Monday, December 10, 2007

Howe Sound Father John Winter Ale and OMFG Readers

Deep within the Clan ARC lier (aka Flavius' kitchen) there was much rejoicing.

Flavius - "OMFG we had readers of our blog. Your porn idea worked."
Meterman - "History repeats itself; it is your blog and it was your porn idea. Lesbians."
Flavius - "We need to do it again. I can write lots of material about lesbians; I saw Phantom of the Opera 24 times."
Meterman -"Those are thespians you dip-shit. Why do I keep hanging around with you?"
Flavius - "Well endowed beer fridge?"
Meterman - "Right! Nice porn intro. Get with the beer review."
Flavius -"Right you are. This one is a good one..

Howe Sound Brewery - Father John Winter Ale.

We like this brewery. It is local and the bottles are big and strong.
Meterman - "You mean erect and throbbing?"
Not really they are 1 litre in size and this monster brew was 8% alcohol.

Taste +4

This is a well done Winter Ale. This dark amber ale reveals tastes of pineapple, plum, vanilla and mulling spices. There is a very sweet, malty taste that balances these complex flavours.

Meterman -"This brew had so many flavours you could compare it to a triple jointed circus freak."
Flavius -"Hey those are great porn keywords. I search for those all the time!"
Meterman -"................ I will break this awkward silence by moving further away from you."

Aftertaster +2

There was a long lingering sweet malty taste. This was balanced nicely with a heavy alcohol aftertaste.

Alcohol Content +1

At 8% this brew is a sneaky one, but you can still taste the alcohol.

Value +1

At 8 bucks for one litre of great tasting beer, this is a stellar deal.

In-game enhancement +1

I'm sure the delta went up despite the blurred vision and lack of feeling in my arms.

This one get 9/10, almost perfect score. I went out and bought a few more.

Flavius -"Hey Meterman, where were all those porn references to increase our readership?"
Meterman -"I dunno, it seems kinda tired. We should try something new."
Flavius - "I noticed you used the word 'we'. We also only did one porn post, is the ADD acting up again?"
Meterman -"ADD what do you Hey you wanna play video games."
Flavius -"I rest my case."

Sunday, December 9, 2007

A Vegetarian Las Vegas Part 3

This was the big meal we had been looking forward to. We have been to higher end restaurants before, but none of them had a dedicated Vegetarian menu. The service and presentation was flawless. So let's begin.
We were started with a sampler of carrot and ginger soup, which was suburb. The sweetness of the carrots was balanced nicely with the spiciness of the ginger. There was not too much ginger. We actually like this better than the soup course.

  1. Market Baby Lettuces. Heirloom tomatoes, avocado, Ellis reserve blue cheese. Wine: 2006 Huia Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough. This is a fancy salad, but the blue cheese was the most amazing thing I have every tasted. I almost licked the plate. The wine was a great pairing, nice and light.
  2. Sweet Onion Veloute. Green Apple, Celery, Pickled red onion. Wine 2005 Jean-Marc Brocard Chablis 'Vielles Vignes, Burgundy. Essentially this was creamy sweet onion soup with green apple sauce, but it was very, very, very good.
  3. Roquefort Cheese Souffle. Pear Salad with Port reduction. Wine 2003 Chateau Gravas, Sauternes. The highlight of this course was the wine, it had a similar sweetness to a dessert or ice wine.
  4. Roasted Vegetable Pot Pie. Braised Fennel, Baby Carrot, Roasted Mushrooms. Wine 2004 Martinus Pinot Noir, Martinborough, New Zealand. We traveled hundreds of miles, paid $85 per person, and you serve us pot pie! Contents 2 baby carrots, a fennel bit and three mushrooms, real let down. At least it was presented nicely. The mushrooms at least were not buttons. Wine was nice though.
  5. Desert was a Tasting of Michael Mina Signature desserts: Warm Chocolate Cake, Coconut Panna Cotta, Mini Root Beer Float and chocolate chip cookies. Wine 2000 Dow 'Late Bottled Vintage' Port. The chocolate lava cake with the port was heavenly. A very uncomplicated dessert which tasted incredible.
When the cheque arrived they also let us sample some smaller chocolates and pastries. I also ordered an espresso which came with a side of sugar and lemon rind. This was a very nice touch. We were there for over two hours and never felt rushed. The portions were not overly small, but after two hours you felt nicely satisfied. It was truly an unforgettable meal. We only had one complaint; at a restaurant such as this you must have a complaint. It makes you feel like more of a foodie, even if you are not. We noticed a heavy reliance on cheese for flavour in every course. That was the only complaint; except for the pot pie. Again, this meal passed the tummy test.
We will visit this restaurant again, without question.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

