Stirio: An Extra Hand in the Kitchen

stirio-2-4If you’re like most of us, you eat out more than you should. Is it because you can’t cook? No. It’s mostly just a general laziness. Who has time to stand over the stove stirring pasta for ten minutes when there is an Xbox to be played or blog posts to write? Stirio is a nifty invention that takes the busy work out of cooking. Its smart blade adjusts to any size pot, excluding the giant soup pots restaurants use. The rechargeable motor holds enough charge to stir continuously for an hour and this new model of Stirio is extremely quiet. Now if only there was a robot that did the rest of the cooking too. $62 unikia.com

Coil: Easy Iced Coffee in Minutes

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It may seem a little strange to drink iced coffee when there’s snow on the ground, but fun fact; drinking a cold beverage actually helps you adapt to the frigid air. Coil is a new Kickstarter product that will turn your piping hot coffee ice cold in under five minutes. The great thing about Coil is it doesn’t ruin your coffee by watering it down with ice. Instead the coffee travels through copper coil which is surrounded by ice, insulated by the ceramic shell. A nifty little device to be sure and a solid alternative to shelling out a couple bucks a day at the local coffee shop (coffee maker not included). $199. kickstarter.com

Kirin Ichiban Beer Slushie Maker

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There’s nothing like an ice cold beer on a hot summer day. Although you don’t really want it “ice cold” because then your beer would be frozen, until now. Kirin Ichiban’s Beer Slushie Maker is pretty self explanatory; you pour beer in and it comes out like a soft serve, frozen froth. The beer slush keeps your beer at the perfect temperature. We of course have surmised that this product can assist you in discretely drinking in public. As the frozen foam comes out white you can add food coloring or snow cone syrup and no one will be the wiser (except for my boss after he reads this blog post). The device runs on four C batteries, so it’s portable; you just have to buy a lot of C batteries. Not a bad price at $69 dollars, but shipping from Japan will be an additional $47. japantrendshop.com

eCool Earth Cooler

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With energy prices on a constant incline, it’s always good to find ways to cut back on your usage. For instance, that mini fridge in the garage you keep your beer in is just chugging juice. eCool is an electricity free cooler that uses the Earth to keep your beer cold. There is some labor involved as you will have to dig a four foot hole to install the thing, which also means don’t buy this if you live in an apartment. You may not get the Rocky Mountains appearing on your can, but you’d be surprised how cold the Earth can get. Think of a day at the beach and burying your feet in the sand. The deeper you burrow the cooler the sand feels; now imagine how cold it is four feet down. The device is compatible with regular cans and cycles them down and around via hand crank. The walls are insulated to trap the cold, but not let your beer freeze; so no need to move you stash inside for the winter. Plus, with it being good for the environment gives you free rein to condescend your friends for not being as environmentally conscious (after a couple brews of course). $349. ecool.dk

BioLite BaseCamp Stove

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This portable grill would have made it on our Grill Guide, if it were not in the middle of its Kickstarter campaign and unavailable until the end of summer. Surpassing their goal eight times over, with weeks left; BioLite’s wood burning grill was originally conceived as an affordable alternative for cooking over an open fire. In many countries, cooking over an open flame is one’s only option and deaths as a result of cooking related smoke inhalation and burns are greater than that of Aids or Malaria. The highlight feature is BioLite’s thermoelectric generator. The generator uses the fire’s heat to powers a fan that improves combustion, but the generator can also be used to power devices via USB. Fuel is easy enough to get on site as you just need sticks and the BaseCamp Stove is easily transported thanks to its foldable legs and sturdy handle. A gooseneck USB light is also included so you can see how bad you’re burning your steaks, even at night. Pledge $299 at Kickstarter.com

UV Sriracha Vodka

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We weren’t sure what to think when we saw UV’s Sriracha flavored vodka. Sure we’ll put Sriracha on everything to the detriment of our own butt holes and yes that bottle of water on my desk is filled with vodka, but combining the two? Well okay, actually that doesn’t sound half bad, especially considering there may have been an incident once where someone may or may not have drunken straight Sriracha.  So we got the team together to try some of UV’s suggested cocktails which include: the obvious Bloody Mary, Sriracha Chelada (a beer based cocktail), Sriracha Fried Ice-cream, and the chocolate chili martini. We took a lot of notes, but blacked out and lost them; so consider that the Guydster seal of approval. It is a little weak at just 30% alcohol, but we definitely recommend trying a bottle. $12 for a 750ml bottle. Check out UV’s recipes at uvvodka.com

