This spring I decided to convert my backyard into a garden area. When I was a kid, we always had a huge garden. So instead of more shrubs I planted sunflowers, pumpkins, cucumbers, watermelons, tomatoes, potatoes, carrots, onion and garlic. All the things I like to eat and cook with. Its amazing how good food taste fresh out of the garden. This week the tomatoes are ripening and cooking with fresh garlic is a real treat too.
My new year doesn't start on January 1st. It starts after I take down my Christmas tree. So 2018 started for me on the 4th this year. We spent the holidays here in Portland then headed north to Vancouver, Canada for New Year’s Eve.
Getting to Seattle from Portland usually takes two and half hours; but the Friday after Christmas, it took us over four hours to crawl up the I-5. We pretty much hit every rush hour from Portland out. It didn’t help that it was pouring rain that afternoon and into the night.
Though at the end of the road, we were rewarded with a bit of a getaway to our favorite hotel, The Sorrento. It’s a small boutique hotel built in 1909; it has a great vibe that the newly built ones just can't replicate.
The morning after our stay, we started our trip onto Vancouver. With all the other holiday travelers on the road, we were slowed to a stop at the Canadian Border. It took us a nearly two hours to cross that day!
Once in Vancouver, it was great to see all my friends and to celebrate with them over food, drink, and laughs.
Ali here... Instead of bikes and cars, real estate and fundraisers; we’re going to talk about beer this week!
Portland has this great food truck, coffee shop, and wine scene; plus more beer and breweries than the average guy can keep up with. I’m going to share with you here, a few of our favorites.
The Imperial Bottle Shop just opened its second location on Alberta Street this year. It has a selection of 300+ bottles of beer on the wall and cooler, and it offers fresh pours out of 28 taps! There’s even a couple of old-school arcade games for your playing pleasure.
Breakside Brewery has a lot of everything going on. From award-winning IPAs to a pet project of barrel-aged sours, it has got something for every palate. These guys are pretty good in the kitchen too. We’ve enjoyed a great meal or two at both the Dekum and Slabtown locations.
Pfriem has a classic line that perfectly suits the traditionalist. Included in its over two dozen classic offerings are a Pilsner, Pale Ales, a Mexican Lager, and a whole bunch of IPAs for good measure. Pfriem Family Brewers is in Hood River, about an hour drive out of Portland.
With over 100 breweries in the Portland Metro area, it would be easy to find a couple of favorites of your own. Cheers to beer and more beer!
One of the most beautiful cities in North America is Vancouver, Canada. I'm always surprised how many people have never visited this amazing city. It's just a couple hundred miles to the north of Seattle! Vancouver, much like Portland, is known for its food and coffee culture. I think Portland may have a bit of an edge when it comes to coffee. When it comes to food though; especially fresh seafood, Vancouver has us beat. I have to have my favorites when I'm in town. On that long list are ramen, sushi and ocean-to-table shellfish!