Day 2 (7/12/11)
When it comes to beer-tasting, my time spent in Santa Fe was a giant win. But it was a giant fail for food. C’est domage.
Upon our arrival in Santa Fe, JT and I went straight to the opera, (have I mentioned that he’s a badass props master?) where I met his friends and fellow badass prop artisans. I’m always amazed by the insane amounts of skill–and ridiculously cool job–that they have. Seriously. Why can’t I get paid to put together a model car, or create a giant lion out of foam?
But I digress.
After meeting, greeting, and planning our evening escapades, JT and I set off for Santa Fe Brewing Company. The tiny brew pub had a few local devotees hanging around outside, and maybe three old men at the bar. Behind the bar was the quintessential dreadlocked, crunchy, inappropriate comment-making lesbian. She said things like, “this is the State Pen Porter. Put a little of the Chickenkiller barleywine in it and you get a prison chick. But since you’re allergic to nuts, you shouldn’t add the Nut Brown Ale, even though nutty prison chicks are hot.” (Side note: I’m totally allergic to pretty much all nuts. Not peanuts though, because they’re legumes. And tasty.)
Even though a few of the beers weren’t necessarily my pint o’ choice, so to speak, they all had merit. We even tried a sour beer. Which was decidedly my least favorite. But the porter was soooo tasty, as was the hefeweissen, IPA, and barleywine (which I’ve had a several times in Dallas).
Armed with just enough of a buzz to willingly get back in the car after driving for six hours, we headed to Second Street Brewery. And thank God I had a buzz, because that place was teeming with ironic shirt-wielding, bad beard-sporting, hipsters. And there’s nothing worse than a swarm of hipsters drinking beer and crooning about a bunch of ridiculous mess at open mic night. Add to this a very clearly disinterested and lazy waitress, and you’ve got a recipe for one hell of an annoyed LFL. But it gets better…and by “better,” I mean “worse, yet better because I kept the IPAs coming.” Besides, the entire night couldn’t have been a fail, since I was in good company with JT and his friend Anna Warren, who is also one hell of a badass props artisan. Check out her magic here.
The IPAs weren’t too bad. I should know–I ordered samples of all three, and a half pint of the deliciously high ABV Imperial. But as for the food, well, I was rather disappointed. It’s too bad, really, because the menu’s descriptions held so much promise. I ordered the smoked ham croissant, described thusly: “Bakery fresh croissant filled with thin sliced smoked ham, gorgonzola cheese, fresh local sun flower sprouts and sliced avocado.” Sounds tasty, right? Wrong.
Ok, that’s not completely true. But my meal wasn’t exactly completely honest with me, either. Seriously. If you look at the picture below, you’ll see a cute little green comestible that would, upon first glance, appear to be a pickle. Well look closer, reader: it’s a damn cucumber slice. And I for one feel strongly that a fancy-schmancy sliced cucumber sure as hell isn’t a pickle.
You might also be thinking, “hey, you didn’t say that the sandwich comes with a salad! And where’s the ham and gorgonzola?” To which I say, “that’s a good question.”
The sandwich was absolutely smothered by a salad-sized amount of the sunflower greens, and the ham and gorgonzola was barely noticeable. Probably because it barely existed. Too bad, too. Because the few bits that I did find were pretty good. But overall, I was just plain disappointed, kind of like when Ralphie finally received his Little Orphan Annie secret decoder, only to discover that the secret phrase was an admonition to drink his Ovaltine.
If only Ralphie had kept the IPAs coming, he might have been okay.
Day 3 (7/13/11)
But visiting the magical land of Trader Joe’s the next morning brought me a least a little solace, whereupon I discovered snack-sized bags of freeze-dried strawberries. Suddenly, astronaut food had become the caviar of the new earth-conscious, perpetually vacationing, hipster bourgeoisie. And damn it, I joined their ranks that day, happily munching on those freeze-dried strawberries all the way from Santa Fe to the Coconino National Forest in Happy Jack, AZ (we realized that it was easier to stay there and get to Phoenix earlier the next day than it would have been to drive to Canyon de Chelly). But I quickly defected once I polished off the bag later in the evening.
Thus ends part two of our trip. In the next post we tackle round two of the camp stove war, lament our complete inability to start a campfire, and chide JT for not waking up when I told him there was a bear outside our tent.