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Three Reasons To Use Clamshell Packaging When Selling Produce At A Farmers Market

Posted by on Aug 26, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Selling fruits and vegetables at a local farmers market can be very lucrative for someone who loves to grow fruits and vegetables at their home. If you are someone that enjoys selling produce at a farmers market, you need to be sure that you make the process as easy as possible. The following guide walks you through a few reasons why you may want to consider clamshell packaging for your produce the next time you sell at the farmers market.     Pre-Portion the Produce   When you sell produce at a farmers market, you often have to weigh and determine the cost of the produce on the spot. This can be a bit time consuming, especially when you have a lot of people trying to buy your produce at one time. Pre-portioning the produce in the clamshell containers allows you to attach an exact price to each container so that you can easily ring someone up for their purchase and move on to the next order quickly so that no one is waiting too long to purchase your produce. Label the Produce The clamshell containers can be labeled with information about your produce. This can be a great form of advertising because you can put your contact information on the labels so that people can contact you outside of the farmers market when they want to buy your produce. This also allows you to promote the fact that your produce is organic, pesticide free, or any other key information you want your consumers to know.  Protect the Produce When you are selling produce at a farmers market, it can be difficult to watch every potential customer that comes up to the produce. There have been cases where people have contaminated produce with salmonella in an effort to make people ill. By placing your produce inside of the clamshell containers, you will make it difficult for anyone to contaminate your produce. The clamshell containers will often have to be opened in order to access the produce. If someone attempts to open the containers, it will grab your attention and allow you to stop someone from doing anything to the produce quickly and easily. Clamshell packaging is very affordable, when you buy it in bulk. It allows your produce to stand out from the crowd and many consumers may assume that your produce is of higher quality than the other produce at the market simply because you took the time and effort to place your produce in a...

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5 Amazing Healthy Benefits To Drinking Coffee

Posted by on Jul 15, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Did you know that coffee is good for you? Many people drink coffee because they enjoy the taste, or like the kick that they get from the caffeine. However, there are many studies that have found that coffee has health benefits. Here are 5 of the amazing health benefits that come from drinking your morning coffee. Coffee Can Lessen The Chance Of Liver Cancer Liver cancer is often found in people who drink excessive alcohol. So, if you are someone who enjoys a bottle of wine at night, or a six pack of beer, then you should be drinking coffee. Scientists have found that people who consume several cups of coffee a day have a lowered risk of developing liver cancer. May Protect Against Alzheimer’s A promising study has linked caffeine consumption to a lowered risk of Alzheimer’s. The scientists found that in subjects who consumed caffeine, there was a lowered amount of a protein in the brain that is believed to be a precursor to Alzheimer’s.  A crucial point of the study was that decaffeinated coffee would not provide the same benefits. Parkinson Prevention The research on caffeine and Parkinson’s prevention is so promising that there are multiple companies trying to create a drug based on caffeine. So far, the drugs are still at the research and development stage. However, the good news is that you can lower your risk of developing Parkinson’s by as much as forty percent by drinking two cups of coffee a day. Lowers Your Chances Of Developing Type 2 Diabetes If you like to have a doughnut in the morning with your coffee, then this will make you feel less guilty about all that sugar. It turns out that coffee has been found to lower the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. Unlike type 1 diabetes, type 2 is not something you are born with. People develop type 2 diabetes from bad eating habits. A diet high in sugar is one of the leading culprits. So, while it’s better to not eat a doughnut in the morning, if you are someone who can’t give up the sweets, then drinking coffee will at least help protect you. Prevent Gallstones If a person develops too many gallstones, they might have to have surgery and have their gallbladder removed. Women in particular are at risk for developing gallstones. The good news is that a study found that women who drank 4 or more cups of coffee daily have a much lower risk of developing gallstones. One theory is that the caffeine might cause the gallbladder to “empty” itself more often, and this would prevent stone formation. When making your coffee, you may want to buy k cups and other...

