Write Notepads Visit

Recently, Chris Rothe from Write Notepads & Co invited the Trohv staff down to his book-binding joint in southwest Baltimore.  We were happy to oblige, since we love seeing behind the scenes of our local vendors.

IMG_5321 Chris is a third-generation bookbinder, so he knows what he’s doing. Write Notepads & Co uses old-school technology to produce high-quality notepads. Massive, Heidelberg letter-presses are used with vegetable based inks to print the board stock covers. They are then filled with plain or lined paper. Each Write Notepad is made of high-quality, American-sourced components. We are proud to carry their oh so popular Baltimore Limited Edition notepads, which were recently featured in Baltimore Magazine.

IMG_5313 For every notebook sold, Write Notepads & Co donates a companion notebook to a Baltimore City student. Inside each notebook is a code that you can look-up on their website to see which school will receive the donation.

IMG_0927 We were thrilled when Chris informed us that we would be making our own notebooks during our visit. After a quick demo, Chris set us up on their Vandercook press and an image from the Globe collection, and we got to work. A few days later, Chris dropped off our assembled notebooks and some other Write Notepad goodies.

IMG_0926 Much gratitude to Chris and his teammates Dave and Jon-Michael for the tour and hospitality!

Posted in adventures, office

Hex Ferments

IMG_5924In July, we attended the RADIATE! Love + Light Fund Raising Event for Melissa Kirby at the beautiful Clipper Mill Pool in the Woodberry neighborhood of Baltimore. In April, Melissa suffered a rare type of stroke that left her without the ability to move or speak. Her friends and family held the event to help cover costs of her recovery. Wanting to help, we bid on an auction item and won a fermentation class at Hex Ferments.
Last week, a few of the Trohv folks invaded Hex Ferments in Belvedere Square for an evening of fermentation. We weren’t sure what to expect, but we all love food and we were quite excited to learn more about the process of fermentation. When we arrived, owners Meaghan and Shane Carpenter graciously welcomed us into their cozy, inviting space. We put on our aprons and got ready to get to work! Around the room sat large glass containers with colorful concoctions of different fermenting veggies. In the center of the room was a large work island; on it sat the largest metal bowl we had ever seen! The second bowl contained roughly 5 lbs. of carrots, apples, scallions, cabbage, and ginger. As we started chopping everything into bite size pieces, Meaghan and Shane explained the benefits and history of fermented foods.

A few highlights:

Probiotics in fermented food improve the intestinal tract health, enhance the immune system, and reduce symptoms of lactose intolerance.

People have been fermenting foods since 10,000 BC. Originally, fermentation was used to store unused crops through winter months.

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Once we were done chopping, we added salt to taste (about 3 tablespoons to our 5lbs of veggies). Then we began massaging and squeezing the mixture to encourage the salt to bring out the moisture. Next step was filling containers; the key here was to pack them very tightly so they ended up under their own juices. Once filled, we were told they should sit on our counters with a weight to keep the mixture down in the jar. After 3-5 days, the new creation can be enjoyed.

Next we learned about kombucha. Carmen was amazed the first time she saw the SCOBY (Symbiotic Colony Of Bacteria and Yeast) maybe because it slightly resembles human skin. This is what starts the fermentation process in liquids such as kombucha, vinegar, kefir, and even ginger beer.

We had tastings of several varieties of kombucha that they sell at their shop. I think we all loved the Ginger the most (enough that we mixed it with some Rum and had another glass)! We toasted to the recovery of Melissa, new friends, and the wonderful food that we made, appropriately named Kirby Kraut.

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Posted in adventures, cooking

Our Evening Hike

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One of the best parts about living in Northern California (and more specifically Point Reyes) is that the summer air lends itself to cool evenings and mild days. It’s normal to need a light jacket when dusk hits on a July night and for the clouds to wrap themselves around the mountains when the sun begins to fall.

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Over the weekend, we decided to go hike on the Tamales Bay Trail which is less than two miles from our house. It was free, it was spontaneous…there wasn’t much more we could ask for. We were armed with a 2-year-old, my camera to capture the memories, and a Swell water bottle from Trohv. It was some of the best few hours of our lives. We were climbing rocks, chasing lizards, blowing delicate dandelions into the air, and drinking our water while overlooking beautiful scenery. Our Swell bottle kept our water cold and kept us looking quite trendy while hiking. Our little guy kept us quick on our feet so we were extra thankful we had the water to buy us time in-between chasing. Those amazing peeps at Swell not only make an awesome product that actually does what they say it will, but they also donate to a wonderful cause, Wateraid, which helps to bring clean water to the world’s poorest.  Pretty fantastic!

