The latest brunch-tastic flavor from Deep Eddy Vodka is now in stores

Deep Eddy Vodka is on a roll with its new flavors.

Less than a year after the release of its peach-flavored vodka, the Dripping Springs-based distiller is now selling Deep Eddy Orange, a vodka that gets its bright orange color and flavor from fresh orange juice.

MORE: Deep Eddy Vodka expands to additional distillery in Buda

The spirit, which you can drink on the rocks or mixed into a cocktail, doesn’t have any pulp, says Deep Eddy president John Scarborough, and its the sixth flavored product on the line, in addition to peach, lemon, Ruby Red grapefruit, cranberry and sweet tea.

The suggested retail price is $19.99 for a 750 mL bottle, and you can find it in stores nationwide starting this month.

The Dripping Springs-based Deep Eddy Vodka has just released its latest flavor, orange. Contributed by Deep Eddy Vodka

The Buzz Mill to start offering Voodoo Doughnuts at both locations

Photo by Rodolfo Gonzalez / American-Statesman. The 24-hour Buzz Mill off Riverside Drive is now about to sell Voodoo Doughtnuts, in addition to beer, coffee and food.
Photo by Rodolfo Gonzalez / American-Statesman. The 24-hour Buzz Mill off Riverside Drive is now about to sell Voodoo Doughtnuts, in addition to beer, coffee and food.

The Austin outpost of Voodoo Doughnuts will soon not be the only place where locals can get their hands on the sweet treats. Starting tomorrow morning, the Buzz Mill, a 24-hour coffee shop and bar off Riverside Drive, is going to have them, too.

And once the second location of the Buzz Mill opens off South Congress Avenue — right next door to the Infinite Monkey Theorem winery — the doughnuts will be available there as well.

Among the Voodoo Doughnuts options at the Buzz Mill: the Voodoo Doll, a raspberry-filled doughnut with chocolate frosting and a pretzel stake; the Bacon Maple Bar, a doughnut topped with bacon maple frosting; and the Diablos Rex, a chocolate-cake doughnut with chocolate frosting, red sprinkles, a vanilla pentagram and chocolate chips in the middle.

As if that’s not enough for our stomachs to handle, the Buzz Mill is also going to have an array of vegan options that include “fruit-cake doughnuts, which come with banana, applesauce, or pumpkin choices that are topped with maple frosting, chocolate frosting, toasted or flake coconut, Oreo’s, Chico sticks, powdered sugar, cinnamon, or sprinkles,” according to a news release.

You can thank Jason Sabala, owner of the Buzz Mill, for satisfying your sweet tooth at any hour of the day. A longtime friend of Voodoo’s owners, Cat Daddy and Tres Shannon, he was elated when he found out they were opening another location of the Portland-based doughnut shop here. People in the downtown area, he said in the release, had been needing “a day and night option for folks with a sweet tooth, and there’s no better choice than Voodoo.”

The second location of the Buzz Mill, which should be opened in February, will be at 121 Pickle Rd. It’ll offer much of the same as the original place at 1505 Town Creek Dr., from live music to the infused spirits menu to the separate study room. Plus, Sabala is hoping to spread the lumberjack vibe of the Buzz Mill to other cities, most notably San Marcos, later this year and next.

Opal Divine’s drinking pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Throughout the remainder of this month, local grill Opal Divine’s is offering a couple of rosy-colored cocktails to patrons at all three locations to raise money for the Breast Cancer Resource Center of Texas.

Photo by Arianna Auber / American-Statesman. The prickly pear margarita is one of the cocktails on special this month to raise money for the Breast Cancer Resource Center of Texas.
Photo by Arianna Auber / American-Statesman. The prickly pear margarita is one of the cocktails on special this month to raise money for the Breast Cancer Resource Center of Texas.

A portion of the proceeds from the Prickly Pear ‘Rita and the Divine Paloma, made with Austin-based Dulce Vida Tequila, will be donated to the nonprofit, which holds a special place in the heart of Opal Divine’s co-owner Michael Parker after his wife, Susan, overcame breast cancer with the support of the resource center.

