So no one gave a fuck about getting fat anymore in 2013 and fried chicken finally had its moment in Chicago; a year later than the rest of the country. Blame Questlove, gentrification, everybody listening to their one black friend (real or imaginary aka Miller Light Commercial Questlove), ol' racist ass Paula, or just the rising tide; but everyone was eating the greasy bird this year. Everyone?
Whether it was straight bird or chicken sandwiches me, you, yo momma and yo cousin too
were trying to get some comfort food in your guts. So the editorial board at P&A said: "hey let's get on this mission like Indiana Jones and discuss fried chicken so that our 10 readers can know that we are hip cats
." I just hit you with 4 references from 90's so you know I'm happening dun. So this is the first post in our fried chicken series. This time it's about buying it; next time it's about making it your damn self.
I will not concern you with chicken sandwiches in this post. Been making fried chicken sandwiches since I was 12 and they are pretty hard to screw up (not that people don't). Also we're not talking about wing spots or buffalo wings. That is a whole other category that I refuse to get into. No it's broken down fryers/broilers/roasters that I care about because that's the mark of any decent fowl peddler.
Spring Chickens: New School Chicken Spots
These are spots from the last two years that get all the write-ups, yelp reviews, and hype. I got mixed emotions about this as I do believe there is a gentrification of soul food/comfort food going on. I mean the south will rise again but god damn I didn't think it would be through our guts. I believe that we already have great fried chicken in this city that I wish was more accessible and got more love. I'm not alone in this sentiment but this doesn't mean that I'm angry at the new spots for existing. My health aside getting more access to quality fried chicken is something I will always support it. Furthermore 'fried chicken' as concept is broader than just one style so it's good to see more diversity in the marketplace. So yeah I'll leave the previous kind of teeth gnashing to the true stakeholders.
Honey Butter Fried Chicken
Good and will be great. This elevated southern fried chicken is juicy and flavorful but the skin and crunch is missing something. Sides are better than the main attraction which is a shame for the cost. The chicken is not overpriced; you are paying for high-quality raw ingredients. That doesn't mean you are getting a value. I feel that the whole is lesser than the sum of the parts. Maybe because I went too soon or maybe it was over-hyped by friends; I'll give it one more go in a few weeks.
Not for me. Like drinking there but every time I've been the birds were coming out inconsistently cooked. One piece would be spot on while the other seem fried to hard. On the plus side the bird is juicy but the odd fry batter inconsistency makes it hard to judge the seasoning. Or maybe the shit was just under-seasoned. I found my money better spent on getting drunk than getting fat.
Probably my favorite because they nail the execution. Somewhere in between southern style and asian (light breading) this Bird is fried to order and they consistently have their chicken breast on-point from the juiciness standpoint. Furthermore you can taste the flavors in every bite of bird. Skin/crunch factor, from what seems like corn starch treatment, keeps it simple and nice. Also they got sauces that compliment their they're ish. A BBQ joint that understands all facets of the meat game, just wish they had more complimentary sides for fried chicken as the fries are hit or miss and the others go better with the Q.
Solid fried chicken but not the best option on their menu if you want the poultry. It had consistency problems across dark and light meat. The white meat seemed underseasoned and lil' dry but the thighs and legs were perfect. Basically get grilled chicken instead of fried and you'll be significantly happier as the flavors sing. Bonus their side/appetizers kill.
ol' DIRTY Cockerels:
Favorite "Old" Chicken Spots
This section is strictly to shout at spots I like. Why are there no places on the south side, because if I'm on south side I'm not going there for fried chicken (BBQ or smoked fish only). Harold's is not on this list because to quote Wale: "This here overrated."
I don't fuck with Kentucky Fried Chicken or Browns because I always get lukewarm chicken; which is never in style. Also KFC gave us this....
