Monday, November 29, 2010

Schlafly No. 15 Ale

Today is the second anniversary of this blog. There will be no balloons and no cake, though. I don't really see any accomplishment worth celebrating based on an annual occurrence. After all, even if I posted weekly or monthly this day would have come. The accomplishment I am proud of is the amount of [quality] content and effort I've put into this site. There aren't many blogs that have almost 800 reviews. I hope I've also kept you entertained along the way! Enough on that topic.

Today I'm going to give you a few observations and "pro" tips for visiting Disney World. Some may apply to other parks as well. And I know none of this is really new, so let me try to keep it spicy! If you're not interested, there is a beer review below all of these. Oh, and feel free to share your own tips if you'd like.

1. You should try to be a Florida resident. We get tickets for almost 50% less that everyone else, but Disney will check to make sure, ID's and biometrics and all, so don't try to cheat. Also, we don't need to take airplanes, saving a bundle. Tickets for my family of four on a simple 3-day/3-park pass cost $550, which is still pricey. If I had to pay more than that, I'd feel ripped off.

2. If you are driving, watch out for Roscoe P. Coltrane in every Florida county north of Palm Beach County. Probably there is an "uncivilized" redneck zone north and west of Orlando too, but I'm not sure where those officially start and stop. I saw a guy last Wednesday pass an unmarked car going 80 in a 70 and he got lit up. And I was following him at the same rate. Whew, close one!

3. The Fake Mary Poppins at Disney is much nicer than the Real Mary Poppins. A lot younger too!

4. Make sure you take those plastic rain slickers with you. Not only will they protect you from the rain, but Disney has some cool rides that will drench you and ruin the rest of your day if you don't have protection (Splash Mountain/Giant Innertube Rapids Ride). Disney would be happy to sell you one for around $8 so again, buy ahead of time for a few pennies and a few minutes of planning. Don't give in to the man!

5. Use the FastPass system. And plan how you will use it. Once you get a FastPass, you will need to wait for a while to get another. I'd recommend waiting until that time, printed there on the ticket, then getting another one, maximizing your time. Remember, some rides are super popular and it may be hours until you come back with the original pass.

6. Use the singles line. This is an extremely overlooked awesome place. My son and I rode the Expedition Everest roller coaster 9 times with an average wait of 10 minutes per time. Many of you know this line and how great it works in a ski lift line. Personally, that is actually better because the "ride" there is a lot longer and you don't need to be with your asshole brother fighting. But for amusement rides, it's almost as sweet.

7. Don't arrive early for the shows. Well, OK, 5-10 minutes, not the recommended 30-45 minutes. Those suggested times are for Disney's benefit, not yours. Unless you are the Nemo or Lion King nerd geek freak of this lifetime and need to be in the front row, just show up a few minutes early.

8. If you have a car and a choice of using it or taking the hotel transportation, choose the car. I guess there may be some exceptions if you are at one of the super close Disney hotels, but I stayed at a Disney hotel and the $14 parking rate was the best money I spent all day. Come and go as I please, no waiting around for a bus, no smelly foreigners next to me, total convenience. Oh, and very importantly, take a picture of the row and lot you are in, or write it down. Minnie, Pluto, Jasmin, Unicorn... After a full day around all these same characters, you will forget!

9. Take your lunch! Or at least your drinks. Disney allows soft coolers and cans of soda and water bottles and juices are A-OK with security. A backpack might be a better option if you don't have kids and a stroller to hang the cooler on. Juice boxes, by the way, are also OK in Magic Kingdom and probably some of the others, but in Animal Kingdom, they are worried about the straws with their animals, so they are not permitted. I learned this the hard way last year in Sea World (not a Disney Park) when the dude made me throw away 10 straws and we needed to drink without them.

10. I might even suggest bringing a stroller to people without kids. It's great for pushing your bags and cooler around. If you do have kids, don't think "I'll just rent one" because you will get taken for around $13 per day depending on how many days you commit to. And the Disney strollers are industrial and suck Mickey's balls. They are not too convenient or comfortable; rather they are made for daily abuse. When you listen to me and bring your own, be sure to decorate it in some way to make it stand out from all the others. It will get moved around the stroller parking by the staff, and finding it will be worse than any day at the airport baggage claim!

Hey Look! I just made a Top Ten List! Print this list NOW! Seriously, it's that important!

Tonight I'm drinking Schlafly No. 15 Ale brewed by The Saint Louis Brewery in Saint Louis, Missouri. Mine was "Bottled With Love" on 07 08 2010. This will be my first beer from this brewery, sent to me by Marathon Marie a few weeks ago.

Wow, the color is much darker than I was expecting. Hoppy, citrus lemon aroma plus some sweeter fruit all rolled into one, very inviting. Lemon and hoppy flavors mirror the aroma with a pleasant and refreshing citrus start. There are some sweet orange and peach flavors as well, balancing the beer perfectly. Lightly spicy with a good wheat texture and background flavor. What I really am enjoying, though, is this tart and slightly sour flavor that each sip leaves behind, very appealing from both a flavor and tingly taste bud sensation. Good carbonation. Simple and different, I really liked this beer! Check it out for sure!

Update 11/30/2010: I already made a mention of this in the comments, but since several people have told me, I thought it was worth it to add this information here. Schlafly No. 15 has been discontinued so that the brewery could start a new series. Here is a good article detailing their plans. Anyway, if you love this beer or want to try it before it's gone, I'd suggest getting to the store now!

Toy Story 3

Mini Mickey: The Pocket-Sized Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World (Unofficial Guides)

The Dukes of Hazzard - The Complete TV Series (Seasons 1-7)


marie said...

hey, great! That means I'm 3 for 3. I've actually never had that one so I wasn't sure what it'd taste like.

Beer Drinker Rob said...

Yeah, this was a good beer. Another winner.

Funny thing though is that someone told me last night that this beer has been discontinued. Oh well, it's not like I was going to St. Louis or Indiana any time soon!