Monthly Archives: March 2016

Beware QC On Tap is Back

For some reason, America’s On Tap craft beer festival franchise, is coming back to the Expo Center on Saturday, April 16th. I heard nothing but negative feedback from the attendees last year; ran out of the good beers they did have, it was too few tickets for too many dollars, the lines were outrageous.

And yet, they return….and I know why! This is a huge, bi-state craft beer market, filled with people that will show up, will wait in line, and will appreciate true craft. However, we are a spoiled bunch of Quad Citians; not only do we have 6 breweries within the 4 quads but many more in the outer lying areas. We also have 2 home brew clubs that are filled with incredibly talented individuals, we have a meadery, a couple of distilleries, a beer university and a local beer historian!

To put it simply, we are no joke. The Quad Cities knows about its beer and the greatness that’s being produced today. That’s why I’m still boycotting this ridiculous affair. Once I make up mind, I’m pretty adamant, I felt the exact same way last year:

2015 Article on Why I Would Not Go to QC On Tap.

The Cold Room – Project #1

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1921 is massive. And it needs a ton of work. However, the house itself is in solid shape, most of my tasks are cosmetic but they’re still things that I want to do and come with several benefits attached. Because my home is so big, I’m taking things one room at a time, it’s the only conceivable way for me to tackle the ‘to-do’ list without going crazy.

I chose the Cold Room for my first project. It’s the least used room on my floor so it could stand to be “under construction” for any length of time. We call it the Cold Room because it was just that, before my father replaced all of the windows in the house. Every Fall we would put plastic over the windows in all the rooms, a daunting task that took all weekend long typically, even with all 3 of us working. Now with the energy efficient windows, I close one of the two vents going into the room in the wintertime, because it gets super warm. But the name remains.

AH5A0041This is what the room looked like for the last several years. It was my television room, just off my bedroom, on my side of the house.

First thing I did was remove the carpet…

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In both rooms on my side of the house, under the carpet are wood floors that have been painted only about two feet in, all the way around the room. I’m guessing there was a rug “installed” here and has long sense been removed.

The room has fake wood paneling on the walls and I did a little research, decided to paint it. I sanded the walls down, then wiped them off, then taped all the edges.

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I chose a neutral paint color. I have 6 very large rooms, 2 bathrooms, a walk in closet and two huge hallways. I’m going to try and keep things in a similar color palette without making it all look the same. I also have some very high ceilings, so I’ve got to keep it light. I bought a 5 gallon bucket of this paint and intend on using it in the Entry Way and the Fireplace Room as well. And quite soon I believe.

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I’m just about there…..I’m getting really excited!!

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Finally found the right rug, pillows, and art! (Thanks to my moms for the painting.) As soon as I can get someone over here to help me hang it up in a not so crooked fashion, I’ll post the final pic, room completed ūüėÄ

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My Quest for the Best Burger

I love tacos. And pizza. And macaroni and cheese. Whenever I crave these favorite foods of mine, I almost always know where to go to satisfy my craving. However, cheeseburgers are a bit different. There’s a lot of different varieties and a lot of different ways burgers can go wrong. Sometimes I have great ones at an establishment, then on my next visit the burger is absolutely terrible. (This happened to me at Boozie’s in downtown Davenport recently. I used to love their burger and the last one I had was near inedible, it tasted like grill smoke and onions.) Sometimes I just want a plain ol’ cheeseburger, a nice,¬† flavorful patty with a the few simple ingredients to speak for themselves. Other times I want a burger that has magic on top, like fried cheese curds or a poblano pepper.

So here I go, on a quest for the best burger in the QCA. (However I will list some honorable mentions from out of town because I travel a lot. And I eat a lot of burgers.) In no discernible order, as each burger is on this list for its own reasons..

Bass Street Chop House – Can you say ‘gourmet’? – Moline, IL

IMG_1876Right now Chef Doug Lear is creating a new gourmet burger regularly. It’s not exactly weekly, not on a consistent schedule, but there’s always one available at the bar. Now, you may think that $15 is a bit much for a burger, but, it will be one of the BEST burgers you’ve ever had. If you order a beer, with tip, plan to spend $25. Treat yourself to this little gem. My friends and I have had a few different versions of the burger in this gourmet burger series and every single one of them has been worth it. Bass Street Chop House is located at 1601 River Dr #100, Moline, IL 61265.

Lee’s On 14th¬† – A true, classic burger – Rock Island, IL

IMG_2117Lee’s has, hands down, one of the best classic cheeseburgers out there in the QCA. They will deliver it with the cheese still bubbling. MMMMM.

Rooster’s Sports Bar & Grill¬† – Let’s talk about Bacon Jam – Rock Island, IL

I don’t have a picture of this burger….yet. I have had their Bash Burger twice now and it is amazing. It’s a bacon burger but not only has strips of bacon (that Rooser’s cures themselves) on it, but is garnished with bacon jam. Yeah that’s right, bacon JAM! It is so sickly sweet and delicious. I had bacon jam for the first time at Barley & Rye, it is currently on their meat and cheese platter and it is so decadent – ¬†I highly recommend it with the magic blue cheese they have. The second time I experienced bacon jam was at Rooster’s, and the third was this past week at a delicious diner in Iowa City called Pullman’s. That’s the pic below.

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QC Coffee & Pancake House – The Burger Not On a Bun – Rock Island, IL

This is another meal at this cafe that was recommended to me multiple times. It’s only an 8 ounce patty but this burger is filling. There’s the beef, bacon, cheese, pico de gallo, served within a tortilla. It is a delicious burger, and if you order it with a side of fruit, it almost feels healthy.

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Central Standard – Oh No You Didn’t! Burger – Davenport, Iowa

Though this burger can be a bit greasy, it is absolutely worth it. Topped with fried cheese curds and fried pickles, cheese and buffalo sauce. This is such a savory treat, and they have a great beer list to choose from. I would go on the off hours, during the week or for lunch though, they get pretty busy during the busy, weekend hours.

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Barley & Rye – The Bacon, Egg, and Poutine Burger – Moline, IL

Decadent. Rich. Filling. Amazing. I have never had french fries quite like this, they were perfect, they were soaked in the cheese/gravy sauce of the poutine but weren’t soggy at all, just so savory. Yum.

(Also, I’ve been asked what’s in the mason jar – smoked gouda tomato bisque. Don’t wonder, you already know, it was delicious.)

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Front Street Brewery РThe Cajun Burger РDavenport, IA

This burger is a wonderful combination of sweet, spicy, and savory. Front Street makes their own pickles and jalape√Īos…or would it be that they pickle their own pickles…? Anyways, they make for delicious garnishes. Throw on some jalape√Īo-crusted bacon and Pepper Jack cheese, you have yourself one delectable burger. Pairs nicely with an IPA.

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