Favorite restaurant in Wisconsin, so far–

img_1134 img_1121 img_1138 img_1125BOOM!  Here it is…our favorite restaurant in all of Wisconsin, so far. . .a place on Willy Street in the heart of Madison called “A Pig in a Fur Coat.”  This joint ROCKS!

A Pig in a Fur Coat is owned and run by a dude called Dan and his wife, Bonnie. . .Dan was cited by the James Beard folks as a rising star chef back in 2013, and Bonnie is a seasoned sommelier and solid front-of-house person. . .plus, the rest of the staff are spot on–the host seats us efficiently, our server is a totally chill guy called Christian who guides us smoothly through our entire meal with some laughs along the way. . .mmmm, aaaahh–we love this place!

The menu is packed with delicious-sounding items. . .lots of them are small plates and snack-sized for easy gobbling and enjoyment of the bold flavors that lie in each creation.  We order seven dishes and get busy inhaling them all because everything is so good. . .a rabbit mousse thing–delectable…special meatballs–magical…raviolo with egg yolk and brown butter–I want more NOW…grilled octopus–delicate and totally gobble-worthy…scallops–yummy…bucatini–al dente pasta dish the proceeds from which will be sent to earthquake victims in Italy…plus so much more. . .all of this is washed down with a Sicilian red from the Mt. Etna region–perfect, we love it!

Other dishes that we see other people ingesting include a wagyu rib-eye and a really moist-looking roasted turkey leg. . .damn, we wanna come back to this place again and again and eat everything that Dan is cooking and drink everything that Bonnie is selecting.

So, this place is easily the number one-ranked restaurant in all of Wisconsin for us, so far. . .easygoing setting, great staff, fabulous cooking, and wonderful wine.  Please have a meal here at A Pig in a Fur Coat if you ever find yourself hangin’ in Madtown. . .you will love it–I gar-ron-taaayy!

To see more stupendous images from around our teeny tiny planet simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .do it. . .so much to see and soooo little time.

It’s lovely out there.

Sippin’ in Madtown–

img_1128 img_1142 img_1132 img_1122BAM!  Madison, Wisconsin is growing on us. . .great bloody marys at Mickey’s Tavern on Willy Street. . .wonderful wine selection at a clunkily-named restaurant called ‘A Pig in a Fur Coat’. . .and great views of the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Monona Terrace from our upper-floor room at the Monona Hilton. . .mmmm, aaaahh!!  These things make it easy for us to spend a few days here each and every month. . .the exotic midwest of the U.S. is totally worthy of your attention. . .come on out here some time, you will like it–I gar-ron-taaaaayy!!

I send you mad Madtown and Mound City vibes from the isthmus between Lakes Monona and Mendota here in Madison, Wisconsin. . .feel them. . .they are full of vitality and ease.

To see more magical images from around planet Earth simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .dive on in. . .you deserve a virtual trip right NOW.

It’s lovely out there.

Theater is good for you–

img_1117 img_1111 img_1109img_1110MMM!  Remember, the arts are just about the only thing that separate us humans from the animal kingdom. . .be sure to get a good dose of live theater on a regular basis, or you will become a withered lemming-like cog in the machinery of existence.

A good opportunity to celebrate our separation from the animals is happening right now at St. Ann’s Warehouse here in the DUMBO section of Brooklyn, New York.  The show is Taylor Mac’s 24-Decade History of Popular Music. . .he is performing the show in 3-Decade parts–eight parts in all–and if you love performance and music and overall expression that is un-definable, then you will love this thing.  I caught Part II last night that covers 1806 to 1836, and it was/is strangely alluring. . .I liked it, but I am not quite sure why–still processing all that we saw, heard, smelled, tasted, and felt during the performance. . .yes, there was music, there were fragrances, there were monologues, there was audience participation, there was singing, there was temporary blindness (you have to attend to fully know what I mean by this), and we were fed fruit and fed fruit to others (again, you’ll have to attend to fully embrace this), etc. and so on.  All of this appears to be meant to simply widen whatever blinders we walk around with while making our way through the world, interacting with our fellow humans, and to encourage us to keep learning, keep opening our minds to all kinds of human possibilities, and to simply be more understanding, appreciative, and tolerant of one another.  If you love theater, then you gotta try to see this thing. . .see Taylor Mac doing his thing. . .this will affect you in ways you can’t think of right now. . .jaaaa!

Plus, you get to hang out in DUMBO–Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass–a wonderful little enclave in Brooklyn with a park right on the East River and bars and restaurants all over the place. . .come on out here if you can, have a drink, watch the sun go down behind lower Manhattan with dramatic views of the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges, and check out Taylor Mac or any show happening at St. Ann’s Warehouse. . .you will become a slightly better person by doing so–I gar-ron-taaaay!!

To see more amazing images from around our teeny-tiny planet simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .dive on in. . .so much to see and learn and soooo little time.

It’s lovely out there.


Magic in dem dar hills…

img_1094 img_1086 img_1081 img_1074WOW!  Taliesin is the home Frank Lloyd Wright spent nearly fifty years building and rebuilding in the rolling hills of Wisconsin just outside the town of Spring Green on the banks of the Wisconsin River, and fortunately, we get to enjoy every bit of it right here, right now.

