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Panama: A Hop, Skip, and a Jump Away from Atlanta

Panama: A Hop, Skip, and a Jump Away from Atlanta

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It’s a curious thing about Panama City, Panama: with miles of Gulf of Panama coastline, there are no accessible beaches in the city. Turns out that surrounding Panama City are mud flats and areas that are difficult to access; however, not far from town there are two resorts in Playa Bonita — about a 45-minute ride from Tocumen International Airport — with beaches at their back door.

The Westin and Intercontinental have built gleaming resorts in Playa Bonita and both properties sit on the edge of the beach. When the tide is in, one can walk about the sandy shore and pluck shells from the sand. But when the tide ebbs out, it’s another story as the retracting waters reveal large rock formations otherwise hidden at the muddy bottoms. The Westin Playa Bonita Panama is home to four outdoor pools positioned within feet of the beach, giving guests pristine bodies of water to frolic in while viewing the gulf and Pacific Ocean beyond.

The resort capitalizes on the area’s natural beauty with floor-to-ceiling windows throughout for non-stop views of the scenery.

Rooms are quite comfortable and those with balconies provide guests with panoramic seaside views with ships in the distance queuing up to go through the Panama Canal.

Food at the resort is diverse and good, and around the city one can easily find an array of cuisine. Try Panamanian roasted chicken or corvina, a fish found in the coastal waters of the Pacific and popular in Central and South American dishes. Panama is a cultural mixing bowl and the restaurants, many of which are some of the best in Latin America, and cuisine reflect that.

Among my top picks to dine at in Panama City is Manolo’s, an inexpensive eatery with indoor and outdoor seating right next to a busy sidewalk. At Manolo’s you will find both Panamanian dishes as well as American cuisine. A good thing to know is that most restaurants in Panama automatically include gratuity in the bill.

Taxis (plan to negotiate) and transportations for pre-arranged tours are available at the front door of the Westin to whisk travelers to diverse experiences such as a touring the Panama Canal (worth the trip), Casco Viejo (also known as Casco Antiguo or Old Town), where sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Spanish and French Colonial architecture exists in various stages of renovation and disrepair, and Ancon Hill, the highest spot in the city and a nature reserve.

Getting to Panama City from Atlanta is a breeze. It takes four hours on a nonstop flight on Delta with several other carriers providing one- or two-stop service. The country is in the same time zone as the United States East Coast, and there is no need to exchange money, as the U.S. dollar is accepted — in fact, it is preferred there.

Returning home has gotten a little easier now that Atlanta Hartsfield Jackson International Airport’s international terminal now has scores of automated passport control kiosks to speed American citizens through immigration.

Regional Hot Dog Styles Ranked From Worst To First

You may think ordering a hot dog makes for a boring meal choice. A hot dog is a hot dog, right? If you've ever traveled around the country, you know that's not a correct assumption. Depending on which region of the United States you're in, what you'll get when you order a hot dog will be completely different.

According to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council (yes, that's a real thing), there are at least 18 regional hot dogs across the country. In fact, the differences are so drastic that it'd be a legitimate culinary adventure to drive from coast to coast and eat nothing but local hot dogs. While eating them every day would obviously not be the best thing for your health, it'd be the road trip of a lifetime for your taste buds.

If you don't have time for that ultimate wiener road trip, you're still in luck. To guide you to the ultimate hot dogs in the nation, we've ranked regional hot dogs beginning with the worst and ending with the best. You can use this information to head straight towards the best hot dogs in the United States and skip over everything else.

The Ultimate Guide To Underrated Destinations In Our Favorite Cities

If you're traveling in the United States, you're likely armed with a mental checklist of the iconic sights you're supposed to see.

So if you're heading to New York City, Times Square is most likely your first stop. In Philadelphia, you probably won't leave without seeing the Liberty Bell. And if you are lounging in sunny Los Angeles, you'll undoubtedly stop for a selfie in front of the iconic Hollywood sign.

Now: We're not discounting these destinations. But in the rush to check off boxes, you just might lose sight of the cool attractions that will make your trip truly memorable.

To help you on your next great American road trip, we've partnered with the Hopper from DISH -- which gives you the power to transfer your favorite recorded movies and shows to any device -- to give you some advice on the destinations you absolutely should not skip.

