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In the spring of 1997 I had a seafood dish at Chi Chi’s in Willow Grove.  In January of 2006 I had a sashimi dish at Morimoto.  Between those 2 events, I did not eat any meat: fish or otherwise.  And other than a lost bet last year, I haven’t eaten any red meat or chicken since some time in early 1997.  That’s nearly 12 years of being a vegetarian*.

That all changed last night.

I had made it a new years “resolution” of sorts that I was going to start eating meat again, and last night I made my move.  My intro meat-meal was at Marrakesh with Lois and her sister, Lisa,  and Lisa’s husband Adly.  Being a Palestinian and world traveler of sorts, Adly’s favorite meat is lamb.  And I really wanted to try it.  So, as part of a 6 course meal last night, I had some whole roasted chicken with lemon and olives, and honey-almond lamb.

I’m a bit torn about this change.  Its hard not to be after 10+ years of being a vegetarian.  My ethics are still the same.  I still think animals should be treated with respect.  I still think factory farms and other such corporate treatment of animals is bad.  And I still don’t think that its wrong for humans to eat meat.  I’m just switching from abstaining for conscious’ sake to consuming for enjoyment’s sake.

So, who wants to cook up some bar-b-q this summer?

*ok, 9 years of being a vegetarian, then 3 years of being a pescetarian.

Philly Beer Week has come and gone.  I must say, though I missed alot, I was fortunate to get to some really great events this year.  I already wrote about the long bike ride below, so I won’t repeat that.  But here is a quick summary.

Memphis Taproom – Their No-Repeat beer week was outstanding!  I stopped in three times, but I always felt like I was missing something great every day that I wasn’t there!  The highlight for me was the Allagash Interlude, what a complex beer!  But the Fuller on cask was great, Obamagang, La Merle Saison, Port Midnight sessions, the list goes on!

Triumph – I found myself here a bunch of times too.  First for a beer and cheese tasting.  While not sublime, I enjoyed it quite a bit.  The Klash of the Kaisers was awesome too, with a cheap 9 beer flight of some amazing pilsners.  I voted Sly Fox’s Saint Charles Bridge as my favorite.

The Brewery Bike Ride – I posted a recap of the ride over at Beer of the Bike.  Over 150 people came out for this event!

Zythos – This was by far my favorite event of the week.  It was tolerably crowded, had a really nice food spread, and had some amazing beers.  I felt like within the first hour I got my ticket’s worth.  Sure I would have liked more visible signage for the tables, and some drinking water would have been nice, but overall this event ruled.  A full post about the beers I tried might be warranted, but for a taste: Scires, Super Baladin, Hanssens’ kriek, gueze, and cassis, Taras Boulba, De Ranke XX Bitter, ‘t Smisje Calva Reserva and Grand Reserva, Urthel Samaranth, and 12% Importers had some spectacular bottles that I need to track down the names of.

In summary: I can’t wait for next year!

On Saturday I embarked on “Le Philly Tour de Brew,” as its been dubbed, for my inaugural event of Philly Beer Week.  Jeff Appeltans put together a great route and a great ride.

There was 25 of us, starting and ending the day at Yards Brewery, with 3 stops in between .  First we took a quite ride past some Chestnut Hill mansions to get to the General Lafayette Inn.  We had a  quick pint and got right back on the road for a hilly suburban ride to Iron Hill in North Wales.  But this point I really needed the lunch and longer break.  They were expecting us, and thankfully had a table waiting.  A flight of their seasonal beers was a refreshing accompaniment to a filling and greasy fish and chips lunch.

We set out again after lunch, back towards the city.  Not far into the ride, the beer made its way to my bladder, making this leg of the ride perhaps the most uncomfortable.  I eventually had to pull over and relieve myself before getting to Manayunk Brewing Co.  The beer at Manayunk was just barely drinkable, but the riverside deck was wonderful.  From there, the group split up, as we all tried to drag our tired legs back across the city to Yards for some celebratory samples.

The weather was wonderful, the first real spring-like day, with highs in the 60’s (maybe even 70s?) and just enough cloud cover to keep the sun from beating us up.  And as my first real big ride of the year, I couldn’t have asked for a better time!

I’d love to introduce a new feature here at BeerbyBike.com:  The Love List

I love lots of things.  So many things in fact, that I can’t keep track sometimes.  Besides the first 5, which should be obvious and indisputable, I’m going to start populating this list with various foods, drinks, places, concepts, and words.

And you know what, I love Cheese.  I’ll start with a fairly obvious choice, I’ll put it up there at number 8.

Isn’t cheese great?  I mean, even American cheese is profound on an egg and cheese sandwich.  But sheep’s milk cheese.  Oooh.  Spanish chesse.  Mmmm.  Stinky cheese.  Drool.  I could live on cheese.  I practically do already.

And pairing cheese with beer?  Someone stop me…

Lots of sites and people have been posting their picks for Beer Week.  I’m very excited that many of these have picked my humble Brewery Bike Ride as a top pick.  Its going to be a packed out ride, but I’m excited nonetheless!  The most recent such posting was at none other than Draft Magazine, wow!

Thanks to Foobooz for reminding me that I wanted to round up a list of my anticipated Beer Week events.  I’ve spent my time on the site, and on the Brew Lounge’s very convenient spreadsheet, and Jonny and I met and schemed.  I think I’ve come up with a reasonable list of my “must do” events.

Its a simple list really.  I can’t afford to do it all, financially as well as time and liver health.  But there are a handful that look really awesome.

  • The bike rides.  Duh!  The “Le Philly Tour de Brew” on the 7th and the Beer of the Bike Brewery Bike ride on the 14th.  They will fill up both of my Saturdays.  I’ll be missing some other great events, but that’s how it goes.
  • Vintage Beer Brunch at the Memphis Taproom, Sunday the 8th.  This will be a recovery meal from the 60 mile ride the day before.
  • Tuesday night out, March 10th.  There is a couple things going on Tues night that I hope to get out to.  Sadly, I’ll be missing the Randy Mosher course at Dock St, which sounds amazing.  But I do hope to do a little pub-biking trip from the Avery Happy Hour at the Devils Den at 4pm, to Doobies at 5pm for a Voodoo meet the brewer, then end up at Triumph for a tutored cheese and beer paring (if there are tickets left, emails sent! score!).
  • Thursday night Klash of the Kaisers at Triumph.  I’m not a pilsner fanatic, but my good friend David is.  We’ll be there.
  • Zythos America.  I don’t hear much about this event, but looking at the beer list, its quickly becoming my most anticipated event.  $45 for 3 hours of possibly the best beer available in the US.  Who wants in?

Twitter

  • Beer by Bike ride is happening this Sat! Meet at 2nd and Poplar at 10:45 for a ride out to the Hop Angel Brauhaus for their holiday party 6 years ago
  • Hey, remember how we used to ride bikes and drink beer? Want to do it again? How about Dec 18th for a little holiday ride? 6 years ago
  • The Tweed Ride is this Sat!!: http://on.fb.me/bIY8u0 6 years ago
  • Any Philly beerbybike'rs want to meet up with Evan from @beercycling tonight at Monk's? 6 years ago
  • We are planning our official BeerbyBike Homebrew camping extravaganza for next weekend. If you want in, please let me know ASAP 7 years ago