What Does St. Patrick’s Day Mean To You?

Are you Irish?  I’m not.  But my wife, son and a good percentage of Chicago share this common, ancestral bond.  So how do you celebrate each year?  Follow the rest of the sheep as they dye the river green and consume so much Jameson/Bushmills before 10:00am that you forget your middle name?  Those days are luckily long since behind me and I’ve moved towards traditions worth holding onto…

Our neighbors in Forest Park conduct a civilized parade each year in which we attend from the sidewalks in an orderly fashion.  Pending the weather (especially now with a 16 month old son) we seek shelter on the second floor of (ironically one of the few non-Irish taverns on Madison Street) Skrine Chops and wave to our friends from Opportunity Knocks.  The following weekend we attend the annual music festival at one of the most underrated venues in all of the suburbs (Berwyn), Fitzgerald’s.  But how does one celebrate on the day of St. Patrick’s Day?  Ours is quite low key but fun nonetheless…

Each year we typically consume none other than the classic Irish dry stout, Guinness.  But in 2016 I wanted to give a nod to one of my favorite craft breweries.  Great Lakes Brewing Company’s seasonal six pack Conway’s Irish Ale is yet another seasonal winner from their warehouse.  A rich, malty, slightly bready ale that should appeal to most non-dark beer (God help you) fans.  Match that with one of our favorite, simple yet wonderful films Waking Ned Devine, and you have yourself an excellent evening from the couch.  A tale of a small Irish town and the tomfoolery that ensues from a winning lotto ticket. So pour yourself a proper pint and raise your glass.

Slainte!

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