The Red Lobster Dew Garita

If you know me, you know that I hate myself and that I kinda wanna die. So when the garbage seafood chain known as Red Lobster announced they were selling something called a Dew Garita, which is a margarita made with Mountain Dew, my first thought was, “Sure, fuck it, why not? I hate being alive anyway.” I already can’t resist booze in its purest form and it’s even harder to resist when it’s something as stupid as this. Plus I’ll do anything for a blog post. Now, I want to make it clear right off the bat that I DO NOT condone going to a Red Lobster establishment. I made a name for myself by supporting small businesses and avoiding chain restaurants and bars as much as possible. Sure, this might make me seem like a hypocrite but I already mentioned how much I hate myself so go ahead and add this onto the long list of reasons why.

I can’t remember the last time I was inside of a Red Lobster. Well, I mean, I vaguely remember drunkenly trying to have sex with a literal red lobster back in college. Also, chill out, animal activists, the thing was already cooked by that point. It didn’t matter how shithouse trashed I was, I wasn’t gonna risk those aggressive ball pinches. But I didn’t remember the last time I was inside one of the restaurants. I realized it was a haven for old-as-shit white people. I was serenaded on all sides by the sounds of cracking knees, racial slurs and those muffled taps from the rubber ends of canes hitting the floor.

I honestly don’t know if I had ever tried Mountain Dew before. I’m assuming I must have because of the many years I spent shoving absolute garbage into my face indiscriminately. I was once leaving a bar and got handed two Four Loko bottles (yeah, glass bottles for some reason) by a strange Mexican I had just met and I drank both of those bitches on my walk home. So I’m exactly the kind of trash person who must have had a Mountain Dew at some point in my life. But even so, I had no memory of it so I asked for a shot of straight Dew on the side so I could try it by itself first. 

In my mind Mountain Dew was always a bright green color. But seeing it up close I discovered it was really a weird mix of green and yellow, which reminded me of the exact color my pee took during that week I was doing an all-veggie smoothie diet to try and flush out the poison from my body. Drinking it was a strange experience. (I’m referring to the Mountain Dew, not my pee.) The soda was kind of tangy with an unnatural metallic flavor at the end. The word “unnatural” is key here because I’ve had plenty of metal objects consensually shoved into my mouth during sex stuff but it wasn’t a similar taste at all. Something like that couldn’t possibly exist in the world. It tasted like the feeling you get when staring into the dead eyes of a porcelain doll you found in the attic.

As a man who grew up in Houston, TX with easy access to amazing Cajun seafood for the entirety of my childhood, the very existence of Red Lobster offends me. It’s like listening to rap music when it’s being done by white people. But since I was already there I decided to order a meal called The Ultimate Feast, which had shrimp scampi, a lobster tail, snow crab legs, and fried shrimp. (1,070 calories? Fuck me.) I think this meal alone made me realize that I don’t need to have butter ever again.

And then came the star of the show. The Motherfucking Dew Garita. It’s supposed to be a super secret recipe but I saw my bartender pour Midori into the shit so, like, that’s basically the secret. She used red sugar on the rim of the glass and the Midori is what really gave it that super green, snot-like, radioactive-y color. Mixing soda and tequila is nothing new for me because I’ve been to movie theaters and have snuck in many of those tiny plastic bottles inside my butthole before I realized that the 16-year old movie theater employee wasn’t getting paid enough to pat me down so I could’ve just carried those things in my pocket if I wanted to spike my drinks while watching The Avengers or whatever.

The first sip of the Dew Garita wasn’t as bad as I expected. I mean, it wasn’t GOOD, but it wasn’t as disgusting as I had prepped for. I got the melon-y flavor of the Midori right up front and the red sugar rim gave it so much extra sweetness, it reminded me that my dad was a diabetic so this is probably the last thing I should be drinking. My dad was also a cocaine addict on top of that, which explains the total lack of self-control I inherited. 

