Matthew's Foray into Blogging

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

490 Miles for Barbecue

I drove 490 miles roundtrip for barbecue. Luling City Market sells some storied offerings from the barbecue pit. Actually, I did not make the drive just to buy barbecue. I happened to be in Bexar County, and I stopped off on my way back to Houston. City Market does not provided utensils for dining, and they serve the barbecue wrapped in sheets of butcher paper. I skirted this lack of forks by purchasing some beef brisket for carryout.

The beef was seared on the outside, with a flavorful, crunchy crust, and it was moist and tender on the inside. It had an intensely smoky flavor. I hope using a fork and knife is not considered cheating.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006


I am traveling to Mason, Texas this weekend. I am looking forward to visiting this quaint, historic town. I would much prefer to have a three- or even four-day weekend, though. I like to take it easy on the weekends. Driving five hundred-plus miles roundtrip, and staying in unfamiliar accommodations, does not make for the most relaxing weekend, for me. Well, I can just look forward to the next weekend.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

I Pity the Fool!

…who has to fly from Gatwick Airport, London, to Intercontinental Airport, Houston, in the wake of the failed terrorist attacks. My sister happened to be returning from a two-month European tour at a rather inopportune time. Days before she was to fly back, British authorities thwarted a terrorist plot to blow up airliners from the U.K. bound for the U.S. Fortunately, the terrorists’ nefarious plot was foiled. However, the discovery of the planned attack prompted heightened security and, consequently, significant delays at airports. My sister’s flight was only delayed for a bit shy of three hours. Unfortunately for me, she was unable to carry back any Scotch or Irish whiskys. Carryon luggage was severely restricted, and the transport of liquids, such as water, fragrances, hair styling aids, and liquor, was prohibited, as bombs consisting of liquid materials were among the weapons the terrorists planned to use. I was so looking forward to a bottle of Laphroaig. I am glad that my sister is safe at home.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Classics (Tie Knots, That Is)

I am fairly please with myself! I tied a decent looking full Windsor tie knot today. My proficiency in tying ties is improving. I had started with a four-in-hand, and then I ventured into the tying of a half Windsor. I may have progressed to a full Windsor. I still rely on the four-in-hand and the half-Windsor, but it is quite useful to have an additional knot in my repertoire. No matter how expertly my ties are tied, though, I’m sure no one other than me notices.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

“Those are topless club prices!”

The Saint Arnold Divine Reserve No. 2 has been released. I was a bit put off by the price of $13.00 for a six-pack. That’s over twice as much as I am generally willing to pay for beer. A coworker remarked, “Those are topless club prices!” According to the description on the Saint Arnold website, “Divine Reserve is a series of single batch beers, each brewed with a completely different recipe.” The Divine Reserve is produced in extremely limited quantities, as in fewer than 500 cases. Is this a clever marketing gimmick, designed to allow the Saint Arnold Brewery to charge outrageous amounts for beer? Or is the Divine Reserve worth over $2.00 per twelve-ounces?

The more I read about it and the more I contemplated it, the more convinced I became that I had to try the exorbitantly priced Divine Reserve No. 2. If “it is best described as an Abbey American quadruppel,” two dollars for a 12-ounce might not be unreasonable, I supposed, considering that similar style beers, like Chimay or Maredsous (the production of which has been entrusted to Duvel Moortgat), cost around $6.00 to $9.00, respectively, for 750 mL bottles. Additionally, I justified purchasing a $13.00 six-pack when I considered that even a domestic brew purchased in a restaurant or bar would likely cost more than $2.00.

I found the Divine Reserve No. 2 to be sickly sweet, syrupy. It might better be consumed during the colder months. If the objective of drinking beer is to become intoxicated, this is a good pick, at 9% alcohol. If this beer “should develop well in the bottle over time,” maybe I will let it continue to take up room in the fridge. Maybe it will improve with age, or perhaps its flavor will be more agreeable with the arrival of cooler weather.