In the wake of shooting two thousand photos in two days (thanks a lot, Cleveland Air Show and North Coast Challenge), I aimed a little more modestly today and only shot a handful of things. Here we find a craft project in progress--Liz's conversion of a Fat Heads box into a hot pink Lego brick piñata for Claire's birthday party. A coat of primer probably would have been a good idea...
I stopped off at Lizardville on my way home from a haircut and errands for a bite to eat and a nice beer. I'm pleased to say that I enjoyed both, particularly the glass of Sierra Nevada's Southern Hemisphere Harvest, which features hops specially flown in from New Zealand to. It has a wonderful freshness and delicacy, and while the hop finish lingers for quite some time, it never feels like an aftertaste.
Clearly, I was too busy enjoying it to get a picture along the way.
Last Sunday, we got together with a group of friends to check out Lizardville, a new whiskey bar and beer store down the road from us. Or, as Chip called it, "Beervana"--there are over 500 beers available by the bottle that can either be sold and taken home or chilled and served in a few minutes. And there's a giant binder of all their whiskeys, which is both intimidating and inviting. On top of all of that, they feature some outstanding pub food to help balance it all out.
So... Yeah. I think I have a new favorite place.
This shot, of a shelf in one of their refrigerators, is only the tiniest sliver of their selection.
I've uploaded the photos from our trip to New York. After my day of hacking in the hotel (during which we had a great rain storm), I met up with Liz and two of her classmates after their exam for beer and munchies at Luna Park. It was humid as hell, but I had the best grilled cheese sandwich ever, and discovered that, for being somewhat mass-market, Stella Artois is an acceptable beer. Sadly, our delivery Chinese experience later than night was pretty poor (after waiting two and a half hours, they delivered it to the wrong location), and the Cavs just couldn't manage to get any traction against the spurs, so the late evening kind of fell apart.
The next day we went to Bliss for massages (nice) and then bopped up to the Fifth Avenue Apple Store, mostly so I could take pictures. We wandered a bit at FAO Schwartz, where we encountered some awesome LEGO sculptures. After lunch at BLT Steak (too expensive, but delicious), I got all spontaneous and we took a carriage ride through part of Central Park. A pre-dinner visit to Vino (an awesome Italian wine shop) resulted in a fun conversation and a few more bottles to add to the cellar. Unfortunately, our meal at I Trulli was fairly uneven: while all of Liz's dishes were pretty decent, two of mine (a duck prosciutto appetizer and Piedmontese hanger steak) were serious misfires, and I found myself reluctantly slipping into the feeling of being an "Iron Chef" judge on a bad day. The service and pacing weren't jiving either. The wine, however, was quite nice--if only the rest of the experience had lived up to it! Alas.
My overall dissatisfaction with NYC was further reinforced by our discovery that, once you go through security at LaGuardia, you don't have any meal options that include protein. If you happen to be traveling with a pregnant woman at lunch time, this is, politely, less than good. As an added bonus, the TSA folks gave Liz a bunch of crap about going through the security line a second time after leaving to get something edible. Luckily, the cats were happy to see us when we got home. And really, that's what matters.
- Mood: nonplussed
- Music: The Moody Blues - "Dear Diary"
After a long, long Friday night of staying up burning CDs for the rental car, and a long, long Saturday of airplanes, airports and power naps, we arrived in safely in Seattle and found our way to wolffire and gr0m1t's (very lovely) house without incident. After a bit of catching up we walked to nearby Circa, a West Seattle alehouse with supremely tasty food; I'm very satisfied with my choice of a Boundary Bay Blonde and the halibut tacos, a nigh-religious experience after a day of airplane food.
Today we have an appointment at Chateau Ste. Michelle and a bit of sightseeing planned, and then dinner at Beàto. In the morning, we head off to the other side of the state to start the wine visits in earnest. We're very happy to have made a better rental car selection than on our Napa trip (do not drive a Ford Taurus on windy, windy roads, kids); the comfy seats should be a nice bonus as we drive all over creation this week.
More later -- must eat breakfast and get going.
- Mood: happy
- Music: VNV Nation - "Testament"
I've heard that the measure of a party's excellence is how much one hurts the next day. By this metric, I have officially had the best birthday party ever. We wound down around four this morning, and I've just rolled out of bed to assess the situation, begin the first round of Advil, and start considering the degree to which I will be human today. My right shoulder hurts like hell from too much Wii Tennis, and I am generally crapulous. (I proclaim these proudly as merit badges earned by devotion to good partying.)
Many, many thanks to everyone who came, and especially to Liz for putting the whole thing together. It's not often that I get to feel terribly special, so it was a real treat.
- Mood: 30
- Music: Orbital - "Halcyon + On + On"
Fixing really esoteric and deeply buried, almost impossible bugs, the sorts of things that achieve near mythic proportions for their extreme rarity and ability to induce mass perplexion, is a rare and delicious treat. It brings such a sense of delicious righteousness once the cause of such an elegant problem is understood, and having been grokked, is crushed mercilessly out of existence.
However, it sucks when it keeps you in the office until nine o'clock.
But, besides making an eminently reheatable pizza, my adorably wonderful wife bought mini oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, which were utterly transcendent and perfectly paired with the Left Hand Imperial Stout that I'd had waiting in the fridge for me. Hooray, cookies and beer, I earned you today!
- Mood: whupped
- Music: The Pastels - "Nothing To Be Done"