There are other places that offer fried chicken and do a damn fine job but our intentionally omitted. Big Jones, Slurping Turtle, Feed, Spinzer (when fresh) and Uncle Remus just to name a few but they are not my go to spots for when I get the hunger. Nope this section is for places that stay in rotation. Popeyes
There is always a coupon and sometimes I just need cheap chicken that's aggressively spiced and consistently crunchy. Sometimes I'm a monster that can eat 8 pieces in one sitting. Sometimes I just got to go back to the essence. Mariano's
Simple grocery store chicken works best if you do it like this
Go to the hot bar and ask them when fresh birds are coming out. Get a whole bird (8 piece) for 6.99. Nervously eat half of it in your car as you burn your tongue. Basically be like Fassbender in Shame when it comes to fried chicken and get it whenever and however you can. Just don't let it be caused by some childhood trauma involving your pet bird....Anyway, this stuff also makes some of the best "second day fried chicken." Crisp
Korean Fried Chicken (real KFC) that's butchered oddly but the Seoul Sassy are perfect when you want a different flavor profile. The only chicken I don't mind eating cold.Evanston Chicken Shack
Consistency is king here and I've never gotten a bad bird in damn near a decade of going here. Perfect pepper spice and a solid crust. If I lived 10 minutes from here I would be on my third heart attack by now.Chicken Inn
The lightest and juiciest of fried chickens because it's officially broasted
. Main seasoning seems to be salt and chicken grease. That's fine with me; that's why man invented hot sauce. Joy & James Cafe
Simple Filipino Fried Chicken. Basically this all about the crispy skin that's minimally battered/treated. Goes great with other banana ketchup. Also the value proposition is crazy, I don't want to know how they sell birds that cheap.
So that's it for this leg of P&A's no-depth look at fried chicken. Next time we are gonna hit the books and make fried bird. As Yo Gotti
said "On some real shit, you might have cash. One thing bout it; can't buy swag." Can't talk all this shit about chicken joints and not actually make some.
HEY! Guess what?!
I got a new toy for Christmas. What’s this mean for me and Mrs, Big Whisky? Deliciousness. What does it mean for you? Reading about deliciousness, unless you know me, then odds are you are going to get something tasty out of it.
My steak sous vide game is very much on point at the time of this writing, so I wanted to move onto pork, and I also didn't want to cook anything for 18 hours. I settled on a double cut chop, mostly because it looks awesome.
As I started to do my search on cooking times and temps I ran across this article
on Serious Eats from Kenji's Food Lab serier. I should have known he would have already written about this exact recipe, but I don’t begrudge him, I just know his budget must be bigger than mine.
I settled on 138 °F for about 4 hours and set my new Anova Machine
to work. After that I seared the chop in my big cast iron pan. It came out pretty wonderfully. The main benefit of cooking in this manner is the fact that you can get extremely even cooking. The other main benefit is cooking giant pieces of meat because they look awesome.
Mrs. Big Whiskey was a fan; it’s always good to get bonus points.
So Big Whiskey and I were killing some time this past Saturday... drankin. Talkin. Our evening started off at the Berkshire Room
. I've got to say, I really dug it both for the ambiance and for the cocktails. Now mind you, in our advanced age, we wanted to get out early... plus what's better to do on a Saturday at 5pm? So I can't speak to the true nightlife experience. This was more the dusk/earlybird/AARP experience.
Honestly, it felt like someone took a room in my old highschool, inserted a bar, and made it hip. The waxed tile floors reflected the dim light from old-timey bulbs, mounted in unique, custom chandeliers. Safety glass partitioned the front sitting area from the bar but provided a quiet place to chat, without feeling like a (synergystic) caveman. The sterile floors were offset well by interesting (and comfortable) furniture. Overall, the perfect setting for a couple of dudes to experience some delicious libations.
With some solid drinks on menu and a somewhat telepathic bartender, you can't really steer wrong. On menu, I had a Weston which felt to me like a take on an Old Fashioned... however with the addition of pipe tobacco. Which I failed to taste. But either way it was delicious. The Old Money was very tasty as well. However, the true gem was the Dealer's Choice option where you pick a booze, a glass, and a style and get (pleasantly) surprised by the bartender. With minimal direction, and without me even knowing what I wanted... the jockey of booze delivered on both occasions.
