I had the opportunity to chat with Louisville native Christie Leigh, author of Gridiron Belles: A Guide to Saturdays in Dixie. Gridiron Belles (http://www.gridironbelles.com/) is the guide to the rules of football, tailgates, and etiquette in the South that Christie Leigh researched by visiting all SEC schools and stadiums to learn their traditions, tailgating, fashion and rituals. The book covers such crucial information like the basics of the game, major rivalries, what to wear, and how to host a tailgate. Bringing women and men together around the unofficial Saturday religion of the south is her driving passion! And since Christie has literally been doing tailgate research for the last three+ years, she’s got some great tailgating tips for us!
Here are Christie’s TOP 5 Tips for Hosting a Top Notch Tailgate:
1) Seating: People walk around all day before a football game and even some of them stand throughout the entire game. Offer a tailgate chair or cooler to anyone that stops by your tailgate.
2) Food & Drinks: Always have plenty of snacks for those coming for a meal or those just passing through. Be sure to have easy-to-eat proteins and sweets! Keep a secret stash of bottled water and be sure to have options for those who like to imbibe and those who like a clear head.
3) Decor: There is no need to cover your tailgate in NCAA licensed products. Get creative with your team's colors in plates, napkins, tents and flags without overdoing the logos.
4) Guests: It's football, the more the merrier! Be sure to tell your guests ahead of time that you're planning a tailgate and be sure to be specific on where you'll be set up.
5) Attitude: Tailgates aren't perfect, weather isn't always sunny, and your team won’t always win. If you bring nothing else to your tailgate, bring a good attitude and be happy that you're with thousands of your closest friends focused on the gridiron!
These are really great tips and you should check out the book yourself from this lovely lady, particularly if you want to learn more about football and tailgating. The first edition sold out last year and Christie has been busy working on a second edition ever since, and she’s got a Kickstarter campaign with a goal of raising $25,000 by October 3rd to get the second edition printed. Support this local football belle by checking out her Kickstarter: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/11356679/gridiron-belles-a-guide-to-saturdays-in-dixie-2nd.
Tis the season for pickin! Not only is the fall season opening up for farms in Kentucky and Indiana but there are great eats and family fun wherever you decide to go. The frost will start to hit 6 weekends from now so plan your trip out to pick soon.
If you are on the Kentucky side, check out Gallrein Farm in Shelby County. This farm is adorable with a pyramid of hay stacks to climb, a petting zoo, a corn maze, and horse drawn wagons to take you to the fields to stock up on fall goodies. This Saturday marks their fall opening of pumpkin picking (at 42 cents a pound), gords, as well as apples. If you have a sweet tooth make sure you head over to their new bakery, which is now stocked with homemade fudge, donuts, and caramel apples.
If you are closer to the Indiana side Hubor Farm is in full swing in Starlight! Take a tractor ride to pick red and golden delicious apples, pumpkins (40 cents a pound with a $4 minimum), tomatoes, squash, gords, and green beans. While you are there swing by their restaurant to pick up the most delicious fried biscuits. Whether you dress your biscuits with butter of the top, by cracking it open, or by injecting your biscuit with the goodness, you've got your choice of apple butter, pumpkin butter, apricot butter, peach butter... so make sure you choose wisely.
Gallrein Farm is open 9-6p weekdays and 10-6 on Saturday and Sunday.
Hubor Farm is open 9-7:30 p Monday through Sunday.
Isn’t that the great thing about Louisville? That we live in a city that celebrates everything food, entertainment, and getting together to have a great time. Now that we had that time to reflect, here’s a list of three upcoming events you can’t miss this late summer and early fall:
In full swing: 502 Lunch Week: This celebration of midday breaks started on September 9th and continues until September 20th. The premise? Have a great lunch around town for $10 or $15 per person (restaurant dependent), for a 2-course meal and a drink. There’s no wristbands, passes, or coupons to purchase, just show up and ask for lunch. The following restaurants are participating and serving up great food:
BLU Italian Grille
Champions Sports Bar and Grille
The Corner Café
Down One Bourbon Bar and Lounge
Joe’s OK Bayou
Main Street Café
Maker’s Mark Bourbon House and Lounge
Mark’s Feed Store (5 locations)
Napa River Grill
St. Charles Exchange
Vincenzo’s Italian Restaurant
Coming up: Louisville Craft Beer Week: What’s the difference between Craft Beer and the regular beer you can find on the shelves? Simply put: it’s the people. Craft beer is brewed by people who like to experiment with new flavors, colors, and who “craft” the beer instead of manufacturing it. In the past, these brewers were small and local, but because of their popularity craft beer has grown into a celebration of tastes as vibrant as Louisville’s own restaurant scene. So is it a beer, a craft beer, or a microbrew? As long as it tastes good, I’m into this event. LouisvilleBeer.com is celebrating their 4th Annual Louisville Craft Beer Week kicking off September 13th to September 21st with celebrations and specials at tons of local beer/restaurant establishments. Here’s the complete line up. Best part? No one drinking a Bud Light will judge you for being a complete beer snob.
Mark your calendar: Butchertown Porktoberfest. I’m proud to announce the 1st annual bbq and pork culinary throw down featuring the cities best pork, music by Hog Operation and John Barry, and brew from Apocalypse Brewery. The premise? From 5p-10p on Friday October 11th at 1205 East Washington Street, 15 Louisville restaurants with compete to win one of five cash prizes for best overall pork, people’s choice, best vegetarian (?!), most creative, and best dessert. All proceeds benefit the Butchertown Neighborhood Association.
Professional football is back! I’m a gal who loves football, wings, and beer. I’ve got two fantasy football leagues, a lawn ornament of a QB with a mechanical arm throwing a ball inside my apartment (no lawn), and a list for you today of all the best restaurants and bars for you football lovers out there. Or heck, maybe you are just in it for the beer and wings:
Below is a list of bars and restaurants that all have the DIRECTV Sunday Ticket, but I’ve got a few favorites I’d like to highlight:
1. Monkey Wrench: Why? The weather outside this weekend calls for partly sunny and 88 degrees. Perfect for watching football on Monkey Wrench’s second level bar deck during the last days of summer. Monkey Wrench has an inexpensive menu ranging from $7-$10 that includes football favorites like big wings, tacos, burgers, pork as well as vegetarian options. During your favorite NFL game you can suck down tall boys of PBR for $3 a piece.
2. The Backdoor Louisville:When you’re going to a bar or restaurant for a three and a half hour game, it’s important you are mindful of your tab. The Backdoor not only has great food and 12 tvs, but the drink specials are killer too. On game days they are serving up $6.75 pitchers, $3.50 Bloody Marys, 50 cent wings, and $1.75 bottle bears.
3. JR’s Pub: This is a New Albany favorite of mine because when you combine good food, good drink specials, and free shuffleboard/foosball it makes you want to stay for hours and hours. I particularly keep coming back for their Prime Rib sandwich, which is smoked first then put on the grill. Just be warned of the Firehouse Wings- holy smokes are they hot. I mean really hot and I love spicy food. During NFL games JR’s is serving up $8.50 buckets of domestic beer.
Where else can you watch NFL Football in Louisville? Check out these Louisville/Indiana restaurants and bars.