3 ounces rum
  • Vampire’s Kiss: ½ ounce dry vermouth, 2 ounces vodka, ½ ounce dry gin, 1 tablespoon tequila, 2 ounces tomato juice, and 1 pinch salt
  • Manhattan:1 ounce sweet vermouth, 2 ounces bourbon, 1 dash orange bitters, 2 dashes Angostura bitters, and brandied cherry for garnish
  • Rob Roy: 1 ounce sweet vermouth, 2 ounces blended scotch whiskey, 2 dashes angostura bitters, and lemon peel for garnish
  • Vermouth Cassis: 1 ½ ounce dry vermouth, ¾ ounce crème de cassis, and club soda
  • Carpano-Rita: ½ ounce sweet vermouth, 1 ½ ounces tequila, ¾ ounces lemon juice, and ¼ ounce agave syrup

Singapore’s Hainanese Chicken Rice

Trust me, one article is not enough to know about one of the most celebrated dish by not just the residents of Singapore but also tourists is the legendary mouth-watering all-Asian experience, the Hainanese Chicken Rice. I know what you are thinking, how is chicken and rice such an attractive dish? Well, for those of you who haven’t tasted Hainanese Chicken Rice, it is acceptable that you cannot fathom the taste of this amazingly tender dish. What better way to describe an Asian dish than with steamed chicken and rice right?

Although very well celebrated in Singapore, this dish does not actually come from Singapore itself. This dish originates all the way from Hong Kong and was brought to Singapore by the Chinese who slowly started to migrate. Chefs from all around the world can be found in Singapore as they have one of the most diverse cuisines around Asia. Although diverse, Singapore never fails to pay attention to the small details in the quality of their servings which makes it hard to say that the food you are eating does not taste authentic.

Finding this dish is no problem at all as almost every hawker center in Singapore has at least three stalls selling this type of dish. Now how about the price? Well, depending on your location and how near it is to the different malls, the price of this dish may vary but to play it safe, this dish may vary from three to twenty Singaporean dollars. The farther away you are from a mall or the smaller and more residential the neighborhood is, the lower the price of this dish may be.

Now, why is Hainanese Chicken Rice one of the best dishes you can find in Singapore? Because of the rice itself! The rice is not just any ordinary rice but is cooked with the broth used to steam the chicken and what makes the taste really sink in is not just the ingredients used but the time dedicated into cooking this meal. The chicken broth is made sure to be treated with utmost priority as it is the main ingredient in the rice. This dish is usually served with cut cucumbers which really give it a luscious and brighter flavor every time you eat the chicken with the rice.

Hainanese Chicken Rice is just one of the many different dishes to fall in love with. Never be too shy to try out something new.

4 Private Jet App Services in Singapore

Have you ever jokingly wish that you could book an Uber from Singapore to Hong Kong, but rather than cab, you get a private jet instead? What if we tell you that you can? Yes, that’s right. Through mobile app services, you can conveniently book a private jet to take you to places. Some of these jets may even cost you lesser than flying on a commercial flight. Through just a click of a button, you won’t have to worry about crying babies or having small talks with an annoying passenger seating next to you. Check out these apps for a flamboyant ride for your next summer getaway.

Victor
Victor, known as the ‘uber for private jets’ is a popular private jet hire service that lets you compare prices and book private jets. This booking app allows travellers to use the app on both web and mobile. One great selling point of Victor is that it provides total transparency on operator and aircraft details, offering total financial protection to its clients.

Javajet Asia
A Jakarta-based company, Javajet Asia offers private jet services in the continent, with an array of modern aircrafts. If flying from Singapore, you can fly either with Gulfstream 550 or Raytheon Beechjet 400A. Some of their clients are the head of states, Hollywood stars, royal families and business tycoons—so you can be a member of their elite club as well.

JetSmarter
Another app for hiring private jets, JetSmarter connects passengers and aircraft carriers to chartered flights, offering more than 3,000 aircraft for booking. All it takes is to download the app and sign-up. One of the app’s key features is the JetShuttle, where you can share an aircraft with other passengers. This feature allows you to book a seat on an already-scheduled flight or create a shared charter where you allow other passengers to join you. You will be surprised that a seat on this type of private jet flight can cost lesser than a commercial flight.

Privatefly
With a network of more than 8,000 private jets worldwide, you can certainly fly privately and luxuriously anywhere in the world. This application features an empty leg availability, wherein the jet is booked for one-way only and have to return to its home base empty. The prices for empty leg trips are usually much lower than a regular private jet flight, since operators often offer heavily discounted flight prices for these empty trips.

Flying to your next vacation destination is now made easier. Download and use any of these apps to book your private jet, so you can travel in style, comfort and luxury.