To put a final cap on our evening, we decided to make a stop at the Watershed
in the basement of Pops for Champagne. Before you vomit in your mouth from the idea that two of your favorite bloggers would ever consider walking into such a terrible place as Pops;the downstairs is pretty awesome. I imagine this is how the conversation went:
Hipster 1: (Broodingly) "You know what would be super meta? Hipster 2: (Disengaged) What dude... this better be important, I don't want to have to re-tag all the work I just did on my Instagram post. Hipster 1: (Causally annoyed, but not enough to be uncool) Fuck your Instagram... This is brilliant. We could take a place that cool people want to go, and put it in a place where they don't want to go." Hipster 2: (Engaged, but not enough to be uncool) That's a really great idea dude. Sorry, I didn't mean to call you dude. Hipster 1: (Pissed that he's a dude) That's OK bro. Hipster 2: (Pissed that he's a bro) Want to go spend our parent's money? Hipster 1: (Pissed that he has rich parents) Yes.
So what really capped off the night?
Whiskey and I were sitting with our friend from college. He was confused about his bourbon preferences and was debating between Buffalo Trace (my personal favorite) and Knob Creek. This after mentioning that he really liked Blanton's, but you don't put Blanton's in a mixed drink. I explained to him that they were both owned by Sazarec, were on the same branch of the Whiskey Tree and had similar taste and smell. And more so that I didn't understand how you could claim to love one, and hate the other.
We ordered a shot of each. And to our delight, the waitress came back with a serving of each, straight up with the glasses color coded and the answer sheet of which was which. Challenge Accepted!
Well, we locked in our answers. And it turns out, we don't know our whiskeys as well as we thought. Both were delicious, however both Big Whiskey and I failed to match them up correctly, switching the two.
Feeling defeated, we finished our drinks and called it a night. Key takeaway... the people, and the drinks at Watershed are great, despite hiding under a place that might be the worst thing since meta became a word.
I made something super stupid at work a few months back. It sold out quick but it will never be made again because: a.) I'm not good at convincing people, b.) Working with lazy people and c.) Angry that my vision will get perverted. Basically I made a three layer pork sandwich of grilled, brined, & glazed BBQ pork loin, pulled pork, and thick-cut mustard glazed smoked ham. That is too many damn words. Put it between Texas toast with a mild cheddar and caramelized onions and let it sit on a griddle till it got all types of good. Why did this dish get made?
There wasn't enough enough pork loin for the full pork chop special so instead of letting someone in the kitchen eat it we needed a better solution. The solution was to slice something thinner to get more use out of it. Plus everybody digs a warm sandwich and excessive meat.
Was it good?
Yes but it could have been better. That is always my thought process. Yes it sold, customers dug it and asked if we would do it again; that is good enough to run a profitable business. But it when I do something I want it to be both profitable and constructed with maximum tastiness; this was literally made from scraps.
So what's next?
Nothing... Pretty sure this will never get done again anytime soon so I will just log the processes in my journal with proposed improvements and when it gets time for menu development see it get shot down. By menu development I mean I suggest somethings, a proposed cost that would be profitable, and prep time/ticket time and then it goes somewhere to die.
Yup... If I had more leeway in the pricing I would have put fresh bacon bits in the cheese melt layer; also a lot of other things I don't care to share. One was addition by subtraction and the other was insane calorie build out.
Nope this is just me venting....
By now you have been inundated with websites asking you to vote for the "best of" , "hottest", or "sluttiest" places to eat in 2013. Just so you know the "sluttiest" place to eat is a tie between Big Star and the Arby's at Ogilvey Station. Shit I wish sites like Eater and Thrillist would do a list of best Chicago restaurants that are 8 years or older instead of focusing on the "New New." But I also want a Whatchamacallit served to me by team of beautiful Icelandic folks and we all know that's not happening anytime soon.
