Denver Burger Battle 2014

August 8, 2014 by ·  

Williams And Graham At Denver Burger Battle

A Booth At Denver Burger Battle

    If ever there was an event tailored made for me, Denver Burger Battle has to be it; 12 local burger joints slugging it out in a competition of hamburgers in the middle of Sculpture Park in Downtown. It was a great time and I have a winner and two runners up that I’ll get to but before I do I want to tell you about my experience at the battle because it was a lot of fun and very well run.

Old Major Pork Burger At Denver Burger Battle

Making Burgers

    Upon entry my badge was scanned and then I was issued a sturdy, red plastic plate with compartments, including a drink holder. Besides the burger booths there were desert stands, bars that poured wine and beer and ice filled tubs with cans of soda and bottles of water. You just walked up and took what you needed.

Cornhole At Denver Burger Battle

Corn Toss In Sculpture Park

    There was a corn toss, a couple caricature artists, tables that had paper towels and lots of trash cans. It was just a fun atmosphere and I was eating hamburgers so after taking it all in, it was time to get down to business and do my personal battle with these burgers.

Night at Denver Burger Battle

Night And Lights At Denver Burger Battle

    I don’t like onions and almost every entry had onions so that was a bit of a problem. They are the one thing I can’t just scrape off because they contaminate what they touch and sometimes they’re so integral to the burger recipe that they contaminate it beyond where I can eat it. Other than that, I was game to try any new or progressive style of burger by biting right in, as served. They were all good and there were only a few that I straight out didn’t try because of the onion thing and one other one that was based on mushrooms. I don’t do mushrooms either. Or tomatoes.

Denver Burger Battle Sculpture Park Dancers

Dancers In Sculpture Park

    My second runner up is Ste. Ellie and their Ste. Ellie Burger which had fennel jam and amazing, crisp pickles. First runner up is Acorn and their Oak Grilled Double Cheeseburger with fried pickles and aioli. That little bit of garlic flavor was nice and the fried pickles were a brilliant idea. This is a classic recipe made with modern ingredients. If the cheeseburger had been invented today, it would look and taste like this one.

Denver Burger Battle And The Band

The Band At Denver Burger Battle

    The winner of Rob’s Choice at the Denver Burger Battle for 2014 is Tag and their Colorado Proud. This was unexpected because I would never have just tried a burger with green chili on it. Spicy is something that I do not associate with burgers but it worked for me, probably because it was different. On a side note, Little Man Ice Cream was there and I had some lemon sorbet on a cone that was perfect for the occasion. Cheers!

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A Fun Night at Westward Seafoods

August 7, 2014 by ·  

Alfonso EJ and Alex In Dutch Harbor Alaska

The Westward Seafoods Mafia

    The time I spent in Dutch Harbor, Alaska last year was good and bad. The good was that I met some great people and got to see some wildlife and of course the bad was that I worked for Westward Seafoods while I was there. A year ago I was so pissed off about what I went through and what I saw in that seafood processing plant that I didn’t post much about the good times I had. The good times were spent checking out bald eagles, climbing hills to take photos and checking out the town of Unalaska. There were also a few good times that took place in my shitty bunkhouse. The photos for this post were taken on one of my last nights on the island. It was just one of those nights where, after working for 12 hours, one of my roommates and a couple other friends hung out for a few hours, talking about God knows what but having fun the entire time.

    Alfonso is on the left, flipping me off. I forget exactly why, but whatever the reason was, it sure seemed to be funny. We were all poor in Dutch Harbor and alcohol is expensive so of course it makes sense that lots of people bought lots of alcohol up there. Nothing helps a poor person cope with a shitty job and lack of money like spending what you have on booze. Those of you that know me know that I don’t drink beer so there may or may not be a bottle of vodka just outside the frame. I may or may not have paid $30 for that fucking bottle.

Alfonso EJ and Alex Fist Bump In Dutch Harbor Alaska

Group Fist Bump

    So, drinks start flowing, stories get told and things progress from flipping each other off to fist bumps. The other two guys in the photo standing next to Alfonso are Alex and E.J. I worked with E.J. in “D” section on the Surimi side of Westward Seafoods and I met Alex, probably through E.J. In wanting to maintain proper fist bump etiquette, I bumped with my right hand and held the camera with my left. Check out Alfonso being too cool for school by bumping with his left hand!

Alex Showing His Tattoos In Dutch Harbor Alaska

Showing Off Tattoos

    Tattoos and scars will inevitably show up and be compared amongst a crowd like this. I have three tattoos, none of which have ever made an appearance on my blog. I got them all whilst serving in The Navy in the early nineties. I have a few scars too but most of them have to do with inline skating.

Rob Hurlbut Dutch Harbor Alaska Westward Seafoods

Good People

    Pleasant nights like this didn’t happen very often during the three months I was in Alaska. We worked 12-18 hours a day every day of the week so sleep was the Holy Grail of free time up there. Being able to get four friends in a room at the same time for reasons other than sleep only happened during meals and rare nights like this one. I remember asking for a cigarette for this shot. I don’t smoke but I thought it would look cool for the shot we were trying to compose. The problem was that the smoke was killing me so of course I’m making a funny face in a photo that I otherwise think is pretty neat. Anyway, three or four days later I was off the island and headed back to San Diego. Six months after that, I moved back to Denver, ending my eight year vacation in sunny California. Cheers!

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A Spider in the Yard

August 2, 2014 by ·  

spider and web on white pipe

A Spider Spins A Web

     I’ve spent a lot of time in the yard this summer, planting lots of trees and doing general chores to help the place look like a lush and private paradise. I like getting back to and becoming one with nature so even though it’s hard work that entails digging holes and schlepping rocks, I enjoy it. Three months into this project I have reached a point where I’m spending more time looking at what I’ve done and less time on the physical labor aspect; I’ve planted more than 40 trees, 60 shrubs and vines and hundreds of flowers. Everything is growing nicely so every day it gets a little easier to visualize what the yard will look like in a couple years and how much people will enjoy it.

spider and tall web

A Skyscraper Spiderweb

    The insect and arachnid population of the yard is already reaping the benefits. The impetus for this post came from a spider that spun an interesting looking web. This little guy or gal lives in a small piece of white PVC pipe and spun itself a skyscraper web connecting to a purple leafed plant.

spider on white pipe


    Now that I’ve mentioned my planting project, I suppose you’re wondering where the photos are. Surely I’m documenting the entire process from seed to tree right? Nope. I mean, I am taking pictures of the process but they are not for public consumption. I’m afraid that all of you, my loyal readers will have to wait until the stuff I’ve planted has reached an appreciable diameter and climbed to a dignified height. They’ll get there, just be patient.

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