Travel: Asheville Eats (but really drinks)

In case you missed it, we ventured down to Asheville, NC this past Memorial Day weekend and it was full of delicious food and lots of beers (bubbles, too!).  There were a number of breweries downtown that were all walkable and perfect for creating your own mini brewery tour even with your furry friends.   Asheville is also home to some more known breweries like Sierra Nevada and New Belgium, both different but awesome in their own ways!
Food + Beer Asheville - the bee life
Curate: This was our first dinner and true introduction to Asheville, NC and boy was it a fun introduction with lots of tapas!  Curate offered a diverse array of options not only for your food choices, but the way you dine and enjoy your meal.  You could order from cold to hot, but they also had a option where they would bring you options based off your taste preferences.  We enjoyed and casually ordered different dishes, sharing amongst the table – it was a fun and delicious dining experience, be sure to make a reservation ahead of time!
13Food + Beer - Asheville - the bee life
Over Easy Cafe: This cozy spot is definitely worth the wait, and since it’s fairly central downtown there are plenty of places to keep you occupied while you wait (we waited just over an hour!)  The menu is fairly standard for your normal brunch and caters to those who may be a bit more traditional with their picks or a little more adventurous.  All of our dishes were beyond delicious and the mason jar mimosa was the perfect way to kick off another fun day of vacation!
12Food + Beer - Asheville - the bee life
Burial Beer Co. Although we didn’t eat here, we grabbed a drink, as this spot was collectively loved by the group for their tasty brews and low-key atmosphere. I especially loved this place, because while ordering the Donut Stout, I said; “Boy, would I love to eat a donut with this.” And the next thing I know, B is coming out with my beer and a donut hole skewered on top! *mindblown* it was SOOOO perfect, plus another pup friendly place!

New Belgium. This was B’s favorite spot we visited, he loved the atmosphere, the buildings, and of course the beers (it was a little bubble of fun!).  We also had an insider hook up and got a private tour of the facilities, from the employee lounge and indoor slide (which B rode, twice!), to the yeast laboratory, employee beer fridge, to B being able to pull some freshly canned beers right off the line.  It was pretty cool and such an impressive facility.  Oh and you guessed it, dog friendly!
14Food + Beer - Asheville - the bee lifeA few other honorable mentions;
Farm Burger. This was a late night dinner for us, that we took back to the house. With pre-made options to choose from, you can also create your own burger, plus the sesame seed topped buns hit the spot.  Not to mention the staff was super friendly and welcoming!
The Montford. With awesome views of the mountains, this is a perfect spot for a drink and snack.  The tater tots were seriously life changing, the whole group collectively was swooning over these!
Sierra Nevada. This place was a fricken compound – and I mean it was massive, ridiculous and just overall impressive.  With an extensive outdoor area, with a full concert venue (inside and out), corn hole (inside and out), and then their beautifully organized garden this place was stunning.  Whether you dine, grab a flight of beers, or just hang out with some friends and listen to music you’ll enjoy the offerings of this establishment!

If you’re planning your trip to Asheville, definitely get your taste buds and uber ready because you won’t be short of breweries to visit, beers to try and food to eat!  Our afternoon of brewery hopping was perfect because we just had a beer or two at each of the places and it was a nice way to enjoy a lot of different places throughout the day!  Have you been to Asheville recently? What was your favorite spot?

Weekend Recap – CVNP Topography

B and I had the honor of being guests at the Cuyahoga Valley National Park’s Topography event, Saturday night.

Not knowing what to expect, I was quickly blown away by the array of food, all supplied and catered by Spice Kitchen & Bar and the interactive cocktail experience while enjoying the trail system, leading us to an open field of beautifully dressed tables set for 200. A seated dinner was served at 8:15, it started with a salad and then family style dishes for the main meal. The food and service was exceptional.
Topography 2017 - the bee life
We were lucky to be accompanied by a great group of friends for this incredibly unique dining experience. After dinner we were able to sit around camp fires, sipping cocktails and enjoying the perfect summer night. A band played in the distance, while various tents were set up with bars or desserts!

