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Review: Sorel Women’s Joan of Arctic Boots

5 Mar

I decided that 2012 was the year I was going to buy a decent pair of snow boots. Not only decent in the snow, but cute to look at too. I have had a pair of legit snow boots from another company that has been around for as long as I can remember. However, they suck. They don’t keep my feet warm. They were fine for running out to the car, but if there was any legit walking through the snow, my feet would be freezing by the time I took them off. And they were pleather/vinyl so they are now doing that lovely peeling thing pleather likes to do. I refused to face another year with those as my snow boots!

Onto the Sorel boots – I own another pair of them that go to about mid-calf. They aren’t super duper cute(like these ones!) but they serve their purpose for getting through the snow and keeping my feet warm. And they are easy to get on or off rather quickly since they are slip on and zip up. Since they do hit at mid-calf, they do make my calf sore after wearing them for any extended period of time since they are so stiff  (as snow boots should be!) and I wanted a cute pair.

I searched around and looked at a lot of different brands. The ones that stood out for me with great reviews and a really nice look were the Sorel Women’s Joan of Arctic Boots. They are fun with the faux furry tops, they are practical with the rubber boot base, and they are stylish because they come in a variety of colors to fit whatever floats your boat. And they are LEATHER!  I’ve had them for about a month now and just got the chance to try them out. Figures I go and purchase some snow boots and we don’t get enough snow in Pennsylvania to break them out! But last weekend, I got my chance.

I wore these all day for getting my grocery shopping done, bringing in firewood for my gram, shoveling sidewalks, and then in the evening for going out. After all of that, I can honestly say I think it’s a great boot. My feet were never once cold. They lived up to their waterproof advertisement. They were what I felt is true to size for a snow boot. I wear an 8, ordered and 8, and they fit perfect. There is room to wear thick winter socks, so that means they do run a little big but you want to be able to wear thicker socks in the winter so the extra room is a plus. They were slightly hard to walk in at first, as with any snow boot. But I got used to it right away and was no big deal. While these boots are pricey, they are worth it. I don’t see myself ever needing to purchase another pair of snow boots again because these things are built to last. And still be stylish 10 years from now.

Wanna check them out? Go here. I purchased mine from amazon for about $40 less than the advertised price. I got them in the Taffy/Port Royale color. love it!!!

Review – Paula Deen 8-Cup Stovetop Percolator

7 Oct

I love coffee. Iced coffee, cappuccino, espresso. But my favorite is plain old cup of brewed coffee with some good cream and sugar.

I have a Cuisinart single serve coffee maker that went on the fritz and stopped working. While its getting fixed, I can’t be without my morning cup of coffee on the weekends. So instead of purchasing a cheap little coffee maker to tide me over until the Cuisinart makes it’s return to me, I decided to purchase a percolator. My grandfather used to drink coffee just that way – I can remember being little and watching the coffee bubble into the glass top of the percolator on the stove top, and the smell of coffee filled the air. I purchased the Paula Deen version from amazon to give it a try. It was the most reasonably priced stove top one and I was smitten with the blue one. When it arrived I washed the pot and got down to making my first cup of percolated coffee – pumpkin spice! the house smelled delish. This type of coffee brewing takes a little more effort than turning on a pot or popping a k-cup into your single serve brewer, but it’s so worth the effort. What you get is a rich, strong cup of coffee where the flavor is deep and true. This is truly the way coffee is supposed to be enjoyed!

If you purchase one of these, be sure to follow the directions! There is no little glass top where you view your coffee’s progress, but it’s not really necessary. You just need to listen for it to start boiling and then turn down the heat and let it ‘brew’ for 7 minutes. You’ll be rewarded with a great cup of coffee.

To check it out, click the photo below to take you to amazon’s page. The blue versions photo looks more teal, but it’s actually a robin’s egg blue.

Image from amazon.com

REVIEW: Wolaver’s Pumpkin Ale by Otter Creek Brewing

4 Aug

I know it’s only the beginning of August, but I can’t help but become nostalgic for fall recipes. I know fall is not really that far away, but right now it feel eons away and i’m having a hankering for fall  flavors.

