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farm to fork? that’s only half of the solution to part of the problem.

lots of buzz these days about “farm to fork”, and for good reason: fresher produce, lower carbon emissions in transport, supporting local  farmers and even boosting the local economy with farmers markets (did you ever notice that burt’s bees is at every farmers market?  ). furthermore, if you grow your own stuff you can even save a few bucks. even uncle sam used to think it was good idea and maybe that’s a “backyard to fork”  movement we can all get behind.

but what we’ve noticed is that, despite all the farm to fork press,  it appears that many people still fail at the “fork to mouth” part. check out diagram 1. this poor sap is spilling peas all over his shirt.

 

it’s sad to see food wasted like that. so we’re happy to propose our new “fork to mouth” initiative. check out figure 3 (figure 2 is top secret patent applied for process) for clear and concise directions on how to get that food where it belongs. .

fork_2_mouth copy fig 3

 

but why stop at fork to mouth?  we tried to dis-intermediate the fork entirely but “hand to mouth” had been used before and while  “farm to mouth” sounded good, timmy said we should wash the vegetables first and “farm to sink to mouth” didn’t have quite the same ring to it as “farm to mouth”.  so “fork to mouth” it is and, as always, we’re  happy to be of service.

ps:  “fork to eye ” should be avoided at all costs.

fork-in-eye

 

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it’s mister beer! he’s back and he’s got a bottle of brooklyn’s local 1

 Most people familiar with craft beers and micro-brews have heard of New York City’s own Brooklyn Brewery.  Brooklyn was created in
1987 by two men: Steve Hindy, an AP Middle East correspondent, and Tom Potter,
a banker.

 

They began by brewing Brooklyn Lager, a “pre-Prohibition” style lager in the vein of turn-of-the-century New York beers.  This beer, hand-peddled on the streets of NYC in the early 1990s, led to the creation of their official brewery in 1996 and rocketed them to the fame, success, and prestige they enjoy today.  In fact, their present head-brewer, Garrett Oliver, is widely regarded by his peers and beer-aficionados as the preeminent American brewer.  These guys know what they’re doing.

Over the past few years Brooklyn, under the direction of Oliver, has been ever-expanding its repertoire of beers with more exotic creations like Sorachi Ace, and the Brooklyn Locals 1 and 2.  Though we at the Little Pub were lucky enough to get both the Brooklyn Local 1 and the Sorachi Ace, here I’ll be discussing the Local 1.

The Local 1 is an American take on a Belgian strong ale.  Actually, it’s more of a true Belgian beer that happened to be brewed by Americans.  Its ingredients are primarily European: it utilizes Belgian yeast, as well as German hops, malt, and barley.  The only oddball ingredient is, according to their website’s description, “aromatic raw sugar from Mauritius”.  All beers use some form of sugar in the fermentation process, I just thought it was a little odd that they should travel all the way to Mauritius to obtain it.

This beer does have one unique twist, however: it’s bottle conditioned, or as Brooklyn calls it, “re-fermented”.  Bottle-conditioning is today a rarely used brewing process in which the brewer inserts an extra dose of sugar into the beer as it’s being bottled, resulting in an additional stage of fermentation.  This extra fermentation consequently increases the depth, richness and palate of the beer.

The local pours an opaque pale golden color, with a large and fluffy head that lingers in delicate lacing along the glass.  Like its Belgian brethren, this is a bright and aromatic beer with odors of citrus, coriander, clove, and sweet yeast.  Take your first gulp and revel in the tangy carbonation, the sweet flavors of malt mingling with lemon, wildflowers, and spice.  Bursts of flavor linger long as the beer finishes sweet and spicy, crisply and dryly.  The mouthfeel is fairly medium bodied, though it will seem lighter due to the intense carbonation that results from the extra sugar added to the beer.

This is a American homage to Belgian brewing that ranks right up with the best of them, like Duvel and Chimay.  Best of all, you don’t need to hop a train or bus or cab into the city to get it.  Come on down to the Pub and get Local.