“We’ve been fundraising for the Breast Cancer Resource Centers of Texas for years now,” Parker said in a press release, noting that during his and his wife’s struggle with cancer, “the BCRC was the first light we saw shining out of the end of that tunnel. We can never express enough gratitude for that.”

The experience was difficult for him, but he likes to keep Opal Divine’s “Drink Pink” month light and fun, according to the press release, by partnering with Dulce Vida to offer the paloma, a tequila and grapefruit drink, in 16 oz., 32 oz. and 54 oz. glasses. During October, these sizes are known at Opal Divine’s as B Cup, C Cup and DD Cup.

It’s a bit of “cheeky humor and joy,” Parker said in the press release, “to help fight this deadly disease.”

“Breast cancer is a heavy subject, but this is something people can feel good about. It’s fun,” he said in the press release.

Another benefit for the Breast Cancer Resource Centers of Texas takes place on Halloween, when the Penn Field location of Opal Divine’s will play host to costumed Austinites participating in the restaurant’s annual Skaraoke, a karaoke contest. Opal’s will have prizes for the best song and costume combination, so plan ahead. The event runs from 7 to 11 p.m. at 3601 S. Congress Ave.

For more information, visit

Interactive assigns each U.S. city an ‘Oktoberfest’ score

Is Austin a beer city? If so, how do our beer-drinking ways compare to others?

Photo by Renee Brock
Photo by Renee Brock

A new interactive by Esri, a geo-mapping and data site, seeks to answer this question as well as offer some perspective on Austin’s overall drinking culture.

(What on earth did you think an “Oktoberfest score” could possibly be?)

Plug in your zipcode or “Austin, TX” to explore all the demographics data Esri used to assign the scores. Esri assigned Austin a “5.” For reference, the highest score, assigned to Chevy Chase Village, Md., was a “10.” The highest score in Texas, a 9.2, went to Montgomery.

According to Esri’s data, which is compiled some from unnamed, mystery data set, Austin households. which Esri identifies are mostly single-person households, on average spend $125 per year on beer. Note these numbers don’t include beer purchased at liquor or grocery stores.

In 2014, the Statesman found that Travis County sold an average of $410.05 worth of alcohol per person per year, so Esri’s number could add up if you take into account wine and other alcoholic drinks.

For comparison, Austin household spend about $32 more per year on beer than San Antonio, $41 more than San Marcos and $15 more than both Houston and Dallas.



West campus hangout named one of the best college bars in America

The food and drink website The Daily Meal isn’t the first one to round up the best college bars in America.

Mike Sutter/American-Statesman.
Mike Sutter/American-Statesman.

Business Insider and Thrillist have previously undertaken the daunting task of naming the best places for American college students to drink cheaply, root for their team and have memorable — or not-so-memorable — nights.

West campus favorite Cain and Abel’s made it to all of the above lists, debuting most recently at No. 16 on The Daily Meal’s 2015 national round up.

The bar is home to Texas Tea (a riff on a Long Island), the H-Bomb as well as daily rotating food and drink specials.

Cain and Abel’s opened in 1991, but the space on the corner of Rio Grande and 24th Street has been feeding and quenching the thirst of Longhorns for much longer: Between 1980 and 1989, the bar was known as Abel Moses.

Today Cain and Abel’s sister locations include Abel’s on the Lake and Abel’s North — but neither have quite the same quintessential college vibe as the original.

Oskar Blues to open new location in Austin next year

Contributed by Oskar Blues. A new location of Oskar Blues is being built in Austin, and it’ll have a focus on live music in keeping with the city’s quirky spirit.

A big Colorado brewery, after expanding a few years ago to North Carolina, is now coming to Austin, too — with plans to open a brewery, taproom and live music venue in the north side of town.

Oskar Blues Grill & Brew plans to open a new location at 10420 Metric Blvd. in April 2016, aiming to brew the full lineup of cans and draft beer, according to a press release.

“North Carolina and Colorado are filled with amazing communities and experiences mingled with live music and… great craft beer scenes,” Oskar Blues founder Dale Katechis said in the press release. “The passion and rebellious nature of Austin locals, along with the food, craft beer and live music scenes create a vibe that already feels like home.”

