Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Berwick Brewery


On our way back from New York, we decided to stop somewhere and actually eat a real meal. Thanks to the powers of the internet, we found a great little spot that was a perfect place to stretch our legs and fill our bellies. The town of Berwick is really cute, is just a short drive off the highway (I-80) and happens to be the home of Wise Potato Chips. 

But that's not why we made the stop! Berwick Brewing was what we were searching for and it was well worth the short detour. 
This place serves beer, pizza and pretzels. That's it. And they do it really really well!
We tried two pizzas - the veggie lovers and margherita - and both were great. They had some really interesting and unique ones available too like the curd and jager (cheese curds and dry cured German sausage) and the Steve-O Inferno but my dining companions weren't interested in being that adventurous.
The thin and chewy crust was delicious. The herbs and veggies were from their garden. My only sadness was that they didn't have any olives. Obviously no Italian or Greek people working here!

We controlled ourselves and split a 6 beer sampler because we had a LONG drive home. We chose the Front Street Wheat, Dunkel Weizen, AZ's Smoked Porter, Vaughn's Cream Ale, Berwick Lager and Red Bank Dark. I also got a tiny taste of the Grumpy Bill's Porter to compare it to the smoked. 

They oddly put the beers on the board in the order they were chosen instead of in the order they should be consumed but we managed :)

We were seriously shocked at how tasty the beer was. Our least favorite was the Berwick Lager but they were all very drinkable. I was happy to finally try my first smoked beer - and I liked it! My favorite was the Red Bank Dark. For all you IPA lovers out there, theirs is supposed to be fabulous so you should put that on your list.

They have tons of indoor seating as well as a patio and a bier garten that overlooks the river.

What a great place to visit! We were there at 3pm on a Sunday but I imagine that it's quite the hot spot on a Friday or Saturday night. It's definitely worth a visit the next time you find yourself in central PA. So bring your growlers or buy them there so you can take home your favorites for a delicious souvenir. 

Thursday, August 22, 2013

A Tasty Trip to NY

Things here are non-stop wedding. Only 37 more days to go! And while I'm one of those crazy girls who actually enjoy all the wedding planning, it's really nice to take a break once in awhile to keep you sane. And to keep your fiance from wedding overload...

We did just that this past weekend when we headed to Long Island for a very special birthday. 

Uncle Leo (actually M's Mom's 2nd cousin's Dad - I'll leave the precise title to you genealogy buffs) turned 95. Yes, 95! 
Rose and Leo - 63 years of marriage!
It was the perfect excuse to get away and enjoy being engaged while we can. And it was even more perfect because almost a year ago to the day, we were in NY and M popped the question. Can't believe a year passed by so quickly!

While we didn't revisit the spot in Central Park where that life changing moment took place, we did have a great time on Long Island and upstate.

The party was a lot of fun and the food was amazing. Spaccarelli's specializes in cuisine from the Abruzzese region of Italy, east of Rome. All of the waiters are Italian and they serve in courses which I love. If you are ever in Millwood, NY, it's a Must Do. 

This antipasta alone is worth the trip ~ this is what dreams are made of!
From the left, clockwise: mushrooms, eggplant, HOMEMADE mozzarella, roasted red peppers and garlic, asparagus, green beans with gorgonzola, aged provolone, dried sausage and prosciutto wrapped melon
veal with mushrooms, artichokes and peas
potato croquettes with roasted broccoli with garlic
We visited the Bronx Zoo which is truly one of the nicest zoos I've ever been too. 

And we also visited Arthur Avenue and dined at Dominick’s Restaurant.

The gang at 2335 Arthur Avenue
This place is unique with its communal tables, no menus, no listed prices and cash only. We had a prosciutto and bread crumb stuffed artichoke (why don't Cleveland restaurants serve these?) and clams to start. I had linguine with bolognese and stole a delicious meatball from my fiance. The salad was old school and delicious with a red wine vinaigrette. Can't believe I didn't take a single picture of the food!