4 Book Havens for Bookworms

Books are a delightful past time. In a pinch, they can also make for great gifts to give to friends and loved ones. There are a lot of bookshops here in SG, some of them large and well-known, some of them small and niche. Here are some of them.

1. BooksActually
BooksActually has a large selection with a lot of different genres that you could choose from. Their selection ranges from popular literary works, to obscure rare editions. Home to the largest collection of Singapore literary titles, you could be sure that every bookworm has something for them. Even if you don’t find anything that interests you, those in the mood for adventure will delight in their book vending machines, where you can let fate decide on what book you’ll be reading today.

BooksActually is located at 9 Yong Siak Street and is open on Sundays and Mondays from 10 am to 6 pm, and on Tuesdays to Saturdays from 10 am to 8 pm.

2. Kinokuniya
Kinokuniya is the biggest bookstore here in Singapore, usually attracting more than 200,000 visitors per month. They stock books from many genres, from fiction to non-fiction. They also have magazines, CDs, and stationaries. Starting out as a Japanese bookstore in 1983, Kinokuniya still carries Japanese merchandise until today; fans of Japanese culture can find Japanese books, stationery and magazines here in Kinokuniya.

Kinokuniya has four locations: Ngee Ann City, Liang Court, Bugis Junction, and JEM.

3. Times Bookstore
Times Bookstore is another major book retail chain here in SG. They offer books on a wide selection and specialize in travel books like guidebooks, travel maps, and travel-related items. Those who want to immerse themselves in the literary scene of Singapore would be delighted in the number of events that Times Bookstore often hosts, like meet the author sessions, performance storytelling, and book signing sessions.

4. Littered With Books
Littered With Books has a quirky, off-beat atmosphere that bookworms are sure to delight in. Located in a small and quaint two-storey space, Littered With Books is an inviting space. You can peruse its shelves and choose from different categories, with its fiction selection on the first floor and its non-fiction selection on its second floor. They have seating available for those who would like to sit down and read and have friendly staff members to whom you could ask for assistance and book recommendations.

Luxury Gym in Singapore  

 

Fitness is important here in Singapore. This is the reason why many fitness clubs mushroomed over the years. In almost every corner, we will see fitness clubs – some are exclusive, some are not. The membership will depend but many people here prefer exclusive fitness clubs.

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The new entrant is the Gravity Club which is still under construction by the way but has made a lot of noises. The operator is Fitness First. The club will boast of invite-only membership. This means that only 999 members will be given invitation to experience it.

Here’s a peek of the anticipated Gravity Club:

  • Budget: The club has a budget of $9.5 million. The building is nestled in a 17,000 square foot area. Singapore was selected as the testing ground for this kind of concept knowing that it is a wealthy financial hub.

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  • Amenities and services: The area will be open from six in the morning to eleven in the evening. There are personal trainers, nutrition programs, alternative therapies and customized vitamin supplements. It does not end there because the gym developed mobile application for members so they can track the progress of their health and schedule appointments.
  • Cost: As mentioned earlier, the fitness club is exclusive for 999 individuals only. The one-time joining cost is S$3,000 plus a monthly fee of S$600.

The fitness club can help executive meet their fitness goals. Executives are very busy every day that they do not think about their health. They have to remember that a balanced lifestyle is vital for optimum performance.

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Australia’s Not-So-Conventional Gift to Singapore  

 

On May 20, 2015, Australia gave us a list of their gifts in celebration of our 50th anniversary. Their gifts are also the celebration of Australia-Singapore diplomatic ties for 50 years.  Many people have different views about the gifts. Some thought that the gifts are cool others say that they are creepy. For those who did not like it, we cannot just return it because the gifts are given with good intention.

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One of the gifts is a roaming puppet performance. The puppet performance is called The Snuff Puppets Human Body Parts. Actually, the roaming body parts have been the talk of the country. The performances are both fascinating and weird.

Disembodied human parts were walking in the streets. Imagine looking at an eye or a mouth sneaking up on residents or at nearby malls and MRT stations. The human parts were not just there to scare or tickle people. Actually, there was a performance and no matter what we think they were, it was definitely a surreal experience to many.c0d03780-006b-11e5-bff1-cf392459c67d_20150522_154426

The disembodied human parts – eye, mouth, hand, foot, ear and nose performed at heartlands on May 22 to May 25, 2015. The sights of walking body parts were unusual because we do not see a lot of this here but nevertheless, it was fun. On top of the puppets, Australia will also organize fifty barbeque nights simultaneously in June. This is something to look forward to.

The body parts and other activities are part of the “50 Bridges” launched by Lawrence Wong, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth and Julie Bishop, Foreign Minister of Australia.62a3a2a0-006b-11e5-82bf-77fa269c4272_20150522_154028