Cooking with alcohol intimidates one in four Americans, according to a new survey by Applebee's Neighborhood Grill & Bar.

In fact, if it came down to it, men would be more comfortable cutting down their own Christmas trees and women would rather risk making a basket-weave pie crust from scratch before adding spirited flair to their at-home creations. It's why Applebee's restaurants are bringing back the popular Spirited Cuisine menu, a collection of dishes infused with the complex flavors of wine, bourbon, beer, and now tequila.

"Cooking with alcohol can be a little intimidating for the average foodie," says Peter Czizek, Applebee's vice president of Culinary and Menu Innovation. "That's why, as the world's largest casual dining restaurant, Applebee's is the perfect place to introduce our Guests to this classic way of cooking uniquely deep and balanced flavors."

Highlighting the menu are two new Spirited options: the Marsala Mushroom Sirloin and Chicken & Shrimp Tequila Tango, along with three other dishes savored by Guests: Double Barrel Whisky Sirloins, Napa Chicken & Portobellos and Brew Pub Pretzels with Beer Cheese Dip. When cooking down the alcohol, all five entrees are left with the sort of cool or savory complex flavors that tantalize taste buds.

The survey found further comedic confusion and hesitation on the part of the public when it comes to cooking with alcohol.

A majority of those surveyed were most scared by a dinner-hosting scenario in which the main dish erupts in flames – almost three times as many as another scenario of serving up a carnivore's feast to a vegetarian guest.

Half of respondents didn't know the correct definition of "deglaze," with 10 percent thinking it meant licking a glazed doughnut's icing clean off.

One in 10 people surveyed thought "flambé" meant either the most flamboyant lamb in a herd or Bambi's French cousin.


Beverage, Casual Dining, Chain Restaurants, Industry News, Applebee's