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Beer, Wine, and a Real Good Time

Regular readers know I am more of a wine aficionado than a beer drinker.  But I love beer, too, especially locally brewed. I got both yesterday when my friendnd Kim and I went to Heelpath Brewing in Frankfort.

I always admire chalk art.

Mindful of the times, we wore our masks in and sat six feet away from each other and other patrons.  Luckily the music was not loud, so conversation was not a problem.  The proprietor, Jeff, bid us welcome from behind the bar.

They did not have Kim’s favorite, Moscato, so I suggested she would like Sweet Little Blonde from Rustic Ridge Winery in Burlington Flats.  I spent some time dithering between a glass of their Untamed Red or a flight of beers.  I finally settled on a flight of beers, so I could take tasting notes for the blog.

I also took this picture to post on the Utica Beer Geeks Facebook page.

The first one I tried was the Pilsner.  Jeff said it was his first attempt at a pilsner and he may not have nailed it.  I liked it.  It tasted like a beer beer, if you see what I mean.  That is, my father who loves beer but is not a big fan of craft beers would like it.

I was especially interested in trying the Jalapeno Cream Ale.  Jeff said it surprised some people, because there was not a lot of heat to it.  I, personally, do not mind a little heat.  It instantly earned my ultimate accolade of YUMMY!  Not a lot of heat, but a strong jalapeno flavor I found delicious.

The Arctic Red Ale was not as light as the previous two but not heavy by any means.  I put in my tasting notes that it tasted red but not arctic.  I picked it because I had been so uncomfortably warm, and, you know, arctic, cold.  Which was really silly of me, because what did I expect?  It was cold beer.  How could it taste any colder?  This is one reason why I am not a professional beer taster.

My least favorite of the four was the American Ale.  I am not sure how else to describe it, which is another reason I am not a professional beer taster.

Kim enjoyed wine while I had my beer.

After my tasting, Kim and I went for a short walk by the water.  It was really too warm for me to enjoy the great outdoors.  Additionally,  the water levels were quite low. We decided to go back in for more wine.

I thought the big dead branch was cool.

This time I had the Untamed Red.  I love it, and the only place I can get it is at Heelpath or at the winery itself.  I told Kim we must plan a road trip to Burlington Flats.

Enjoying a glass of wine with the proprietor.

For more information on Rustic Ridge Winery, you can visit their Facebook page or their website http://www.rusticridgewinery.com.  Heelpath Brewing Company’s website is http://www.heelpathbrewingco.com.  They are also on Facebook.

 

 

I Don’t Whine, I Wine!

Did I mention that I joined a wine group on Facebook?   I think I must have (regular readers will understand that I am too lazy to go back and check).  Well, one reason I was so tired yesterday was that I spent a great deal of time driving around looking for porches to leave wine in front of.  No, I do not have GPS nor yet  smart phone I can look directions up on.  I don’t even have a local street map, if such a thing is still available (note to self: look for a local street map).

It was fun putting these together.

I fixed up six packages.  I had purchased inexpensive wine from Valley Wine and Liquor in Herkimer and beer from Beer Belly Bob’s in Ilion.  I also utilized the dollar store.  I re-used tissue paper from my collection.  Waste not, want not, I always say.

My first stop!

My first two stops were at friends’ places I had been at before.  And yet I drove by Kim’s house twice before making it there.

I was concerned by the lack of a roof.

I drove away from this place and drove back to take the picture.  It had stopped raining when I left the stuff there, only to start up again later.  Next time, I will cover things in plastic or pick a sunny day for deliveries.

One of the prettier porches I saw.

The above was one of the easier ones to find.  I did not get pictures of the others.  At one, the door opened before I got there.  At another, I was parked in a no parking zone and wanted to hurry.  By the last, I was just done!

It was fun to drive around, except for when I got lost, something I have rather a talent for.  I was glad to spread some cheer.  I may do it again!

 

Cinema Followed Scattered

I shall attempt a Saturday Cinema post.  We are in fact in the midst of the movie-watching portion of the day.  I am even missing one of my favorite scenes in The Bad Seed as I type this.

Crazy eyes!

Before The Bad Seed, we saw a flick with several killer kids with even crazier eyes: Village of the Damned, screened by Svengoolie.  We DVR all the Svengoolie episodes we can.

I need more rubber chickens in my life.

Before Svengoolie,  we watched one of our all time favorites,  Deathtrap.

Christopher Reeve and Michael Caine, up to no good?

We have not been watching movies all day.  This morning I wrote a few post cards and walked with them to the post office.  I took a long way home, because it was such a beautiful day.  Before leaving for the post office, I put a load of laundry in the washer.  I’m afraid that is the extent of my multi-tasking.  I was happy to be able to hang the laundry on the clothesline.

