A Bartending Guide for the Rest of Us, Beer Vs. Wine and Hot Stuff for V-Day

• In Vegas Seven’s recent Intriguing People issue, I wrote about former United States Bartenders’ Guild president Livio Lauro, who has spent the past six years developing the USBG Master Accreditation (MA) Program. Lauro advises bartenders wishing to start on the road to their MA to begin with the USBG Study Guide, which comes out February 13 at USBG.org. Also, Lauro’s self-published book 12 to 1,200 Cocktails is due out this spring. Co-written with Southern Wine & Spirits director of mixology, Armando Rosario (one of the three current MA candidates), the book introduces the craft of bartending and offers a better way of learning cocktail recipes by understanding 12 basic categories and techniques. BarAnywhere.com.

Wine and Canvas will celebrate its one-year anniversary with a celebration at Kahunaville in TI, 5:30-9 p.m. February 13. If you caught my dispatch from the class I attended (“Pinot While You Paint?” Nov. 1, 2012) then you already know that this is an art class unlike those you recall from grade school. Enjoy cocktails, cupcakes and raffles while you learn to paint a masterpiece you can keep, give away or hide for all eternity. $35 (does not include food or beverages), RSVP for a spot at Facebook.com/WineAndCanvas.

• I recently found myself in a fermentation quandary when I attended a pairing dinner at Aureole that pitted wine against beer. Mandalay Bay wine director Christophe Tassan did the honors with the wine, while Nevada’s only female certified cicerone Sarah Johnson held it down for the beer crowd. Course by course, each selected a beverage to pair with executive chef Vincent Pouessel’s five-course menu: Charlie’s onion soup, green salad with roasted quince, roasted monkfish tail, blue cheese and poached-pear tart with creamy fromage blanc and an all-American dessert sampler. Liquid highlights included the Lindemans Gueuze Cuvée René, Goose Island Brewing Co.’s Matilda, a 2007 Côtes du Rhône grenache from Château de Fonsalette and the Old Rasputin XV Anniversary Barrel-Aged Stout. The results? Beer 3, Wine 2. So, can we do this again?

• I cannot personally attest to the purported aphrodisiac qualities of Angels Aphroenergy drink (and probably wouldn’t cop to it even if I could), but I can say with certainty that I dig the gentle energy boost (as opposed to a jittery jolt) and the tangy strawberry flavor. One can of Las Vegas-based Angels delivers a proprietary blend of horny goat weed, damiana, ginseng, yohimbe, guarana, ginko biloba, taurine and caffeine among other things to, you know, get your wings up. $4 per can at Liquor Library in McCarran International Airport, DrinkAngels.com.

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Vegas Uncork'd: A Mouthwatering Preview

Vegas Uncork'd: A Mouthwatering Preview

By Melinda Sheckells

At 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, 150 VIP guests will gather at Hakkasan San Francisco to sample the programming that will be offered at Vegas Uncork’d by Bon Appetit May 9-12. Billed as an "Around the World on One Strip" food extravaganza, the event features chefs and sommeliers from Bellagio, Caesars Palace, Mandalay Bay and MGM Grand presenting bites from England, Spain, Italy, Japan, Mexico and China.