Biergarten: literally translating over to beer garden. Much cooler than kindergarten which is, literally, a garden of children?! Um, no thanks…we’ll take a garden of brews, ales, and stouts thank you very much. And, we’ve seen beer gardens sprouting up recently: the popular Beer Garden @ Harbor Point opened recently and The Landmark Biergarten at Station Eats is opening up any day now. But, Bobby Q’s Bodacious BBQ & Grill in Westport has been ahead of the curve.
Now that we finally have that warmer weather that we dream of during the colder months in Connecticut, we can look forward to BBQ season. For some, BBQ season never ends, though. The tailgate warriors, the backyard chefs who won’t allow a little annoying snow to ruin their plans of cooking up some burgers on the barbie. But, whether you’re a BBQ expert, a novice, or just a BBQ eater, you’ve probably never had a BBQ meal like the one that Chef Plum of Newtown, CT has planned out for Sunday, May 26 from 7 to 10. He’s repurposed Butcher’s Best in Newtown as a pop up restaurant in his dining series called Dinner Underground. Tickets are limited to just 30 people and cost $85.39 (that’s with the service fee) and you can buy them here. So, you know how we work…this is where we explain why you need to get yourself to this event:
People went crazy last year when Plan B Burger Bar opened in Stamford Town Center. What? A restaurant with great burgers, a killer beer selection, and an amazing variety of bourbon? Yes, yes, and yes. Well kiddos, ya’ll further out east in Fairfield County won’t have to drive out to Stamford anymore for your Plan B fix. Coming this fall, Fairfield will have its own Plan B Burger Bar at 1262 Boston Post Road, the old post office building. If that’s too far to wait, don’t worry. They opened the Stamford location ahead of schedule and maybe that will happen here?
We are opening in Fairfield, CT Fall of 2013!
But, you won’t have to wait that long to have a Plan B Burger in the fair city. Stay tuned to find out what we’re doing in Fairfield for National Burger Day on May 28th.
It’s a Friday night, mid 70s outside, and there are just a few little clouds in the sky. Could there have been a better day to hit up the brand new Beer Garden @ Harbor Point? No, probably not. Unfortunately, it seemed that everybody in Fairfield County agreed, but we still managed to find a killer parking spot just right outside of Walgreen’s. There’s also a huge lot nearby that they have devoted to Beer Garden parking, too, if you can’t find any street-side spots.
Before we even entered, we were amazed to see this building that was empty just a few months ago, turned into a massive party scene. Maddy’s food truck and Lobstercraft were outside, with about 50 devoted followers ready to get their grub on. That is one of the great things about this Beer Garden: although you can’t get food inside (yet), they’ll have food trucks there for you to get your nom on.
Two of our favorite spots to get brews and grub in Fairfield County have lots of fun ahead for American Craft Beer Week. ACBW kicks off today, 5/13, and goes until 5/19. The focus of the beer week has always been on smaller batch brews, a focus on fine details, and more of a hands-on approach to beer. Now, it’s no coincidence that Ginger Man in Norwalk and Coalhouse Pizza in Stamford live and breathe this philosophy year round, but you know they have to step up their game (is that possible?) to celebrate American Craft Beer Week. It’s kind of like the Super Bowl of the beer world.
Coalhouse Pizza is featuring a week of tap takeovers:
Monday, 5/13: Sebago
Wednesday, 5/15: Harpoon
How do you like your food? Slow with a heaping of healthy local goodness? That’s basically the mantra of Slow Food Shoreline, a chapter of the larger Slow Food USA organization. According to the SFS site:
“Slow Food Shoreline’s mission is to promote cooking and nutritional education, with a focus on using local ingredients, to improve the health of the region. Our focus is on teaching scratch cooking using whole ingredients, with an additional focus on fresh, local, and seasonal products. We believe that teaching core cooking skills and encouraging a love of food and cooking, is the best way for participants to sustain what they’ve learned and change eating habits long term, as well as become better informed consumers. Through cooking demonstrations, tastings, cooking classes, and other food education opportunities, we’ll provide the community with the confidence, knowledge, and motivation to build healthy and delicious food habits.”
