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Beer Geeks to Converge @ BeerConn in December!

5 Nov

In a few weeks on December 13, we have a good hunch where you’ll be: at the inaugural BeerConn at the Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport. The brouhaha is so brew-centric that there are actually two sessions: Session 1 goes from 12:30-4 and Session 2 goes from 5:30-9!  Tix are just $35 per person (tax and fees extra), $45 the day of (if there are any left), and just $10 for those saintly designated drivers. You should be able to buy these tickets today, so keep checking their site!

And, as for the drinkable deets, here we go:

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Harbor Brew Fest 2014 Tickets Giveaway

2 Sep

There were so many entries for the contest, but the random winner is Amy Booth who really wants to try Ginja Ninja and the Cannoli beer.  Hey, we’re there with ya…love the Ninja, desperately want to try the Cannoli beer! 

Dude, it’s almost September 20…and you know what that means:  Harbor Brew Fest at The Ball Park at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport! We’ve got our tix, and hopefully you do too, but just in case you don’t, we’ve got a ticket giveaway contest just for you!  So, to win TWO General Admission tickets to Harbor Brew Fest 2014, all you need to do is check out the list of breweries below and tell us one beer from a brewery that you can’t wait to try. Comment on this post to enter or comment on our Facebook post too.  We will pick one random lucky winner at 5 pm (when the contest ends) on Friday, 9/5/14, and will announce the winner.

In case you need a reminder or this is your first time hearing about HBF from us, here’s a quick review:

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Harbor Brew Fest 2014 Tickets on Sale Saturday, 6/21

20 Jun
Picture yourself here...what, you're dunk already?

Picture yourself here…what, you’re dunk already?

That’s right, tickets to one of our absolute favorite beer fests in the tri-state, Harbor Brew Fest at The Ball Park @ Harbor Yard in Bridgeport, go on sale June 21 starting at 9 am.  Tix are $40 for GA ($50 at the door if any tix are left) and $60 for the Brewer’s Special, which gets you in an hour early and gives you access to a special tented area for exclusive and rare tastings.  You can also get your tix at Harry’s (they help to make this festival so freaking awesome!) in Fairfield.  

9/20:  mark it down!

9/20: mark it down!

If you went last year and thought they had an amazing selection of craft and local beer, then prepare to be blown away. Seriously, brace yourselves. That’s cuz this year on 9/20 from 12-5 (1-5 for GA), there will be over 100 breweries on hand!  And, whereas there was one giant tent filled to the brim with CT breweries down on the field, prepare for more on that green green grass!

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CT Food News, Vol. 9: Hot Dogs, Cocktails, Free Oysters, Trux, Cooking Classes, Festivals, and More…

18 Jun

Well, what can we say but there’s a whole helluva lot going on in and around Fairfield County over the next two weeks.  So, in addition to our regular posts, we’ve gathered up some major highlights of things going on such as awesome events, special meals, beer news, beer dinners, cooking classes, farmers’ markets, festivals, ways to give back, and we give some props to a city in CT that just got some major press.  Check out more events here, too.

Cool (and Chow) Down

6/18-6/20:  Chef Storch of Match continues his themed lunches, this time with “Super Duper” Match.  And, if you’re wondering…yes, he’s featuring some of the greatest dishes from Super Duper Weenie:  the best hot dog joint in the world.  Check out Match’s FB page for the menu.

6/19:  The Chelsea in Fairfield is takin’ things back to ‘Nawlins with food and drink specials, mon cherie.  This is all in celebration of Marc Broussard hitting up Fairfield Theatre Company that day.

