Hey Y’all, Check Out These Pictures, Or, Please Don’t Try to Drink This Blog Post…

It’s picture time! I realize I haven’t put up a picture-heavy blog post in a bit, so here’s one coming at’cha!

ALSO: I wrote an article for TigerLyfe Times about Sand City Brewing’s recent Oops! I _____ed My Pants! triple can release! Check that article out over HERE! Thanks for reading!

Radical One from the aforementioned Sand City Brewing. The hop hits keep coming and coming with these guys outta Northport!

#LGM! LIC Beer Project Dutch Kills Kölsch at Citifield! This is my kind of baseball beer! Crisp, malty, fruity and super refreshing!

From Salt House Bar in Galway Ireland! Brouwerij Boon Geuze Mariage Parfait, all the way from Belgium! This beer brought the house down. Tart, funky, dry, and delicious. Absolutely nothing wrong here!

Greenpoint Beer & Ale Co. Particle Pilsner. One of the more hoppy pils’ I’ve had. Bright, crisp citrus is balanced by sweet, cracker like malt. Love it!

A “candid” photograph at Samson’s Birthday party at Greenpoint! Cheers!

Greenpoint Beer & Ale Tremendous. Paired with an, *ahem*, appropriate movie (on VHS, no less!)

My favorite beer of summer, 2017. Carton Brewing Beach, a session Ale with (I believe) Citra hops and orange zest. Bright, beautiful grapefruit and bitter orange, a bit of dankness, but still clean and dry enough and low enough ABV to keep on drinkin’. So, keep on drinkin’!

Also, I’m getting a foot massage whilst I took this photo. So, your opinion is invalid.

Finback x Jacks Abby Spill The Tea IPL. The green tea is a cool addition to the citrus hops and citrus peel, adding a clean, grassy note that’s intriguing. And no need to boil water and risk burning your precious, precious skin. ūüėė

Singlecut Beersmiths strikes again! Some Cat From Japan Session IPA, and Charlie’s Good Tonight IPA. Both phenomenal beers, and I’m hoping they’ll release them again in the future.

I know, I know, this isn’t beer. But when Holly Kay and I found the Dingle Whiskey Bar tucked away inside Fraunces Tavern down in the Financial District of NYC, we had to stop in and have some Irish Whiskey (at triple the price we paid for it on the Emerald Isle, of course). And it was worth every penny.

Bradco brought this beer back from Michigan. Old Nation Brewing Co. M-43 New England Style IPA. These cats from Williamston, MI have nailed this style, which surprised me. Watch out, New England, Michigan’s coming for you. HARD.

Enjoyed this collaboration by Other Half Brewing and Cloudwater Brewing, Tremendous Ideas. The simple can design also lends this can to take beautiful pictures even when an amateur photographer (me) is behind the camera (iPhone). Also my bed looks super comfy and as I’m writing this, I’m minutes away from hopping into it and drifting into a blissful slumber so, that’s also cool.

This was at Paulie Gee’s in Greenpoint. The Hellboy pizza with soppressata picante and Mike’s Hot Honey (yo, MIKE’S HOT HONEY. Who’s this Mike guy? I want to raid his house and take all of his hot honey for my own.). This hot-ass pizza was paired with a Greenpoint Beer & Ale Milk & Honey, a sweet, creamy ale that paired perfectly with the spicy ‘zza, bro.

Threes Brewing SFY (the artist formerly known as SuperF*ckingYawn) IPA, as we prepared for the magical wonder that is the Binky Griptite Orchestra at Threes Greenpoint Location. Binky plays guitar with the Dap Kings, and brought his musician friends to play some amazing 1940s Jazz and R&B and it was absolutely incredible. It was the opposite of SuperF*ckingYawn, but so was this beer, so…

Sometimes, it’s nice to go back to basics. Allagash White, my first Belgian white beer I fell in love with. Simple, refreshing, with notes of orange peel, clove, banana. Sometimes simple is beautiful.

Again, let the hate flow through you. I will combat that hate with Polar Seltzer’s Unicorn Kisses Seltzer. Is it Strawberry Kiwi? We’ll never know. Polar’s been keeping these flavors as mysterious as the mythical beasts on the cans. Damn you, Polar.

Fan favorites Moustache Brewing Co. made this delightful Saison brewed with Lavender, Honey, and Lemon Verbena. They knocked it out of the park, with floral, sweet, banana, and citrus dancing mischievously around the palate, this beer is simply a delight. Love you, Moustache Gang!