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3 Tips For Making A Great Pizza At Home

Posted by on Jun 5, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Pizza is one of the most popular meals in the country, and with good reason. Pizzas are available in varieties that can appeal to just about any type of palate or dietary restriction. The great news is that, by following the tips mentioned below, you will be able to make a great tasting pizza at home. Make Your Own Sauce The sauce is one of the most important parts of making any type of pizza, mostly because the sauce is going to flavor just about every bite of the pizza. If your sauce is bland, then the whole pizza can end up tasting bland. While it may be tempting to take a shortcut and buy a premade pizza sauce from your local grocery store, you will want to resist that temptation. Sure, it can save you some time, but a premade sauce will often be full of sugars and other unhealthy additives. In addition, a homemade sauce will be fresher because it will not have sat on a grocery store shelf for weeks. Do Not Use A Rolling Pin Whenever you make a pizza at home, try to stretch out the dough without using a rolling pin. This is because a rolling pin can force all of the air out of the dough, which can result in the crust of your pizza being tough and dense. Simply use your hands to work the dough and stretch it out to the size that you want. Sure, a rolling pin can help you get that perfectly round shape, but does the shape really matter? There is no rule stating that your pizza cannot be square, oval, or any other shape, so stop worrying about it and use your hands to create a pizza dough that will be light, airy, and delicious. Use A Pizza Stone Finally, using a pizza stone is absolutely vital in making sure that you have an evenly cooked pizza. This is possible because the pizza stone will often be made out of ceramic, which will distribute the heat evenly across the entire surface of the stone. A nice side benefit to using a pizza stone is that the cleanup process is very simple. In most cases, you can simply wipe down your pizza stone and walk away. The pizza stone will usually not require a lot of scrubbing or soaking to get clean. Providing a great pizza for your friends and family doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to order in or go to a restaurant. By using a pizza stone, making your own sauce, and not using a rolling pin you can easily make a great-tasting pizza at home. Of course, if you don’t feel like cooking, head out to some place like Barros Pizza. You can taste different types and see what kind you’d like to try your hand at making on your...

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Butcher Shop Revival All Over The Country For Nostalgic Meat Shoppers

Posted by on Apr 24, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

You no longer have to wish butcher shops were a reality. You can now shop for healthy meat supplies straight from your local butcher shop. Once a must for meat shoppers back in the day, butcher shops have reemerged much to the gratitude of dedicated customers who want to know more about the meats they purchase. They ask about what animals were fed when they were alive. Many people also want to know whether the animals were treated humanely during their lifetime. Most of all, many consumers want fresh meat that is not prepackaged. Bid Prepackaged Meats Goodbye Forget about being forced to traipse down meat aisles in a supermarket looking to purchase meats. Never again choose meat prepackaged in fancy plastic-wrapped foam trays. You get to choose the meat you want at your local butcher shop. Your butcher is just as pleased to get you exactly what you want, and rest assured that the meats you buy are fresh products that you see before they are wrapped individually for you. How You Plan to Cook Your Meat Determines Cuts You Must Buy Decide what type of cooking you will be doing before you run off to the nearest butcher shop. Will you be grilling steaks or preparing cross rib roasts? Your planned type of cooking guides the butcher into making the right cuts. You will leave the butcher shop knowing that all you have to do once you return home is season your meats and apply the cooking method you have in mind. Try An Alternative Steak If Porterhouse Steaks Are Expensive If you want porterhouse steaks but find them too expensive, there are other steaks that you can purchase. Your butcher in all likelihood will recommend other alternative steaks that cost less. You may want to choose steaks such as ribeye or cowboy ribeye. You might even want to consider bone-in veal chops as a substitute menu. Caribbean Meat Choices From Your Local Butcher If you are originally from Caribbean countries and longing for some down-home menus, ask a butcher (such as one from Custom Quality Meats) to package kidneys, oxtails, pig’s ears and trotters as well as cow foot for you. Now you can take home all of those items and have a field day spicing up the meals with the use of Caribbean seasonings. Have a wonderful experience meeting your butcher and purchasing your fresh and healthy cuts of meat. Also remember that Jamaican Rice ‘N Peas dish is a staple to eat with your choice of meats. Rice ‘N Peas will enhance the taste of the meats. In cooking Rice ‘N Peas, you must add fresh coconut milk to the cooking mix. Bring the mixture to a boil and then cook on a low heat setting. Bon...

