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TheFanatic

Going to Ireland for a couple days. Never been to Europe. What do I need to know?

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14 minutes ago, Copeman said:

And if you didn't already know, you will need a voltage converter power adapter so you can safely plug your stuff up.

Got one sitting new in the box next to my suitcase. Thanks GB

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For all it's big business trappings, Guinness is a Protestant beverage.  As you go west and south of Dublin, it couldn't hurt to order Harp, the Catholic alternative.  

YIC,

Moonga-tirty

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56 minutes ago, Copeman said:

They're pretty big on Murphys as well.  It's a cheap Guinness, but its good.

I love Murphy's. Don't mind a Harp either. I don't choose my beverage based on religious affinity. 

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On 6/26/2018 at 2:56 PM, TheFanatic said:

I'm pretty much aiming for a window seat. Any window seat. Just to be able to lean over and snooze. If not, I'm likely going the nap first route. 

Call the airline now about seat assignment. The flight is likely overbooked and you don't have a seat. 

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13 hours ago, Redwes25 said:

Call the airline now about seat assignment. The flight is likely overbooked and you don't have a seat. 

Good call. I'll do that today. 

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On 6/26/2018 at 0:54 PM, msommer said:

ETA: If you can check in electronically (usually possible up to 48 hours before your flight, at least it should be possible 24 hrs before) do so and get the least bad seat available

OK, I've gotten my seat situation handled. Cost me $75 each way to get an aisle seat over the ocean. Worth every, tax deductible, cent! And as of right now, less than a week out, I've got nobody sitting next to me. Ohhhhh, how great would that be?

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On 6/29/2018 at 6:07 PM, gianmarco said:

Have fun!

I hope to. I just hope that I'm not heading to Ireland for 4 straight days of Jet Lag

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A few thoughts on Dublin:

Just about the entire city is walkable. 

Loads of Americans around. 

The Guinness Storeroom was cool. It was more like a museum than any brewery tour I've been on and focused a lot on the history. 

The Jameson tour was not worth it, imo.  Three 15 minute presentations, 3 shots, and you're out. 

Temple Bar felt like a tourist trap to me.  Expensive and packed. 

Soccer is called soccer, not football.  Football is Gaelic football and for real men.

World cup games were a blast here. Large Brazilian contingent in town. 

My favorite bar was Lord Edward's.  The barman there was a lot of fun. 

The fish and chips shop attached to Lord Edward's was the best I've had and the portions are huge. 

Trinity college was cool but if you're going to go on the book of kells your, book online before you go.  The line is much shorter. PS - The book of kells was just meh but the library at the end was maybe the coolest thing I've seen. 

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19 hours ago, Kanil said:

A few thoughts on Dublin:

Just about the entire city is walkable. 

Loads of Americans around. 

The Guinness Storeroom was cool. It was more like a museum than any brewery tour I've been on and focused a lot on the history. 

The Jameson tour was not worth it, imo.  Three 15 minute presentations, 3 shots, and you're out. 

Temple Bar felt like a tourist trap to me.  Expensive and packed. 

Soccer is called soccer, not football.  Football is Gaelic football and for real men.

World cup games were a blast here. Large Brazilian contingent in town. 

My favorite bar was Lord Edward's.  The barman there was a lot of fun. 

The fish and chips shop attached to Lord Edward's was the best I've had and the portions are huge. 

Trinity college was cool but if you're going to go on the book of kells your, book online before you go.  The line is much shorter. PS - The book of kells was just meh but the library at the end was maybe the coolest thing I've seen. 

This is outstanding info. 

I hate tourist trap bars. If I walked up to the Temple bar and it was packed, I would've found someplace else. I'll check out Lord Edward's for all those reasons you mentioned. 

I was on the fence on Book of Kells. Thinking the Dublin castle instead. 

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One more question for those that have been. What should I be looking for in the shops to get the wife and kids that will fit in the luggage? I'm bad at shopping for the fam while traveling. For my kids I used to run by the dollar store when I got home and pick them up stuff. 

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20 hours ago, TheFanatic said:

One more question for those that have been. What should I be looking for in the shops to get the wife and kids that will fit in the luggage? I'm bad at shopping for the fam while traveling. For my kids I used to run by the dollar store when I got home and pick them up stuff. 

How old are your kids? My son is 7 and I picked him up an Irish Republic soccer Jersey for €10.

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Be there for just over two weeks starting in late September. Only thing I don't have covered is Newgrange. Will try to arrange it, but just don't know if time will allow. Bus and taxi from Dublin, then 2.5 hours for the tour itself. Sounds like maybe a 5 hour thing overall from downtown Dublin.

