Summertime. Hot days, no more school, and yes, our fourth round of the beer exchange. This was one of my favorites—IPAs. I’m trying to savor these…but at the same time, you can’t let them sit too long, or they’ll go bad! While reviewing the exchange beers, and thinking about my favorite IPAs, I’ve done you the great pleasure of creating our “top ten IPAs” list. Here they are in no particualar order. You’re welcome.
10. Founder’s All Day IPA (ABV 4.7%)
IPAs don’t have to be high in alcohol content. Enjoy this bitter delight ALL Day…and more than once. Packs a punch of hops and malts without the dangers of having three on a hot day and feeling groggy for the rest of the day.
9. Weyerbacher Double Simcoe IPA (9%)
Hop. Garden. There really isn’t much more to say here. If you like the aroma and flavor of hops…this is the one for you.
8. Sierra Nevada Snow Wit White IPA (ABV 5.7%)
For those drinkers who are looking for something light and sweet…but still packing a hop-forward punch. The Snow Wit is surprisingly tasty with a refreshing sweet taste of summer.
PHOTO: Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
If you haven’t heard of Marfa, Texas, I can’t blame you. I didn’t know much about it until I moved to Austin a couple years back, but then I learned quickly enough: Marfa is a little town in the West Texas desert which has turned into an art enclave in the past few decades. It has some glimmers of weirdness because it was the setting of an old James Dean movie way back in the day, and it’s also home to the Marfa Lights, a mysterious phenomenon in the sky… basically, if you are looking for a scenic, artsy, and perhaps slightly creepy wild west desert roadtrip, West Texas (and specifically Marfa) is the place for YOU!
And the place for ME. I loved our trip so much. It’s funny because Marfa really is a teensy town, but I felt like there was way too much to do in the short amount of time we spent in the town (2 days out of the 4 we were in West TX). And by “do” I mean “eat” obviously, because Marfa actually has a great (albeit small, I mean come on, it’s like a 4-street town) food scene! So many cute food trucks and hole-in-the-wall spots only open for breakfast or lunch. There are like three “fancy”-ish restaurants and three bars as well. At least five days’ worth of solid eating and drinking, is what I’m saying.
With 4th of July just days away, it’s time to start seriously thinking about how we’re going to eat and drink our patriotic fervor this year.
Fortunately, you can do both in one with Endless Simmer’s 4th of July cocktail cooler popsicles. Enjoy.
Hey guys. Have I mentioned before that I like bacon?
No? I feel like I might have brought that up once or twice or 100 times in the past.
Well you won’t be surprised to learn that I was pretty excited to discover the new website Farmland Bacon Club. There are a lot of websites out there, but IMHO too many of them don’t focus exclusively on bacon. Farmland Bacon Club is 100% dedicated to celebrating all things smoked pig. It’s described as “a place where bacon lovers can connect, talk, taste, write, post, inspire, design, win, view, vote, like, upload, download, create, in?uence, and share their passion.” Sounds like a good place to me!
From bacon and egg stuffed biscuits to bacon and beer pairings (YES!) to videos on how to make the infamous bacon weave taco, they have it all covered. There’s even a 2014 calendar listing exclusively bacon-centric events. Now you can stop going to all those boring non-bacon-centric summer parties!
Yes, there are offline benefits to being in the Bacon Club as well — you can sign up to purchase Farmland’s Bacon of the Month, which delivers a new bacon to your doorstep once every month.
Follow @FarmlandFoods on Twitter for more up-to-the-minute bacon fun or go straight to the Farmland Bacon Club here.
God I love it when food drools right back at you.
Recipe: Rolo cheesecake bars by Hugs and Cookies XOXO
Every once in a while, the fiance’s schedule and my schedule line up so that we can have dinner together. Sometimes I make dinner (salads, stir fry, and fried rice), and most of the time she makes dinner. Last night, she made dinner — pulled pork. Thanks to my trusty beer exchange, there are a few unique beers I will hide away to have with a particular meal, or IN a particular meal. She asked me the night before to suggest a beer to cook our BBQ pulled pork in. In digging through my arsenal of craft beers, I came upon the Lagunitas Brown Shugga’ Sweet Release. BINGO – what else could complement a sweet BBQ pulled pork like a beer with a tasting profile including brown sugar, sweet fruits, and a warming boozy taste to pair with the tang of BBQ sauce. A match made in pork and beer heaven.
At this point I feel like I’m getting a reputation among my friends… a reputation for being the person who always brings the salad to the dinner party or cookout. Here’s the thing, though: salads are not boring if you do ‘em right. I like to load mine with all sorts of vegetables, fruits, seeds, nuts, and nice cheese. I’m also a fan of making my own dressing, which, on top of being better for you, adds so much more flavor and depth than your usual store-bought variety. (But if you are using a store-bought, my favorite brand is Briannas, which I’ve mentioned before in a similar recipe.)
I threw together one of my huge salads when I hosted our Bachelorette League at my place last week. Since I was making a big amount and I was a little crunched for time after work, I had my man help me out. And by “my man” I don’t mean my boyfriend Rob. I mean my man Joe. My man TRADER JOE. I got everything I needed from him for this dinner (including a bunch of cheap yet delicious wine, not pictured). Love u forever, TJs.
Honeyed Strawberry, Avocado, and Almond Salad