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March 10, 2012 / stevenmartorana

Beer Review: AVENTINUS

AVENTINUS – G. Schneider & Sohn. Kelheim, Germany

Initial impressions:
Lots of head when poured; goes down quite smooth, an excellent dinner beer.

Quite unlike anything I’ve had to date, the wheat flavor pulls through the palate. Definitely could tast the ‘German influce’ as I clearly imagined myself sipping this brew in a M√ľnchen beer garden. Made the mistake of reading the back label before my first taste. I personally didn’t recognize the notes of chocolate and fruit, namely banana.

I felt that I spent the entire bottle trying to discern a true taste of this beer; it was enjoyable but personally, I could not put my tongue on what made up this ‘perfect balance of fruity spiciness and notes of chocolate.’ Was it a good beer? Certainly I myself, enjoy a bit more ‘punch’ though…
wishing for more of that fruit and chocolate pull-through.

4 on a 1-5 scale


March 10, 2012 / stevenmartorana

DIY Project: Insulate Your Garage Door

Every home owner can agree, any room located directly over the garage, is most likely the coldest room in the house during the winter. Sometimes it also attributes to the hottest in the summer.

So after suffering for three winters, I decided to do something about it. I knew the main culprit was my 2″ steel garage door. First, I considered buying all the insulation and cutting out a template that fit the door. Then I thought, wait.. there has to be a prepackaged option for such an endeavor. An option that could save me time and money. Less than a second later, the interweb had given me the solution:
An Owens Corning Kit via Home Depot


In short, I do recommend this kit for both saving you time and agony. However, I can just about guarantee it will take loner than 1hr (which the packaging boasts). It comes with just about everything you need. In order to save you further time, agony, and ensure it lasts longer I do highly recommend purchasing the additional items:
-White Duct Tape: for taping the edges of the panels together
-Loctite Super Glue (after trying many, many brands over the years, this is IMO the best damn glue for your money): the double sided tape is sure to fail over time and during extreme temperatures
-A second kit IF your garage door is larger than 9 feet

Follow the directions with these tips when appropriate during the process, and you should be basking in the glory of your new warm garage in no time:
-Score the round ‘snap’ that will face the garage door and apply super glue to the plastic for a strong bond to the door (opposed to the duble sided tape provided in the kit). Don’t forget to clean the area on the garage door with alcohol first (it does help the bonding)

-When you have all the fiber glass panels hung, use the white duct tape at the intersection points of the panels to minimize the panels from drooping down when the door is up

So far, I’m please with the results both in the garage itself and in the room. Granted, winter is just about over at this point. If nothing else, it gave me a project to complete…

February 20, 2012 / stevenmartorana

Beer Review: Imperial Choklate Stout

Imperial Choklate Stout – Southern Tier Brewing Company. Lakewood, New York.

Initial impressions:
Pours like a dinner liqueur, with no head and limited carbonation–smells exactly like milk chocolate

Liquid chocolate with a slight bitter (hops) taste. The taste of chocolate lingers on your palette and leaves you wanting more. With the little to no carbonation, this ‘food for the gods’ slides down easy, and with 10.0% alcohol by volume, you could end up feeling nice, quite fast.

You mustn’t be a stout fan to enjoy this delicious delicacy. If you even remotely like chocolate, you’ll easily finish this 1 pint, 6 oz bottle. A must try for the list.

4.5 on a 1-5scale20120220-011812.jpg

February 20, 2012 / stevenmartorana

Beer Review: Milk Stout

Milk Stout – Left Hand Brewing Co. Longmont, Colorado.

Initial Impressions:
Syrupy appearance, yet expected to pour thicker

Smells like a every day stout, with a sprinkle of sweet. Unfortunately, not over-inviting, nor intriguing

A well-balanced taste, that goes down smooth and is extremely easy to drink. However, nothing extraordinary. There is a slight hint of ‘milky’ flavor, but not near what I was expecting. After a few sips (not initially), I did begin to experience a nice hops aftertaste. Although, I was left wanting more robust flavor. Perhaps my expectations were high, but I expected much more of a sweet milky flavor with a thicker feel.

Overall, a nice dinner stout, that I felt could use a bit more oomph. Try it to try it. I personally was not that impressed. Perhaps my expectations were too high? 3.5 on a 1-5 scale.


February 20, 2012 / stevenmartorana

Welcome to the Arm Chair


The armchair is the quintessential element of any man’s home. Think about it, you come home from work, want to clear your mind–and there she is–ready to help you relax (no, not your wife), it’s your comforting, favorite piece of furniture… your one and only armchair.
The armchair is a place to end your work life and begin your personal life.

About Me:
I’m an ordinary guy–a new father in his early thirties with a just few extra minutes on his hands (stressing a FEW minutes), to share my reviews on what helps me relax. At the moment, that includes fine beer. However, as my contributions progress, I may also pepper in other thoughts that are relevant at the moment. I’m no expert, but I hope my reviews serve to save you some time and add some guidance… if nothing else. Enjoy.