NSB’s New Brewery: New Smyrna Beach Brewing Company

I’m always on the look out for new local things and this past fall, my mom sent me an article about a new craft brewery starting up in New Smyrna. Over President’s Day Weekend, I finally got the chance to go there with Alison and I must say that these New Smyrna natives sure do know how to boil up a tasty batch of beer at the New Smyrna Beach Brewing Company.NSB's New: Brewery: New Smyrna Beach Brewing Company

We wandered on in one Sunday afternoon during an art festival and the place was slammed–always a good sign. We found a couple open bar stools and were quickly greeted by one of the bartenders. As we were looking at the beer menu on the opposing wall, I noticed that they didn’t have my go-to beer style, an IPA. I told her what I look for in a beer–something hoppy, limited caramel flavor, and liable to make the typical Bud Light drinker wince, she urged me to try their Shark Bite Pale Ale and I was sold. Alison on the other hand like something not so rough on the palate and opted for their Coronado Cream Ale.

All I have to say is that those were some tasty brews. The Shark Bite Pale Ale had the right amount of bite to it to satisfy my crazy taste buds without being too overwhelming. I wasn’t a huge fan of the Coronado Cream Ale, after trying a sip of Alison’s pint. it was just too lite for me, but the taste was there. She; however, loved it and I can see why. Very rich taste with a hint of sweetness will draw a lot of people to love this beer, even non-beer lovers. I think it’d also serve as a great palette cleanser after having a strong beer.

The inside is pretty small and has a surf town feel to it. There’s a couple high-top tables by the window and the bar itself seats about 20 people. Makes for a great setting to spark new conversation and make new friends over beer. They even display their beer making equipment and ingredients right behind the bar and below their flat screen TV. They’re planning on offering growlers to their customers as well. It’s a legal way for the customer to walk out the door with fresh beer. All you’ll have to do is buy a resealable/reusable bottle, have them fill it with beer, seal it up, and you can walk right out the door with some beer to enjoy at home.

While I was talking with the owners, Chris Coyle and Sara Lammers, they kept emphasizing how they wanted to keep everything local and fresh. When you look at the beer menu, you’ll see that the names of all their beers are in some way related to New Smyrna Beach. If you’re new to the area, just ask Chris and Sara about the significance to each beer name or you can even ask a New Smyrna Beach local and they’ll be happy to tell you all about it.

They plan on keeping things fresh by having five of their beers on tap all the time. A couple more taps are going to hold other beers from different craft brewers across Florida. Chris was saying that when you walk into the New Smyrna Beach Brewing Company, their beer is going to served from a keg with a high turnover. When you’re ordering their beer, it’s going to be two or three weeks old, rather than sitting in a warehouse for a month or two before being sold.

When you’re looking for a fresh brew, swing on by the New Smyrna Beach Brewing Company at 112 Sams Avenue. They’re brewing beer Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday and are open for beers Thursday and Friday 2:00 pm-10:00 pm, Saturday noon-10:00 pm, and Sunday noon-7:00 pm.

If you ever get a chance to visit the New Smyrna Beach Brewing Company, let me know what you think!

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Simple Super Bowl Finger Foods for any Weekend Warrior

Let’s get the elephant out of the room. I’m extremely hurt that the Seahawks rode the Broncos all the way to the Vince Lombardi Trophy, but that’s sports for you.

Now that that’s out of the way, let’s get on with the show. My friends Josh and Meagan hosted a great Super Bowl party and asked everyone to bring some Super Bowl finger foods or a drink to share. I initially thought of bringing my mom’s famous cream cheese, chili, and cheese dip.

That sucker’s loaded with cream cheese on the bottom of the pan, chili on top, and shredded cheese to finish it off with some Frito Scoops to dip.Super Bowl Finger Foods for any Weekend Warrior

All that sounded easy and appetizing, but I saw this recipe for some cucumber feta rolls. It looked tasty and I kind of wanted to be like Peyton Manning and call an audible of my own and throw everything off, since people usually expect me to bring my favorite recipe: Party in a Bag, made famous by my dad and brother.

  • Go to the pantry, grab your favorite bag of chips, open it, watch the game…DO NOT by any means put the chips in a fancy bowl/serving dish.

After I saw how easy and appealing the recipe looked, I was all like Omaha! Omaha! cucumber feta rolls for the win! and headed off to the grocery store to grab some missing ingredients.

This recipe didn’t require any cooking, just some slicing, dicing, and rolling. The no cooking is what got me interested.

In case you want to make some Super Bowl finger foods for next year or any other party occasion, here’s what you’ll need.

  • 2 cucumbers
  • 6 ounces crumbled feta
  • 3 tablespoons greek yogurt
  • 2.5-3.5 tablespoons finely diced sun-dried tomatoes or red bell pepper (I used sun-dried tomatoes)
  • 8-12 pitted kalamata olives
  • 1 tablespoon roughly chopped oregano or dill (I used oregano)
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • Dash of pepper or to taste

Start out by slicing your cucumbers longways, using a mandolin or peeler. Slice them however thin you’d like, just keep in mind that you’re going to be rolling dip inside them.

