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Know your Drink – Single Malt, Blended Whisky, Cognac

What is Blended Whisky?

Blended whisky is a mixture of single malt whiskys and ethanol derived from grains. Developed for those who could not stommach the strong taste of whisky, it is a combination of malt and grain whiskys. First distilled and bottled by Andrew Usher in Edinburgh in the early 1860s, it turned out to be softer, lighter and more palatable.

The character of the whisky is determined not only by the proportions of malt and grain whisky, but also by the ages of the individual whiskies and the manner in which they are combined to bring out the finest qualities in each other. Most whisky drunk across the world is blended whisky. Famous Grouse, Bells, Teacher’s, Whyte & Mackay and Johnnie
Walker are a few that are well-known.

Blended Whisky

What goes better with Whisky – Water or Soda?

Whisky is preferred with water more than soda as soda is carbonated water andit kills the taste of whisky. But real connnoisseurs of whisky like to have it neat or with water on side or with two cubes of ice.

What is Cognac?

The wines of Poitou, La Rochelle and Angoumois, produced from high qualityvineyards, were shipped to Northern Europe where they were enjoyed bythe English, Dutch and Scandinavians as early as the 13th century. Inthe 16th century, they were transformed into eau-de-vie, then matured in oak casks to become Cognac.. That was the start of the
adventure for a town, which was to become the capital of a world famous trade. Cognac is a living thing. During its time in the oak casks it is in permanent contact with the air. This allows it to extract the substances from thewood that give both its colour and its final bouquet.

Ageing is indispensable if an eau-de-vie is to become Cognac. It takes placein casks or barrels that hold between 270 and 450 litres. The natural humidity of the cellars, in which the casks are stored, with its influence on evaporation, is one of the determining factors in the maturing process. With the balance between humidity and dryness, the spirit becomes mellow and ages harmoniously.

Making Cognac is the work of the Master Blender. Applying strict control, experience and intuition, he subtly blends eaux-de-vie of different ages and crus, producing a Cognac that through the years will not only retain its own personality, but will also keep a place in the heart of the consumer.

Hefe-Weizen – a wheat beer, lighter in body, flavour and alcohol strength.

Ice Beer – a high-alcohol beer made by cooling the beer during the process to below the freezing point of water (32 degrees Fahrenheit) but above that of alcohol (-173 degrees Fahrenheit). . When the formed ice is removed and discarded, the beer ends up with a higher alcohol-to-water ratio.

India Pale Ale (IPA) – a generously hopped pale ale.

Kolsch – West German ale, very pale (brassy gold) in hue, with a mild malt flavour and some lactic tartness.

Malt Liquor – Most malt liquors are lagers that are too alcoholic to be labelled lagers or beers.

Ale – Made of the highest quality malts, the driest and most highly hopped beer. Sold as light ale or pale ale in bottle or on draft as bitter.

Pilsner – Delicately dry and aromatic beers.

Porter – A darker (medium to dark reddish brown) ale style beer, full-bodied, a bit on the bitter side. The barley

(or barley-malt) is well roasted, giving the brew a characteristic chocolaty, bittersweet flavour.

Stout beer – Brewed from roasted, full-flavored malts, often with an addition of caramel sugar and a slightly higher proportion of hops. Stouts have a richer, slightly burnt flavour and are dark in colour.

Wheat Beer – A beer in which wheat malt is substituted for barley malt. Usually medium-bodied, with a bit of tartness on the palate


Enjoy.. now you know what you are drinking…


Male-Female Brain Differences

Male-Female Brain Differences
Male-Female Brain Differences

What kind of brain do you have? There really are big differences between the male and female brain, says Simon Baron-Cohen, director of the Autism Research Center, Cambridge University. In his new book, the Essential Difference: Men, Women and the Extreme Male Brain (published by Penguin) Baron-Cohen shows that, indisputably, on average male and female minds are of a slightly different character. Men tend to be better at analyzing systems (better systemisers), while women tend to be better at reading the emotions of other people (better empathisers). Baron-Cohen shows that this distinction arises from biology, not culture.

Cell numbers: men have 4% more brain cells than women, and about 100 grams more of brain tissue. Many women have asked me why men need more brain tissue in order to get the same things done.

Cellular connections: even though a man seems to have more brain cells, it is reported that women have more dendritic connections between brain cells.

Corpus collosum size: it is reported that a woman’s brain has a larger corpus collusum, which means women can transfer data between the right and left hemisphere faster than men. Men tend to be more left brained, while women have greater access to both sides.