While the laundry flapped in the breeze, I wrestled the garage door up and hauled out my non-power mower.  Pushing that sucker up and down the lawn is some good exercise.  I figured that would make up for my not running this morning.

I rewarded myself for the yard work with a cold beer, purchased at Beer Belly Bob’s in Ilion (just to sneak in a plug for a local business).  Steven sat with me on the porch while I enjoyed my beverage.  We were both delighted that it was warm enough to do so.

So I guess my blog post has been both Cinema and Scattered Saturday.  Perhaps I should celebrate with another beer.

 

I Wasn’t Tired When I Tasted

Cute girl with beer, what’s not to like?

 

So there I was, feeling too tired to make a blog post.  I went to my pictures, wondering if I could come up with something, and my thumb accidentally hit this delightful shot.  This is Emily at Beer Belly Bob’s Discount Beverage in Ilion, NY.  She is pouring us a growler, which we purchased after a tasting recently.

I picked up a couple of stickers and coasters, as I usually do at these things.

The tasting was Buried Acorn Brewing Company, which is located in Syracuse, NY.  Steven and I visit Syracuse on occasion, usually to visit my sister Diane and her family (they live in Liverpool, which is practically Syracuse).  We immediately began to plan when we can go to Acorn with Diane and her husband, Chris.

I thought this was a good pose.

I wanted to get a picture of John, who poured and told us about the brews.  At first he just stood and smiled, which was nice.  Then he reached into the tub for another beer to pour, and I said, “Wait! Smile!”  I’m nobody’s great photographer,  but I liked this.

We tasted a few good brews, but unfortunately I did not take good notes.  This is why I should make my blog posts sooner after I have these Mohawk Valley Adventures.  On the other hand, this is a better blog post than I had thought myself capable of making (or do I flatter myself?).

Buried Acorn Brewing Company is located at 881 Van Rensselaer St., Syracuse, NY, phone number 315-552-1499, web site http://www.BuriedAcorn.com.

Route 51 Beer Belly Bob’s Discount Beverage is located at 70 Otsego St., Ilion, NY, phone number 315-895-0936.  You can Like them on Facebook.

 

Be of Good Beer

Note to self: Do not go to the bowling alley for a beer with the guys after work.  Oh, it was fun, and the bowling alley has a very pleasant bar, but one beer easily turns into three when generous co-workers start buying rounds. It actually could have been four or five, but we passed our last upside down shot glasses over to guys with harder heads.  For feeling like a fatty so much of the time, I am kind of a lightweight when it comes to beer.

So here I am Saturday morning making my Lame Post Friday post.  We’ll, what could be more lame than my excuse for not making a post yesterday?  After all, I have been known to drink and type before.  Unfortunately, I have also been known to drink and fall asleep on the couch, which is what I did last night.

I must make a further note to myself to make my Saturday post sometime in the afternoon.  We have plans with our friends Jim, Phyllis, and Kim.  I can pretty much guarantee the wine will flow.

I guess I am showing myself as quite the lush.  It could be true, but I do not always over-indulge.  But when one is hanging out with friends and having a lot of laughs…  In other words, no promises.

 

Red Shed Brewery at Beer Belly Bob’s

On a recent Friday evening, Steven and I ventured out to Beer Belly Bob’s in Ilion, NY.  They don’t have tastings every week, so we were happy we saw this one on Facebook.  When we realized it was for an area brewery,  we were delighted. I am happy to recommend Red Shed Brewery of Cherry Valley and Cooperstown.

As we walked in, one of the other people tasting said, “She’ll write an article about you!”  I felt famous.

Red Shed would definitely be a good thing for me to write about for Mohawk Valley Living magazine, but I want to visit one of their tap rooms first.  For now I will content myself with a blog post.  David Olson, the man pouring gave me a card, and I have already visited their Facebook page.  I hope to make a trip to Cooperstown soon!

David Olson, one of the folks responsible for some yummy beer.

The first brew we tried was Jessica’s Red.  It won my ultimate accolade of “yummy.”  We went on to Cloudy Girl, which was very fruity.  I did not like it as much as Jessica’s Red, but thought it would be a good summer drink.  The Smoked Porter was heavy, smoky (of course), and very dark  It was tasty, but I could not drink a lot of it.

Steven, enjoying a taste.

 

Red Shed is only available on draft right now, but we were able to purchase a growler for a very good price.

Jessica’s Red in Beer Belly Bob’s growler.

For more information about Red Shed Brewery, you can go to redshedbrewing.com. or visit their Facebook page.

