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10 Celebrity Refreshments

Advertisers know that the taste of a better lifestyle will sell products. Celebrities learn this as well, and can make a killing putting their name on something that can impart even a little of their charm on a fan. These beverages just might be the perfect gift for a fan that you know.

1. Marilyn Manson Absinthe: Mansinthe

Musician Marilyn Manson, a longtime absinthe fan, partnered with Markus Lion and Swiss distiller Matter-Luginbühl in 2007 to create his signature liquor called Mansinthe. Manson took a hands-on approach to the development of the product and tested it for quite some time before approving the final product. Reviewers rate it between average and rather good.

2. The Situation's Low-Calorie Devotion Vodka

Making a "health drink" out of vodka is an exercise in cognitive dissonance, but then again, so is "reality" TV. Devotion Vodka resulted when New Jersey native Drew Adelman combined vodka with a protein supplement and formed a partnership with Mike Sorrentino to market the drink. Sorrentino goes by the name "The Situation" in his role in the TV series Jersey Shore. He also manages a fitness club. Devotion Vodka is promoted as low calorie, sugar-free, and gluten-free. The tagline for the vodka tells us it is "infused with casein" (brand name PeptoPro®). Casein is a material derived from milk that is used to make pizza cheese, paint, glue, and protein supplements.

3. Ron de Jeremy: the Adult Rum

After 30 years and a couple of thousand films, Ron Jeremy is the best known man in the adult film industry. You may recognize him from mainstream films as well. Now that name (and face) is on bottles of rum. Ron de Jeremy comes in two forms, regular rum and Ron de Jeremy Spiced, with extra flavor. Both are advertised with the tagline "the adult rum." As if there were any other kind. The product came about as a joke, according to Jouko Laune and Olli Hietalahti of One Eyed Spirits, which produces the liquor. "Ron" means rum in Spanish, and the name Ron Jeremy opens up a world of puns to fuel advertising and word-of-mouth. It's a gift that sends an extra message in addition to "I know you like rum."

4. Dan Aykroyd's Crystal Head Vodka

Crystal Head on Bar

Crystal Head Vodka looks exactly as you would expect: a bottle of vodka in a glass skull. Crystal head is a collaboration between actor Dan Aykroyd and artist John Alexander, who are both interested in the paranormal aspects of crystal skulls. The vodka itself is filtered through quartz crystals. The bottle actually came before the vodka -in fact, the original plan was to put tequila in it! Aykroyd already had a deal to import Patrone tequila to Canada, so vodka was selected instead. That it was launched in 2008 was supposedly unrelated to the 2008 movie Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Those who have paid around $60 a bottle tend to treasure the skull more than the spirit. Image by Flickr user Kevin Takaki.

5. Justin Timberlake's 901 Silver Tequila

Launched in 2009, 901 Silver Tequila is named for the area code of Justin Timberlake's hometown, Memphis Tennessee, but it is marketed to remind people of 9:01 PM, the time to drink tequila. Timberlake's name does not appear on the bottle, but he founded the product, which is manufactured by Tequilera Newton in the heart of Jalisco, Mexico.

6. Willie Nelson's Old Whiskey River Bourbon

One of Willie Nelson's most popular hit songs is "Whiskey River," which inspired the name of his Old Whiskey River Bourbon, launched in 2001. Produced by Heaven Hill Distilleries in Kentucky, the 6-year-old Bourbon is distributed by Drinks America. Each bottle comes with a guitar pick, and part f the proceeds go to Farm Aid.

7. Vince Neil's Tres Rios Tequila

Vince Neil of the band Mötley Crüe introduced his Tres Rios Tequila in 2007. Although the Tres Rios site is no longer there (but still linked on Neil's website), the tequila is still sold in stores.

8. Danny DeVito's Limoncello

Limoncello is an Italian dessert liqueur made from lemons. Danny DeVito's Premium Limoncello may have come about as a joke after he (jokingly?) blamed a strange 2006 performance on a TV talk show on too many limoncellos. It was only a few months later that his personal brand of the drink debuted. It is possible that the entire event was a marketing ploy, but most likely it's an example of life handing him lemons and DeVito making limoncello out of it. It compares well with other brands of limoncello, but comes in a frustratingly opaque bottle. The original website promoting the product is either defunct or under construction, but it is still available at a liquor store near you.

9. Two if by Tea, from Rush Limbaugh

In June of 2011, conservative pundit Rush Limbaugh introduced a bottled sweet tea called Two If By Tea. The product site is full of Tea Party and tea puns. The tea comes in regular and diet plus raspberry flavor -no alcohol here. The drink is only available online, but you can order in large quantities.

10. AC/DC The Wine

Australian band AC/DC launched their signature wine collection last August, which includes several varieties: Back in Black Shiraz, Highway to Hell Cabernet Sauvignon, Hells Bells Sauvignon Blanc, and You Shook Me All Night Long Moscato. The labels for each depict a different AC/DC album cover. They are a product of Warburn Estate winery. Like the song says, "Have a Drink on Me."

The Rolling Stones, KISS, Motorhead, and Whitesnake have all released wine collections. In fact, signature wine is such a popular investment choice for celebrities that I decided to stop the list here. You can learn more in the post 10 Celebrities Who Own Wineries. I also passed over quite a few celebrity beverages that appeared to be simply endorsement deals for existing products. Learn about the founders of some classic potables in The Men Behind Your Favorite Liquors.