Thanks to my dear friend Will Russell, for asking me to be a part of his wedding party. As part of our Groomsmen’s gift, he got us these HEAVY DUTY USS Enterprise Bottle Openers. This is insanely dope and I will use it always. Make it so.

Treehouse Brewing Company, if you don’t know, now you know. Christopher Benedict, if you don’t know, now you know. Get with the times, y’all.

Interboro Spirits & Ales x Pipeworks Brewing Mad Fat! Unicorn. Thanks Bradco for sharing!! Mad Fat! Fluid plus Ninja Vs. Unicorn equals an amazing liquid combo. New York x Chicago, taking over the world.

If you’re not salivating by now, you need to let me know, and I’ll take you out and buy you a beer. So, if you’ve made it this far, and it’s had no effect on you, let me know. The next one’s on me.

Until next time!

Cheers!

Galway Pt. II, or, I’m Not a Creep But I Did Facebook Friend Our Waiter at Blakes Because He Was Awesome…

**HELLO!  Before we begin, you can still donate to Galway Hospice HERE (We talked about it last week), Alan and the Galway Bay Brewery boys have raised nearly 10,000 Euro total!!  Click the link and donate!**

When last we left you, dear, sweet readers, Holly Kay and I had just tapped out after our ___th Murphy’s Irish Stout, and headed back to our B&B for a long winter’s nap… ¬†(See Galway Bay Brewery Pt. I if you haven’t read it, then head on back here!)

Our next morning, we had our full Irish Breakfast and drove into Galway on our quest for Irish Sweaters! ¬†We’d been looking in each town for the perfect sweaters (because ya have to!!) and we stumbled upon the Galway Woollen Market, a quaint little shop with two floors of many different styles of Aran Islands Knitwear. ¬†Holly ended up with two sweaters, one purple, and one green, which make her look really cute and Irish, and I ended up with a lovely navy blue sweater with big brown wooden buttons that, in my humble opinion, makes me look like Paddington Bear, which is also cute (but not Irish) (but still cute. ¬†I’m cute.)img_2379This picture also made it into last week’s blog, but Holly’s too cute for me to just post it once, and also, it’s right in front of the Galway Woollen Market!!

img_2381HK Drinking a Latte at Coffeewerk + Press in Galway City!

img_2396Coffeewerk was such a cool space!

After our morning shopping in Galway, and because we were spending two nights, we planned an afternoon SPA DAY (!!!) at the Shore Island Spa at the Loughrea Hotel and Spa, just outside of Galway City.  We decided on a Couples Afternoon package, which included a massage, facial, the Rasul Mud Chamber (which is something I never need to do, ever again), and 90 minutes in the Thermal Relaxation Suite, which had saunas, steam rooms, a jacuzzi, and two relaxation rooms, one dark, with color lights all over the ceiling, and one light, overlooking the gorgeous Lough Rea.

It was a wonderful few hours, and a nice period where we could stop, breathe, and reflect on our beautiful vacation.

When we got back to Galway, we parked our car back at the B&B and walked the 10 minutes into Galway City. ¬†Our new friend Darren (the Irish Whiskey aficionado) recommended we visit Garavan’s, the bar he manages. ¬†We ran into our OTHER new friend Sjef, behind the bar, who recommended a few places to eat. ¬†Both Sjef and the other bartender recommended a pub called Blakes Bar, a lovely little pub attached to a restaurant called Brasserie on the Corner, with a small, artisanal menu. ¬†Holly and I shared everything, Chili and Sesame chicken wings (which came in a giant bowl and the wings were covered in the sweet, spicy chili and sesame sauce), an Irish Cheese Board (BECAUSE WHY NOT?) and a Beef Burger. ¬†We figured if our night was going to be anything like the night before (beer emoji beer emoji beer emoji winking face emoji) we wanted to make sure our bellies were full.

The food was great, but our experience was made perfect by our server, James. ¬†He was just as knowledgeable as Darren (and had been to some whiskey conferences with him) and well versed in all the Irish Whiskeys on the menu. ¬†He made some suggestions, and we ordered the¬†Powers John’s Lane, a 12 year old Single Pot Still, aged in both bourbon and sherry casks which is named after the address of the original Powers distillery. ¬†It was smooth, with dark fruits, caramel, vanilla and toffee. ¬†Here’s how it went down… ¬†Holly Kay: “I’d like that on the rocks.” ¬†James: “Nooooooooo…” ¬†So he brought them out neat, and we enjoyed them neat, and it was an absolutely lovely accompaniment to our full meal.

