Food in Andalusia

In Spain, food isn’t just about sustenance. It is an art and a way of life. This is what I love about food and one of the many things I love about Spain.

The perfect weather, laid-back lifestyle, and beautiful people were enough to sell me on the idea of Andalusia, Spain. But this amazing region does stop there. Spain is world-renowned for their cuisine, Andalusia even more so, for their tradition of serving free tapas! I was in a foodie’s paradise while also in literal paradise.

Spanish Cuisine

Spanish cuisine has a unique flavor and style thanks to their varied history and climate. Two of Spain’s most famous dishes are paella and jamón. Paella also happens to be one of my favorite dishes in the world. It is a rice dish originating from the region of Valencia, the neighboring region to Andalusia. There are several types of paella, but my favorite is seafood paella, which requires the rice to be cooked in seafood broth along with a hefty helping of fresh seafood. It is heavenly.

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Photo by Kaitlin Dowis on Unsplash

Jamón is one of Josh’s favorite dishes in the whole world. It is cured ham most often cut directly from the leg before serving. Like most cured hams, it is deliciously salty and flavorful. We not only enjoy the flavor, but also the show of it all. I would love to one day have a leg of pork sitting up on my kitchen wall, ready for when guests arrive. There is something very intimate and special about it.

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Photo by Z S on Unsplash

Spanish Tapas

Tapas are small dishes used as appetizers or snacks. They are most often enjoyed along with a pitcher of sangria or a local beer. The word “tapa” translates to “lid” or “cover”. It is believed that tapas may have originally been created as a literal top for one’s drink, a slice of bread to keep the flies out of your beer. There are several other theories, some of which are quite funny, but we found this one to be our favorite…

Anthony Bourdain did an excellent piece in the Province of Granada. This is a 4 minute clip about tapas.

As tourism throughout Spain has increased, the distribution of free “lids” for one’s drinks has decreased. People still enjoy tapas, but throughout most of Spain they are no longer complimentary and must be ordered separately. The region of Andalusia, however, has held on to the tradition of complimentary tapas as a way of life. They feel it creates a better feeling of community and encourages socializing. Because of this, it is very common for diners throughout the region to be served a free tapa with every drink order.

Food in Andalusia

I could not believe that Andalusian tapas were being served for free with drink purchases. It seemed too good to be true. But time and time again, pub after pub, restaurant after restaurant, we were treated to delicious drinks and amazing, FREE tapas. On top of that, even the full-sized dishes were incredibly cheap and well made. Check out this single meal we enjoyed one day at the local, lake-side restaurant:

Round One – Tinto and Beer ($3.95)

We sat ourselves at a lovely table overlooking the village lake. When the server arrived, I ordered a tinto de verano (translated as The Red Wine of Summer) which is one part red wine and one part soda. Josh ordered a beer. The server returned with our drinks, then again a few minutes later with a plate of six shrimps and a large pile of green olives.

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I was so excited to eat, I forgot to take a picture first. Haha!

Round Two – Pinchitos ($2.03)

Although I knew we could simply continue to eat delicious free food, I opted to order a small plate of pinchitos. They are similar to a kabab and originate from the times when Spain was under Moorish rule. We were shortly served four perfectly prepared pork skewers, along with some slices of fresh bread.

Food in Andalusia - Tapas

Round Three – Tinto and Beer ($3.95)

Upon delivery of our pinchitos, we ordered another round of drinks. They arrived shortly after, along with another delicious tapa. This time, we were served two slices of lightly toasted bread topped with cheese spread and Spanish tortillas. Spanish tortillas are not the same as Mexican tortillas. Some people called them Spanish Omelets, but I thought they seemed more like a potato quiche. They were thick, creamy, and absolutely delicious!

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Round Four – Jamón and Queso ($8.50)

Once again, I let my stomach do the talking and ordered off the menu. I asked for a large portion of jamón and queso. The server returned promptly with a big plate of cold cured meats, slices of cheese, and a basket of warm bread. Although far from free, it was still well worth the price. It tasted so fresh. I’m salivating just thinking about it.

Food in Andalusia - Jamon and Queso

Round Five – Tinto and Beer ($3.95)

We could have easily stopped eating by this point, but I wanted one last drink for the road. So, we ordered one last round of drinks right as the kitchen was closing. This time we got a bowl of hand-made snack mix. While eating in restaurants in the touristy areas of Granada, we were either charged $1 for tapas or given a tapa like this. It was just their way of saying “Socializing time is over. We want to go home.” It wasn’t fancy, but it was tasty and the perfect ending to a perfect afternoon.

