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Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Kaptain Jimmy’s Restaurant & Distillery (Agawam, MA)

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For Labor Day M and I decided to spend our time out in Western Massachusetts. One of his friends lives out that way and was in the process of moving down south. So we decided to visit before she leaves... and possibly get a sink for the kitchen.

We didn't get the sink. But we did take her out for a late lunch. 

If you are planning on visiting Six Flags New England in the near future (Fright Fest anyone?) you may want to check this place out for some post coaster dining. It's just a couple of miles away from the park, and traffic permitting shouldn't take you more than five minutes to get there. There was no traffic at all when we were there... shocking since it was the last day of freedom before the kiddies had to go back to school. I could hear the screams from the riders, but no slow crawl of traffic. Go figure.

Best way to explain how to get there - on Main Street there's that pizza/ice cream joint just outside the park - that's South Street and you turn there. Take that down until you hit Suffield Street (Rt. 75) and hang a right. Take that down a ways and the restaurant will be on your left. 

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I may be getting the facts wrong here, but the restaurant is owned by the same people who own Opa Opa Steakhouse and Brewmaster's Tavern. And like Brewmaster's, they make their own liquor on site. Their website says they make "vodka, rum, gin, whiskey, and ouzo." Our waitress gave us samples of their vodka which went down very smooth. I don't know really how you judge liquors, but that was easy to drink straight. I ordered a couple of Bloody Mary's with their vodka - not bad. For three bucks more you can add a couple of shrimp with your drink. 

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After we gave our food orders our waitress brought over some bread to nibble on. You can't really tell in the picture, but there is this thick syrupy stuff on it. I must have made a face because the waitress explained it was honey or maple syrup they drizzle on their breads and served with butter whipped with maple syrup. Whatever it was it was devoured quickly. I really liked the butter and wouldn't mind having some at home. Maybe not to go with my bread, but definitely waffles.

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Just a quick shot of the bar side of the restaurant. Plenty of bar space... plenty of taps. M was pretty impressed with their offerings. Along with the Opa Opa beers they had beers that we normally don't see out here. The other side of the restaurant (which I only saw briefly) was just a dining area. I guess they were aiming for a classy lounge style - and don't get me wrong, it is very nice in there - but with a splash of pirate. Behind the bar it looks like the masts of a boat; the servers clad in red and black pirate-esque fashion; and the picture on the outside of the building is Captain Jack Sparrow... sort of. 

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Aside from their Monday burger special (any of their burgers single patty with a pint of beer for $5) Jimmy's had a ten dollar surf and turf meal. I got the 8 oz. bistro steak with calamari drizzled in a malt vinegar aioli. Vegetable of the day and garlic mashed potatoes. I thought the aioli would be weird, but it was good. But then again, the British eat their fries with malt vinegar... so it isn't really a stretch they would use it on other fried things. 

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You take M to a pirate cove and he gets nachos ($8.99). Demands them. It's a safe vegetarian option. The chili that normally comes with it is not vegetarian, and he was about to ask for it without but his friend and I convinced him to just ask for it on the side so we could have it. M thought it was okay, but would have liked more toppings. The bottom of the bowl was just chips and he ended up not eating them. So better layering or offer a vegetarian chili.

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M's friend was planning on just ordering a side of mac & cheese ($5.95) but chicken mac & cheese was... maybe a buck more so she ordered that and asked for the chicken on the side. So M could have some of the mac. I nibbled on some, and she was right in saying it was both very rich and very good. Maybe too rich. My lactose sensitive stomach was unhappy with just one noodle. But I don't regret it... I'll just bring lactose defender next time we go.

Monday, September 01, 2014

Hoppy Labor Day



I hope you enjoyed your day off. I know I did, but I somehow managed to injure myself. Not sure how it happened, but it's making tonights project a little difficult.