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psssst! hey, do you want a google + account invite?

at little pub we often ponder life’s little questions;

if a tree fall in the woods and no one hears it does it make a sound?

do you get a big shock or a little shock if you put a fork in the electric outlet?

if we have a littlepub page on google+ and nobody is using google+ are we leading edge or just talking to ourselves?

we don’t really care about the first question, and we’re not about to find out on the second, but on the third, well maybe we can try to get some more folks on board.

the thing is, google+ is still invite only at this stage. we were invited and we always say the more the merrier so if you’re interested in joining google+ send an email to info@littlepub.com with “please add me google+” in the subject line and we’ll send you an invite.

The Google+ Project

and if you don’t know what google+ is, well you will soon.  read this link

http://www.google.com/+/learnmore/

 

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no pie for you, but we did see the giant head of the taconic parkway.

so we went to the adirondacks and we were all set to bring back
some of those awesome very berry pies from the noon mark diner, but they were closed when we drove by so no pie. boo hoo!

but it wasn’t a complete waste because we did get to check out that ginormus zippy
the pinhead statue right off the taconic parkway ( or maybe it’s ny giants
quarterback y.a. tittle? that would make more sense than zippy. ).

giant head on the taconic parkway

anyway, you can go visit the giant head of the taconic yourself if you want : http://www.fairpoint.net/~kanwit/map.htm  . sorry about the pie. we’ll get there earlier next time.

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ghandi-bot cans in the beer cooler. keep it between us.

psst.. we’ve got a secret. there’s a case of ghandi-bot cans stashed in the back left corner of the walk in. this is the only announcement you will see.. it’s not printed on the beer list, so ask your server, and  keep this between us, because once they’re gone, they’re gone.

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celebrate feestdag at little pub thursday july 21.

hey everybody, it’s feestdag on thursday 7/21! you remember feestdag, it’s that belgian holiday commemorating the date king leopold took his oath before the belgian parliament. more importantly, feestdag also translates to “party day” so some on down to little pub and celebrate feestdag with a palm draft when you order palm battered fish and chips, half priced palm drafts, and whatever else we can think of . yes, feestdag is on at little pub and even the flanders and walloons can agree on that (and they don’t agree on anything)!

 

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it’s mister beer! offering a bit of beer history while (whilst?) making lovey dovey googly eyes at dogfish, pining for midas touch in general and casting a sideways glance at sah’tea .

In 1516, the Bavarians issued the Reinheitsgebot*, a purity
law that stated beer could be made with only three ingredients: water, hops,
and barley.

 

Of course, this was before the discovery of yeast and its
fundamentally crucial role in the creation and production of beer, but still,
to a modern micro-brewer, what rigid guidelines!  Interestingly enough,
the vast majority of German brewers still adhere to this basic principle.
Not so much Sam Calagione, Dogfish Head Breweries creator, owner, and
luminary.

Most micro-brew enthusiasts have tried or at least have
heard of Dogfish Head beers, many of which are commonly known as “extreme
beers” in reference to their high ABV, their unique ingredients, and the
unorthodox methods and procedures used to brew them.  Dogfish’s motto is
“off-centered ales for off-centered people”, an apt slogan
indeed.  Interestingly enough, as wacky as certain Dogfish beers are, some
of their most acclaimed creations are actually modern interpretations of ancient
beers.  For instance, the recipe for their “Midas Touch” dates
back to 730 B.C. and was culled from the resins that were left inside the
drinking urns unearthed in the tombs of Phrygian Kings (King Midas!), bygone
rulers of what is now Turkey.  Apparently the Phrygians used to brew beer
with honey, barley, grapes and saffron, and so Dogfish set about ressurecting
this most ancient of beers.

In keeping with this ancient-to-modern tradition, our latest
mystery beer, Dogfish’s Sah’Tea, has its origins in a 9th century proto-beer
brewed in Finland known as Sahti.  Sahti is made primarily with malted and
unmalted grains like rye and barley, and is unique in that it derives most of
its flavor not from hops but from juniper berries.  In keeping with
Dogfish’s off-centered mantra, Sam Calagione decided to infuse his version of
Sahti with a unique blend of Chai Tea (ingredients include cardamom, coriander,
ginger, allspice, rampe leaves, lemongrass, curry powder, and black tea), hence
“Sah’Tea”.  Clever, no?  Now, I majored in history and
though I love my field, I am well aware of the narcoleptic properties of its
lectures, so let’s get to the beer.

