the other summer beverage

hello hello. greetings. ahoy-hoy. hola. a million ways to say hi for the million weeks it seems like i've been missing. blame it on a new job. blame it on being busy looking for an apartment (found one!). blame it on a certain co-blogger's wedding. blame it on cain?

but blame it on booze? -gasp- NEVER! i recently started working in a wine/spirits/beer store, and although lacking the perk of a discount, the relatively low prices and insane convenience of grabbing a bottle after work is usually too good to pass up. i've been expanding my beer knowledge (sorry, PBR) and testing some new juice (that's what we call wine sometimes) all before my new early bedtime.

a recent favorite and perfect for summer: Casal Garcia Vinho Verde - a white from portugal, it is just slightly effervescent, the name literally translates to "green wine", referring to it's "youthful freshness" not it's color, although it does have a slightly greenish hue. super light, crisp, refreshing, low alcohol content and pretty damn refreshing at that. and at 5.69, i'm fairly positive you can't really beat it.

let me know, i'll pick you up a bottle!


hubba hubba

june is the time for swimming, jean shorts, weddings (!!) and iced coffee. i'm no wimp about the heat - i actually love it - but after an uphill bike ride to work, i can't really deal with a steaming cup of hot coffee. now some people (crazy people) don't like cold coffee, but for the rest of us, it's heaven. remember when you were a little kid, and thought real coffee was bitter and gross but were really stoked about coffee flavored ice cream? even 7 year old you knew what was up.

i still love the iced coffee at capogiro (my former place of employment) the best. it's just cold brewed la colombe, but for some reason it's superior to any iced coffee i've tried this side of the schuylkill. however, the capo at 40th & walnut street is a little too far away from my office for a quick coffee run, so lately, when i need chilled caffeine, i've been rocking it at hub bub.

hub bub is a beautiful, cherry red coffee truck located on 38th street between spruce and walnut. they serve stumptown coffee, some west coast shit that's sure to get your brain buzzing, which is precisely what i'm after on these humid mornings. their iced coffee is super good: strong brew, deep taste, and pleasing acidity, perfectly tempered with a splash of soy milk.

bonus: a skinny straw!! have you been noticing the trend of cold to-go beverages coming with bulky oversized straws? that really bugs me. a "little" size of this iced coffee is $2.50, pretty standard price in these parts. they also offer a "big" size for $3, but i fear any more than 16 ounces of this stuff might give me heart palpitations. the small size gets me just wired enough to focus my mind and knock out a bunch of emails, copies, and memos all before noontime.

here's to the sunshine and the summertime,


CSA aka Consuming Squash All Summer Long

when i was younger, just a few years past teenager-hood, i often wondered if i could ever get my shit together enough to meet some of the small goals i'd been mentally compiling. you know, all those things that we think and hope will help us along the road to self improvement. it's interesting to look back from time to time and see which of those have come to fruition, and which still reside on the "well, maybe one day" list.

a small sampling:
stop biting my nails - maybe one day.
take yoga classes - check.
learn to drive stick - nope.
bake bread from scratch - yup.
crochet sweaters and blankets - not so much.
have a photography show - check!
become a master gardener - ...no.
start a food blog - double check!!

you see how it goes? and i try not to get down on myself for those goals not yet actualized; i know there is lots and lots of time to learn new skills and try stuff out. one of the goals that i'd been totally slacking on since my time living in philly is subscribing to a CSA. CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture, and it's a way for farmers to get their crops to larger groups of paying customers. People buy "shares" from the farmers, and then receive weekly or bi-monthly boxes of fresh, seasonal produce all throughout the summer and fall! brilliant, right? in cities (or in philadelphia, at least), this often done by drop offs of boxes of produce at farmer's markets. it's such an undeniably awesome program, i can't really say why i've dragged my feet about it over the past few years.

so this year, finally, the VR team signed up for a CSA, through greensgrow farms, a super rad urban garden in kensington (how cute is the banner on their website with the tiny bottles of beer and watermelons?). this past saturday was our first pick up, and it was a thrill! i drove over there around 10, and the farm was bustling! it was a lovely summer morning, and all kinds of adorable people and their children were shopping for produce, flowers, and plants. a cuter scene, i've never seen. i walked away with a big smile, and a bag full of beautiful produce:

just a few items from our first CSA crop!

aren't those radishes gorgeous? my favorite new little snack is bread with a generous layer of earth balance (or butter), thinly sliced radishes and a tiny pinch of salt. very frenchie.
can't wait to see what our CSA shares for the rest of the summer hold in store!