What it’s known for: You’ll get your fill of history -- after all, it's a stop on the Freedom Trail and a meeting hall since the 18th century -- , but you’ll also get your fill of chain clothing stores, middling food, and faux-authentic Boston restaurants, like the one from “Cheers.”

Hidden gem:The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum is frequently overlooked in favor of the Museum of Fine Arts and Children’s Museum -- which, don't get us wrong, are also great. The museum's namesake and founder was a world traveler, philanthropist and enthusiastic art collector with extremely exacting standards. (Case in point: Even decades after her death, paintings remain exactly where she left them.) The jaw-dropping atrium alone is worth the price of admission, and it's pretty kid-friendly. Last but not least, It’s the same neighborhood as Fenway Park, so you can hit both in one day.

What it’s known for: Bright flashing lights, cartoon mascots, teeming hordes of people

Hidden gem: Take a trip to the outer boroughs of Brooklyn and go to Prospect Park. It’s basically the Central Park of Brooklyn (even designed by the same landscape architects, Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux), but without the tourist crowd and surrounding skyscrapers. Even when it's full of activity, it's an oasis of peace for people-watching with your family. If you're in the mood for some more stimulating activities, there is a new ice-skating / rollerskating rink and a summer concert series, Celebrate Brooklyn, a great alternative to the hectic Summerstage series in Central Park.

What it’s known for: Being a huge mall that spans 2.4 million square feet and houses 400 stores and restaurants, two high-rise hotels and three office towers.

Hidden gem: The downtown underground tunnel system is a more novel experience. You'll find an interconnected series of restaurants and shops located 20 feet below the street level. It's more than 6 miles long (connecting 95 blocks), and it actually started out as a tunnel between two movie theaters. Just make sure you know where to enter (through a Wells Fargo or parking lot on Main is recommended).

What it’s known for: Its monuments and museums, of course. But paying for a museum, like the International Spy Museum, can mean a cool $20 for adult admission -- along with the crowds that go with most tourist spots in the District. Why not check out one of the 19 free, amazing Smithsonian museums instead?

Hidden gem: Visit the FDR Memorial, an ode to the iconic president. While not the most imposing monument (we think that the honor belongs to Abraham Lincoln), it's filled with art, inspirational quotations, and natural elements like waterfalls that make this a veritable oasis.

What it’s known for: It's the biggest tourist attraction in the Midwest and it’s basically a glorified mall. You'll trek far from other Chicago attractions only to find carnival games, chain restaurants and fellow tourists.

Hidden gem: Go to the “beach” on Lake Michigan. On sunny days, it's bustling with runners, bikers and frolicking families. Try North Avenue Beach, where you can rent bikes and kayaks.

What it's known for: Before there was Jimmy Carter, the 1996 Olympics and Hartsfield International Airport, Atlanta was known for one thing and one thing only: Coca-Cola. While the company is fascinating, and you DO get all the free cola you want at the end of your museum trip, this tourist trap does nothing to reflect the culture and verve of the Southern city.

Hidden gem: If you are crazy enough to visit "Hotlanta" during the months of May through October, make sure to pack a picnic and spend an evening at Stone Mountain. The free event consists of a dazzling laser display, set to a series of Southern-themed, patriotic rock songs boasting about Atlanta's points of pride. Sure, you can get fancier pyrotechnics somewhere else, but there is something magical about the Confederate soldier mural chiseled into the side of the mountain.

What it’s known for:Fisherman's Wharf is historical, yes, but mostly just a nice place to walk around. You can stroll through Ghirardelli Square (of Ghirardelli chocolate fame), ogle at the sunning seals and eat seafood.

Hidden gem: Grab a bite at PPQ Dungeness Island, a hole-in-the-wall joint tucked away in a distant neighborhood by the beach. We’ve heard the garlic noodle dish is out of this world -- along with the fresh dungeness crabs, of course.

What it's known for: According to guide books and/or history buffs, the Liberty Bell is clearly The Attraction if you are going to hit up the City of Brotherly Love. But with the long lines and little else to see in the center, this may be an attraction you are better off checking out from afar.

Hidden gem: For incredible Philly grub and goods, check out Reading Terminal Market, only a hop, skip and a jump away from all the museums and historical sites. Vendors set up shop with some of the most delicious ice creams, po boys, candles and more. Expert tip: Find the bread pudding with whiskey cream sauce. Your life will never be the same!

What it's known for: The 605-foot tower gives you a great bird's-eye view of the city that is, if it's not raining and you're okay with waiting in line.