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science
Today's Wine Glasses Are Almost Seven Times Larger Than They Were in 1700
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Holiday party season (a.k.a. hangover season) is in full swing. While you likely have no one to blame but yourself for drinking that second (or third) pour at the office soiree, your glassware isn't doing you any favors—especially if you live in the UK. Vino vessels in England are nearly seven times larger today than they were in 1700, according to a new study spotted by Live Science. These findings were recently published in the English medical journal The BMJ.

Researchers at the University of Cambridge measured more than 400 wineglasses from the past three centuries to gauge whether glass size affects how much we drink. They dug deep into the history of parties past, perusing both the collections of the Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology at the University of Oxford and the Royal Household's assemblage of glassware (a new set is commissioned for each monarch). They also scoured a vintage catalog, a modern department store, and eBay for examples.

After measuring these cups, researchers concluded that the average wineglass in 1700 held just 2.2 fluid ounces. For comparison's sake, that's the size of a double shot at a bar. Glasses today hold an average of 15.2 fluid ounces, even though a standard single serving size of wine is just 5 ounces.

BMJ infographic detailing increases in wine glass size from 1700 to 2017
BMJ Publishing group Ltd.

Advances in technology and manufacturing are partly to blame for this increase, as is the wine industry. Marketing campaigns promoted the beverage as it increasingly became more affordable and available for purchase, which in turn prompted aficionados to opt for larger pours. Perhaps not surprisingly, this bigger-is-better mindset was also compounded by American drinking habits: Extra-large wineglasses became popular in the U.S. in the 1990s, prompting overseas manufacturers to follow suit.

Wine consumption in both England and America has risen dramatically since the 1960s [PDF]. Cambridge researchers noted that their study doesn't necessarily prove that the rise of super-sized glassware has led to this increase. But their findings do fit a larger trend: previous studies have found that larger plate size can increase food consumption. This might be because they skew our sense of perception, making us think we're consuming less than we actually are. And in the case of wine, in particular, oversized glasses could also heighten our sensory enjoyment, as they might release more of the drink's aroma.

“We cannot infer that the increase in glass size and the rise in wine consumption in England are causally linked,” the study's authors wrote. “Nor can we infer that reducing glass size would cut drinking. Our observation of increasing size does, however, draw attention to wine glass size as an area to investigate further in the context of population health.”

[h/t Live Science]

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History
84 Years Ago Today: Goodbye Prohibition!
A huge queue outside the Board of Health offices in Centre Street, New York, for licenses to sell alcohol shortly after the repeal of prohibition. The repeal of prohibition was a key policy of Franklin Roosevelt's government as it allowed the government an opportunity to raise tax revenues at a time of economic hardship.
A huge queue outside the Board of Health offices in Centre Street, New York, for licenses to sell alcohol shortly after the repeal of prohibition. The repeal of prohibition was a key policy of Franklin Roosevelt's government as it allowed the government an opportunity to raise tax revenues at a time of economic hardship.
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It was 84 years ago today that the Twenty-First Amendment to the Constitution was ratified, repealing the earlier Amendment that declared the manufacture, sale, and transport of alcohol illegal in the United States. Prohibition was over! Booze that had been illegal for 13 years was suddenly legal again, and our long national nightmare was finally over.


A giant barrel of beer, part of a demonstration against prohibition in America.
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Prohibition of alcohol was not a popular doctrine. It turned formerly law-abiding citizens into criminals. It overwhelmed police with enforcement duties and gave rise to organized crime. In cities like Milwaukee and St. Louis, the dismantling of breweries left thousands of people unemployed.


Photograph courtesy of the Boston Public Library

Homemade alcohol was often dangerous and some people died from drinking it. Some turned to Sterno or industrial alcohol, which was dangerous and sometimes poisoned by the government to discourage drinking. State and federal governments were spending a lot of money on enforcement, while missing out on taxes from alcohol.


New York City Deputy Police Commissioner John A. Leach (right) watches agents pour liquor into sewer following a raid during the height of Prohibition.

The midterm elections of 1930 saw the majority in Congress switch from Republican to Democratic, signaling a shift in public opinion about Prohibition as well as concerns about the depressed economy. Franklin Roosevelt, who urged repeal, was elected president in 1932. The Twenty-first Amendment to the Constitution was proposed by Congress in February of 1933, the sole purpose of which was to repeal the Eighteenth Amendment establishing Prohibition.


American men guarding their private beer brewing hide-out, during Prohibition.
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With passage of the Constitutional Amendment to repeal Prohibition a foregone conclusion, a huge number of businessmen lined up at the Board of Health offices in New York in April of 1933 to apply for liquor licenses to be issued as soon as the repeal was ratified.

The Amendment was ratified by the states by the mechanism of special state ratifying conventions instead of state legislatures. Many states ratified the repeal as soon as conventions could be organized. The ratifications by the required two-thirds of the states was achieved on December 5, 1933, when conventions in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Utah agreed to repeal Prohibition through the Amendment.


Workmen unloading crates of beer stacked at a New York brewery shortly after the repeal of Prohibition.
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A brewery warehouse in New York stacked crates past the ceiling to satisfy a thirsty nation after the repeal of Prohibition.


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Liquor wouldn't officially be legal until December 15th, but Americans celebrated openly anyway, and in most places, law enforcement officials let them.

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