How is Counter Strike like Golf

There are many ways, I feel, Counter Strike is similar to golf
  • Expensive outlay of cash for good initial equipment. What is the price of a 8800GTX these days, or a set of Pings.
  • they both usually involve drinking beer
  • both can take long periods of time
  • both can be very frustration, but we still play anyways
  • lots of intense action, followed by long periods of waiting. You set up, hit your ball, then walk 10 minutes to find it.
  • wives/girlfriends/spouses get mad when we play too much
  • upgrades are needed to enhance performance. These usually do not help.
  • neither are a real athletic sport
  • the both usually involve swearing
  • they are mainly a male sport
  • sport related injuries affect wrists and forearms
  • there are professional league with stars
  • these stars can give private lessons for a fee
  • no matter how good you think you are, there is always someone better
There are some areas the CS is not like golf
  • we don't handle our balls during play
  • CS is not a real-time face to face social sport
  • CS is almost exclusively played indoors
  • CS game play can be shorter
  • good players don't make big $$

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Faxe Strong Danish Lager and Porn

Deep in the lier of clan ARC, Meterman and Flavius plan to accumulate millions in dollars and earn fame in previously unimaginable proportions.
Flavius - "We need to draw more hits to our blog. This will be the first step to fame and fortune."
Meterman - "As usual, I have found several flaws in your scattered reasoning Dumb-Ass."
Flavius - "Well check under my feet!"
Meterman - "You wish. Firstly, this is your lame blog. I would never be associated with something this childish and asinine. Secondly, there is no money to be made in blogging. All the money being made on the net usually involves porn. Thirdly, there is no lier. We were sitting in your kitchen eating lasagna. And lastly, you are never going to be famous because you are boring and your material sucks.
Flavius - "Thank you mister warm fuzzy. I have the perfect solution."
Meterman - "Oh sh*t, now what. It's not going to involve your baby pictures again, is it?"
Flavius - "Even better, but not as risqué. Lets use a lot of porn keywords to draw attention from perverted search bots. More attention should draw more hits and more subscribers."
Meterman -"I never thought I would ever say this; that might actually be a smart idea."
Flavius - "I know we can pull this off, and dangle our manthings for everyone to admire. How was that for a start."
Meterman -"Terrible. Leave the funny stuff to me."
Flavius - "Right then..

This black canned, face slapping beer is an ARC favourite. At 8%, is this not for the faint of heart nor weak of liver.

Meterman -"The can is as black as Angela Jolie's public hair."

Taste +3
Despite having a nose of high fructose corn syrup and paint thinner, this beer actually tastes pretty good. There are slight nutty flavours hidden under the first rush of hops. The sweetness really hides the high alcohol content.

Meterman - "The beer is sweet, voluptuous and gives a great creamy head. It does not taste like Paris Hilton's ass."

Aftertaste +1 There is almost none. The malt sweetness fades gently and leaves a mild vapor of solvents.

Meterman -"The blond coloured ale, gave me a throbbing taste of things to come."
Flavius - "Wasn't that a bit much?"
Meterman -"Shut up. I know what I'm doing."

Alcohol content +1
At 8% this beer can hurt you. It is quite easy drinking. Three quick ones back to back could leave you face down in a pool of your own fluids.