Route 51 Beer Belly Bob’s Discount Beverage Center is located at 70 Otsego St., Ilion, NY, phone number 315-895-0936.  You can find them on Facebook, too!

 

My Favorite Lame Post Friday

Lame Post Friday is getting lamer and lamer, I fear.  Perhaps I am coming to the end of my usefulness as a blogger.  SAY IT AIN’T SO!!!!!

I have been having a fun evening.  My husband, Steven, and I went with our friend Kim to a beer tasting at Route 51 Beer Belly Bob’s Discount Beverage Center in Ilion. We purchased some beer, of course.  I do not drink as much beer as I used to, but sometimes a beer really hits the spot.

Kim had commitments elsewhere, so Steven and I continued to dinner alone at Salvatore’s in Herkimer.  We had soup and garlic knots.  Yum! Then Steven had a cup of coffee and I inadvisedly had a piece of chocolate spoon cake for dessert.  Oh, was it ever good!  However, it was also very rich and filling.  If I dare to step on the scale tomorrow morning I will no doubt find I have jumped up three or four pounds.

Now we are home, and Steven put in our DVD of Mr. Magoo’s Christmas Carol, one of his (and my) favorites.

Oh, sure, just give away the ending!

Christmas time is all about revisiting old favorites, isn’t it?  When we got to Salvatore’s, we had to sit in the parking lot to hear the ending of “Do They Know It’s Christmas” by Band Aid.  I love that song and had not heard it yet this year.  Inside the restaurant, we enjoyed more favorites:   “Jingle Bell Rock,” “Sleigh Ride,” and Brenda Lee’s “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,”  as well as another favorite I had not heard yet this year:  Paul McCartney’s “Wonderful Christmas Time.”

Well, talking about that has put me in a sweet, cuddly Christmas mood. I’m going to knit and watch the rest of this Christmas special.  Full disclosure:  next I may watch Dateline.  After all, I still gotta be me. Happy Friday, everyone.

 

A Brain With No Beer?

I really wanted to make today’s blog post about beer.  Beer Belly Bob’s was having a tasting, and I need to get more beer anyways.  I always feel more secure when I have beer in the fridge, even now that I rarely drink it.  Unfortunately, the scheduled tasting was cancelled.  I’ll have to get over there and purchase some beer for the fridge, but I just didn’t have enough oomph to leave the house again tonight.

Do I have enough oomph to make a blog post? The answer has to be yes, of course.  It helps that today is Lame Post Friday.

Only I don’t have a blu-ray.

Yes, we are watching The Brain That Wouldn’t Die (1962), which I believe I referenced in a blog post earlier this week.  It is one of my favorite cheesy movies.  I need more cheesy movie watching in my life.

That reminds me of a few guys I used to date.

I just thought I’d throw in a picture of the monster from that movie, perhaps to distract from the fact that this is a particularly lame Friday post.

I was just looking all through the pictures on Beer Belly Bob’s Facebook page, but I did not see any that would particularly enhance today’s post.  What to do?  Admit I am lame and move on?  Or search obsessively for a photo that fits?  Or just throw in a picture I like, hit publish and get back to enjoying my Friday?  I think you know what I am going to pick.

“What are you bothering me for?”

You just knew I was going to pick Nosferatu, didn’t you? Happy Friday, everyone.

 

Several Shout-outs on a Scattered Saturday

Once again I pause in my gyrations to make a Scattered Saturday post.  Steven and I are waiting for some people to come over tonight.  It is a Thanks for the Mayhem party for people who participated in our murder mysteries in the past couple of years.  Oh dear, I hope I did not neglect to invite somebody who reads my blog.  I do not have the most reliable memory, and I have done quite a few murder mysteries.  Anyways, I have to have another party, because a lot of people can’t make it tonight.

I began my morning earlier than expected on a Saturday, but that was OK, because I had gone to bed earlier with a stomach ache on Friday (perhaps you read my blog post about it).  My stomach felt better, so I had some coffee and listened to the rain fall.  I do not usually go running in the rain.  And right after the rain, there a lot of puddles I do not necessarily enjoy running through.  However, when the rain stopped, I ran anyways and just did not worry about the puddles.  I wore an older pair of running shoes.

Back home, I wrote a few post cards.  I was delighted to have some new ones to send.  My Mom and Dad went on a bus trip with their church and picked me up a bunch.  I rarely travel myself, but I am fortunate to have family and friends that do.  By now it was raining again, making a walk to the post office ineligible.  That was all right, though, because Steven and I had several errands to run.

