Now that I’m focused on shaking up my routine, I knew I couldn’t go to Boston this weekend without doing something outside of what I’d do on a normal visit. And being a rule-follower, I wasn’t willing to let “be a spectator at the Figure Skating World Championships” (you know, something I’ve never done and may never do again) count as “outside my routine” because I got the tickets well before I started this “routine maintenance” plan. And I am nothing if not a stickler for the rules and following a plan. [Note to self: Isn’t the point of this blog to break the rules you usually live by?]
Anyway…I realized I needed something cool and different to do in Boston. Something I haven’t done on my many previous visits to the city. So naturally I started with my life coach, Google. My life coach is just full of ideas! But many of the suggestions were things I’ve already done with one of my best friends who lives in the area: visit the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, walk around the Public Garden, check out the Make Way for Ducklings statues. But one idea caught my eye. It’s pretty touristy so it’s not really outside of a visitor’s “routine” in Boston, but it was something I hadn’t done before: take a Sam Adams Brewery tour.
So on Saturday, I dragged my mom and sister a little off the beaten trail (ie: not walking distance from our hotel) to the brewery. The tour is free (but they suggest a donation to charity). We started by learning about the ingredients in beer. My take home message? I like the smell of hops A LOT more than the taste! Then we learned about the brewing process. I’ve taken brewery tours before so it wasn’t really new information, but I enjoyed the tour guide’s joke about giving the malted barley mash to a local farmer which creates “self-tipping cows!”
Then it was time for the most important part of the tour. Tasting! We tried the Boston Lager, Sam Summer, and the Boston 26.2 Brew, (a beer they only serve during the month of the Boston Marathon). I didn’t love the Boston Lager. The Marathon beer was good. And I’m already a big fan of Sam Summer. But I have to say, it tastes a bit better here:
Than it does here:
Also? My sister and I both thought they were going got be like “Boston Lager is the oldest beer in the U.S.” or some such. Turns out the brewery only started in like 1984. Kudos to the guy who started it and his brilliant marketing with that name. Because I definitely thought our founding fathers were drinking Sam Summer at the first 4th of July celebration!
When the tasting was over, it was time to take the trolley to Doyle’s. It’s the first bar that ever served Boston Lager (it’s also a legitimately old bar…unlike the beer!) and if you show your brewery tour ticket, you get a free Sam Adams glass to take home (with purchase of a Sam Adams beer). According to our hilarious trolley driver, the best things at Doyle’s (besides the Sam Adams) are lobstah and chowdah! So naturally, I had some chowdah with my pint of Rebel Grapefruit IPA:
So in conclusion, Google is an excellent life coach. Because when your life coach says “Drink,” you say “Cheers!”