December 31, 2012

A Fond Farewell to 2012.

This is a plate I took a photo of in Anthropologie last Spring.
Things that shaped my year- or at least were memorable enough to make this post.

I joined Sweat. It was the first time in my entire life that I signed up for a membership and actually went.

I ran three organized runs- The Odyssey half marathon. (you should do it with me again this May) The Dogfish Dash (10 K and enjoyed a wonderful weekend in Rehoboth) and a 5k  in Portland, Me with Allagash- this one was 20 degrees weather. It snowed. I was so cold.

My sister got married. Said marriage took place on the day of the World Beer Cup so I couldn't go. I was quite bitter while taking Lance Romance to the airport. But on that day, once I saw the beaming bride nothing else mattered. Allagash took Gold for Belgian White. I found out at a hotel bar at 12 am. And that was pretty awesome. So awesome- in fact- that I jumped up and down.

I made popovers from the recipe that BLT steak (washinton DC) gives you when you dine at their restaurant.

Jennie Hatton introduced me to Camera + at the Red Lounge
Lance Romance finally convinced me to go to the Red Lounge. We sang "Jack and Diane" and drank Swedish fish. Gross. I'd rather eat swedish fish and listen to the original.

I dipped my fingers in the sour mash at Makers Mark in Bourbon Country

Road on the top of a car from Southwark to my house. There's a video just in case you don't believe me.

Survived three beer weeks. 3!  (3 different cities)

Made great new beer buds down in DC

Played scrabble (deluxe!) in front of a fire place in Bruges drinking a Rochefort 10. #dreamy

I had one of the best meals of my life at Catbird Seat in Nashville.

I had a great year with Allagash. They're the bees knees.

I got really sick in October and ended up in the ER twice in two days.  I'll be paying for it until October of this year. But at least my doctor was hot?

I had an wondeful french omelette at Hot Suppa in Portland, Me. Caramelized onions and gruyere. So simple and so freakin' good.

I listened to Tom Waits the Early Years Volume 2 probably about 100 times.

I saw Langhorne Slim doing a backyard concert in a rainy Nashville parking lot at Grimeys records.

I made girl scout cookies thin mint ice cream.

I ate a canele from Laduree in Paris.  But I had an even better one at Daniel Boulud's Epicerie Boulud in NYC.

Drank Champagne and St Germain on La Rue Mouffetard

c Jean

Had an amazing dinner in Ghent at C Jean.  The owner's daughter served us.  She had the nicest way about her.Her husband was in the kitchen. The plates were works of art. I was in awe.

Lumineers did a cover of "This must be the place" at Johnny Brenda's on my birthday.

I made a bundt cake. Then I made two more.

Had my best Salad of the year at In Riva. Megan Maguire would agree. She can't eat beets anywhere else now.

I got to co-host a COOK class with Sanjay Shende of Tashan before he moved back to Ireland. He also had a small party in Silver Linings Playbook. Which means I co-hosted a class on Indian food and Belgian Beer with a famous person. What an honor. I love the food there and maybe maybe one day they'll have white on the list.

After hearing the Raging Panda talk about it for a year- I found out I really like SMAK parlour- the lovely boutique on Market st. Check it out.

I stained a picnic table.

I ran to Grey Lodge from Fishtown- TWICE.

Drank Irish Coffees at Kennett (the very best!)

I found this charming little town just north of Baltimore called Hampden.

My patience was tested in multiple ways. It still is.


I'll never forget this turkey leg as long as I live.
 I was so sick.
 I have no ideas who those sunglasses belong to either
I drove white-knuckled - hands clenched on "10 and 2" for the hour drive from Portland to Portsmouth.
I skidded for about ten feet. Lance told me I was one snow flake away from a meltdown. He was right.

In other life-threatening news= I thought I was going to die on a plane crossing the Atlantic on our way back from England.  The only thing that calmed me down - was noticing that 7 year olds were totally fine.

I scored a 1970s leather bag on a stoop sale for $2. It's really hard for me to pay full price for things after that.