Meterman -" This beer is sure to blow me away after I get off my job."

Value +1
For 500ml beer with 8% alcohol that you can find for under $2, this is a great deal. Perfect for first dates and after a nasty break up.

Meterman -"I bought this beer from a lesbian at the liquor store. I was in line behind a threesome of cheerleaders."
Flavius -"What the @#$# was that!"
Meterman -"You wanted hits right! Nothing gets hits like lesbians and cheerleaders."

Ingame Enhancement +1
The delta went up, even though my consciousness went down.

Meterman -"I'm out of material. This sucks. Get me another beer."
Flavius -"I wish you were a beer...

This one gets a 7/10. This beer has one use and one use only. To get you @#$#ed up in the most efficient way possible. That is why we like it and recommend it to all our friends.

Meterman -"You don't have any friends."
Flavius -"That was mean and not entirely true. What about you, aren't you my friend?"
Meterman -"Please don't make me answer that."

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

OMG a subscriber

Wow, my first feedburn subscriber! I checked and it is not my Mom. It is not even Meterman; even my friends don't read my rantings. Welcome.

A Vegetarian's Trip to Las Vegas (Part 2)

Now back to the show..
Thursday was filled with good veggie eats and violence.
The buffet at the Luxor was full of great options for vegetarians. For $12 bucks we had omelets, scrambled eggs with great salsa, blackberries and waffles. Just be careful of wrapped pastries; some of them had ham in it. The apple crepes were very good. As always the tummies passed the test.

Then the men caught a cab to The Gun Store. The cab ride cost about $20. We chose this range over the Discount Firearms range; we were not sure why but are sure glad we did. In was a very well run indoor gun range focused on the tourist business. Almost assembly line, yet personalized. You walked up the counter and choose your weapon of choice, then your target, paid your money, grabbed eye and ear protection before someone lead you into the range to set you up. Meterman choose the MP5, a glock and an AK47. Flavius went high end and got a Desert Eagle, P90 and the AK47. A very, very fun time; not cheap though. Most of the free Las Vegas entertainment magazines have a $5 coupon to use at the store; we forgot ours. They even let us bring in our video cameras.

After drinking a few beers in our hotel room (Mandalay Bay), we got a call from our ladies in the Caesars Forum. They felt we should walk to the Cheese Cake Cafe and meet them for lunch. Sure, we were up to a 1/2 hour fast walk. The Cheese Cake Cafe had lots of options for veggies; we shared the edamame and tamale cakes. Both were very good and two people easily shared them. They also had Fat Tire Amber Ale ON TAP! No review on this one; all I will say is that this beer is my favourite. It is a lighter, Belgian inspired ale. I only wish I could find this beer on a regular basis.

In part 3 we will reveal the gastronomic hedonism that was Micheal Mina vegetarian menu.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Devils Elbow IPA - Howe Sound Brewery

Named after some class 3-4 rapids in Squamish, BC; this big one litre beer is a definite hoppy menace.

Taste +3

Flavius gave this intensely hoppy IPA a +4. He liked the hard smack of hops which quickly vanished to reveal a very smooth malty finish.

Meterman rated this beer at a +2. While not being too keen on IPAs, he felt that it had some good flavours. Even if one of them was slightly metallic.

Aftertaste +2

Unlike other IPAs, this amber brew filled the mouth but it didn't linger very long.
Meterman felt that this was the best part; that he didn't have to taste it for any longer than necessary.

Alcohol Content 0

At 6% the alcohol content was not noticeable. But if you drank the whole one litre, it might be.

Value +2

We had to give it a positive score because it was free. Thanks for the present Dark J. Narsgakk. If hard pressed, Meterman might have bought one.

Ingame Enhancement +1

Stats went up and there was good chatter in the shire. We both had a great night. After a few beers, we wish we had that urinal installed in the LAN room.