And what is that project? Brewing beer. Yes, M and I are at it again... and hopefully we don't screw it up. M's trip out to Michigan for the annual Homebrew Festival and hanging out with Brian Wiggs from Dark Horse brewery may have been the catalyst for his wanting to break out the kettle, but I know the hop picking for Saranac is what did it for me. That was last week and I still need to write about it.

And I am pretty sure I will at some point. I don't have to point out the obvious, but I haven't been writing much. Oh sure, I posted some crossfit workouts (which I stopped doing but may start up again)... but I just wasn't motivated. No spark... nada. But this month let's see. Maybe I can get things started again. I would think so, since I have some interesting food related things about to start. On Wednesday. 

So you'll have to wait until then. 



Back to the beer. My sister purchased some hops and yeast for M earlier in the year and we are finally breaking into the stash. We acquired some fresh hops recently and M is just about ready to "wet hop" them. Which is what you call the addition of fresh hops. Why they don't just call it "fresh hopping," I don't know. It would be understood. But I am new to the brewing thing. Maybe I'll buy a book. Or if SCCC was cool, they would offer a beer making class... or classes. There is that one school in the area that will, and the CIA is opening a brewery. Gotta jump on while it's still hot... right?

Monday, August 04, 2014

Tomatoes Everywhere!!!


I stopped by the garden tonight to round up some veggies. Pretty sure I got five pounds of tomatoes, and there are plenty where they came from. I'm pretty sure these were the Early Girl (or Boy... still early) and Celebrity. Glad I went with those and not the Romas or San Marzano.

WOOHOO!!! My green thumb is alive and kicking.

I also got a bunch of celery and handfuls of kale and chard. I need to do better on using all these vegetables. Or at least harvest more often and give them away. 

So my fellow gardeners, what have you been picking from your veggie patch?

Monday, July 14, 2014

Monday Workout

WOD:
Strength:
Snatch - build to a heavy max set of 
1 High Hang Snatch + 1 Full Snatch (power or squat)
*15 Minute Time Cap

For time:
30-20-10
Goblet Squat
KB Swing
Push-up

POST WOD:
Stretch/Foam Roll

Comments:

55 lbs for strength, 7:23 for time

I started with the 35 pound bar but ended up dropping down to 30. After a couple runs without weights, I threw on 30. I've lifted this weight before, but today wasn't my day. It wasn't so much my shoulder... just too much for today. Coach had me throw on 5s and work on proper form. Slowly worked up to 55. I'll have to go in on a Saturday and work on this.

Rest of the workout... not bad, but my arms were like jello afterwards. But hey... I'm going to have awesome arms just in time for the... fall.


Monday, July 07, 2014

Monday Workout

"Helen"
3 Rounds for Time
400 Meter Run
21 Kettlebell Swings
12 Pull-ups
Post WOD:
In teams of 2 or 3, row 2000 meters. While one team member works, the others do a plank hold.
Comments
Result - 12:02
I think I would have done better if it wasn't so muggy. It was stifling outside... Even worse inside. I thought I drank enough water during the day, but by workout time I was having headaches. A guy from my Elements class was just finishing his workout. "It's all cardio," he said. When I mentioned how hot is was inside, he replied, "it gets worse when you come back in for the run."
Oy.
As for the running. I didn't like it before, and I certainly don't like it anymore now. Sure, I'd force myself to go for "runs" to get ready for 5k's, but that was it. I wasn't doing weights. There were a couple flashes of lightning, so definitely hell no to running. The other options were not any better - 50 double unders; 500 meter row; and I think 24" box jump overs. I picked rowing, which I thought would be the easiest of the options.
Yeah, no. Rowing lasted one round. I sucked it up and ran the rest. The rain by that point was pretty light and slightly refreshing. Used a 25lb kettlebell and for the most part had no problems there, but I do need to work on my form. Pull-ups I used the green and blue bands, and no problems there.
Post WOD. Rowing. Another reason why I stopped rowing at round one. 2000 meters, split between three people. Each stint was about 250 meters, while the rest of the team had to do planks. Not bad, but I need to work more on it.