A Vegetarian Mix Up

29 12 2011

Every year my co-workers and I are treated to a fancy lunch paid by my boss. It’s something I look forward to every year. We either do it for Thanksgiving or the winter holidays, and today was out annual paid for lunch for the holidays. The small group of the five of us headed over to Gordon Biersch in Chinatown to imbibe in the fancy food and beer that they serve up.

I walk by the restaurant/brewery almost daily and was just talking about the joint with a friend a few weeks ago, so I was pretty pumped. On G.B.’s website, I had noticed a vegetarian menu, which was pretty cool that they were so accommodating. (I’ve decided that for the month of December, and maybe longer, I’m going what I’ve called, Buffalo Wing-aterian; i.e: the only meat I will allow myself to eat are buffalo wings!) But when we got to our seats, I didn’t see the vegetarian menu out, and I was too shy to ask for one, so I figured I could just find something off the normal menu.

It came down to two dishes I was deciding over: lobster or salmon? The idea of a ginger rice seemed delectable, but the lobster would probably be more “lunch-like” and promising. So I went with the “Lobster Burger.” I must not have read the description correctly, because when my food came, I was thoroughly surprised. So surprised even, that when the waiter brought it out, I initially turned it away, since it didn’t look like what I had pictured it being. I should have just turned it back, because what I got ended up being a jumbo beef burger with a few measly pieces of lobster on top. For some reason, I thought I was ordering a lobster sandwich, and it was just called a “burger” for reasons unknown. (Yes, I thought it was odd, when they asked me how I’d like it cooked, but again, I assumed they were referring to the lobster, sort of like how you can get tuna cooked differently. Obviously, I don’t eat out enough. Maybe  I’m not as much a foodie as I had hoped I was.)

My lunch became compromised of the addicting garlic fries.

I was tempted to send it back, but it was my mistake that I misunderstood the menu/didn’t actually read the description, so I delved into the rest of the food on the plate. I eagerly gulped up the few small tidbits of lobster, and then created an odd sandwich of garlic fries, ketchup, lettuce, and tomato on the burger buns. Not the most delicious substitute, but thankfully our appetizer and the delicious beer I had (Hefeweizen) had proved substantial.

When the waiter came to clear our plates, I had to somehow explain that the reason a perfectly good slab of meat was left alone on my plate was because I mistakenly ordered wrong. It was pretty embarrassing but our waiter apologized profusely and offered to get me a crab cake instead. I had already missed the opportunity to send my dish back and had eaten everything else, so I turned down the generous offer. I was also surprisingly full- though maybe I was just overwhelmed with embarrassment. Thankfully, a co-worker offered to take my burger home to her daughter or dog, so the food wasn’t wasted.

I just felt so incredibly silly. I had been looking forward to this paid lunch for months, and when the time came, I basically ended up having a beer, french fries, and two burger buns. That’s not really what I call a meal worth the wait and the money, but at least the beer was especially delicious! I joked that I should have just had beer for lunch and that that would have been cheaper and more promising. Oh well, I guess that means I should just go back and better read the menu next time!


12 12 2011

Remember when I used to have weekly blog posts that many of you had become accustomed to? Well, I am slowly bringing back the weekly Thoughts From Last Week postings. It’s ok to secretly admit you missed them as much as I will secretly admit to missing them too. My collection of jotted down thoughts have been taking up space, and so thanks to CAPSLove, they are finally surfacing up for your enjoyment. These come from the last few weeks:


I don’t understand why nerds are associated with needing inhalers. Why??!

[Cool new band: Mariachi El Bronx.]

My Metro ride home is being overwhelmed by the putrid smell of a toddler’s poopy diaper, just on the other side of the aisle from where I’m sitting. When can I get off and escape?!

D-Day from “Animal House” is the original Hipster. I mean, check out that ‘stache!

My dinner tonight (in order)- 1 Dos Equis, 1 red wine Sangria, 1/2 “Texas sized” frozen strawberry-swirled Margarita, 1 Miller Lite, and chips and salsa. GAME ON.

Some lady got on the Metro who exclaimed to an acquaintance that she had just gotten laid off that morning. She was in tears. Her friend just acted non-chalantly. The real sad thing here is that the friend didn’t seem surprised or show any feelings. They both just kind of concluded that it was this darn economy.

I can’t tell if the person singing on my Metro train is singing for money, caroling, or just crazy/wants to sing for the heck of it; but I’m pretty sure it’s that last reason. He finished his song, said “thank you” and got off the train. Um, you’re welcome?

