What’s In Your St. Patrick’s Day Coffee?

With America’s favorite Irish holiday right around the corner, it’s time to consider what wonderful additive will go with this year’s St. Patrick’s Day brew (coffee).

  
Irish Whisky is a tried and true spike to your morning. There is a reason after all it is called “Irish Coffee”.

Creme de Menthe in your coffee is for those who add multiple sugar packets and need that semblance of “let’s drink green things” for the occasion. Think of it this way … Do you channel your inner Ross Geller?  

 
Not into mint or whiskey? Don’t let your friends tip them back without you over breakfast. Here are other ways to add some pizzazz to your coffee:

Amaretto will give you a nutty flavor for those who like their Hazelnut flavored coffees from Starbucks.  Caramel Vodka would suffice for those that like the sweeter spectrum. Of course both of these could also be topped with a whipped cream topping so you really get the coffee shop feel. Salted Caramel would also fit the bill. Lastly, chocolate liquers like Godiva would provide the most dessert-like experience of them all.

It would be a fun experiment to try what I call the “breakfast liquors” like the Van Gogh’s PB&J flavor, the Glazed Donut flavor from Mama Walkers, BAKON vodka, or Waffle flavored Georgi vodka. Probably wouldn’t want more than 1. Those Flavors don’t mix with typical bar mixers, so why not look to have breakfast in a cup and pair them directly with the coffee! 

Sip N Spin

Sip ‘n Spin, a wine exchange workout

Club CycleIn the recent couple months I’ve finally found a spinning studio that I enjoy in the Pittsburgh area, Club Cycle in Dormont.  Club Cycle is a locally owned business where spinning and club music collide.  Live DJs spin music during a 45 or 60 minute cardio workout.

On Tuesday, June 3, 2014 at 5:45 p.m. Club Cycle will be hosting its second Sip ‘n Spin session.  This class is similar to our Pittsburgh TasteBuds Wine Exchanges, but instead of eating along with an exchange of wine, you are burning calories. Newbies can enjoy their first class for only $10 if they sign-up online.

Sip N SpinSeating is limited to 20 people, but the registration system does keep track of a waiting list, so don’t hesitate to join it!  Bring a bottle of wine valued around $15 and come exchange with the funnest spinning group in Pittsburgh.

Fingers crossed that DJ Kurve is the DJ because not only does he mix the music live for the class, but there are also videos to help distract the fact that you are working out.

 

Mark your calendars: Pittsburgh Best Restaurant Party 2014 on Monday June 2

Want to attend one of the premier events in the Pittsburgh Restaurant industry for half off? Now you can get in for half off!  Get a ticket for only $75 – that’s 50% off!  – available for a limited time through Groupon.

Pittsburgh Magazine hosts a “Pittsburgh Best Restaurant” Party on the first Monday in June each year to honor the 50 top restaurants as voted by Pittsburgh readers.

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Stoke's Grill Beer List

Stoke’s Grill adds bar, no longer BYOB

Stokes Grill Beer List
Stoke’s Grill Beer & Wine List

It is with a heavy heart that I report Stoke’s Grill has expanded to add a bar and liquor license to their business. Diners who attempt to bring-your-own-bottle (BYOB) will likely not be allowed to open it. Pictured above is a beer list from a recent visit. As you can see, those who enjoyed pairing wine with their Stoke’s plates will be disappointed at the lack of wine selection. The house wines (Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay) are not at the caliber many people opt for when selecting their own bottles.  For beer drinkers, their beer selection is reasonable.

Stoke’s Grill had formerly been known as one of our best kept secrets.  While the food menu has not yet changed, the overall experience will never be the same.  Stoke’s had been on a list of wine exchange venue possibilities for their consistent quality, however the time has come to take them off the list.

Christmas Eve Cioppino 2012

P(Gh)osts of Christmas Pasts

Christmas Eve Cioppino 2012As I searched the Pittsburgh TasteBuds blog history today for the recipe that I used for our traditional “Feast of Seven Fishes” Cioppino that TasteBudA and I have adopted as our Christmas Eve tradition.  The only remnant was The Making of a Christmas Eve Dinner Tradition. I’m puzzled. I have taken pictures of our Cioppino each and every year.  Have I been slacking that much?  Apparently, yes.

Each year I think I’ve gone through the same motions: Find recipe.  CHECK! Select 7 fishes. CHECK!  Combine and cook. CHECK!  Take a photo. CHECK!  Post about it.  Oops.

This year will mark the 4th year that we will have made our Cioppino, but apparently we never really blogged about our experience making it.  As I go back through the timewarp that is my photos folder, I share with you what little I found today.

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Reaching beyond Pittsburgh humbles me

Pittsburgh Restaurant Week has become a great passion of mine.  As a food blogger, I always wanted to be in the business of sharing all of Pittsburgh’s great restaurants with my friends.  That circle of “friends” grew further than I could have imagined when I started Pittsburgh Restaurant Week and had the first celebration in 2012.  Just today I had the pleasure of speaking with a restaurant week organizer from another city.  She belongs to a large organization where Pittsburgh Restaurant Week is just one of many things they do.

I want to share that I am humbled by the way in which not only Pittsburgh has embraced the program that I’ve put my time in to grow and foster, but further humbled to hear she has been monitoring the Pittsburgh Restaurant Week program and looks to use Pittsburgh as a model to improve her own celebration.

Anyone who works with me on Pittsburgh Restaurant Week knows how much effort I put in and that I’m always trying to make thoughtful decisions to further the program’s success.  With that, if you have any ideas on what I can do to improve PRW, never hesitate to send them along.  You can think of your idea not only helping your local community, but helping restaurants weeks across the nation.  Just one idea can go a long way.

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