Busted Plan – No Problem

Last Saturday my daughter and I planned a rural adventure and if time permitted a swing by a local brewery on the return trip. We had intended to check out Blessington Farms hydroponic strawberries. They are also growing them vertically which is something I am trying. After an 80 minute drive we found the farm and a locked gate. “Google search” and sure enough – rain closure that we didn’t consider. Dang it! 

So, when in Wallis, Texas, do what the locals do, eat Mexican Food at Las Flores Mexican Restaraunt.  After Mexican food Ya gotta have a beer. The change in plans added an extra two hours to our planned short window of time at the No Label Brewing Company. 

No Label Brewing Company is located along the tracks in Old Katy, Texas. The brewery grounds are very laid back. Our first observation was – everyone was packing in their own lawn chairs! We forgot to pack ours. Note to self; when visiting No Label, Karbach or Southern Star breweries pack your chairs, your kids and your games. 

Eight bucks for 4 beers and a small souvenir glass. Second note to self; Bring your own glass. We bought a couple of pint glasses at the gift bar to cover that error. You can pack your own lunch in but there was food available from several vendors. The grassy area under the shady oak trees was a sea of families, dogs, picnic tables  and lawn chairs. 

Live music filled the air as we worked our way through our samplings. Wheat beers are ok in my book but I will give high marks to the El Hefe Wiezen Wheat Beer. The Eleven Amp IPA is very pleasant. The Don Jalepeno Ale is a nice surprise. The heat is not apparent immediately. When it does kick in it is pretty mellow. The Pale Horse and the Ridgeback Ale are also very satisfying! 


I wonder? Will this fit in my garage??? Sure would accelerate my home brewing! 


 A shot of the crowd looking back toward the shady oak trees. 


 In the shade and enjoying the day. 


 I am going to assume that Dr. Seuss is a 30 bbl fermenting vessel. There must be a story here.  

 Spicy Crawfish pairs nicely with the Jalepeno Ale. 


 Enjoying a beer with my daughter Lisa. Great Day! 

Drink Local and Drink Responsibly




Ahhhhh – Sunday in Williston

I do spend a lot of time in North Dakota. I have bills to pay, beers to drink and an almost twenty year old still attending college. Don’t get me wrong, I work because I want to and the work I do is very satisfying! 

The only problem with work other than the obvious, missing my partner and wife, is that it gets in the way of my hobbies, Home brewing is one of several at the top of my list. Beekeeping is relatively new but It gives me a buzz! Ok bad joke! Organic gardening, wood turning, less fishing than it should be and my bicycle is craving more miles. 

I am enjoying a Hopslam IPA as I ponder these important matters. Wow, Bell’s Brewery has put out a really great beer. This is one of the top 10% of my top 117 beers! Don’t ask me to list them, just trust me – the check is in the mail, etc – etc! 

Probably less beer drinking this trip and more time in the gym. My annual physical is in late April. The doctor got on me about my winter coat last year and I wore it all summer and may have added to it this winter. There is a slight temptation to switch to Coors Light! Nah- moderation Bishop, moderation! 

Williston does have a great workout facility so, unpack bags and get my sorry butt in gear. 

A few of my drinking buddies from my January trip – not real sociable but -5 degrees F  is no problem for them. Taken at Teddy Roosevelt National Park on February 1 with my Nikon D600 and my Nikon 80-200 2.8 lens. 

Drink Local and Drink Responsibly



Figueroa Mountain Brewing Company

I think this is the last stop for the evening. Good choice in both the company and the beers. We both had samplers and she chose the 101 and I chose the Lizard’s Mouth IPA! 

I also want to thank my sister Denise for sending me down to the funk zone off State Street near the beach. Too much fun! Great beers and a great fun crowd! And- very dog friendly! 

I have to pat Laci, our waitress on the back for being patient and putting up with an old guy asking all kinds of questions! 

We will be back, sorry Hollister Brewing, you are not anywhere near the top of our list. 

My wife and her flight. The 101, a Pilsner a wheat and the Red. Me, I was a little more organized. 

Yes I know the photo is upside down! Get over it! Suffice to say – the Lizard Mouth was my favorite! So, I ordered another pint before asking  my driver to take me to Island Brewing in Carpenteria. 


Good pizza – the Milpas! 


My favorite yummy is yet to materialize. 

My wfe had the Avocado Honey wheat and I was boing and had the Isaland IPA! Sorry – it works for me! 

