Tuesday, December 20, 2011


We may not have snow along the coast here in New England, but the holiday season is well underway (with cold weather arriving just in time…cue, “the office is freezing!”). The GAP elves are just returning from a two-day holiday retreat at the beautiful Wentworth by the Sea in Newcastle, NH. Amidst the amazing holiday decor, the team enjoyed spectacular meals, fantastic scenery and, of course, wonderful holiday cocktails. We had an opportunity to reflect on our extraordinary year, present our individual highlights with our clients and our projects. And, we planned for our future.

Reflecting on our last few months of 2011, we discussed the truly unique displays that we designed to capture the holiday spirit (pun intended). Anticipation of cold weather and the powerful Nor’easters we’ve all grown accustomed to had us thinking ‘warm and cozy.’, And, what better way to display a brand than in the glow of a fireplace. A few examples of our festive holiday items are shown below.

Ketel One Fireplace – Wood construction with digital print graphics which can be customized to your channel size. Stocking stuffers not included! 

Leinenkugel Fireplace Screen/Log Carrier – A fireplace needs a screen, and this handcrafted, spot-welded screen is the perfect solution. Couple with a custom log carrier & holder and you have a winning display. Rumor has it, that Santa has one at his place in the North Pole! 

Crown Royal Ornament – When the fire gets too hot make your way to the tree. Our custom ornaments outshine the lights!

And no GAP blog would be complete without a few of our favorite drink recipes to keep you warm during the long, cold New England winter nights! Please celebrate responsibly! Happy Holidays!

Captain Butter Cream

2 - 3 oz Captain Morgan® Original spiced rum

1 oz DeKuyper® Buttershots liqueur

12 oz cream soda

Pour Captain Morgan into a pint glass with ice, and add buttershots. Top off with the cream soda of your choice. Shake, do not stir, and serve.
Buddy Rich 

3/4 oz Stolichnaya® raspberry vodka

3/4 oz Kahlua® coffee liqueur

1/2 oz Chambord® raspberry liqueur

1/4 oz Frangelico® hazelnut liqueur

1/2 oz half-and-half

Build the Stoli raspberry vodka, Kahlua coffee liqueur, Chambord raspberry liqueur and Frangelico hazelnut liqueur into a highball glass filled with ice cubes. Top with half-and-half, and serve.

(Recipes found on drinksmixer.com)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


The GAP team is undeniably passionate about beer. With so many varieties and styles from which to choose, we’ve found that just a little bit of knowledge can help ensure that you select something you will enjoy.

All beer is categorized as either lager or ale.  Within these two categories, there are different varieties of beer with their own characteristic flavors. Lager varieties include pilsner, bock, and Oktoberfest. Examples of ales include pale ale, porter, stout, and wheat beer. The difference between lagers and ales are mainly due to the yeast used, but brewing technique also plays a role. 

Lager is made from malted barley and is produced by yeast fermenting at low temperatures at the bottom of the fermentation tank. It is aged longer than ale (30 days or longer versus less than 3 weeks), which causes the beer to become clearer and cleaner than ale. Lager is almost always served cold and tends to have a more refreshing, lighter flavor than ale.

On the other hand, ales are produced by yeast that ferments at the top of the tank at typically warmer temperatures. The yeast ferments the beer quickly, which allows for a sweeter, more full-bodied and robust flavor as compared to lager. Ales can be served at warmer temperatures.

Here are some characteristics of varieties of ale:

Pale Ale: Usually bronze or amber in color with a balance of hops and malt. Varied hop levels used in the brewing process allow for a wide range of pale ale styles, such as India Pale Ale and Irish Red ale. Examples: New Belgium Fat Tire, Smithwick’s

Porter: Generally hoppy, dry, and dark in color, due to being brewed with dark malts. Many porters are characterized by roasted, chocolate, and creamy flavors. Example: Yuengling Porter

Stout: Slightly stronger than its porter predecessor, while retaining its dark color and big flavor. Made using roasted malt or barley, stouts are often coffee-flavored. Example: Guinness

Wheat Beer: Brewed with a large amount of wheat and subtle hops. There are many variations in flavor and ingredients, which means it varies in appearance, as well, though it is usually cloudy. Examples: Blue Moon Belgian White, Leinenkugel’s Sunset Wheat

Here are some characteristics of varieties of lager:

Pilsner: The most popular and widely available beer style in the world. It is pale and golden in color, and has varying degrees of noble hop bitterness. Examples: Yuengling Lager, Pilsner Urquell

Bock: A strong lager that is rich and malty and typically low in hops. Colors range from light copper to brown. Example: Leinenkugel’s 1888 Bock

Oktoberfest: Lager named after the German festival of the same name. It is also known as Marzen, as it is brewed in March and ferments through the summer. It has a medium to full body and is typically pale yellow to deep amber in color. Example: Leinenkugel’s Oktoberfest

Now that you know a little bit more about beer, get out there with confidence and enjoy responsibly!