by Matt on April 9, 2007


Or "how I learned to enjoy beer through spices and genetic counseling"

Excuse me, but I may have jumped the gun a bit on this beer recipe.
Cinco de Mayo isn’t until next month, but with all the Mexican recipe
testing that has been happening at our house I just assumed it would be
ok to pre-drag out the festivities a bit…even if Cinco de Mayo isn’t
as big of a celebration as September 16th. But then again, do I really
need an excuse to get my party on? I don’t think so. Besides, I really just want
to get something off my chest.

I’ve always been a fan of a good bloody mary. Heck, I’ll even enjoy a
bad one. I’m easy that way. The combination of spirit, heat, ice, and a
kick has always done me right. Add to the concoction some edibles in
the form of olives and celery and yes, I’ll skip lunch and have
another, thank you for asking! However, in a newly revealed fact that
is sure to cause damnation among my family members (all of which read
this lil ole site), I must publicly "come out" about something.

No, it’s not that, silly. Ain’t a closet big enough to contain me.

I’m talking about cerveza.

That’s correct!

I don’t drink beer!

Now before my family disowns me (I have a brewmeister for a
brother-in-law, even)
I want you to know that I have tried to enjoy
beer. Believe me, I have tried! And if you think it’s strange for a
chubby latino who savors family get-togethers and mariachi music to not
drink beer then I must tell you that you couldn’t possibly be more
perplexed than I. Convinced it’s a genetic defect, I know that
somewhere in the universe there is a strand of DNA with an extra beer
nobbly bit on it that was supposed to be mine, damnit, and had my
parents let me drink beer as a toddler than we could have identified
this abnormality much earlier and I could be enjoying a relatively
normal life instead of the wine-and-rum swigging (not together!) ways I
have learned to embrace as a pathetic substitute.

Thanks Mom, thanks Dad. Really, thanks.

But maybe I should go easier on Ben and Helen.

Two years ago next month we traveled to Austin for our wedding. Seeing
as it was our "committment ceremony" weekend we splurged and stayed at
the San José on South Congress. If you’ve been to Austin I have no
doubt you’ve either been there, seen it, driven by, or heard that it’s
quite simply the coolest place to stay. And it is. My description could
never do it justice–it’s just a groovy, magical place. And when I
wasn’t freaking out over the fact that I was about to get married or
that the photographer was running late I learned to calm my nerves by
heading to the bar and ordering a beer-based drink called a Michelada
on the advice of a friend. I was sure it was going to be disgusting and

Beer with what? Tabasco beer what? Salt? Ice cubes? Shut the hell up.

And then I remembered my friend mary– miss bloody mary. It all made sense.

As if the clouds parted and a boozy angel brought down a frosty mug, I
took my first sip of the cerveza preparada expecting to be horrified. I
had the opposite reaction; it was cold, flavorful, salty, delicious and
filling. So I had another one. And then another one. And before long I
wasn’t so nervous about exchanging vows in front of my entire friends
and family. And in case you’re wondering, no, I wasn’t drunk the day of
the ceremony…that happened 13 minutes after it was over, silly.

While I may sip a beer now and then, it doesn’t take much to get me to
whip up a batch of Micheladas. You probably have all the elements in
your kitchen: salt, pepper, a lemon or lime, some ice cubes, soy sauce
or maggi seasoning and a dash of hot sauce. Just squeeze one lime into
a glass, add a dash of black pepper, a few shakes of tabasco and soy
sauce, ice cubes and top with beer. Because it’s such a regional
recipe, I’ve seen variations that involve tomato juice, v8 or even
Clamato. Celery sticks even. It’s hard to mess it up, really.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some family damage control to tend to.
And if you’re in Austin, make sure to stop by and say hello to my
friend Bobby at the San José Hotel and ask him about his monkey bread.
I’m craving it right now.

Along with a michelada.



Dear Mommy and Daddy, you know I am only being silly. I don’t blame you for a thing. If anything, I might fault you for making me so incredibly handsome and athletic. Hahahahahaha I crack myself up sometimes!