Soused in SanFran – Part 1: The Pregame


This here is Part One of the Grand Caliventure of November 2011.



The Lady Friend and I had been discussing a trip out to California, for a number of reasons. She has a friend living in San Francisco, and Sissy moved out to some God-forsaken wilderness camp in Sonora, which is in the Sierra Nevada range. The Lady Friend loves Sonoma wines, and there are a number of legendary breweries in the area, so we made the plans and left Boston on Wednesday evening.

We parked next door to an old friend. Should’ve stopped for a quick preflight IPA.



We had some time to kill in Terminal C at Logan before the flight, and there happened to be a Boston Beer Works location right near our gate. Why, yes, a tasty beverage would be lovely before the flight, I though to myself, and helped myself to a Back Bay IPA, followed by a chicken sandwich and fries for dinner. When the bartender handed me the beer, she said “Have a nice flight,” and I pulled a Brian Regan by saying “You too!”





Yeah. Starting the trip off like an idiot.
Back to beer, the first of the voyage:

Back Bay IPA
Boston Beer Works

Nose: Mild hop bitter. Light cereal grain sweetness.

Taste: Hop bitter – piney. Sharp start, but eases off quickly. Clean, but dry hop resin finish makes you thirsty for more.


While sitting in the crowded restaurant, a group of three thirty-somethings shuffled in and parked at the table next to us, and set off one of my biggest peeves: ordering proper drinks. Keep in mind, we’re in Boston Beer Works, a small, local franchise of brewpubs that make some tasty beers. With a suspected hometown of Malden, Revere, or Lynn the first girl, clad in a green Red Sox hoodie, asked what the lightest beer was. Sigh. “The Pub Light,” was the waitress’s reply. Her male counterpart ordered a blueberry beer, and the second girl ordered a Pinot. There was an awkward pause until the waitress prompted her for more clarification “Pinot…?” “Grigio,” was the decision. Yes, Malden, there’s more than one kind of Pinot. Thanks for the info. After a few minutes, the fourth member of the group joined, and initally asked for a White Zin, prompting a visible shudder from the Lady Friend, (she’s a red zin drinker, and white zin is kind of her kryptonite) before having a Reisling. You know what? Here’s a vodka and Sprite, since apparently you just want sugary alcohol.
So, you’re at Boston BEER Works, and you’re ordering white wine. I understand that selections are limited at the airport, but there were several other restaurants they could have gone to without invoking my anger at hearing a light beer, a fruit beer, and two white wines ordered at a brewpub franchise. Here’s the deal: get on that plane, and don’t come back. There’s plenty of other douchebags just like you in Everett. Or Chelsea.





After a long, dark flight, where I exhausted my entertainment possibilities (including a masochistic viewing of “Engineering Disasters”) after about 45 minutes and elected to just put my head facedown on the tray table, we finally arrived. We taxied to the apartment where we were staying, which belonged to Lady Friend’s friend JJ. They met on their French winey trip some years ago and have visited and traveled together since. JJ is une petite fille blonde originally from West Virginia. Like Country-Roads-Take-Me-Home-type West VA. She had visited SquirrelFarts HQ earlier this year for a small cocktail party, and christened me with an appropriately Bacchanalian pseudonym, so we were previously acquainted. She has a soft, southern lilt that amusingly comes out only after a glass or two of wine. Over-hyphenation irritates her. Her husband is in dental school, and graciously allowed the Lady Friend and I to crash at their apartment for our trip. This would be SFHQ in SFO. Time to hit the futon and prepare for the adventures to come; the imbibing would begin in earnest on the morrow.


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One thought on “Soused in SanFran – Part 1: The Pregame

  • Lady Friend

    Slight correction – JJ and I met on our STUDY abroad semester in the French Alps. Though there was certainly a decent amount of wine drinking during our blissful six months there, we were actually there to study International Business. We became roommates by chance and bonded over our love of traveling, teas, skiing, Economics, pain au chocolate and eventually wines. She still holds her place as my favorite co-locataire :)