Friday, April 15, 2016
Lynn and I and our friends (who are serious beer aficionados) ventured into the crisp spring air to visit Long Ireland Brewery in Riverhead. Lynn and I had a brush with the Long Ireland guys about 4-5 years ago when they had been involved with the Long Island Roller Derby troupe the Long Island Roller Rebels and their brews had made a favorable impression on us then.
Oddly enough, we had initially thought to go to Montauk's Brewery (the only LI brewery of significance that our friends had not visited). We got stuck in not one, but two mammoth, mysterious traffic jams which is one reason we cut our losses and decided to check out Long Ireland which our friends had visited on more than one occasion and was highly recommended by them.
Upon entering, we were greeted by a jovial giant of a guy named Dan who is one of the owners and who we had remembered from the Roller Derby. The atmosphere was folksy and old fashioned in the best kind of way. A pretzel warmer anchored one end of the bar and the walls were filled with vintage brewery ephemera.
Lynn and I had a generous flight for only $8.00. All of our samples were drinkable and had their merits but the two standouts for us was the Breakfast Stout Nitro and for me was the Gose brew which was brewed with sea salt and had a pleasant smoky briny quality which would be great paired with seafood or shell fish (and would be a great tonic on a hot summer day).
Speaking again of the atmosphere it was really refreshing to be in a brewery that didn't have one (or usually more) giant screen televisions with the "game on." The feeling of community was strong and the brews and company were great making for a particularly satisfying, uniquely Long Island experience.
Tuesday, April 5, 2016
In this fast paced culture Breakfast has passed from the most essential meal of the day to a near luxury if not a decadent indulgence. America's Best Breakfasts: Favorite Local Recipes From Coast to Coast is a celebration of the exotica that is the American Breakfast. Authors Lee Brian Schrager and Adeena Sussman are our tour guides from Coast to Coast where they introduce to the reader to the exotic variety of rustic diners, hot spots, and off the beaten path establishments with cult followings.
The book also provides recipes from these establishments some of which have a nostalgic familiarity (Chicken Fried Steak from Petrow's in Omaha); some of which are familiar but with a twist (Cheesy Biscuits and Vegetarian Gravy from Over Easy again from Omaha); some of which are pure creativity (San Francisco's Craftsman and Wolves has an uber decadent meat and cheese muffins stuffed with a soft boiled egg called "The Rebel Within").
For Lynn and I, breakfast is probably the least likely place where we would experiment or try to get creative. This volume promises to change this: Looking forward to trying Kimchi Pancakes from Sunshine Tavern in Portland as well as the Filipino Steak with Garlic Friend Rice from Uncle Mike's Place in Chicago.
For more on this book see www.americasbestbreakfast.com
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Links of note from M & L...
- I (Mark) have written for The Christian Science Monitor, Clear Magazine, Picture Magazine, Film Score Monthly, Dan's Papers, Rue Morgue, In Flight USA and a lot more publications that I can't remember.... My wife Lynn was a model with the Ford Agency and her photography has been featured in most of the publications I have written for...