Hidden gem:Pike Place Market dates back to 1907 and boasts a year-round farmers market, bakeries, fish markets, butcher shops, produce stands and specialty food stores across 9 acres.

What it’s known for: It’s a hike, and not necessarily our favorite one. Sometimes a sign is just a sign.

Hidden gem: Drive down the Pacific Coast Highway. You’ll enjoy various terrains: mountains, desolate flatlands, adorable and quaint towns with unique cliff sides. It's a winding road, but worth the photo ops you'll get -- you won't even feel like you're in the States anymore. Some tips: If you're driving from Los Angeles, try a 2-hour trip from Palos Verdes up to Malibu. Stop at Dana Point (for the view), Manhattan Beach, Playa Del Rey (for food), Venice (for the famous Venice sign), Santa Monica (to check out the pier) and Malibu (for a refreshment) along the way.

With the Hopper from DISH, you can transfer recorded TV to your mobile device, so you can watch your favorite movies and shows on the road, even without an Internet connection.

I Went to the ER with a Live Roach in My Ear and It Was as Horrifying as You Think

Last year, my husband and I purchased our first house. Lucky for us new homeowners, the house needed minimal work. Any fixer-upping was mostly stuff we wanted to do, rather than repairs that were absolute necessities.

But one annoying, consistent downside of our new home was the presence of cockroaches—otherwise known as palmetto bugs down here—thanks to the Florida climate.

Anyone who has lived in a humid location is probably well-acquainted with these flying, horrifying monsters. I learned that they tend to take shelter in homes in hot or wet weather, although they can show up out of nowhere. Well, roaches kept making appearances in our home, so I finally called a local exterminator.

A few weeks ago, he walked around and sprayed the outside of the house as well as the baseboards in every room in the interior. My husband and I felt good about this. We decided to spend $85 every three months for what we felt was important for our peace of mind. Unfortunately, our sense of relief that we wouldn't find any more roaches was a little premature.

I shot up out of bed, disoriented, and stumbled to the bathroom. I could feel that my ear was not right. I grabbed a cotton swab and gently inserted it into my ear to see what was up and I felt something move.

When I pulled the cotton swab out, there were two dark brown, skinny pieces stuck to the tip. Moments later, I came to the realization that they were legs. LEGS. Legs that could only belong to an adventurous palmetto bug exploring my ear canal.

I started to hyperventilate, and my husband searched furiously for his glasses and joined me in the bathroom. He looked into my ear and confirmed that there was a roach trying to burrow its way to my brain. (OK, I know the ear canal isn’t a hop, skip, and a jump away from the brain, but that’s immediately where my mind went.)

In that moment, my husband was my only hope. He grabbed a pair of tweezers, located the thickest part of the roach that was visible (I KNOW) and tried to very delicately extract it. (For what it’s worth, my husband is a professional percussionist, and all of his hand movements are very precise.)

While my husband made a frazzled attempt to locate clothing, his wallet, and keys, I managed to put on a bra and yoga pants, pull my hair into a messy bun, and corral our dog into the gated area in our kitchen where she can roam freely when we are out of the house—all while having a MOVING ROACH IN MY EAR.

Women can get shit done, let me tell you.

As I walked to the car, I could feel the roach trying to wiggle deeper into my ear canal. It was an awful feeling, one that was not necessarily painful, but psychologically torturous. Think of that humming sound you hear when you plug your ears and press really hard—that’s what I heard and felt, on the left side of my head as the roach tried to crawl. It was bizarre.

Thankfully, the hospital is only about two miles from where we live, and there were few cars on the road at 2 A.M., so we got there pretty fast. He dropped me at the entrance and went to park the car.

Lucky for me, it was a slow evening in the ER, with just one woman accompanied by two little girls in the waiting room. I approached the front desk to tell them my issue. The man sitting behind the desk immediately asked me if I was experiencing pain, probably due to the twisted look of horror on my face. I told him I was not in pain, although I felt like I was going to vomit. I explained to him that a roach crawled into my ear while I was asleep and it was stuck. He asked a nurse to check out my ear with an otoscope (in case I was lying. ) and then confirmed to me and my husband that there was a roach in my ear.

