As I mentioned ever so briefly in my last post, I had a pretty good first day at Porter Novelli. Lunch definitely didn't hurt, either.
A couple of colleagues invited me out for lunch. They of course had to twist this amateur foodie's arm to get a "yes." Mostly unfamiliar with the area's culinary geography, I left our dining destination to them. Famished and none too picky, we made our way over to The Whiskey Priest, an Irish restaurant and bar featuring upscale gastro pub fare. To cut to the end of this story, we all left very full, and equally happy. But what good is an ending without a story?
While Whiskey Priest offers over 30 draft beers and even more whiskeys (can't imagine why . . . ), my lunch dates and I limited ourselves to water. After all, it was 1.00 P.M. on a Monday. Although, those taps did look tempting, and I'm sure I'll return after business hours soon. But I digress.
We all ordered burgers. I (and one of my colleagues) had the blarney burger: grilled Angus beef on an organic sesame brioche with Blarney cheese, Irish bacon and roasted garlic mayonnaise. Man, talk about "just greasy enough to be freaking delicious." Irish bacon and Blarney cheese are foreign to me, which just make them more interesting. And, to top it all off, the fries were pretty tasty, too.
The third member of our party ordered a veggie burger (black bean Chipotle on organic sesame brioche, roasted peppers and provolone), and I can't lie: as a borderline carnivore, even I thought it looked pretty palatable. Perhaps one day I'll try it myself. Highly unlikely, but not impossible.
Final verdict: I'll be back. Most definitely to try out those taps, but probably for lunch, too.
Dark Side of the Moon, Pink Floyd
August and Everything After, Counting Crows
Today I learned that one must not wear one's hair down whilst crossing a large bridge if one expects one's hair to last the day without looking like a bird's nest.
Oh, and my agency rocks.
Not too long ago, my parents and I had dinner at Morton's The Steakhouse in Boston's Seaport. While the meals were delicious, there are much more important items to discuss.
Like two of the greatest culinary gifts to mankind, for instance. On July 21st, from 6.00 to 7.30 P.M., that very steakhouse will be hosting "Hoppy Hour," a marriage of fine cheeses to Dogfish Head beers. Can you say "Christmas in July"?
Admittedly I don't think I would have paired the two on my own. Both beer and cheese are capable of ridiculous orchestras of flavour, which could result in epic clashes of taste. On the other hand, if a pro is going to put them together for me, then yes, I'm sure it's going to be brilliant.
For $45.00 (including tax and gratuity), one will not only experience glorious beer and cheese pairings, but also a variety of Morton's hors o'doeuvres: tuna tartare canapes and petite lamb chops with brie, for instance. In addition, our hosts will be doing something nice (on top of the feeding us delicious food and beer bit): for every ticket sold, Morton's will donate $5.00 to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Beer, cheese, apps and a good deed. What are you waiting for?
"Blue Eyes," Timmy Curran
"Wake For Young Souls," Third Eye Blind
"Winding Road," Bonnie Somerville
"So Long Sweet Misery," Brett Dennen
Tomorrow, I start another - and hopefully my last - internship. I'm cautiously optimistic: remember that strangely enjoyable interview I mentioned not too long ago? It turns out that they really enjoyed it, too.
It's a little strange to be starting another internship when I've been out of school for over a year, but I'm going in with a positive attitude. While it will be one heckuva learning experience (and we can never stop learning, right?), both parties also understand that this lady is not going back to a college campus at the end of the summer. Think test drive. First impressions are telling, but not necessarily guarantees. I'm the 16-year-old with the new driver's permit. They're . . . hopefully not the Toyota.
That said, I couldn't be more thrilled about my upcoming journey. Wish me luck!
"Dreaming of You," The Coral
"Sex on Fire," Kings of Leon
"Complicated," Robin Thicke
Things I learned at the American Craft Beer Fest on Saturday:
If Dad only drinks Sam Adams Boston Lager and Oktoberfest, don't bring him.
