Summerfest vs. the State Fair: A Bartender’s View

As resident beer expert and Brew City scribe, Dan Murphy knows a thing or two about suds. He acquired some of that knowledge from on-the-job training as a Summerfest bartender for 13 years (at the Miller Lite Oasis), and as a State Fair bartender for 16 years (serving the Miller Lite Sports Bar and Grill crowd). We asked him to compare the two experiences, and the results are, shall we say, sobering.

Tour The Top Shops

Stubby’s Gastrogrub & Beer Bar: Another meeting of beer and pedals. Photo by Chris Kessler. Brocach If you prefer your good craic to be al fresco, grab a Guinness and a table on the large rooftop deck at Brocach (1850 N. Water St.). The patio isn’t reserved just for drinking and dining. Benches and wooden chaise lounges are the ideal spots for Monday Movie Night during the summer.    Café Benelux Outdoor seating is as abundant as Belgian beer at Café Benelux (346 N. Broadway). Sidewalk spots on the bustling corner of Broadway and St. Paul Avenue are nice, but…

The View Finder

Bradford Beach: Sun, sand and a cold one? It’s like a tasteful, three-month long spring break. Photo: Leslie Kirchhoff. Bradford Beach Grab a margarita and a bar stool at a tiki bar on Bradford Beach (North Lincoln Memorial Drive) and settle in for serious scenery. The expanse of fine sand, the enormity of Lake Michigan, the athletic beach bodies of volleyball players, the occasional tanned beer gut jutting unapologetically over a frighteningly small Speedo – when it comes to views, Bradford doesn’t discriminate. It’s a people-watching paradise with great drinks and plenty of action. Sit and stay a while. Harbor…

The Indispensable Summer Drinking Guide

Photo by Chris Kessler It was not easy to compile this definitive guide in the midst of 2014’s late, frigid spring. Our mouths watered with anticipation as we wrote about the best outdoor patios, rooftops and summer drinks, and our minds were transported as we waxed nostalgic about the city’s singular outdoor drinking opportunities.  But, as always, we endured. And now that summer is upon us, we don’t have to wait any longer to palm a perspiring pint, or hear the holy clink of ice-filled libations on a sweltering summer day. Most importantly, neither do you.  The View Finder Old…

Quidditch anyone?

You might not know these sports, but plenty of locals do, like cricket’s Rizwan Arshad (left), bike polo’s Jake Newborn (center) and hurling’s Dave Olson. Photo by Adam Ryan Morris The group of two dozen men were playing a game of… something. This was a few summers back, not long after a mysterious construction project in Tippecanoe Park at Bay View’s southern edge. In the midst of a grassy landscape, the new addition seemed strangely, almost dangerously, out of place. It was a long, narrow concrete slab covered with green artificial turf.  But now, these men and their unfamiliar game had…

Only the Strong Survive

Photo by Adam Ryan Morris  Harder. Better. Faster. Stronger. Has this become the new American fitness credo? Throughout the area, gyms and clubs of all stripes are offering results-based, high-intensity programs that cater to power lifters and novices alike. The good news is that with so many options, there is a regimen out there for every lifestyle.  But why the push to … push?  “People want to feel like they are getting their money’s worth if they are going to pay someone to lead them in a workout,” says trainer Tony Langtimm, who runs ASCENT Gym, an accelerated program that…