Celebrating With The Verona Flip

By on January 20, 2015

MyVeronaNJ-Verona-FlipA year of growth deserves a drink and because no one should drink alone, we invite everyone 21 and over to celebrate with us.

It’s been an amazing year at MyVeronaNJ.com so we’re celebrating with a signature cocktail designed just for us by mixologist Wes Kirk at Amanti Vino. But before we get to the festivities, here’s why we’re so excited:

We saw more pageviews in 2014 alone than in our first two years of publishing combined. For you statisticians out there, total pageviews grew 34% and unique visitors grew 41%.

Not only that, but our readership is now majority mobile. Given the amount of time people spend on smartphones or tablets, it’s not surprising. Traffic to MyVeronaNJ.com from desktop computers was 49.36% in 2014, while the rest came from smartphones (36.6%) and tablets (14.03%). Slightly more of our new traffic came from mobile than desktops. On the social side, we saw a 37% jump in Facebook likes and a nearly identical jump on Twitter. We reach more people in Verona, and more people who want to know about Verona, than anybody else.

As a news service to the community, we’re always excited to see the numbers because that’s how we know people are coming to us. The social interaction keeps us up to the minute and very mobile. As we move forward into our next five years, we’ll continue to cover Verona focused news and if there is anything we’re not publishing and you would like to know about it, tell us and we’ll do our best to cover it.

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Now, on to the celebratory cocktail.  On an early winter afternoon a week or so into the holiday craziness, I spent some time at Amanti Vino in Montclair. Wes Kirk, their resident mixologist, shared all kinds of great drink information with me including how to make your own ginger beer. But a big part of our meeting was to discuss winter cocktails and a signature drink for Verona. Considering this week’s cold snap, these may come in handy if you’re stuck inside. First, let’s celebrate with the Verona Flip, which takes its inspiration from a Cognac Flip.

Verona Flip
Ingredients
2 dashes Agnostura bitters
1 whole egg
1/2 ounce cream
3/4 ounce Biscotti liquor
1 1/2 ounces Cognac
Pomegranate seeds

What’s Next
Pour all ingredients into a large shaker. Add ice.
Dry shake – shake with ice – pour into fizz glass and let sit for 2 minutes.
Garnish with grated nutmeg, cinnamon and few pomegranate seeds.

As we head into the peak of winter, here’s a cider recipe that will keep you warm and add a little boost to that container of apple cider that may be hanging out in your refrigerator.

MyVeronaNJ-Amanti-Vino-Hot-Cider
Hot Cider

What’s Next
Place cider, rum, orange, cinnamon stick, and allspice in a small pot and heat on the stove for a few minutes so the flavors can meld. Do Not Boil.

To serve, remove cinnamon stick (optional), add apple slices and garnish with grated nutmeg.

MyVeronaNJ-Amanti-Vino-Ginger-Beer

And if you want to make your own ginger beer, it’s so easy you’ll want to stock up on these ingredients. Take 5 parts of club soda and mix with 1 part ginger beer syrup. Ginger beer syrups vary in spiciness, but this one is the one Wes Kirk used during our cocktail planning session. Add a little splash of flavor and make it your own!

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