Monday, September 12, 2011

Bags and Bottles.

Every sinner on a bike knows how many beers their bag can hold. Shit, she can probably tell you the difference in capacity between bottles, cans and 40s. If she's a smart sinner, she'll wait until 8:58 to buy beer in the city limits. Dash into the grocery store, flurry exchange of currency and then rip into that treated cardboard like a zombie into a brain. Fill your bag and then fill your belly.

There's nothing we like better than a ride with a few good friends in your bag, and the enablers at Timbuk2 have made debauchery on a bike even easier. Their Hemlock Backpack is a latchkey for having a Dionysian night. With capacity for a case of cans or 18 bottles, this bag is also outfitted with a bottle opener on the left shoulder strap. Let the iniquity begin.

And we, your bold, beautiful and boozed-up buds busted this bag out of William's collection of many in order to test its mettle against our eternally wet appetites.

What happened in the kitchen that night can only be described as a small miracle: burritos, holding the same cryptid mischievousness of the Chupacabra; descended from on high, laden with starch, spinach and sass, landing on our plates and loading our mouths with the savory tones of summer bounty. Science has yet to prove how tasty a treat we actually crafted that night.

We don't believe in gods - in burritos, we trust.

Test beverage for the evening was Mudpuppy Porter from Sand Creek Brewing Company, and musical accompaniment for the evening was from Kanye West & Jay-Z, both of which could merit their own review - but that's not our modus operandi here tonight.

The Hemlock won over our hearts and our stomaches in short order.  This one's got it all - form, function, flippancy. What more could you ask from your opener than to carry your beer as well? How about the ability to flawlessly remove a cap? Done deal. Throw in good looks, solid construction and the ability to haul your laptop as well (not to mention a hidden stash pocket for cash, credit cards, whatnot) and you've got a winning package.

Due to the verve and attitude displayed by this particular opener, we couldn't help but give it a resounding 5 out of 6 bottles.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Opening Review

At the end of the keychain, bottom of the drawer, or side of the fridge lives a special someone. So special, that you'll never leave home without one and never be caught without one at home. At a hootenanny, watch an entire group of Carpathians fumble through their pockets as they protest in amazement that there is not one to be got.

Clever, creative or curious design can turn an ordinary opener into a drinking totem. Lassoo a brew or two and bring your appetite as well. Welcome to the Bottle Opener Review - a blog dedicated to the search for quality bottle openers, and their appreciation.

The premier review will be of one of the most widespread and commonly available keychain bottle openers, the extruded aluminum promotional keychain opener.

The meal prepared with the review was mock-duck thai red curry, with short-grain brown rice.

With mother nature telling Trevor to "lose those sleeves" and father time telling Will he had lost enough blood to "reenact the passover", the heat in the kitchen took a toll on our chefs and faithfully handsome authors.

The opener in question is, as previously mentioned, one of the more pervasive and cheaply available extruded aluminum, made in China, openers. The specific item used was a promotional keychain for QBP's FrostBike open-house (2007). The test-beers were Tyranena Brewing Company's Bitter Woman IPA. (Caveat; the beer in question is actually a twist-off cap, which hopefully did not skew results)

First impressions were that the opener was "dinky at best", unimpressive, but pleasantly simple. Also noted were that it was discrete, incredibly average, uninspired, and (for better or worse) non-lethal {footnote 1}.

The FrostBike opener uses a traditional "pull-up" style, but has a fairly small amount of leverage. As far as opening abilities, this opener does about as well as you'd expect from looking at it. Out of six beers opened, only one was able to be opened in one pull - the rest required a secondary pull to finish them off.

Overall, we would recommend this opener for fidgeters, avid bowlers or Bananarama fans.

Final verdict? We give it two bottles out of six - for ability to remove a cap, but without class or style.

{Footnote 1} How do you tell if a bottle opener is non-lethal? Simple. Get three beers and two friends together in an empty room, lock the door, place the beers and opener in betwixt the once friends and let St. Peter do the math. For those of you who liked the review, you're lucky this opener was non-lethal. For those of you who hated this review, why are you still reading?