He told me to stay calm and sent us back to the lobby so that I could get a wristband. I hobbled along with my head cocked to the side in the hopes that gravity might take hold of the offending insect and dislodge it. (Spoiler: It didn’t.) I was also whimper-crying, which must have been horrifying for the two little girls in the lobby to witness. I was aware that I needed to get myself together because I didn’t want them to hear us talking and then have nightmares for the rest of their lives about bugs burrowing into their ears.

Once I received my medical wristband, I was taken back to a room where another nurse attempted to take my blood pressure, but it wasn’t working. I was too overwhelmed, and the cuff kept squeezing my arm, all while the roach was still attempting to set up camp in my head. I finally shouted (not at her, just into the void, also it was kind of hard to hear because something was obstructing my ear) that I suffer from high blood pressure and am on medication for it, so there was no way she was going to get a reading that wasn’t stroke level. She agreed to remove the cuff.

Next, I was asked to lie down with my left ear facing upward so that the doctor could come look inside it. He also confirmed that a roach was indeed in my ear (OMFG I AM AWARE, PEOPLE). He told a nurse to get him some Lidocaine, a topical numbing agent, that would temporarily cause a loss of feeling in my ear and simultaneously kill the roach. I was still whimpering, but also grateful/annoyed as my husband attempted to calm me down.

For that reason, I won’t bother trying to explain it and will just hope no one else has to experience this very unique situation. Use your imagination.

It took about two minutes for the roach to die (RIP, asshole). Then, using big, curved tweezers, the doctor removed a few chunks of roach. I kept my eyes shut, but each time the doctor extracted a piece, the nurses and my husband would tell me to look. Like, no thanks. Why would I want to see that?

Once three pieces of roach were removed, the doctor showed them to us on a little napkin. They were small. When intact and in all of its roach glory, I would guess that it was about the size of my pinky nail down to my first knuckle. So it wasn’t super huge—but it was still a roach. In my ear.

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Market Snapshot

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They say that you shouldn&rsquot judge a book by its cover or a location by its exterior. However, the city of Conyers in Rockdale County, Georgia, is a worthy exception to this rule. This city is stunning to behold, and this is a sample of just some of the goodness home buyers can expect once they relocate to this city.

Conyers is the only city and the county seat of Rockdale County, and the quality of infrastructure and services reflect this. It is a hop, skip, and jump away from the bustling metropolis of Atlanta. Conyers is an economic powerhouse in the region, and the more than 12,000 residents represent a very ready market. Most companies have taken note of this and set up shops in the area. The locals enjoy employment opportunities from such firms, while also getting the very best products and services. Some of the employers include Jones New York, Walgreens, Shoe Carnival, and DressBarn.

Conyers has a very serious side, but it can also let loose to reveal a very lively and fun side. Locals can get museum replica products at affordable prices when they visit Museum Replicas, or they can enjoy a drink and mingle with other locals at the popular Marshall Sports Bar and Grill. Horse lovers will find their paradise at Georgia International Horse Park, while skating enthusiasts can have loads of fun at the Romp &lsquoN&rsquo Roll Skating Rink. If you are looking for some inspiration or spiritual intervention, visit the ever-peaceful and beautiful Monastery of the Holy Spirit.

Conyers is best experienced by locals, and you can join this thriving community with the help of New Home Source. The benefit of using our resource is that you can enjoy convenience and comprehensiveness in one place as you search for a new home for sale in Conyers. We have brought all the information on available homes in this area for your perusal. Homes have a price tag of between the upper $100s and the upper $200s. New Home Source eliminates the stress associated with the home search process. You will be amazed by the exhaustiveness and organization present on our site. Trust us to help match you with your next home in Conyers.

Learn more about the new construction, new subdivisions, and the new homes for sale in Conyers, GA, now!

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Townhouse with Mountain Views - Jackson, WY

This stunner is located 15-20 minutes away from the entrance of Grand Teton National Park, 1.5 hours away from Yellowstone and near the skiing at Jackson Hole Resort. Hiking trails are a short drive away at Phelps Lake, and your whole group will treasure the incredible mountain views.

Sleeps: 6
Cost: $374 a night

The Best Hidden Gem Breweries of 2021

Amalgam Brewing

How does a brewery that made our list of the best beers of 2017, and then a list of under-the-radar breweries in Colorado in 2019, continue to stay a hidden gem? Just ask Amalgam’s co-founders Eric Schmidt and Phil Joyce.

