Almost Time to Hit the Road to Bacon Fest!

The Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival is this weekend and I can’t wait to get on the road. Sadly this year I will not make it to any of the weekday events since I am only staying for a long weekend. But! That doesn’t mean you have to miss out on them. Check out the list bellow of the bacon goodness the Iowa Bacon Board have planned.

  • Tuesday, February 22
    Bacon Elegance Dinner

    Catering DSM
    Capital Square (Big City Burger & Greens Location)
    400 Locust St.
    Des Moines, IA 50309

    Description: All tickets to this event must be purchased by Friday, Feb. 18. The luxurious evening begins at 6:30 PM and includes a 5 course menu with drink pairings.

  • Wednesday, February 23

    Makin’ Bacon at Home Day

    Your House

    Description: Everyone can participate in the fun. Go to your local grocer and buy a pound of your favorite bacon. Fry it, bake it or grill it…just please don’t nuke it. Feel free to share your bacon experience on the Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival Facebook wall.

  • Thursday, February 24

    Bacon Queen Contest

    Johnny’s Hall of Fame
    302 Court St.
    Des Moines, IA 50309-2210

    Description: From 6 PM to 10 PM munch on free bacon samples, take back $2 cans of Coors, Coors Light and Pabst Blue Ribbon and vote for the woman that will proudly represent all the great attributes of bacon at the Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival. Winner of the Bacon Queen contest will receive two free tickets to the festival on Saturday.

  • Friday, February 25

    Day of the Sleeping Pig

    At Your House

    Description: This is a day dedicated to rest and preparation for the Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival. Remove all tight fitting jewelry and drink plenty of water. Locate your favorite bacon haiku to share with your friends, put on a bacony t-shirt and get excited that you’re in Iowa during the culmination of Bacon Week!

  • Saturday, February 26

    4th Annual Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival presented by Beggin’ Strips® Fields of Bacon…If You Fry It, They Will Come

    Capital Square (Big City Burger & Greens Location)
    400 Locust St.
    Des Moines, IA 50309

    Description: The nation’s premiere bacon festival begins at 10 AM and goes until 4 PM. Attendees will experience a place where bacon enthusiasts can truly explore and express their love for bacon in a fun, imaginative and supportive atmosphere. OHHHH, BACON!

Later this week I am going to have a post talking about how you can follow this years adventure into bacon country. You can start following the preparation for the trip on twitter by searching for the hash tag #brbf4.

Bacon LIVE: More like Random LIVE

This week’s show was more random then usual, but to some fans thats not a bad thing. Yes thats right, there are some people that say some of our best shows are the ones where we are off-topic. We are not sure why it happens but I guess some weeks bacon is not the first thing on our minds.

Next week should prove to be different. Since the Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival is that weekend, we will have a ton of bacon stuff to talk about. This is my four year going to the festival and I can’t wait to see how there going to wow me this year.

Go to BaconLIVE.com to learn how to subscribe, call the show, and watch us live Wednesdays at 7pm ET!

Watch the live video recording on uStream.tv!

Caribou Coffee’s Turkey Bacon: FAIL!

What’s for breakfast?

It looks like everyone is really trying to get a piece of that breakfast money. Everywhere you look some restaurant is busting out new menu items. McDonalds has oatmeal, Wendy’s is toying around with the idea of a breakfast bar, Burger King revamped their entire breakfast campaign, and Subway now has breakfast subs.

The latest to get in on this is Caribou Coffee. They are the second biggest coffee chain in the country and I guess they figured, if people are stopping here in the morning already we might as well sell them some eggs.

They are introducing a line of typical uninspired breakfast sandwiches. The only difference and I can only imagine that some marking tool somewhere thought this would be a good selling point is they have turkey bacon and turkey sausage.

Seriously why the heck would I want to waste my hard earned money on something like this? I know they are going for the more health oriented people by having turkey bacon and claiming each sandwich is around 300 calories but lets be honest anybody worried about eating right for breakfast is buying fruit not a fried egg sandwich.

This thing needs to fail but unfortunately it wont because most of the people I know that visit these types of coffee houses just blindly believe anything they hear and the rumor that turkey bacon is better for you than regular has been floating around since its invention.

To make matters worse it’s $4 for a combo including one sandwich and one medium coffee. No hash brown and they couldn’t even be nice enough to make it a large coffee. I for one will not be partaking in the new Caribou Coffee breakfast menu.

By Sean Brett

Southern Tier Imperial “Choklat” Stout, a Valentines Day Treat

Today is Valentines Day, and single or paired, a fantastic excuse to drink a good beer is at hand. If celebrating this Hallmark holiday, think twice before rushing to the drug store to frantically grab that last dusty box of chocolates. This year, why not consider buying your sweetie chocolate in liquid form?

