Sunday, March 22, 2015

High West Distillery & Saloon - Park City, Utah

High West Burger
Looking for a great place to eat after a heavy day of skiing? Look no further than the High West Distillery located just off the main drag in Park City.  Plan ahead though because this place gets PACKED. My first night in Park City my brother and I tried to eat here at around 7 pm and the distillery had already stopped taking reservations!!! The next day we went for an early meal around 4:40 pm and got in right away- no reservation.

The menu is chock full of all the items you want to see after doing some heavy skiing and cardio- steak, fried chicken, burgers.  I tried the burger and it was awesome.  Cooked to perfection and loaded up with marinated onions and gooey Gruyere, this dish really hit the spot.  And you can tell the fries that come with are homemade because they are crunchy and perfectly salted and taste of fresh, fried potato. However, there are plenty of options for healthy sides as well, like Brussel sprouts and kale.  And don't forget to check out the dessert menu which boasts some delightful creations including a homemade S'more, cobbler, and cheesecake.

One of the real draws to this place is the whiskey which is made and distilled onsite.  If you want to try em' all check out the whiskey flight - an opportunity to try four of their fabulous whiskies.  The best, in my opinion, is the Rendevous Rye which smells of cloves and cinnamon in the nose and feels beautiful going down.

On your way out walk though the hallway where the glass reveals the inner workings of the distillery.  It is cool to see and a process that is much appreciated by a bourbon loving Kentuckian like myself.  Stop at the shops and try out other local places for sure but don't miss out on this little treasure of a distillery!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The Silver Dollar - Louisville, KY

Want a great little place to grab drinks with a friend and also score some awesome food? You're in luck- good drinks meet fine, local food at this little establishment off Frankfort Avenue.  The Silver Dollar at first glance looks like a bar with your basic bar food.  But do not be fooled by the casual ambiance.  The menu is quite substantial and almost all of the beef offerings can be tailored to include grass-fed beef only.  
The Ultimate

On my last visit there I enjoyed "The Ultimate" which is two beef patties with cheese sandwiched in between two grilled cheese sandwiches and finished with fries.  While this meal may have sent my cholesterol soaring it was quite delicious. And they have many other options for lighter fare including salads and sides.  

A drink menu displays their signature cocktails but almost any mixed drink, beer, or wine can be enjoyed here too.  The service is very fast if you come late (around 10-11) but don't expect it to be quite as fast if you come at the dinner hour.   The only downside to this delightful bar is that at peak or busy hours it is almost impossible to hold a conversation as the sound carries and reverberates within this building.  However, if you come later to enjoy some nibbles and a few drinks with friends the ambiance is quiet and relaxing.  This is a great place to eat a late dinner or just hang out.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Old 502 Winery - Louisville, KY

Wine and Kentucky are not two words that are usually uttered in the same sentence.  And yet, last week, somehow I found myself at a Kentucky winery, downtown no less, where I was actually participating in a wine tasting.  I went to the Old 502 with my alumni club to see what alcohol Kentucky had to offer us besides bourbon- I wasn't expecting much.

I was pleasantly surprised by the beautiful tasting room at the Old 502.  It is set up as small gift shop overflowing into the tasting area which is well equipped with a bar and tasting tables adorned with black tablecloths.  I had called ahead with a group reservation and the winery was very prompt about setting up a private table for my group in the back of the room.  Once you are outfitted with the tasting sheets and are seated at the table the wine host starts pouring the wines as quickly or slowly as you can drink them.  They are pretty good about judging your thirst for knowledge...our wine host seemed to know a lot about the bottles she was pouring but was not needlessly interrupting our conversation to make her points either.

All in all we tasted 8 wines for $12 and the wine pourings were fairly lavish.  My favorites were the white wines which were slightly sweet with apricot notes but not cloyingly so.  The reds were good but left something to be desired, at least for me.  The greatest crowd pleaser was the "After Choc"- a dessert wine known for smelling and tasting like a tootsie roll.  It definitely lived up to its reputation and a sip of this wine was like drinking candy.  At the end of the tasting we were able to keep a trademark Old 502 wine glass which was a surprise bonus.

The winery is situated on 10th street so it is a bit off the beaten path but the parking is plentiful.  All wines are blended onsite and are made from local Kentucky wine. The next time you head to downtown and our bourbon-ed out head over to this little place.  It may be the "Old 502" but this winery certainly has a new sense of style and class.