Amalgam Brewing remains as elusive as ever. The small brewing project has been a quiet yet powerful player in Colorado’s greater craft beer scene. The brewery is one of the top-rated breweries in the country on Untappd and consistently produces beers beloved by critics and consumers. But, securing some of that precious beer is still a challenging task. Co-founders Schmidt and Joyce also work at fellow Colorado hotspot Westbound & Down so Amalgam is still a side project.

But, heading into the new year, Schmidt and Joyce released a trio of stunning stouts under the Amalgam label and we’re expecting the Amalgam duo to pick up the pace in 2021. Part of the magic of Amalgam is its scarcity and we’re enamored with the “brewer doing whatever they’re excited about” side project model. Amalgam might not become a household name in the new year, but we’re excited to see the small Denver brewery continue to grow and develop in 2021.

Corporate Ladder Brewing Co.

Palmetto, FL

Photo courtesy of Corporate Ladder Brewing Co.

Big things are happening in Florida’s beer scene. Although the Sunshine State has earned its fair share of derision, there are some truly exciting craft breweries making a name for themselves. Last year, we declared Tripping Animals as the hottest craft brewery in Florida, but they may have competition for themselves. Odd Breed and Unseen Creatures produce some stunningly balanced and evocative sour beers, Calusa, Civil Society, and Hidden Spring are brewing “ISO”-worthy hazy IPAs, and J. Wakefield, 3 Sons, Angry Chair, and Cycle have cornered the market for pastry stouts. The point: There are some nationally-recognized breweries in Florida.

But, we’re keeping an eye on newcomer Corporate Ladder in 2021. The Palmetto, Florida brewery hit the ground running with a wildly diverse lineup of beer. Take a look at their taplist and you’ll see a Table Beer beside a pastry kettle sour beside a Schwarzbier beside a double hazy IPA. Now, we haven’t had a chance to try every single beer, but we have been thoroughly impressed by Corporate Ladder’s latest offerings. Beyond just making exciting beers for the sake of hype and Instagram beer fame, Corporate Ladder is making fun beer. There’s a sense of joy with their beer. And, that’s something worth seeking out in 2021.

Elsewhere Brewing

Photo courtesy of Elsewhere Brewing

If Atlanta wasn’t already on your list of future craft beer destinations, I recommend updating that list. Halfway Crooks tops our list as one of the best breweries in the city, but Monday Night, Wild Heaven, and Orpheus are some stellar options too. Plus, Sceptre, Good Word, and Arches are a short drive away.

Elsewhere Brewing is the latest to hit Atlanta’s scene. Like Halfway Crooks, Elsewhere has led with eye-catching design and soft, approachable beers. Moreover, the Argentine-inspired food is a significant upgrade from your standard pub fare. But, the reason Elsewhere makes this list is in its cohesion. The disparate parts–great merch, good beer, tasty food–unite with intentionality and warmth. The brewery is inviting and charming, with lively plants filling every nook and cranny.

We’ve long been praising breweries for intentional design and beautiful communal spaces. Elsewhere has followed in the footsteps of Threes, Humble Sea, Hudson Valley, and others by creating a visual identity that is all their own.

The Good Society Brewery & Public House

Photo courtesy of The Good Society Brewery & Public House

While we’re on the topic of intentional gathering spaces, The Good Society Brewery & Public House could serve as a model example for being a community space. The Good Society earned the Small Brewpub Award for 2020 at the Great American Beer Festival in recognition not only for the beer they craft, but also the work they do in their community.

In fact, The Good Society opened with the mission to select an annual local charitable partner and support them through cash donations and promotion on the brewery’s website and in the taproom. Even during the pandemic, The Good Society managed to raise over $5,000 in donations for the West Seattle Food Bank and Social Justice Fund NW.

We’re excited to follow The Good Society’s mission in the new year and as folks can begin to once again gather in groups, we’re sure The Good Society will be a welcome community hub in the Emerald City.

Junkyard Brewing Co.

Moorhead, MN

While the coasts have typically dominated the last couple years of craft beer discourse, there’s been a renewed focus on less typical destinations. Brooklyn, LA, and New England have been key locales for all things hazy, pastry, and fruited. But, folks like Tripping Animals in Florida, Weathered Souls in Texas, and 450 North in Indiana have taken social media by storm over the last year and change.

If you’re looking for the next frontier in craft beer it might be on the border between North Dakota and Minnesota. Drekker Brewing Co. and Junkyard Brewing Co. are less than a 3-mile drive apart, and the two Midwest spots are among the most sought after breweries on social media. We’ve chosen to include Junkyard as they were a newer brewery to us but both are trending upward in the esteem of modern craft beer fans.