No this is not the post where we ask you to nominate us for one of those list. We'd rather you let our ramblings stay in the dankest corners of the internet. This is where I just start listing things related to my year in food for no apparent reason because it's what's seasonably appropriate. Most of these lists are not helpful but hell I just needed to write something like most of the other year-end list published this time because it's demanded of me.
Best Places I've Drank in 2013
Big Whiskey's House
In my shower
Balena for JT$
Half Acre Tap Room
Whole Foods on Kingsbury...Seriously get drunk at Whole Foods
All over Logan Square (The Owl, L&E, Billy Sunday, & The Whistler)
Best Food I've Had This Year
Fried Chicken At Small's
Pinoy Eggs at Pecking Order
Chicken and Waffles at Euclid Hall
That Short Rib Sandwich I Made in September
Hunter Beef Sandwich at Spinzers
Baked Eggs with PQM Sausage, generic beef bacon and day old fried mash potatoes
Italian Beef Sandwich dry/naked from Bari Italian Foods
Anything at Au Cheval
The Burger at Dry Hop Chicago
Canned Corned Beef.... forever
Fruits & Vegetables That Stood Out
Bread and Butter pickles from Decanio Builders Supply Co.
Roasted Street Peppers from a stall in Denver
A bag of assorted peaches I got at a farmer's market in Charlottesville, Virginia...also you're at the wrong site if you think I'll make this any longer
Spice of the Year
Hot Smoked Paprika; not Szechuan Peppercorns like you all expected
Desserts of the Year
Motherfucking Bread Pudding
Tequila Lime Pie At Bang Bang Pie
Fast Food Items of the Year
Gene's & Jude's Hot Dog with fries
Little Caesar's Deep Dish Hot 'n' Ready
Best Booze I've Drank Straight
Weymss The Hive
Mezcal Vago Elote
Angel's Envy Rye
Whatever got me through the weddings I went to this summer.
If I'm drinking cocktails then I'm not going to remember but I had a lot of good one's; probably during random bar crawls in Logan Square.
Barrelhouse Flat probably had some great ones though I don't enjoy drinking there.
Most Memorable Beers
Pipeworks Marilime Law
Half Acre Luther's Boot
New Glarus Berliner Weisse
The Bruery Sour in the Rye
I don't drink it because I don't go on dates or to fancy parties
Places I Still Haven't Been To Because I Won't Roll Solo Dolo
Little Goat Diner
Shit A Lot of Places
Tropical Pepper Co. Scorpion
Pickapeppa Mango Hot Sauce
Marie Sharp's Exotic Sauce
CO-OP Mole Hot Sauce
Kewpie Mayo whipped with additional herbs and spices
Those are my list and that's my year in dining and food. Goodbye premature end of year list and hello best guesses for what goes down in 2014.
Trends for 2014 AKA Shots in the Dark
Biscuits become the new doughnut; I will still eat both
Farmers' names on menus don't go away even if they should
Ramen finally wins its battle against Pho for my heart
Chicago tries to catch up to NYs small scale trendy bakery scene; though we already have great bakeries
Mezcal continues its slow march to relevancy as there is finally enough supplier diversity to allow regular bars to stock more than 2 bottles.
General H.A.M.'s anemia reaches it's breaking point as he continues to stop eating meat and only subsists on vegan food and rare craft beer.
People get sick of drinking punches. Just kidding that shit is going to be relevant at least 2 more years until it gets bottled and turned into a "Skinny Girl" bullshit beverage
Tiger Bread/Dutch Crunch gains in popularity among the sandwich set... yup I just wrote that sentence and I want to punch myself in the face.
Thai Food or Corned Beef cures all my hangovers in 2014
Big Whiskey prepares his move for the suburbs by balling out at every trendy restaurant in the city; he funds this by selling his stolen barrel of Pappy Van Winkle
Synergistic Caveman, our new guy, breaks his paleo diet during a drunken binge in Vegas
where he eats an Italian Sub and then sings about it R. Kelly Style
¿Como estan bitches?! There's a new guy writing for P&A and it's me.
