Did you know we’re only 10 weeks out from the Christmas holidays? How bonkers is that? We’re still reeling from Father’s Day and I haven’t even had the chance to enjoy Halloween yet, so needless to say, we’re freaking out a little bit. The good news is that we’ve already started crossing our Ts and dotting the lowercase Js for this year, and it starts with another supersized Staff Favourites. Get amongst it.
RodgerCleye Edits on TikTok
It’s taken me a lot longer to get aboard the TikTok train than most. I’ve actively boycotted the platform like the non-conformist (former) emo that I am for the better of a year or two, but I finally relented and it’s all because of RodgerCleye. His account single-handedly swayed me and I am never going back. For those who haven’t yet seen Rodger’s musical stylings, I highly recommend you check them out. The man will sing whatever you want and he puts his whole heart, soul and oddly expressive face into each performance – At which point, the entire internet will transform his work into a series of memes that are just delightful. Get amongst it.
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Featured Video from Man of Many
Starward Vitalis & A Podcast
Scott Purcell – Co-Founder
I was lucky enough to attend the launch of Starward Vitalis to celebrate its 15th year, and it was a massive year for them at that. The brand was the Most Awarded Distillery at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition, which is basically the Oscars of the spirits world. So it was only natural for the brand to celebrate its accomplishments with a liquid that represents its journey to date, headlined by a blend of spirits that make up the very essence of what makes Starward great. The distillers hand-picked select barrels and parcels from their Port Melbourne warehouse to choose Tawny, Bourbon, Apera and Rum Barrels. The four combine to form a fruit-forward, dark and rich flavour with toffees, raisins with a long and creamy finish. It also packs a bit of a punch at 52% ABV.
Also, I was also on a podcast recently with Samantha Dybac on her Influence Unlocked Podcast! Was great to chat all things media, startups and side hustles. Give it a listen here if you haven’t already.
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Mate Maker Hard Kombucha
Sam Mangioni – Journalist – Entertainment & Culture
Last summer, hard seltzer was the drink of choice. And while the low-calorie beverage will undoubtedly make its triumphant return as the weather warms up, there’s a new player in town that could provide some healthy (pun intended) competition. Thanks to Grammy-Award-winning trio RÜFÜS DU SOL, the gut-friendly kombucha has finally gone hard. That’s right, the band known for crafting bangers has now crafted some refreshing buch – and it’s actually delicious. We were lucky enough to get our hands on some cans earlier this week and were pleasantly surprised by the novel creation. Their brand goes by the name Mate Maker – an organic, low-sugar alcoholic drink using only real fruit, green tea, botanicals and simple ingredients. Launching in two different flavours, Mango Peach Smash and Citrus Mule, both options are a refreshing alternative to the mass of sugar-heavy products on the market. Perfect for a hot day in the sun, it also pairs nicely with some melodic tunes from the indie dance crew.
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Ring Stick Up Cam
John Guanzon – Head of Social
Ring has made a notable name for itself in recent times thanks to countless viral videos of doorbell camera antics on social media, but it turns out they also have a huge range of other products, including security camera systems. I recently tried out the Ring Stick Up Cam, which is a versatile, wire-free security camera that you can pretty much prop up onto any flat surface or mount to almost anything you can think of.
No need for hardwiring like you do on most of their doorbells in the Ring range, so this little flexible unit is perfect for renters, nosy neighbour-spying-Nancys or anyone who wants that extra added home security. My Ring Stick Up Cam has been propped up in the kitchen and its 1080p two-way talk function allows me to chat to my kids in the morning to help them get ready for school while I’m at work and the wide 150-degree field of view helps me check for any sneaky little hands rummaging through the pantry. It also features high-quality colour night vision, weatherproofing,
Amazon Alexa compatibility and it’ll send you motion-activated notifications through the app. The hardware installation was a complete cinch – pretty much plug and play, and it’s got a removable battery that you just charge via USB. Overall, the Ring Stick Up Cam feels like a high-quality and high-performing product and has definitely been useful in my family household!
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Solid State ‘Supreme’ Solid Cologne
Harry Parsons – Branded Content Manager
It’s no secret that a good whiff of cologne can decide the fate of any first impression (hopefully for the better), this is why I have always stored a bottle of cologne in my bag for meetings or events after work. I recently purchased Solid State’s Supreme wax-based cologne and I must say it is a game changer. With the container being pocket-sized (perfect for that tiny pocket on your jeans, yep the one that never fits anything) I can now easily and subtly reapply it on the go, with a surprisingly long-lasting scent. Inspired by 1 Million Paco Rabanne, the Supreme scent is a cocktail of citrus, spice and woods making for a luxurious, warm, bold and extremely addictive scent. This cologne is now my go-to scent and can honestly say it comes with me everywhere.
