Friday, June 22, 2007

Anyone ever tried this???

I just stumbled upon this brand of beer doing some random google searching.. has anyone tried it?? Is it good? I have had RedBridge ( before, and I enjoy it, but some variety would be nice. So this Shakparo is brewed by Sprecher Brewery ( and it looks like they also have another gluten free option called Mbege, both made from Sorghum & Millet...

Would love to hear your thoughts! THANKS...

Ok - another thing, I'm having issues trying to post links -- when i put a link, it cuts off whatever is after it - i did a ton of searching & cannot find an answer - any help?

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Too much going on to blog....

Life has been NUTS for me lately -- and I don't think it's going to let up until Fall.

First -- I got a new job!!! Hooray for me. I'm extremely excited to start something new and this is an excellent opportunity for me to really advance my career. I'll be sad to leave my old job, but really cannot wait to start in my new position.

Second - I was away in Europe for a week. An AMAZING vacation -- had a great time. We (me & the boyfriend) started in Prague for a quick visit with friends -- then headed down to southern Italy for 4 days. We went to Capri, Positano & Sorrento. It was GORGEOUS. When I was in college I lived in Florence for 4 months, so I have a soft spot for Italy already, and was very excited to travel south to places I had never been (and to get to speak Italian again)!

Regarding food here -- I must say, I didn't eat breakfast or lunch for 5 of the 7 days I was there. A big part of this was a weird side effect of jet lag where I was just not hungry at all (why, oh why can't that be the case at home?!). And of course, the other problem - most Europeans have bread or pastry for breakfast (esp. on-the-go, same as here) and that was all that was available 90% of the time. So I enjoyed cappuccinos & alot of gelato (aahhh, gelato, i love you...) instead. I also had a small stash of Larabars & some nuts/seeds to nibble on.

Dinners I seemed to get pretty lucky with. I also got to eat A LOT of caprese salad (being in Capri and all) - which was, as you can imagine, SO FREAKING GOOD... ughh, why can't tomatoes, basil, fresh mozz & olive oil taste like that here???

No stomach issues of note, but again - I seem to have a rather high tolerance for gluten and it doesn't affect me as badly as many. When we were in Positano I managed to ask a grocery store owner if they happened to have any "bread without flour" (as my meek translation came out).. and he actually brought me to a package of grissini (bread sticks) that were made from rice! I was quick to purchase along with a to-go package of Nutella & a bottle of wine. Snacking on those later with a glass of wine & overlooking the Amalfi Coast was great - it was just too bad the rice sticks tasted like cardboard. Oh well, can't win 'em all.

While in Sorrento we actually found a card advertising a restaurant that had many gluten free options! But when asking the concierge about this place he said it was "OK" and recommended another spot that was more popular with the locals and he said they had a lot of gluten free options like risotto & plain baked fishes from the region. So we went there & I got the risotto & fish - YUM.

Such a lovely trip -- only slightly depressing that I couldn't eat any of my old favorites. After living there for a period of time and knowing just how good pasta/pastries/pizza really are there -- it was very hard for me. Matt was good though - he saved me one day when we were taking the ferry from Capri - Positano. I said I'd just had enough, how bad would one slice of pizza be? and reached for it with every intention of eating the whole thing -- but he gave me a look that said "Do you really want to do that?" -- and I knew the answer was no.

So -- that was my trip - the rest of my summer will be filled with transitioning to my new job, weddings, bachelor parties, engagement parties & beach weekends....