The massive 50,000 sq. ft. space will start with an initial capacity of 30,000 bbls per year — but can potentially reach a 100,000 bbl capacity. That’s going to be a lot of beer.

Oskar Blues opened a little under 18 years ago in a small Colorado town and expanded east to North Carolina in 2012. It’ll be the first craft brewery to build additional locations in Austin. (Atwater Brewery, based in Detroit, has had plans for the past couple years to expand here, too, but that’s taking awhile to get underway.)

For more information, visit @OskarBluesATX on Twitter.

Studies: If you live in Texas, you’re probably drinking Bud Light or Jack Daniel’s

You might want to put those pinkies down the next time you’re on Rainey Street. According to two studies, most Texans might not be drinking craft beers or artisanal cocktails when they’re out at the bars.

(AP Photo/Toby Talbot)
(AP Photo/Toby Talbot)

According to Business Insider, one study calls Jack Daniel’s the most popular hard liquor in Texas, citing not-quite-airtight figures from a social app called “BARTRENDr.” The article says that the app company “analyzed data from its 700,000 users to determine the most popular liquor brand in every state based on posts and photos of the liquors its users like to drink,” so the results would definitely (not) pass peer review.

(American-Statesman file)
(American-Statesman file)

On the hoppier side of the booze spectrum, data crawlers Priceonomics published a study on their blog last month claiming Bud Light is the most commonly available beer at bars in Texas (not Lone Star or Shiner like one might assume/earnestly hope). This study, also to be swallowed cautiously, used state-by-state bar menu data from a website called BeerMenus to arrive at its conclusion. Priceonomics also drills a little further than the liquor study with information for select cities. Apparently, the most commonly available beer on Austin menus is Real Ale Fireman’s #4, according to the study’s data set. As far as other local beer stereotypes go: Only 14 percent of the Austin bars considered offer the hipster-favorite brew Pabst Blue Ribbon, and our fair burg didn’t even place on the “Beer Snob Cities” list. Blame that abundant availability of macrobrews statewide, maybe?

Now if you will excuse us, we Austinites have a few flights of mezcal and some homebrewed IPAs to enjoy.

[h/t Houston Chronicle and also Houston Chronicle]

Easy Tiger recipe showcases Dallas-made bourbon

Austin is far from the only Texas city producing top craft spirits. In Dallas, a pair of whiskey aficionados have been making waves with their three types of whiskey.

The Herman Marshall whiskey brand, made by Dallas Distilleries, is named after the founders of the spirit company, Marshall Louis and Herman Beckley, who met at a Starbucks years ago and noticed their hobby of distilling spirits could turn into a business. They decided to specialize in whiskey (they’re the first distillers in Dallas County since Prohibition to produce a bourbon) and now have a rye, a bourbon and a limited-release single malt that’s slowly been added to store shelves in the past month. These are all sold in about 1,600 locations all over Texas.

Herman Marshall Bourbon, the first bourbon to be made in Dallas County since Prohibition, is in Easy Tiger's Gentleman Caller.
Herman Marshall Texas Bourbon, the first bourbon to be made in Dallas County since Prohibition, is in Easy Tiger’s Gentleman Caller.

For this cocktail recipe from Austin bar Easy Tiger, the bourbon’s peppery notes are particularly present to balance out the ginger liqueur and the orange bitters. It’s a bold, boozy drink that showcases the best qualities of the Herman Marshall whiskey, a corn-and-barley distillation aged in new white oak barrels.

Gentleman Caller

1 1/2 oz. Herman Marshall bourbon

1 oz. Domaine de Canton Ginger Liqueur

1 dash orange bitters

Orange peel

Combine ingredients in an ice-filled shaker and stir. Strain into ice-filled Old Fashioned glass. Garnish with an orange peel.

— Easy Tiger

Rainey Street’s No Va celebrating Repeal Day

No Va is offering $10 cocktails Friday in celebration of Repeal Day, when Prohibition was abolished on Dec. 5, 1933. Photo contributed by No Va.
No Va is offering $10 cocktails Friday in celebration of Repeal Day, when Prohibition was abolished on Dec. 5, 1933.
Photo contributed by No Va.