Junkyard brews hype beer. That isn’t a judgment statement, though. All the signs are there: heavily hopped double IPAs, juicy fruited sours, and pastry stouts. There’s a love for nostalgia and decadence packaged in brightly colored labels and stubby crowlers. The difference is that Junkyard succeeds where others falter. We’ve tried plenty of uninteresting, bog-standard New England IPAs and kettle sours. Junkyard’s are genuinely delicious and a ton of fun. Things aren’t taken seriously there’s no need to overanalyze a Junkyard beer. Simply crack open one of the 750ml crowlers with a few friends and enjoy the evening.

Mountains Walking Brewery

Just a hop, skip, and jump away from Moorhead, Montana we land in Bozeman, Montana, the so-called “most livable place.” Here we find Mountains Walking Brewery, one of the breweries we were most excited to discover in 2020.

Mountains Walking isn’t exactly a new operation, but the brewery grew beyond the Bozeman borders winding up on bottle shelves as far-flung as Raleigh, North Carolina. Like many of the other breweries on this list, Mountains Walking has excelled in trendy beers. But, we’ve been thoroughly impressed by some of their “softer” beers like an Italian pilsner and Vienna lager.

Head brewer Lewis McCallister cut his teeth at powerhouses Other Half and Melvin before landing in Mountains Walking. McCallister brings with him a sense of pedigree and true brewing skill, producing beers that could rival any others in the country. If you haven’t already sought out Mountains Walking, we recommend doing so in the new year.

Necromancer Brewing

Pittsburgh, PA

Photo courtesy of Necromancer Brewing

While most of this list has been established or newly opened breweries, we did want to give a shoutout to a soon-to-open brewery. Necromancer Brewing is one of our most anticipated breweries of 2021. The project has been a long time coming, but they’re anticipating a March 1st open date. In the lead up to their grand opening, Necromancer has already brewed a duo of collabs–one with Dancing Gnome and one with Allegheny City Brewing.

Lauren Hughes, formerly of Penn Brewery, is helming the brewing side while marketing firm Top Hat will handle marketing, branding, and business for the brewery. With these first few collabs, Necromancer has already established a strong visual identity. In fact, the brewery will focus on resurrecting bygone beer styles (hence, the Necromancer name) differentiating itself from some of the other big names in Pittsburgh’s beer scene.

North Park Beer Co.

San Diego, CA

When it comes to learning about new breweries, we’re most likely to follow the advice of brewers we trust. So when the folks at Humble Sea recommended we try North Park Beer Co., we were all ears.

In a city as jam-packed with breweries as San Diego, it’s pretty remarkable that North Park manages to produce some of the most lauded stouts around. We were blown away by the few we tried — the balance of flavors and elegance in presentation reminded us of a few other stellar stout breweries in California. Plus, as it turns out, the team at Good Knife Studio, a design firm led by Humble Sea co-founder Frank Scott Krueger, is handling a brand redesign for the SoCal brewery.

In 2021, we expect North Park to truly come into itself. The quality beer and thoughtful design are there. And, folks are certainly starting to take notice.

Trace Brewing

Pittsburgh, PA

Please pardon the hometown pride as we include two new Pittsburgh breweries on this list. But, we feel that it’s well deserved.

Trace Brewing just opened their doors to the public after waiting nearly a year to finally hit the ground running. And the Bloomfield neighborhood brewery is quickly becoming a hotspot for locals. Unlike many of the other breweries on this list, Trace isn’t focusing on one beer style — or even one category of beer. Among the first things we tried were a saison, pale ale, kettle sour, and hazy IPA.

Trace Brewing will function more like your favorite coffee shop (for the record, they will be brewing coffee too) rather than the hot new brewery with lines around the block. Accessibility and comfort are among the top priorities for this brewery. Not to mention the stunning Mediterranean vibes we got from the space. A small outdoor space captures some perfect lighting around 2 PM and the amphitheater seating and vibrant palm trees create a paradise in the middle of Pittsburgh. Oh and did we forget the koelschip room which can be reserved and includes a table that can mount over the koelschip?

There are so many things to look at when walking into Trace whether it’s the wood-burning stove, art deco chandelier, or the faux stained glass. (The result of graffiti painted over windows–how could we forget about the public graffiti wall on the side of the brewery?) Trace might not make headlines for hype-worthy hazies but we’re all for a cozy local spot with solid beer and even better aesthetics.