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The Damage

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We had several meals just like this during our month house sitting in Andalusia. Every-other night for dinner, we would walk to Freila’s best (and only) tapas bar. We would order two rounds of drinks and one main dish. Our tapas were always free and always amazing. One time, we even got a plate of six, full garlic squid, a dish that we estimated would have cost us at least $12 anywhere else in the world. At Bar El Veneno, our entire dinner cost $10! The Spanish put a lot of love into their food and I could taste the difference. Everything we ate tasted fresh and was cooked to perfection. And if that wasn’t good enough, the low prices were unbelievable. The meal I outlined above, with the five dishes, six alcoholic beverages, and a view of the lake cost us $22!

Spain is a magical place with food that left me screaming and kicking across the border. There hasn’t been a day since we left that Josh hasn’t had to listen to me whine about how much I love the food in Andalusia. “Spain, I love you and I promise that one day I will return and never leave.” – Jen

Spanish Beer

Our adventures in tasting beers around the world continues in Spain. Although I frequently mixed things up with my beverage choices, adding in the occasional tinto or sangria, we did enjoy our fair share of Spanish beers… ten unique brews to be specific.

Spanish Beer - The Places We Live

The Spanish beers did not provide us with much variety in flavor, but they were exactly what I wanted out of a beverage on a hot day. They were light and refreshing. My favorite of the collection was Estrella de Levante, a pilsner brewed in the province of Murcia. It was light, smooth, and surprisingly malty.

Food Lover’s Paradise

If I haven’t made it clear enough, I am in love with Spain, its people, and its food. From the refreshing beers and free tapas, to the carefully prepared Spanish dishes, there is something for everyone to love about Spanish cuisine. In Spain, food wasn’t just about sustenance. It was an art and a way of life. The meals brought together the community. Bars were regularly filled with laughter and restaurants packed with extended families. This is what I love about food and one of the many things I love about Spain.

 


Adventures in Switzerland

Our adventures in Switzerland lacked for nothing. We explored our old town, visited the even older town of Rapperswil, the city of Zurich, and we of course ate everything we could get our hands on.

Living in the beautiful country of Switzerland has been a dream come true, albeit a very expensive one. As Switzerland is ranked as one of the most expensive places to in the world to visit, we ended up staying closer to home and spent most of our time hiking and visiting local shops. However, our adventures in Switzerland lacked for nothing. We explored our old town, visited the even older town of Rapperswil, the city of Zurich, and we of course ate everything we could get our hands on.



Exploring Our Town

Our little village of Männedorf was so adorably Swiss. It was clean, green, and walkable from end to end. We visited nearly every inch of the village from the farm lands on the hilltops to the factories on the lake. Even on a cloudy  day (of which there were many), Männedorf seemed to be alive with vibrant color.

Rapperswil

At only eight miles south of Männedorf on Lake Zurich, Rapperswil made for the perfect mini adventure in Switzerland. It is the perfect blend of new and old. Dominating the skyline, Rapperswil Castle was built in the 1200’s. Now, the town is home to one of the most significant transportation junctions in the region. We rode in on the ferry and enjoyed an evening of exploring the castle exterior as well as the modern shops that lined the major roadways.

Zurich

Even though the train ticket was a little on the spendy side, we did eventually opt for a quick trip over to Zurich. It was a beautiful sunny day and I wasn’t going to waste it. Our adventures in Switzerland’s major financial city took us through old town, new town, and any shop that smelled of bread.

All of the Food

Our adventures in Switzerland would not be complete without taking a moment to taste as many things as we could afford. My favorite treat was a pretzel sandwich with prosciutto, butter, and cheese. It was heavenly! The beer wasn’t too bad either 😉

Moving On

Our stay in Switzerland was not nearly long enough. At only ten days, we were just barely getting the lay of the land. As we left the country for our next house sit, we promised each other that we would return as soon as we could. I think I would like to try kayaking through some of the many lakes and rivers. Or maybe do some skiing. Either way, we will be back to see more of this colorful country and its natural beauty.



Eating and Drinking Our Way Through Karlsruhe

One of our biggest worries when deciding to spend this next set of adventures in Europe was the budget. The cost of living is notoriously high in the EU, and unlike in Asia and Australia, we were at a currency disadvantage, so our meager $26 per day wasn’t going to stretch nearly as far here as it did in, say, Thailand. Therefore, we were expecting to eat at home a lot more often, and a lot more peanut butter and jelly.

