Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Polar Grill Fest

Usually when you see a flyer for an outdoor event in the dead of winter here in New England your first thoughts are "Pssshhh  No way I am standing outside for beer" or "Get my snowpants! We are drinking beer outside"
My normal January attire....

However, this year for the Red Hook Brewery / Meat House Polar Grill Fest my first thought was "Do I really need a jacket?" Maybe just a puffy vest..

This past Saturday the Polar Grill Fest in Portsmouth NH was as perfect of a day that one could ask for when planning a January outdoor festival.  Temps in the high 40s, not a cloud in the sky and many many happy people just grateful to be outside sipping cold fresh beer and noshing on amazing local food!!!

The reason for this winter outing was to support a great cause and get out of the house on a gorgeous Saturday.  Tickets were just $5 to enter and then $5 for each beer or entree.  For $30 I was full and happy!  Proceeds from the event went towards Share Our Strength (learn more below)


Share Our Strength®, a national nonprofit, is ending childhood hunger in America by connecting children with the nutritious food they need to lead healthy, active lives.

Through its No Kid Hungry® Campaign—a national effort to end childhood hunger in America by 2015—Share Our Strength ensures children in need are enrolled in effective federal nutrition programs; invests in community organizations fighting hunger; teaches families how to cook healthy, affordable meals; and builds public-private partnerships to end childhood hunger, at the state and city level. Working closely with the culinary industry and relying on the strength of its volunteers, Share Our Strength hosts innovative culinary fundraising events and develops pioneering cause marketing campaigns that support No Kid Hungry.

Visit Strength.org to get involved.

Red Hook and The Meat House along with local vendors put on an incredible day.  I think the Oatmeal Pale Ale was my favorite beer of the day!  It was jam packed with dark full flavors but with the smooth taste of an ale.  Well done Red Hook!

We had an awesome time (see below!) and you should make it a point to mark your calendars NOW for next years event!

So many happy people!!!!

favorite dish of the day?  YUP!

Ice bar is melting.....

As you can see, warm temperatures, amazing food, camp fires, music and cold beer makes for a happy group!  Thanks Erica for the awesome photos and thanks to Andy/Alaina for driving down from Maine to join us!!!

Hooray for Beer!

What you don't know is that the beaming light is ALWAYS surrounding him!

Red Hook Portsmouth Brewery Information from their site:
1 Redhook Way Pease International Tradeport
Portsmouth, NH 03801

Built in 1996, Redhook’s brewery in Portsmouth, NH was established to provide East Coasters the same quality and fresh Redhook that loyal drinkers on the West Coast were accustomed to for years. Located in the Pease Tradeport in Portsmouth, the brewery boasts the same architectural style as its Woodinville, WA brother, which was influenced by the brewhouses of Bavaria. The expansive grounds are home to many events and festivities during the summer months, including the popular Redhookfest, usually held in August, which has hosted musicians such as Donovan Frankenreiter and Blues Traveler. If you’re looking to book a private party, our Alemakers Hall which overlooks the brewing tanks is a good choice. And of course our $1 brewery tours have long been known as the best and most fun deal in the area.

Public Brewery Tours:Mon: 3:00, 4:00, 5:00pm
Tue:12:00, 1:00 ,2:00pm Wed & Thu: 1:00, 3:00, 5:00pm
Fri & Sat: 12:00-6:00pm, every hour on the hour
Sun: 1:00pm – 5:00pm on the hour
Starts at the Gift Shop desk.

Note: Public Tour times are subject to change.

Tours cost $1 per person. All tours include a guided walking through the brewery, some Redhook history and an explanation of just how we make our fine ales, and a sampling session with three to four samples of beer and a souvenir tasting glass. Lasts approximately 45-60 minutes. Maximum of 50ppl. (Minors are welcome to attend tour but must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.)

Private tours are available on a limited schedule and cost $3 per person (minimum 15 people per tour). To book a private tour, call 603.501.3940 or CataquaBreweryTours@Redhook.com.

Cataqua Public House
Redhook Brewery’s Cataqua Pub was named after the Piscataqua River that divides New Hampshire and Maine, the third fastest flowing navigable river in the world. “Piscataqua” is a Native American term, metaphorically translated to “a place where people come together, and where they part on their separate ways.” If you’re hungry the Cataqua Pub offers great pub style food and a wide variety of Redhook beers, many of which are served only at the brewery, such as “Live Free or Rye” a German style Rye beer that not so subtlety pays tribute the New Hampshire state motto and ethic. The Cataqua is a great place for beer lovers and is also fun for the whole family. Recent developments include an increased focus on local and organic ingredients. Hops are grown on-site and used in the cask and firkin beers, and a new organic garden with heirloom produce varieties is starting to sprout. Click here for a menu.

For information regarding banquet and conference room reservations please contactPortsmouthEvents@Redhook.com or 603-501-3946.

HoursSunday: 12pm-8pm
Monday – Thursday: 11:30am – 10pm
Friday & Saturday: 11:30am – 11pm
Last call 30 minutes prior to closing.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Wordless Training Walk

This weekend I managed to fit in two training walks for the upcoming AWBC in May.  I still cannot get over this weather in January!  In 5 years of walking here in Boston I have NEVER had a January so mild!!

Below are some photos of my adventures through Boston.  5 miles on Saturday and 10 on Sunday... Enjoy!

umm yeah, it is really late January I swear!

BIG HILL in Beacon Hill

LOVE the NB Minimus Vibrams!!!!

8am at Castle Island

Sunday, January 29, 2012

10 Minute Vegan Dinner

In an attempt to cut dairy from my diet most days I have come up with a few quick dinners that are yummy, filling, colorful and sans cheese!

