Browsing Category "Bars, Booze, Beer, Etc."
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We finally visit Ridge, my favorite winery

By     |    Aug 16, 2012
Posted in: Bars, Booze, Beer, Etc., Best Of, California, Wine     |    No Comments

When our friend, Ben, worked at a wine store in Chicago, he was always discovering interesting bottles and generously sharing them with us. This is how I had my first taste of Zinfandel from Ridge. I’ll always remember the bottle of Geyserville 2003 (or 2004?): the simple, clean label, the unexpectedly complex and delicious flavors. After my Ridge introduction, I was always on the lookout for sales or for excuses to […]

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Korbel-Brandy

Wisconsin Drinks a lot of Korbel Brandy

By     |    Aug 16, 2012
Posted in: Bars, Booze, Beer, Etc., California, Wisconsin     |    3 Comments

Fun fact: Wisconsin drinks 1/3 of all the brandy Korbel makes: “Wisconsin is our number one state,” says Margie Healy, director of public relations for the California-based Korbel. “We export 385,000 cases a year, and 139,000 go directly to Wisconsin. That’s one-third of our total production.” Fake fact: 75% of all brandy consumed in the US is consumed in Wisconsin. (Not true, sadly.) Growing up, my grandmother always had a […]

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The Kenwood tasting room.

We Return to Kenwood Winery

By     |    Aug 15, 2012
Posted in: Bars, Booze, Beer, Etc., California, Wine     |    No Comments

We visited Kenwood in 2006, way back in the day, when Lisa and I lucked into a trip to Sonoma. We loved it. Lisa was DD that day, and I’m pretty sure I sampled every one of their wines. There are maybe 30 on the tasting list. We returned to revisit the wines and learn about the Yulupa Zinfandel that Lisa declared the $10 bottle of wine closest to her […]

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$2.50 martini!

Skip Willi’s Wine Bar for Happy Hour at Stark’s Steakhouse in Sonoma

By     |    Aug 15, 2012
Posted in: Bars, Booze, Beer, Etc., California     |    No Comments

We needed a snack. We’d decided to head to Willi’s Wine Bar, so I looked at their website to check their happy hour deals. They had none. Digging deeper, I found that their sister restaurant, Stark’s Steakhouse, has the “best happy hour deals in Sonoma.” Hooray for the internet! Here’s the deal: Beefeater martinis for $2.50, cheap food specials, and wine and beer deals. The place is just north of […]

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Iron Horse's tasting "room."

“California Champagne”

By     |    Aug 14, 2012
Posted in: Bars, Booze, Beer, Etc., California, Wine     |    No Comments

We first visited the Sonoma and Napa Valleys in 2006 — we loved Sonoma, but Napa, not so much. Anytime we leave a wine region, we feel like we’ve missed tons of great stuff, or we find a favorite wine after the fact. Happily, we were able to return to Sonoma to visit some new/missed favorites — Korbel Winery and Iron Horse Vineyards. But first, a digression on wine place-names. […]

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Oysters at Oyster Shack, South Bend, WA.

We Luck Into Willapa Bay Oysters

By     |    Jul 31, 2012
Posted in: Bars, Booze, Beer, Etc., Best Of, Food, Washington     |    No Comments

It was Jeff’s tip that aimed us towards Willapa Bay. He mentioned an oyster place he liked, located right on the bay in Bay Center. We found Bay Center, but we never found the restaurant. We drove every road in town, some of them twice, a couple three times, and couldn’t find it. But we found a whole lot more. An Afternoon Snack at Oyster Shack We needed a snack as […]

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Late-harvest vino and chips and salsa.

Wine Pairing: Sweet Wine with Chips and Salsa

By     |    Jul 30, 2012
Posted in: Bars, Booze, Beer, Etc., Parks, Washington, Wine     |    2 Comments

We’re fans of Champagne and potato chips. They’re great together. Champagne and popcorn is good too, but we really like the chips (“crisps” for our British readers). This duo is just as good. Got a bottle of sweet wine but don’t want to wait until dessert to drink it? Grab some chips and salsa. Here’s why it works: the sweetness of the wine takes the edge off both the saltiness […]

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Fresh like a 100-year-old glacier!

Beers of the Northern Rockies and the Northwest

By     |    Jul 19, 2012
Posted in: Bars, Booze, Beer, Etc., Idaho, Montana, Washington, Wyoming     |    1 Comment

Read the stats and we’re a Budweiser nation. Travel around, and it seems like nobody drinks the stuff. Milwaukee and the rest of Wisconsin is a Miller strong-hold that spreads into the surrounding area. Same with Yuengling and the Pennsylvania area and Coors and Colorado. Meanwhile, Upstate New York loves its Labatt Blue. The only place that seems to support Bud is St. Louis – no surprise there. So what gets […]

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002 (Small)

Unimaginable Luxury at The Modern Hotel and Bar in Boise

By     |    Jul 5, 2012
Posted in: Bars, Booze, Beer, Etc., Hotels, Idaho     |    No Comments

The Modern Hotel and Bar is the best hotel, and bar, in Boise. It may be the best hotel, and bar, in the entire state of Idaho. The Hotel After camping for six weeks straight, it’s hard to overemphasize how luxurious our room at The Modern felt. We’d been daydreaming about this room for at least a week before we arrived. We dreamed about the comfy bed, gigantic rain shower, […]

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Ernest Hemingway's gravestone in Ketchum, ID.

Visiting Hemingway’s Grave in Ketchum, Idaho

By     |    Jul 3, 2012
Posted in: Bars, Booze, Beer, Etc., Books, Idaho     |    No Comments

Ernest Hemingway’s grave is in Ketchum, Idaho. The gravestone is spare and reserved. It’s off the main road, under a grove of trees, next to members of his family, and decorated with notes, coins, and the occasional bottle of booze. His gravestone reminded me of Mies Van Der Rohe’s gravestone in Chicago. The setting reminded me of Ernest Hemingway. Paris is the city I most associate with Ernest Hemingway. When there, we […]

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