beer

HK14: Blame it on the Alcohol

This week’s episode offered a genuine surprise to me!  We start off with six men remaining on the blue team and five women on red.  As usual, we start with a team challenge.

Chef Ramsay speaks of how alcohol can enhance dishes and thus charges each team with creating at least one dish using each beer, wine, and liquor.  This is a fun challenge made even more fun by guest judge and bartender, JOHN RATZENBERGER!  My favorite former mailman (Cliff on Cheers!  Oh, also a voice in every Pixar movie.  He’s awesome!) and Marino serve up the alcohol to the chefs and get to taste the results.  Of course, each team will only present one of each so the chefs must chose which to drop.

Nick's donuts drizzled in caramel, Michelle's soufflé, and Meghan's picture-perfect duck.

Nick’s donuts drizzled in caramel, Michelle’s bittersweet soufflé, and Meghan’s picture-perfect duck.

  • Battle Beer is Michelle v. Nick | Michelle’s beer stout soufflé earns (out of 5) 3 from John, 4 from Marino and 4 from Gordon.  Nick’s sweet potato donuts with stout caramel sauce earns 4 from John, 4 from Marino, and 4 from Gordon.
  • Battle Wine is Alison v. Adam | Alison’s ribeye with plum port earns a 3, 4, 3.  Adam’s lamb with port earns the same.
  • Battle Liquor is Meghan v. Josh | Meghan’s pan-seared duck breast with calvados apple bacon gastrique earns 3’s across the board.  Josh’s pork with bourbon mushroom sauce gets a 3 from Marino, but 4’s from John & Gordon sealing a win for blue!

There’s a roller skating reward for the men and a grueling punishment for the women, and before you know it, it’s time for dinner service.  Someone’s not quite ready, as Bret takes a trip to the bathroom… and literally never comes back.  It’s a crass way to go out as we hear sounds of pain from a closed lavatory door.  Turns out Bret has a pre-existing slipped disc which is pinching a nerve.  Chef Ramsay finds him lying on the dorm floors, where he shakes his hand from above and tells him he’s done.  Bret withdraws.  The rest carry on.

Dinner service has some very exciting VIP guests at the chef’s tables– in red, Jaleel White (Urkel!) and in blue, Fred Willard!  Too bad the men have so much trouble with communication.  Between Josh, Randy on fish, and Adam on meat, the gastropub menu for the night gets butchered.  I’ve never seen so much wasted fish from the fish and chips entrée.  The meat and fish station cannot coordinate their times, but when Adam brings up undercooked lamb for the chef’s table… twice, he gets blue kicked out.

Red has a few problems too.  Alison undercooks lamb too, but recovers quickly.  Christine is good and vocal with Meghan in the dining room– she and Milly serving table-side for the night.  Red is able to finish service for blue too.  They win the night, obviously.

Adam and Randy are up for elimination.  Chef Ramsay wants to hear from Josh too.  Ultimately, Adam is eliminated.

I still think Randy had more problems, but I don’t think Adam was a bad choice by any means.  With a double elimination this week, I’m sure no one will be going home next week.  We’ll see, though!

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Links For A New World [08]

snow and shells

Well, it’s been a solid 2 months since I’ve gathered links for you.  February and March were tough here in Boston, alright?

But anyway, links!

  • Majora’s Mask | This is my favorite Legend of Zelda game and one of my favorite games ever.  I didn’t put up enough fanfare about the 3DS release on this blog and I’ve literally been saving this fantastic article since it came out.  Play this game, you guys.  Especially since you’ll be waiting a while for a new one…
  • The Office | It’s been 10 years since the American version of The Office premiered.  Angela Kinsey did an awesome instagram takeover in celebration and I had so many emotions.  I love this show and this history of the Diversity Day episode really highlights what made it special.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer | You must know by now that BtVS is my number one.  My cousin Nick sent me this article entitled Every Argument about Buffy on the Internet from 1998 until Now and I just loved it.  Had to share!
  • Narragansett | I have a lot to say about Rhode Island neighbor of mine– mostly, that I miss it horribly through all this Boston snow!  I voted for Narragansett in Coastal Living’s Happiest Seaside Town contest and you can too!
  • ‘Gansett | Narragansett beer is also on my mind lately.  Summer brews and the delicious Del’s Lemonade Shandy are hitting shelves soon to help us remember that spring is here and summer is around the corner!
  • Game of Thrones | I’m getting so pumped for April TV.  We’ve waited so long for Mad Men, Orphan Black, and Game of Thrones!  Watch the lovely Maisie Williams talk about watching the show with her family and Arya’s sword skills.
  • Grace Helbig | Ah, my spirit animal!  She’ll always be dailygrace to me, but as of next Friday night she’s on all of your TV screens on E!  Here’s Grace on Fallon being perfect.