Sah’tea pours a nice golden-orange color, with a rather
insignificant head.  It is highly aromatic with a spicy nose, and you’ll
breathe in hues of banana, lemon, coriander, and ginger, with a ubiquitous
undercurrent of tangy juniper.  Consider the aromas a prediction of
flavors to come, as its palate (to me) almost tastes like a sweetly sour banana
infused with juniper and a variety of subtle spices deriving from the tea
infusion.  Personally, I was taken aback by its mouthfeel.
Stylistically the Sah’Tea is fairly close to a weizen (wheat beer), however,
its mouthful in certain ways is closer to a stout or porter: full, rich, and
not too heavily carbonated.  The beer finishes smoothly given its 9 % ABV,
with a lingering aftertaste of spice and juniper.

Overall, I really enjoyed the Sah’Tea, though I will say
that this beer is probably not for everyone.  It is very complex, very
esoteric, quite strong, and is widely open to interpretation; go on
Beeradvocate if you feel like a background check.  So, if you’re a staunch
follower of the Reinheitsgebot, I’d shy away from this beer.  But if
you’re feeling a little bold, a little thirsty, individualistic, and dare-I-say
a little off-centered, then you best get down to the Little Pub asap and try
this piece of twisted history before it dries up and goes the way of the
Phrygians, entombed forever as a resinous memory in your skull and liver.

*http://www3.sympatico.ca/n.rieck/docs/Reinheitsgebot.html

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smokin cigar box blues!

 

this tuesday night at little pub, the “hardest working bluesman in ct” (according to the new york times)  ramblin’ dan stevens. rambling dan  bring his acoustic blues show to little pub. ever see a guy play authentic slide blues on a cigar box guitar? well, here’s your chance.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l6fIFlet6WM

At the young age of sixteen, Dan Stevens’ romantic streak was ignited by his
first guitar teacher in small town central Pennsylvania who told him stories
about the lives of traveling blues musicians like Mississippi John Hurt and Fred
McDowell. After being inspired by Woody Guthrie’s book, “Bound for Glory”, the
magnetic lure of the road captured his imagination and with a driving passion he
hitchhiked and hopped freight trains guitar in hand across the United States
five times, eventually covering over 100,000 miles.


Always seeking diverse experiences, he has worked as a teacher in Pennsylvania and Arizona, a
rock-climbing instructor in New Mexico, broke his collarbone riding bulls in
Colorado and sailed schooners for a living on the Eastern seaboard. He
lived full time on his own wooden sloop in Mystic CT for a couple of years while
performing solo up and down the East Coast. A high-light of this period was
sailing throughout Central and South America as mate aboard David Crosby’s
(Crosby, Nash, and Young) sailboat, the Mayan.

Musically, Dan continued
to hone his guitar skills taking lessons from renowned acoustic guitarist and
W.C. Handy Award winner Paul Rishell, who taught him how to play slide. Later,
he was blessed to study with Greenwich Village based folk/blues icon Dave Van
Ronk during the last years of Van Ronk’s storied life. His repertoire reflects
the influence of his revered teachers who actually knew and performed with many
of the legendary blues masters. His tastes include delta blues “bottleneck
slide” tunes, the more carefree piedmont style, and arrangements comprised of
complex orchestration with plenty of chord changes up the neck in the spirit of
Dave Van Ronk. His originals remain true to the traditional forces which
powerfully shaped his early musical development and prompt listeners to praise
the authenticity of his approach.

As a full time professional musician
since 1991, Dan continues to tour incessantly along the East Coast, U.S. Virgin
Islands, U.K., and Germany. He has appeared with such artists as James Cotton,
Charlie Musselwhite, Arlo Guthrie, Richie Havens, Charlie Daniels, Livingston
Taylor, Ronnie Earl, and others. An irrepressible guitar collector, Dan
surrounds himself with vintage and custom instruments acquired in his many
travels. Usually packing three guitars, any given performance may find him
choosing to play a 1950’s Sears Silvertone, a 1931 National Steel, a retro lime
green Resophonic, and more.