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Chandon Garden Spritz
Richie Hall – Video Producer
Chandon Garden Spritz is a ready-to-share blend of Chandon’s renowned sparkling wine and locally crafted orange bitters that is best served over ice with the signature garnish of dried orange and a sprig of rosemary. I tried it for the first time last week and with the warmer months right around the corner I’m expecting this to be very popular over the silly season – and for good reason! It’s fresh, easy to drink and importantly it’s all-natural, with no artificial flavours or colours. Chandon’s high level of craftsmanship, sophistication and balance of flavour is very much on show. Roll on those garden parties!
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Corsair Teams Up with Nanoleaf
Ben McKimm – Journalist – Automotive & Tech
It’s been a long time coming for us RGB nerds, but my favourite peripherals brand Corsair is finally teaming up with my favourite RGB lighting specialist Nanoleaf to combine all the RGB goodness across multiple devices through iCUE. In my gaming room at home, I have a set of Nanoleaf lines while on the desk I have Corsair MM700 RGB Extended Mouse Pad and Corsair K70 Pro Mini Wireless as my everyday keyboard. The ability to now sync the colours displayed across the devices cannot be underestimated and now works on the entire portfolio – including keyboards, gaming mice, and headsets; alongside Nanoleaf’s modular light bars and light panels available in Triangles, Mini Triangles, Hexagons and Squares. You can control and make adjustments to your lighting setup with the Nanoleaf App or CORSAIR iCUE on your desktop for easy and flexible customization.
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Fender Mustang Micro Headphone Amplifier
Rob Edwards – Branded Content Writer
We’ve had a few electric guitars coming through our office lately and I’ve been tasked with trying them out – tough gig, eh? However, while I have a couple of amplifiers at home, I don’t always have time to rent out space at a studio – or the desire to lug my mercilessly heavy gear in and out – in order to let them rip. Enter the Fender Mustang Micro, an absolute godsend for those who want to tear it up on an electric guitar without driving their family, neighbours or (in my case) co-workers nuts.
The Mustang Micro is an incredibly effective substitute for your Fender Super Sonic, Vox AC30, or Marshall stack. Simply plug it into your guitar’s output jack and attach a pair of wired headphones – your old Apple buds should do the trick – and you can scroll through 12 amp models that range from clean to filthy as well as 12 effects combos. It also has adjustable EQ and volume, Bluetooth connectivity, and a rechargeable battery with up to four hours of continuous playing time. If you frequently play electric guitar at home, the Fender Mustang Micro is a must-have tool – your family and neighbours will thank you.
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Clelia Niyikiza – Branded Content Assistant
I had the pleasure of checking out a class at Undercard Boxing this week through work, and although I felt defeated by the workout, I immediately signed myself up to make it a regular weekly commitment. The trainer Andy was very hands-on with improving your technique, and the atmosphere was exactly what you look for in a gym class. The classes are 50 minutes of cardio and boxing, and I promise you’ll break a sweat from the very start. Each week also focuses on different aspects of boxing to help you build on fundamentals as you improve, and if you’re looking to take it to the next level, they also offer a six-week Fight Camp Challenge split up into four components, training, technique, nutrition and recovery. Aside from a regular membership, options to join would be obtaining 5, 10 and 20 class passes or bookings through the ClassPass app for those looking to drop in casually.
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George Dickel Bottled in Bond Fall 2008, Aged 13 Years
Jacob Osborn – Staff Writer
Jack Daniels might get the lion’s share of name recognition, but if you ask me, George Dickel is true Tenessee whiskey done right. The brand’s award-winning bottled-in-bond series continues with this 13-year edition, crafted by Cascade Hollow Distilling Co. General Manager and Distiller Nicole Austin. It kicks things off with a quintessential nose of cola, cherry, oak, and spice. Balanced layers of vanilla, fruit, cola, spice, and creme brulee unravel on the tongue, giving way to a spicy finish of cherry and oak.
Winner of Double Gold at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition, George Dickel Bottled in Bond Fall 2008, Aged 13 Years also earned 95 points at this year’s Ultimate Spirits Challenge. It makes up part of a broader trend of bottled-in-bond releases, which harken all the way back to a government act from 1897. To qualify, the spirit must be aged and bottled in accordance with a very strict set of regulations. This particular expression goes well above the required four-year aging minimum, having spent at least 13 years in the barrel. It’s culled from a mash bill of 84% corn, 8% rye, and 8% malted barley, and bottled at 50% ABV. If you love Tennessee whiskey, you’ll love this!
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