Monday, January 31, 2022

Saturday, January 29, 2022

Brewing a Brewsky

One of my favorite things about Derek and Gabby is that they appreciate a good beer. Today they invited us over to their place in Brier, Washington to brew one!

He had a pretty cool Jerry-rigged set up.

I brought over a bottle of maybe the most famous fancy beer in St. Louis to share: Perennial's Abraxas.

Friday, January 28, 2022

Seattle Flavors of the Orient

Who knows what sort of wonders one will find across the Evergreen Point Floating Bridge.

I love the view from this crossing. There's water on either side and mountains ahead.

Today we used a Lunar New Year celebration as an excuse to visit Lucky Envelope Brewing.

These guys seem to be down with exploring crazy flavors, which I am all about.

They also had friggin' fish jerky. Yes please. I tried as many excitingly weird beers that they would offer.

Water Tiger Cold IPA (6.7% ABV): collab with Highland Brewing. Happy Year of the Water Tiger from Highland Brewing and Lucky Envelope Brewing! This Cold IPA brewed with Seattle's Marketspice Berry Bush tea marks the third annual Seattle-Asheville zodiac collaboration. Late and dry hop additions of juicy El Dorado hops accentuate the honeybush tea with raspberry, strawberry, and lemongrass.

Peanut Butter Cream Stout (6.0% ABV): Real peanut butter infused with cocoa, coffee, and light roast flavors of our cream stout. Lactose and flaked oats add a smooth creaminess to balance out bold dark malts creating a perfect beer to enjoy year-round.

Hawaiian Honey Lager (5.6% ABV): collab with Halcyon Brewing. This Lunar New Year lager blends orange blossom honey from Hawaii's Wao Kele Honey and a hint of orange zest into our American-style lager to create a deliciously crispy, crushable beer with notes of floral honey sweetness, juicy citrus, and toasted corn cereal.

Mijiaya Historic Chinese Beer (5.6% ABV): Named after the 5,000 year old Mijiaya archaeological site in Shaanxi, Northern China. We brewed this special Lunar New Year release based on the starch and grains found in various brewing vessels excavated from the dig site. Brewed with barley, Job's tears, millet, Chinese squash, lily flowers, and yam, the resulting beer is flowery, light, and clean.

The Job's tears reference from this one jumped out at me because I recently heard of this.. seed for the first time when I obtained a bracelet for Lydia made out of them in Guyana. I think that the native dancers I saw were wearing a lot of them as well.

2022 Double Happiness: Five-Spice Vanilla Imperial Stout (12% ABV): Our 2022 Double Happiness blends double barrel-aged Imperial Stout from Copperworks Whiskey and Westland Whiskey barrels with real vanilla bean and five-spice powder. Traditional Chinese five-spice represents the five elements and brings a soul-warming spiciness to complement our Imperial Stout's deep notes of caramel, cocoa powder, and boozy toasted oak.

Seattle's International District is pretty sketchy at night, which is too bad because the place is teeming with awesome restaurants. I read good things about Szechuan Noodle Bowl.

These people were serious about checking your vaccination papers before allowing you to dine in. They had a friggin' door barricade that brought to mind a zombie apocalypse. 

For a started I ordered a green onion pancake. This was much better than the time I picked a bunch of wild green onions and then tried to cook with them.

I think this was Szechuan Beef Noodle with soup, and we got an order of their dumplings as well. When she wasn't helping us, our server was sitting at another table cranking out hundreds of these babies by hand.

We like boba yes we do.

Lydia ordered some wild off-menu secret drink named Lydia with a lot of weird stuff in it.

I emailed my mom asking why she sometimes calls me Lumpy and she replied with a cryptic answer:

"John (Lumpy),

In the movie Scrooged Bill Murray got hit in the head by a door by Karen Allen & she started calling him Lumpy. Not sure if that has anything to do w/you. 

Just a nickname for you."

Thursday, January 27, 2022

Burgers and Beers

Dick's is a local burger chain that has an old timey walk up window and a very simple menu. There's one in Bellevue that is our go-to.

Had a beer at the grungy Blue Moon Tavern

Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Sushi Cool Kids

Seattle's Asian food scene is pretty baller so I feel compelled to cross Lake Washington from time to time in order to participate.

Tonight we went to a sort of hip sushi place called Momiji. I think I prefer a more classic approach but the food was good.

The Amazon Spheres headquarters.

Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Apparently the trick to getting better at skiing is to do it incessantly even when you do not wish to do so.

Lydia has a cool ski jacket but amusingly like 20 people on the slopes today had the same or similar.

Sunday, January 23, 2022

Skiing for a Crowd

We scaled the Cascade Mountains on a sunny Sunday to utilize our season ski pass at the Summit at Snoqualmie.

We learned a hard lesson about coming to this place on weekends, as opposed to nights after work. The line for the ski lift was crazy long.

I'm making slow progress. One thing that is kind of a bummer is that you need to constantly turn in order to slow yourself down. Fine. But if you suck at turning and do it too slowly, you'll end up going too fast to turn at all and lose control. Quite a predicament.

The sight of 4 year old girls flying past me is especially emasculating. They don't weigh anything so it probably doesn't even hurt when they fall. Screw them and screw gravity.

As a reward to myself for surviving yet another mountainy murder attempt from Lydia, I tasted of some the beers I brought home from our visit to Tacoma's Sig Brewing Co.

Tacoma: the Aroma of Fun

Before we moved to Washington we looked into living in Tacoma as a way to cut living expenses so it's amusing to think about what our life might be like now if we had. I'm extremely happy we went with Kirkland. 

One of the funnier reasons that I'm glad I don't live in Tacoma is the famous Tacoma Aroma, a sulfury stink that people blame on the Simpson Tacoma Kraft pulp and paper mill. Wiki: "During a concert stop at the Tacoma Dome in the mid-1980s, Bruce Springsteen reported the odor was so overwhelming that he was forced to leave town early."

Today our main objective was to visit the Washington State History Museum, which lives in a building adjacent to the 1911 Union Station building.

Puget Sound was named after Captain Vancouver's lieutenant.

There was a good section about the various industries that helped the area grow. Lumber was a big one, and I think that's a reason the airplane industry succeeded here as well, since planes were initially made of wood.

Dale Chihuly was born in Tacoma and they seem pretty excited about that fact. That conical thing is the Museum of Glass, and we crossed the Chihuly Bridge of Glass to get over there.

There's a courthouse operating out of Union Station now.

We did a little brewery crawl after that, starting at E9 Brewing Co.

7 Seas Brewing was one of my favorites, as they had a lot of cool historical objects to look at and the beer featured some fun flavors.

Sig Brewing Company

They had a fun little wood fired oven happening back there.

I watched some video about the making of Myst and got fascinated with the 1993 game all over again. I don't think I ever beat it back in the day so I roped Seago into playing it with me.

Things got out of hand and we stayed up super late playing it.