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The Healthiest Foods You Can Eat At A Chinese Restaurant

Posted by on Mar 13, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Going out to eat or ordering in is dangerous territory when you are trying to stick to a healthy diet. It is even worse if you are trying to lose weight. Although Chinese food in some ways is one of the healthiest ethnic foods you can consume, there are still some drawbacks. If you want to eat at a Chinese restaurant, or if you just want to order Chinese in for the night, there are some very healthy menu options. Eat Steamed, Not Fried As delicious as all of that fried food is, the high fat content goes right to your abdomen and hips. Instead, try steamed vegetables, which are rich in nutrients and maintain their bright healthy colors. Also, choose chicken, shrimp, scallops or lobster instead of beef or pork as the meat to accompany your steamed vegetables. As for steamed dumplings, leave those off your plate because they are made with fatty meats and high starch wrappers. Skip the Duck Sauce and Use Low Sodium Soy Sauce Instead There are many Chinese sauces and condiments, which are very tasty, but not exactly healthy. Any sauce with an origin in fruit, such as plum sauce and duck sauce, you should avoid. The sugars, both natural and added, push your insulin levels through the roof, making you want to eat more, not less. If you order steamed vegetables and meat, many Chinese restaurants will send a container of soy sauce on the side to season your meal as you like. If you request low sodium soy sauce instead, it makes the condiment drastically healthier. Oil-based sauces are heart-healthy and reasonable substitutes, too. Avoid Rice and Noodles Leave the rice at the restaurant because it is loaded with carbs and has virtually no health benefits. Noodles or pasta of any kind are not any better. If you absolutely cannot live without a little rice on your plate, request whole grain brown rice instead. Brown rice at least has a little fiber and more vitamins in it. For Dessert If you want that fortune cookie, go ahead. Fortune cookies are surprisingly low calorie, so long as they are not dipped in chocolate or coated with anything. As for the Chinese donuts and ice cream, you do not want to know the calorie load there. For the Healthiest Meal Cook at home. It is not the same as going to a good Chinese restaurant, but you can duplicate most of your favorites at home while substituting healthier ingredients and sauces for the less healthy ones in the restaurant. Plus, a good stir-fry makes several days’ worth of meals, just like the orders you get when you ask for delivery or eat out. To learn more, contact a company like Lilac Blossom Restaurant with any questions you...

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3 Types Of Seafood Your Kids Should Try Before They’re 10

Posted by on Feb 11, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Kids come into this world with bright eyes and open minds, but sometime around their 10th birthday they can start to lose some of that open-mindedness. Around that age, many kids start to worry about what their friends think more than what their parents think. That’s why it’s important to give your kids a love of different types of foods as soon as you can, so they can enjoy the bounties of different cultures as adults. Here are 3 types of seafood they should try before they hit double digits: Raw Oysters These delicious gems harvested from the sea have a wonderful briny quality to them, and they’re so flagrant and flavorful that they hardly need any seasoning to brighten them up. Plus, they come packed with tons of nutrients like Vitamin C and Omega 3 fatty acids that can support healthy growth and development. There are numerous varieties of oysters, and they have different characteristics based on where in the world they grow. Teaching your kids how to eat oysters involves a fun trip to a raw bar in which your kids will truly see how sophisticated they are by slurping down the delicious little bites with other foodies. It’s fun to learn about the different oyster regions and learn from waiters and chefs about why they like certain types of oysters over others. Sushi While sushi itself isn’t actually it’s own type of seafood, it incorporates such a vast majority of fish that it’s included in this list. Sushi is quickly growing in popularity amongst the elementary school crowd, probably because it’s flavor combinations seem endless and so much punch is packed into a little bite. Your kids should try all kinds of sushi (including those with raw fish and those with cooked fish), and you probably shouldn’t spend too much time on their differences if you want your child to try them without hesitation. Once you know what kind of sushi you like, be adventurous and try to make it at home on your own. Many mainstream grocery stores now contain everything you need to make sushi: rice, nori, fish, veggies, and rice vinegar (mixed with a touch of salt and sugar). Jellyfish Wait . . . the little jellyfish that you love watching at the aquarium can be eaten? Yes, and it might actually be a good thing for the environment if more people start eating them. They’re starting to take over certain regions of the ocean, so environmentally-friendly kids can feel good about their choice to eat jellyfish. People, mostly in Asia, have been eating jellyfish for years, and they’re a delicacy in several cultures. Even if you don’t start to eat extremely textured and slippery jellyfish dishes every week, your kids will love knowing that there’s a world of food possibilities out there, and that food can be something besides just crunchy or mushy. If you want your kids to continue to explore their world and the possibilities of food, make sure they try these 3 foods while they’re young. They won’t forget the experience, and they’ll likely keep asking for more. For more information, check out companies such as Water Front Bar And...