I enjoyed an afternoon reading on a porch and over looking the main street of Jim Thorpe.

Everytime I have a sip of Firestone walker, I taste excellence. And I am motivated to try and be better at everything I do.

I went camping with my family and walked across boulder field.

My nephew Kellen said to me, "I love you Aunt Suzy, and I missed you"

My two best multi-course dining experiences of the year were at Sbraga and Will.

I gave up coffee for 11 weeks and alcohol for 11 days.

I swear I never heard the song "Cut here" from the Cure before. It's an important song. "Later doesn't always come."

Lacquer lounge opened- and my manicures forever changed. I can walk there and they have free mimosas on Sunday. (Back to that whole cheap thing I talked about earlier).

I found hammocks in the middle of Catherine st with friends Wendy, and Liz and we rested in them for a bit. Twas a lovely, lazy Sunday.

I scored so many nice hotel rooms for so cheap I lost count. (there it is again!)

I  had the best chocolate chip cookie ever in Louisville. It's a place called Please and Thank you. They also have Thai coffee and sell records.  That place tried to single-handedly steal me from Philly. But I am still here. So you guys obviously mean more to me than that  cookie.

I had the best brick chicken of my life at Via Matta in Boston. Everything else about the restaurant was so-so, but the Chicken- oh the chicken. I love that chicken and the brick that sat on it while it cooked.

I left an Allagash sticker on a Philly-inspired pizza joint called Spinellis in Louisville.

Got booed off a karaoke stage in Nashville. I guess I should really stop trying to relive how great I did Thunder Road- at a Wedding in 2009.

Had a girl crush on Olivia Munn.

Got picked up from the Louisville airport in a pink limo and transported with the Allagash crew to Makers Mark.

Dressed up like a gladiator and got my ass kicked by my friend Wendy during a Philly beer week event at Kite and Key. I thought I was going to die. It was right up there with the turbulence over Greenland.

Got to celebrate one of my favorite people - who was able to save three children from an awful environment and give them a second chance.

Had an amazing dinner on a farm in Connecticut.  And was the only lady not wearing Lily Pulitzer.

Had best spa experience ever at REVEL.  Ahhh, the Sanctuary.

Built a pinewood derby car resembling a cheesesteak. I will be happy to show it to you sometime. Although it now has graphite all over it.

I also ate about 7 cheesesteaks coming home from the POPE. I pass cheesesteakville on the way to my house. I hated every single one.

Got my picture taken with Joe Gunn at least twice.

Drank way more Allagash White than you did.

Met a couple new friends. That I promise one day I will stop calling "my new friends."

Went to my college best friend's bachelorette in NYC. Survived.

Found a blue cheese I could finally eat- Rogue Smokey Blue.

Signed the US Brewers wall at "The Rake" in London.
Got to see the legendary cask room at the Whitehorse Pub on Parsons Green in London

Saw Peter Nero and the POPS for their final Holiday show. Was blown away by the talent. Felt very small.

Olivier at Brasserie Dupont explaining
Grandfathers Recipes
Spent three days in Bruges with the great company of Scoats, William Reed, Tom Peters, Steve Bell, Melanie Bergwall, and of course Lance Romance.

Got to tour Brasserie Dupont and Brasserie De La Senne. Yvan de Baets is da man.

Made my own hamburger helper and compared it to the Betty Crocker Hamburger helper.
I think Lance romance preferred the box. Oh well.

Fell in love with Royal Tavern's soba noodle salad again and again. One day I will count how many steps from my front door to their bar. And I will know exactly how far away I am from that salad.

I'm tired. I'll end there. Maybe I'll add to it tomorrow. No- actually tomorrow is my first day back to work since 12/21. Maybe I will add to it at some point. There is so much more.

It was a good  great year. 

A very happy 2013 to all of you.


  1. Great recap! And a great example on how to do one, always interesting and free of ego. You've inspired me to do one.

  2. What a great year! Always enjoy reading what you're up to - keep it coming. Thanks!