Hope everyone has a fantastic weekend!

Photo Finish: Spring 2014

IMG_5394

I must say, these last few months have been quite lovely!  You’ll notice my brother, Joey, plays a pivotal role in many of the above photo highlights, which is apt to happen as he’s one of my favorite humans. Since today marks the start of summer, I’m taking a moment now to recognize all the fun things spring brought to me.  Summer, keep the good times coming!

{1} my brother’s Christmas present, WWE Smackdown at TD Bank {2} sunny Mother’s Day in Boston Public Garden {3} dinner in the North End on my brother’s graduation weekend {4} with the Boston College graduate himself at Alumni Stadium! {5} with lifelong friend Stacie, the most beautiful bride, at her wedding reception at Stonehill College {6} Mario Kart 8 was released and I played for hours, unlocking all the characters that day! {7} in the Ocean State enjoying the most Rhode Island shandy where Narragansett beer meets Del’s lemonade {8} Rhode Island again for Father’s Day weekend, having firework fun with Amanda {9} day off Museum of Fine Arts trip

Weekend Recap in Beauty, Shopping, Fitness, and Food

I’ve measured many a weekend in terms of shopping.  I love to go away and come back with more than I left with.  Truthfully, I escaped the city this weekend so I could avoid spending money.  It didn’t work.  I went to the beach house to lay low and get some reading in.  I accomplished both of these things.  I’m currently reading The Weird Sisters and obviously sunburnt my legs doing so on the beach.  Has anyone else read it?  I’m enjoying it quite a bit so far, especially its connection to Shakespeare’s works.

Anyway, back to the weekend.  Whenever I’m away from my natural habitat, dependent as I usually am on public transportation, I try to hit up the stores I can’t get to a normal basis.  When I go home, I hit up Target.  Since I was in Rhode Island, I found a treasure at our local Walmart.

First of all, I had forgotten my iphone charger, and I was able to pick up a lightening to USB cable here, yay!  I also love to browse the make-up section and found Ecotools brushes!  I never find this brand in my local drug stores, so when I saw this 5 brush set for $15, I jumped.  This set includes a flat concealer brush, buffing concealer brush, precision foundation brush, complexion blending brush, and full powder brush.  They’re mini, which makes them very portable.  This should save me from finger painting my face with liquid foundation, yeah?

I've been looking for four out of five of these, so I was psyched to pick up this set!

I’ve been looking for four out of five of these, so I was psyched to pick up this set!

With my make-up collection ever-expanding, my travel make-up bag doesn’t do the trick.  This is the reason I forgot eyeshadow the weekend of Stacie’s wedding… I simply can’t fit it in my current make-up bag!  I have the Vera Bradley medium cosmetic bag, and I needed to upgrade to the large.  Luckily, there’s an adorable store nearby the beach house with tons of Vera Bradley.  I found a large cosmetic bag in the pattern Lola.  I love it!  I can fit a whole shadow palette in here, and my hair donut too!

Lola is the newest pattern in my collection.  I tend to love browns.  My smaller cosmetic case is Mocha Rouge!

Lola is the newest pattern in my collection. I tend to love browns. My smaller cosmetic case and my iPad case are in Mocha Rouge, and my travel duffle is Java Blue.

This should make packing for next weekend easier!  I failed at the whole not-spending-money thing, but I succeeded in another weekend goal: getting my butt back into running!  It had literally been months since I ran, but I brought my sneakers and some running clothes just for the occasion.  It was rough, but I ran .8 miles, and I’m happy about it.  I also did some biking.  I literally hadn’t been on a bike in years.  The last time I remember going on a bike ride was in ninth grade… so at least 10 years ago?  Eeesh.  Adding a 3.7 mile bike ride to the run made me feel a lot better about myself.  Hopefully I can accomplish even more next weekend!

