Guest Review: Haywood Heads to the Blind Pig!

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Thanks to Haywood for the great write-up of his trip to the Blind Pig in Cedar Rapids! Enjoy!

As Marv the Wet Bandit once said….HARRY! I’VE REACHED THE TOP! Well folks, that’s how I am feeling today as it just doesn’t get any better for me than being a guest reviewer for the Baron’s Blog. The guy has done more for my social life through discovering and sharing local spots, specials, and brews to try than this jean jacket did. And that jean jacket was pretty fucking cool if you ask me and my grandma who painted this portrait of my high school senior photo. Love you Gram.

Anyhow, now that my literary lips are firmly pressed upon the Baron’s Buns (million dollar bakery idea, get bent Hostess) let’s get to the real deal.

I went to the Blind Pig for the first time last week after catching one of their posts on Facebook of their daily special, I think it was the Grilled Chicken Pesto Philly. They had been cranking out some great looking entrees as of late, pairing them with soups of the day that sounded too good to miss, and highlighting them on their Facebook page, so when I got to choose where we were going to go for my 30th birthday dinner it didn’t take long for me to go with the Pig. I had lived just three blocks away from the Blind Pig for a year when I first moved to Cedar Rapids in 2016, and hadn’t stopped in….this was a mistake.

The Blind Pig is the ultimate come as you are kind of establishment. You automatically feel comfortable to leave whatever you’ve been carrying with you at the door and get ready for a good time. It’s a spot where you’ll see a biker buying a shot for a business man, a group of Coe College students putting back a couple of tall boys, or a family out to celebrate a birthday as was the case with us. We started things off with an order of White Cheddar Nuggets. My wife Brooke got a strawberry daiquiri which was so damn good, I got one. This is 2018, dudes drink Daiquiri’s too. Plus, I think it is impressive for a bar to offer a full range of crafts, domestics, hard stuff, and then also do a dynamite Daiquiri. The Cheddar Nuggets were a great kickstart to the meal. It’s hard to mess up fried food, but it can happen, and the Blind Pig made sure the nuggets were hot and crispy with the white cheddar melty on the inside. I recommend giving their garlic dill ranch a go on the side, but I’m a sauce freak.

For the main I went with the Mushroom and Swiss Burger, and it was rock solid. The burger was made perfectly to order and paired well with the Pompeii I tag teamed it with. I have to give special mention to the Roasted Red Pepper Soup I had. It was 5 stars, I’m a sucker for a cream based soup, but they brought out the pepper flavor without killing you on the heat in a way that made me wish I had gone from cup to bowl. My mom got the A-1 Steakhouse Burger which might have been the entrée of the night. This thing was an incredible meatnado of angus beef, and A-1 smoked bacon, bleu cheese crumbles, onion tanglers, siracha aoli, all on a brioche bun. Mom said nix on the tanglers, but I got a feeling it’s an A+ burger no matter where you stand on the great tangler debate. My wife went with the nachos and they were piled high with all of the fixings. You could share that with a table no doubt, but it also makes a great main dish if you’re feeling like going south of the border. Not only were the food and drinks great, but the Red Sox downed the Yankees that night and my buddy Twinks who is a big Yankees fan, and his Tinder Date came in out of nowhere, so being able to tip a few, drive a burger into me, AND rub the fall of the pinstripes to the mighty Bo Sox made it a night I won’t soon forget. It solidifies the whole overall theme of the Blind Pig. You never know who you might see there, or what’s going to happen when you walk in those doors. They started tuning up the karaoke on our way out. I almost ruined the evening for my wife and mother by busting out my best Back at One by Brian McKnight, but decided better of it.

If this is the last time the Baron allows me to guest blog, which I figure it has to be, I’ll leave you with this DOOZY of a tag line I came up with while taking a walk at lunch today.

The Pig might be blind, but the good time is easy to see. Make sure to get over when you get a chance.

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Thew Brewing Releasing “Planned Sick Days Pale Ale” this Friday Oct. 19th!

thewThew Brewing will be releasing a collaboration beer with internet celebrity Planned Sick days called “Planned Sick Days Pale Ale” this coming Friday in conjunction with the University of Iowa homecoming weekend! Looking forward to try this one! Here’s a bit more info on this collab: And follow Planned Sick Days on twitter with their handle: @PlannedSickDays

Happy homecoming, Hawkeyes! We’ll be releasing our newest beer, a pale ale brewed in collaboration with the internet’s Planned Sick Days. On tap and in crowlers starting at 3 p.m.!

Big Grove Easy Eddy hitting tap lines tomorrow! (10/13) + Easy Eddy Cans Return Next Week!

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Big Grove Brewery just made a bunch of beer lovers happy as they’ve announced that Easy Eddy will return to their tap lines tomorrow, (Saturday, October 13th)! This was announced through the Iowa City location so I’m not sure if both locations will have it on the lines.