I’m just gonna put this out there, but PBR has more flavor than Bud Light.

I was having a conversation about Hipsters, and it was concluded that PBR has become too “mainstream-Hipster” so the latest acceptable Hipster beer is Natty Boh. How appropriate that I have five cans of it in my fridge!


Flip cup tournament pre-gaming. Like a true champion.


22 04 2011

It’s currently Passover and this year I wanted to try to go the whole holiday period without drinking beer. For those of you unfamiliar with the holiday, it has some food restrictions, specifically, eliminating foods and drink with yeast in them, thus making them “leavened.” Now, as you know, beer lists yeast as a key ingredient, which is why one would opt out of consuming this delectable beverage during this holiday. Granted, the food and beverage rules of Passover differ for how religious you are, and while I’ve never excluded beer from my Passover diet before, I was interested in doing so for this year.

All was going well until last night when I had my first Thursday kickball of the season. As I headed into the bar, I figured I could make do with drinking mixed drinks and water, and forgo the beer, and all would be ok. However, then came the obstacle of the ritual kickball bar game of Flip Cup. Sure, I didn’t need beer to play, but it was free and available.

I was succumbed into peer pressure and my low budget and did end up drinking more than reasonable amounts of beer. I decided that perhaps Passover is no match for Kickball and the ultimate fun that is Flip Cup.

So maybe next year I will be able to avoid drinking beer. I don’t think of myself as any less of a Jew for this decision, and it’s a good thing, these dietary rules are not strict, however, I do wish I could have declined the power of beer this once.


18 04 2011

Man. This week’s TFLW is really getting to be some slim pickings! I did however get a number of memorable quotes from last week, but they aren’t exactly appropriate for this sometimes-family-friendly blog. Maybe I’ll reserve those for another post. But this is ok. I have a second blog post for today, since this edition of Thoughts From Last Week will probably leave you wanting more. I don’t leave y’all unsatisfied, so trust me when I say, there’s more on the way!


The city is awash in red: Caps, Nats, and Phillies. On a related note, I just got giddy upon seeing a line of red traffic lights along 7th street. The NHL playoffs really are here!

New challenge: drink 20 beers over the course of a weekend. (Preferably two days.) I seem to think this is totally doable.

Sunday I was all anti-sitting down. WTF is up with that?!?


28 03 2011

This past week was all about alcohol, beer, and drinking (or lack thereof)! The majority of the following Thoughts are about just that.You may have all ready my mysterious post about my unplanned adventure on Tuesday, and the next day after, was another kickball [see: drinking] function! There are also a few movie clips in today’s post which I highly encourage you to check out. They are awesome. Enjoy the following beer-soaked TFLW!


I’m sitting next to the most awkward couple at the bar at the Exchange. A crazy, loud, black lady with a raspy voice and a cool young white man with a gentle persona. This does not seem to be their first date either.

Does a cucumber sushi roll even count as food?

Drunk on a Tuesday night. If I could eat anything… Saltines, salsa, french toast sticks, PANCAKES, apple pancakes, peach cobbler, green grapes! [Sounds like the beginning to the movie, "Half Baked..."]

The floor is so sticky at McFaddens, that every time I take a step, my flat [shoe] almost comes off. Ugh!

Ugh, I am being a party pooper because (among other reasons) I don’t want to drink because I got drunk last night- a TUESDAY, no less. Geez louise.

The most conversation I am having at this kickball party is in the bathroom [at McFaddens]. Brings me back to high school prom. I am such a girl!

I am under the impression that Guinness has very few calories and even has protein, thus making it a better choice than some of the other beers out there. But I want to know how much better this is compared to your average Miller or Bud Light.

There is a commercial for the new, Diary of a Wimpy Kid movie where they mouth the words to Ke$ha’s song, “Tik Tok.” I am SO torn on seeing the movie now. Noooo!

[At a Baltimore Blast indoor soccer game:] People are so confused about the high attendance saying, “I’ve never seen so many people here before, not even for a championship game!” Thanks Livingsocial for turning such a sad sports team into a huge ordeal!

It Was Only Two

23 03 2011

This morning I woke up hungover. Last night I got drunk. Unusually drunk. Unusual for a few reasons. First of all, because it was a Tuesday. Second of all, because I ate a full meal before I drank. Thirdly, my drinks were somewhat spaced out. But most unusual of all, I only had two drinks.