Our expectations on this trip were to experience some of the quintessential Irish hospitality, and James at Blake’s Bar went above and beyond our expectations, chatting with us about whiskey (as Darren had the night before), and what we’d done on our trip so far. ¬†He turned what was an already good meal into a wonderful experience. ¬†And now we’re friends on Facebook (I’m not creepy!!) ¬†Cheers, James!

We then headed back to Garavan’s, and¬†went with one of Darren and Alan’s suggestions from the night before, Green Spot, another Single Pot Still, with flavors of vanilla, citrus, and mint. ¬†We caught the end of some live music, which was great Craic!

Live Music at Garavans! (apologies for the vertical video, it was a Facebook Live)

img_2385Christmas came early in Galway!

img_2384It was cold outside, but it was Nut Hot in here!

After Garavans, we went to the Salt House, Galway Bay Brewery‘s other pub in Galway City, and met up again with Alan…img_2394You all remember Alan from last week’s post… ¬†This¬†no-longer-bearded beauty and his GBB family raised nearly 10,000 Euro for Galway Hospice, and you can still donate HERE!

We met up with Alan and his wife Danielle, and Laurien (whose husband Will is the head brewer for GBB)… ¬†Laurien and Will are transplants from Georgia, and it was fun that my Mississippi gal got to hang out with another southerner!

img_2393‘Allo Harvey! ¬†This little gal belongs to Alan and Danielle! ¬†What a face!!

Wait, so, this is a blog about beer?

Alright, let’s get to it…

As soon as we arrived, Alan greeted us, and said to Holly Kay, “I know more than anybody when you hit that wall… ¬†And last night, at around 11pm, I noticed that you’d hit that wall. ¬†And when I woke up this morning, I felt kind of bad for ya…” ¬†Holly said “Don’t feel bad!¬†¬†We had an amazing time!” ¬†Apparently, Alan, Darren, and Sjef¬†left Lonergan’s and headed to… ¬†Where else? ¬†The Casino! ¬†These guys are professionals, and have way more stamina than I do…

I was handed a glass of Galway Bay Brewery’s Full Sail IPA (which I spoke about in last week’s post), which is a balanced, citrusy wonderland of Irish fun…

img_2387I drank x2 of these… ¬†Trolltunga by Buxton Brewing¬†from England,¬†in collaboration with Lervig Brewery in Norway. ¬†This was a sour IPA, with tart, tropical peach, grapefruit, and pine. ¬†Absolutely unreal stuff. ¬†Alan was so excited about it (he was drinking it when we got there) and it was wonderful.

img_2386My Dad’s favorite beer! ¬†So nice to see some US craft on draught!

img_2388Holly ordered the Buxton Brewery Extra Porter, brewed with Guatemalan Coffee… ¬†Super bitter, roasty chocolate, coffee, dark cherries, floral, smokey. ¬†Another fantastic brew. ¬†We’ve got to find our way to England to try more of their beer!

We were so happy to be able to spend time with our new friend, Alan, and to have met Danielle and Laurien. ¬†Galway is a magical city, and that was only emphasized by all the hospitality we experienced while we were there. ¬†We’ll absolutely be back (Alan, you got a spare room?)

Until next time!

Cheers!

Irish Whiskey Experience, or The Events That Lead Patrick and Holly Kay to a Denjoe’s at Nearly Midnight

Another from my Sexy Posing in Front of Breweries, Pubs, and Historic Sites series… ¬†Kilkenny Castle.

After spending our afternoon exploring Kilkenny and Kilkenny Castle, we drove nearly 3 hours to check into our first B&B in Killarney, the quaint Windway House.

It was a 7 minute walk to the Downtown area of Killarney, which, even when not decorated for Christmas, looks and feels like it.  We were exhausted, and starving, but we wanted to relax for a few minutes, and had a cup of tea in the shared lobby area, and our host Frank greeted us warmly and recanted stories about his daughter who had moved to New York.  He was the sweetest man, and had exactly the Irish hospitality we were hoping for when we chose to do a B&B heavy vacation.

We took the quick walk into the city, and had read about a restaurant called the Irish Whiskey Experience and Celtic Whiskey Bar and Larder in our research on Trip Advisor.

The entryway to Irish Whiskey Experience, adorned with barrel bottoms!

Irish Whiskey Experience has 5 stars on Trip Advisor, and all the reviews we read said that even without the whiskey, the food is incredible. ¬†So… ¬†Good food? ¬†Check. ¬†Good Whiskey? ¬†Check. ¬†And oh yeah, this is a blog about Beer. ¬†Good craft beer. ¬†Check.