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Day 2 in Dublin. Landed yesterday at 7 am. Flight was brutal. There was an infant 10 feet from who was abnormally loud (more on that in a sec). He finally settled down about an hour after they turned the lights off. Then the guy directly in front of me started coughing. I got maybe an hour of sleep on the flight. After we land and everyone stands up to grab carry on luggage and I find out it wasn’t one infant. It was twin infants! Checked in, ironed some clothes and tried to take a nap. Walls here are thin. Maybe slept an hour.

I walked the city for about 2 hours and then came back for a shower. The long hot shower was a mistake. That wiped me out. Getting to the event at 4 helped a lot. Having something to focus on was huge. Shot the scene till about 8:30. Went back to the hotel. Was planning on hitting a pub but Belgium was playing Brazil. Everywhere was packed. Like huge crowds outside every pub just hanging out. Settled on the pub in the hotel. The bartender really knew his whisky and the selection was great so it worked out well. I hung out there till 10:30 before crashing.

today was more walking around and a little shopping then had some special tour of the Guinness brewery. Now back at the hotel resting/charging the phone and then back down for my second day of Meatopia UK.

I fly out tomorrow at 9. I should be home by 5 there but it will feel like 11 to me. Any jet lag tricks for going back the other way?

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So going to Europe for the weekend was the coolest and dumbest thing I've ever done. I'm glad I got to experience Europe but the Jet lag is a killer. First two days are basically travelling and exhaustion. Third day was great followed by a day of travel and then a couple more days of exhaustion. 

I explained to my handlers that next year needed and extra day on either side of the event to do this right. Also, next year myself and my coworker won't be as constricted on what days we can take off due to huge projects at work that involve lots of blackout dates for days off. Otherwise I would've stuck around for a few more days. 

Am I glad I did it? Yes. Would I do it again? Not a chance. Not on that time frame. 

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9 minutes ago, TheFanatic said:

So going to Europe for the weekend was the coolest and dumbest thing I've ever done. I'm glad I got to experience Europe but the Jet lag is a killer. First two days are basically travelling and exhaustion. Third day was great followed by a day of travel and then a couple more days of exhaustion. 

I explained to my handlers that next year needed and extra day on either side of the event to do this right. Also, next year myself and my coworker won't be as constricted on what days we can take off due to huge projects at work that involve lots of blackout dates for days off. Otherwise I would've stuck around for a few more days. 

Am I glad I did it? Yes. Would I do it again? Not a chance. Not on that time frame. 

Wuss

:P

 

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1 hour ago, TheFanatic said:

So going to Europe for the weekend was the coolest and dumbest thing I've ever done. I'm glad I got to experience Europe but the Jet lag is a killer. First two days are basically travelling and exhaustion. Third day was great followed by a day of travel and then a couple more days of exhaustion. 

I explained to my handlers that next year needed and extra day on either side of the event to do this right. Also, next year myself and my coworker won't be as constricted on what days we can take off due to huge projects at work that involve lots of blackout dates for days off. Otherwise I would've stuck around for a few more days. 

Am I glad I did it? Yes. Would I do it again? Not a chance. Not on that time frame. 

I'd go back in a heartbeat.  If you need an assistant to like, hold camera lenses or taste test something, let me know.

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1 hour ago, msommer said:

Wuss

:P

 

I feel like one. It was basically 1 day of not being absolutely exhausted sandwiched in between 2 days of complete exhaustion plus 10 hours in a plane each way. 

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18 minutes ago, Kanil said:

I'd go back in a heartbeat.  If you need an assistant to like, hold camera lenses or taste test something, let me know.

Right now that guy is my dad. He didn't go along on this trip because the ticket was so much but he went with me to Memphis back in May and Denver last month and will be heading with me to KC in Sept. It's pretty sweet to get paid to do this kind of stuff and have my dad along with me. He's in his 70's so no clue how much longer he keeps this up. Once he decides to bow out, I'll let you know. 

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2 minutes ago, TheFanatic said:

I feel like one. It was basically 1 day of not being absolutely exhausted sandwiched in between 2 days of complete exhaustion plus 10 hours in a plane each way. 

I used to do that #### all the time. Not any more

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3 minutes ago, TheFanatic said:

Right now that guy is my dad. He didn't go along on this trip because the ticket was so much but he went with me to Memphis back in May and Denver last month and will be heading with me to KC in Sept. It's pretty sweet to get paid to do this kind of stuff and have my dad along with me. He's in his 70's so no clue how much longer he keeps this up. Once he decides to bow out, I'll let you know. 

