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10 Strange Uses for Vodka You Didn’t Know About

Vodka, traditionally enjoyed in Eastern Europe, is a distilled spirit made up of mostly water and ethanol. It’s made by distilling fermented substances like grains or potatoes and is used in a variety of popular cocktails such as White Russians, Vodka Martinis and Cosmopolitans…for the ladies. Or for you. Maybe you like Cosmos. I don’t know. But nevertheless, there are tons of vodka-based cocktails enjoyed by many around the world.

Here at of Iron & Oak, we’re not too keen on vodka as we’re bigger whiskey drinkers. I don’t think I’ve personally purchased a bottle of vodka since I was a junior in college, and it wasn’t even for me. These days, I typically only enjoy vodka on Sunday mornings in my Bloody Mary’s. There’s usually a thick slab of bacon, half a bottle of hot sauce and tons of ground pepper mixed in with some tomato juice and Worcestershire sauce. It’s pretty delicious and gets me going in the morning, but other than that, I can’t say vodka is my favorite spirit. You may enjoy the stuff though and, therefore, may be more likely to have it lying around.

For those who are like me and aren’t too big on vodka, or for those who just enjoy strange lists, I came across an article on The Daily Green this morning about vodka and had to repost it for our readers. Apparently, vodka is much more useful than I thought. Here are ten strange uses for vodka you didn’t know about. 

Men Who Carry A Pocket Knife & How They Look Badass

Phone. Wallet. Keys. Pocket knife.

If you’re anything like me, that’s essentially the same routine you go through right before leaving the house each morning. Each of those items – except for maybe the phone, depending on how connected to the outside world you are – is a vital part of your day. Yes. Even the pocket knife.

It may not always come in handy, but it’s one of those things you’re glad you grabbed when you need to whittle an old-fashioned table ornament, make spears to ward off predators or simply open a box with too much packing tape on it.

Actually, if I’m being completely honest, unless you’re working in construction, the armed forces or in the wilderness, today’s typical iPhone wielding, Facebook checking young man doesn’t seem to have much of a need for a pocket knife anymore, which is a shame. An absolute shame. Especially when you consider how necessary they were back in the day.

Hundreds of years ago, General George Washington defeated the British with one swift swipe of his pocket knife. Of course, that’s not exactly how it happened, but, according to The Smoking Jacket, he did carry a pocket knife, a Barlow knife actually. All militia at the time were forced to carry pocket knives as secondary weapons before they were made a part of the American soldier’s uniform during World War II. 

7 Types of Bars and How To Prepare For Them

“I was in a bar the other night, hopping from barstool to barstool, trying to get lucky, but there wasn’t any gum under any of them.” – American comedian, Emo Phillip

Interesting people go to bars. Let me stress that. A lot of interesting people go to bars, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I’d rather strike up a conversation with someone at a bar who’s interesting rather than someone who’s dull.

However, if you’re going to drop however much money on round after round of drinks, it pays to know what you’ll be getting yourself into before leaving the house – that way you’re not paying a ton of money for an experience you’ll hate and you’ll be able to enjoy the atmosphere a bit more.

As we all know, there are a ton of different types of bars out there. A lot of them are pretty self explanatory, but generally speaking, they all have a different aura to them. The walls may be different, the people may be different, and sometimes even the drinks may be completely different. One time, a while back, I paid a $25 cover to get into a nightclub in New York City on a whim, and they didn’t even have my favorite beer. Needless to say, I wasn’t happy. Rookie mistake.

To avoid these types of scenarios, here’s a detailed list of 7 types of bars and how to prepare for them properly, mentally and physically, before leaving the house. Allow yourself to get in the mindset for the evening, that way you’ll be able to have a good time. 

A Manly Man And His Boots: A Chat With HELM Boots

The relationship between a man and his boots should never go overlooked. For starters, a great, durable pair of boots that can withstand the elements can last a man his whole life. Whether building a house, hiking the Appalachian Trail or harvesting hops for a new batch of home brewed craft beer, a manly man and his boots can accomplish a lifetime of tasks together.

A MANLY MAN AND HIS BOOTS: A CHAT WITH HELM BOOTS

Secondly, a man should really pay attention to his boots because women tend to pay attention to those sorts of things. A great pair of boots to go along with a great sense of style and the right attitude can go a long way for an aspiring young gentleman. They can boost confidence, and confidence is key.

That’s why up-and-coming premium boot retailers, HELM Boots have been making fine, quality men’s boots right here in America since 2009. Their ability to somehow blend style, comfort and durability make their boots a worthy footwear option for any man in need of a new boot.

We at of Iron & Oak recently had the opportunity to talk to Ms. Hillary Bilheimer from HELM. She was kind enough to answer our questions and help us get a better understanding of HELM Boots. Read on to learn more about the company, their history and why they should become your new favorite boot brand. 

Shiner International Furniture, Their Rocking Bed & More

In the market for something dark, innovative and badass to cohabitate with your manly living space? We’re inclined to recommend Shiner International Furniture.

