Dallas has few diversions other than eating, drinking and shopping.....and shopping does not interest us.
So we spend our time hopping from restaurant to restaurant and to every pub that we can find in search of the perfect meal and the perfect beer.

We randomly review restaurants and bars, dishes and beers at whim and give our brutally honest opinions of our findings. And while we concentrate on Dallas, we travel far and wide to sample cuisine from all regions of the country and beyond.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Sharing Beers With American Friends in China

The one thing that you will notice as you travel through China is that beer is not such a popular drink.  You will also notice that when you do find a watering hole the odds of it having a decent selection of beers is quite slim.  So when you do stumble across a bar with some fine brews you tend to set a bit longer to enjoy the bounty that you found.  When we passed by the Piss Bar (I kid you not and am still not sure if the name is intentional or another case of Engrish ( but anyone who places the word piss next to the name Stella deserves my business) in Kowloon we noticed that they had a passable selection of Belgian and German beers to imbibe so we decided to sit a spell.

As we sat enjoying our find we noticed that the table next to us were Americans and that they were drinking shots.  "Why would you wish to scorch you stomach lining with that kerosene when there are so many fine beers on tap"?  We queried the young gents.  "You like those thick, over-powering beers"?  they responded.

Ahhhh, another chance to convert some unbelievers, and in China!  Bonus!  So we convinced the young gentlemen that they should try the Leffe Brune, one of the dandy selections on tap at Piss.  Instant converts.  Win!

Not only were they impressed with the flavor, but they were also quite surprised by the alcohol content.  The 6.5% abv is quite a bit stronger than the watery beers that they had experienced growing up.  Throughout the rest of the evening we enjoyed many other fine beers and had a good old time.
This is not the story, however.  The real story is that of the fine young men that we enjoyed sharing our expertise and swapping stories.  You see these young gentlemen were United States Marines on leave.  Hailing from Tennessee and Georgia, these men, stationed in Okinawa, were trying to relax and forget that they were far from home, missing their families and struggling to understand the Chinese culture.  Their rules of conduct prevented them from getting too wild, but hey, why not get a buzz and laugh a bit? 
The greatest part of travelling is learning about other cultures and sharing stories with people that you are unlikely to ever see again, but who knows, you may make some new friends for life?  Who would have thought that the most interesting people that we would meet on our journey would be Americans?  Their names and personal stories are not for us to share, because people who join the military do so for their own reasons.  An opportunity to go to college using the G.I. Bill?  To get away from a looney ex?  It doesn't matter.  What matters are what these gentlemen represent.  Well mannered, respectful and genuine, these excellent young men represent those who understand their role in American military presence.  They will do what they need to do if, or when, they are called upon.
While I did not choose to serve in the military, I have great respect for those who have.  Gentlemen you have my deepest respect and gratitude and I wish you luck and success in whatever comes next.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Pumpkin Beers

So have you ever tried pumpkin beer?  Sounds gross, right? 

Not so fast Jack (O'Lantern).

If you are big fan of malty beers you will be a fan of pumpkin beers.  Kind of like an Oktoberfest beer, but bigger.

Here are the top ten rated pumpkin beers from Rate Beer.  We recommend that you pick one of these up and not one of the mass market versions (i.e. don't get the Blue Moon Pumpkin, capsce?).

 Midnight Sun T.R.E.A.T. Imperial Chocolate Pumpkin Porter (Oak Aged) [Release date: Mid-October]  3.91  
 Selin's Grove Pumpkin Ale [Release date: October 15th]  3.9  
 Midnight Sun T.R.E.A.T. Imperial Chocolate Pumpkin Porter  3.86  
 Avery Rumpkin  3.8  
 Saint Arnold Pumpkinator Imperial Pumpkin Stout [Release date: October 14th]  3.77  
 Southern Tier Pumking  3.76  
 Cigar City Good Gourd Imperial Pumpkin Ale  3.73  
 Elysian Dark O’ The Moon Pumpkin Stout  3.73  
 Uinta Crooked Line Oak Jacked Imperial Pumpkin  3.71  
 Hangar 24 Local Fields: Gourdgeous [Release date: October 5th]  3.69

Thursday, September 12, 2013


Beginning today and running through Sunday is Grapevine's annual ode to the grape.  I was asked to post on the blog, for the couple of readers that follow along, the information for the festival.  There are dozens of wine bloggers in the area and I freely admit that I am a bit indifferent about wines and so this is not one of those.  "But we have a 'craft beer' tent set up for folks like you",  was the response.  Craft beers.  The term can be quite misleading as that there really is no accepted definition of what it takes to be a craft beer.  So here is the beer list that I requested to allow you to determine what a 'craft beer' is.  My comments follow each beer listed.

"The following craft beers will be at GrapeFest this Year"
- ZiegenBock - (Inbev beer, not craft - Bon)
- Shock Top - (Inbev beer, not craft - Bon)
- Goose IPA - (Inbev beer, not craft - Bon)
- Goose Harvest Ale - (Inbev beer, not craft - Bon)
- Shock Top Pumpkin - (Inbev beer, not craft - Bon)
- Widmer Oktoverfest - (Inbev beer, not craft - Bon)
- Redhook Pumpkin Porter - (Inbev beer, not craft - Bon)
- Kona Pipeline Porter - (Inbev beer, not craft - Bon)
- Franziskaner Hefe-Weisse - (Huge German Brewer, not craft - Bon)
- Spaten Oktoberfest - (Huge German Brewer, not craft- Bon)

There are so many wonderful local brewers that are not being represented at this long running local festival that I can't help but to be disappointed - Bon


Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Untapped Festival - Dallas

Yes, of course I love beer, but what you may not know is that one of my other great passions in life is music. It is not often that we get to mix the two in a non-bar atmosphere so here is your and my chance to do so.  The Paste Untapped Indie Music and Beer Festival is one of the best, if not the best, beer/music festivals in the world, and here we are with the second time to enjoy the mix in the metroplex this year. 

Fort Worth saw the festival pass through in the spring and now it is Dallas' turn to relax and enjoy this weekend at Gilley's with a very strong lineup of indie bands and magnificent brews.  It is a rare opportunity to sample the offerings from your favorite local brewery or venture a little farther afield with a wide variety of national and international suds while listening to a this select line-up of Indie bands like The Givers (one of my personal favorites).  Please stop by the Ommegang/Duvel booth where I will be pouring and say hi.