Finally, I did get a couple great meals in!  It was nice to taste my mom’s home cooking on Friday night, and Rhode Island style calamari on Saturday.  Fried calamari with banana peppers and black olives is the perfect summer light dinner.  To go along with it, I jumped at the opportunity to try Narragansett’s Shandy made with Dell’s Lemonade!  Oh my gosh, it was absolutely delicious!

Two of my summer favorites together!  This shandy is lemony and refreshing.

Two of my summer favorites together! This shandy is lemony and refreshing.

Did you get up to anything fun this weekend?

Netflix Crawl

Boston is big on St. Patrick’s Day.  I’m sure there will be bar crawls a-plenty this weekend in celebration. Nicole is not big on St. Patrick’s Day.  A bar crawl would not be my thing either.  I guess the idea is that you have one beer and each bar, then move on to the next.  In honor of my weekend plans, I’ve made a fictional pub crawl, via Netflix!

Cheers

IMG_5021What better place to start your night than where everybody knows your name!  The crowd at this Boston bar can definitely be festive, but never seems rowdy.  Have your first beer here kicking back with Norm and the gang, and you can be on your way before Cliff gives you too many “little known facts.”

The Drunken Clam

IMG_5012We’re moving geographically now to Quahog, Rhode Island, which is fictional, but Rhode Island is so small that it really doesn’t matter where in state it’s located.  You can get things going a little more here, pounding beer number two back with Peter Griffin and friends.  I mean, that Family Guy can drink.  We’ve seen him drunk enough to assume so, anyway.

MacLaren’s

IMG_5019We’re in Manhattan now!  This bar from “How I Met Your Mother” has no shortage of attractive and gullible ladies, so make some friends now that you’re on your third.  If you’re not having much luck, maybe Barney can give you an assist.  Haaaave you met Ted?  There’s also food here if you’re feeling a bit peckish, which I always am.

Paddy’s Pub

IMG_5023I’m guessing you’re feeling it now, or at least have a good buzz going.  If you’re not drunk, someone here is bound to be.  Here we are in Philadelphia at an Irish bar, so there should be a lot of holiday spirit.  Drink down your fourth beer with “the gang” of Always Sunny.  This is really the kind of place you could spend your whole holiday binge-drinking, but remember that’s not the goal of the crawl.

Snakehole Lounge

IMG_5024It’s time to get wild in Pawnee, Indiana at the world’s sickest nightclub.  According to some rough google-ing, Pawnee is somewhere in Southern Indiana, between Columbus and Louisville, KY.  Avoid the snakejuice and have a fifth beer with the Parks & Rec department.  Things could get weird here, you guys.

The Bronze

IMG_5020Apparently the middle of this country doesn’t have much going for it, ‘cause we’re on the west coast now!  Here in Sunnydale, CA you can get your dance on at The Bronze.  If you’re not quite 21, no worries!  And if it happens to be 1999, you can catch Dingoes Ate My Baby playing some tunes.  Although this is south of our final location, I didn’t want to end the night here because of all the vampire attacks nearby.  If this isn’t place isn’t your thing, you could instead pick up your sixth beer at the bar at UC Sunnydale, but of course, you risk turning into a caveman.

P3

IMG_5022Wind down and enjoy the music and your final drink of the night at P3.  This San Francisco night spot may have its share of demonic activity as well, but I figure anything safer than Sunnydale.  I’m sure Piper and the power of three will be there if something bad does go down.  Some pretty sweet bands played here, so I think it’s a great way to end the night.

You have now covered 3,364 miles without leaving your couch!

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click through to see how weird I am for putting so much thought into this!

If you are going out this weekend in celebration, have fun and be safe!

If you’re more of a non-observant person like me, you can watch all of these shows on Netflix!

| Cheers | Family Guy | How I Met Your Mother | It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia | Parks and Rec | Buffy the Vampire Slayer | Charmed |