April 10, 2012

Become a NSBG Member

 We Want You!

Become a NSBG Member Today!

Misconception #1: "I'm not a "craft style" bartender, I can't join!" This is the biggest misconception about NSBG. We are ALL bartenders, what our group provides is a better knowledge and understanding about our industry, the beverage world and how to be the best hospitality ambassador you can be.

Misconception #2: "That group is a bunch of pretentious cocktail nerds" No, No, NO! The NSBG is about community both the one in which we live and the one in which we work. NSBG is a community of hospitality enthusiasts that provide a high level of commitment back into our community. NSBG also gives you the tools and knowledge base to take with wherever you go, be it behind a bar or out into the community you serve.

Misconception #3: "I'm not a service industry professional, I can't join anyways" Not true! We currently have members that have never been behind a bar in their life! We have brand ambassadors, bloggers, and just overall beverage enthusiasts that are a part of NSBG.
Does our organization focus on cocktails, brews, wine and spirits? Yes of course, but we also focus on giving back to our community with fund raisers, business partnerships, hosted dinners and guest appearances throughout our community.

Ok, what benefits comes with being an NSBG member? A growing rewards program (discounts and special offers with multiple local businesses); discounted ticket prices on all NSBG and affiliates’ events/dinners/functions; access to beverage tastings from distillers all over the world; first-in-line access to rare, hard to get seasonal spirits, brews and wines directly from the distributor and in some instances direct from the distiller; most importantly you have a hand in deciding the direction of not only the NSBG but the beverage industry in our community as a whole!

How to become a member: Go to our website, www.nsbarguild.org, and click on the 'Join/Subscribe' tab and follow the directions given. Or, come to one of our events, we always have a membership table set up and ready to take new memberships. Also our member meetings (1st and 3rd Monday of each month) we are always available to accept new memberships.

Contact for Questions: email info@nsbarguild.org with any questions you may have about becoming a member. Thank you for your support and consideration about joining the NSBG family!

Jesse Held Founding Member and President
North Star Bartenders Guild

April 5, 2012

Thai Tofu

Photo by SunnyByrd
When I gave up meat during Lent this year I decided that I wanted to explore the world of tofu more so I started  Tofu Tuesday. One of the many things I have learned from my fellow food bloggers is that is NOT scary and it taste great.  

I found this recipe on Allrecipes.com. I cannot have peanut butter, I substituted almond butter.  Also, I added 1 tablespoon of  garlic chili sauce to give it a little heat.  This meal said it makes 4, but the servings would be small; it was the perfect dish to have 2 meals. 
1 (14 ounce) package firm tofu, cut into 3/4 inch cubes
1/3 cup chopped green onion
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger root 
1/4 cup chunky peanut butter (I used almond butter)
3 tablespoons flaked coconut
1 tablespoon of garlic chili sauce (optional)
sesame seeds

1. Heat olive oil and sesame oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium, and cook green onions for one minute. Add tofu, and continue cooking 4 minutes more, sprinkling with soy sauce halfway through. Gently stir in the peanut butter and ginger, being careful not to break the tofu, until well incorporated.
2. Remove from heat, and toss in coconut. Transfer to a serving dish, and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED © 2012 Allrecipes.com  Printed from Allrecipes.com 4/5/2012

April 3, 2012

I am officially 1/4 of the way into my 12 in '12 list; Time for an update.

#3. Have a drink made by all the bartenders in book Northstar Cocktail by Johnny Michaels.  I suppose I should list them so I can cross them off as I have one of there stellar cocktails. So for tracking purposes here is the list (I will highlight who had made me drinks):
Johnny Michaels     Chad Larson
Megan Arts Tim Leary
Jourdan Gomez       Garrett Nitzchke
Birk Grudem Dan Oskey
Pip Hanson Michael Rasmussen
Adam Harness Richy Rivera
Jesse Held Christat Robinson
Rob Jones Jeff Rogers
Shawn Jones Sonya Runkle
Gina Kent Peder Schweigert
Nicholas Kosevich Thea Sheffert
Ira Koplowitz Geoffrey Trelstad
Collin Lace Andy Truskolski
Jeff Rogers
As a member of the North Star Bartenders Guild I am privileged to spend time with some of the bartenders who contributed to Northstar Cocktail. The Guild has hosted two events in the past three months that have allowed me to enjoy cocktails by some of the bartenders above.  I could technically cross off, Jourdan, Adam, Jesse, Rob, Shawn, Nicolas, Ira, Chad, Richy, and Jeff.   I think, however, I will still visit them at their bars. It is nice to chat with them and then have them sign the book. (The things I will do to cross items off my list) 