The scene was at The Exchange; I was originally there for a kickball meeting, but stayed to watch the Caps game. (Which, by the way, the Caps won in a shoot-out against the Flyers. Woohoo!) I didn’t even plan on drinking that night. But I wanted to watch the game and sit at the bar, and I feel awkward doing so if I’m not going to order anything. Plus, I only needed one more beer to have my 100th new beer (since 2010). The bartender, Chris, was extremely welcoming and friendly, and upon taking a look at my Beer Log, he shared with me the pamphlet his parents brought back for him from a beer-loving event in Atlanta. The Exchange had two beers I had yet to try, so I figured it was meant to be.

As I mentioned however, I only had two beers. My hypothesis is that both of these beers had an unusually high alcohol percentage, thus accounting for why I became so intoxicated. (There is no other explanation!) Both brews were from my new favorite brewery from Maryland, Flying Dog. I also didn’t particularly enjoy either of them. The beers were the Double Pale Ale “Doubie Dog” and the “Gonzo” Imperial Porter. The Double Pale Ale was especially hoppy and bitter and had a slight carmel taste to it. The Imperial Porter was strong on the malty flavor, and neither would be a beer I would necessarily order again, unfortunately.

I went to the Flying Dog website to investigate these beers, and sure enough my assumption was correct! Somehow I had managed to choose probably the highest alcohol percent/volume beers at the bar. That was quite a surprise. Hold on to your hats folks, because according to the Flying Dog website, the Double Pale Ale is a whopping 11.5% alcohol by volume. And to top my night off, the Gonzo Imperial Porter hits at the still high 9.2%. Geez Louise!

So I suppose these two beers really did warrant waking up in not the most ideal state. It was kind of like I drank five normal or light beers, which for me is enough to get me good and drunk. I suppose I could have asked the bartender for the details on each beer, but not only did I not think it was necessary, but going in blindly, I didn’t know it may have been helpful. So what did I learn from last night? Either to do research before I venture into the ever-exciting world of alcohol, or if I’m not in the mood to drink, then I shouldn’t. But, even so, I am glad I sampled these beers. Just maybe at a different time, it would have been a better choice.


8 03 2011

This past week was just like any other week of gems, except -gasp!- somehow I managed to go a whole week without complaining about the always faulty Metro system. This is seriously a high point. Anyways, last week brought the Caps a few new players, some quality drinking experiences for yours truly, and really, just some quality thinking person’s thoughts. Do enjoy…


The Caps’ new player, Dennis Wideman is a cutie and only 27. I’ll take it! Welcome to D.C!

Dennis Wideman

I dreamt it was snowing really hard out, I had a pet rabbit, and I locked my key in my apartment. I got lost trying to find my way around my college (where I was living) because it was really my high school. Plus, Spike and I had a long heart-to-heart conversation about a number of things.

“Just scoogle it” aka: ‘just google it’ in my friend’s mind’s ear.


I think I need to get skinnier skinny jeans. The odd baggy look doesn’t quite look right. (But yay for dieting?)

It’s a Kinks kind of night.

You know what would be awkward? If “Papa” John wasn’t actually a Papa.

Papa? John

If I were a bartender [at a sports bar], I would do a terrible job. I would just be watching the TV’s the whole time!

There’s really nothing like getting drunk on a Monday. What a way to start the work week.

OMG as of the beginning of last year, I have tried 99 new beers. It’s almost time for a party to celebrate 100!

Beer Resolutions

4 01 2011

Last year, one of my New Year’s Resolutions was to try 20 new beers. Unaware that 20 was actually a pretty simple goal to achieve, I actually surpassed it and drank my way to a whopping 73 new brews. I initially thought that I would blog about each new beer in this blog, but after mentioning the first in a post, I gave that notion up. (Although, that would make for a pretty good blog all by itself.)

Out of the 73 beers I tried, there were 14 beers that I were especially fond of. Thanks to my record keeping from last year, I can transcribe those exceptional beverages to CAPSLove now. Below is the list of the best beers I tasted in 2010:

  1. Southhampton Double White
  2. Founders Double Trouble Imperial IPA
  3. Well’s Banana Bread Beer
  4. Starr Hill Lucy Spring Ale
  5. Sam Adams Cherry Wheat
  6. Leinie’s Summer Shandy
  7. Dogfish Punkin Ale
  8. Backdraft Brown
  9. Flying Dog Coffee Stout
  10. Saranac Adirondack Lager
  11. Post Road Pumpkin Ale
  12. Pilsner Urquell
  13. Winter’s Bourbon Cask Ale
  14. Flying Dog Single Hop IPA

From last year’s drinking I have come to some new and exciting knowledge. It seems that I have yet to drink a beer from the Maryland-based, Flying Dog Brewery that I did not like. So good job for Maryland for being an awesome state yet again. (Also, the brewery is very pro-Hunter S. Thompson, an amazing writer who I love.)

