What could be better than spending quality time with my lovely daughter Hannah exploring Boise’s best bars and sipping tasty cocktails? Maybe adding in some tasty nibbles along the way so that we can sample more spirits? Having Thom as our designated driver? What a perfect afternoon!
Hannah knows her momma well and surprised me with a thoughtful birthday present that we could enjoy together. After your kids grow up and leave the nest, you quickly find out that any time you are able to be together is precious and to be savored like a fine wine or aged whiskey. Luckily, she gets me and gave me not only time with her but tasty hooch. LOVE. THIS. GIRL
Her birthday card made me cry and I am not a crier like Thom-just saying. “You are the absolute best mom and Nai Nai!” Nothing beats that. Ever. I’m going to laminate this card and pull it out every time I’m having a challenging day. “Let’s go scout some bars & restaurants so you can have some new fave places when you live here full time.” She wants to spend time with her momma? Be still my heart. I’m not sure when we’ll be able to make that dream of living in Boise full time real but I’m working on it.
So, off we went this past week on the Boise Booze + Bites Happy Hour Tour hosted by Indulge Boise Food Tours. I like their tag line, “Eat Well. Indulge Often.” Okay, I can embrace that wisdom. Our friendly tour guide, Lauren, told us about their company which started in 2016 when the owner decided to get off the corporate track working for the WNBA and settled back in her hometown of Boise. Thom and I have taken advantage of walking tours and cooking classes all over the world in our travels. Not only do you meet cool people but you learn stuff too. We like them.
On this tour, I learned all about my daughter’s first drinking escapade (at a much younger age than previously disclosed), her favorite booze (beer-New Belgium Rogue) and her favorite food (Thai or sushi). Lauren prompted discussion at every venue we visited with probing conversation-starting questions. Even with family members, this can be fun and eye opening. Hannah’s choice of the one place she would live if she could? DC. She spent a summer interning for Congressman Minnick while she was in college and it was political heaven for her even with multiple roommates (including cockroaches). Me-NYC. No place like it in the world. Fav meal and drink for me? I would choose a Caprese Salad with a nice Cab.
We explored new places like Flatbread Neapolitan Pizza tucked away on the second floor in an office building overlooking the downtown core. I would probably never have gone to this place but the flatbread, washed down with a tart Raspberry Lemon Drop, was delicious so we’ll be back. Hannah’s drinks during our tour had a summer garden theme either by accident or design: Sage Cucumber at Flatbread and Lemongrass Sage with a Lemongrass straw at Press & Pony.
Mai Tai’s house cocktail, Mai Thai Old Way with dark rum, rhum agricole, dry curacao, orgeat, fresh line and mint, was a refreshing way to wash down some veggie spring rolls. The atmosphere here is beautiful with overhead glass sculptures and water features. Lauren said their Happy Hour is legendary and embraced by Boise locals. I’ve had lunch there before but was impressed with their Happy Hour cocktail list, which I hope to sample in the future.
Now, I have started my own “Best of Boise Old Fashioned” contest to justify my tasting of the classic cocktail wherever we go. So, I sampled The Mode and Press & Pony on this tour. No contest. Press & Pony, an intimate speakeasy with serious bartenders, won by a large margin. The Mode’s Old Fashioned was okay but lacked the nuances of the one at Press & Pony. There, Eric took my challenge seriously and laid down a cocktail I could enjoy with my Boise Fry Co. veggie burger (black bean and quinoa) and red potato fries.
Indulge Boise offer several types of tours: Historic Downtown Boise Food & Cultural Tour, Capital City Sunday Brunch and private tours. Check them out here if you are visiting Boise or are a local who just wants to have fun. Cheers!