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Help! What Do You Do With A Big Jar Of Pickled Vegetables?

Posted by on Jan 28, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Have you ever bought a big jar of Italian preserved vegetables, only to get it home and wonder what in the world you are going to do with it? These pickled vegetables are great in many different dishes, and can be used to spice things up. Here are a few ideas. Salad-Italian preserved vegetables are great tossed into salad. They add a spicy, tangy kick that pairs perfectly with fresh Parmesan cheese and homemade Italian dressing. Condiments-Speaking of salad, these veggies can be chopped fine and added to your favorite salad dressing recipe to add a burst of flavor. Try making a simple vinaigrette or mixing them with mayonnaise for an interesting flavor. Sandwiches-Try adding Italian preserved vegetables to any sandwich that needs an extra bit of peppery flavor. You can also create a Muffaletta by spreading a layer of chopped Italian vegetables on a piece of french bread, adding ham, salami, and Provolone cheese, and toasting it for a few minutes until the meat is warm and the cheese is melted. Some people finish this sandwich with a bit of mustard, but it is completely optional. Peas-Many people in the south add a pepper sauce to their black-eyed or purple-hull peas at the table. This sauce is simply the vinegar solution from a bottle of hot peppers. Why not try adding a bit of the liquid from your Italian vegetables, instead? If you have the hot variety, the flavor will be similar to the spicy pepper sauce, but a more mild variety will produce a more subtle pickled flavor. Pizza-Italian preserved vegetables make a delicious pizza topping. Slice them thin and use them with mushrooms for a great vegetarian option, or add them to pepperoni or Italian sausage for a fun twist. Rice-If you are in the mood to try something different, consider adding Italian preserved vegetables to rice pilaf. It will have a stronger flavor than if you were using fresh vegetables, and because the vegetables have already been washed, processed, and broken down some, it will reduce your prep and cooking time quite a bit. Bread-Artisan bread making is another great use for these veggies. Add them, roughly chopped, to your favorite Italian bread recipe for an unusual twist. Soup-To add a depth of flavor to your favorite minestrone or Italian wedding soup, try adding a cup of chopped Italian preserved vegetables to the broth or stock as it cooks down. This would also work well for marinara. After the vegetables have cooked down, use an immersion blender to create a smooth texture. Salsa-Use these vegetables to add a unique twist to your favorite salsa recipe. Just make sure to adjust the acid a bit. If your salsa recipe calls for lemon juice or vinegar, be sure to taste the vegetables before you put them in, and cut back on the acid accordingly. With all of these ideas, you may want to go on and get two jars of Italian preserved vegetables instead of just...

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Keeping Cool Under Pressure: 3 Ways To Manage Perishables During Power Outages