The event supports and raises money for Trails Forever, with helps protect and preserve the CVNP trails.   B and I will definitely be heading back to check out the park in the future to enjoy some hikes.  If you have a chance, keep this event on your radar for next year, especially if you want to enjoy an unforgettable evening at a beautiful, local, national park with the best local cuisine.

Weekend Recap – Now This Is Summer.

The weather this past weekend was quintessential summer; sunshine, cloudless skies with a mix of patio drinks, a summer festival and friends. Friday night was a late one, celebrating a much needed Cavs win in Game 4 of the NBA Finals. But we will leave it at that.

Saturday was spent doing things around the house, and then dinner and drinks on the impressively large patio at Collision Bend Brewery – the latest hot spot in CLE.  With a well known chef, like Zack Bruell behind the business, this place was bumping. We had a great spot outside, but under the awning, perfect views of the river and the warm night.  We ordered a mixture of food to share with the table, but the standouts were the roasted brussels sprouts, oven roasted mixed olives, and the salami and green olive pizza. They had a great selection of beers and cocktails, although I opted for some Rose.  We will definitely be going back to soak in more drinks and the fabulous patio.

Sunday we enjoyed some more local food at the Taste of Lakewood, an annual event that has transformed over the years, and is now a free event to the public offering tasty snacks at affordable prices to sample. We had VIP tickets, which for a toasty sunny day was the perfect way to enjoy the festival feel, without fighting the lines, sore feet and the glaring sun. With VIP we were in a private tent, with plenty of tables and able to order 2-different food vendors, that volunteers would run and cut the lines to collect! Not to mention, 2-drink tickets with our own private bar. Our neighbors joined us, so it was a nice little outing to break up our Sunday afternoon.

Beyond the summer cold, I’ve been fighting off it was a pretty great weekend with lots of sunshine, friends/family, and just enough nap time in between all of that!

Cheers to the first real summer weekend!

Travel: Jackson Hole – Part 2

Since this week is super rough after an amazing trip last week, let the JH recaps continue. This post is all about all the yummy food we ate and the dranks we drank!  There are definitely more places to visit than what we covered this past week, but none the less the spots we picked were pretty tasty too. Enjoy!

Cafe Genevieve
We had seen this spot on an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives, so we definitely wanted to check it out, it did not disappoint. We ended up at this spot twice for brunch and were introduced to deliciousness AKA pig candy. The pig candy was a game changer, especially when paired with a Bloody Mary.  Oh, and you can buy it online too!  Not only was the atmosphere quaint and cute, but the service and staff was exceptional and the food was great. I went with the Biscuits with Canjun Gravy while B had the Snake River Farms Corned Beef Hash and the Cajun Eggs Benedict, all so good.

Snake River Brewery
The beers are great and it’s supporting local business with delicious food too.  We started with the beer sampler, which in and of itself is worth getting because of the presentation.  We then ordered the pretzels and cheese dip, ohmygawd. I ordered the bison burger, because when you’re out west it’s kind of a necessity to get a bison burger. I definitely over indulged but it was the good kind, plus you forget when the atmosphere is fun and tunes are cranking.

The Deck @ Piste
AKA happy hour at nearly 9,000 ft. AKA one of the most stunning happy hours you might ever go too.  The free gondola rides start at 4:30 and from there the 10-minute or so trip takes you up to The Deck.  The drinks are delicious and the views don’t stop it’s a win-win combination for good conversation and a good time – not to mention live music too!  We were able to get this happy hour in twice while we were in town.

Million Dollar Cowboy Bar
The Million Dollar Cowboy Bar is a staple in downtown Jackson.  It’s marquee is a photo stop day or night, but you must be 21 to enter this bar!  It wasn’t until 2-years ago that I finally got to visit the bar.  It’s rustic decor is just what you would expect, and yet the most known item at MDCB is the saddle bar stools. We enjoyed some cocktails and grabbed dinner at the bar, they have a Steakhouse in the basement, but we opted for chicken fingers, burgers and fries. *smiles* It’s definite a must-stop in JH.

A few other spots we visited were the Mangy Moose, E Leaven, Thai Me Up, Smokin’ Iron (awesome patio) and Moo’s Ice Cream. We definitely got to enjoy a lot more food since we stayed in town so we were closer for brunching, lunching or sipping, all of it within walking distance too!

Cheers!