Posts tagged ‘ipa’

August 22, 2011

Picture A Fun Weekend

Kevin and I packed our bags and headed west this weekend. Well, not too west, just out to the Midwest to see my parents. We had a fun weekend of good food, good beers, and great company.

I spent a bit of quality time with the fam (and their two adorable kittens) Friday night. We started the evening with pale ales and India pale ales from Boulevard Brewing Company. Both were great! I thoroughly recommend them.

Later that evening, Kevin got an IPA from 75th Street Brewing that tasted of hops and grapefruit. I had a Tallgrass Brewing Company brown ale. Both were quit tasty and went well with the fig, prosciutto, and caramelized onion pizza.

We shopped alllllll day Saturday. By the way, has anyone seen this sweet product – love it!

After a yummy BBQ dinner, we all had my mom’s awesome blackberry cobbler for dessert. It was my version of birthday cake.

Due to all these indulgences, I tried to make Sunday a little healthier. I cooked salmon for the first time, and it actually turned out pretty well. I served it atop a bed of black beans, spices, and veggies. Delish!

Kevin made the mistake of letting Leia try a mini bite of his salmon, and she quickly jumped in his lap with hopes for more. Can you see her tongue reaching for it??? What a goof!

If you could have any dessert for your birthday, what would it be?

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August 5, 2011

Calci-yum

Hello!  I have the day off from work, but I’ll still be pretty productive.  I have 3 doctor appointments today.  (Well, technically 1 is a dentist appointment.)  Today I get to see the podiatrist.  Hopefully I’ll get all my foot issues fixed.  Cross your fingers for me!

Now it’s time for the topic of the day, calci-yum.  I threw the “yum” in there because 1) I’m a dork and 2) getting calcium can be delicious.  In my One Hot Mess of a post, I mentioned that one of my goals is to actually take my calcium supplements instead of habitually ignoring the bottle on my vanity.  Some of you mentioned that you wouldn’t mind a special calcium-devoted post, so here it is.

milk n' almond milk

According to WebMD, our bodies need calcium because it helps to strengthen bones and prevent certain cancers.  In addition, Prevention magazine states that calcium and vitamin D can also help ward off type-2 diabetes.  The National Institute of Health (NIH) suggests that calcium can also help with weight maintenance; WebMD explains how.  Here’s the NIH table of calcium requirements:

calcium

We know we need it, here are a few examples from the Milk Matters campaign explaining how to get it.

  • 1 cup of milk = 300 mg and calories vary depending on type
  • 1 cup plain, fat-free yogurt = 425 mg (note: most yogurt doesn’t come in 1-cup containers) and 127 calories
  • 1 cup cooked soybeans = 285 mg and 175 calories
  • 1 medium stalk of broccoli = 180 mg and 106 calories
  • 1/2 cup spinach (cooked from frozen) = 139 mg and 27 calories

milk v almond milk

Keep in mind that the body can only take in about 500 mg of calcium at once, so don’t spend get it all in one place.

Of course, you can always pop a pill.  One WebMD article says that the type of calcium you take does not matter, so you can just opt for the cheaper one.  Getting one with vitamin D is often helpful though, since vitamin D helps calcium absorption.  (Most doctors recommend taking supplement with food to promote absorption, but the Dairy Council says veggies and grains can inhibit absorption… hmmmm???)  My doctor recommended Citracal, so that’s what I take.  Luckily, they have coupons on their website right now.

There’s more to it than popping a pill or eating yogurt.  For extra bone health, bone-up on your vitamin D, and include weight bearing exercises in your fitness routine.  (Woohoo!  All my years of playing soccer helped my bones!)  WebMD also gives us the less fun info: limit sodas, antacids, caffeine, excessive alcohol, excessive sodium, and excessive red meat.

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Oh, and by the way, I was going to swim some laps today at the gym, but I’m just not feeling it.  I stayed up too late, and although I’m up early now, I think I’d rather just go tomorrow.  I’ll probably do some pilates later before lunch instead.

So why was I up late???  IPA Day of course!  Here’s what I did: beer shop with drinks and dinner, then a friend’s house to celebrate the occasion.

montage of beer

Do you take a calcium supplement?  Did you celebrate IPA Day?

August 4, 2011

IPA Day

Happy IPA Day! Head over to BeerWench for more info!  For those who didn’t know, there are different styles of IPA, but my favorites are the American ones. By design, American IPAs usually have more hop and herbal flavor, but be careful since they often contain more alcohol as well. In honor of IPA day, I’d like to do a special post on the relationship between beer and health.

