What do you get when you take two gorgeous, talented, funny, free spirited and stylish gals and add in a few cocktails? OK…get your minds out the gutter people. The right answer (of course) is that you get Tripping Out with Alie & Georgia where two besties (Alie Ward and Georgia Hardstark) go on spectacular adventures and kick up booze filled beverages in ways that you could never imagine!
Premiering on the Cooking Channel Friday June 21st at 7:30pm (PST), Alie and Georgia travel to destinations like Las Vegas, Miami, and San Francisco to take in local libations and activities and then, come back to good ol' Los Angeles to show why they are the hostesses with the mostest by planning fantastic parties for their friends based off of their travels. We know, it sounds like a real “can't miss” so the real question is…why would you want to?
OC Weekly (Ali Lerman): Being that you're both writers, I can totally relate that you got into creating cocktails because deadlines and drinking kind of go hand in hand. How you'd end up getting on Cooking Channel because of it though?
Alie Ward: I was a journalist at LA Weekly and the LA Times and was covering cocktails, events, and nightlife. I was reading and experiencing the craft cocktail scene a lot and at that point, it was just starting to get a little bit out of control. Georgia and I had this fictitious drink that we would joke about that didn't exist called, “The McNuggetini.” We'd want to have it after work because our hours were so late and we would want a dinner and drink all in one.
Georgia Hardstark: Yeah so, we made up this McNuggetini and it was totally an inside joke between us that we thought was so funny. We had a friend who made videos for Funny Or Die and he agreed to make a “how to” video for us. So we filmed it in my grandma's kitchen in Los Angeles and the video totally went viral. We didn't expect it at all. After we made a couple of videos, Cooking Channel contacted us and were like, “Can you guys do this for real and not as a joke?” We were like, yes we can! So from there, we just started making videos and cocktails for them!
That is incredible! Now do people always hit you up to try out their cocktail inventions?
Georgia: We actually get sent a lot of booze, which is the most awesome perk of the job. We get to try a lot of weird liqueurs, really awesome homemade bitters and that sort of thing. When we go to bars, we always like to try the weirdest thing on the menu and the most normal thing on the menu to see how that specific bartender plays with weird things and classic cocktails.
Alie: Sometimes when we do go to tastings, restaurants, or new bars we'll get sent a lot of drinks to try. I think people forget that we are two not large women. [Laughs.] It's nice to have a partner to be testing things with you because you can try three drinks while only really consuming one and a half. We really have to put the brakes on some testing but, we do get the opportunity to try a lot of great drinks.
What's the biggest drink failure you've ever created that you literally spit out the second it hit your lips? It has to be the “Ham Daiquiri” because ummm…yuck.
Georgia: [Laughs.] Yeah that is probably the worst cocktail that we've done that has made it to a video, and that was before we started making them for Cooking Channel. Once we started making them for Cooking Channel, we wanted to make them better. We do the testing process before we come to the final cocktail and depending on what cocktail you're making, a lot of them are initial failures.
Alie: I think that some of our early drinks were kind of stunt cocktails. But when it comes to our new show and the recipes that we'll be putting up for Cooking Channel, those are legit good drinks that we do test and take pride in. But we definitely caught people's attention initially by making ridiculous drinks that were sort of absurdly irreverent. Like yeah, blend ham in a daiquiri! It makes absolutely no sense but I think it sort of got people to notice that we are fearless.
It almost made sense because of the honey glazed ham aspect but as soon as you guys sucked it through the straw, I was ready to yack.
Alie: Now if we were going to make that drink again, we could probably make it good. Like if we did something with a ham infusion or a liquid smoke plus some pineapple rum, I think we could actually retool it and make the flavors present. But the texture of that one? [Laughs.]
Georgia: Yeah, I think we need to do a Ham Daiquiri redemption. With all of our cocktails what we try to do is challenge flavors. The ones that make it on the show are interesting but they are a little more balanced than that one! And they are much less chewy than the Ham Daiquiri. [Laughs.]
Ughh chewy. Haha, barfing. You're also both very stylish. Have you thought of maybe branching off into a clothing line?
Alie: Yes! We would love that! Vintage inspired clothing is way more flattering because it is tight on the waist and roomy in the ass area. My dream also is to have an Alie and Georgia vintage inspired cocktail set line, so we're claiming dibs on that!
Georgia: We're both really into the vintage clothing because it's so flattering and timeless. I actually started my vintage clothing shopping when I was living in Orange County and when we were both in high school, we started dressing in vintage. It's such a great style and I think a lot of people are afraid to go there but, I think it'd be really fun to have a vintage clothing line and jewelry…and purses!
Off the subject, your "Slumber Party” podcast is seriously hysterical. Do you find doing it sort of therapeutic and do you have cocktails before the show?
Georgia: [Laughs.] It's absolutely therapeutic and I think one of the big parts of Alie and my relationship is that we can talk about any weird thing at any moment and completely relate on it. It's really fun to do that on the podcast and have a good response to it so it's not just us sitting in a car thinking or saying something really deep and funny. People are actually responding and saying, “Oh yeah I think that too!” When we're on camera we get bleeped out a lot but when we're on the podcast, we are definitely a little more vulgar and we talk about what we want.
Alie: Yeah, the podcast is a little bit more unfiltered but it's funny because the podcast runs about the same amount of time as a therapy session. It is definitely more cathartic and every time we have a guest on, we always learn something from them. We used to make a cocktail before every episode and talk about it, especially when it was just us although, we find we are a little more coherent when we don't. But, we are the ultimate hostesses so if we have guests in the pillow fort for the Slumber Party podcast, we will offer them perhaps a wine spritzer. Just to cool down you know?
It's like a whole other side of you two and it's seriously great. OK, back on topic. What do you ladies have in store for the viewer's on Tripping Out with Alie & Georgia?
Georgia: The show is a totally new format for us because it's based on “Classy Ladies,” which we did two seasons of for Cooking Channel. In this one we just kind of go out into the world and have adventures, eat, drink, and do crazy little adventurous things. Then we come back to L.A. and throw a party for our friends based on our adventures. We're crazy excited that this is happening to us so everywhere we go, you can kind of feel that excitement. We're not these old crotchety men not enjoying our experiences anymore and I think our connection as best friends will be a really fun thing for the viewers, both men and women.
Alie: So instead of bringing home a crappy souvenir for your friends, you are bringing home drinks inspired by maybe something you ate on your trip. It's been great, we did six different episodes and had something that we wanted to see in each city and we experienced it together. It's kind of like a best friends travel show with a food and drink element. We play off each other well and it's a dream come true to be able to go on a trip with your best friend as a job. We kind of conned the world into letting us do this. [L[Laughs.]p>
Follow Alie and Georgia on Twitter @AlieandGeorgia, listen to their Slumber Party podcast on iTunes, and check some stellar videos on their website www.AlieandGeorgia.com. Make sure you tune in to catch the premiere of Tripping Out with Alie & Georgia on Cooking Channel this Friday June 21st at 7:30pm (PST). For more info on the show, go to www.CookingChannel.com.