In a sentence: I'm a dude that likes good bevvies and good meats that happens to maintain a fairly strict Paleo diet. While, my esteemed colleague Mr. Whiskey seems to think that my brand of pork consumption is lame, I was brought on board to reach out to a new demographic. Specifically, per Fatbacks, "Single active Lululemon wearing females age 24-35 that are down to clown". I don't know what that last part means.
So for my first article, I plan on delivering real value
unlike the aforementioned shit-bags. In doing so, I'm going to tell you how my cousin and I made some killer paleo-diet-friendly or PDF (fuck off Adobe) pulled pork, fit for Caveman consumption. So here goes:What you'll need: Pork shoulder, a slow cooker, a full bulb of fresh garlic, spices - we used chili powder, cumin, paprika, garlic powder, thyme, oregano, allspice, crushed red pepper, and sea salt. 25 minutes of prep and 10 hours of cook time.
This makes a real solid pre-workout snack or a full blown meal when you prepare some sweet potatoes and veggies of your choice. Also total prep and cleanup takes about 15 minutes and another 10 minutes 10 hours later. Do it right, you can eat for a week with 25 minutes of effort and $30 bucks. This also pairs well with a Whiskey Sour... here's where we get non-PDF (I said fairly strict). Whiskey Sour:Combine your favorite Bourbon (Buffalo Trace is nice) with some lemon juice, a bit of sugar or simple syrup, ice and 1 egg white in a shaker. Shake it like a polaroid picture.
- Get a kick-ass pork shoulder. In our case, we went to the local Whole Foods and picked up a Step 4 pastured shoulder. A bit more expensive - and yes you can taste the difference. Most important part, make sure that shit fits in your slow cooker. boom! #consulted
- Concoct a spice mix. Use whatever you want. Honestly as long as you don't get weird this is pretty hard to screw up. You'll need about a half-cup of dry spice rub at least. If you're using allspice, go light on that in particular. It's potent. Scale up or down depending on the size and quantity of your shoulder(s). Editors note: Shit ton of cinnamon works wonders
- Get your garlic cloves from the bulb, get rid of the skins and cut into slivers. We'll be cutting holes into the shoulder to shove the garlic in there so don't make them too small.
- Place the shoulder with the fat side up and score the fat with a knife. I'd recommend that you do this in the butcher paper that the shoulder came in, it will be used to catch the spice rub in the next step. You'll want a nice checker pattern on the fat. DO NOT remove the fat. If you do you're an idiot and deserve terrible food.
- Coat the entire shoulder with spice mix but be sure to save about 1/5 of the mix for after the pork is finished.
- Using a paring knife, make a few deep holes in the meat and insert the garlic cloves that you've cut up.
- Place that delicious slap of awesome in your slow cooker. If you did this in the butcher paper like you were instructed in step 5, dump all that in the slow cooker with it. If you didn't, congrats you just wasted $5 in spices and you're an idiot.
- Set it for 10 hours and cook it up.
- After that smells up your whole place and 10 hours goes by, remove the shoulder and place in a large mixing bowl. The bone will literally fall right out. Pull apart using forks, fingers, whatever. Spice to your liking with the remaining spice mix.
- SAVE THE JUICE/FAT. It's tempting to just dump that sweet, sweet nectar that's left behind in your slow cooker down the drain. Don't. Put that in a tupperware and use it to cook eggs, veggies, the pork, sweet potatoes, whatever you want.
When you think it's done, shake it more. Pour over a whiskey ball and garnish with an orange peel. Yes this is real and yes I make these at home. It's amazing. And you're consuming a carb and a protein at the same time so your blood sugar will stay fairly flat. Not really, but I like to tell myself that.
