Joe's Rants and Raves

  • Oct 23 - 04:17 PM: It's been a while. : Joe McBane

    So while I have been making a bunch of changes to the website I realized that I have been slacking in my blogging commitment. Let me try and catch you up on what has been going on down here.

    As I was saying I have been working hard on the website. Look for a reorganization of the bottle beer list. Instead of listing by country everything will be listed by style. Hopefully it will provide a slightly better clue to what people are getting in to. If you ever have to do something like this you will find out the tricky task involved with style breakdowns. There are a variety of ways to skin the cat. One way is the minimalistic approach of light, amber and dark. The other end of the scale is something akin to the beer advocate style listing. I favor somewhere in the middle. I look forward to some debates on how other people might have done it differently. I stand firmly behind my style plan - certainly for now.

    Last week involved a trip out to the New York Culinary and Wine Institute in Canandaigua. Garrett Oliver from Brooklyn Brewery was there to make a presentation on beer and food pairings. It turned out to be an inspiring afternoon. As well as being a very engaging speaker, Mr Oliver has the ability to inspire and reaffirm what it is that we love about well crafted beers and properly prepared foods made from good quality ingredients. While at times we can all be lazy and throw back some fast food it is important to take the time on a regular basis to prepare a meal and then sit down without the TV on and enjoy it with friends and family. As a society we spend more time in front of the television and or computer than we ever have in history. We certainly have the time for some good old slow cooking. Like beer, food comes in a variety of qualities. Many of us will only drink craft beers now and I believe that is a good thing. Our palates have developed. We should sometimes ask ourselves the same of certain items in the grocery store. Take for example the cheese that proudly advertises that it is made from 70% milk. What is the other 30%? Cheese is 100% milk. It is not a clever chemical concoction with little flavor but perfect melting qualities. There are many examples like this. These are all modern creations that came about after the second world war. Progress? I think not. I think it is time to regress a little and get back to the way things were done in the kitchen back when our grandparents were young. On that note happy cooking and always enjoy a good beer to help you wash it down. Cheers.

    Following on from the aforementioned trip we hosted a Brooklyn night down at the pub last night. It turned out to be big success. Certain foods were prepared to compliment certain beers and they all seemed to very well received. The big hit of the evening was a cask of bitter that was set on the bar and paired with scotch eggs. The cask was gone in a couple of hours.

    We still have a few tickets left for our pig roast birthday bash so if you are interested come on down. Hot roasted pig with cold delicious beer....mmmn.

    On a sad note, the lengendary bartender Todd has unfortunately left us. You can still find him at 12 Corners Starbucks. We wish all the best of luck and will miss him loads.
    *Todd if you are reading this you can still come back mate. It's never too late!

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  • Sep 17 - 06:05 PM: New Art : Joe McBane

    Unfortunately we have had to say goodbye to the freaky hybrid creatures in the bar area. They generated a curious reaction from many people but were definately a favorite of mine.

    We have had some interesting stuff up since we opened and look forward to continuing the trend. Our latest featured artist is Kate Blomquist. She uses a variety of medias to create some wonderfully colorful yet moody pieces. You can check out the art on this site or of course check it out in person down at the pub.

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  • Sep 08 - 10:19 AM: Hog Heaven - It's ON!!! : Joe McBane

    All those who have bought Hog Heaven tickets will be pleased to hear about the trial pig roast run that I conducted at my house over the weekend. After 6 hours and about 60 pounds of charcoal I produced what can only be described as a perfect porker. Juicy, golden, crispy and delicious.

    A few lessons were learnt. I was a little shocked by the incredible amount of heat that is kicked out by this thing. I am glad that I decided to move the box away from my house just before lighting! A drip catcher will also be useful as clean up was a project to say the least.

    All said and done this is going to be a hell of an event. See you there......

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