The Insect Cookbook

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We bet you never thought a book would be useful for surviving a zombie apocalypse. It isn’t like the works of Dickens would make great projectiles. Whether it’s a zombie apocalypse or one of those more likely apocalypses; famine will be a serious threat. Knowing how to cook bugs in a way that won’t leave you hurling may be a useful skill in this zombie dog eat dog future. There are no recipes for mock fried chicken made from grasshoppers; in fact a lot of the book covers the history of eating insects, background information and interviews with world figures on the subject. For those too grossed out by the thought of intentionally eating a spider, remember; the FDA allows an “acceptable amount” of insect parts in most canned goods. Might as well embrace it and learn to make a mean cricket kabob. $20 hardcover or $10 for a Kindle copy. amazon.com

Grill Guide: Best Barbecues for Under $1000

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Choosing a grill is a lot like choosing a woman (or man). Are you ready for a big commitment or do you want something cheap that you can ditch when something better comes along? Do you want something that can easily fit on a balcony without being a fire hazard? Are you prepared to piss away money on chunks of carbon to keep the fires burning? Well, Guydster may not be able to help you with women, as proven by these previous analogies; but we can help you sort through your needs to find the right grill. Lets look at the top three gas and charcoal grills and maybe an electric “grill” if there’s time.

Read More…

Palcohol

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Step aside Kool-Aid, there’s a new “add water and stir” crystal in town and it doesn’t change color when you add water. It becomes alcohol. Powdered alcohol, or Palcohol, is exactly what it sounds like. Each pouch contains the equivalent of one mix drink worth of alcohol (10-12% by volume). It was purposefully made large in volume to deter people from snorting it; but if you want to try for yourself, we’d love to hear about it. When Palcohol is released it will be available as rum, vodka, Cosmopolitan, Mojito, Margarita and Lemon Drop. This will undoubtedly make sneaking drinks into movies much easier; just don’t give any to the Kool-Aid man. If you hadn’t already guessed, he is well over the limit. Palcohol is expected to be available this fall. For more info, visit palcohol.com

Grillbot: Automatic Grill Cleaner

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It’s amazing the things we can accomplish and create due to a profound laziness. Grillbot is the Roomba of grills. The robot will automatically clean your grill with three rotating wire brushes. There is a smart CPU controlling the Grillbot allowing it to traverse around and focus on the spots that need the most scrubbing. It won’t be able to traverse vertically to different racks but, with a built-in timer and alarm, you can pretty much just set it and forget about it. The choice between cleaning the grill and having a beer while a robot cleans said grill, is a pretty obvious one. $129.95. grillbots.com

Liftware Stabilizer

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Most of us will hopefully never need to use this item, but for millions dealing with Parkinson’s and other ailments which cause tremors; the Liftware Stabilizer will mean the difference between feeding yourself and the embarrassment of needing to be fed by others. The Stabilizer counters tremors of up to two inches by constantly adjusting the position of the spoon in the opposite direction of your tremor. Two inches may not sound like a lot, but it is. Each kit comes with a charging kit and a spoon attachment, with the promise of more attachments to come soon. The battery takes about three hours to charge and will last for several meals. It may also be useful to those of you suffering from alcohol withdrawals after this long St. Patty’s weekend. $295. liftlabsdesign.com

Wondermade Guinness Marshmallows

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St. Patrick’s Day is just around the corner and what better way to celebrate, aside from getting balls wasted, than with some Guinness flavoured marshmallows from Wondermade. Combining rich creamy Guinness with vanilla extract and rolling it in crushed pretzels tastes as delicious as it sounds, but you’ll likely get diabetes before you get a proper buzz going. Each box contains sixteen marshmallows and it takes two to three days to deliver. Just in time for the festivities. Remember to drink responsibly this Monday and get the thumbs up from the guys before giving anyone your shamrock. $7.95. wondermade.com

Case Cutlery Hobo Knife

case knifeBecause you never know when there might be random free food, we present the Case Hobo Knife. Crafted with the loveable drifter in mind, though not priced as such; the Hobo Knife comes with all the utensils you need if you are camping or riding the rails. Designed with a beautifully jigged amber bone handle, Case’s knife is well crafted and built to last. All three pieces are detachable for easy cleaning or in case you need to use the knife and fork together. Whether that means cutting a tough piece of meat or defending yourself from your fellow hobo while eating a can of ravioli might depend on the day. $70. amazon.com