We also stopped at Arthur Avenue Cigars and a tasty bakery.
And we had so much fun visiting with the New York cousins! We found these on our pillow one night.
What a SWEET touch :)
And we got to meet the newest member of the family, Ellie.
Whatta cutie!
Lots of laughs, more great food, cocktails and a tequila tasting made for another perfect visit.
While we were crossing the George Washington bridge, or I should say, while we were sitting in traffic waiting to cross the bridge, we stole this glimpse of the city...
and can't wait to get back!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Is it really August already?

So this was a weekend with nothing at all planned and lots of fun accomplished - love it when that happens!

Friday was one year since we got engaged - gulp! Can't believe how fast that year went!!! With less than two months 'til the big day, I bet time is going to shift into warp speed. Every now and then I have a panic attack when looking at my To Do list, but thankfully, all the big stuff is done.

Saturday we looked at potential wedding rings (yeah, that's still on the To-Do list!) and were L-A-Z-Y. A summer cold slowed me down a bit but it was awesome to spend the evening sitting on the couch watching Avatar and just chilling out with my sweetie.
TownHall Ohio City Cleveland Restaurant

Sunday we celebrated Buffy's birthday with brunch at Townhall. It was her first brunch and she was a little overwhelmed but was still really well behaved. It was our first time there and we absolutely loved it! I had the bruschetta with prosciutto, poached eggs and arugula, M. had the Eggwich and we split a sweet potato hotcake. Everything was delicious, our server was fab and we can't wait to go back.

TownHall brunch

Another first today - my first bike ride of the year! How did I not get out before now?!?! Oh yeah, see the first paragraph for a clue :)  It included sunshine, fresh air and a spectacular crash. My first since I was probably 9 years old. Ouch! Thankfully, with only 47 days 'til the wedding, no missing teeth or face damage but the rest of me didn't fare so well. Maybe I'll stay on two feet until after the wedding...

But visiting with this little cutie made me forget all about my bumps, cuts, scrapes and bruises - he is the sweetest little baby and melts my heart every time. xoxo
Jackson feeding himself like a big boy

Friday, August 2, 2013

The Bridal Shower Post --- Finally!

So, we are now down to less than two months and I can tell you, time is flying by! Not only is summer a blur but I am truly feeling that our wedding is right around the corner. This weekend is the highly anticipated Bachelorette Party!!

More on that later. Maybe. :)

I realized that I never posted about the beautiful bridal shower we had! Hard to believe it was over a month ago already. My favorite meal is brunch and Hodge's created a feast for us. A delicious scrambled egg bar where you add your own toppings, the most perfect bacon imaginable and potatoes so delicious people are still talking about them were just some of the items offered.
You can check out my friend Julie's blog about it for lots of pics. For some reason the tablecloths look purple but they were pink and orange. Anyways, I've stolen a few of my favorites for this post too - thanks Julie!


The favors were a huge hit and I literally had to beg people to share them with me because they were gone in a blink of an eye. 

Lemon cake pops by Sarah and the chocolate covered pretzels and Oreos by Laurie (lalabyeart@hotmail.com) were delicious and so pretty. If you are looking for something sweet that will knock your socks off, they are available to take your order.
Seriously, these were almost too cute to eat!

There's never too many sweet treats at a bridal shower. Prepare to drool...
Aunt Phyllis' famous anise cookies
Aunt Nina's famous cheese cake and what Italian event is complete without cassata cake!
The adorable cupcake wedding dress cake by my mother-in-law to be Beth - soooo cute!
With me being busy being the Bride-to-Be, I had to rely on others to take photos. Here's some of my favorites things about the shower - my awesome family and friends!
Mom and the practice veil she made me
From Left: Joy, Christine and Elisabeth
MOH Mari
Cousin Christine
Tia, Julia and Maria - some of my step family
Carrie, Michele and Sheryl
You'll notice some key people missing - MARK (duh - huge photography fail!), mother-in-law-to-be Beth, my other two awesome bridesmaids Jen and Tina, and the rest of our families. Here's a tip - when giving your camera to someone to take photos for you, give them specific pictures you want taken!

I'm obsessed with this...
and can't wait to hang my wedding dress on it!!!
I have to give a huge shout out and thanks to everyone who made this day so special. The kindness and generosity were overwhelming. I'll wrap it up before I get choked up again and leave you with some cuteness