Pumpkin pie, pumpkin cookies, pumpkin ice cream, pumpkin bread, pumpkin BEER. I don’t know if you noticed but to me nothing says fall more than pumpkin flavored things. It doesn’t hurt that i’ve got a surplus of the canned stuff sitting on my pantry shelves and a stock of it portioned out in the chest freezer. The husband and I are planning on brewing a pumpkin beer in the next couple of weeks so that we can enjoy that through the fall and transition from all this summer style wheat beer we’ve been brewing and drinking. Now for those of you that like pumpkin beer, even 1/4 as much as I do, here’s a little secret – most pumpkin beers don’t ACTUALLY contain any pumpkin! *insert Gasp. Shock. Horror here* This revelation made me feel like I was being lied to, led on, cheated out of some good old pumpkin flavor in my fall beer choices. Alot of the brewers use pumpkin pie SPICES so when you crack open a bottle of “pumpkin” beer you get a whiff of cinnamon and nutmeg…but no actual pumpkin is present. But fear not – there are brewers out there who offer pumpkin beer with actual pumpkin in it!

The husband and I went out to our local place to sample their Wednesday offering and I decided to peruse the coolers to see what bottle I could sample next. And there is was – pumpkin ale made with PUMPKIN! The angels sang, the earth moved, I smiled like Ralphie when he got his Red Rider BB Gun on Christmas morning.

Behold!

This beer is DELICIOUS! Opening it, it smells like a pumpkin pie right of the oven. It’s got that nice warm orange color from it actually being MADE with pumpkin. It’s smooth and tasty and everything a pumpkin beer should be. I wanted more. But I behaved because it was a work night. And I was full from dinner. But I would have had more. Really.

This is made by Otter Creek Brewing, which is located in Vermont. Check them out if you’re ever in their area. And by all means, if you can get your hands on some of this, try it! Oh, and for those of you that it matters to, it’s made with USDA Organic pumpkin.

http://www.ottercreekbrewing.com/

 

 

 

Review – 21st Amendment Brewery Hell or High Watermelon wheat beer

21 Jul

I have become obsessed with wheat beers. Maybe it’s because it’s summer, maybe it’s because i’ve become a beer snob since we started going to the bar/6 pack shop up the street from our house that has over 13oo beers (36 of which are also on draft with an additional 10 to be added) so I get to get away from your standard variety of beer offerings and branch out to try many new things!

They had posted they were going to have their Wednesday special beer to try was a Watermelon Wheat beer. I was intrigued. Watermelon you say? Wheat beer? Watermelon + Wheat beer? I am game. The husband and I went and it was summertime in a glass. Most summer beers have a citrus flavor – lemon, lime or orange. These are good, don’t get me wrong. However this beer was something unique. It has a nice smooth flavor without any of that bitter hop aftertaste. It’s crisp and refreshing. You can taste the watermelon. It’s not overpowering but it is most certainly present. And here is the kicker – this beer comes in a CAN! And it’s still good. No metallic can taste that some beers can get. I personally rate it 5 stars. It’s nice to have a beer that differs from the usual summertime offerings.

The 21st Amendment Brewery is based in San Francisco (sigh). I want to go there. I want to do keg stands with this beer. They do of course have other beers, but currently my love affair is way to intense with this particular version of their beer to give any others a try just yet.

If you can get your hands on a can of this, certainly give it a try. I’m trying to locate a case to keep and enjoy throughout the rest of the summer when the urge strikes. If you go to their website, they have a vendor locator that you can search for someone near you!

http://21st-amendment.com/

Watermelon Wheat beer - summer in a glass. or can. whichever you prefer.

Review -Olde Savannah Southern Style Sweet Tea Wine. Yes Wine.

19 Jul

When I go to the liquor store, I always like to scope out the offerings just to see anything new out there or anything that I like but don’t necessarily need at that moment that is on sale. While scanning the shelves, I came across this Sweet Tea wine. Hmm. Then I saw that it was on sale for $4.99 and had an instant $1 off coupon. Wine, for $3.99 a bottle? Well, I wasn’t sure how good it was going to taste being so cheap, but I figured, what did I have to lose? So I bought 2 bottles – one to try that night after it was well chilled, and the other for the girls party I was having that weekend.

That night at dinner the husband and I shared a bottle of it and boy were we both surprised. It was very good! It essentially tastes like some boozy iced tea. Needless to say we drank the second bottle the following evening so I had to go get some more. I went to the liquor store by my grams and they had it for $2.99 a bottle between the sale and the coupon. I bought 5 (only because that was all they had on the shelf!). The girls loved it as well, because it was all gone that night.

I’m thinking next i’ll try it as a sangria. Mix in some raspberries/strawberries and use a couple glugs of sweet tea vodka – i’m sure it will be a hit.

You can’t beat a wine that is super easy on the wallet, actually tastes good, and you are happy to share it with others.

Happy sipping!