Thankfully, the price of food in Karlsruhe was very affordable. When we arrive at each new sit, we like to do an initial grocery run and pick up some staples, usually consisting of cereal, instant coffee, milk, bread, peanut butter, jelly, chips, rice, zucchini, carrots, garlic, 4 chicken breast, and ice cream. At home, this would cost between $20-$25. In Karlsruhe, we were able to get all of the above for about the same price, around €20. As an added bonus, the beer ended up being cheaper than we were expecting, around €2 each. With some careful meal planning, we’d be able to keep our usual menu and stay well under budget, which was quite the relief.

Dining Out in Karlsruhe

The restaurant prices in Karlsruhe were also quite affordable, though not enough for us to eat out as much as we wanted. Still, we made it a priority to try out the local cuisine, and frequented the bakery down the road almost daily. I loved the pretzels, donuts, and hand-made bread loafs! And it wouldn’t have been a successful trip to southwestern Germany if we didn’t try a Black Forest Cake, which was delightful.

Black Forest Cake in Karlsruhe, Germany. Three layer chocolate cake filled with layers of chocolate cream and cherry jelly. The outside is frosted with chocolate cream and chocolate shavings.

In an attempt to try local food in Karlsruhe that a blue collar worker might enjoy on her lunch break, we headed to one of the nearby lunch counters. Unlike almost everyone we met in Germany, the staff there did not speak English. We fumbled our way through ordering with our poor German and ended up getting stuffed red peppers, spaetzle (thick, egg pasta), and alcohol free beer. It wasn’t at all what we wanted, but I would be lying if I didn’t say it was all delicious.

Stuffed red peppers covered in a dark brown sauce, spaetzle, and Vaeltins beer.
Not the most attractive meal, but still tasty

Our favorite places to eat, however, were the beer gardens. They were often beautifully located, had outdoor seating, and inexpensive food. We tried several beer gardens and loved them all. The beers were cold and plentiful and the food was basic, but well-made. They were the sort of places we could sit for hours… and did. My favorite was the Rheinkiosk Seyfert, located off a quiet bike path next to the Rhine River. I ordered the cashier’s favorite wurst (sausage) and a bottle of Hoepfner Hefe-Weizen.

Beer Garden Food in Karlsruhe - The Places We Live

German Beer Tasting

Our worldwide beer tasting tour continues with a truly amazing selection of German beers. The majority of our tastings were purchased at the grocery store to keep the prices down, though we did enjoy a pint or two at the beer gardens and a local pub. However, our most enjoyable tasting experience, by far, was with our house sitting host over dinner. She had read on the blog that we enjoyed drinking beer, and prepared a wonderful spread of flavors for us to taste. It was a great way to get to know one another and get a taste of what the locals enjoy.

German Beers - The Places We Live

For the most part, we had only two styles to choose from, either Pilsner or Hefeweisen, but each brew had subtle differences in flavor that made each one feel special and unique. My favorite brew of the trip was the Warsteiner Premium Verum, a German Pilsner. With one new tasting per day, plus a wonderful spread by our host on our final day in town, I ended our Karlsruhe adventure with 15 new German beers.

German Beer Collection - The Places We Live




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Palisades State Park

South Dakota’s Palisades State Park is about half an hour’s drive from the city of Sioux Falls and is located a little ways off Interstate 90, which connects Seattle to Boston. We’ve been driving along I-90 since we left Chicago and will be following it all the way to Billings, Montana, where we will veer off south towards Yellowstone National Park. We needed a place to camp along the way, so we decided to stay at Palisades State Park. It ended up being the perfect spot to relax and unwind for a few days, with plenty to see and do in the park itself, and the neighboring city of Sioux Falls to explore.

USA Interstate 90 runs from Seattle to Boston including Seattle, Mount Rushmore, Badlands National Park, Palisades State Park, Chicago, Niagra Falls, and Boston. The Places We Live

Palisades State Park

The park is a bit on the small side at just over 150 acres (61 ha). It includes a campground, which accommodates both tent campers and RVs, four hiking trails, river access, and day-use picnic spots. Despite its size, it packs a big punch with quartzite cliffs to explore, a river to paddle on, and historical markers about the area.