Don't bring Mom.
That said, the event itself was pretty awesome. Very well organised (with behaved attendees, to boot), and tons of delicious beer - er, I thought, at least. Will I go next year? Probably. Will I mention it to my parents? Probably not.
If your dad likes beer, bring him to Boston's American Craft Beer Fest! 400 beers. 86 brewers. I don't see any down sides, here.
There's one more session tonight from 6.00 to 9.30 P.M. at the Seaport World Trade Center. Tickets are $40.00, and include 2oz. tastings of all 400 beers along with your crucial tasting cup.
I've never attended this event, and I'm not sure why (probably due to my own ignorance). It should be a good time, though, and I'll blog as much as I can remember after the fact. See you there!
"When I Get You Alone," Thicke
Last week, I had a job interview. And enjoyed it.
. . . Right?
How on earth does that work out? Aren't interviews supposed to cut into the depths of your soul to expose your every weakness and leave you wondering why you should be considered for any kind of employment at all? I don't get it. It wasn't even a small-scale place. This company is global, and yet I wasn't quaking in my Nine Wests.
Maybe it's a sign that we're a perfect fit. But still, an enjoyable interview?? My mind is blown.
Only By the Night, Kings of Leon
I say "almost" because I don't think books are dying. There is something rewarding that accompanies possessing a collection of books - as convenient as the Kindle or iPad may be. Print newspapers, however (see image text), are a different story. How many people collect those (that said, I'm sure there's a cult of newspaper-hoarders lurking out there somewhere)?
On May 26th (I know, old news, but I've been busy), The New York Times Bits Blog posted about a pretty nifty new business venture: VillageVines, a dining site that allows foodies to take advantage off off-peak dining times to enjoy fine cuisine at a discounted rate.
Following the suit of sites that allow members to purchase overstocked luxury products and services through private limited-time sales (a la Gilt Groupe, for instance), VillageVines extends a similar offer to its members. Beginning in New York, subscribers receive invitations to make reservations at high-end restaurants, usually between Sunday and Thursday. After securing the reservation with a $10 deposit, the party receives a hefty discount - typically 30% - on the entire tab as a reward for booking a meal during the week.
Hello, win-win. Not only do foodies have yet another means of justifying dining out, but the restaurants have a better chance of filling tables. The hospitality industry is far more time-sensitive than retail. If a department store doesn't sell a pair of shoes on Monday, it can still profit by selling that pair on Tuesday. If a restaurant doesn't book a table at 7.00 P.M. on Monday, it can't make up for it at 8.30 P.M. on Monday, never mind at 7.00 P.M. on Tuesday. As a result, restaurants need to do everything they can to keep their tables full all night, every night. VillageVines, assuming it takes off (which I'm sure it will), will be an excellent asset to the industry.
. . . Now if only it was to add some of our delicious Boston restaurants.
I was going through my freezer in search of meals for the upcoming week when I unearthed a pound and a half of ground beef. While I have yet to cook a bad dish, I'm no culinary mistress and couldn't think of any use for the meat outside of meatloaf (ew), burritos (meh) and hamburgers (just didn't feel like it). At the recommendation of a friend who is a culinary master, I directed my browser to Epicurious.com, a recipe site that allows you to search for recipes based on ingredients and/or various categories . . . such as "Quick and Easy." Bing-0.
Search: ground beef + quick and easy. Dumplings . . . meatloaf . . . burgers . . . taco salad . . . meatloaf . . . meatloaf . . . burgers . . . burgers . . . burgers . . . meatloaf . . . This subtle pattern continued for a couple pages until I stumbled upon "Quick Ragù Bolognese."
This seemed perfect. Unfortunately, however, I was under the impression that "quick and easy" constituted "30 minutes or fewer." Such was not the case, and it took me about an hour to get dinner started and finished. On the other hand, it was my first time on the recipe, and it wasn't bad (but I do have some additions in mind for next time). Moral of story: allow more time.