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Creamy Mushroom Chicken

Salmon Bowl

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Quick Tip:

Salt to Meat Ratio
Depending on who you talk to you or which web site you visit, you'll get a different answer regarding how much salt to add to meat. Based on research and my own experience, around 3/4 of a teaspoon of table salt or sea salt per pound of meat works well in most situations. I have also used as much as 1 teaspoon per pound depending on the recipe. You really need to understand your likes and your recipe to determine the best amount of salt. It's also important to factor in the type and brand of salt. Most table and sea salt are approximately the same. For example, table salt is fine so it is tightly packed while kosher salt tends to have irregular crystal shapes leading to less sodium per measurement. Even among the varieties of kosher salt there are vast differences so be warned!





Latest Review:

Watermelon Dorado
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John Mark's Favorite Cuisines
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Watermelon Dorado 02/26/2016
If you love Grapefruit Sculpin from Ballast Point then you definitely have to try Watermelon Dorado. You absolutely taste the watermelon up front but it's not a sugary processed watermelon. The back end is the double IPA bitterness you like in a well designed IPA like Dorado. It's really a great pairing, likely to become a standard like Grapefruit Sculpin! I was a little skeptical, thinking it was a gimmick that wouldn't last. However, I'm still enjoying it even after my fourth one over a couple weeks time.
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Watermelon Dorado from Ballast Point is refreshing and fruity but still retains that IPA-ness!
Jacaranda 02/24/2016
Named after the purple flowering trees common in southern California, Jacaranda is a wonderfully fruity IPA. The overwhelming fruit note is grapefruit but not like grapefruit sculpin. It's an IPA first with just notes of grapefruit as well as pine. I personally love this IPA and have visited the brewery several times. Claremont Craft Ales is just beginning to break out and I fully expect it to be a big name in craft brewing. Not sure if you can get this beer in your area but it's all over the place in southern California. Don't hesitate if you see this beer in a store near you.
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Jacaranda IPA from Claremont Craft Ales in Claremont, California is one of the best IPAs I've ever tasted.
Pliny the Elder 01/12/2016
If you find yourself lucky enough to acquire this rare double IPA, share it with a couple of friends. But don't expect to go to your local liquor store and find it on the shelves. The search is almost half the fun. Even if you live in Santa Rosa, California, where the beer is brewed, you will be limited to one growler fill and two cases of bottles. I have tried to find it in my area and it does exist but only only for a fleeting moment, like a shooting star. As soon as the limited supplies are placed on the shelf, they sell out almost instantly in Southern California. Fortunately, I have family in Northern California who brought me the famed elixir. What does it taste like? You really need to find out for yourself but it does have notes of pine from the Simcoe hops. It's a must try beer if you are a hop lover, maybe even a holy grail of beers.
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Pliny the Elder is a rare double IPA from Russian River Brewing.
Bourbon County 01/06/2016
If you are just reading this review then you probably aren't going to get a Goose Island Bourbon County beer. There's always next year, right? While your wife is out shopping on Black Friday, line up with the rest of the hordes at your favorite craft beer store and get your one per customer. I went around to every BevMo in the area and was able to obtain a dozen of these beauties. Gave most of them away as Christmas presents, drank a couple and am saving the rest for next year. Beers over 10% alcohol generally age very well. Is it worth the lines? Hell yeah. This may be the first bourbon barrel aged stout but it's still the best sipping beer out there.
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Bourbon County from Goose Island is the original bourbon barrel aged stout!
Velvet Merlin 11/21/2015
Not to be mistaken with it's older brother Velvet Merkin (with a "k"), Velvet Merlin is just an oatmeal stout. Yes, Firestone sells the same beer aged and unaged. But I shouldn't say it is just an oatmeal stout. It's one of the best stouts I've ever had the pleasure of consuming. While it doesn't have the alcohol content of other stouts, it still packs a punch of flavor with coffee and chocolate notes equal to other stouts brewed longer with a higher alcohol content. The shorter brewing time also makes it more drinkable as some stouts tend to be overpowering and bitter. I highly recommend drinking this beer in six packs when it is available during the Fall and Winter.
