Sunday, February 18, 2018

What-What?! Week of February 18th

So, first:

Inches of snow fell last night -- maybe around 5 inches or so?  We're supposed to get another 1-3 inches before noon as well...  There went all the shopping we were going to do today. :P

We've spent the last five days with the husband's younger brother visiting us.  We sent him back to the Bay Area yesterday afternoon, and did a bunch of stuff while he was here.

One of the things we did was go hiking again at Lord Hill park; we'd been meaning to do this for quite a while, and since it wasn't too wet that day, we decided to go for it.

One of the main features of the park is big trees with holes in the middle:
Thumbs up!

"Uncle Johnny, you're so silly!"

You'll recognize this picture from the last time we were here -- I took an almost identical one then, too.

Lots of ferns, as usual.

This tree is being dismantled by wood peckers.

Trees growing out of other trees -- lots of this too!

Osric was pretty grumpy by this point in the hike, and decided that this tree branch was stupid.  As far as I can tell, he just doesn't like hiking very much.

This portion was pretty muddy in parts.

Reading the map.

Walkin' with Uncle Johnny.

I have lots more photos from our trip to the Funko store, which I will post next week. :)

Sunday, February 11, 2018

What-What?! Week of February 11th

Alright, so this week let's talk about hard cider.  Now my husband can't drink beer, as the hops makes him sick, so I don't have any in my house.  On account of this, it's all hard cider, wine, and spirits, with hard cider being what we drink most often.

Last week, the husband and I picked up some new cider from a local liquor store (the nearest Bevmo is in Seattle or Redmond -- too far), because we wanted to try something new.

I like my hard ciders on the dry side; many ciders are way, way too sweet for me.  Beyond that, I like a nice, full-bodied cider with a lot of apple flavor.

Angry Orchard Old Fashioned
From the manufacturer: The Old Fashioned is made with a blend of American apples and is aged on oak with dried tart cherries, California grown navel orange peel, and charred bourbon barrel staves, offering citrus and cherry aromas with a bright apple flavor and slight vanilla notes. It has lasting tannins and a full, round mouthfeel.

In Short: Current favorite

In Long: This is my current favorite hard cider; it's a nice balance of not-too-sweet, not-too-dry.  The oaky-woodiness is a lovely counter to the apple flavor.  Wish you could taste the orange and cherry a bit more, though.

Washington Gold Cider Golden Delicious
From the manufacturer: Bright and crisp with a touch of golden sweetness, our Golden Delicious Cider is the first flavor we’ve offered in 12 ounce cans. Let yourself be transported back to a time when classic apple varieties dotted the orchards and crisp, sweet apples were the afternoon snack of choice.

In Short: Bit too sweet, very nice apple flavor; second favorite

In Long: This is my current second favorite, and has the best apple flavor of anything on this list -- it really is very reminiscent of fresh apples.  It is a bit too sweet, but honestly when you have it with a meal, it's perfectly fine.  I would really like to try this company's original variety, but I don't recall having had seen it at the store.  The apples for this cider are grown north of Wenatchee, right on the edge of the Wenatchee National Forest.

Tieton Cider Works Apricot Cider
From the manufacturer: Crisp apple cider infused with just the perfect amount of apricot. Expect a perfect level of apple tartness coupled by the dry and fresh flavors of apricot. The marriage of these two fruits makes for the perfect cider. Not too sweet, yet not too dry – perfectly balanced.

In Short: Nice apricot flavor, quite dry

In Long: This is a local brand, made from apples grown in the Yakima valley.  It is quite a bit dryer than anything else on this list, but has a really lovely flavor.  I would prefer something a bit sweeter, but overall this is perfectly drinkable.

Angry Orchard Green Apple
From the manufacturer: Angry Orchard Green Apple has a bright, fresh apple aroma, with notes of honeydew melon and kiwi. This cider is slightly tart with balanced sweetness, reminiscent of a fresh green apple.

In Short: WTH happened to it?!

In Long:  I could swear up and down that Angry Orchard changed the flavoring for this cider.  It used to be my favorite before their Old Fashioned variety, but we picked up a case recently, and it's actually pretty gross.  We used to like this one specifically because it wasn't as sweet as Angry Orchard's main cider variety (Crisp Apple), and had a mild green apple flavor.  Now, it's like eating green apple candy -- has that fake flavor, and is much too sweet.