Well Lululemon-wearing, active ladies between the age of 24 and 35, I hope you enjoy.
Fatbacks made me feel bad for not posting.
Mrs. Big Whiskey and I celebrated our 1 year wedding anniversary this weekend. It has been a very good year. We decided to do it up and head to the place that we had dinner the night we got engaged; the high end new American restaurant Blackbird.
The minor (and I do mean minor) service issue that annoyed me that night was simple enough that I clearly couldn’t let it go. Several times during the reservation process and confirmation step I was asked if there was any special occasion we were celebrating, I mentioned it was our first wedding anniversary 3 times. They never made mention of it. I wasn’t really expecting anything, but a “happy anniversary” would have gone a long way. Asking that many times, then never acting on it felt strange. But it really didn’t make me enjoy the meal, or company, any less.
The second service error on the night left me with a much worse taste in my mouth. Recently, The Aviary in the west loop has switched to a partial ticket system. Basically it is used as a way to hold your time slot. The lovely MBW and I showed up promptly at 8:25pm for our 8:30pm “ticket”. Our name was checked off a list, and we were told that they would let us know when our table was ready. As 5 minutes progressed into 10, and into 15, and then into a full half hour I was pretty ragey. I can forgive a lot, especially early on into the process, a simple acknowledgement of the problem would have gone a long way, a small extra for our table would have been even better. The fact that The Aviary website is very harsh on diners who arrive late. They specifically instruct diners who arrive after 15min late that they may not be able to serve you. They didn’t even apologize when it was pretty cold outside. The fact that they had our money, and we couldn’t go somewhere else was also frustrating. I should say that I have had some pretty amazing experiences at The Aviary, and The Office, but this was not one of them. We are guests paying a lot of money for a good experience; being kept out in the cold for 30 minutes past a reservation that was already paid for is pretty terrible service.
Might as well fulfill the requirement of this blog and blither about brew. Best bet is beer be the basis of my babbling but lets not forget my imbibing bottles of booze; bonded or otherwise. Whew that was forced intro to an otherwise standard post. I'm going to talk about booze now.
Half Acre fall releases Lager Town, Luther's Boot, Chub Step, and Shrub Tundra: We've hit that perfect gradient of hops to malt and for one brief window you can get them all on tap at the brewery. Lager Town is a nice and hoppy octoberfest-style beer that I would compare to a brisk fall breeze. Think slightly malt forward with a long tail of hops; brace yourself for a sturdy beer, an unbalanced beast that's better for it. Next, Luther's Boot aka usurper to the thrown. For the longest time I held Great Divide's Hoss as a perfect beer to compliment smoked meat. Rye lagers have the necessary backbone to stand up to my aggressive rubs. Luther's Boot can kick it up notch because it basically amps up all the notes including the mouth feel. My only regret is that they won't bottle it for the full BBQ season in spring. Then there is Chub Step, your friendly porter that reinvents nothing but takes you where you need to go; get a nitro poor and get there faster. Finally Shrub Tundra takes up far away from Lager Town into a coffee brown ale wasteland. Why is coffee emphasized in the text? Because damn it you will taste that Dark Matter Roast and believe you could drink this for breakfast every morning. I will do this all next week.
Brewery Vivant Sgt. Peppercorn Rye: Another rye beer only this time with Belgian yeast replacing the aggressive rye/hop duel. Basically there is an undercurrent of pepper spice that complements the rye but in a lighter bodied brew. Might go better with a sweet KC style rib than a typical rye beer as it has a back end spice and sweetness that works.
Kutscher Alt: I can drink a shit ton of this for cheap in my neighborhood. It's like drinking bread pudding with apples; in booze form. Did I mention that most bars in Lincoln Square have this for the same cost as some pumpkin spice drink? I didn't. Well you're welcome.
Paracelsus Zwickl: Simple, drinkable, and good for anyone that wants flavorful session beer. Not all beer needs to be clear. Not everything needs to be new.