Wild Provisions Beer Project

Rounding out our list is Wild Provisions Beer Project, a side-project brewery based in Boulder, CO. (If we had a dollar for every amazing side project brewery in Colorado…we’d have a few bucks.) From the team behind 4 Noses Brewing Co., Wild Provisions focuses on foeder-fermented lagers and sours with a dedicated koelschip program.

Wild Provisions has quite a bit of sour beer competition in Colorado. Some of the country’s best breweries reside in The Centennial State. But, we’ve been thoroughly impressed by the first few Wild Provisions beers we’ve tried. There’s a specificity and a sense of place with each one. Plus they happen to taste really good.

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11 Crazy Coffee Drinks You Won’t Find on a Starbucks Menu

I don’t know about you but sometimes I feel myself getting into a coffee rut. I mean, you can only order so many half-caff, low-fat, no whipped cream macchiatos before you start to feel like you are missing out on things the greatest drink in the world can offer.

It turns out that cultures around the world have developed an abundance of alternative ways to make (and drink) coffee, including everything from lemon juice to eggs to alcohol.

So set your french press and v60 aside for a minute and learn about these crazy coffee drinks.

#1 Turkish Coffee

You have probably heard of, if not tried, this one.

Turkish coffee is consumed all over the world but it is the drink of choice in many parts of (you guessed it) Turkey, the Middle East and Eastern Europe.

It is a drink steeped in history, going back well over 400 years with the recipe changed very little.

The preparation is relatively simple. You take water and sugar (recipe in the link below) and boil them together before adding a very fine mix of coffee and cardamom powder and reboiling. After boiling, let it sit briefly to foam before pouring it, grounds and all, into a small cup (think Italian espresso cup).

You then sip slowly and enjoy. The slowly part is key here because if you do not, you learn the hard way what mouth full of coffee and cardamom powder tastes like.

#2 Vietnamese Iced Coffee

Next, we head over to Asia where hot drinks have been commonplace for eons.

Vietnamese coffee has gained popularity over recent years, so you have probably heard of it. It is immensely popular on the streets of Vietnam and variations of it appear all over Southeast Asia.

It is essentially a two-layer ice coffee with sweetened condensed milk as the base with black coffee in the middle and a foam on top. It is traditionally served over ice and made using robusta beans (not my favorite) but using arabica and drinking it hot is just as enjoyable.

#3 Oliang (Thai Coffee)

Now just a hop, skip and a jump over to Thailand where we find Oliang or Thai iced-corn-soya bean-sesame coffee.

Oliang is made by taking your coffee and additional ingredients blend (see recipe below), putting it into a coffee sock, pouring boiling water through it and letting it steep for

10-15 minutes before adding sugar and pouring over ice. You then add sweetened condensed milk (how they do it on the streets of Bangkok), pop in a straw and enjoy!

If for some reason you are opposed to the sock method, you can simply steep the coffee blend in hot water for the same time and then filter it (it won’t be traditional though).

#4 Yuan Yang (Coffee with Tea)

Coffee? Tea? Why not some of both? Yuan yang is a favorite drink in Hong Kong so much so that the Starbucks stores in Hong Kong actually had a limited time offering of it as a Frappucino.

Yuan Yang is made by making strong black tea in a pot, stirring in evaporated or sweetened condensed milk and coffee, then sweetening to taste. Add some shortbread cookies and you have yourself an Asian twist on high tea.. ahem, coffee.

#5 Mazagran (Portuguese Lemon Coffee)

Next, we head over to Portugal where they have found other unique takes on coffee, specifically adding lemon to it. Now you may not think that coffee and lemon sounds intuitive, but this iced drink can actually be incredibly refreshing.

It is essentially a coffee lemonade made by taking strong coffee and mixing it with lemon juice and sugar to taste. You then pour it all over the ice, kick back and enjoy your fresh take on lemonade.

#6 Greek Frappé

Greek Frappé by Tilemahos Efthimiadis (photo removed from Flickr)

Staying in Europe, another refreshing take on the world’s greatest drink the renowned frappé, especially loved throughout Greece.

To make, you add a small amount of cold water, instant coffee and sugar to a jar or shaker and shake vigorously for 10-20 seconds or until it is incredibly foamy.

