Archive for April 2014

Kentucky Derby Museum at Churchill Downs

Since taking the time to seriously considering the items on my bucket list, attending the Kentucky Derby has always been present. While Keith was off tasting more bourbon, I took the opportunity to venture over to Louisville and explore the Kentucky Derby Museum along with Churchill Downs.

The grounds were buzzing as preparation was underway for festivities this week leading up to Saturday's big event. Taking in the museum and walking down the tunnel to the track only confirmed my desire to make it out for official race soon. 

What's on your bucket list? Have you attended the Kentucky Derby or other Triple Crown Race?

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Tour of Buffalo Trace Distillery

I joined Keith on his yearly pilgrimage to bourbon country, aka Kentucky, this year. Bourbon country sure is gorgeous. Keith tried to explain how pretty Buffalo Trace was last year, but I didn't really believe him. I guess I owe him an apology because it might be the most scenic of all the distilleries we've visited.

We were fortunate enough to go on a special "best of" Buffalo Trace tour. Their operations are pretty impressive compared to the other distillery tours like Marker's Mark and Woodford Reserve. Currently, Buffalo Trace has over 15 labels all of which are produced at their Frankfort, Kentucky location.* I won't bore you with the step by step details, but here are some of the highlights. 

There was some concern that this might be a one and done and I wouldn't want to join Keith on the yearly trip. I don't foresee that being the case. However, I'm not sure I need to visit the distilleries each year. I'd much prefer to simply drink the end result without seeing how it's made. 

* This does not include their Bowman operations in Virginia. 

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Saturday Afternoon at the National Arboretum

Just when we think we've seen all the nation's capitol has to offer, we realize we've only scratched the surface. Keith's parents visited over the weekend. Having explored the usual sites, we ventured out to see the National Arboretum. Who knew there was over 400 acres of lush green in the city? The most captivating part of the visit had to be the bonsai collection. Highly recommend trekking over to northeast DC to take it all in. Even better, pack a picnic and soak up sun while you're at it.

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Friday Cocktails: Old Fashioned

I've professed my love for a sidecar whenever we go out.  Well, Keith has recently started a love affair with an old fashioned because every now and then you want your whiskey to give you a sweet little kiss.

The old fashioned is believed to be one of the first known cocktails. As such, it follows a pretty simple and straight forward approach. Early recipes call for any dark spirit such as whiskey, rye or brandy. Today it is traditionally made with bourbon or rye. If you're looking for an even sweeter kiss, I recommend swapping out the rye for bourbon.

Old Fashioned
Makes one cocktail

4 oz. of rye
a sugar cube
dash of bitters
wedge of orange
maraschino cherry for garnish

In a rocks glass, add the orange wedge along with the sugar cube, a few dashes of bitters and a drop or two of water. Using a muddler or wooden spoon mash the orange, sugar, bitters and water to make a nice paste in the bottom of your glass. Add 4 oz of rye and stir. Finally top with ice and garnish with the cherry.


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Working 9 to 5

Looking for a job at any point is stressful. Having been laid off twice, it's even worse when the decision to move on is outside of your control. I went on approximately a dozen interviews. In some cases, I made it to the final round only to learn they went with the other candidate. It slowly starts to nag at your confidence. It makes you question all the previous decisions you made before that moment.

Thankfully, my current employer made a counter-offer that has left me with my current firm. I know some question the stability of the position given they laid me off once before. And it is a risk. However, I like the people I work with and the work I'm doing.

As spring arrives, new blossoms appear and the promise of warm days await. I guess I'm taking my cues from nature as I forward to the new possibilities ahead. Sometimes you just know when something feels right and this is one of those moments.

P.S. Aren't the vibrant pink blossoms gorgeous? I think they bring so much more hope than a photo of my windowless cube.

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A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

I think it's finally safe to say spring has arrived in the nation's capitol.  Since the weather was simply too gorgeous to spend the day indoors doing laundry on Sunday, I took a walk through the neighborhood. I thought you might like to see a few of the pictures. 

If you find yourself on Capitol Hill near Eastern Market, I highly recommend having a meal at Ted's Bulletin. They make homemade pop tarts, boozy milkshakes, an awesome chicken fried steak, and serve breakfast all day. I promise you won't be disappointed. 

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