Posts Tagged ‘ New Jersey ’

Support Your Local Brewery

sylbCraft breweries are popping up around the country like crazy. I love tasting new brews and there never seem to be a shortage of them. Recently I stumbled upon a logo for supporting local breweries., the site behind the logo, has a plethora of great information for everything beer. Anyone can sign up to be a member and receive news and information from the site.

Curious about what craft breweries were in New Jersey, I clicked on the link for my state. There were a ton! I pride myself on being in the know when it comes to the breweries around me, but was surprised by the number I’d never heard of. Several are in the works of being built or growing their business, but there was one that I happened to find at the perfect moment – the opening of the brewery and the creation of their first batch of distributed beer. Cool!

Flounder Brewing Co. is a brand new craft brewery right down the road from me in Central Jersey. Their first batch of beer, Hill Street Honey Ale, is an American Ale brewed with New Jersey harvested honey. I’m super excited to try it and judging from the amount of followers they have on their facebook page, many others are too. One thing I appreciate as a beer enthusiast, aside from a good product, is a well-maintained website and regularly updated social media sites. Flounder Brewing Co. has both. When I posted on their facebook page I received a response within an hour – impressive!

I can’t wait to drive over to tour their brewery and be a part of supporting my local brewsters. 🙂

Weathering the Storm

Today is definitely more a day for hibernating than for being outdoors. With Hurricane Sandy upon the Tri-State area and many schools and businesses closed for today, maybe even tomorrow in many cases, today is a great time to stay safely inside and focus on that list of things you keep meaning to do.

1. Catch up on all those DVRed shows you keep meaning to watch – at least until the power goes out.

2. Paint your nails – let’s face it they are in desperate need of sprucing up.

3. Get a head start with your Christmas list by shopping online – at least until the power goes out.

4. Finish that book you keep meaning to read, but never get around to (yes, I’m talking to you Les Mis).

5. Eat comfort food – a dangerous pastime when stuck indoors, but oh so fun, especially since you ran out to load up on Halloween candy a few days earlier.

6. Organize your digital photos into a photo book through Snapfish or Shutterfly – at least until the power goes out.

7. Master Angry Birds on your newly charged iPad after the power goes out.

8. Finally tackle that stack of magazines – fitness tips from ten years ago are still valid, right?

9. Look at travel sites and books so you can imagine places you could be instead of inside waiting out a hurricane.

10. Sit at your window and laugh at all the suckers walking around outside – at least until your dog barks to go to the bathroom and then you’re that sucker.

Hope everyone is safe and sound during Frankenstorm! 🙂

Garden State

  For some reason New Jersey gets a really bad rap from the rest of the U.S. Not sure how that originated, but I must admit that I definitely have laughed at NJ jokes before. I still think it’s funny that NJ gets mocked, but now I give more of a “hey, NJ really is a great place to live” response.

But one of the things I enjoy most about NJ is that it really is the Garden State. Everywhere I go there are farm stands and fresh “Jersey Fresh” produce. When you’re in NJ you have your pick of any kind of fruit or veggie that strikes your fancy. Most are way better than the shipped in, chemically bland, glossy produce that lines the bins of the local supermarket, so for me it’s like hitting up the candy store and having my pick of whatever flavors I want.

The other day my girlfriend and I stopped at one of our favorite farm stands only to find it closed. Bummed but knowing that there were stands aplenty in the area we drove around until we came to a farm we had passed many times but had never stopped at. (That’s a picture I snapped on the left.) Despite it’s advertisement for produce galore we had never seen anyone working there or any visible produce. But, desperate to find fresh legumes, we drove down the long gravel driveway and parked in front of their barn. Tiny donkeys – including an adorable baby donkey complete with a bedhead – grazed to the left of the barn. When we walked inside the barn our eyes feasted on bins of green peppers and eggplants and onions and corn. Containers of brightly colored tomatoes were stacked on the shelves next to tiny cloves of garlic. Large glass fridges lined one wall and were stocked with fresh jams, tomato sauce, eggs, and greens.

Talk about vegetarian heaven!!!

After we wiped the drool off our chins, we looked around for someone to pay. On an old wooden table stood a jar filled with coins and bills to make change as visitors paid through the honor system. So of course we loaded up with as much as we could carry, paid, and left knowing we had found our Produce Nirvana. 😀

It’s Monday, What Are You Reading?



It’s Monday, What Are You Reading is hosted by Sheila @ Book Journey. Books, books and more books. What are you reading??

Had a marvelous weekend. Great biking, great running. Found a great farm stand just down the street from my house. I’d driven past the multi-tiered sign numerous times, but hadn’t bothered to stop in. Then, after visiting another farm stand and finding it closed, my girlfriend and I decided to pay the other a visit. We drove down the gravel driveway and stopped in front a large barn surrounded by gardens, hanging flowers, and paddocks replete with fat, furry donkeys. Inside the barn, there are big refrigerators stocked with corn, peaches, jam, eggplants, and other produce. Tables overflowing with ripe tomatoes, green peppers, fresh bunches of flowers, and tiny garlic buds flank the fridges. On a small table in front there’s a glass jar to pay via the honor system. Of course we had to have a little of everything – made for some delicious meals! 🙂

Here’s what I’ve been reading:

  X-Men First Class – This graphic novel seemed appropo with the recent movie release of the same name. The illustrations are fresh and lively and make the story read with a quick energy. I’ve already put a hold on Vol 2 at the library! 🙂





  Then Came You by Jennifer Weiner – Weiner’s novels are always highly praised and this one is no different. The story centers around surrogacy and the women who’s lives are changed as a result. I’m really excited about this one!





Devil in the White City by Eric Larson – I started to read the novel form of this touted book a while ago and just couldn’t get into it. I picked up the book on CD hoping for a better outcome. 🙂 The premise of the book – a coldblooded serial killer and the Chicago World’s Fair – have called to me for quite some time. Can’t wait to drive to work tomorrow! 🙂