Dan’s most recent CD, “Broke Down and
Hungry”, features “Sugar Ray” Norcia, of Sugar Ray & the Bluetones and
Roomful of Blues, on harmonica. Original songs such as “Broke Down and Hungry”,
“Driving Fool”, “Open Road”, and “Ramblin’” give a sense of what is was like for
him to travel 165,000 miles in three years in an ’88 Chevy Van. Art Tipaldi,
Senior Writer for the Blues Revue magazine, in his review of this CD, offered,
“His stylish fingerpicking and warm vocals shade these tunes with fresh,
penetrating nuances.” Several of his traditional offerings include Big Bill
Broonzy’s “Keep Your Hands Off Her” and “Long Tall Mama”, as well as Reverend
Gary Davis’ “Light of this World”. In live shows, Dan often pauses between
songs, offering historical trivia or relating incidents from his personal
experience.

Termed “Connecticut’s hardest working bluesman” by the New
York Times in 2002, he plays over 200 engagements a year, including concerts,
clubs, festivals, coffeehouses, community and private events and educational
programs. He has appeared at Long Island’s Riverhead Blues Festival, the Berlin
Blues Festival in Connecticut and was the closer in the acoustic section of the
Fleet Blues Festival in Albany, New York. Dan was a finalist at the
International Blues Challenge ’08 on Beale Street in Memphis TN with partner
Chris D’Amato and has been chosen to be included on the roster of the Music
Under New York program enabling him to perform in prime locations throughtout
the MTA system such as Times Square and Grand Central Station.  He lives in Old
Lyme, Connecticut with his wife Gail and daughter, Haley.

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pj pacifico at little pub every monday night. like clockwork.

there’s something to be said for pj pacifico’s new album “outlet”, but the quotes below seem to say it all.

come see pj every monday night at little pub.

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die bierfrau die! on hitachino espresso stout, german owls, household uses for beer, and other random musings

After a short but relaxing vacation, Bierfrau has returned with renewed interest and praise for Hitachino Nest’s Espresso Stout.

This delicious and flavorful stout comes all the way from the Kuichi brewery in Japan. It pours a rich dark brown hue with a frothy tan head while scents of chocolate and coffee waft noseward. More carbonated and lighter-bodied than you’d expect a stout to be, the beer takes its time to finish and you’ll be thankful it does. Don’t miss the adorable label (did the Frau just deter some Manns by using the word adorable?) which features a color palate yanked from the couch in your first apartment and a squat, red and white wide-eyed Eule  – you’re going to have to try the beer to learn that word! (Or…there is always the Internet).

So why is this the beer of choice for this installment? Because the Bierfrau learned a terrific second function for the stout while on vacation – marinade! Step one: decide to cook steaks. Step two: realize you do not have anything with which to marinate or cook said steaks. Step three: reach for Hitachino’s Espresso Stout. Step four: marinate steaks with the stout and various spices. Step five: cook and enjoy the heck out of your creation.*

This is what the Bierfrau likes to call beerconomizing or be(er)ing creative. Why not see what scrumptious beers are nestled in your fridge and get inspired? The potential for beer’s du(ale)ity is endless! For example, Bierfrau’s Mutti uses Budweiser (or any cheap beer) to bait the slugs in her gardens. It is a great alternative to commercially sold slug bait and it is organic! Some people also swear by beer shampoo to increase body and shine. The protein from the malts and hops in the beer coats the strands and helps to rebuild. Dull gold jewelry? Flat beer can be used as a cleanser when applied to your precious. Wet a rag with the beer and scrub. With a clean rag, dry your pieces and perfekt! Good as neu!

But the one use Bierfrau is most excited to try is the beersicle. Why not enjoy the upcoming holiday weekend with an ice-cold Hitachino Stout beersicle? Because nothing screams “American” more than inventive ways to use and consume things made in foreign countries.

 *Caramelized onions also taste yummy when sautéed in the stout.

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