Five Years. Holy Cow, Five Years.

I have been blogging for five years now. It’s kinda overwhelming to consider, honestly. I’ve published (as of this post) 508 posts, so theoretically a rate of 100 posts/year. Not too shabby.

Come a long way since that first recipe, Whole Grain Griddle Cake from Joy of Cooking.

Come a long way since that first recipe, Whole Grain Griddle Cakes from Joy of Cooking.

Of course, there’ve been ups and downs. I basically took 2011 off, which wasn’t hot. But Steve from Drinking and Writing Theater once called my blog “the best beer blog in Chicago.” He was talking to someone else, even! He was sober at the time! So that gave me some serious ups.

Steve and I at Great American Beer Fest. Neither of us is a selfie pro.

Steve and I at Great American Beer Fest. Neither of us is a selfie pro.

I love this online space, and I plan to inhabit it a long time.… Continue reading →

Giveaway: Beer Bloggers Conference Swag

My last post mentioned I have recently returned from San Diego, and alluded to the fact that there was a conference and some beer in my life while I was there.

Yup. I went to Beer Bloggers Conference in San Diego this year. It was my first time attending this conference, and I had a nice time. I also, as you can imagine, brought home a few things. However, I realized that more fun than bringing home things just for myself was bringing things home to give away. I gave some glassware to my friend Nicky, and decided to give the rest away to a couple of readers here.

Nerd Alert! The bottom-most measurement on this glass is 3.14…

So! For this giveaway, it’s very simple.… Continue reading →

Coffee Beer. French Toast. Quiche. Wins.

Spent grain might be magic, guys.

I know. I know. I’m SUPPOSED to be talking about homebrew. Since, you know, that was the basis of the giveaway. And, frankly, the homebrew was delicious. Our coffee amber was well-received (and I’m told it’s been entered in its first contest!), though the two bombers we shared were fascinatingly different. Both quite tasty, but one was more deeply akin to coffee than the other. We speculated that the coffee wasn’t properly mixed in at bottling time, but we’ll never know for sure.

On top of that, we tried a couple of bottles of homebrew from my friends Jason and Matt. Jason’s “Nightmare Stout” was delicious and deep. Matt’s “Damn Fine Cup of Coffee” was exceptional. It hit all the right notes of coffee and stout, without being huge and heavy.… Continue reading →

Book Giveaway: Kindred by Octavia Butler

I love books. Stories, really, but particularly in written form. I don’t know why I have such a preference for reading over watching or hearing, but I do. (My hierarchy is probably reading > hearing > watching, when it comes to fiction.)

Every now and again, a particular story comes along that really moves me. And Octavia Butler’s Kindred is one of them.

One of the best books I’ve read in a long time.

This is an old book. Thirty-five years old. It appears it’s been chosen as a school text for many of the years it’s been around. Still, I’d never read it or heard of Butler until this year. And based on what I heard of her, I bought every work of hers I could get my hands on at Powell’s in May.… Continue reading →

Preparing to Host Brunch

Well, it’s almost time for people to show up for my second, ever, homebrew and home-cooking event.

Ha. “Event” makes it sound so much bigger than it is. What I’ve done is invite a handful of people over for brunch. But it feels like an “event” because at least one person is someone I’ve never met before. Which means a lot more cleaning than if it were just Rob or Nicky or Jason showing up.

Luckily, the beverage plan is easy. I’ll ask Bill to pick up some coffee beans and make some coffee for folks who are arriving. Then, I have the coffee beer I made with Nancy, a coffee beer Jason (Beer Husband) made, and a coffee beer Matt made. This isn’t actually a TON of beer for six people, as Jason & Matt’s beers are in 12 oz bottles.… Continue reading →