If Jeff Galouli happens to hurt your dad's knee a few weeks before the next trip, I'll gladly take his place.

 

 

PS - For no particular reason at all, could you PM me your dad's address?

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26 minutes ago, msommer said:

I used to do that #### all the time. Not any more

I can see knocking this out no problem at 25. Not so much at 45. 

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21 minutes ago, Kanil said:

If Jeff Galouli happens to hurt your dad's knee a few weeks before the next trip, I'll gladly take his place.

 

 

PS - For no particular reason at all, could you PM me your dad's address?

Sure thing. Check your in box. 

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Just now, TheFanatic said:

I can see knocking this out no problem at 25. Not so much at 45. 

As you get older and wiser you take better precautions. Such as noise canceling earphones and earplugs. sleep masks. Getting extra legroom, don't watch videos, read instead on your kindle, try not to eat on the plane, eat a light time zone appropriate meal whe you arrive etc.

Can still be done. But it ain't any kind of fun.

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Heading to Dublin and Edinburgh in early August...

Any must-hit bars/pubs that the FBGs recommend? Like off the beaten path (not on a Google top 10 list or Rick Steves latest book)

Welcoming any advice!

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Not sure if this has been covered but DUB airport is a bit unique in that you clear US Customs before departure. 

That's good because it's one less thing to worry about when arriving back in the US after a long flight.  What's bad is I had to chug my Guinness in the airport bar because we had less time for boarding than we expected.

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16 hours ago, Eephus said:

Not sure if this has been covered but DUB airport is a bit unique in that you clear US Customs before departure. 

That's good because it's one less thing to worry about when arriving back in the US after a long flight.  What's bad is I had to chug my Guinness in the airport bar because we had less time for boarding than we expected.

Yep. There are two entirely different sets of security to go through. The airport security which is pretty laid back, then the US Customs security. The good news is, you only have to take off your shoes once. Also, if you have a bottle of water or soda that you bought after the first round, you can take that on the plane. But be ready to do double security checks before you can really settle in before your flight. 

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You've given us more details about the children sitting by you on the airplane than you have about the meat event you attended or the beer you drank.  How was the Guinness event? 

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15 minutes ago, Brony said:

You've given us more details about the children sitting by you on the airplane than you have about the meat event you attended or the beer you drank.  How was the Guinness event? 

The event was smaller than what I expected. I'm used to covering events where 9 teams of pitmasters each cook a few tons of meat. This deal had a limited amount of tickets sold for each day. A few hundred people at any given time as opposed to 25,000 in one day that I'm used to. 

The "BBQ" was not entirely traditional American fare. A couple people were somewhat traditional, but for the most part it was really outstanding chefs doing what they normally do in a restaurant kitchen outside over open fire with large hunks of meat.

All the chefs I met were fantastic. Once they figured out what my role was they went from great people to good friends. See, they hooked us up with just VIP passes like everyone else so we just looked like event attendees who were overly pushy with the cams. It was pretty funny the next day. The first day I tried to explain what I was doing there and they all sort of nodded and mumbled, "that's great," but they were busy so they didn't really pay much attention and didn't at all help me or my fellow promoters get any good shots. So I posted pics of a bunch of their food and tagged GuinnessUS and the chef who's dish was in the pic on day one. After day one ended, all these cooks went back to hotels and checked their phones and saw their accounts blowing up and found where I had tagged them. When I got there on day two there was an entirely different story. Now all of them are inviting me behind the gates, handing me food, handing me beer, staging pics for me. I had only planned on being there an hour or two on day two but now I was in my element again and it was just too much fun (see my Instagram feed and the video of the people chugging beers out of beef bones). 

As far as the beer, I never realized how much we screw up Guinness in this country. We serve it too cold, don't let it settle and in general wreck an amazing beer. I haven't had any since we got back, but I'm wondering if that amazing freshness I had over there will ruin it over here for me. Sort of the reason I haven't had any here. I drank beer that was bottled (or kegged as it were) the day before. Other than putting my mouth under a spigot coming out of a 10,000 gallon vat, there is no way to have any fresher beer. 

I will say that I had a huge let down moment. I had wanted to go into a pub and order a "pint of the black stuff." On the tour the tour guide said that while it's called the black or the black stuff, it's actually deep, deep red. So later on, I'm at the St. James Open Gate Brewery Pub on site at the Guinness Brewery and ask for a pint of the black and the bartender had no Idea what I was talking about. Admittedly they had 10 beers on the board, 7 of them were brand new and made just for this event and may never be made again. But I walked into an Irish pub and ordered a pint of the black and they looked at me blank faced. 