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Where to Eat + Drink with the Stereotypical Dad on Father’s Day

10 Jun

Here in ‘Merica we celebrate Father’s Day by honoring the guy who put us into this world. The man who sticks his hand in his pants when he’s watching sports on TV. The remote control hog. The beer guzzler. The guy that fixes all the broken stuff in the house. The golfer, the fisherman, the any other Hallmark stereotype you can imagine guy.  Yep, it’s the good ‘ole American dad’s day, so to honor him this Sunday, June 15, we’ve put together a list of places you can take your stereotypical dad to indulge in the things he loves most…

If BBQ is your super dad’s kryptonite, try:

1) Dinosaur Bar-b-que, for the dad that wants to sit back and get fat.  So your dad just wants to sit on the couch and chew the (pork) fat all day? Hey, we’re not judging…who wouldn’t?  You go right ahead and enable him by ordering up some BBQ’ed goodness to take home.  Some particularly gluttonous options include:

Ribs, brisket, pulled pork, rice and beans, coleslaw, corn bread...wow.

Ribs, brisket, pulled pork, rice and beans, coleslaw, corn bread…wow.

King of the Grill:  special cut ribs, bone-in chicken quarters (1/2 white, 1/2 dark), 2 sides, cornbread ($99.95 for 6, $189.95 for 12, or $279.95 for 18).

Father Knows Best:  choice of 2 bbq meats, 3 sides, cornbread ($109.95 for 6, $199.95 for 12, $299.95 for 18).

Pitmaster Pro:  choice of 3 bbq meats, 3 sides, cornbread ($129.95 for 6, $249.95 for 12, or $375.95 for 18).

Make sure to place your order 48 hours in advance by calling (203) 517-3273 or e-mailing stamcatering@dinobbq.com.  Any package also gets your dad the Dinosaur Bar-b-que Cookbook for the days when he doesn’t feel so lazy.

2) Saugatuck Craft Butchery, for the dad that thinks he can do it better himself.  A great grillmaster like your dad knows that amazing BBQ starts with the meat, that’s why you’ll need to take daddy dearest to Westport.  He’ll have a killer selection of ribs, chops, special cuts, and custom ground sausage.  Make his life super easy by calling them up at (203) 226-6328, placing an order, then picking it up for him so he’s ready to grill all day long.


If your dad’s eyes light up at the sight of good beer , try: 

1) Two Roads tour and tasting if you’re staying closer to home.  Your dad’s had Two Roads‘ beer from the store and at the bar, but WHAT? He’s never been to Stratford to see where the magic happens?  Well, get him down there on Father’s Day and prove your love.  Dad’ll have plenty of time because they are open from 12-7, with tours at 1 and 3.  Added bonus:  The Local Meatball food truck will be on hand… so he can stuff his belly too.  Note that no minors are allowed in the tasting room or beer garden.

Dads love bocce!

Dads love bocce!

2) Captain Lawrence Brewery, if you’re up for a quick field trip.  Your dad’s already a Connecticut beer pro? Well, blow his mind with something new by taking him on down to Captain Lawrence Brewery in Elmsford, NY.  There’s plenty of (really good) beer to sip on, nice bites of food to pick from (plus Village Dog will be there), and they’ve got two official sized bocce ball courts.  That’s a full day of Father’s Day entertainment right there! Hours are 12-5 with tours at 2 and 4.  And, just because they love dads so much, they’ll have 11 test batches that your dad can vote on that will stay in production at the brewery.  


If your dad likes to be referred to as The Captain, try:

1)  Dolce Cubano, for a manly dock n’ dine day.  Dad can dock his boat up right outside Dolce Cubano and either call them up for dine-in service right on your boat, or just head up to the restaurant to enjoy some tasty cocktails and creative spins on Italian and Latino dishes. Be sure to get the butternut squash and lobster gnocchi. It will rock your dad’s world!

Dad will be your greatest fan if you take him to Dolce...

Dad will be your greatest fan if you take him to Dolce…

2)  Captain’s Cove for fun for the whole family.  If Dad wants to make it a fun-filled family day, let him boat out to Bridgeport and dock at Captain’s Cove.  There he’ll have his bounty of fresh or fried fish, plus plenty of other options like shopping, music, and handmade boat races for the family.


If your dad can quote every line from Caddyshack, try:

Sterling Farms, for the dad that (thinks he) can golf.  You can play through the course with dad*, or if dad get’s a little too serious for your emotional health, you can be his caddy for the day.  Either way it’s a win-win because when you’re done, you can both enjoy a full lobster dinner at Zody’s, which just opened right by the driving range.

