Tagged with "Galway Hooker Beer Archives - Wise Words"
Nov 23 2015

Shopping for Christmas in Galway

Posted by     6 Comments    in Kitchen

Dear Santa,

All I want this year, is a truly beautiful Galway Christmas.

Sadly, my children no longer believe in you; we never saw it coming.

One minute they were cute, small and believing, and the next thing we knew, they were lanky, long and thieving.

So this year I am requesting a few treats from a few of my favourite Galway shops making our Galway Christmas all the more special. Seeing as we are still planning on honouring the terms of our contract and plan on feeding yourself and the reindeers, I thought I might take advantage of you being none the wiser of the kids sudden state of awareness and ask for a few gorgeous Galway gifts – just for myself and himself this year, seeing as you do not have to blow the budget on the kids anymore! He does, after all, do all the feeding of you and your eight not-so-tiny reindeer.

So first things first … and in case you do not even know where to start … I am just gonna give you my Top Five or Seven Favourites … in no order of importance at all .. you decide Santa .. we have both been very nice (not naughty at all!) this year .. and to be frank, could use a little cheering up.

BEER

Let’s face it Santa. We, in Galway, have come a long long way in craft brewing over the last few years. Only last week I was blogging about the lads over at Galway Hooker Brewing because they have a new beer out that we love – so it’s simple. Please Santa – can we have some more? (Upcoming blog post later this week will be all about making a traditional Swiss Fondue using Beer – making it no longer a Swiss thang … totally giving it the Irish flavour it deserves!).

galway hooker 60 knots IPA christmas

BLING

Yes – this one is for me. Or for any deserving lassies you know Santa. There is this gorgeous little shop at the bottom of town, on the Spanish Arch … called Cobwebs. Santa … it is a treasure trove of wearable history. Sure, they have gorgeous new shiny gems too, but it is the antique pieces that speak to me.

 Cobwebs

BOURBON

Ok – I know, I know. Nothing Irish (or Galwegian) about this one at all, right? Eh, no – wrong – dead wrong. See, Santa, there is a new  bar and restaurant in town, where all the cool kids are hanging out, called Tribeton. And Santa … they have a massive selection of beautiful bourbons. So much so, that a gift certificate to Tribeton would be a total treat for the two of us Bourbon aficionados … t’would remind us our ole Kentucky home – well Cincinnati, Ohio but its on the border like.

Galway Christmas Tribeton

Now, that is not to say that I would not be upset at all with a Gift certificate to our favourite, and in almost everyone’s opinion, the best restaurant in Galway.

Kai

BEAUTIFUL

Right. This one is kinda sorta for me, but I’m a-gonna be honest and tell you if you bestow a gift certificate upon  me for this gorgeous shop, My Granny Likes it, I will most likely re-gift it immediately as I have been forbidden from ever going in there. Santa, they stock everything, and I mean everything from incredibly talented crafty and artsy Irish folk. My most sought after piece right now is a piece by Armagh artist Stephen Farnan .

My re-gifting efforts would not go to waste, as I would post lots of these cute colouring kits to my Irish friends and family, who are dotted all over the world and no doubt, missing the motherland at Christmas. It’s probably a blessing in disguise, but I am still sad that I can’t purchase these on line from this cute little shop –  if you must pop in yourself, you will surely understand why I have been forbidden to go there.

 Irish Artist Granny Likes it

BUTCHER

Now Santa…..I know what you are going to say about this one. Yes. it is true, we do indeed have lots of our own butchered meat in the freezer for the winter. And when we do step outside of our own meat raring, it is to buy Pork (and this year Lamb) from our friends in Tipperary at OldFarm. But on occasion, himself and myself love nothing more than to sit down to a beautiful piece of crimson, marbled with intricate traceries of fat, grass fed beef.

Tormey’s Butcher Shop in the Galway Shopping Centre isthe only place we buy Organic Chickens, beautifully aged grass-fed Rib eye of Beef  and (special order) Veal Chops. And before you go all crazy on me Santa, I am referring to the 35+ week old grass and milk fed Rose Veal, not raised in crates. In response to your concern though, some farmers have adopted more organic, free range operations for raising their calves. Crating is banned in a number of countries, including the European Union and the United Kingdom, and several states in the US. Sales of free-range veal have increased in recent years, which hopefully will prompt larger producers to change their farming methods.

Galway Christmas Tormeys Butcher

BLUSH

Ok – I know I said I would only give you my Top Five … but I have worked up an unquenchable thirst while working on this list, so thought it best to add in a few of my favourite bottles of wine. We are promised a cold Winter here Santa in Galway. Nothing as cold as the North Pole like, but we are eagerly anticipating a few lovely long weeks of low lights and lazy days intertwined with blazing fires offering up a calmness @ChezWise like never seen before.

So first up for the wine  fridge, how about a bottle of this flawless NZ Pinot Grigio? With it’s signature pale pink blush from the Pinot Grigio grape, we have been known to gift to our friends over the festive season .. and they too love it .. but then we are left with none for ourselves. .. and this makes me sad, Santa.

Another popular bottle of wine which you could happily bestow on us is this gorgeous oaky Sicilian red wine. The native Nero d’Avola grapes with the world travelled Cabernet, brings us a blissful blend.

