Independence roadtrip - Thursday June 30th part three
Published on July 7th, 2011 @ 06:58:00 am , using 706 words, 254 views
Moving on from Founders Brewing Co, we had some big decisions to make.
Namely, move on to *where*?
Cool for Cats
We decided on Hopcat - they have a huge craft beer list, both taps and bottles. Plus we'd been salivating a *lot* over their 'Crack Fries'. OK, so maybe they're glammy named French Fries, but we still wanted to try them.
We headed on over, nicely there was a close parking garage.
Parking? Yes. See, our hotel was around 7 miles away from downtown and though we *could* walk that, it may be a little much if we'd had a little too much. So, we initially thought we'd take a cab. Until we found out 1 way from the hotel would be $21.00.
That's $42.00 round trip.
Jon took one for the team, again =), and paced himself so that we could save $42.00.
So, yes. Parking.
Headed two blocks from the parking structure to Hopcat.
Imagine a moderate tempo ragtime song. Here's a aural reminder of what that may sound like:
Hopcat is very nicely appointed. Wood everywhere, low table/chair seating, a nice bar and a bar rail for when things get peppy and drinking and standing is the order of the day (and, honestly I think that's my preference as bar chairs are never that comfy)
As you face the bar, you see their fermentation tanks through a window to the left. I always think the brewers must feel like fish. Behind glass, going around and around. I wonder if they get spooked when you tap on the glass?
Straight ahead of you at the bar are their many many taps.
The bar was busy, a lot of the tables were full. We took a seat near the window.
Their draft list was impressive and featured a lot of Michigan breweries, highlighted in green on their menu. They made it really easy to pick them out.
Hopcat is known for their interesting beers that they brew on premises, that have some interesting names.
I asked about Sage Against the Machine and the kind waiter brought me a sample of it. Quite good, but wasn't what I was looking for at that time. I tried some of their Gingervitis, and though good, I found it too sweet for my current taste.
So, I settled on a beer - Jon settled on a beer.
Then we ordered their infamous "crack fries".
"Oh, the kitchen is closed - I can bring you "crack bread" though..."
I bake. I think I'm pretty good at it, and I strive to get better.
But I don't feel well when I eat wheat consistently. Plus it makes me picky as hell about baked goods.
I also keep added fats to a dull roar. These facts make it *very difficult* to go to breweries and brewpubs as their starters and 'soak up the alcohol' foods are generally wheaty and fatty. I'll indulge sometimes, and I did on this journey, on the fats, but wheats I try to stay really minimal on.
Not only am I a beer snob and a coffee snob - I'm a baked goods snob as well. At least I admit it.
We turn down the "Crack bread" and he apologizes many times. It's fine, if I need a little bit of something, I have rice crackers stashed away in my Timbuk2 bag.
At this point things are getting a little hazy.
My battle plan for Grand Rapids was to get in and hit as much as I could physically handle hitting that night. Sometimes you have to take really big bites of life.
I'm not quite feeling done yet, but it's intermittantly pouring out. Jon and I are watching the Ken and Barbies run by with handbags, etc over their heads to shield their siliconed strands from the rain. I'm giggling a little bit - because people trying to escape something falling from above that's basically inescapable always looks a little funny.
At this point my friends, it's after 11pm.. by how much, I couldn't tell you. If I'm on my phone, it's generally to talk to friends with Facebook or check Email (or a map... or Priceline for a hotel deal...). I never checked the time.
We had decided.
It was time to visit Parsifal