The 2016 Parkmead Chili Cook-Off was a hit!

img_9381Remember my blog about the two new breweries in Walnut Creek? Farm Creek Brewery’s stout beer became the secret ingredient to my Texas chili at our 2nd annual Parkmead Neighborhood chili cook-off! I took third place overall, and realize to win, I can’t have too much spice – that darn competitive nature of mine.

We moved up they time by an hour because we were worried about the rain. We had 12 people submit their chili, ranging from vegetarian to chicken chili and of course standard meat chili.

Every single one of them was delicious, and the rain held off until the very end when we got under the tent and finished off the keg!

We blocked off a small street, had a pumpkin-decorating table for the kids and plenty of food and drink. Once the rain arrived, one dad pulled out a blow up boat and the kids had a blast in the rare October rainstorm.

Parkmead is a wonderful Walnut Creek neighborhood walking distance to downtown and great schools. If you want to know more about the various Walnut Creek neighborhoods, give me a call!

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Two new breweries have opened in Walnut Creek!

img_9237 Attention, beer lovers! The Walnut Creek brewery scene has added two new hotspots to supplement shops like ØL. The most well-known, probably, is Calicraft Brewery, which opened its doors recently over by Shadelands, just off Ygnacio Valley Rd.

Calicraft, famous for its fun, local beer names (“The Bay,” “Oak Town,” and my personal favorite, “Buzzerkeley”) and for using unique California-grown ingredients like starthistle honey and cluster hops, was officially founded in 2012.img_9235

The small taphouse is in an industrial area at the back of a parking lot across the street from Fieldhouse Sports Center. Besides the beer on tap, Calicraft sells chips and jerky and growlers. They have a cool interior space with a huge TV and an outdoor deck with corn hole and a grass area with Adirondack chairs. It’s a really cool place to spend an evening with friends after work!

Closer to downtown is Farm Creek Brewery, which is literally just a small img_9346tasting area next to the tanks of the brewery. It’s located on Pine St., just around the corner from Pinky’s Pizza. Even though the space is small, it’s very hip and fun, and the service is friendly.

The owner and founder started homebrewing years ago and finally made img_9347his dream come true to open a location in Walnut Creek, where he and his family live. The brewery has a 12-tap system and homemade flights.

I can’t recommend their “Heather’s Limit” stout highly enough. Even members of my Walnut Creek Lifestyle team who hate stouts said it was delicious, and it made for a really nice addition to my homemade chili – a future blog!

Calicraft is open Weds.-Fri. from 4-10 p.m., as well as Saturday from 12-10 p.m. and Sunday from 12-8 p.m. Farm Creek Brewery is open Mon.-Fri. from 4-9 p.m., Saturday 12-9 p.m., and Sunday from 1-7 p.m. Enjoy!