Named after the black eye that founder Joe Manus earned when he was 7 years old, Shiner International is an American furnisher based out of Marianna, Florida. Their inventive design tactics combined with their eco-friendly use of raw materials helps them stand out as a dark, sexy furnishing brand perfect for any dark, sexy gentlemen’s living space. 

Every Man Should Know The Art Of Cigar Smoking

Every Man Should Know: The Art of Cigar Smoking

Cigar smoking isn’t for everyone. We know that. But we still think every man should know a bit about the art. There’s a lot of history behind this age-old practice as well as an entire culture to go along with it. Plus, you wouldn’t want to seem foolish when one of your friends eventually has a baby and passes out cigars to all of his friends. Would you?

Here’s our very basic beginner’s guide to smoking cigars along with some history, tips and tricks. It’s always nice to cut the cap off of a nice cigar, pour a glass of whiskey and relax at the end of the day. Give it a try. No pressure.

Behind The Scenes: Happy 100th Anniversary Schott NYC!

Last week, of Iron & Oak journeyed up to Union, N.J. to visit Schott NYC‘s breathtaking factory. We’re huge fans of the 100-year-old company and can’t get enough of their fine leather apparel laced with threads of rich American heritage. It was an honor and a privilege to be surrounded by the noise of the factory, the slew of hard workers and the wealth of history that continues to accompany Schott NYC as they celebrate their 100th anniversary. 

Ridding Your Home of Boring Walls: Below The Boat

We at of Iron & Oak strive to provide you guys, our faithful readers, with a wealth of different information to potentially enhance your overall gentlemanly appearance. One such aspect of this is the general outward impression that the walls in your home give off. Yes. Interior design. You want them to say something about you and your personality without giving off the notion that you’re simply an Xbox obsessed frat boy who drinks cheap beer and may still live with their mom.

That said, your days of simply thumb tacking Star Wars posters to your bedroom walls and calling them art are over. Whereas those movies were surely entertaining, you’re a classy, more sophisticated individual now and the artwork on your walls should reflect that. At the very least, buy a frame, man.

However, while scouring the internet for intriguing artwork for you guys, in an effort to possibly broaden your proverbial horizons, we’ve come across a small company from Bellingham, Washington called Below The Boat. And, because it’s nautical, we’re obsessed.

Every Man Should Know: How To Wear Cologne

Have you ever been enjoying yourself at a gathering or bar when suddenly a fellow male passes by, wafting in a pungent trail of overly musky cologne? It's overkill, and it kills the mood, right? I know many of us have experienced this at one point or another, and if not, then sadly, you may be the culprit at hand. Here's a helpful guide to effectively wearing cologne. Every man should know because, after all, the way you smell is the best way to make great first impressions. HOW MUCH…

My Dad’s Garage: Confederate Motorcycles’ Hellcat X132

The rev of the engine. The wind in your face. The world at your back. You must be riding a Hellcat X132, Confederate Motorcycles‘ ironclad pride and joy — and I wish it were in my garage.

Operating out of Birmingham, Alabama and celebrating twenty-two years of American hand-craftsmanship, Confederate Motorcycles thrives by selling heirloom quality bikes to high profile citizens with the means to own such machinery. One such machine is the Hellcat X132.

Named after the illustrious F6F Hellcat, a fearsome fighter plane dating back to World War II, the Hellcat is the current backbone of Confederate Motorcycles’ line of work. Inspired by the Hellcat X132’s older brothers, the first generation Hellcat and the second generation Hellcat X124, this new addition to the Confederate Motorcycles’ family is sleek, more advanced and beautifully engineered. 

How To Drink Whiskey Proper

Every Man Should Know: The Wonderful World of Whiskey

Mark Twain once said, “too much of anything is bad, but too much good whiskey is barely enough.”

It’s been brought to my attention that a lot of guys out there aren’t aware of what whiskey (or as I like to call it, “writer’s blood”) actually is. This entry will serve to educate those men out there who, for some reason, just can’t put down that warm can of Coors Light. It’s time to man up and class up.

First off, tons of manly men drink whiskey. It’s the drink of choice for famous authors Ernest Hemingway and the aforementioned Mark Twain. Early American actor, Clark Gable, was famously known for his love of whiskey. Upon traveling to Africa, Winston Churchill found the water so unbearable that he improved it by mixing it with whiskey. Hell, Frank and Jesse James — America’s favorite old-timey outlaws — are even related to the Samuels family, the distillers of Maker’s Mark. Frank’s .36 caliber 1851 Navy Colt revolver is on display at their distillery in Loretto, Kentucky. 

The Gentleman’s Guide To The Study

Although I've never heard him say it, I can vividly imagine my grandfather, a gentlemen in the highest esteem, saying to a much younger versions of my father, "If you need me, I'll be in my study." The study was once a place for the gentlemen to retire to. He'd hang his wool coat on the wall and sit down in a deep, worn leather chair. You knocked on the door before you entered your father's study and you definitely didn't open the drawers of the desk in your father's study.…

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