It’s been 81 years since the U.S. realized what a horrible mistake outlawing alcohol had been — and to commemorate the official repeal of Prohibition on Dec. 5, 1933, No Va Kitchen and Bar on Rainey Street is offering six $10 cocktails on Friday. They’re primarily, it’s worth noting, all classics that bartenders and home drinkers alike have been mixing up both prior to and during the days when bootleggers smuggled alcohol across state lines and savvy party-goers snuck into speakeasies.

The Rob Roy, for instance, is a drink that originated as far back as 1894 in New York’s Waldorf Astoria Hotel; the Jack Rose gained attention after being mentioned in Ernest Hemingway’s 1926 novel “The Sun Also Rises.”

Here’s the list of Repeal Day cocktails No Va will be offering starting at 6 p.m. Friday.

Hanky Panky: Plymouth Gin, Carpano Antica and Fernet Branca

Tuxedo #2: Ransom Old Tom Gin, Dolin Sweet Vermouth, Luxardo Maraschino, orange bitters and a Tenneyson Absinthe Royale rinse

Jack Rose: Laird’s Bonded Applejack, house-made grenadine and lime

Daiquiri de Banane: Papa’s Pilar Blonde Rum, Giffard’s Banane Liqueur, Liber & Co. Gomme syrup and lime

Rob Roy: Dewar’s White Label Whisky, house blend sweet vermouth, Dale DeGroff pimento bitters

The Liberal: Rittenhouse Rye, Carpano Antica, house-made Amer and orange bitters

For more information, visit

Deep Eddy Vodka rolling out new flavor this month

Although Deep Eddy Vodka co-founder Chad Auler is always playing around with new flavors, not all of them end up in bottles sold across the country. But the upcoming Deep Eddy Lemon caught on with him and others at Deep Eddy as a refreshing new option, and it’s releasing at the Dripping Springs distillery later this month and on store shelves in January.

Deep Eddy Lemon is the latest flavored vodka for the local distillery to release. It'll hit store shelves in January but is available at the distillery this month.
Deep Eddy Lemon is the latest flavored vodka for the local distillery to release. It’ll hit store shelves in January but is available at the distillery this month.

And like past Deep Eddy flavors, this one incorporates a natural ingredient that’s always been traditional in vodka drinks. Deep Eddy Lemon, featuring real lemon juice and Texas aquifer water, is “like biting into a sweet, ripe lemon or sipping on your grandma’s homemade lemonade. It’s got tartness balanced with sweetness,” Auler said.

He and Deep Eddy Vodka CEO Eric Dopkins knew going into production of the vodka that citrus-flavored vodka is common for many vodka producers to make, but they have an easy edge, he said, because of their focus on all-natural ingredients.

“The citrus-flavored vodka category is a huge category, so when we look at the others, to my knowledge we’re one of the very few or maybe the only one that uses real lemon juice,” he said. “It’s the same with our other products. We couldn’t find anyone out there using real ruby red grapefruit juice, cranberry juice and now lemon juice, and the difference is notable.”

Deep Eddy already has a bevy of cocktail recipes ready to start making at the distillery (which opened in the Dripping Springs area two months ago) once Deep Eddy Lemon is bottled. Auler said Lemon can be enjoyed very simply: “This one with soda will be like a boozy lemonade with a little bit of carbonation.”

Here are a couple of those recipes if you want to get a bit more complex with your cocktail.

Tiki Takeover

1.5 oz. Deep Eddy Lemon Vodka

.5 oz. Cointreau

.5 oz. Finest Call Orgeat Syrup

.5 oz. lemon juice

Shake ingredients over ice. Pour into rocks glass.

— Deep Eddy Vodka

Down Thyme

1.5 oz. Deep Eddy Lemon Vodka

.5 oz. fresh lemon juice

.5 oz. honey thyme simple syrup (see below)

2 oz. Prosecco.

Shake the vodka, lemon juice and honey thyme simple syrup over ice. Top off with Prosecco and strain into martini glass. Garnish with a sprig of thyme.

Honey Thyme Simple Syrup

1 cup honey

1 cup water

8 to 10 sprigs of thyme

Bring honey and water to a boil; then, let simmer in a pan for 20 minutes.

— Deep Eddy Vodka