Overall Rating +8

For an average beer, surprisingly this got our highest score. I guess free beer dose taste better.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Baltika #3 (Russia)

DA! Now for something completely different, Baltika #3; a classic Russian beer. At least that is what the label states.

Taste +1

It is very hard to describe the tasting of this beer because it doesn't seem to have one. Lets say it is mildly hoppy; kinda like a watered down Belgian.

Meterman says "Wow, this beer is bland!"

Aftertaste 0

When there is no taste how can there be an aftertaste.

Alcohol Content 0 6-4%

At 4.8%, you can hardly call this brew a heavyweight, but at least you can't taste the alcohol.

Value 0

At least it was cheap at $2.50 for 500ml.

Ingame Enhancement -1

The delta took a hit, the wallet took a hit and the liver took a hit; all for no taste at all.

Overall Rating 0

A pleasant coating of hops that quickly vanishes.
Meterman says, "The label says no preservatives. Maybe they should of added some; it might have preserved the flavour."
Generally beers are not distilled. It tastes like this one was.

Granville Island Oktoberfest

This limited edition by Granville Island Brewery even looks like a pumpkin.

Taste +3

A slightly bitter start quickly reveals a great tasting of dried apricots. I liked the two second delay until the hops kick in.

Aftertaste +1

A left a slight bitter aftertaste than lingered not too long.

Alcohol Content +0 6-4%

At 6% you could taste the alcohol a little more than one would expect.

Value 0

A 650ml 6% beer for $5 is nice, but the taste does not warrant a +1.

Ingame Enhancement 0

My Delta dropped faster than a [insert witty comment here]. I will admit it was due to too many beers, but at least I had a fun time.

Overall Rating +4

This a slightly above average beer, but I doubt I would get it again.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Phillips Surly Blonde Ale Review

This is one of our favourite brew, but we are usually too busy drinking it to give it a proper review. Brewed by a handful crazy guys in Esquimalt; this amber ale is sure to please.

Taste +4
This is sure a belgian-style; big flavours of berries and fruit over a heavy wheat base. It does a great job at hiding the heavy alcohol content. This is not for the light beer crowd.

After taste +1

A nice lingering tastes of dried fruits. It leaves a light coating on the tongue.

Alcohol Content +1

At 9.1% this beer is a slap to the face. But it is very hard to taste the alcohol content. Be very careful with this one; it is easy to drink a few very quickly. Then the next thing you know, you can't feel your forearms.

Value +1

I love the 650ml high alcohol content beer. It costs around $5 and it shares very well.

In-game enhancement

With a drop of over 100 points the alcohol content pushed my passed relaxed into the stupid range.
On a bright note I did deliver a nice headshot to Meterman across the train map. No haxs were used.

Overall rating 6 out of 10

I always have one of these in my fridge at all times. If I ever need a quick get me f'ed up beer; this is one a grab. Full of hard to describe flavours; if this were the only beer on my deserted island I would be a happy man. Had it been for a better night of fragging; this amber ale might have scored higher.

Monday, October 8, 2007

A Vegetarian's Trip to Las Vegas (Part 1)

As we have learned on prior trips, Las Vegas is not the greatest city for vegetarians. The availability of 'creative' vegetarian options is small. Surprisingly, not once did we eat at subway.

We arrived on Wednesday after doing our research. The first smart idea was to hire a limo over the internet. It was well worth the expenditure; our friends had to walk for miles and wait in long lines for a cab. Our driver was by our baggage pickup with a little sign with our name on it. The limo cost about 60 bucks versus a 20 dollar crazy cab ride.

While lounging in our limo, with a complimentary cold Dasani in hand, we drove not to the hotel but to Trader Joe's. We thought about going to Whole Foods, but we liked the unique selection of foods at Joe's better. After picking up supplies: lots of fruit, meal bars, goat brie, crackers, single malt scotch, beer, chocolate covered edamames and lots of water, we headed to the Mandalay Bay Hotel. Looking back I would have bought more water.