Adam Harness
I have enjoyed drinks from behind their own bar with Jeff Rogers (The Lowery) and Adam Harness (Cafe Maude). The drink Jeff created was not on the menu and is called "Moon Bear." Adam used me as a guinea pig for a drink that is coming out on his new drink menu.  

#4. Run 12k - I bought myself a pair of running shoes and have been walking and doing a little running on my treadmill.  With the weather turning nicer I am excited to get outside and hit the payment. 

#6.Lose 30 lbs. (and not find it again).  When I started the year I was 208 lbs.  As the of post of this blog I am at 195 lbs.  My goal is set at 2.5 lbs per month.  I am happy to say I am exceeding that goal. I think the combination of using my treadmill, giving up meat for Lent, and be conscious what I eat has all contributed to being 13 lbs down.

#8. Try 12 new restaurantsI have had no trouble finding new places to try.  I will be adding posts and photos from my experiences.
Chicken & Waffles from Hash House
  1. The Lowry (Minneapolis, MN) -My Visit -The Lowry
  2. Swirl (Afton, MN)
  3. Hash House A Go Go (Las Vegas, NV)
  4. Eat Street Social (Minneapolis, MN)
  5. The Town Hall Tap (Minneapolis, MN)
  6. Create Catering (Minneapolis, MN)
  7. Porter & Frye (Minneapolis, MN)
  8. Cafe Maude (Minneapolis, MN)
#10.  New Job - It's not for lack of trying, but I have been sending out resumes and cover letters.  I try not to let not getting a response back frustrate me; unfortunately it seems to be the norm with companies to not respond.  I did however start doing some contract work  for Bob Curtis at the Bob Curtis Agency in Lakeville, MN. 

#11.  Meet up with 12 people I know only via Facebook, but have never met.  Wow!  I am surprised I have only crossed one name off on this list.  Yet there has been  communication via Facebook in the last 3 months.  I should do a quick recap of the names: 
  1. Nate Anderson     
  2. Chris Hawkey
  3. Adam Vickerman 
  4. Leslie Davis
  5. Tim Kanaley
  6. Dave Sniadak
  7. Nick Koppy 
  8. Scott Pampuch     
  9. Jeff Roemhildt 
  10. Rick Reichert     
  11. Danny Klecko
I met Tim Kanley, he is a friend of my friend Mitch Nelson. We have chatted a few times on Facebook Chat but never have met.  I figure if he knows Mitch he can't be all bad.  We decided to meet for dinner and a cocktail at Porter & Frye in Minneapolis.  I found out during my conversation at dinner I think I know Tim better than Mitch does.  The evening was fabulous and the conversation flowed like we had been friends for years and dinner was a regular occurrence. 

#12. This will be the Year of the Kitchen!  I am going to say this now...There have not been enough people in my kitchen!  I have been fortunate to have friends stop by. My guests have included an evening of gross cheese (Ross believes I was trying to kill him...hmm...hasn't he heard of murder mystery dinners?), wonderful wine & cocktails,  great conversation and an impromptu dinner with Ross Sveback & Mitch Hildman.
You know it was a good time when the kitchen a mess!

Adam Warner came by for another impromptu dinner that got cut short due to other schedule conflicts.  Even though we had about an hour we enjoyed a healthy meal of Sauteed Vegetables with Soba Noodles and a touch of Parmesan cheese. 

What is next? Get through #11 Meet up with 12 people I know only via Facebook, but have never met.  I am already working on a list of more people to meet that I know only via Facebook.  As with any of my lists like this there may be things added....ok, that is pretty much a guarantee.  I will continue to update my blog with how I am doing with the 12 in '12 list. Sign up to follow my blog and you can be kept up to date on how it is going.