This was a Friday night concoction that was not only sans dairy but also gluten free thanks to a substitution of rice pasta. Finish the dish with a bunch of fresh basil and nutritional yeast.

Your taste buds will never know that you are eating vegan!

1/3 package of rice pasta
2-3 gloves garlic diced small
Small amount olive oil
Handful of diced basil
6-8 diced Campari tomatoes
1/8 c nutritional yeast

While pasta is cooking heat oil and add garlic. Use medium heat so as not to burn the garlic. Add tomatoes chopped. Spoon pasta into pan, add basil and toss. Finish with nutritional yeast and serve.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPod Touch

Location:Dorset St,,United States

Saturday, January 28, 2012

My cure for the winter blues

Ever notice that come January/February you tend to be in a mid winter rut when it comes to food and life? No....  Just me?  Ok whatever...  I have noticed that as the days get darker and colder I tend to lose that "summer glow" and tend to hibernate over large bowls of mac n' cheese or beef stew.

What I noticed was not only was I packing on the winter pounds but my skin was dull and breaking out more than usual.  I snagged on Kindle a copy of Kimberly Synder's book "The Beauty Detox"

It is a very interesting and a quick read on cleansing your system, changing the order of how to eat your food to digest better,  and tips on eating better long term.

I really enjoyed the book and have taken away some great points from it.  I don't think it is something I am going to commit to 100% but there are several tips that I think will stick with me for the long haul.

They are:
  • Glowing Green Smoothie in the morning
  • Eating a big salad at lunch
  • Eating a vegetarian diet until dinner
  • Reducing/giving up dairy (mainly cows milk)
The first 3 are not major changes to my diet.  In the summer, I usually drink a big green smoothie most days anyways.  The recipe here is a bit different, but after a week of drinking a GIANT one each morning I will admit that the smoothie is very filling even without the addition of yogurt, nut butter or other dairy ingredients I am used to using.

apple, pear, cucumber, celery, spinach, kale, banana are the base to my smoothie

The salad for lunch might over time get a bit boring, but Kimberly has given a lot of recipes to change it up and still keep your meals light and veggie packed during the day.

In her book she suggests eventually going full vegetarian, but I think we all know that is not in the cards for this omnivore.  I do however, like the idea of eating vegetarian most of the week and making your meals with meat in them more special.   I don't eat a ton of meat now, but it is a huge mind shift to not reach for chicken or even fish when prepping dinner.  I foresee many meals focused around beans, sweet potatoes and other filling veggie ingredients.

This last change might be life altering to me!  Growing up and even now as an adult, dairy products were part of my daily diet.  Yogurt at breakfast, Cheese sticks with lunch or as a snack, mac n' cheese dinners, pizza and the perfect grilled cheese.  Could I really think of going without?!

You might ask why I would even consider this when I love dairy and cheese so much!  Well, over the past 2 years or so my acne issue has gotten worse.  I have tried every product under the sun and I was still left with reoccurring acne on my cheeks and chin.  (not great for your self esteem when you are 31!) While reading the book, I learned that dairy can actually cause toxins in your body to be eliminated through your skin causing acne around the chin. 

I figured since I already had given up regular milk years ago for almond milk because of the taste that I would go ahead and try out a non dairy diet for a few weeks and see what happens.  I mean, I can go 2 weeks without dairy right? (oh god....)

Let's just say, I was shocked at how much dairy I was consuming and not even realizing it!  Every time I went to make or order something I was surprised to see that my first option had some version of dairy in it!

However, it has been two weeks and my skin is looking and feeling much better!  The chronic bumps I have had on my chin are gone and the "angry" acne I would get throughout the month is slowly going away leaving me with smaller and clearer pores!

I hate to think that something I love so much has been causing my skin to scream at me for so long!  So what is the plan you ask?

I think going forward I am going to be a non-dairy girl 90% of the time.  I already use almond milk for cooking and coffee.  I have vegan butter for toast and I think most of the meals I cook at home can be sans dairy/cheese.  I have also found goat's milk and coconut milk yogurt (pricey but cheaper than my acne medication!)

Now, when I am out with friends or at a party and there is a cheese plate or an amazing dish with cheese am I going to say no?  NO!  I don't see the harm in savoring and really enjoying cheese or the occasional dairy product now and then.  In fact, I think by reducing my intake during the week I will come to enjoy my dishes that include cheese even more.

So, all in all I would say it is a great read for anyone looking to beat the winter blues in their diet/beauty routine.  She is straight forward and gives you tips on how to be healthier whether you are dipping your toe into the water of detox or diving right into the detox vegan end of the pool.

I will be having a big smoothie this morning and then heading off to New Hampshire for the Red Hook/Meat House Polar Grill Fest.  Come join us won't you?!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Boston Wine Expo Recap

Remember as a teenager you couldn't wait to get out on your own so you didn't have to be with your parents all the time?  I know... how stupid where we?

Now that I am older I love hanging out with my parents and really treasure the time when I get to go out and visit them or when they venture into the city to see me.

This past weekend they did just that, they ventured in on a beautiful Sunday morning for Brunch at the Banshee followed by several hours of perusing & tasting at the Boston Wine Expo.  It was an absolutely  perfect day!  I cannot thank them enough for driving in and spending the day with me!

I am not going to go into detail about the whole expo but let's just say that when this event comes around again you MUST GO!!!  So enjoy my photos that I used Picasa to play with.

A big thanks to the ladies at Be A Thirty Girl and Boston Rue La La for all their help over the weekend! (Swag and discounted tickets!)

Oh hey there TQ!  Why yes, you are the greatest dad ever!!!
Tomorrow we are off to the Red Hook Brewery & Meat House Polar Grill Fest!!  You should join us!!!