Unfortunately though, not every beer I tried was good. But this has to be expected, when you’re experimenting so much. The award for worst beer of 2010 goes to hands down, Old Chub – Scottish Ale.  This canned number was initially purchased for it’s surprisingly high 8.5% alc./vol. and was consumed at my birthday party at Capitol Hill’s pleasant dive, Pour House. It smelled of trash and tasted nasty. Even the bartender confessed to not hearing many good things about the beer. It’s pretty sad though, since “Old Chub” is a pretty great name, and I do love all things Scotland. Too bad I had to learn the hard way.

In 2011 one of my resolutions is to drink 50 new beers. I feel like this is actually a decent challenge, since I already have added over 70 new beers to my repertoire. This resolution to continue to expand my palette of beers has been not only obviously fun, but also pretty knowledgeable. I am all for learning (about food and drink) in an enjoyable way, and drinking beer is indeed a good time.



Texts From Last Week 11

1 11 2010

Did everyone have a fun and safe Halloween? I know I did. I dressed up in possibly my best costume since I can remember and had fun with friends during the whole weekend. I know a few of you are awaiting a post to be written about the John Stewart/Stephen Colbert Rally that happened on Saturday, but that post will not be up today. Instead I have possibly the most texts from a one-week period to show for you. They start out with a bunch about the ever-awful Metro, but then we get some goodies about the holiday weekend and then some. Enjoy…


“When I’m on the Metro and we’re stopped for a great deal of time, usually this occurs in the mornings, making the commute into work Hellish; I don’t mind. ‘We are holding here momentarily and we regret this inconvenience’ doesn’t say ANYTHING useful to us passengers. There is no point in repeating this useless phrase. Something simple and informative like, “we are single tracking due to a situation between Friendship Heights and Van Ness” would be helpful, but no. Instead I get my metr-fail-updates via a passenger with an iPhone who is announcing his findings to his neighbors. LAME!”

And on a similar note…

“It’s taken the Metro roughly 34 minutes to go 3.5 stops. WTF guys. I’ve been on the Metro when it’s been single-tracking before, but it’s never been this bad! I’m going to guess that it takes me 50 minutes to get home during what should be a 25 minute trip. Fast, normal speed? Yes please! What a concept!” [It actually took around 45 minutes. It was a close guess.]

“I’m starting to use the Metro as a means to improve my sense of balance. I am holding onto the railings less [when I stand]. Besides, if I can avoid contact with these germ-covered poles, that is also a plus. Metro Surfing championship, here I come!”

“I heard a baby crying when it got onto my train this morning. I’d be crying too, if I had to ride the Metro. -Oh wait, I do.”

“Sometimes when I’m bored, I like to wander around a CVS. Some people leisurely grocery shop, but I leisurely pharmacy shop.”

“A French Horn player at the Metro is playing, “The Nutcracker Suite.” Christmas in October? As much as I love that music, that timing’s a tad odd.”

A new record is born: 3 beers in 22 minutes. Wow, go me.”

“The most patriotic part of the rally was The National Anthem. everything else was just silly.”

“My parents are asking me about the term, ‘tea bagging’ and it couldn’t be any more awkward.”

And lastly…

“What Halloween weekend has left me with [that I didn't have beforehand]: 1 set of handcuffs, 1 red feather boa, 2 bottles of Blue Moon, 2 bottles of Miller Lite, 2 bottles of Fosters, 1 CVS prepared Tuscan Panini, 1 CVS prepared chicken salad wrap, 1 CVS prepared penne and meatballs, 1/2 Bar Louie chicken sandwich, 1 2-liter bottle of Cherry Coke.”

A New Record

23 07 2010

A few weeks ago I was meeting up with someone and wanted to be good and tipsy/drunk before I saw this person. I went to one of my go-to bars in the city and thanked the powers that be for Happy Hour. I hadn’t eaten anything for a while and was able to consume three pints of beer in 30 minutes.

This past week I set out to beat that record. I went to a Kickball Happy Hour-turned party. Again, I hadn’t eaten in a while, so the beer I was to consume went down easier. I didn’t have to fret about feeling too full to take on this challenge. So I have set my newest record. Though it isn’t much different, my new beer-consumption-in-a-short-period-of-time is now: 3 beers in 29 minutes. Take that, chumps!

Happy Friday!


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