festivals

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I love any excuse to get out and about in our neighborhood, so when I read about the Dorchester Bike & Brew Fest, despite the fact that I don’t do much biking, I knew I would have to at least stop by.

Dorchester bike

The festival took place on a gorgeous late summer night in Ashmont’s Peabody Square. With the street closed off to traffic, it was the perfect setting for people of all ages to mingle and for kids to run around without parents having to worry about traffic. Dorchester has a huge sense of community, and every time we go to local events, we run into people we know and meet some new friends as well.

Dorchester

The festival centered around bikes and local brews. There was plenty of information on biking in the area, and this cool mobile home took care of the brews. It was a pub-on-wheels for the night, and probably the most popular spot at the festival!

Dorchester Bike and Brew Many great aspects of the community were featured, including local leaders and the Boston Police ice cream  van, which is just a brilliant idea for creating positive experiences with police for kids from an early age. The area around the ice cream van was full of smiles!

Boston Police Ice Cream Truck  

There were a number of food trucks at the festival, but our noses kept bringing us back to Sheherazad where we tucked into fragrant Iraqi red chicken and a fried cauliflower wrap. . . some of the best food I have eaten lately!

sheherazad food truck

Iraqi red chicken

cauliflower wrap

Sitting on the sidewalk eating dinner with the setting sun, laughing neighbors, and live music as the backdrop, I was as happy as can be. It doesn’t take more than great people and simple, delicious food to make my day.

The Bike & Brew Fest was a great time, and while I know logistics can be complicated, I wish it was something that could happen a few times a year.

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Tags: beer, bikes, Boston, community, Dorchester, dot, events, festivals, local beer

little compton, ri   coastal wine festival

What a great day! The Coastal Wine Trail Kickoff was everything I hoped for and more- a total wine, beer, and foodie paradise! Thank you Sakonnet Vineyards!

One thing to note- oh my gosh, grownups are total vultures when it comes to free stuff. I heard more than one person talking about getting their money’s ($40) worth. At 29 I still often feel like a kid, and am always surprised and a little horrified to see adults pushing each other out of the way to get a piece of cheese. . .

Anywho, what a GREAT day! Thank you to Sakonnet Vineyards for hosting the kickoff! It was such an incredibly blue sky, sunny day by the sea, that I think nothing else could compare, though I am willing to attend more events to try :). There were so many stands with food, wine, and beer, and I am going to write a bit about my favorites below, including the winners in my wine awards.

White wine- the overall majority of wines we tasted were white, so I have a couple of favorites:

Sakonnet Vineyards Vidal Blanc, a super drinkable, peachy, delicious white

Greenvale Vineyards Vidal Blanc, also very lovely, slightly drier, but summery white wine. The ladies at the Greenvale booth were very friendly, and I am looking forward to visiting their vineyard soon.

My favorite Rose of the day was easily Travessia Urban Winery from New Bedford, MA. They also offered a stunning, un-oaked chardonnay. Normally I really do not look forward to drinking chardonnay, but this one was exceptional. The Rose has not yet been released, but once it is, I know it will be a star!

Dessert wine - Running Brook Ice Wine. This was sweet, rich, and syrupy, perfect for a dessert wine any time of the year. I really loved tasting the New England winter in this one. A small glass will definitely suffice, as the alcohol content seems quite strong!

Red wine- The easy winner in the red wine award category is Truro Vineyards of Cape Cod. They offered a gorgeous Cabernet Franc (Tasting Notes Cabernet Franc is the signature varietal of Truro Vineyards.  Open vat fermentation, extended maceration and 18 months barrel aging all contribute to rich varietal fruit flavors and herbal tannins.  This tasty dry red wine is best served with beef, pork and varied roasted dishes.) and a Cranberry Red, which would be a perfect fall/winter dessert wine. I loved it!

Sparkling - The only sparkling wine offered at the tasting was Westport Rivers’  which I have tried before and will surely drink again. After the event, we went inside Sakonnet’s tasting room and were offered some of their chardonnay champagne, which I ended up buying for my weekend at the Cape with the girls. It is lovely and tastes of honey and a slightly floral bouquet. I know my friends will love it, and it truly speaks to celebration of any kind!

Beer- By far the stand-out beer of the day was Newport Storm’s amber ale. On top of being offered a generous pour, the staff member at the booth was knowledgeable, friendly, and interesting.  I loved the amber ale, and the hub loved the summer ale. We will be looking for these at local liquor stores like Kappy’s and Martignetti’s.

Food- Great wine has to accompany great food, right? We had a light lunch at the cafe at Sakonnet Vineyards prior to the event- a chicken and tarragon salad wrap, served by some very friendly young ladies. At the event itself, we bought oysters from Sakonnet Oyster Company, and they were briny, salty, plump, and delicious. I am a lover of east coast oysters, and these did not disappoint. The other favorite of the day was the blue goat’s cheese from Westfield Farm which was both salty and sweet and had the perfect goat/blue mix. I will definitely be following up with this cheesemaker to see what else they have to offer.

I have only covered about half of the vendors at this amazing event. A big hats off to Sakonnet vineyards for organizing it so wonderfully. I leave you with some great photos of what was a perfect day.

grapes   

 sakonnet

newport

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Tags: Dining out, events, festivals, Food, foodie, Gourmet food, New England, oysters, Rhode Island, tasting, vineyard, wine

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