Off-Color Troublesome 15ft: A Smoked Wheat Beer that will be refined as they brew more of it. Right now though it a little too light for the style; but I will drink a shit ton of it if given the chance. Maybe it's perfectly light.
Nothing... seriously. It is finally getting cold enough to get into my whiskey stash but I have no notes. Just haven't been drinking booze because, well, because I've been on some other shit...
But I got bottles on deck: George T. Stagg, Yellow Spot, Wemyss, Pappy, etc.
We took the beginning of Fall off for no real reason. Funny thing is Big Whiskey has been cooking up an experimental storm; spherifying random foods and making bomb soups. Also he has to kick it with his righteous dog and his dope wife so he is allowed to be on his "grown man shit." Guess he just doesn't want to share the goodness with you. General H.A.M. is dead... to this website. He was murdered by a bad batch of fair-trade locally-sourced overly hyphenated artisinal quinoa/spelt/kale/seitan meal replacement sponge clusters or whatever bullshit pseudo-Vegans are on. We'll probably see him soon; well a taught ghostly version of the friend we once knew that raves about his perfect GI tract and perfect cuboid stools. Me, I'm just trying to not hate life while: stock-piling whiskeys, drinking moderately heavily (that's a thing), punching inanimate objects, Yeezusing, and caring way too much about a bullshit job I need to leave.
That's what I do; care to much about shit that doesn't matter. I also cook. So that's what we're gonna talk about. Easiest way to do this is just to do it. We've been gone...I'm back. Your absentee father is back and here is what's up; "fat kid projects". This winter I'm fattening everyone else up by making some super convoluted food projects.
Short Rib Poutine
Inspired by The World's Best Ever
, I'm going to make a poutine of "short rib gravy, yukon french fries and fresh cheese curds." The plan is to make the fries in beef tallow using a modified three cooking technique based off The Breslin's
methodology. Then ( will make a super convuloted gravy: braise the short ribs, skim the fat, turn that fat into a roux like gravy base, reduce the braising liquid, and then recombine for a beefy gravy. Finally buy fresh cheese curds. Sounds easy but the I think that the gravy is going to be a monster of tasky as I got to get it thin and flavorful. I make a heavy gravy. I also am making you hungry, so here is a picture of the short rib sandwich I posted earlier
Barrel-Aged Hot SauceS
General H.A.M. is not actually dead. In fact he is the one that sent me three mini oak aging barrels to use for the expresses purposes of making hot sauce. Jokes on him, they are just sitting empty on my dresser next to pair of old Superman underwear. Next week I finish my recipe testing because making small batches of hot sauce is a pain. Haven't perfected shit but I'm tired of the bullshit. So with the lower temps I'm finally comfortable with the thoughts of aging without deal with large fluctuations. Just kidding, Chicago weather makes it so that I don't give a fuck.
Gluten-Free Spelt Cookies
All Types of Bread Pudding
Women love bread pudding. Children love bread pudding. Cool guys love bread pudding. Humanity loves bread pudding. So I'm making bread puddings: Day old Panera bread pudding, donut bread pudding, danish bread pudding, Pretzel bread (so hot right now
) bread pudding, Bahn Mi bread pudding, etc. Basically I'm going to waste a lot of eggs making a sweet and savory bread puddings. I might also make french toast out of bread pudding. Then the Pudding Paddy Wagon can be born and all thebig boy brunch money will go to me.
Smoked Pot Roast
I've had the recipe for two years. It's time.
Anything Else I want to make...
probably Pork Related
That's the plan, only instead of tweeting shit we're actually going to feed content here. Except for ill cheese plates, those are purely for my tweeps. Until these projects are finished though I think of some other observations about the stuff you love, like beer, because their aren't enough shitty beer bloggers in this world telling you to drink something mildly better than what you already like.