What’s even more exciting is the announcement that Easy Eddy cans will be available next week at select Iowa City and Cedar Rapids stores! Here’s more from BGB!

Ready for good news? Your friend and mine, Easy Eddy returns to the taps Saturday 🙌 and we’re hosting a pre-release + Iowa at Indiana Gamewatch Party.
More good news? Next week, these cans will be sold in several of your favorite stores around Cedar Rapids and Iowa City.

Need Pizza Hosting Big Grove Brewery Luckiest Man Ales for ALS tonight! 10/11

A great cause going on tonight at Need Pizza if you are in the Cedar Rapids area as Big Grove brewery will have their “Luckiest Man” pale ale being tapped tonight. Every year this gets tapped by Big Grove every pint that gets sold benefits ALS research. Speaking of the beer, this years release is tasting fantastic! Grab a pizza, have a couple of pints and help out a great cause!

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The Royal Mile Hosting Wilson’s Orchard “Apples + Bees” a Cider and Mead Party October 20th!

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A fun event coming up in Des Moines at the Royal Mile. Wilson’s Orchard will be on hand hosting an “Apples + Bees” cider and mead party. Many samples of different ciders and meads across the country and the world will be available. Here’s more info on this upcoming event:

Join us on October 20th from 10AM-3PM for “Apples and Bees”, a cider and mead party! We will be featuring ciders from Iowa and the rest of the U.S., as well as France, Spain, and England. We will be releasing the full cider/mead list as we get closer to the event so stay tuned! We will also be featuring local apples and honey, as well as cheese from Maytag Dairy. Representatives from participating cideries and meaderies will be on hand to sample their ciders/meads and educate customers on their products and how their beverages are made.

Admission is free if you wish to just come down and sample or 10 tickets can be purchased for $30. Each ticket can be redeemed for one 5 ounce pour. There will also be a special “Apples and Bees” cider taster glass that can be purchased for $5. “Apples and Bees” will be happening on the Royal Mile patio (weather permitting) and is one you surely won’t want to miss!

Meet the Brewer @ Reds Alehouse: Toppling Goliath w/ Mornin’ Delight 10/10/18

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Reds Alehouse has announced its next Meet the Brewer event will feature Toppling Goliath and TG will be bringing their infamous Mornin’ Delight to be tapped at the event! Here’s more from Reds:

If It’s TGIF, Why are are looking forward to Wednesday more?

Oh yeah – Toppling Goliath Brewing Co. Meet the Brewery and Mornin’ Delight Release! Here are the deets:

Tapped all day – Imperial Golden Nugget, Thresher, Pseudo Sue, Golden Nugget

Tapping at 7pm – Mornin’ Delight

Pours will be on a first come, first serve basis. As a special little treat, Chef Abe is cooking up a dessert paring to go with your pour of MD.

Espresso Truffle: Local candied butternut squash, dark chocolate truffle, candied orange peel, espresso glee, hazelnut crumble, bourbon sea salt.

Stay tuned for teasers, prices and pictures in the time leading up to the release!

Big Grove Richard the Whale Release set for Dec. 1st; Tickets on Sale Oct. 10th

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Big Grove Brewery has released details on their highly anticipated 2018 Richard the Whale Release. The release will take place on Dec. 1st, and tickets will go on sale Wednesday October 10th. Here’s more:

Richard the Whale Barrel-Aged Russian Imperial Stout release party at Big Grove Brewery & Taproom in Iowa City 🐋

‣ 2 Richard the Whale .375 L bottles
‣ 1 Coffee Richard .375 L bottle
‣ 1 Macaroon Richard, this year’s special variant .375 L bottle
‣ Richard the Whale 2018 collectable glass
‣ 6 oz. pour of Richard the Whale

Tickets 🎟: $75
🔜 On sale on Wednesday, October 10 at 11:00 AM (link will go live on Oct. 10 in this Event post)
🔜 Many more details to come and we’re looking forward to hosting a whale of a party!

Big Grove Announces Northside Oktoberfest Beers

big groveWhat’s Big Grove bringing to Northside Oktoberfest this year? Every year they’ve brought the big guns for this terrific festival and tomorrow will be no different. If you’re going and are curious as to what they are bringing, check out the list below, chances are it’s going to be a great day for you!

Big Grove Trailer will have some familiar faces plus some Special Release Taps: 11am-Cherry Pie
12pm -Richard the Whale Coffee
1pm Que Onda Retacca

Real Ale Cask Tent Strawberry Lemonade Sour, 5% Berliner Weisse
Berries & Honey Sour, 5% Berliner Weisse

Big Ed w/Citra, Mosaic, & Pineapple, 7.8% Hazy Double IPA (Real Ale Competition) Starla Double Dry Hopped w/Amarillo, 6.3% Hazy Pale Ale
Tangerine & Cranberry West Main Wheat, 5.2% American Wheat Ale
Harvest Ale w/Local Chinook from Buck Creek Farms, 5.6%