The park fee is $6 per vehicle and campsites start at $17. The highlights of the park can be viewed in a single day, but if you have the time, I strongly suggest staying a night or two. We spent three days at the Palisades State Park Campground without getting bored. In addition to the park, there are hiking trails in easy driving distance, a golf course, historic small towns, and Sioux Falls near by.

We saw several groups of campers with kayaks and canoes, which I was super jealous of. The water moved at a steady speed past the beautiful landscape. The river itself was lined with steep cliff edges and narrow canyons that eventually folded back into the rolling hills and farmland, creating some interesting transition zones that you could only really explore from the water. The deep gouges in the middle of the farmland made the whole area feel as though it was created by accident.

Devil’s Gulch

Three miles north of Palisades State Park is Devil’s Gulch. It is a slot canyon with free hiking trails and water access. There’s a famous story about the outlaw Jesse James escaping capture at Devil’s Gulch. While on the run from the law, he (supposedly) convinced his horse to jump the 20 foot (6 m) gap across the gorge. There’s a bridge that spans the now famous gap, and while it makes for a great story, I’m not sure I can believe a horse made that jump. I like to think it did.

The bridge over Devil’s Gulch

We walked along most of the hiking trail at Devil’s Gulch. It was a fairly easy hike, except for the acorns that littered the ground, which slid out from under our feet and made us slip. To our left was the ravine with its steep edges and deep water. To our right, there was rolling farmland with hardly a hint of danger. The walk was wonderful and provided another great example of the dramatic landscape of the area.

Fernson Brewing Company

Only 20 minutes drive from Palisades State Park is Fernson Brewing Company. This was an excellent little break from our outdoor adventures. It is a great place to have a few drinks, experience the local beer culture, enjoy the air conditioning, and get a little free WiFi.

Small brewery near Palisades State Park in South Dakota.

My favorite beer was the Lion’s Paw Lager. The brewery says that, like the story of the lion with a thorn in it’s paw, the brewers “took a recipe that could have been aggressive and made it smooth”.

We strongly recommend spending the weekend near Palisades State Park. There is so much to see and do that we barely scratched the surface. This was our first impression of South Dakota; if Palisades State Park even hints at the beauty that this state holds, I may have to move here.


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Eating Nashville

Nashville is our final stop in the South before heading to the Midwest, so naturally, we decided to stuff our faces with as much Southern BBQ as we could eat. We fell in love with Southern food years ago, and like Mexican food, it is a style of cooking that I simply can’t live without. Sadly, it seems to be severely underrepresented in the wider world. I wasn’t going to allow us to miss this opportunity.

Biscuit Love

The first stop on my list was Biscuit Love. It is a concept we have seen scattered around the Southern states and had been wanting to try. It never failed, however, that we would happen upon one of these restaurants within moments of it closing for the day. So, when we arrived in Nashville, I was sure to map one out and check the opening hours.

Meal at Biscuit Love in Nashville. Plate with a bowl of cheesy grits and half of a sandwich. The sandwich is a runny egg on top of fried chicken, sandwiched between a biscuit.

We arrived just after opening, and were greeted by a line going out the door. Thankfully, there were a few seats available at the bar, which is open seating and full service. With just the two of us, we slipped past the line and grabbed seats right away. I must admit, it felt a little naughty walking past all the impatient line waiters, but they had the same opportunity we did, so I didn’t feel too bad. I ordered a cappuccino, an East Nasty, and a side of cheesy grits. The cappuccino was delicious and had fun foam art (you know, because that’s important). The East Nasty is a sandwich featuring a “buttermilk biscuit, fried boneless chicken thigh, aged cheddar, sausage gravy” for $10. And of course, when offered the chance to add an egg over easy, we said “Yes please!” It was pretty amazing. Although difficult to admit, the grits were actually the star of breakfast. The texture was perfect and the sharp cheese gave it a really nice bite.

All the Beer

We didn’t have time to do a full brewery tour in Nashville, but we still put an effort into seeing as many as we could. Upon high recommendations from our host, we visited Yazoo where we got a flight of six brews. They did an amazing job with their branding, with a large selection of merchandise and their name and logo on everything.

Flight of six beers in a rack labeled Yazoo, viewed from above. 2 dark beers, 2 light beers, and 2 amber beers with light foam.

Smith & Lentz Brewing Company was a short walk from our house. We had four tasters there and loved each one. The bartender was very knowledgeable and the bar was comfortable and fun. After some debate, we ended up taking home the Vienna Lager to enjoy again.

