Yuengling’s Hershey’s chocolate porter

So I’ve wanted all day to do a “Nonprofit Roundup” that talked about the remaining workshops I attended this week and the hygiene kit event that Aspire to Autonomy hosted at Terra Cafe today.

But I am exhausted, so instead you get a review of the Yuengling Hershey’s Chocolate Porter.

Short version: I love Yuengling & I love chocolate beers. Of local craft beers, Twin Rivers Brewing has a really good one. My all time favorite beer is Samuel Smith’s Organic Chocolate Stout.

I found this beer very smooth, enjoyable and easy to drink.

Me with my porter at Three Mugs Pub

My dad likes to come to town to visit Three Mugs Pub and we all love the Shruty’s Burger, a special burger designed by the former owners and my husband and I were the first paying customers to order and eat it.

Ah, the memories.

Today I also tried the mango habanero hot chicken dip, which when my stepmom liked until she got too much in one mouthful and experienced too much spicy heat.

Teenager #2 channeled her inner Griffindor, so she said, when she did my makeup today.

Until tomorrow, friends and followers.

Stroudsburg Saturday Night

It’s a little before 9 a.m. and the creatures in my bedroom, which probably could more accurately be called an aviary as there are more birds sleeping there than people, let me sleep in until almost 7 o’clock.

I have a load of laundry started and I washed and cleaned some floors, with roomba’s help. The cats are fed and the dishes are going.

I had the pleasure of hanging out last night with my good friend Bill, also known as Billy Crash from Crash Palace Productions.

Bill has a horror-themed blog focused on horror movies and I don’t hesitate to say he is an expert on the genre. He was just lamenting last night that he hadn’t seen a movie worthy of inclusion on his “best of” lists since 2016.

To read more of Billy’s work—he has lots of degrees, used to be a college professor and has enough eclectic interests to either intrigue or piss off just about everybody, visit Crash Palace Productions.

I’ve written for him a few times: Search results for me on Bill’s site.

He and his partner-in-crime have a podcast, too.

So, anyway, there I go getting sidetracked again. Bill and I had dinner and drinks last night as I’ve been dying to try Banter’s Hard Cider which is in Stroudsburg, Pa. I think Bill might be their biggest fan.

First of all, being a good cockatoo mama, I got Nala a new toy to entertain her while I was gone.

After Bill and I had the preliminary getting-caught-up chatter, we headed downtown. Stroudsburg is an odd little university town that thanks to the influx of people from higher priced housing markets has struggled with a clear identity in the 40+ years of my life.

Banter’s is a very small establishment with various home-concocted ciders. The service is excellent, the atmosphere jovial and the staff knows their stuff, which in this case is cider.

The first time you visit, Banter’s suggests a tasting flight. They serve the flight from dry to sweet to dessert, and currently one peppery oddball in the middle, Green Drank.

The first selection was Bön, a dry cider with a flavor reminiscent of champagne. Of the unflavored ciders, I prefer Bön to the sweeter more typical Overcast.

The third selection was Jack Horner, so named for the plum in the mix. I enjoyed this definitely more than Overcast, as at this point sweet hard ciders have become a boring norm.

But Green Drank blew them out of the water. It starts as a semi-dry cider with kiwi, jalapeño and bell pepper. It smells peppery, but the spice was milder than it sounds. It was like a tickle in the throat versus full-out heat. Loved it, contemplated bringing home a growler.

But I didn’t. Because I’d have to drink it. And with the stress I’ve been under I didn’t think a growler in the house was a good idea.

Next came Dippins, the salted caramel cider. Delicious. Amazingly delicious. But I don’t think I could drink a whole glass unless I got one of the cocktails where they cut it with chocolate vodka. But… I’m not a fan of vodka. Or chocolate.

That left Deez Coconuts. Probably my second favorite after Green Drank. Coconut and chocolate notes. I couldn’t taste the chocolate, but I didn’t really want to. My favorite beer ever is Samuel Smith’s Organic Chocolate Stout, and I think I prefer my chocolate as stout, not in cider.

As I finished the flight, Bill asked if I had picked my favorite and if I was ready for a glass or a cocktail to which I promptly responded, “Not without dinner.”

So we went to La Morena BBQ, which is Mexican-influenced Portuguese food. And I had a tender, flavorful beef Baracoa sandwich and the French fries Bill has proclaimed the best in Stroudsburg.

Then we returned to Banter’s where I met some of Bill’s friends. It was incredibly delightful to meet Bill’s housemate, because he had told me so many wonderful things about her. The other gentleman was nice, too, but he dissed Eminem and I was too tired to start defending one of my favorite public figures.

Which that might be a great post for another day.

Happy Sunday, everyone!

**This post got interrupted and started again at 11 a.m. as my mom and I had a really lovely coffee date in my kitchen. Hey, Mom. That was really nice. Can we do it again soon?

Two Roads Two Die For and a good friend

I had arranged to meet a good friend at the pub last night. Knowing this would be a hard week, I thought a friend would help remind me that I am defined by more than my roles as employee and mother.

Two Die For

We met at a pub within walking distance of both our homes. The bartender—hearing that I’m a fan of stouts and porters—recommended this Two Roads chocolate raspberry stout Two Die For. And he didn’t even know that my favorite beer ever is Samuel Smith’s organic chocolate stout.

I think I just prefer my chocolate in beer form.

In all seriousness, the raspberry gave it just enough sweet undertones to make it very smooth and refreshing. My friend ordered a Bud Light Lime. We shared some fried pickle chips and buffalo chicken fries (perfect dinner for someone on a no hard or sticky food diet for the next two weeks.)

The stories of work, home, kids and animals began. So many animal stories! Around Christmas, her family lost their dog and her daughter found a rescue dog they recently welcomed into their home.

The rescue agency that saved her offered them a trial with the dog, but my friend’s husband was practical in the matter. “Write the check,” he said, “there’s no way you’re giving this dog back.”

The dog has been perfect for their family and has helped them fill the void of their former dog.

It was a refreshing visit and a great beer.