Jan 312012
 

The Memphis Daily News has reported that the Great American Steamboat Company will host a job fair here the third week of February. The steamboat company moved into its new headquarters at One Commerce Square last fall, and their maiden voyage from the Beale Street Landing will happen in April. To prepare for the new cruises, the company is looking to fill 300 positions, including housekeeping, culinary, technical crew, and front and back of the house. They plan to have positions filled by March.

For someone with a sense of adventure, this could be a fun place to work. True, you’d be away for days or weeks at a time, but you’d return flush with cash (since it’s not like you’d be spending a lot on the boat) and time off to spend it before the next voyage. Also, you’d have lots of interesting river travel stories to share with your friends. Furthermore, you’d get to visit all the river port cities on the Mississippi and its tributaries – St.Louis, St. Paul, Vicksburg, Louisville, New Orleans, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Chattanooga – on the company dime. Given the travel, probably not ideal positions for someone with a family; but, for a single guy or gal wanting to explore the South and Midwest, this could be an ideal gig.

Read more about the career fair on the Daily News website.

Jan 302012
 

I haven’t written much about it, but Cochon555 is coming to One Commerce Square this Saturday. Five chefs compete, each cooking a whole hog. One of the main purposes of the event is to raise awareness of heritage pork. Thomas of the Eat Local Memphis blog has a fantastic interview with Brady Lowe, creator of the Cochon555 concept, and some of the local chefs. Read it here.

Karen Waldrup and Ashlee K. Thomas play the Brass Door again tonight at 7. There is no cover charge, but tips are appreciated. You can register to win a guitar signed by the two musicians.

Don’t forget that the Blind Bear has a $4 sausage and cheese plate tonight from 6 to 9. I haven’t had that plate myself yet, but I’ve seen others order it and even at its regular price of $6 it’s a heck of a value. They’ll have half price bottles of wine from 6 to 9 too.

That’s all the news for now. Time for Pint Nite, then poker. If I get eliminated from poker before 9, I’ll check out that sausage and cheese plate for myself.

Jan 302012
 

The big event happening Downtown this week is the 28th annual International Blues Challenge. Blues musicians from around the world come to Beale Street to compete for awards in various categories, as well as to show record labels what they can do. Last year there were 110 bands and 83 solo/duo acts in the Challenge, and just as many are expected this year.

What does this mean for you? The chance to hear some of the best blues in the world for one low price. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday nights they do wristband night on Beale. You pay for a wristband and have access to over a dozen clubs on and near Beale Street. Wednesday and Thursday are the quarterfinals, and Friday is the semifinals. The finals will be at the Orpheum on Saturday.

More info about the festival here. Which night is the best to go? Any night is good, but Wednesday and Thursday are especially good for locals. Many of the people flying in from out of town will not have arrived yet, and you’ll be able to get up close and personal with the bands.

In the meantime, if you need something to do tonight and tomorrow while you’re waiting on IBC to start, why not hit the FedExForum for a Grizzlies game? We host the Spurs tonight and the Nuggets tomorrow. Both games are at 7 PM.

Thanks to those who have sent me Super Bowl information. I’ve started compiling a list and will post later this week. I am still completely undecided where I will watch the game.

Plans for tonight: Pint Nite at the Saucer at 6, poker at the Goose at 7:30. In other words, the Monday usual. I’ll probably post again after work.

Jan 292012
 

The Super Bowl is one week away, so it’s time for me to start collecting info about bars throwing Super Bowl parties for a future post. If you run a bar Downtown, shoot me an email at paul@paulryburn.com (or hit me up on Facebook if that works better for you) and let me know what you’ve got going on. I’ll compile a list and post it mid to late week. (Bardog, Saucer and Mulligan’s: I have your info already.)

I do this every year, but this time around I’m going to be paying close attention to my own list. For the first time since 2005 I don’t have a house party to go to for the Super Bowl… my friend who usually throws one in his condo won’t be in town. As a result, I’m kind of at a loss for where to go. I’ll ask around where has been good in recent years.

Fun day yesterday. I did a little day drinking with my friend John D at Bardog, drinking PBR at Panda Manda’s bar. I ordered the Soup of the Day, which was a roasted poblano pepper and chicken soup. It was delicious. I’ve never been a soup person, but the specials at Bardog and Brass Door are starting to make me re-think it. In the evening, I started at the Saucer, then went on to Blind Bear where it was Whitney’s birthday. The Bear was super packed but I had a fun time catching up with friends, neighbors, poker buddies and BBQ teammates.

A couple of times during the day yesterday I heard good things about this new Double J’s Saloon that is to open soon on South Main. I don’t want to give away any details that they’re not ready to release to the public, but I’ll say I have reason to believe that the food there will be good beyond all expectations. I have also heard that they expect to have a lot of synergy with Max’s Sports Bar around the corner. They serve liquor, whereas Max’s is beer only. Max, I’ve been told, isn’t threatened by his new neighbor at all, and understands that having two bars so close by will make South Main more of a destination, benefiting both bars in the long run.

So in a month or two I’ll have a neighborhood bar, a beer garden, a lounge, an Irish pub, a speakeasy, a sports bar, and a saloon, all of which I can walk or trolley to within minutes. 2012 is a great time to be a Downtowner.

Time to hit Publish and get the day started. I will be at the Majestic for mimosas at 11, and the Saucer for beer at 12. Possible stops later in the day: Hung Over Like a Bear brunch at Blind Bear (3 PM); Memphis Jazz Orchestra at Alfred’s (6 PM); Jeffrey and the Pacemakers at Huey’s (8:30 PM).

Jan 282012
 

So, in last night’s Z-boING photo I had red, white and blue beads. I said I’d come back and post why.