Try a Nashville to Jack Daniels Distillery Bus Tour with Viator

Now don’t think we only drink beer. We love alcohol in all its various forms. To prove it, we visited the tasting table of one of the only wineries in Nashville, Natchez Hills. Some grapes don’t grow well here, so this winery makes wine with a mix of their grapes and grapes from other vineyards. I was a little leery at first, but we found that their flavors were very inventive and fun. My favorite was the Naughty Tea, a Southern sweet tea wine. It tasted just like sweet tea, but with a boozy kick. I could definitely see it making an appearance at a picnic with friends, especially since it was also sold in cans!

Naughty Tea, a Southern sweet tea wine. Bottle next to glass.

Hot Chicken

Hot Chicken is Nashville’s signature dish. It is fried chicken with either a wet or dry rub of spicy goodness. Inspired by Anthony Bourdain’s “Parts Unknown” episode in Nashville, we visited Bolton’s Hot Chicken and Fish. It was a small, simple restaurant with a few picnic tables for seating, one order window, and a short menu. We both ordered some chicken tenders (mine not spicy, Josh’s medium heat), mac n’ cheese, baked beans, and sodas. The food came out quickly and it came out HOT… temperature-wise, that is. The heat from the spice was certainly present, but it wasn’t overpowering. It came on slowly and continued to build as we ate. We both really enjoyed it and loved how tender and juicy the chicken was. Up until that moment, my favorite fried chicken was my own. Now Bolton’s holds my heart for my favorite fried chicken.

On the one hand, I am really disappointed to be leaving the South so soon. On the other, I am tired of gaining weight from all of this delicious food! There’s something so comforting about Southern food, as though it were made special for me every single time. It’s a simple kind of magic that just makes you feel good, as long as you don’t pay too much attention to you pants gradually becoming too small.


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Yazoo Brewing Company, Nashville - The Places We Live  Biscuit Love Nashville - The Places We Live


 

 

Space Coast Breweries – World Beer Tour

Our worldwide beer tasting adventure continues with a tour of the Brevard County breweries on Florida’s Space Coast! This area of Florida is famous for the Kennedy Space Center. Located on Cape Canaveral, visitors have the opportunity to walk amongst the retired spacecraft and meet astronauts. You can even find places to watch rockets launch into space from the nearby beaches. If oceans are more your thing, there is also Port Canaveral, where you can watch the cruise boats head out to see while enjoying a cold one. I am a huge fan of the Space Coast! It is an excellent weekend getaway from the crowds and theme parks of Orlando, and there’s a lot to experience for microbrew fans. So grab a glass and settle in for a trip to the Brevard County breweries on Florida’s Space Coast!

Brevard County Breweries

  1. Bugnutty Brewing Company
  2. Charlie & Jake’s Brewery Grille
  3. Cocoa Beach Brewing Company
  4. Dirty Oar Beer Company
  5. Florida Beer Company
  6. Hell ‘n Blazes Brewing Company
  7. Intracoastal Brewing Company
  8. Lost Shirt Brewing Company
  9. Playalinda Brewing Company
  10. Quarters Brewery and Arcade

Taster flight of six beer tasters at Bugnutty Brewing Company. Brevard County Breweries, Florida

Bugnutty Brewing Company

Our first of the Brevard County breweries is Bugnutty Brewing Company, located in a strip mall on Merritt Island. Every so often we run into breweries where their first, second, and third priorities are beer, beer, and beer. That seemed to be the case at Bugnutty Brewing Company. The tap room was comfortable and clean, but it was fairly small, with no outdoor seating area. There was a kitchen on site, but it wasn’t open at the time of our visit, so we weren’t able to taste anything on the menu. It felt like pretty much any other bar, with some TVs above the tap handles and a selection of board games for patrons. It was all about the beer, and it showed with how creative and tasty each one was.

We ordered the $16 USD flight that included six beers of our choice. We selected Suzi’s Red Belly Ale, Dark Matter Black IPA, Raspberry Lipgloss On a Pig, Red Wheat & Blue, their house root beer, and Key Lime Pie. I found all of the flavors to be very interesting and unique. The Raspberry Lipgloss On a Pig was created for a competition in which the brewers had to choose ingredients out of a hat; the mix of raspberry, bacon, and chocolate gave it a delicious, savory dessert flavor. Of all the breweries we visited, Bugnutty earns itself extra points for creativity in brewing.