Posted by on Jan 9, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

A power outage strikes terror in any restaurant owner. With their refrigerators full of expensive meats, veggies and seafood, restaurateurs stand to lose big bucks when these appliances are shut down due to electrical infrastructure issues, storms and other service interruptions. How can your business protect those high dollar ingredients during an outage? Take the following steps to rescue your perishable inventory: 1) Have an action plan and train employees how to implement it. While it may add a bit to labor costs initially, designing an emergency electrical outage plan and holding training sessions for your employees will save you money in the long run. Having your staff in a panic, frantically trying to determine what to do first, costs precious time and energy during an emergency. A special notebook with emergency procedures listed should be accessible at all times. The first step is to check your facility’s circuit breakers for a tripped switch. If that’s not the problem, a call to your utility company is the next step to determine if there is a true outage. Have that number posted prominently so there is no delay in making the call. Also post the locations of sources of bagged or bulk ice close to your business. Power companies can often tell you when they expect the power to return, allowing you to prioritize the placement of extremely sensitive perishables. If the power is only expected to be out for a short time, your frozen and refrigerated products should be fine. 2) Consolidate foods to keep them cold longer. In the event of more extended outages, you can keep ingredients colder for a longer time by consolidating perishables. If possible, move all frozen goods to one freezer as soon as you can. This way frozen foods keep each other icy, and less airspace in the freezer means the low temperature can be maintained for a longer period of time. Do the same with refrigerated foods, placing as many as you can into your units until they’re full, and open the fridge doors only when absolutely necessary. For example, to periodically check your thermometers to see if safe temperatures are being maintained. Remember to keep high risk foods, such as proteins, at the bottom of freezers and refrigerators. Low risk foods should be stored high up on shelves. If frozen meat starts to thaw, it could drip blood on breads or cheeses, contaminating these ingredients. If you have a walk-in freezer, consider putting some of your refrigerated items on the walk in shelves. This will only protect products not harmed by being frozen, and won’t work for you fresh lettuces or other produce. 3) Consider a backup power source. Many restaurants in storm-prone areas have installed or purchased generators to power their refrigerators and freezers. Some will kick on automatically when power is interrupted, while other stand-alone generators will have to be fueled, started and then connected to appliances. Contact a licensed electrician or commercial refrigeration specialist to help you determine your wattage requirements to keep perishables safe. Talk with your utility company about safety procedures while using a generator, and find out local ordinances regarding the use of backup power. There are many resources available to help you plan for an outage. This site offers resources for any business to...

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3 Things To Consider When Buying Your First Flask

Posted by on Dec 28, 2014 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Are you looking to buy a flask? Is it for yourself or perhaps a gift for a friend or loved one? Liquor flasks can be a great way to bring your favorite liquor to your next party or cookout. The great thing about a flask is that you always have your favorite liquor on hand and you’re never dependent on the types of drinks that the party’s host may have chosen to serve. In buying your first flask, you may think that size and price are the only two considerations. While those are generally the most important things to look for, they’re not the only things to consider. Here are a couple of other things to think about, both when you buy the flask and when you get it home: Buy steel or pewter. Flasks generally come in either stainless steel or pewter. Both are durable materials. Usually, pewter is more expensive than stainless steel. It also may last a bit longer. While a steel flask could last for your lifetime, a pewter flask could last as an heirloom for generations. A stainless steel flask will have a shiny appearance, while a pewter flask may have a duller and more weathered look. Consider both options before you make a purchase. Don’t drink from an antique. An antique flask may look really appealing. However, it also could be unsafe to drink from. Many older pewter flasks were made with lead. If any of that lead gets into your drink, it could cause lead poisoning, which brings a wide variety of serious medical symptoms. Many antique flasks are found at places like thrift shops, yard sales, and flea markets. Even if the salesperson at this type of location tells you that the flask doesn’t have lead, it may not be credible information. They may not know the flask’s entire history. Rather, err on the side of caution and stick to flasks that were more recently produced. Prepare it for use. If your’e buying a new flask, it’s possible that it may still have some residue inside from the production process. A used flask could have some residue liquor. Either way, clean the flask thoroughly before you or anyone else drinks from it. The best way to clean a flask is by rinsing it with hot water mixed with a bit of lemon juice. Do not put soap in the flask. The soap will stick to the sides of the flask and will end up infusing the taste of the liquor. Once you’ve rinsed it, let it sit overnight with the top off. If you’re not sure what type of flask to buy, talk to someone at a reputable wine and spirits store. They can show you different options and point you in the right...