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That sounds like a cool opportunity and great way to meet chefs - good for you!!  Did you ever think 4 years ago that you'd be doing something like that? 

On Guinness, I echo a lot of your thoughts.  I was in Ireland and asked for a black and tan and the bartender was all confused.  A second bartender chimed in and offered to help.  Second bartender: "I'm from Detroit, where in the states are you from?"   I've never ordered a black and tan since then.   

I've found that Guinness poured from one of the big cans into a glass is still pretty GD good.  

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2 hours ago, Brony said:

That sounds like a cool opportunity and great way to meet chefs - good for you!!  Did you ever think 4 years ago that you'd be doing something like that? 

On Guinness, I echo a lot of your thoughts.  I was in Ireland and asked for a black and tan and the bartender was all confused.  A second bartender chimed in and offered to help.  Second bartender: "I'm from Detroit, where in the states are you from?"   I've never ordered a black and tan since then.   

I've found that Guinness poured from one of the big cans into a glass is still pretty GD good.  

For me it's not about meeting chefs. It's about meeting brands. I was introduced to the Brand Manager for Guinness and the guy that owns the account for the PR firm that flew me out. Those were huge things for my business. I have the audience. What I need are people who will pay me to put their product in front of that audience. 

Four years ago I was doing work with some nice brands on my blog, making some nice spending money when I read about people who grew their Instagram accounts and one in particular got flown to Bahrain to post pics of it on IG. That was hugely motivating to me. Four years later I made that a reality for myself. 

The number of bucket list items I have checked off in the last four years because of this side hustle is so large, I'm going to have to come up with an entirely new list because there isn't much left on my original list. Owning a Ferrari is on the list. I bet I make that happen. The Shelby Cobra is probably out of reach, but I bet a Ferrari isn't. 

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3 hours ago, TheFanatic said:

As far as the beer, I never realized how much we screw up Guinness in this country. We serve it too cold, don't let it settle and in general wreck an amazing beer. I haven't had any since we got back, but I'm wondering if that amazing freshness I had over there will ruin it over here for me. Sort of the reason I haven't had any here. I drank beer that was bottled (or kegged as it were) the day before. Other than putting my mouth under a spigot coming out of a 10,000 gallon vat, there is no way to have any fresher beer.  

I've had the same experience with Guinness.  Most bars over here keep all the keg lines at the same temperature, which is too cold for Guinness.  I've found some places that try to be close to authentic Irish pubs that do it right, but they are definitely the rare exception.

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@TheFanatic Can you describe the pork belly ribs and the process to make that happen?  I have a feeling this will happen at my house in the next few weeks.

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4 minutes ago, Kanil said:

@TheFanatic Can you describe the pork belly ribs and the process to make that happen?  I have a feeling this will happen at my house in the next few weeks.

Basically back ribs with all the meat up to the skin left in tact. Then he dry aged it for three weeks, then cured it for a few days, then he marinated it for another day. Then he cooked them near open coals (not right on top), then finished them skin side down over the coals to crackle the skin. And I'm sure I missed about 4 steps because when he told it to me, the irish lilt and the beers in my belly hindered the communication process. His name is Niall Davidson. You could probably ask him directly on IG. They were insane. Oh, and he drizzled over this almost clear sauce that was amazing. Pork belly craklin ribs!

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14 minutes ago, Don Quixote said:

I've had the same experience with Guinness.  Most bars over here keep all the keg lines at the same temperature, which is too cold for Guinness.  I've found some places that try to be close to authentic Irish pubs that do it right, but they are definitely the rare exception.

I have four beer fridges. Two are unused in the garage. I could take one of those, set it to 45 and make it a Guinness fridge. 

The reason I have 4 (I feel the need to explain this so I don't sound like any more of a lush than I am). Before we bought this house, I had a beer fridge in the basement. The house had one built into a wet bar in the much better basement. It also had one all covered in mold in the mud room. It works great. Just needed to be cleaned. Then I got paid to promote a beer fridge on IG so I got sent a fourth one. We use the two in the garage for side dishes for parties and leave them unplugged the other 360 days a year. 

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1 hour ago, TheFanatic said:

Basically back ribs with all the meat up to the skin left in tact. Then he dry aged it for three weeks, then cured it for a few days, then he marinated it for another day. Then he cooked them near open coals (not right on top), then finished them skin side down over the coals to crackle the skin. And I'm sure I missed about 4 steps because when he told it to me, the irish lilt and the beers in my belly hindered the communication process. His name is Niall Davidson. You could probably ask him directly on IG. They were insane. Oh, and he drizzled over this almost clear sauce that was amazing. Pork belly craklin ribs!

