Sunday Funday (278th new thing).

January 31, 2012 § Leave a comment

Georgia Voters headed to the polls November 8th. I didn’t get the chance to vote (I was too busy finding buried treasure in South Carolina), but one of the items on the ballot was whether, on a city-by-city basis, residents could buy alcohol on Sunday. Before the vote was passed, you couldn’t purchase beer, wine, or liquor on that one day of the week.

The vote passed in several cities around the state, and on November 20th certain cities began to allow Sunday alcohol sales. Atlantans wouldn’t be able to purchase booze until January, but East Point, Suwanee, and Duluth were all open for business. On Day Two Hundred Seventy-Eight I was in Duluth after working a Sunday shift, and decided for the first time ever to purchase some beer in Georgia on the Lord’s Day.

I looked online to find an outlet that would be open and stumbled upon The Best of Brews, a store that sold growlers not two blocks from work. I’ve never purchased beer in a 64 oz glass jug that could be reused to store home brew. It didn’t take much for me to make up my mind.

The most difficult part of the Sunday purchase was deciding which brew to buy. Georgia law does not allow tastings at such an establishment (I asked), so it’s hard to know what you are in the mood for. It’s like you have to buy a six pack before you get a growler to know if you like the beer. I ended up choosing the New Belgium Prickly Passion Saison because the descriptor sounded tasty and it was a limited edition (apparently). Plus it was 8.5%, so I felt like I would be getting my monies’ worth.

That’s another thing about the growler; it is rarely less expensive than the same booze bought in bottles. I went into it thinking it would be a discount vs say, a six pack, but in actuality most times it’s pricier. I guess the growler is more for the draft beer lovers.

Even if filling a growler doesn’t prove to be the most economical option, I’ll still continue doing it, though. There’s just something so retro about taking your empty jug into a store to get refilled. And even if I don’t always buy beer on Sunday, I’m certainly glad that I can. Makes the idea of Sunday afternoon parties much more feasible.

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Cow Got Your Tongue? (277th new thing).

January 31, 2012 § Leave a comment

Patrick and I met up with a few friends for dinner at Holy Taco on Day Two Hundred Seventy-Seven and I knew that my new experience was bound to be, once again, food related. The restaurant’s taco menu includes many proteins I have never even considered tasting (chicken hearts, cow tongue), so I knew I could find something to try.

I chose tongue, purely based on a memory of being an extremely picky child. Years ago I had gone to the downtown Northampton shops with my grandfather. He picked up some lunch meat for dinner, tongue for him and turkey for me. I thought his selection was disgusting. In fact, being the extremely finicky preteen that I was, I wouldn’t even eat my turkey; I swore it had brushed against the cow tongue while the food was being carried home. I could see faint traces of scale-like filaments on my deli meat.

I thought eating tongue could somehow make up for a childhood of eating mostly hot dogs and grilled cheese sandwiches.

Before my meal arrived I decided I would try something else new and selected a fancy tequila to sip on as an appertif. The waitress suggested a medium colored “Dos Manos” tequila and I took her advice. The amber liquid arrived in a small glass,  a wedge of  lime on a toothpick accompanying it.

Not knowing what to expect from a sipping tequila (I’ve barely even taken shots of the liquor), I scrunched up my nose and braced for the worst. It wasn’t the smoothest alcohol I’d ever drank, but I did enjoy the warm glow that expanded down my throat.

When my dinner arrived I kind of just stared at it for a moment, the memory of my grandfather’s scaly meat causing my stomach to churn.Steeling my reserve, I channeled my inner Anthony Bourdain, and took a tepid bite.

It was surprisingly tender. The texture reminded me of stewed pork and the taco garnish complimented the protein nicely. I could see why the tongue was listed at the top of the list on the menu.

I wasn’t bold enough to try the chicken hearts on this outing, but maybe I can taste it next time.

Chocolate Waterfall (276th new thing).

January 30, 2012 § Leave a comment

Golden Corral touts their Chocolate Wonderfall as the Eight Wonder of the World. Although I don’t agree that the fountain is spectacular enough to be in line with the Egyptian pyramids, it was still something I had never tried before. Thus, on Day Two Hundred Seventy-Six, while working on a commercial at the buffet restaurant, I dipped a marshmallow into the moving fondue of chocolate.

I was a little reluctant to try it after I had seen so many children with possible colds run up to the dessert fountain. However, before the restaurant employees cleared it away for the night, I had a change of heart. I sauntered up to the giant glass encased dessert, grabbed my skewer, and selected the marshmallow that looked the most fresh. And I went for it.