Address: 715 N Courtenay Pkwy, Merritt Island, FL 32953 [Map]

Phone: +01 (321) 452-4460

Hours: Mon – Sat 2PM-10PM, Sun 1PM-8PM

Links: Website


Exterior of the Cocoa Beach Brewing Company Brewery and Pub.

Cocoa Beach Brewing Company

Hidden away in the hustle and bustle of hotels and beachfront shops in busy Cocoa Beach is the unassuming Cocoa Beach Brewery. There is little to no parking or advertising for this “nanobrewery”, as it was described to us. The building itself is just a converted, right off the main drag and a block or two from the beach. We entered through the simple front door, walked through the living room littered with kegs and bags of ingredients, to the back of the house where a kitchen may have once been. Now, there is a small bar, three taps, a couple of tables, and a friendly bartender who is very well versed in the Brevard County breweries and beer culture.

We had a $3 USD flight of Cocoa Beach Brewing Company’s three nano-brews. On this visit, they were offering the Dirty Blonde Ale, Key Lime Cerveza, and Cocoa Beach Pale Ale. Each one was delicious and had a unique flavor. I particularly enjoyed the Dirty Blonde and gave it a five star rating on UnTappd.

Address: 150 N Atlantic Ave, Cocoa Beach, FL 32931 [MAP]

Phone: +01 (321) 613-2941

Hours: Tue – Thu 1PM-9PM, Fri – Sat 1PM-9PM

Links: Website


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Exterior of the Florida Beer Company Tap Room. Brevard County Breweries, Florida

Florida Beer Company

The next stop on the tour takes us from possibly the smallest craft brewery in the state to what is undoubtedly the largest, Florida Beer Company. This Brevard County brewery is attached to the company’s warehouse in Cape Canaveral, making it an obvious attraction for beach-going tourists and NASA interns alike. We couldn’t really pin down the vibe of the place; it felt less like a brewery and more like a corporate sports bar, with lots of TVs, loud guests, and bartenders who seemed to have been selected more for their appearance than their beer knowledge.

We ordered the $8 USD flight that included four tasters of our choosing. We selected the Carib Lager, Hurricane Reef Pilsner, Key West Southernmost Wheat, and the Hurricane Reef IPA. Despite the varying styles, they all tasted fairly similar, adding to the big corporate vibe. Each one was easy to drink and refreshing, but none of them stood out in any way. We joked that they were the perfect craft beers for people who hate craft beers.

Address: 200 Imperial Blvd, Cape Canaveral, FL 32920 [MAP]

Phone: +01 (321) 728-4114

Hours: Mon – Wed 1PM-9PM, Thu – Sat 1PM-11PM, Sun 1PM-6PM

Links: Website 


Taster flight with 6 tasters at Hell N' Blazes Brewery in Melbourne, Florida. Brevard County Breweries

Hell N’ Blazes

We enjoyed Hell N’ Blazes so much that we came back twice! It is conveniently located in historic downtown Melbourne and has a staff that is crazy friendly and knowledgeable. I loved the clean wood and metal decor and the excellent game room in the back. Although Hell N’ Blazes does not currently serve food, they did offer some free bags of pretzels and said they hope to be opening a kitchen soon. If their food is even half as good as their beer, you can bet that we will be one of the first in line to try their new menu. Hell N’ Blazes was definitely our favorite of the Brevard County breweries.

Hell N’ Blazes has a large menu of in-house brews. Their $8 USD flights consist of four, 4oz pours of your choice. For our first visit, we tried all of the their core beers, including the Causeway IPA, Huggins Hefewizen, Orange Blossom Honey Wheat Ale, and the Northern Flow Lager. I was happy with each of them, giving each no less than four out of five stars. My absolute favorite was the wheat ale. It seemed like the perfect Florida beer, with a citrusy orange flavor that enhanced the rest of the bouquet.

Address: 1002 E New Haven Ave, Melbourne, Florida 32901 [MAP]

Phone: +01 (321) 821-4052

Hours: Mon-Thu 4PM-11PM, Fri 12PM-2AM, Sat 12PM-2AM, Sun 12PM-11PM

Links: Website



Josh playing Maximum Force while drinking a beer at Quarters Brewery and Arcade. Brevard County Breweries

Quarters Brewery and Arcade

One of the newest members on the list of Brevard County breweries is Quarters. I am a huge fan of barcades (bars that are also arcades). Quarters Brewery and Arcade takes this idea to the next level, and is my very first brewcade! The menu of in-house micro-brews are still small, as is the game selection, but what better way to spend the day than to hang out in historic old town Melbourne, Florida while drinking a local brew and playing vintage games. I think I might be in heaven!