Ugh.  I don't know where I'd get the ribs with the meat to the skin left in tact.  Think a local butcher would do that for me?

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3 hours ago, TheFanatic said:

For me it's not about meeting chefs. It's about meeting brands. I was introduced to the Brand Manager for Guinness and the guy that owns the account for the PR firm that flew me out. Those were huge things for my business. I have the audience. What I need are people who will pay me to put their product in front of that audience. 

Four years ago I was doing work with some nice brands on my blog, making some nice spending money when I read about people who grew their Instagram accounts and one in particular got flown to Bahrain to post pics of it on IG. That was hugely motivating to me. Four years later I made that a reality for myself. 

The number of bucket list items I have checked off in the last four years because of this side hustle is so large, I'm going to have to come up with an entirely new list because there isn't much left on my original list. Owning a Ferrari is on the list. I bet I make that happen. The Shelby Cobra is probably out of reach, but I bet a Ferrari isn't. 

You're too tall to comfortably fit in a Ferrari.

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2 hours ago, TheFanatic said:

Basically back ribs with all the meat up to the skin left in tact. Then he dry aged it for three weeks, then cured it for a few days, then he marinated it for another day. Then he cooked them near open coals (not right on top), then finished them skin side down over the coals to crackle the skin. And I'm sure I missed about 4 steps because when he told it to me, the irish lilt and the beers in my belly hindered the communication process. His name is Niall Davidson. You could probably ask him directly on IG. They were insane. Oh, and he drizzled over this almost clear sauce that was amazing. Pork belly craklin ribs!

HA! That cut I can get any supermarket I go to. Dirt cheap too, particularly around X-mas time

Will definitely try that, once I figure out the technical bit about dry aging!

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On 7/11/2018 at 5:08 PM, Trey said:

Heading to Dublin and Edinburgh in early August...

Any must-hit bars/pubs that the FBGs recommend? Like off the beaten path (not on a Google top 10 list or Rick Steves latest book)

Welcoming any advice!

Post when you get back. We have a couple free nights there in September and definitely want to hit some good pubs.

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On 7/11/2018 at 4:08 PM, Trey said:

Heading to Dublin and Edinburgh in early August...

Any must-hit bars/pubs that the FBGs recommend? Like off the beaten path (not on a Google top 10 list or Rick Steves latest book)

Welcoming any advice!

Edinburgh is a great city.

I was there 5 or 6 years ago. I suggestion using Chowhounds and Eater for restaurant recommendations. Those are usually my go to for finding less touristy stuff.

Edited by Bucky86
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I ordered a bourbon and coke and the eventually the confused bartender gave me a shot and a can of coke. 

Nobody ever talks about the seafood but I ordered seafood all over Ireland and it was awesome. 

Best experience I had was in the town of dingle on the dingle peninsula. Just a bar but I had ordered a beer and was chilling. They were serving these big bowls of mussels steamed and served with a white wine and cream broth. Came with a big hunk of soda bread. Had to go sit on the curb after and get my head together. 

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17 hours ago, Kanil said:

Ugh.  I don't know where I'd get the ribs with the meat to the skin left in tact.  Think a local butcher would do that for me?

That's your only option

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12 hours ago, Jackstraw said:

I ordered a bourbon and coke and the eventually the confused bartender gave me a shot and a can of coke. 

I once asked if the place I was at (which was a decently upscale restaurant/bar) if it had any specialty cocktails, and the response was a "uh, not really, I guess we could do an Irish coffee."

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55 minutes ago, Don Quixote said:

I once asked if the place I was at (which was a decently upscale restaurant/bar) if it had any specialty cocktails, and the response was a "uh, not really, I guess we could do an Irish coffee."

Wouldn't it just be called a coffee there?

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On 7/12/2018 at 9:47 PM, TheFanatic said:

Basically back ribs with all the meat up to the skin left in tact. Then he dry aged it for three weeks, then cured it for a few days, then he marinated it for another day. Then he cooked them near open coals (not right on top), then finished them skin side down over the coals to crackle the skin. And I'm sure I missed about 4 steps because when he told it to me, the irish lilt and the beers in my belly hindered the communication process. His name is Niall Davidson. You could probably ask him directly on IG. They were insane. Oh, and he drizzled over this almost clear sauce that was amazing. Pork belly craklin ribs!

Got the dry age bags now, planning to do this (ready) on the 25th august.

Any idea about the marinade, from the taste?

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