My plus one for every wedding is a stack of ones; dance partners for the bartender. I still haven't been to a wedding with a cash bar and at least once I was responsible for picking out what would be served. I guess my "brand" within my circle of friends is knowledgeable, single, and drunk. Oh and the ceremonies were lovely but you could care less about that. Every wedding day brings a strict drinking regimen so that I can be on my level
before all the awkward conversations start and I can ride out until the next day so that my hangover ain't so goddamn skrong.
Below is my official drinking regimen for most receptions honed over three consecutive wedding seasons of being out for dolo. The plan may seem odd but just go with it; the damn thing gets me through all weddings semi-intact. Note that this only applies to the activity of drinking; if you want to know about wedding game talk to our diminutive Italian friend.
So the ceremony is done and the shit was magical. Seriously that shit hits me in chest every time. I'm a pretty even-keeled guy but man there is something about nuptials...bout to tear up right now. Let me get a moment.
So I'm back. There is a good chance that the ceremony and the reception will take place at different venues if your friends are somewhat religious. If they are not just skip to the next section as there is no time for a preamble. However if there is a need for venue change get ready to go where eagles dare; a local bar/restaurant. Every year I go to a wedding where there is a 2-3 hour gap between "I Do's" and "I Do want that mini-sandwich." In that time I'll figure out a way to hit up hole in the wall bar and get a quick drank/snack of something that won't be available at the wedding. This means super cheap beer or an off brand whiskey and if they offer food I'll try to convince them to let me get a grilled cheese sandwich. I do this because I probably didn't eat breakfast and religious ceremonies tend to go long. Got to get a semi-solid base layer for what comes next...
Warm-Up Deux/Bar is Open
Time to get Turnt Up!
Wait this is just the warm up patnah. Don't be so trained-to -go my dude or you will wind up calling it an early night at best and becoming persona non grata among friends and strangers. You may end up in argument in the opposite sexes bathroom while I'm trying to piss and you bump into me accidentally causing an awkward R. Kelly moment...
Anyway the opening drink is critical. If the couple has a signature drink then you are at the right wedding and you are celebrating a proper union. Do not make the first drink the signature wedding cocktail. No the first drink is a time to test the bartender's chops. I pick a three ingredient cocktail because it is quick and allows me figure out:
1. Booze levels
3. Quality of ingredients
I rock a tequila sunrise as my opening move because it's a pink drink that's easy to make, but also you can see how much of tequila gets hidden by everything else. If it's off than I know it's the signature drink and whiskey and coke/ginger/soda all night. If it's on then I know table is open and the bartender I'll be tipping all night.
After this I go with 1-2 more mixed drinks and a beer because I'm trying to get a simple opening buzz that fades in the middle of dinner. You may need more. You might be wasted after that first drink in which case stop reading this site. In either case the opening of reception is just that and opening. Your time is better spent meeting new people, talking about the ceremony with your friends, or planting seeds then waiting in line at the bar. There will be plenty of time to drink. That said before the bar closes/you have to find your seat order two whiskeys neat and place them at your placeholder. Just do it...
Dinner & Speeches
This is why you preloaded your seat during the reception by ordering straight tumblers of booze. There will be only one glass of wine, the bar will be closed (unless it is a buffet or family style dining) and this could be about 30-45 minutes of a wasted buzz if you pre-gamed wrong. There is not much else to say about this just sip slow and prepare to hear the same bridesmaid speech you hear at every wedding. Oh and don't drink all the champagne after the first toast; rookie mistake. Gird your loins and use this as time to get the final base layer because you don't want nothing holding you back.
Dance Floor's Open AKA
The Motherfucking Magic Hour
This why you restarted the buzz mid dinner with strong drinks. If the DJ got jams then all you need to do is maintain that post dinner buzz. Now you are free to do you because the wedding is now just like any bar with a dance floor. Only difference is they might occasionally throw in a slow jam and if you are not cuffed up this is your time to reload. If there are plans for post-wedding revelry then just make sure your competent.. I got nothing else for you.
All this said there are certain weddings where this is my only my only plan because I feel some type of way.
Daddy Out... #RETOX coming soon!