You then pour the mixture over ice, add water and milk to taste and voila, you have created a frappé!

Recipe: Greek Frappe Recipe (I Need Coffee)

#7 Swedish Egg Coffee

Now up to Scandinavia where they have created a new take on coffee for breakfast. Popular in both Sweden and Norway, egg coffee is exactly what it sounds like.

To make it, you mix a raw egg with coffee grounds and a small amount water and mix it until it has the consistency of, well, an egg-coffee slurry. You then take the slurry, pour it into a pot of boiling water, mix, strain and serve.

The result is supposedly one of the smoothest and creamiest cups of coffee you will ever have make sure you use good eggs though.

Recipe: Swedish Egg Coffee (INeedCoffee)

#8 Irish Coffee

Alcohol and coffee, what else do you really need? Almost everyone has heard of, if not tried an Irish coffee, though most people simply use Baileys rather than making the real thing.

All you need for this bonafied beverage is your coffee of choice, Irish whiskey, brown sugar and some whipped heavy cream (or just whipped cream from a can if you’re lazy).

It makes an excellent after-dinner dessert drink, or, you know, something for breakfast.

#9 Pharisäer (German Rum Coffee)

Continuing our alcoholic trend, Pharisäer, or rum coffee. It is a decadent drink that originated in Germany but can really be enjoyed anywhere in the world.

Similar to the Irish method, you simply take your favorite strong cup of coffee, add sugar and then add in a shot (or more) of rum before topping with whipped cream and a dusting of cocoa. Also, a good thing to remember is that you are not technically supposed to stir this drink once it is assembled, but rather sip it through the layer of whipped cream.

#10 Cafe de Olla (Mexican Coffee)

Nearing the end of our trip is cafe de olla or Mexican cinnamon coffee. While it does not contain alcohol, it is similar to Irish coffee or a pharisäer in that it is more of a dessert than a drink, but there is no shame in that.

It is incredibly easy to make, you just take water, coarse coffee, brown sugar, and a cinnamon stick and boil it all together. You then take it off heat and let it infuse for about 10 minutes before straining and serving you can optionally add whipped cream for extra richness.

The cinnamon pairs excellently with the coffee and adds another depth of flavour while the brown sugar adds decadence that plain white lacks.

#11 Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony

Last on our crazy list is more of a ritual than a type of drink but bears an honorable mention. Similar to a tea ceremony in Japan, the coffee ceremony takes into account everything from the type of cups and pot that are used to the atmosphere of the environment.

It is traditionally performed as a sign of friendship and welcoming and should never be turned down as it would be a great insult to the host.

To begin, the woman (traditionally it is a female that performs it) will burn incense to ward away evil spirits and will continue to burn it throughout the ceremony. She will then set a jebena, or clay coffee pot, filled with water and place it over heat before taking green coffee beans and cleaning them over hot coals.

After the heat removes the husk, the hostess will then proceed to roast the beans over the hot coals similar to how one might use the stove to make popcorn she will typically roast the beans until they are medium to dark brown.

The freshly roasted beans are then ground in a mortar and pestle and added to the jebena where the entire mixture is brought to a boil before serving in handle-less cups.

The entire process can take several hours and each part should be treated with reverence and respect. If you ever get the chance to attend a ceremony be sure to take advantage of the opportunity!


So there you have it 11 unique and crazy ways to spice up coffee, not that it needs it.

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Nobody's having a happier Friday than Lil Durk . who skipped and hopped his way outta jail after posting $250k bond in his attempted murder case.

The rapper couldn't have been more ecstatic late Thursday night after he was sprung outta jail. As we reported . a judge granted him bond after a hearing Thursday and agreed Durk is NOT a flight risk. The release, though, does come with some restrictions.

For starters . Durk will have a curfew from 11 PM until 7 AM. He'll also have to wear an ankle monitor at all times and he's prohibited from having any contact -- direct or indirect -- with gang members. He also can't be near nor possess any weapons and must stay at least 200 yards away from the victim.

As we first reported . Durk turned himself in to authorities nearly a month ago, after an arrest warrant was issued in connection to a February shooting outside a restaurant called The Varsity.

He was booked last month for 5 felony charges . including criminal attempt to commit murder, aggravated assault, possession of a firearm during commission of a felony, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and another charge of associating with a criminal street gang to participate in a crime.

Watch the video: Hop, Skip And Jump (June 2022).


  1. Shaheen

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