IPA Day

First and foremost, I’m not one to say beer is or isn’t healthy. It’s all about moderation, and I’m no dietitian. You have probably seen articles on beer’s health benefits, most of them appearing around St. Patty’s day or Oktoberfest. Even though the topic is “beer,” these studies are more like shot of tequila – best when taken with a grain of salt.

beer

Some studies claim that that one or two beers a day can significantly lower blood pressure, and I can sort of see how relaxing and enjoying a good brew can be a healthy stress reliever. In my opinion, beers happen to go down much easier than a dose of asprin. I have also read a number of times that…

  • Beer can help with bone density, especially IPAs due to their silicon levels
  • A brew after physical exertion helps prevent sore muscles
  • Some types of beer can be thought of as a complex carbohydrates (kind of a stretch)

On the other hand… no researcher can deny that all forms of alcohol impair judgment, make your liver work overtime, and make you think ordering a pizza at 3 a.m. is the best idea you’ve ever had. See more dangers of alcohol at this Active.com article.

Stone IPA

Tons of studies have found that a daily glass of wine or piece of chocolate is good for you, and I’m not disparaging those claims either. You have to admit; publications that print/post this stuff are telling people what they want to hear, but I don’t blame them. People eat this up like nachos (Think that’s not a good comparison? You just haven’t seen me devour good nachos.)

cashew un-cheeze sauce

I don’t want anyone to get the impression that I consider my beer-drinking ways to be healthy, but my pints are part of a healthy life that’s sprinkled with good times, indulgences, and occasional trips to the bar.

  • Self Magazine explains a number of ways beer can be healthy.  For instance, Self says hops have polyphenols, which lower bad cholesterol.
  • Draft Magazine’s “Beer Runner” explains how beer can be good for runners in one or more of his blog posts.
  • Men’s Health Magazine talks about how beers can boost your metabolism.  (How much did they pay a researcher to say that??? Lolz)

Will you be celebrating IPA Day?  What’s your favorite food/beverage day?

July 1, 2011

Beach, Beer, and Bikini

Today started out with a good workout and another parfait.  Those two things help make for a good morning.  Then again, how could a Friday not start off well?  Actually, don’t answer that; we’re focusing on positives here.

One positive is that it’s going to be a long weekend, thanks to Independence Day.  My office lets out a few hours early the day before long weekends, so that’s another positive.  A third positive is that I’m going to the beach this weekend.

beach

Beach Flashback Pics

I’m pretty excited for the three B’s: beach, beer, and bikini.

Speaking of beer, I’d like to do a quick brew review for you.  This is one of Kevin’s favorite beers, and I’m a big fan myself.  I got to enjoy it last weekend, and in doing so, I took both notes and pictures.  I’m such a good blogger.

Smuttynose IPA

First and foremost, this is an awesome label for a bottle.  Okay, now let’s get down to business.

beer

Appearance

It’s a light color for an IPA, and it has a nice golden tint.  As you can see, this is an unfiltered beer.  That’s one of the reasons why Kev and I love it.  After a bottle pour, you can see a very thin head.  It’s a nice lingering lace, but nothing much.

beer

Smell

I didn’t take many notes on the smell, probably because it was not all that aromatic.  I guess that’s better than smelling funky though, right?

Taste

This beer tastes of citrus, and it’s so refreshing!  By IPA standards, it’s not that bitter, but it has a little bite.  There’s also that hoppy flavor I love, as well as a hint of pine.  It’s not a light beer, clocking in a 6.9% ABV, but the alcohol content is not overpowering.  Thank goodness!

Mouthfeel

Despite the cloudiness, there is not a thick feel to this.  You you notice the smooth richness, not a heavy thickness.  It is moderate in carbonation.

Overall

Overall, I like it.  I know I already said that, but now it’s official.  It’s hard to switch from this to another IPA since this one is quite unique.  If you order one, stop there or stick with it!  This brew earned an A- from the Beer Advocate Community but an A+ from “The Bros” at Beer Advocate.

beer3

Here’s a link from the Women of Craft Beer.  The ladies give 3 suggestions for Independence Day brews to enjoy during your festivities.

I have a cookout to attend at the neighbor’s house on Monday when I return from the beach.  I don’t think I’ll have any beer, but maybe I’ll bring some of my Food Should Taste Good chips to share.  I’d like to share some with you too, so enter my giveaway!

What are your plans for the weekend?  Will you be firing up the grill?

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