Now you’re going to add your feta and greek yogurt to a medium size bowl. Take a fork and mash it all together. Once it’s mixed, add your sun-dried tomatoes or red bell pepper, olives, oregano or dill, lemon juice, and pepper to the bowl. Continue mashing it all together with a fork.

From there, take 1-2 teaspoons of your mixture and place it at the end of a cucumber slice. Roll up the mixture in your cucumber slice so it resembles a sushi roll and use a tooth pick to hold it all together.

Place those rolls on any fancy tray you’d like and serve it up to your guests.

It only takes about 15 minutes in total to put this all together and you can expect to put together about 20 cucumber feta rolls. They were fantastic and a hit with everyone at the party. Heck, I think they were gone before kick off!

Do you have any favorite Super Bowl finger foods?

This recipe was originally from the GoodLife Eats blog and was found at the FitFluential blog.

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Gear Review: Sly Fox Nutrition Snack Bars

Being allergic to peanuts can make it really tough when it comes to choosing foods. Luckily, my peanut allergy isn’t too bad and I can still eat foods that are manufactured in the same facility and on the same equipment that manufactures food with peanuts, without keeling over or stabbing myself with an EpiPen. However; I try to stay away from those foods as much as I can. I’ve found it helps me reduce my sniffles and the amount of sinus infections I get each year (my record is 5, so far).

When I heard that Sly Fox Nutrition made snack bars for outdoor enthusiasts without peanuts and made their snack bars in a peanut-free environment, I thought it was to good to be true.

Sly Fox Nutrition Cocoa Berry Snack Bar

Vanilla Bean Snack Bar from Sly Fox Nutrition

Sly Fox Nutrition Pumpkin Pecan Snack Bar

Peppermint Chip Snack Bar from Sly Fox Nutrition

I got to try and incorporate four different flavors of their snack bars into my training: Vanilla Bean, Peppermint Chip, Pumpkin Pecan, and Cocoa Berry. The flavors were quite tasty and no sniffles on my end after eating them.  Below is a little more in-depth view of what I thought about these snack bars and when I used them.

Pros:

  • REAL food
  • “Light”
  • Peanut-free
  • Tasty

You’ve probably tasted TONS of snack bars that say they’ll make you “perform better.” I’m not sure about you, but I’ve found that to actually be far from the truth. A lot of these companies will use organic ingredients, but then load them up with sugar and other processed ingredients. To me, this makes them overly sweet, slows me down, and they just “sit” in my stomach after crash landing inside me like a meteorite hitting the earth. The snack bars that I tried from Sly Fox Nutrition were completely opposite of everything I just described to you.

Made with real ingredients, it didn’t feel like a massive rock from outer space was making a crash landing inside the mid-section of my body. It just made my hunger, disappear. They never slowed me down and frankly, gave me that quick push to get me going before my work out (more on that in a minute).

These peanut-free snack bars were quite tasty as well. The first flavor I tried was Cocoa Berry and was expecting to be overwhelmed by the taste. I was completely caught off guard when I took my first bite and it tasted like a fairy lightly dusted the snack bar with Cocoa Berry dust. At first I did taste the Cocoa Berry, but then the taste wore off and I actually tasted all the different ingredients. It took a little getting used to, but once I knew what to expect I actually enjoyed that more than being overwhelmed with artificial flavors.

Con:

  • Lack of distribution

The biggest complaint I have is that I have to order these snack bars online. Having only been in business since December 2012, they’re only sold in the Phoenix, AZ area and online. Personally, I prefer to have the convenience of being able to go to my local grocery store and pick some off the shelf when I get home from work.

Best use:

  • Pre-workout
  • During workout

The snack bars have been a great pre-workout snack. I’ve been training for my Century Ride coming up on November 9th and these have been the perfect snack bar to much on before I go out on my rides. It’s just enough to ease that after-work hunger, without making me feel like I have to give it back 20 miles into my ride. I’ve also been munching on them at the climbing gym when I start hearing that growling noise in the pit of my stomach. It keeps my stomach full without turning my low gravity climbing day into a high gravity day.

Remember that this is a snack bar and that’s what I think it should be used for, to make your hunger subside between meals. I’m no dietitian, but I wouldn’t recommend these snack bars as a meal substitute.

The big question is: would I eat these snack bars again? You betcha I would! Where else can you get real food packed into a snack bar, that’s manufactured in a peanut-free environment? The only company I know about would be Sly Fox Nutrition. These snack bars get 4.5 out of 5 stars in my book!

You can get more information about the company, their story, snack bars, and other products on the Sly Fox Nutrition website: www.slyfoxnutrition.com. Sly Fox Nutrition is also great at keeping in touch on Twitter and Facebook.

I was provided with snack bar samples, but the views expressed are solely mine.