My dear sweet Lord… ¬†Am I in heaven?

We sat at a table for two, with a large collection of Irish Whiskeys behind a glass partition lining one side of the restaurant, across from the bar. ¬†We were told by our server that the Whiskey behind that glass wasn’t for sale, but more of a collection, and there were some pretty rare bottles. ¬†We were handed menus, and greeted by some delicious looking Gastropub style food, and an extensive drinks list.

Holly Kay in front of a drinkable (well, not for us) museum!

Holly had the Dubliner Cocktail, with Powers Three Swallow Whiskey, Carpano Antica, Thyme-infused Grand Marnier (holy lord) and Orange Bitters.  It was out of this world!

I knew that Holly would be ordering Whiskey (because she’s amazing) so I ordered a fantastic India Pale Lager (a massively hopped lager) called Remix, from Trouble Brewing in Kill (yup, real place), Ireland.

India Pale Lagers are growing in popularity here in the US, so I was surprised to see one in Ireland, and this stands up to some of the Northeast style, hopped up beers I’m so lucky to have here in NY (I compared it to an IPL I had recently tried from Singlecut Beersmiths in Astoria). ¬†The fact that it’s a lager makes it a bit smoother around the edges, the sweetness from the malt balances out the amazing citrus (grapefruit, mango, pineapple) from the hops.

Let’s talk food. ¬†First, we shared the Artisinal Cheese Board (because OF COURSE WE DID!). ¬†Didn’t get a picture of this. ¬†We’d been driving for several hours before this and basically inhaled it.

You’re not seeing things. ¬†Pork Belly, garlic-roasted spinach, baked potatoes, apple sauce, and brown gravy.

Holly had an 8oz Fillet Steak (because, I failed to mention, I married a beautiful, female version of Ron Swanson, and I couldn’t be happier), with green beans in a whiskey cream sauce, and frites (that’s french fries. ¬†Eat ’em.)

I was too busy inhaling my pork belly to get a picture of the steak, but it melted in my mouth when I bit into it. ¬†We were told by several people before we left that the food isn’t great in Ireland. ¬†Restaurants like the Celtic Whiskey Bar and Larder¬†are changing this stereotype. ¬†So, get here.

I DID take a picture of the beer I had with my meal… ¬†So, hold up whilst I insert this amazingness into your mind grapes…

img_2236Brouwerij Boon Oude Geuze Boon (2013-2014). ¬†See here¬†for the description, but this is a blend of young and aged sour ales, creating a funky, tart, sour with notes of red wine, citrus, and wood. ¬†This is the closest I’ve ever been to Belgium (hopefully not for long), but it was a perfect compliment to the salty pork belly. ¬†(And you can see Holly’s steak!)

Also, please refer to my post about Sour Beers and pucker up for more fun!

After dinner, we decided to explore more of Killarney, and ended up in a Dunnes, which is like a hybrid Target and Macy’s, with a grocery store. ¬†And, surprise, surprise, Patrick found the beer section!

img_2238Ireland is stepping up its craft beer game!

img_2241

After galavanting around Dunnes, we went to Sheehan’s Bar, on the recommendation from Frank, as they have live traditional Irish Music, followed by Danny Mann’s, which had modern Folk music playing.

img_2242Because we couldn’t stay away, we finished off our evening in gorgeous Killarney with a nightcap back at the Irish Whiskey Experience!

Our legs were jelly at this point (you know, Irish Whiskey….), and we hadn’t eaten in a few hours, so, like real adults, we found ourselves at a DenJoes, which is a hybrid pizza and fried chicken joint, and ordered a two piece fried chicken meal with chips, and enjoyed seeing all the late-night locals who had probably more than we’d had to drink, especially the one lad who was sitting at a table and kept gesturing to us and saying “These are reservvvvvved,” and giggling. ¬†He must have said it five times. ¬†When his friends joined him, one of them took one bite of chicken and promptly fell asleep. ¬†We walked the short block back to our awesome B&B and had one hell of a night’s sleep.

YO, IRELAND IS AMAZING. ¬†IF YOU HAVEN’T, Y’ALL SHOULD GO.

And if you go, go to Killarney, and go to Irish Whiskey Experience and Celtic Whiskey Bar and Larder.

Christmas in Killarney.  Irish Whiskey.  Craft Beer.  AMAZING Food.  Adventure.  Love.  This was absolutely the trip of a lifetime.

Until next time, I love you all!

Cheers!