Language: for men, language is most often just in the dominant hemisphere (usually the left side), but a larger number of women seem to be able to use both sides for language. This gives them a distinct advantage. If a woman has a stroke in the left front side of the brain, she may still retain some language from the right front side. Men who have the same left sided damage are less likely to recover as fully.

Limbic size: bonding/nesting instincts – current research has demonstrated that females, on average, have a larger deep limbic system than males. This gives females several advantages and disadvantages. Due to the larger deep limbic brain women are more in touch with their feelings, they are generally better able to express their feelings than men. They have an increased ability to bond and be connected to others (which is why women are the primary caretakers for children – there is no society on earth where men are primary caretakers for children). Females have a more acute sense of smell, which is likely to have developed from an evolutionary need for the mother to recognize her young. Having a larger deep limbic system leaves a female somewhat more susceptible to depression, especially at times of significant hormonal changes such as the onset of puberty, before menses, after the birth of a child and at menopause. Women attempt suicide three times more than men. Yet, men kill themselves three times more than women, in part, because they use more violent means of killing themselves (women tend to use overdoses with pills while men tend to either shoot or hang themselves) and men are generally less connected to others than are women. Disconnection from others increases the risk of completed suicides.

Why Does My Body Do That?

Learn the common causes behind your body’s little quirks

Whether uncomfortable, embarrassing or just plain weird, there are some pretty funky things that our bodies do. Curious about the causes of such reactions as hiccups, goose bumps and eye twitches….

Read on to discover the common reasons for peculiar bodily functions.

Yawns

Yawns
Yawns

If your body is low on oxygen, your mouth opens wide and tries to suck more in. Yawning is a way to regulate the amount of carbon dioxide and oxygen in your blood. Unfortunately, yawns are nearly impossible to stifle.


Eye Twitches

Eye Twitches
Eye Twitches

Serious eye twitches can be a symptom of neurological disorders, but often there is a more mundane explanation. Common causes for eye twitches include stress, lack of sleep, extended staring or eye strain. Before you get frantic, try reducing your stress level, cutting back on caffeine and catching up on sleep.


Itches

Itches
Itches

According to Dr. Plasker, our skin most often gets itchy because of dryness associated with the environment or over-washing—water and soap can strip skin of its natural oils, thus sapping moisture. Face or body lotion should be able to keep these types of itches under control; also look for body washes and soaps labeled “moisturizing.” If you still have itchy patches, you may be experiencing an allergic reaction to a chemical, plant, food, animal or drug. See an allergist if the itching is persistent.


Hiccups

Hiccups
Hiccups

If you’ve frequently got a case of the hiccups, try slowing down when you eat and drink, suggests Dr. Plasker. Doing either too quickly causes your stomach to swell; this irritates your diaphragm, which contracts and causes hiccups. You may also get hiccups in emotional situations or if your body experiences a sudden temperature change. In both of these cases, the hiccups are a result of a glitch in your nerve pathways, which is why a sudden scare—which might shake up and reset your nerves—can sometimes end an episode.


Goose Bumps

Goose Bumps
Goose Bumps

Those tiny bumps that cover your skin when you’re cold or scared are actually a defense mechanism. Goose bumps occur when the arrector pili, a tiny muscle that connects the hair follicle with skin, contracts and makes the hair stand on end. If you had more hair—like cavemen did—the upright hair would trap air to keep you warm or make you look bushier and therefore more threatening to predators.


Sneezes

Sneezes
Sneezes

Sneezes happen when your body is trying to expel an irritant from the nasal cavity. If you have allergies, pollen or pet dander is usually to blame. If you have a cold, your body makes mucus to trap the virus, and sneezing helps force it (and the sickness) out of your body. An over-the-counter allergy or cold medicine helps suppress your reaction to allergens or reduce mucus production, which should prevent sneezing fits.


Coughs

Coughs
Coughs

A cough is another mechanism your body uses to get rid of irritants. There are special cells along your air passage, says Dr. Plasker, that recognize irritants and force them out. Common colds, sinus infections and pneumonia all increase your body’s mucus production, which triggers coughing. Smoking and asthma also tend to irritate the cells. To help cut down on chronic coughing, exercise regularly and practice good posture to keep your air passage open.


Charley Horses

Charley-Horses
Charley-Horses

These sudden, super-painful muscle spasms can be blamed on several things, including dehydration or electrolyte imbalances—often from strenuous exercise. After a demanding workout or an extra-long run, sip a sports drink to keep your system running smoothly. If you experience this type of cramping, walk around to help relieve the pain.