Both of these wines, along with a massive amount more excellent wines, can be found at Cases Wine Warehouse along the Tuam road.

Cases Wine

BREAK

Last little mention goes to Solaris Teas. Santa, if nothing else, bring some home to Mrs. Claus for  a well earned tea-break!

Solaris Tea Gifts

Right so Santa….. there you have it. A few nice treats for myself and himself … most of which will be shared with our friends and family because we don’t like to eat or drink alone … and because without our friends and family, life would be rather dull, wouldn’t it Santa?

We are gearing up for a lovely Irish Thanksgiving here with our friends and family in Galway this week. We hope, wherever you are in the world, you can take a minute out to offer up a little thanks for your health, your family and your friends.

That is all for now guys n’ dolls …. happy shopping!

 

WiseMóna

 

 

Nov 15 2015

Galway Hooker Beer Cheese Soup

Posted by     8 Comments    in Kitchen

It’s one of those days.

The weather, no, storm Abigail, has clenched her teeth on the West of Ireland and seems unwilling to release; even if we play nice.

I have received several requests from friends an family to met up for a cup of tea today, but I have insisted on doing nothing that requires me to get dressed. We declared today a pyjama day –  and so it is.

Early this morning, I started Googling for some comfort food inspiration. Himself was in the throes of making a loaf of bread and we were undecided as to what our Sunday supper would consist of; neither of us felt like cooking.

Thankfully, himself had cooked a whole shank of veal yesterday, pot roast style, so that’s supper sorted then, but what about lunch?

Late last week, we had stopped in to visit our friends at Galway Hooker Brewery. They have another beer added to their repertoire, which we had yet to try.

The brewery was established in 2006, in Roscommon by two first cousins, Aidan Murphy (below) and Ronan Brennan. A couple of years ago, they decided to return the brewing operation back home to Galway, and they have been brewing and blossoming ever since.

This new (since earlier this year) India Pale Ale is excellent. Himself will probably never stray from their flagship beer (Galway Hooker Pale Ale) but I am always interested in finding a new beer, and I get especially excited when I find one that is homegrown.

galway_hooker_60_knots IPA Beer Cheese Soup

The Galway Hooker India Pale Ale  comes loaded with that hop filled flavour we love (and fun at 6.5% alcohol content!) and it was begging to be incorporated into our lunch plans. Hey, what else is a girl going to do on a dream wet wintry day in the west? Having a beer with lunch never sounds like a bad idea!

The soup is a bit tricky to make. Not in the sense that a novice cook can’t take it on as a challenge, just in the sense that it is easy burn it (as there is milk in it), and there is always the likelihood that the cheese will break and you will end up with lumpy soup. The key to your success, should you attempt to make this, is to keep the temp low on the stove when you add the cheese.

Galway Hooker India Pale Ale Beer Cheese Soup

5.0 from 3 reviews

Galway Hooker Beer Cheese Soup
Author: 
Recipe type: Soup
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

Serves: 6
 

A delicious soup to warm you from the inside out on a cold wintry wet day.
Ingredients
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 60 g flour
  • 950 ml chicken stock
  • 1 bottle Galway Hooker India Pale Ale or any beer you like to drink
  • 115 g cream cheese
  • 450 g grated sharp cheese (we used Mossfield Organic hard cheese)
  • 250 ml milk
  • 1 teaspoon Colemans English mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and White Pepper to taste

Instructions
  1. In a large pot sauté the onions, carrots, and celery and garlic in the butter. Put the lid on the pot, reduce the heat, and cook until soft.
  2. Stir in the flour, like you are making a roux and cook until thick and it browns just a little bit. Whisk in the chicken stock and simmer or a few minutes. Reduce heat leave to simmer, stirring occasionally, for a half an hour, then using an immersion blender, puree the vegetables to produce a nice thick stock.
  3. Add the beer, followed by the cream cheese and handfuls of grated hard cheese of your choice, whisking all the time ensuring the cream cheese is smooth and the cheddar has melted. Do not let it come to a boil, as it will burn easily and boiling can cause the cheese to separate.
  4. Slowly pour in the milk, then add the mustard and Worcestershire sauce, then bring the heat up just a touch to allow the soup to gently simmer. Season with salt and white pepper to taste. Serve with a slice of toasted bread or your favourite crackers.

Galway Hooker India Pale Ale Beer Cheese Soup

Now, I am not saying you should be drinking a beer on your lunch break tomorrow at work, but this is definitely one to tote with you to work in your Thermos.

Absolutely smooth and silky and the chicken stock keeps it light enough ensuring the texture is not gloopy when you get ready to serve it. I would refrain from using any kind of Mozzarella cheese, even if you just happen to have it in the fridge, as it is really annoying to end up eating a soup that just strings along on your spoon and won’t let go!

Right – tis almost supper time here at Chez Wise and time for someone to open a bottle of wine! I hope your weekend was nice and relaxing and you managed to squeeze in a bit of rest and relaxation before heading back to the grind tomorrow morning!

WiseMóna

 

About Móna
I am a native Galway girl that seems to be drawn to professions that rhyme with 'err'. Writer, Mother, Restauranteur, Wedding Planner, Dishwasher, Grass cutter, Cocktail maker. I suppose you could say I am a well rounded entrepreneur.
You can find me here
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You might as well just come visit.
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