Mini golf at Calf Pasture Beach, for the dad with not enough patience (or skill) to play real golf. Fun for the whole family*, and afterwards you can all hit up Ripka’s Beach Cafe for some kabobs, lobster, or even some raw bar options. Eat there or take it down to the beach and give dad the relaxation he deserves.

*Let dad win or risk revoking your rights to the will.


If your dad prefers the wind in his hair on the open road, try:

The Darien Collector’s Car Show, to give dad something to drool over.  From 11-2 pm at Tilley Pond Park on West Avenue in Darien, you can check out the 9th annual car show that motor enthusiasts look forward to every year.  Admission is just $5 per person, kids 6 and under are free and a portion of ticket sales goes to At Home in Darien. When you’ve checked out all the cars, head over to Estia’s for a hearty, farm fresh brunch, Bodega for the best tacos around, or Meatball & Co for lotsa juciy meatballs.

Rawwr!  Conntuckey Lightning from Two Roads, brewed with corn grits and aged in bourbon barrels.

Let dad have a kickass kinda day!

Dew Drop Inn, for the badass motorcycle ridin’ dad.  If your dad has a bike (and a bonus beard and tattoo), take a trip with him to Dew Drop Inn in Derby.  He can talk shop with tons of other bikers, admire what they’re riding, and/or just drink fantastic craft beers and chow down on some great comfort food, like their steaks, burger, and over 41 crazy chicken wings, like the PB&J or the Parm Butter Bacon Garlic.


If the thrill of competition gets your dad’s blood pumping, try:

Bridgeport Bluefish, for a fun-filled family day.  The game against the Lancaster Barnstormers (“Amish Paradise” theme song?) begins at 1:05…and it’s Jersey Off Our Back Day.  That means that you can bid on actual jerseys worn by players during the game.  Tix are just $11 or $12, so get ’em while the gettings good!  While you’re there, let dad chow down on some peanuts, and Cracker Jacks…and hot dogs…and burgers…and beer.  And, if you’re a savvy kinda family, use Groupon to get 2 tix for $14.50 or 4 for $28.  Also, on 6/16 the legendary Pete Rose will be managing the Bluefish, so that’s another game you won’t want Daddy-o to miss.

This could be YOUR dad! Photo from Bpt Bluefish site.

Chelsea Piers in Stamford, for the dad that likes to sweat.  An active dad’s paradise, Cheslea Piers has a ton of sweat-inducing activity options. For (non-member) drop-in programs, there are batting cages, ice skating, basketball, soccer, volleyball, and more.  When you’re done letting dad get his shots in, check out Just Sprouted Cafe for some lighter drinks and small bites to recharge.

 

 

 

Fairfield County Food News, Vol. 7: Wieners, Bees, Horses, Bourbon, and Summer Fun

5 Jun

83 degree days?  We’ve made it, brahh!  So, you best believe that we’re going to share with you some great events for you to enjoy some time outside…even some all summer long.  As always, these are new listings that we haven’t covered on our blog yet…no need to be repetitive, huh?  The full list of events can be found here if you’re interested.

June 6

Oh beehive!  That’s cuz one of the world’s largest observation beehives is coming to Stew Leonard’s in Norwalk, starting at 11 am.  The hive will hold more than 50,000 honeybees and measures 4X5 feet.  Seems like a Common Core question in the making, huh?  The honey will eventually be collected (over 100 lbs. worth) and will then be sold right at Stew Leonard’s.  At the height of the season, there will be 75,000 bees inside!

KC and Anne will be playing the Station Eats Stamford outdoor beer garden starting at 6:30.  Get some burgers, get some brews, and just chill.

June 7

Wienerpalooza 2014 at Bridge St. Wienery has finally arrived!  Come by at 12:30 for the hot dog eat contest and see who the Biggest Wiener Winner is!  In addition to their great burgers and dogs, they’ll also have popcorn, cotton candy, music, t-shirt giveaways, and plenty of games to play.  Happy two years in business, guys!