Shivers

Shivers
Shivers

Shivering, says Dr. Plasker, is full-body muscle twitching. When your temperature drops too low, your body shakes all over in an attempt to generate heat. The only way to cure these kind of shivers is to get your temperature back to 98.6°F.


Ear Ringing

Ears Ringing
Ears Ringing

Ear ringing, or tinnitus, can happen for two reasons. If you have fluid or an infection in your middle ear, you may hear a constant buzz. However, the more common cause is damage to the microscopic ends of your hearing nerves, which often happens when you’re exposed to loud noises. To prevent permanent damage (and preserve your hearing), wear earplugs at concerts and sporting events—or even when you mow the lawn.


Stomach Rumbles

Stomach Rumbles
Stomach Rumbles

As food, liquid and gas move through your digestive tract, your stomach muscles and intestines contract and cause rumbling noises—borborygmi is the scientific name. Everyone’s stomach makes noise during digestion, but if you have extra-loud rumbles, a teaspoon of olive oil or a cup of herbal tea with lemon may help ease them, says Dr. Plasker.


Limbs Falling Asleep

Limbs Falling Asleep
Limbs Falling Asleep

When there’s consistent pressure on part of a limb—like when you sit on your feet or rest your head on an arm—the pressure squeezes your nerve pathways and scrambles messages sent to your brain. The mixed messages make you lose feeling in the squished body part because your brain has trouble telling it what to do. To prevent a case of pins and needles, avoid sitting or lying in positions that compress your nerves.


Seeing Stars

Seeing Stars
Seeing Stars

If you stand too quickly, suffer a blow to the head or are stricken by a migraine, there’s a good chance you’ll see stars as blood surges to different parts of your body. Generally these tiny flashes of light will fade in a few seconds. If you see stars for more than a few moments, you could have a tear or tiny clot in your retina, and you should consult a physician immediately.


Ear Popping

Ear Popping
Ear Popping

The Eustachian tube in your inner ear is responsible for maintaining equal pressure on both sides of your eardrum. When you experience a rapid change in altitude—during takeoff in an airplane or when riding an elevator in an extra-tall building—the Eustachian tube opens to release pressure, and you hear a pop. To force the tube open (and “pop” your ears),  Squeeze your nostrils closed while exhaling forcefully through your nose.

Certain aromas can help lift your mood and energise you

Certain aromas can help lift your mood and energize you.

Aroma can change mood.
Certain aromas can help lift your mood and energize you.

Studies suggest that our sense of smell is 10,000 times more precise than our sense of taste. In fact when a scent is detected, it sends a signal to a part of the brain that controls memories and emotions. This is why the smell of popcorn reminds you of the movies or a whiff of coffee brings memories of early mornings. A scent can also help lower stress levels, improve mental and physical health, ease pain and curb insomnia.

Increase your sex drive : It may sound bizarre but studies suggest that baby powder, cucumber and even licorice, can turn women on. Pink grapefruit, oranges, etc, can help. Fresh citrus fragrances remind you of spring and summer and help you be perceived as younger and more energetic.

Control cravings: If you are one of those who suffer from major snack binges, then you should be sniffing green apple, banana or your favourite scent. Studies suggest that this will help you give up your cravings and lose weight in the long run. The brain is fooled into believing that you have already eaten the foods and will make you feel full longer. You can also try using cinnamon and vanilla scents.

Calm yourself : Lavender oil has been used since years to relax and calm the mind. Try adding a few drops of orange or lavender to a diffuser and use in your office or home on very stressful days. Bathing with a lavender-scented wash is another great way to unwind after a long day at work. Historically, it is considered calming, cooling, immune-enhancing and hormone-balancing. Lavender oil can also be used to calm emotions like fear, doubt and worry, as well as feelings of anger and irritability.

Learn something new : If you have been working really hard on a big presentation or staying up all night studying for your exams, try using rosemary oil. It is said to have properties that will help make you more alert and attentive. Rosemary essential oil is known to be a good brain and nerve tonic. It improves mental activity and is a solution for depression, mental fatigue and forgetfulness. Inhaling some rosemary oil will improve your spirit immediately and eliminate boredom.

Reduce pain: Put aside all those pills and go for something natural. Lavender or peppermint oil can ease headaches and other pains. It is said that the presence of calcium antagonism in peppermint oil aids in removing pain. It is also cooling in nature and helps ease fever. Put a few drops on a handkerchief and inhale the aroma.

Courtesy http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/5527429.cms?prtpage=1

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