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Out-Of-The-Box Pizza Party Ideas For Kids

Posted by on Dec 15, 2014 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Most kids love pizza and parties, so why not combine the two for the ultimate birthday bash? Rather than taking your child and his or her friends to the local pizzeria, host a pizza-themed party in your own home. Not only will the kids be more comfortable, you’ll be able to be more creative with everything from the party decor to the favors. Whether you’re having an overnight or daytime party, the pizza is sure to please. Here are some out-the-box pizza party ideas: 1. Throw an Italian-themed party from beginning to end. Before the soiree, decorate the main celebration spaces, such as the kitchen and living room, with a pizzeria-inspired touch. Place red-and-white-checked tablecloths on the tables, hang a homemade sign that says, “Welcome to (insert your child’s name here)’s pizza party,” and blow up red and white balloons. At the end of the party, send kids home with scratch-n-sniff pizza stickers and parents home with jars filled with homemade olive salad. 2. Host a make-your-own pizza party to ensure that each guest gets exactly what he or she wants. Transform your dining room table into a pizza-making station, complete with bowls of marinara sauce, shredded cheese, pepperoni, tomatoes, onions, olives, and other goodies. Give each guest their own pizza dough to roll out and then top with their favorite fixings.  3. Hold a “dessert pizza” party as a creative twist. You can either prepare a meal for party guests before the sweet bash begins, or have them eat dinner prior to arriving. Give each guest a round cookie “crust” and set up a buffet-style decorating station. You can provide the typical dessert offerings, such as frosting, small candies, and whipped cream. You can also add healthier items such as cut-up pieces of fruit. Instruct kids to top their cookie “pizzas” with their favorite, bite-sized toppings.  4. Delight guests with a specialty themed pizza party. For instance, if your child’s birthday is close to Halloween, make whimsical jack-o-lantern-inspired pizzas and decorate the party table with plastic spiders. If your youngster loves cats, make pizzas with cat face designs, complete with triangular dough ears, black olive eyes, and green onion or green pepper whiskers. Enhance the party spaces with themed decor items, such as tablecloths, plates and napkins with spider web or cat patterns.  If you want to skip the lengthy preparation, order out or choose catering from a pizza place, such as The Valley...

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Microbreweries: How To Find And Taste Craft Beers

Posted by on Dec 4, 2014 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Crafting micro-brew beer has become wildly popular in the United States. Consumers can find a microbrewery in most major cities. Some of these microbreweries are located inside gastro-pubs and restaurants while others are stand-alone establishments with bars for beer connoisseurs. If you are interested in trying every possible craft beer that exists, here is how you can discover these microbreweries when you travel. Visit a Local Grocery Store or Alcoholic Beverage Mart Some microbreweries produce enough of their craft beer to sell in the local markets. If you want to find out about the local brews and where they are made, you can ask the store clerks and owners about local products. Knowledgeable locals will not only point you in the direction of the beers sold in the stores, but also to the actual breweries themselves, which often offer tours or sampling events. Ask a Concierge If you are staying in a particularly nice hotel, the hotel may serve micro brew beer in their bars. A hotel concierge would also know where you could go to taste craft beer, especially during certain ethnic and cultural celebrations, e.g., Oktoberfest. Rather than going out, the concierge could conceivably acquire some craft beers for you, and you could stay in watching pay-per-view while you sample the city’s finest. Ask Your Waiter/ Waitress In a restaurant or gastro-pub, ask your waitstaff if they serve locally made beer. Often, the restaurants that do serve micro-brews will have them either on tap or fresh in the bottle in the coolers. Your waitstaff may even make recommendations about which ones to try, in the event you cannot make up your mind. Consult with a Travel Resource Agent A travel resource agent can supply you with a list of microbreweries in the vicinity of your destination. One state in particular, Wisconsin, has dozens of micro-breweries you can visit, as well as wineries if you visit the Door County Peninsula. You can even tour the big-name, national and international breweries in that state if you are curious enough to learn more about the history of German beer crafting. Finally, Visit Local Festivals and Sporting Events Festivals and sporting events are two resources micro-breweries utilize to get their craft beer out into the public eye. If you attend any of these events, you may very well come across some craft beer that has not reached farther than the local markets, making it a rare and regional treat. If you keep all these sources in mind while you travel, you are certain to experience many of the new beers that are emerging before they ever hit store shelves. For more information about craft beer, contact Hoboken Beer & Soda Outlet or a similar...

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