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GOODBYE, IRMA! ISLAMORADA BEER COMPANY TAKING DONATIONS OF SUPPLIES, CLOTHING, FOOD TO BENEFIT LOWER KEYS; SEE BELOW;
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Monday, June 29, 2015

All Aboard! Two Henrys Brewing Company: Don't Miss This Stop!

I've been spending a lot of time recently travelling between North Florida and Tampa for various events (things just worked out that way, and it hasn't been strictly beer-related!). Have you ever driven by a particular exit or place and thought: "I really have to stop there one of these times"?  There's a brewery just off of I-4 in Plant City, between Lakeland and Tampa that's been one of those places for me.  Last week, I finally made the stop at Two Henrys Brewing Company.  



Saturday, June 27, 2015

Freedom for the 64 oz Growler!

When I moved here four years ago, I tried to get a refill on a half-gallon (64 oz.) growler that relocated here with me from Northwest Indiana, just outside of Chicago. I mean, what's the big deal; they're everywhere in the Midwest and elsewhere.  No, I was told, can't do that. At first I thought it was because the growler was some kind of out-of-state alien, that needed proof of state residency. Well, we all know the story.....


Thursday, June 25, 2015

Ready to "Flip Flop Til You Drop"?

Walk it or ride it.  Enjoy food and drink specials. Support local St. Augustine Beach businesses.  And, last but not least, support a local charity.  Grab your special t-shirt -- then put your creative touches on it -- put on your flip-flops, and get ready to "Flip Flop Til You Drop"!


Thursday, June 11, 2015

Point Ybel Brewing: Head to the "Hurricane Hole" After a Tough Day at the Beach (or, anytime)

As you might know, I recently spent a few days on Sanibel Island in Southwest Florida, just over the causeway from Fort Myers. I had heard about the beaches and the seashells and the gorgeous color of the water on the gulf side. And, lately, we have been hearing more and more about the beer and new breweries in this part of the state. So, in true journalistic fashion, this beachgirl did some research: Yes, I had some "tough" days at the beach looking at that water and walking the seemingly endless stretches, all while watching the shorebirds and investigating the abundance of seashells. I even came up with some beach-and-beer photos that I posted on social media sites (that all takes work, y'know). But, at the end of the day, you just need a beer! So, on one particular day, I headed over the causeway toward Fort Myers and onward to Point Ybel Brewing Company. It was a fairly easy drive (hey, I'm on vacation).  The brewery is located in a small shopping center and is visible from the street.  


Monday, June 8, 2015

It's June: Time for the Stanley Cup Final. Or, This Blackhawks Fan Goes to Tampa For More Than Beer!

Stanley Cup Final 2015
I've been a Chicago Blackhawks hockey fan since I was a kid.  I grew up in Northwest Indiana, just outside of Chicago and made the work commute (Metra and South Shore train lines) into the city for a number of years.  I lived in the area until four years ago, when the "Indiana Snowbelt" got the better of me, and the long-contemplated move-to-the-Sunshine-State eventually happened. 

A few weeks ago, over a few beers (you knew I would throw that in sooner rather than later, c'mon), thoughts turned to "what if the Blackhawks played the Lightning in the Stanley Cup; could that happen?" If so, a definite trip to Tampa, no question! (Not like I really need an excuse -- other than beer -- to make the relatively short 3.5 hour drive over here).  Well, the Playoffs produced a series of close games and OT games, with the end result being Lightning v. Blackhawks in the Final. Really? WooHoo! Tampa, here we come!   Another trip from North Florida on the east coast to the gulf coast....


Tuesday, June 2, 2015

First Magnitude Brewing Springs onto the Florida Beer Map

When First Magnitude Brewing Co. in Gainesville sprang onto the Florida craft beer scene last year (opening in August 2014), you had to wonder what was behind the name and logo. That's a story in itself. 

Visit the brewery's website, or even better yet -- visit the brewery itself -- and you learn that North Central Florida is home to the "First Magnitude" Springs, some of the most dynamic freshwater springs in the world.   And, what's more, a glance up in the sky reveals the brightest star, called a "first magnitude" star. Drawing from these concepts, the brewery's mermaid logo combines the celestial with the marine. The brewery's website links to Florida's Springs, where you can learn more about the natural phenomenon. (Now, go back to my lead sentence....see what I did there?)