Flights are not yet available at Quarters, so we tried a pint of Dad Breakfast English Porter and the Princess Pale at $6.25 and $5.75 USD respectively. The porter had a fun hint of s’mores flavor, while the pale was easy to drink with only a hint of hoppy goodness. I sense good things to come for Quarters as they continue to grow and expand.

Address: 903 E New Haven Ave, Melbourne, FL 32901 [MAP]

Phone: +01 (321) 586-2142

Hours: Mon – Thu 4PM-11PM, Fri 4PM-2AM, Sat 12PM-2AM, Sun 12PM-11PM

Links: Website


Wrapping Up

And thus concludes our tour of the Brevard County breweries on Florida’s Space Coast! All in all, we had a great time exploring the local beer culture and getting the chance to spend some time mixing it up with the locals. We found the area to be the perfect hidden paradise in which to enjoy our favorite drink of choice. If you’re planning to visit the area, you would do well to schedule some extra time for exploring the booming beer scene of Brevard County, Florida, USA.


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  Brevard County Breweries on Florida Space Coast - The Places We Live World Beer


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Breweries on the Mornington Peninsula, Australia

Our beer tasting adventure around the world continues with a tour of the breweries on Australia’s Mornington Peninsula! Mornington Peninsula is southeast of Melbourne and is known for its beautiful beach views, nature hikes, and wineries. It is the perfect weekend getaway from the urban life of Melbourne, and the ideal setting for our first community brewery tour. So grab a glass and settle in for a trip to the Mornington Peninsula breweries!

Mornington Peninsula Breweries

A map of the Mornington Peninsula Breweries with pictures and labels: Hickinbotham of Dromana, Jetty Road Brewery, Mornington Peninsula Brewery, Red Hill Brewery, St Andrews Beach Brewery - The Places We Live


Hickinbotham of Dromana

Hickinbotham of Dromana. Dromana VIC Australia. Fireplaces with a paddle of five beer tasters in the foreground ranging from light to dark. - The Places We Live World Beer

Hickinbotham of Dromana is definitely more of a winery than a brewery. The restaurant is surrounded by farmland and vineyards, complete with lawn games and farm animals. The restaurant is upscale with lovely decor, white tablecloths, and quality cuisine. However, it is also family friendly; when we were there, we saw parents out playing with their children, and what we think was a toddler birthday party.

As part of our Mornington Peninsula breweries adventure, we ordered an $11 USD paddle. It came with five 100 ml tasters from a good sized collection of prize winning brews. We tried the Hix Summer/Aussie Pale Ale, Pilsener, Pale Ale, Wheat Beer, and Irish Stout. All of the beer received our top marks, but the Summer Ale in particular was amazing! We even purchased a $7 USD “stubby” (bottle) to take home and it was just as delicious a few days later. Josh and I both agreed that the Hix Summer/Aussie Pale Ale is one of the best brews we have ever had. So yummy!

Address: 194 Nepean Hwy, Dromana VIC 3936, Australia [MAP]

Phone: +61 03 59 810355

Hours: Wed-Mon 11AM-5PM

Links: WebsiteFacebookInstagram


Learn more about where and how we lived for FREE on the peninsula.


Jetty Road Brewery

Jetty Road Brewery, Dromana, VIC Australia. Four glass tasters stand in a line: two light colored, one brown, and one cider. The Places We Live World Beer

Jetty Road Brewery is tucked away in an industrial zone, which is one of my favorite styles for a brewery. The slogan at JRB is “By Locals, For Locals” and they seem to be living up to that, with a laid-back, blue collar feel, mixed with an upscale hipster decor. It definitely had the feel of a neighborhood hang out spot for those with an appreciation for fine food and good beer.

We ordered the $11 (USD) paddle of four tasters. Each paddle comes with the Pale Ale, Amber Ale, IPA, and a choice of either the Northern English Brown or Apple Cider. We selected the cider, which was crisp and delicious, but I think we should have had the brown instead. The beers were all quite tasty, but the pale ale stood out above the rest. Of the Mornington Peninsula breweries, Jetty Road’s collection seemed to have a bit more carbonation, giving their beers a nice, crisp flavor. I also wish I had ordered food because their farm-to-kitchen menu looked amazing!