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Velvet Merlin from Firestone is one of the best oatmeal stouts you can find on the market.
Hop-De-Ranged Jack 11/09/2015
My friend was looking for this barrel aged Hop-De-Ranged for a while so when he found it, he just went to the cashier. After getting rung up he realized it had burned a $30.00 hole in his pocket. Oh well, we must drink it, right? We joked that each sip was 50 cents. And, this is a sipping beer. With all the Jack Daniel's flavor, you really can't taste the hops that much so it feels like a light shot of whiskey. Would we buy it again? Probably not, but it was an experience. It's not that I didn't like the beer. It had been carefully aged and was very tasty with notes of caramel, molasses and vanilla. I just can't justify the price even at $20.00.
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Hop-De-Ranged aged in Jack Daniel's Barrels from Knee Deep Brewing.
Enjoy By 10/19/2015
This is the beer that turned me into an IPA fanatic. I used to buy a case each time it was released, which ends up being every couple of months. What makes it stand out is the freshness, hence the name. Consisting of over a dozen hops, layered over the entire brewing process shows the skill of the Stone brew masters and their ability to bring out hop flavor with citrus notes. While I don't by a case anymore, I still absolutely love this beer and look forward to each release to see how they have tweaked while still keeping the base flavor that is the signature of Enjoy By.
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Enjoy By from Stone is an IPA with over a dozen hops and a smooth citrus flavor.
Velvet Merkin 10/12/2015
I look forward to this beer release every fall. But you gotta move fast cause they don't stay in stores long. I was able to find three this year without too much effort but I knew the release date. And, don't confuse this beer with it's younger cousin Velvet Merlin which is released later in six packs. Velvet Merlin is a great oatmeal stout but it hasn't been aged to perfection in bourbon barrels. Get ready for notes of chocolate, coffee, vanilla and, of course, bourbon. Make sure you get two bottles. Drink one now and age the other one for a year.
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Velvet Merkin is a seasonal special release stout aged in bourbon barrels.
Thunderstruck 10/01/2015
Stone Brewing must be fans of AC/DC too since they named their 10th anniversary IPA after an Australian band! That was the first thing I thought and then I discovered they used four different Australian hops in this anniversary concoction. Too bad they passed up Highway to Hell, TNT and Have a Drink on Me. But in all seriousness, this is a great beer. I was lucky enough to consume this beer on tap the first time and was quite pleased with the citrus tones of their layered hop combination. Of course, I bought half a dozen 22oz bottles and haven't been disappointed. get this limited release while you still can.
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Thunderstruck is the 10th Anniversary IPA release from Stone Brewing!
Victory at Sea 09/28/2015
I don't drink a lot of porters or stouts, but when I do, this is one of my favorites. Infused with coffee and vanilla, this porter is heavy on coffee with notes of vanilla to brighten your taste buds. The coffee is aggressive so it's not for everyone. You will taste bitter but also sweetness. In fact, there are so many different flavors in this porter at different times during the trip from lips to stomach that I found myself enjoying the journey with every sip. Still, I think a 22oz bottle is better to enjoy with friends as this beer can be a bit overpowering.
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Victory at Sea is a porter from Ballast Point Brewing with coffee and vanilla notes.
Hop Freshner 09/18/2015
Third in the Hop Freshner series, this Lemon & Grassy IPA is pretty good. I like the idea behind the Port Brewing and Lost Abbey collaboration and I hope they continue the venture as I enjoy experimental flavor and hop combinations. I've purchased four 22 ounce Lemon & Grassy bottles so I clearly enjoyed it but still, it doesn't come close in my eyes to the first in the series, Dank & Sticky. You can definitely taste the hops and the lemon. Not so sure about the grass but I don't regularly eat grass so I'm not a good judge. Might have tasted grass a few times playing football but that was a while ago.
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Lemon & Grassy IPA - from the The Hop Freshner Series
RuinTen 08/28/2015
This triple IPA from Stone Brewing is one of my favorites. Stone makes some of the most tantalizing IPAs on the market, you could almost say they invented the market. Their layering of hops is genius, making beer that is uniquely Stone. This beer is no exception. Heavy with citrus tones without actually adding any citrus is what makes this beer sing. Very aggressive and smooth all at the same time. Try this beer but make sure you don't have anywhere to go cause it's 10.8% alcohol.
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RuinTen - A triple IPA from Stone Brewing