It was because yesterday, my friend Patrick Reilly, who co-owns the Majestic Grille with his wife Deni, took his oath as a United States citizen. Patrick grew up in Ireland. He became a citizen yesterday morning, and then Deni threw him a surprise party in the upstairs of the Majestic in the early evening. I didn’t take any photos – the space was packed, not surprising since Patrick has a lot of friends – but it was a good time. There was a buffet of all-American food, all-American drinks at the bar, and even red, white and blue M&Ms.

There was a photo of Patrick receiving his citizenship papers, and space for guests to write around the edges. I wrote, “AMERICA! Home of PBR and Patrick Reilly.” In my book there are few higher compliments than to be mentioned alongside PBR.

Congratulations to one of our country’s newest citizens!

Z-boING

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Jan 282012
 

I had to improvise. I didn’t have a headband but I had red, white and blue beads (more on why in a future post). McCleskey convinced me that a lime could serve as a mouth guard. So here you go.

If you don’t know what Z-boING is, go here.

Jan 272012
 

Tonight is South Main Trolley Tour, held the last Friday of every month. South Main shops and businesses stay open on Trolley Tour night for shoppers. The Downtown Memphis Commission posted a list of businesses that will be open tonight, and it is HUGE. Check out the list here. Some of the shops offer discounts, live entertainment, and/or complimentary appetizers and beverages. Free food? Wonder if the Nuh-Uh Girl will show up.

Z-boING has made national headlines. ESPN has an article about Z-boING, in which you take Zach Randolph’s defensive stance, preferably wearing a headband, and using creativity in choosing a mouthpiece. Maybe I’ll take a pic of myself Z-boING tonight and blog it this weekend. I don’t have a yellow Grizzlies headband, but I have a PBR headband I’m always looking for excuses to wear.

Downtown development is creeping farther and father toward the neighborhood’s southern boundary. The Memphis Business Journal reports that Crescent Bluff apartments will soon be developed at the northeast corner of Florida and Virginia. Virginia Avenue is only one block north of Crump. The building will hold 72 units.

Last night I made my usual stop at the Saucer, and despite a HORRENDOUS Fire Sale (Abita Turbo Dog), I decided to stick around and watch the Grizzlies. Funny thing – the bar was relatively quiet until they pulled down both big screens and turned on the sound. The place quickly got packed. Show local games with sound on, attract a crowd… it’s not rocket surgery. “Paul, go outside and look at the TV in the Garden,” one of the servers told me. So I did.

I immediately could tell that the image on the big screen was much sharper and brighter than it had been before. “We got a new projection TV,” they told me. Gotta hand it to the Saucer – they may claim to be a beer bar, not a sports bar, but they’ve really raised the bar for showing games lately.

Kooky Canuck has four new Canadian beers by Unibroue. Here is more info on them (click the photo for a larger image):

And while we’re on the subject of Kooky Canuck, here’s a bonus photo of me with Lana, taken last Sunday:

All right, that’s the Friday news. Sorry these posts have been coming after work rather than at lunch, but I just haven’t had enough newsworthy stuff to do lunch posts several times this week.

Time to go get something to eat, then beer after that.

Jan 262012
 

Yeah so no lunchtime post or after work post today. There just wasn’t much news to report. As soon as I went out, my Facebook news feed started blowing up with items to post. Doing this from my iPhone’s WordPress app, so please excuse any spelling mistakes.

Rehab Disco celebrates its second anniversary Saturday night, January 28. Congrats to JJ and Mo and the crew. Will do my best to get in there and offer best wishes.

Blind Bear has announced a plan to make Mondays more fun. From 6-9 they’ll have half price wine, excluding house wines, and $4 sausage and cheese plates.

Congrats to Flight. They were named one of OpenTable’s top 100 restaurants.

Speaking of OpenTable, you can now use the site to book reservations to Rizzo’s Diner.

Typing this at the Saucer. A bum just came in and asked for two fives for a ten. I guess the crack houses down on Abel Street are charging $5 a rock these days.

All right, time to hit publish and drink some beer toward my 6th plate. Thinking about a progressive party for number 6. If I can win poker once more each at Silly Goose and Blind Bear, I’ll have a $150 tab at Saucer, almost $100 at Goose, and $100 at Bear. That could be a fun little night. In the meantime, go Grizz! We’ve got the Clippers on the road at 9:30.

Jan 252012
 

There’s a vote going on for best NBA Twitter account, and the Grizzlies’ very own Tony Allen is in the running. Vote for TA here.

Kerry from the I Love Memphis Blog put up a post yesterday that is absolutely a must-bookmark: The Ultimate Guide to Drinking Cheap in Memphis. Happy hours, pint nights, and other events where you can get deals on beer, wine, and booze.

If your sweetheart is a Redbirds fan, you can buy them the Redbirds Valentine’s Day Pack again this year. Fans can purchase their valentine a $40.00 ticket pack that includes two dugout ticket vouchers, a $20.00 gift card to Pugh’s Flowers, $10.00 in Redbirds Bucks and a single rose. For just $35.00 more fans can have Rockey deliver the package to their valentine on Monday, February 13 or Tuesday, February 14. Rockey only has time to deliver ten packs, so call 901-721-6000 for availability.

The International Blues Challenge is next weekend, and Downtown restaurant Kooky Canuck is getting in on the fun. They will host the first-ever Canadian Polar Bear Blues Showcase Thursday, February 2. The first 150 people will receive gift bags containing CDs from Canadian artists and other Canadian promotional material including a voucher for a complimentary Canadian beverage. More info and artist lineup can be found here.

Home from work, heading out for a beer. Will probably do happy hour at the Saucer, then move on to Blind Bear at some point before the Tiger game lets out.