Grab a grappa

I'm always looking around for something interesting to drink (I think there's a word for that?), particularly in the hot, sticky summer when my beloved Highland Park scotch loses some of its toasty, smoky appeal. As soon as I get some free time I'm going to try out this recipe for "fake grappa," courtesy of the Village Voice:

Cherries, which are just coming into season now, are sprinkled with sugar and soaked in vodka for a few months. ... The cherries, which lose their bright color and turn brownish, absorb a dangerous amount of alcohol over the months of soaking—we call it lethal fruit, and it's always what puts me over the edge after a long, wine-fueled holiday feast.

Real grappa, of course, is made from grape leftovers and was designed as a sort of "waste not, want not" drink. In Italy they use it to chase espresso, in which case it's called "Amazza Caffè:"  literally, the "coffee killer."

Tips For Baking Perfect Cookies

Perfect cookies are within your grasp. Just grab your measuring cups and get started. Special thanks to the Institute of Culinary Education.

Netflix's Most-Binged Shows of 2017, Ranked

Netflix might know your TV habits better than you do. Recently, the entertainment company's normally tight-lipped number-crunchers looked at user data collected between November 1, 2016 and November 1, 2017 to see which series people were powering through and which ones they were digesting more slowly. By analyzing members’ average daily viewing habits, they were able to determine which programs were more likely to be “binged” (or watched for more than two hours per day) and which were more often “savored” (or watched for less than two hours per day) by viewers.

They found that the highest number of Netflix bingers glutted themselves on the true crime parody American Vandal, followed by the Brazilian sci-fi series 3%, and the drama-mystery 13 Reasons Why. Other shows that had viewers glued to the couch in 2017 included Anne with an E, the Canadian series based on L. M. Montgomery's 1908 novel Anne of Green Gables, and the live-action Archie comics-inspired Riverdale.

In contrast, TV shows that viewers enjoyed more slowly included the Emmy-winning drama The Crown, followed by Big Mouth, Neo Yokio, A Series of Unfortunate Events, GLOW, Friends from College, and Ozark.

There's a dark side to this data, though: While the company isn't around to judge your sweatpants and the chip crumbs stuck to your couch, Netflix is privy to even your most embarrassing viewing habits. The company recently used this info to publicly call out a small group of users who turned their binges into full-fledged benders:

Oh, and if you're the one person in Antarctica binging Shameless, the streaming giant just outed you, too.

Netflix broke down their full findings in the infographic below and, Big Brother vibes aside, the data is pretty fascinating. It even includes survey data on which shows prompted viewers to “Netflix cheat” on their significant others and which shows were enjoyed by the entire family.

Netflix infographic "The Year in Bingeing"


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