Thursday, December 22, 2011

Drink of the Week: Yerba Mate

This is the drink that got me through finals week. While everyone else was chugging coffee, I needed something with a lot of caffeine to replace the coffee I can't enjoy!

I first came across mate when I was studying abroad in Poland. My roommate was from Argentina and she brought some with her to share with us. If you read the wikipedia page I linked to, you'll see there is a culturally appropriate procedure to drinking mate. Unfortunately, I am totally not following that.

But this was on sale at Whole Foods a couple weeks ago:

It looks a little weird and the longer it sits, the greener it gets (which I found out after leaving half of a cup sitting out all day). Overall, I have been plowing through my bag of mate. The earthy taste is delicious and its a great pick-me up for early morning study sessions. I brought it with me since we will be in Michigan this week, so I can enjoy it every morning and not have to worry about scrounging for some really old tea in someone's cupboards.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Popcorn and Ice-cream

Last night for dinner we ate popcorn and ice-cream.

Ok to tell the truth we had dinner at four o'clock like old people, because I encouraged Aaron to make a super delicious-yet-time-consuming soup as an effort to stop him from watching movies, which was distracting me from studying. By the time the soup was done our apartment smelled so good we couldn't resist eating an early dinner.

Of course, come 8 o'clock I was hungry again, so the resident popcorn popper got to work over the stove and then we topped it off with some pistachio gelato. It reminded me of the times in the summer when my mom let us eat popcorn and ice-cream for dinner. I'm guessing this only happened once, but my childhood memories have distorted it into being a somewhat regular occurrence.

Mom? Oh also, why do I have a stomach ache this morning?

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Old Sugar Distillery

Last night, after a long day at work and a couple hours working on a policy memo, Aaron talked me into heading over to the Old Sugar Distillery. We have seen their stuff at our local liquor store, but never tried any of it. I needed a break from working and its only a couple blocks from our apartment, plus there comes a point where the brain refuses to focus on a computer screen. Another plus is the distillery closes at 10 p.m., so it guarantees an early bedtime for someone facing the last weekend before finals.

We got there just early enough to snag a table away from the door, which was letting in the below zero wind every time it opened. This was our first time visiting, so we weren't sure what to except. We just knew it looked cool from the outside.

Inside, it is a small place surrounded with oak barrels. There is a big bar, some bar tables and a couple picnic tables. There's also a piano and it looked like a group had just finished playing live music when we arrived. Although they don't serve food, you can get your dinner delivered there, which is pretty cool (someone ordered pizza). Oh and no waiters here, you have to go to the bar to order!

Anyway, on to the most important part: the drinks. We tried four drinks from their cocktail menu. It was hard to decide because everything is tempting. We had just finished a greasy cheesy meal though, which meant we were looking for drinks to settle our stomachs... so we avoided the Gringo and the Chai latte, but they were definitely popular among the crowd.

Our first round was The Standard for me (their rum on the rocks with lime) and the Main Street for Aaron (whiskey, bitters, sugar, and ouzo). The first sip of the rum was a little off putting, but eventually it settled down and had a nice sweet aroma. I don't have much to say about the Main Street. I had one taste and didn't like how warm it was and how red it looked.

The next round, I opted for the Honey Cap, which was a lot of lime and sugar muddled with their Honey Liqueur, topped with soda water. The menu warns that it goes down easy, and it did. It was delicious, a little sweet and sour, and refreshing.

Aaron got the Whiskey Sour, which was also really good. Their use of real limes instead of bottled lime juice in each of the drinks was essential.

At this point it was past my bed time of 9:30, so we called it a night but plan on going back after finals are over to test the other drinks.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Some Thanksgiving Pictures

I've been to busy to post anything this week! Sorry, but the end of the semester is quickly approaching (thankfully), so we've been busy. Here are some pictures from Thanksgiving:

Aaron and his second cousin Jack. Well pretty sure he is a second cousin. We aren't sure about all of the family arrangements.
Causing trouble.

Aaron and Ruth.