The fluffy white marshmallow actually looked quite pretty under the pouring chocolate sauce. I imagined it was in Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory playing the role of Augustus Gloop and my mouth was the giant tube that the fat kid got stuck in.

It tasted like I had dipped a stale marshmallow into a vat of Hershey’s chocolate syrup, but maybe a little sweeter. It wasn’t bad, but I couldn’t get the thought of all those people sticking their own skewers of dessert into the stream of chocolate out of my head.

Perhaps the morning is the best time to dip into the chocolate waterfall.

Burger Yeah (275th new thing).

January 30, 2012 § 2 Comments

From the Big Mac to the Ghetto Burger, I have tried a few of American staples in the past year. On Day Two Hundred Seventy-Five I added Yeah! Burger to that list.

Unlike other gourmet burger joint in my fair city (hello, Farm Burger), the toppings on a Yeah! Burger are the typical beef sandwich variety. On mine I ordered pickles, lettuce, tomato, mayo, mustard, ketchup, bacon, and pimento cheese for a dash of bravado.

The burger came with two patties and I quickly knocked one off its bun shell. I don’t eat a lot of red meat, or burgers really, and frankly I think I may be a single patty girl. The sandwich was a sloppy mess in its recycled cardboard container, especially after I slopped of half the meat.

Over all, the meal was tasty enough. I loved the pickles, which tasted like they were probably brined in-house. But as I made my way through the burger, I kept thinking about Farm Burger, and how much more I enjoyed that competition of Yeah Burger. Thus, I think my favorite burger restaurant in the ATL will remain FB.

However, the roasted brussel sprouts side was scrumptious.

Lights in the Garden (274th new thing).

January 30, 2012 § Leave a comment

Every year around Christmas, the Atlanta Botanical Gardens decorates their grounds with almost one million lights in a month long event called, “Garden Lights, Holiday Nights.” On Day Two Hundred Seventy-Four I visited the Botanical Gardens for the first time to see this holiday spectacle.

Atlanta Botanical Gardens

A Chilhuly in the Garden Leftover

A light show accompanied by festive music

Staying warm in blue

Bokeh

Bear Topiary in the Greenhouse

Under the Canopy Walk

Walking through the lights

Despite the freezing air, I really enjoyed myself. We were able to see an orchid in bloom in the greenhouse night. Apparently it only flowers under the canopy of darkness, and even many employees of the Botanical Gardens have never seen it in full flower.

The whole tour took us about an hour or so, and eventually the chilly temperature proved to be too much. The gardens are beautiful, and I would love to see them again in full bloom, during the day. Maybe after I’m thirty.

Holiday Joy for my Door (273rd new thing).

January 29, 2012 § Leave a comment

I had leftover trimmings from my Christmas Tree adventure. The Lowes employee suggested I take home the evergreen leaves and make a wreath out of them. I took his advice on Day Two Hundred Seventy-Three and channeled my inner Martha Stewart to fashion a holiday decoration.

Ready to Wreath

Speaking of Martha, I found the most basic “how to” on her website. Basically you keep wrapping bundles of leaves or twigs around a wreath base until a circular garden appears. And it was really that easy.

Half way around the wire frame

I think my wreath looked a bit wild, with its longer pieces of Christmas Tree  jutting out at odd angles. But it also gives the garland character. I added a few stolen spray painted pine cones from the fall decorations at work and some purchased fake holly berries.

The most difficult part of creating my ode to Christmas was affixing the ribbon to the back. I ended up jerry-rigging the red fabric into a knot tied around a wire loop. At first the wreath hung crookedly, leaning forward as though trying to leap off the door, but after a few carefully coordinated maneuvers, I managed to somewhat secure the thing in an acceptable manner. I had Patrick help me fasten the ribbon to the top of the door with a pushpin and voila! My very first door wreath.

A scene worthy of a Christmas card

Ford Escape (272nd new thing).

January 29, 2012 § 1 Comment

I started working as a production assistant on another commercial on Day Two Hundred Seventy-Two, this time for Golden Corral. The more often I freelance, the less chance there is of me participating in some awesome new experience (but I’m certainly not complaining). So, lame as it is, I drove a Ford Escape for the first time.

NOT the one I drove (duh)

I picked up the small white SUV in the morning and used it to pick up important out of town people from the airport before taking the commercial’s director and producer to the Golden Corral shooting location in Austell.

It was quite a smooth ride, had nice leather seats, and an excellent sound system. I enjoyed driving it for the day. However, I like my little Honda the best.

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