Wake Up and Smell the Bacon Alarm for iPhone

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Waking up is the worst, especially if you need one of those ear shattering alarms that sound like a rooster or a cat being forced to bathe. Well thanks to Oscar Mayer you can wake up like you did on Saturday mornings as a kid, to the sweet smell of bacon. The device plugs into your iPhone and works in tandem with an alarm app for iOS. The only down side is when you wake up, there won’t actually be any bacon to eat. The device isn’t for sale (yet), but you can enter to win one at wakeupandsmellthebacon.com

Lynx Smart Grill

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Companies throw the word “smart” around a lot when describing their products, but it’s true in the case of Lynx’s concept grill. The Smart Grill uses online databases to automatically set the heat and time to cook whatever you are in the mood for. The user can give the grill verbal commands or through a smart phone app. It will even send you a text when the steak is done. There is also a safety mechanism that automatically turns off the Smart Grill after thirty minutes of disuse. Expect a 2015 release and a high but not unreasonable price point. lynxgrills.com

Barocook Pot and BaroPacks

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Smokey the Bear will thank you for using this fire-less alternative to cooking outdoors. The Barocook line of products allows you to cook through a chemical reaction caused when water comes into contact with their patented Baropacks. The reaction causes the water temperature to rise to 101.5 degrees Celsius while releasing an environmentally and human friendly hydrogen/oxygen steam. You might be waiting a while to fully cook an entire chicken, but the Baropacks will cook most soups, stews and pastas in under an hour. The Baropacks themselves are one per use and the pot requires two packs per use. Packs of ten can be purchased for $13. The Barocook Pot comes with two packs and features pressure release valves. There are a few smaller containers and thermoses starting at $19, but the big pot will come in handy if you need to feed a group on your next adventure. $89. barocook.net

Smart Lid: A Heat Sensitive Coffee Lid

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It all comes down to that first sip. You’ve waited so long already, but you’ve also been burned many times in the past. Wait too long though and your coffee tastes like cold garbage. The Smart Lid turns a bright red while the contents of the cup are at or above 118F (48C). Smart Lids are disposable, but they are fully recyclable. You don’t have to carry your travel mug around with you all day just because you wanted to take your coffee with you as you leave the house in the morning. If you order a pack of forty, two dollars will be donated to the Children’s Burn Foundation. The lids come with 12Oz double wall insulated cups and will be ready to ship in July. For forty packs, pledge $39.

Coravin Wine Access Technology

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Well you can’t exactly call it a bottle opener. The Coravin 1000 features an ultra thin needle that pumps Argon, a harmless gas, into the bottle allowing wine to flow through freely. This gadget preserves the remainder of your high end bottles from oxidization. Once the needle is removed, the cork will reform to its original shape; keeping the bottle sealed for future tastings. You won’t even need to remove the wrapping. Coravin will however, be useless on a plastic cork, twist cap or box of wine. This one may be better suited to the guy with the extensive wine collection or the restaurateur looking to offer higher end bottles by the glass, but I can see it as a worthwhile investment for those who often waste unfinished bottles. The Argon tanks, which contain enough gas to pour fifteen glasses, cost $10.95 a piece and decrease in price the more you get. The Coravin unit itself will run $299. coravin.com

Johnnie Walker Platinum Label

JWPPlatinum Label is the newest edition to the Johnnie Walker family; released recently to great acclaim. This eighteen year old blended scotch is inspired by the special reserves that the blenders at JW would keep for only their most special of guests. It will sit between the black and blue labels on the shelf as one of the highest-end bottles and rightfully so. The blend is comprised of about twenty specially selected casks, all of which came from eighteen year old malts and grains. Platinum Label is rich and aromatic with a fruity flavour and a smoky finish. It’s complex and layered, so no ice cubes or cargo shorts. $149.95. johnniewalker.com

Philips Viva Collection Soup Maker

Philips Viva Collection Soup Maker

 

Every man loves a good homemade soup.  Many of us also enjoy smoothies and compotes.  What we don’t enjoy is preparing them.  This Philips soup maker attempts to eliminate much of the work that goes into making that great homemade soup, smoothie or compote.  Just toss your vegetables or fruits inside it (a recipe book to inspire you is included) and 20 minutes later you’ll be ready to indulge.  Five pre-defined settings, plus a manual mode, offer you choices for smooth soups, chunky soups, compotes and smoothies.  No hand chopping is required!  The 1.2 L stainless steel jar will serve up  4 portions and keep them warm for 40 minutes.  So what’s it gonna be tonight – a mushroom, broccoli or cauliflower soup?  $140.  www.mea.philips.com

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