Taliesin means “shining brow” in Welsh, and it is the perfect name for this place as the house does, indeed, shine as it wraps around the brow of a hill in this magnificent section of hills and valleys.  But it doesn’t shine too much. . .no, no, no–Frank would not have that, for the house seems to grow out of and be a natural part of the hills on which it stands. . .majestic, dignified, subdued, gracious, and freakin’ jawdroppingly amazing all at the same time.

The house, the outbuildings, the on-site school, the farm buildings, and even a windmill are all wonderful, but they are crumbling, too.  Taliesin requires lots of ongoing maintenance and refurbishment. . .all of the dollars we pay to visit and tour this site are directed back into the upkeep of this national monument.  So, I strongly recommend that you do your best to come on out here to Spring Green, Wisconsin some time before you die, plunk down some cash, and experience the magic of this house while at the same time doing a good thing by contributing to the upkeep of these important buildings.

Was Frank Lloyd Wright an artist?  A fine craftsman?  A nut job?  A womanizer?  A son-of-a-bitch?  An architectural force of immense power and vision and creativity?  Who cares what we call him–he was probably all of these things and much more, but the good news is that we can celebrate any part of him and his work that we like by simply visiting Taliesin and saying, WOW!

Taliesin awaits you…what are you waiting for?

To see more stupendous images from around planet Earth simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .dive on in. . .lots more magic can be found in here.

It’s lovely out there.

Hard to find…tasty to drink–

img_5006KAPOW!  It’s the Lake Louie Brewery deep in the heart of teeny-tiny Arena, Wisconsin just about ten miles east of Spring Green.  You gotta look for this place. . .really wanna find this place. . .cuz it’s buried at the end of a long driveway on what appears to be someone’s private property.  The website says that there are no regular tours, there are no restrooms, and there is no gift shop. . .just a small brewery making really tasty beer. . .mmmm, aaaahh!  We found you you little sucker. . .you can’t hide from us. . .he-he-he-ho-ho-ho-ha-ha-haaaaaaa!

Anyway, if you ever find yourself wanderin’ around the rolling hills of Wisconsin and you happen to stop in at a tavern somewhere, then ask for a bottle of Lake Louie. . .if they have an icy cold bottle or three for ya, you will be a real satisfied outdoor sleeper, i.e., happy camper.  Enjoy!

I send you humble vibes from Arena, Wisconsin. . .feel them. . .they are full of tons of flavor and will make you hiiiiiiiiigh.

To see more wonderful images from around planet Earth simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .do it. . .so much to see and soooo little time.

It’s lovely out there.

Leinie…we love ya!

img_4994 img_4995 img_5004BAM!  We made it to Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin, the home of the Leinenkugel Brewery…jaaaa!

Leinenkugel was once voted the tastiest smalltown beer in America.  They make many flavors and concoctions, which you know I usually don’t like. . .that’s why I stick with the original brew–a tasty golden ale sort of like a Pilsener but not quite…it’s a LEINENKUGUL, silly!, and it’s delicious.  There is a lodge here, or at least something they are calling a lodge. . .we don’t see any rooms for rent, just lots of trinkets on sale. . .we settle for a six-pack of original ‘Leinies’. . .mmmm, aaaahh!

I am not sure if this beer is available outside of Wisconsin. . .I think it is. . .Google it to learn more, if you so desire.

I send you award-winning vibes from Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin. . .feel them. . .they are tasty and delightful. . .and yes, there are waterfalls here–cheers!

To see more amazing images from around our teeny tiny planet simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .do it. . .you know you want to.

It’s lovely out there.

Sippin’ n gobblin’–

img_1036 img_1059 img_1064 img_1052OH MAN!  We just can’t get enough of the good stuff here in Eau Claire, Wisconsin in the exotic midwest of the U.S. of A….jaaa!

The Firehouse is another great drinking spot with lots of beers on tap, and yes, the place is an old firehouse that has been converted into a bar. . .most wonderful!  There are about 25 beers on tap, but most of them are on the sweet side made with nuts and berries and oatmeal and such. . .so I just go with my old friend New Glarus Spotted Cow, which is always fresh and tasty…mmmm!

After a beverage at The Firehouse we walk a couple blocks to Playmaker’s where I gobble an extremely thick burger that is stuffed with cheese and topped with more cheese and bacon.  I am dubious about their ability to cook this thing a nice medium-rare for me, but they pull it off, and I gobble the whole thing happily.  The meat here in Wisconsin is consistently fresh and delicious–I LOVE IT–and this makes us more and more bold as we tour around eager to sample whatever the house specialty is in each tavern/bar/restaurant we visit.  The burgers are delicious throughout the state. . .I have to be careful that I don’t overdo it and get fat. . .all in moderation. . .keep breathing, buddy, you’ll be just fine. . .all in moderation.

Anyway, we highly recommend drinking at The Firehouse and the big house specialty burger at Playmaker’s in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. . .stop into both of these places, and you will find yourself quite satiated and satisfied.

To see more amazing images from around our teeny tiny planet simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .do it. . .you deserve a magical virtual trip right NOW.

It’s lovely out there.