After a stop by the post office, we went to Cash for Cans on South Washington Street in Herkimer, NY (where we live, in case you didn’t know) and redeemed a LOT of cans and bottles.  Then we went to AmeriCU Credit Union to deposit a check (we like credit unions), then to Hannaford for groceries and party munchies.  Back home, we cleaned industriously, although my coffee table is still quite the mess.  Steven nicely said we would call it a Work in Progress and it could be a topic of conversation. I do like to entertain my guests.

Around 11:30 we went to Route 51 Beer Belly Bob’s Discount Beverage Center in Ilion, to taste and purchase beer.  Brown’s Brewing Company of Troy, NY was there.  We had a great time and bought some yummy beer.  I want to do a whole blog post about it. I also plan to return to Beer Belly Bob’s when Brown’s is back sometime.  Oh, as well as returning when I run out of the beer I bought.  Beer Belly Bob’s is where I get my beer!

Since we also drink wine, we made a quick stop at Ilion Wine and Spirits for a bottle of Barefoot Pinot Noir.  I had a craving for some Barefoot Pinot Noir.  I will be delighted to open it in a few hours (oh, do I have to wait a few hours?  Maybe I can start sipping a little early).

Wow, I did a lot.  I haven’t even talked about the fixing, mixing, and chopping I have done so far.  I will just mention that I enjoyed a cup of iced coffee flavored with just a touch of Mohawk Valley Fire Moonshine from DikinDurt Distillery of Herkimer.  Just to give another shout-out.

So I think this has been a pretty good Scattered Saturday post (or do I flatter myself?).  Now I’ve got to get back to finishing my fixings. I do love to entertain.  Happy Saturday, everyone.

 

I Would Rather Write

Well, I ran this morning and I was going to do a Running Commentary, a fairly profound one, because I Wore Blue and Ran to Remember.  That is a thing I found out about a few years ago:  Wear Blue, Run to Remember.  Then again, sometimes those posts come across as an ego thing:  Look at ME!  I ran to remember!  I am ALL about the Veterans!  Anyways, it wasn’t that great of a run.  Not necessarily worthy of those who have given the ultimate sacrifice.

I’m thinking I cannot say anything deep about Memorial Day, certainly nothing better than what others have said.  What I will do instead is give a quick shout-out to a local business, after sharing with you a few of my tribulations as a would-be novelist.

As my day wore on today, I was not getting a whole lot useful done, especially not beginning the new novel I wanted to.  Yes, I have many novels I have started and not finished.  I would, of course, like to finish one of those. First I have to find it!  You have no idea what a mess my house is.  I would have to spend a month cleaning before I found and could continue work on an already-started novel.  To clean or to write?  You know I would rather write!

First I couldn’t find a notebook with that many blank pages.  Above all, I wanted to avoid writing my new novel in multiple notebooks which I would certainly lose track of. That is what happened to my previous attempts.  Maybe I could go to a store and purchase a new notebook.  I love having a new notebook.  Then I found the last new notebook I had started a novel in (not a very good one). It was a BIG notebook, and I had only started ONE novel in it.  This could work.

But not in my living room.  I wrote a few post cards, which I had not done on Saturday as usual, and I walked to the post office with them.  A walk often helps stir the creative juices.  What it stirred in me was the desire to NOT write at my own house.  I wanted to GO somewhere.  All the libraries are closed for the holiday.  Also, I wanted a beer.

Finally I decided to go to Asteroga Ale House, a handy 10-minute walk from my house.  I got a beer and sat at a table that got nice natural light from outside.  Alas, I could not get a Sam Adams draft, which is a fine thing to drink on a patriotic holiday.  I got a local IPA instead, opened my notebook, and discovered that the lovely pen I had clipped to the spirals was gone.  Dammit!  I searched through my purse and did not like any of the pens I found.  I wrote a few paragraphs regarding my search then told myself it was merely an excuse and tried to get to work.

In fact, I don’t know that it was entirely an excuse.  Tools can make a real difference in creative endeavors.  I may write a whole blog post about that, although I daresay I have touched upon the subject already.  Be that as it may, I actually got quite a bit done.  I started by jotting down vague ideas, then moved to more concrete ideas, and ended up writing a list of character names and some definite notes about those characters and how the plot is going to go.

I shan’t type anything more specific about it, though, because if you talk about something too much, you no longer feel you have to write it.  That is a well-known phenomenon.

In the meantime, I highly recommend Asteroga Ale House as a place to go and have a beer or two (or other beverage or even food), whether or not you have a novel to start.  They are located at 122 W. Albany St., Herkimer, NY, phone number 315-219-5578.  I am back home now and wondering if I ought to have another beer.