Address: 12-14 Brasser Ave, Dromana VIC 3926, Australia [MAP]

Phone: +61 03 59 872754

Hours: Thu 4PM – 9PM, Fri & Sat 12PM – 11PM, Sun 12PM – 9PM

Links: WebsiteFacebookInstagram


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Mornington Peninsula Brewery

We weren’t able to visit all of the Mornington Peninsula breweries, and in an unfortunate twist of fate, the one we missed is actually named “Mornington Peninsula Brewery”. However, we did pick up a selection of their beer from the local bottle shop, and thoroughly enjoyed them. The brewery is located in the city of Mornington, at the Northern end of the shire. They have a large selection of brews which are distributed widely across the country.

It’s a shame we weren’t able to visit in person, because the Brewery Bar looks amazing! Their kitchen specializes in wood-fired pizza, complimented by a selection of Mornington Peninsula wines (in addition to their beer, of course). Check out their website for specials and a schedule of live music events.

Address: 72 Watt Road, Mornington VIC 3931, Australia [MAP]

Phone: +61 03 59 763663

Hours: Thu & Fri 3PM – 11PM, Sat 12PM – late, Sun 12PM – 7PM

Links: Website


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Red Hill Brewery

Red Hill Brewery. Red Hill South, VIC Australia. Menu next to a line of half empty beer tasters. The Places We Live World Beer

Our tour of the Mornington Peninsula Breweries continues with a trip to Red Hill Brewery. The city of Red Hill is surrounded by rolling hills, windy roads, and their famous vineyards, perfect for cruising with the top down on a sunny day. Just past the Red Hill Vineyard lies the collection of buildings which houses Red Hill Brewery and their attached restaurant… which specializes in American Southern food. These guys know the key to my heart.

We ordered a $9 USD paddle that came with four 130ml tasters. The paddle included their Golden Ale, Pilsner, A Crazy American Lost in Belgium, and Red Bike Session IPA. My favorite was the Golden Ale, but I really enjoyed the unique flavoring of the Belgian. It was described as a fruity and yeasty Belgian that was “dangerously hopped” with USA-style hops. We also grabbed some Mac n’Cheese and cornbread to compliment our liquid treats, and were not disappointed. Red Hill was the smallest location we visited, but they are punching above their weight when it comes to delivering great food and drink.

Address: 88 Shoreham Rd, Red Hill South VIC 3937, Australia [MAP]

Phone: +61 03 59 892959

Hours: Thu – Sun 11AM – 6PM

Links: Website Facebook Instagram Twitter


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St. Andrews Beach Brewery

St Andrews Beach Brewery. Fingal, VIC Australia. Front page of the menu next to a labeled beer tasting paddle with four full glasses. The Places We Live World Beer

If I lived here, St. Andrews Beach Brewery is absolutely the kind of place I would take my friends on every sunny weekend. It is located on the grounds of an old horse racing stable, with 92 acres of tracks that have been turned into gardens and farmland. The restaurant gates let into the open-air stables that have been refitted with tables, lighting, and televisions. I could have easily spent all day there… and nearly did. As it was raining during our visit, we opted to enjoy our brews inside next to the fire.

St Andrews Beach Brewery. Fingal VIC Australia. Nice quality picnic benches with umbrellas sit on a green lawn. In the background, horse stables have been converted to intimate dining rooms with chairs, tables, and flat screen tvs. The Places We Live World Beer

For our Mornington Peninsula breweries adventure, we ordered the $9 USD paddle that included four pre-set tasters. The set included their 6 Furlongs Pale Ale, The Strapper Australian Lager, Box 54 Golden Ale, and Race Day Pilsner. I appreciated that each brew had a unique logo and name; it shows that the brewer really took some time and care with each one. It’s a simple, professional touch that blended well with the overall atmosphere. Our favorite was the Pilsner, which had a nice, crisp flavor with just the right amount of hoppy bitterness.

Address: 160 Sandy Rd, Fingal VIC 3939, Australia [Map]

Phone: +61 03 59 886854

Hours: Mon – Thu 12PM – 5PM, Fri 12PM – 7PM, Sat & Sun 11AM – 7PM

Links: Website Facebook Instagram


Wrapping Up

And thus concludes our tour of the Mornington Peninsula breweries! All in all, we had a great time exploring the local beer culture and getting the chance to spend some time mixing it up with the locals. We found the people of the peninsula to be warm and inviting, and had a great time at each and every stop along the way. If you’re planning to visit the area, you would do well to plan some extra time for exploring the booming beer scene on the Mornington Peninsula.


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