Saturday 3 p.m.: The Beer Cellar

Saturday 3 pm: Beer Cellar
Out with the old (CDs) and in with the new. The CDs were just taking up space and the beer was taking up floor space. Personally, I think these attractive bottles are as nice to look at as a row full of lovely book jackets.

The fate of the CDs is undecided. I’ve got the music backed up in multiple places and rarely, if ever, pull a disc out of the library. I’ll either store them or sell them. In the meantime, I’m happy with this tidy arrangement, which has enough room for the beer and preserves a special nook for the snowglobes. (And just for the record, this beer collection is a group effort. I’m just the lucky one who gets to store it.)

Happy New Year!

Tapping the first growler of 2012
Well, hello there stranger! Remember me?

Yeah, long time no post. My new year’s resolution is to update the blog once every two months. (Joke.) Sad to say, that would be an improvement as of late. Can you believe that at one point, not that long ago, I was able to post to this blog ONCE A DAY FOR A YEAR?!

The new year seems as good a time as any to turn the trend and take up the blog again. Lord knows I’ve got a lot of catching up to do; book reviews to post and my photos and travel journal from France for starters.

I was in Kentucky over Christmas (more on that later as well) and stopped at one of my favorite places for beer, The Beer Trappe in Lexington. Resisted the urge to buy one of everything and instead limited myself to a mixed six-pack and a growler of Unibraue Trois Pistoles. We cracked open the growler today in honor of 2012 and I’m enjoying it with friends. It’s a dark, peppery, malty brew and I really like it. I would definitely get it again. There you go, my first recommendation of the new year.

Well, happy new year to all who (used to) regularly visit here. I wish you and yours a happy and healthy year filled with simple pleasures and great adventures.

Cheers!

Saturday in the City

Made the most of a walkabout through the city yesterday, on a warm and sunny Saturday in September. First, I took the Historic Downtown Loop walking tour offered by the Chicago Architecture Foundation. It’s been a few years since I’d taken a CAF tour. It was enjoyable to take this one again and reacquaint myself with some familiar old buildings. If you haven’t taken their downtown walking tours, I highly recommend them as a unique way to gain insight into Chicago’s rich (architectural) history. It’s also a good reminder to always look up and take a moment to walk through the front door to see the wonders inside some of the most unassuming edifices in the loop.

After lunch at my favorite sandwich shop downtown (Cafecito) we stopped in Central camera and then walked over the river to the Poetry Foundation to see their recently opened new building. It’s a unique corner structure, with one side screened by a faux wall. The exterior of the building is a mixture of stone, metal, glass, mirror, and strategically located trees.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t open on a Saturday afternoon (!!) so we had to content ourselves with walking around the outside and peering through the screen and into the window. The entryway looked interestingly laid out, but unfortunately, we couldn’t get in to see it. They have a very unique way of keeping people out, as you can see in the photo above; an entire section of the entry way raises up to act like a barrier.

Bokor Cuvee des Jacobins Rouge

Afterward, we hopped on the el, got off at Argyle and walked over to Hopleaf. The entire summer had gotten away before I’d spent one afternoon sipping beer in their back patio and this seemed the perfect afternoon to set that right.

Life and Limb

Feet First | 350
Tuesday, 23 August

Feet First | 350

As part of our regularly scheduled Tuesday beer night, we tapped the growler of Sierra Nevada Life & Limb (an American Strong Ale, a joint production by SN and Dogfish Head breweries) that we brought back from The Beer Trappe in Lexington. Very, very tasty stuff.

Kentucky Rundown

Went to the Farmers Market in Georgetown.

Farmers Market, Georgetown KY

Toured the Four Roses Bourbon Distillery

Beer Still

and sampled some bourbon.

Sampling Room

Enjoyed some time on the rooftop, taking in the view, the pleasant weather, and the good conversation.

Rooftop View

Got a little reading in

and a little beer drinking with friends.

Beer Trappe

On the Road to Kentucky

Indiana Cornfield #1

A week ago, I took a long weekend out of town and visited a friend who lives in Georgetown, Kentucky. The usual seven hour drive, most of it through the long, flat, boring state of Indiana, took a mind-numbing eleven hours. One particularly terrible accident involving three semi-trucks turned a long section of I-65 into a parking lot.

Indiana Cornfield #3

 

Indiana Cornfield #2

For two solid hours, I stared at the same stretch of cornfield.

Traffic As Far As the Eye Can SeeComing and not going.

But then, we made it to the Kentucky line and the blissfully welcome sight of New Albanian Brewing Company. Suddenly, the drive didn’t seem so terrible.

Sampling for the Growler

We picked up a couple of growlers of beer (the Tafelbier and my favorite, the Community Dark) and headed further south on our last leg of the journey, into Kentucky and the summertime rooftop party that was waiting for us at the end of the road. All worth it.

Three Foodie Feet Fotos

Feet First | 331
Thursday, 4 August

Feet First | 331

Iced tea to get my morning started.

Feet First | 332
Friday, 5 August

Feet First | 332

Every once in a while, I get together with two other cheese-loving friends and we celebrate all things cheese. We had quite the spread and the weather cooperated so we were able to sit outside and feast on cave-aged Gruy√®re, Petit Basque sheep’s milk, Cypress Grove truffle tremor, Sartori Bellavitano black pepper and Chaumes cheese, among others.

Cheestus 2011

Feet First | 333
Saturday, 6 August

Feet First | 333

After Dead Guy, the Juniper Pale Ale is my second favorite Rogue beer. And, it’s a Pale Ale! Surprise, surprise.

Going Going Gone

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Thursday, 21 July

Feet First | 317

I received a six-pack of Full Circle from a neighbor as a thank you and I was reminded how much I enjoy this beer. A good choice for summertime in the backyard. Here I am, conducting an experiment to see which would last longest: the beer, my laptop battery or the light of day.

The battery and the daylight died at about the same time, shortly after I finished the beer–all about 30 minutes after I took this picture.