I’ve been bombarded with chocolatey beer options this past week. In Pittsburgh, we are truly lucky to have several local breweries providing options (East End Brewery’s Chocolate Covered Cherry Stout and Penn Brewery’s Chocolate Meltdown Stout come to mind). One of my favorite breweries, Southern Tier, has a chocolate-inspired selection, and since they brew my favorite beer of all time (Southern Tier Pumking) I was excited to try it.

Southern Tier Choklat, available as a draft and in 22oz bottles, is best served slightly warmer than your average beer (48 degrees) in a snifter glass. It is a very pretty, romantic looking beer, pouring almost black with very small caramel colored head ringing the glass. The aroma coming off this one is simply one-dimensional….you guessed it….CHOCOLATE! It smells unbelievably chocolate, reminiscent of chocolate syrup (really).

The mouthfeel for Choklat is very smooth, creamy, but not sticky. The upfront taste is roasted chocolate (is that possible?). This taste is quickly followed with the burning, biting flavor you’d expect from a beer with 11%ABV. These are two extremely different tastes butting heads in one glass, and it creates a surprisingly balanced drink.

Overall, the range in tastes from dark chocolate to biting alcohol does not make a particularly drinkable beer, but listen, maybe on Valentines Day you should stop at ONE! It’s much like a very rich chocolate dessert: it’s heartbreakingly delicious, but after one serving you are more than happy to just sit back and bask in a glorious sugar coma.

By Beth Kerr

Bacon LIVE: String Theory Proves Bacon is Everywhere!

Last nights show was a classic grab bag of topics. Sean and I bounced around from topic to topic finally ending up at a debate about String Theory (Sean against it and me open to it). Since none of us where expects on String Theory, some how we decided that it proved bacon was everywhere at all times. Luckily we could bot agree on that.

The more important thing brought up was that Japan has bacon Doritos and we don’t. Whats up with that? If you happen to work for Frito-Lay and can explain to me why this is, please contact me ASAP! This needs to be fixed.

Go to BaconLIVE.com to learn how to subscribe, call the show, and watch us live Wednesdays at 7pm ET!

Watch the live video recording on uStream.tv!

Great Lakes Brewing Co, Christmas Ale

So Christmas is over and I am well aware. I have packed up our bacon tree and taken down our bacon-filled stockings. You may find, however, that stores everywhere still have Christmas beers loud and proud, up front and on sale, giving you an opportunity to try some you may have missed for a discounted price.

I used to really look forward to holiday beers. I love all things pine, and holiday beers usually do not disappoint with my aroma and taste of choice. This holiday season, though, I have to admit I haven’t had a really wonderful seasonal brew (with the exception of Troegs Mad Elf, not piney, but let’s all admit, beer lovers everywhere dream about year-round).

Great Lakes Brewing Co. has succeeded in making some very tasty beers (see my Lake Erie Monster review), and their Christmas Ale is a popular selection every holiday season. The beer pours a pretty bronze color, clear with a healthy head that leaves a fragile ring around the glass. The aroma is warm, with cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar, and maybe a little orange peel. It’s very season-appropriate, and even though Christmas is long gone, I’m brought right back to the warmth and comfort of the holidays.

The beer tastes of ginger and brown sugar up front, finishing with a very nice complimentary alcohol burn. The mouthfeel is slightly sticky, with a little welcome carbonation to break up the sweetness. This beer is more drinkable than similar types I’ve had this season, but I’d most-likely be on sweet-overload after 1 or 2.

If you are looking for a beer that adequately encompasses the spices and warmth of Christmas Eve in front of a crackling fire, Great Lakes Brewing Co.’s Christmas Ale will not disappoint. It is not the piney-heaven that I am searching for during the holidays, but it’s far superior to other less flavorful, more sickeningly sweet holiday brews. If you see this one out and about, left behind from the holiday beer rush, pick it up without hesitation. You won’t be disappointed, but hey, do you know of any really piney beers out there that I can keep an eye out for?

By Beth Kerr

Bacon LIVE: Invest in Bacon before its to late.

On last nights show Sean and I talked about some grave news. Next summer there maybe a bacon shortage. That means that if you invest in bacon now it could pay off big when the next BLT season rolls around. Watch the show to get all the insight on this ever changing situation.

We also talked about Redpack whole peeled tomatoes in a can. We think you should e able to make a winter time BLT with them. We plan to try it before the next show so we can tell you how it was.

Sean also tried the new Chipotle Bacon burger for McDonalds so look for a full review on that soon!

Go to BaconLIVE.com to learn how to subscribe, call the show, and watch us live Wednesdays at 7pm ET!

Watch the live video recording on uStream.tv!