We definitely are on board with this and think a focus on “slow” cooking from scratch and on local ingredients elevate not only the taste of the food, but also is pretty zen and meditative. If you can’t find yourself and your center by baking a batch of brownies or preparing a roast, you’re doing it wrong!
Gentlemen and gentlewomen, start your, er, horses. And they’re off…well, off to Derby Day at Plan B Burger Bar in Stamford from 3-7 on May 4. Yup yup! You’ll be able to watch the Kentucky Derby at Plan B and get to comment on all the cool horse names such as Charming Kitten, Itsmyluckyday, Fear the Kitten, Frac Daddy, and the number one contender Black Onyx.
But, does anyone really watch the races? Everybody knows what it’s really about:
Looking spiffy, wearing huge hats that strangely resemble ufos, dressing like a princess (or prince), and drinking lots of bourbon. And, you’ll be happy to know that at Plan B you’ll be rewarded for your crazy hat and your daper and dressiness with contests. There’s even going to be a raffle if you can’t find an ugly hat. But, perhaps one of the sweetest things is that Plan B is giving back to The American Cancer Society. You’ll be drinking bourbon anyway, so just make sure to order Four Roses straight, on the rocks, or in their mixed drinks such as their Four Roses Mint Julep.
Good beer is worth writing and talking about. And, do you know what else good beer is perfect for? Drinking, duh. So, it only makes sense that beer dinners are great because you get to drink the beer and you get to learn about the beer. Sometimes a rep from the brewery will be present and sometimes if you’re lucky you’ll get the owner or head brewer to present. But, in the case of the Brewmasters Dinner at Ginger Man SoNo on Monday, May 6 at 7 pm ($85 pp includes tax and tip), you’re getting much more than that.
That’s right beerologists, you’ll be getting a major treat. We’re talking about two brewers from Italy and a brewer from Denmark. The guests of honor, along with their breweries, are:
Southport Brewing Company
Last year we told you about something special that Southport Brewing Company does. They have a special “Help Line” that you can ask for. You’ll get to pick any of their house brews, but just for asking for the “Help Line” you’ll be donating .50 to a charity that they have chosen.
The two charities that they are currently collecting for (.25 per beer goes to each charity) goes until the end of June and are near and dear to us. The first charity is ALS TDI who is working hard to wipe out ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. According to their site, “Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that leads to paralysis, due to the death of motor neurons in the spinal cord and brain. There is no known cure for the disease…the average patient survives only 2-5 years following diagnosis.” The second charity is Camp Promise East who hosts a summer camp each year for people of all ages with muscular dystrophy. The collection of funds for both charities is going on now until the end of June, so if you’re having some SBC brews, remember to ask for the “Help Line.” You’ll be helping out big time.
And also Garden Catering of Old Greenwich is helping raise money again, too. They’ll be donating a portion of their sales to the same two charities on May 22 from 2 to 7 pm. They’ll be donating 10% of all in-store sales and will donate 20% of all gift card sales. You know what that means? Yup! Plenty of birthday, Christmas, Hanukkah, Halloween, Groundhogs Day, and any other holiday where you get presents for the people you love. Or, maybe you’ll just hoard them for yourself to make that next trip to Garden Catering a bit easier?
Prost! And, we’ll be saying Prost! quite a bit when, sometime in early May, Stamford gets its own hot new spot for the beer enthusiast: The Beer Garden @ Harbor Point. The Beer Garden is being created through a collaboration of Imian Hospitality and BLT. And, this is not going to be any kind of puny pub, either. It’s over 6,000 square feet, has seating for over 300 people, has two levels, has a private bar room, and has an outdoor terrace on the second floor with killer views of the Sound.
As for the beer, they’ll be serving up craft brews with 24 on draft. According to the press release, they’ll also be pouring hard to find ales from craft breweries. Some of brews you can expect are Dogfish Head, Captain Lawrence, Curious Traveler, Thomas Hooker, and Two Roads. We’re sure they’ll be pouring Half Full, too. But, it’s not just beer on draft, it’s also about larger bottles of craft brews to please the consummate beerologist. And, if you happen to be one of those people who doesn’t like beer or who just needs a break from some brews, you could check out some “American-centric” cocktails from master mixologist Jason Clark. Just remember: Beer before liquor, never been sicker…liquor before beer, you’re in the clear.