Since this is Beer-Strike I feel I should rate this beer. I got a six pack of a microbrew called Kennebunkport Blueberry Wheat ale. Since this was a hotel room beer, it was drank from the bottle and chilled in a bathroom sink full of ice. So details concerning aroma, colour and head are not available for comment. Also in-game enhancement could not be determined; I was not going to pay $14 per day for wireless at our hotel. It tasted like your standard wheat ale with the added flavour of blueberries. I found it to be a very easy drinking and flavourful brew, I wish I could find this one at home. It would be one of my favourites. Meterman said, "In a city where tall can BUD rules, I was proud to drink this on the strip. I especially like the fact that my burps smelled, and tasted, like ripened blueberries."

We had a quick bite at the Burger Bar at Mandalay Place. The was a place when you chose your burger, bun and toppings to create your own burger. I got the vegetarian burger with sweet potato fries and the Mrs got the 'vegan' burger. True to form the burger came plain with a huge load of fries. There was ketchup, mustard and A1 sauce at the table so things ended up fine. The vegan burger was essentially grilled veggies between two portabello mushrooms and a huge mountain of plain fries. We were unable to consume that many carbs, so most of the fries went back. The burgers were excellent. The beer list featured an extensive listing of on tap brews, most of them were Belgians or Chimay. I had the white/triple which is hard to find at home. The Mrs had an English style cider (I forget the name), but it was the best one she has had since Scrumpy. After 20% tip and exchange the bill came to a very reasonable $48 bucks.

There are a few types of vegetarians who review restaurants. The question asking types; "What is in your cooking oil?", "Do you have a separate pan for cooking vegetarian?", etc, etc. We use the 'tummy test' method. Usually if we come into contact with animal products, our stomachs let us know. While this is a little ostrich-like, it is our way. None of the restaurants listed caused any stomach upset at all.

Part two will feature the Vegetarian menu at Michael Mina. One of the top five restaurants in Las Vegas.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

AHLTV - All Hail Lord Techno Viking

I admit I watch You-tube at work (only when my work is done and nothing is going on). Usually they are the standard goofball crashing on a bike/skateboard/skis/rollerblades. Why are none of them ever wearing helmets? I never get tired of watching those hilarious Dr. Tran videos.
This one is by far the weirdest yet. All hail Lord Techno Viking. It is impossible to describe; I wish I could be this imposing. People would hand me water and fear the wrath of my bouncing pectoral muscles. Perhaps this will be the start of the latest on-line fad/cult.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Warzone 2100 on Ubuntu Linux

The more I use Ubuntu, the more I like it. I think it has better integration with iPods, via RhythmBox. OpenOffice is quite nice. I am having a little trouble playing Counter-Strike on linux; I think this problem might be resolved with a Nvidia video card. ATI cards are not the best for gaming on linux. But anyways, what I'm playing now is Warzone 2100 for linux. It is a standard RTS game in a Command and Conquer style.
I feel there are a few nice twists. You can recover new technology and design new vehicles and defenses. The game play is a little harder than C&C right from the start. The best part is that it is free.
There are a few draw backs, but not many. There is a manual, but it is not as slick as commercial games. A few odd keystrokes and you are moved to a different part of the map. Surprisingly installation for Ubuntu was very easy with the supplied package. There is a Windoze and a Muc installer, but I have no experience with those.
This game is highly addictive; so addictive in fact that I am going to cut this post short and play.


Saturday, September 22, 2007

A Fresh Start

Well I gave up my website for a new format; free blogging space from Google. This is much cheaper but not as impressive. Maybe this is even better than my website, because my HTML skills stank. This was a lesson in if you don't use it you should lose it.
For all my loyal fans - all 4 of you - this is where my domain will redirect you. Perhaps 4 fans is a little bit of an exaggeration; if you exclude myself, Meterman, the cat and my imaginary friend that leaves zero. You must always start somewhere.
One day I will be like the guys at Penny Arcade, rich and able to play games all day. Until that time I will write crappy beer reviews.

Stay tuned.