And through those other flavors that strange, metallic taste from the Mountain Dew broke through. It was always lingering in the background like a glitch in The Matrix. Every sip made me feel like this world was not my own. Plus the red and green colors together made the whole thing taste like I was going down on a Roomba on Christmas morning. Everything in my mind and body and liver told me that I was making a mistake by drinking this. And I can’t even say that they were wrong. But hey, no matter what extra crap went into the drink there was still tequila there to make everything feel oddly familiar. So was this stupid Dew Garita worth it?

No, of course not. I’ve mixed tequila into all kinds of dumb stuff while sad drinking alone at home and I can’t think of a legitimate reason why you should go to a fucking Red Lobster restaurant ever. You can buy both Mountain Dew and tequila at a goddamn gas station so if you really want to experience this you can just mix them together and drink them on the couch. So essentially, I drank this Dew Garita so you wouldn’t have to. I rate the entire experience zero stars because an unfortunate side effect is that I’m probably going to live even longer now that I’m avoiding butter forever.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to check my blood sugar because I think I may need to get my fucking foot cut off.


Button Brew House’s 3 Year Anniversary Event

On Saturday, September 19th Button Brew House celebrated their third anniversary by hosting a semi-private event at the brewery. It wasn’t exactly a secret but it definitely wasn’t promoted either. Tickets were only offered and sold to their annual members, close friends of the brewery, and celebrities like me.

I’ve written before about how conflicted I am that things are starting to get back to “normal” during the current Rona pandemic while understanding that small businesses I love are struggling to survive. The bottom line is that I think being out and congregating is still a risk and that significant precautions should be taken. And if you want to argue with me about that then you can take that Facebook comment you’re working on and shove it right up your asshole because I couldn’t possibly care.

So local bars and restaurants are doing their best to continue operating through the new normal with reduced capacities, masks, social distancing, etc. But the Button anniversary celebration wasn’t just a typical day at the taproom. It was a special event with live music and a food truck onsite. And I’m here to tell you that not only was it a lot of fun, it was so meticulously organized that I and the people I spoke to all felt completely safe being there. Part of the reason I wanted to write about this is that it could serve as a blueprint for other breweries wanting to host something similar in the future.

Since public gatherings have been limited to under 50 people by Arizona’s Dept of Health Services, only 48 tickets were made available. A large section of the parking lot was closed off and tables were placed no less than 15 feet apart. No more than 8 people were allowed per table. Guests were asked not to mingle and the only reason they were allowed to go into the taproom was to use the bathroom. Four bartenders on staff became servers for the night and brought beers to the guests’ tables.

If all that sounds like a pain in the ass to put together, I can assure you that you’re correct. A lot of time went into the planning and even more hard work went into serving the guests and making sure they felt comfortable. So was all that effort worth it for a four hour-long event in which people couldn’t even mingle with one another?

It absolutely was. And I’m not the only one who thought this. The feedback from the attendees was universally positive. The event started at 5pm and every single ticket holder was checked in and seated in under hour. The patio was used as a stage for local singer Paul Opocensky who started out the night strong. Of all the white guys with guitars who play at breweries (which are fucking legion), he is definitely the best. Other local musicians Bryan & Koko followed him and Brooke Sample closed out the night.

Paul Opocensky

A lot of the guests said similar things. They talked about how much they missed live music and being out around other people, even if they couldn’t hang out with them. As strict as the guidelines were, this event was still a small taste of normality in the middle of an ocean of shit and people really appreciated it. But the main reason it worked was that everyone followed the rules. That’s gotta be the key for anyone who holds an event like this going forward. And based on how things went on Saturday I would love for other breweries to try something like this. 

A ticket to the event included four beers and a meal from The Blacktop Grill food truck. Plus we all got a BBH mask and a dope “Fuck Covid” shirt that you can buy at the taproom right now. 

As the sun went down, the weather got cooler, and people got a couple of beers in it didn’t even feel much different from the old days. It was an intimate night out with good food, music and drinks…just with a little bit of extra distance between everyone. 

I asked Gabe Ceniceros, owner of the Blacktop food truck and always a man with words of wisdom, what he thought of the event.

“It’s our first time out since March. We’re happy to be out to celebrate another small business that made it through and look back at the warrior status. It puts the badge of honor on people who make it past this.”

Happy 3rd birthday, Button Brew House. I hope to be celebrating many more of these with you in the future.