What we drank this week (and how we felt about it), in no particular order.
Up the winding Willamette, almomst-but-not-quite into the hamlet of St. Johns, Cathedral Coffee waits like your favorite art teacher's living room, colors and books and wood and windows combining in one of Portland's most compelling spaces. Owner Austen Tanner conscripted friends from all over to help craft his coffeehouse, including Canadian graffiti artist David Brunning, who drew inspiration from the St. Johns bridge. Local micro roaster Tanager Coffee anchors the offerings at Cathedral, and pastries baked in-house daily cement the experience. I visited for the first time this week and was charmed beyond belief.
It had been a long time since I had a Hot Buttered Rum cocktail and made my own Thursday night. Like most classic cocktails it has an interesting history. Used a few new wine tools with a bottle of La Vieille Ferme 2013 that I worked on early in the week. I was light on the beer, but this week's highlight is a favorite of mine, Bell's Two Hearted Ale, which I ordered at Thou Mayest. Love that beer - a classic!
Stopped by Parisi for a very nice Ethiopia Sidamo espresso, and Crows and Homer's for lattes with espressos from Messenger. Ran into a few local industry celebs at Crows, and saw the framed 2014 Caffeine Crawl posters at Homer's. They look great!
Embarking on the self-guided culinary adventure Fort Collins Foodie Walk, libations were in no short supply. Starting with a Rooibos tea at The Bean Cycle (a personal addition), I sipped my way through Cranberry Clove soda from Backyard Soda Co., wassail at Blue Skies Winery, and a tea flight of "unusuals" at Happy Lucky's Tea House including a sticky rice pu-erh (yum!) and a knock-your-socks-off pomegranate oolong. Sipping Sweet Bloom's latest Ethiopian Natural from Harbinger while taking in the "chocolate class" at Nuance Chocolate rounded out the evening, and I savored the flavors of FoCo all the way home.
- A new bourbon whiskey showed up at Michael's house this week: Angel's Envy KSBW (finished in port barrels from the cellars of Lincoln Henderson). A bit warm to start off with then relaxing to a sweet caramel streak down the finish. One cube and a three finger pour was perfect to finish off the day!
- Beer cocktails making a mark in many KC spots these days: Michael enjoyed a Ginger IPA Fizz made with 75th Street Brewery's Summit Street IPA, Gosling's Ginger Beer and lemonade. In concept the drink was very attractive but too many hops can spoil the recipe. I would have opted for a less-hoppy option. When I craft my own this weekend I'll be using a softer IPA! Loved it nonetheless!
- With the relaxed import rules from Cuba to the US Michael thought some Havana Club 7-Year Rhum on the rocks would be a great way to celebrate! And he was right! Say yes to free trade with our neighbors 90 miles south!
- An interesting mix of beers for Michael this week: 75th Street Brewery (KCMO) Summit Street IPA blended in to an interesting beer cocktail with dinner for Michael (loads of hops)
- A house made Negroni using Missouri's own Pinckney Bend Gin finished off a great weekend with the family for Michael
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