Drink Local and Drink Responsibly


Hollister Brewing Company

My middle name is Bishop and for nearly 64 years that has been my moniker. That said, my first choice with my Red Curry Fish Stew was “The Pope IPA” . The menu calls it a full bodied West Coast IPA. It was pleasant,  but well short of being on my favorites list. 

I will try the HBC Cask Conditioned Ale with the stew!

 Ah, much nicer! The cask conditioned ale is their Wheelhouse Stout, a bit heavy as a  pairing for the stew but what the Hell, I like it and that is all that matters! The beer was damn near perfect- just a whisker below room temperature with a perfect, frothy and persistent head! Bite your tongue Bishop and “silencio por favor”!

Beer number three will be elsewhere. Maybe Stearn’s Wharf! The Figuera Brewery is walking distance. 

My beautiful beer drinking companion on this trip sampled the “Coastal Common” and wished she would have ordered the “Beachside Blonde”- it was one if those I told you so moments but, again I bit my tongue. It was a bit bit like an Anchor Steam – good,  but not in her wheelhouse. My thoughts as I drank a third of it was yummy, but not in my top 100! 

The Red Curry Stew did go well with the heavy Wheelhouse Cask  Aged Stout. It helped that I ate part of my wife’s burger with it! Her comment, “Well, we probably won’t come back here!”. Yes Dear! 

Drink Local, Be Selective and Drink Respobsibly! 


It is a Difficult Job Being Me

A beer on the beach yesterday and now I have to sit at a little corner table in the Santa Barbara Brewing Co. My poor lot in life! I am enjoying their IPA while watching a wide slice of life drifting by the window! Beautiful day here in SB.

The brewer, Rick, generously shared the recipe for the IPA. My challenge is to scale back the 1200 lbs. of two row to brew in my 10 gallon mash tun. I have a PDF of the brewer recipe and the Brewers hand written notes in the margin. Sorry, just private for me! 

There is Rick just finishing up…clean up duties are so important. He is a former home brewer gone pro over twenty years back! Ah, dream big Bishop! I don’t think 64 is too old to branch out, do you agree? 

I’ll be back! 10 points for the first person to comment on that famous movie line! I need to add to my list of beers! What next, hmmmmmm, scratching chin and pondering! 

Ok scratch off the India Pale Ale, next the Double IPA. The proir was nicely bitter with great aroma- I’ll give part of the recipe away, Cascade hops! The Double is less bitter but I like how the malt comes through! Oh gosh, I yearn to become a professional beer drinker. Lord knows that I have had practice – albeit some of the prior experience was a lot less structured! 

Drink Local and Drink Redponsibly


If you follow my blog and enjoy my sometimes incoherent ramblings, invite a few friends to follow! Maybe I can become semi-professional at something beer related! 

A Little Help at Tax Time

i am sorting through my receipts, invoices, travel expenses and miscellaneous stuff. I am raising my hand to vote for a flat tax! I am certain that it would eliminate most of my headaches! The CPAs’ may hate it but oh well- Too durned bad! 

To aid in the process I am sipping on a new beer, at least for me it’s new.  It is a Sierra Nevada “Beer Camp” Hoppy Lager. Mighty fine! Nicely hoppy at 55 IBU! It is 7% ABV so it is a sipping beer. A six pack would probably result in significant errors! I now have another  favorite for my list. Seems as though my favorites list is getting pretty full!’

Read more about Sierra Nevada’s Beer camp here;


I took a bottle for a trip to the beach today- I think we both enjoyed the afternoon.

Santa Barbara Channel in the background.

Nearby is Island Brewing in Carpenteria. I have a growler ready to be filled. My wife likes the Island Blonde! Don’t tell her but I’m also kind of partial to blondes! I like their Island Pale Ale and the Paradise Pale Ale and the Blackbird Porter and the Starry Night Stout. Oh – the Avocado Honey Wheat is very tasty too! On our recent visit we were treated to some live music! It was a nice laid back Friday night in the off season. Just locals and a few semi locals, like me and my bride. 


I think we will also check out Anacapa Brewey in Ventura on Thursday. I am looking forward to their Pierpoint IPA. 


So many beers and maybe only another 20 + years to work my way through the world’s remaining beers! 

Note: I had my phone battery die down on the beach as I was typing the post.  Apparently the draft was posted! Hopefully I pulled it before it was out there too long! At 64 years young, I am still working my way through new technology challenges! 

Drink Local and Drink Responsibly