Beardsley Zoo is hosting their annual Wild Wine, Beer and Food Safari 2014 fundraiser from 6-9 pm right at the zoo.  Tickets are $60 each ($65 at the gate) or if you buy 4 or more, they’ll cost only $55 each.  There’s also an option for VIP tix that are $100 each and get you “Behind the Scenes” access from 4:30-5:30.  In addition to over 100 different wines and 60 different brews, there will be live music, a silent auction, a raffle, and lots of food.  Some of the participating vendors include Black Rock Cafe, Carl Anthony’s Trattoria, Joey C’s Roadhouse BBQ, Liquid Lunch, Johnny Utah’s, Smoke & Bones BBQ, DiGrazia Vineyards, Onyx Moonshine, Berkshire Brewing Co., Captain Lawrence, and more.  Full list and ticket info here.  Also, if you buy any wine or beer at the event, 10% of the sales will go right to Beardsley.

Join Dew Drop Inn in their fight to raise money for Relay for Life, held at 2 pm at 118 Canal Street in Shelton.  As of today, they have raised the most money:  an incredible $15,130 that will be donated to the American Cancer Society.  When you’re done, do drop in to the Dew Drop Inn for some great burgers, wings, and killer craft beer.

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Black Rock Day 2014: Bed Races, 5K, a Parade, and Food…Lots of Food

4 Jun
Back...and better than ever!

Back…and better than ever!

On Monday we told you about the opening day of the Black Rock Farmers’ Market, so we couldn’t just skip talking about the ever-popular Black Rock Day…now could we? Pssh, of course not!  When we lived in Black Rock, this was THE event of the year:  the one that we looked forward to all year long.  One year we even got to be judges to see who put on the best themed party along the parade route.  Well, let’s just say we drank quite a few drinks and spent the rest of the day as incapacitated lumps on our couches.

Well, get ready because Black Rock Day is back this year and is going down this Sunday, June 8!  There are lots of different things going on, so get ready:

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Black Rock Farmers’ Market Sprouts up on Saturdays in CT

2 Jun
The Black Rock Farmers' Market opens this Saturday, 6/7

The Black Rock Farmers’ Market opens this Saturday, 6/7

Access to good, fresh, and healthy food shouldn’t be a privilege, affordable and available to only a select few.  Everyone, no matter where they live, should be able to get produce, meats, and products from local farms and producers.  Not only are these products fresher and fuller of nutrients and vitamins, they are also the solution to our preservative-heavy and pre-frozen society.  Plus, something we love is that by supporting local farmers and producers at these markets, you are supporting local and helping families to make dreams come true…not just helping a CEO afford another McMansion.

So, we’re very excited for Black Rock (that awesome spot between Bridgeport and Fairfield that we called home) because starting this Saturday (and until 10/25), they’ll have their own farmers’ market.  Yup, just come by 481 Brewster Street (right next to St. Ann Church) from 9 to 1 pm on Saturdays and you’ll be able to check out these great farms and products:

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Harbor Brew Fest 2014 Exclusive Details: Food Trucks, Pricing, On Sale Date

16 May

September 20, 2014…that’s the official date of the Harbor Brew Fest at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport.  In terms of brewfests, this happens to be one of our favorites.  And, this year promises to be even better with even more beer options and 12 13 14 (count ’em, 12 13 14) food trucks!  You’ll want to save the date now—we’ll wait for you to put it on the calendar now—because this will be an awesome way to spend September 20, 2014.

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5 Essential Keys to Brewing a Great Craft Beer Festival

7 Apr
Collage of Beer Festivals

Beer festivals=brewvana

After we published our critical review of the 4b Festival (Bacon, BBQ, Beer, and Bourbon) in New Haven, we got a tweet from the CT Beer Trail.  They said, “Dan & Kristien, good opportunity to shift focus to the positive & discuss what makes a beer fest a great one.”  We thought about it and really took that to heart, so we decided we were up for that challenge, and now here we are on 4/7, National Beer Day!

So, may we present you with a guide to what makes beer fests great, along with examples at the end.  If you have any other ideas, examples, or even disagree, please comment below with your thoughts.

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