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We knew it was time to head out when the sun started to fall beneath the silhouette of the hills and the night sky shifted our way.  That evening, we not only walked away with one tired toddler (score one for Mom) but feeling inspired by the colors of the faded light and relishing my favorite thing from any family activity…the pictures.

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Blind Pig Party

On Saturday night, we hosted the Blind Pig Mason Shaker event in the DC shop! In case you didn’t know (I sure didn’t before this event), Blind Pig is another name for a Speakeasy which came to be during Prohibition in the 1920s. It is believed this term was coined by saloon-owner Kate Hester when her customers got too rowdy. She’d yell “Speak Easy, Boys!” to avoid unwanted attention.

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We had a great time with over 200 guests but the sage, rhubarb, and snap spirits provided by Art in the Age certainly didn’t hurt. Josh and Eric from W&P Design in Brooklyn mixed all kinds of delicious libations, which were refilled often as we all ate short rib sliders, fried oysters, and spicy-sweet corn bread provided by The Brooklyn Star. All of us here at Trohv have a soft spot in our hearts for innovative small business endeavors and love that we could help support the guys from W&P as they introduce theirMason Shaker, the smartest cocktail shaker we’ve ever seen!

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Many thanks to the charming band Welcome to Hoonah for being kind enough to come up from Roanoke for the event. They rocked it out with original songs and adorable covers like Nancy Sinatra’s Bang Bang.

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Thanks again to everyone who came out- the event was a huge success! I am sadly leaving the store to move to NY in January but couldn’t be more appreciative of the beautiful people and experiences I’ve encountered while working at Trohv! You guys rule!

posted by Paige Vickers

Steel City

Apparently, there’s quite a rivalry between Baltimore and Pittsburgh. And it’s intense! The history between the Ravens and the Steelers seems to be rooted in and sustained by genuine dislike and distrust of the other. Being a Baltimore-transplant and a complete fool when it comes to football politics, I’ve been blissfully unaffected by this rivalry and accompanying aversion of each city. And, for the most part, I’m glad I’ve been so oblivious. I recently spent a couple of days in Pittsburgh and I wouldn’t have wanted any preconceived judgments to get in the way of my experience. It was my first visit to the Steel City, but it won’t be my last. I loved it! 

I spent most of my time eating, wandering, and admiring just a few of the over 400 bridges in this beautiful city. I only had a couple of days to spend in the city, so here is a quick list of my recommended highlights:

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Union Pig & Chicken This barbecue and fried chicken joint is located in the East Liberty neighborhood. We went here for a late lunch and feasted on pork shoulder, fried chicken, and brisket. It was absolutely delicious! One of the menu shiners is the Meaty Mac: baked mac n’ cheese with bits of brisket and pork shoulder, ohmylord!

Salt of the Earth This farm-to-table style restaurant is the smart, delicious, and thoughtful child of chef Kevin Sousa and architects Doug and Liza Cruze. The menu, which is artistically drawn on a giant chalkboard wall, changes weekly to reflect the local and seasonal fare. I’d recommend sitting downstairs, if possible. The tables are communal and rustic, making the atmosphere relaxed and cozy.

Pageboy Salon & Boutique  This is a great place to go for vintage clothing. It’s located in the Lawrenceville neighborhood, which is adorable. There are lots of shops, bars, and restaurants in this quirky borough.

Wigle  Fortunately, we just happened across this whiskey distillery while we were wandering around The Strip. Pronounced “wiggle”, this distillery uses organic ingredients from local farmers. And the owners are soooooo nice. They were closed the day we were there, yet they invited us in, shared their history, and gave us samplings.

House of 1000 Beers  This beer emporium is located outside of Pitt in New Kensington. If you’re a beer enthusiast or appreciate craft beer, the 30-minute drive is TOTALLY WORTH IT. With over 46 draft beers on tap and 1000 beers in stock, this is a perfect, off-the-beaten-path spot to spend a lazy afternoon.

Posted by: Carmen
Carmen is an owner of Trohv. She is from a cattle and tobacco farm in Kentucky but has lived in the Charles Village neighborhood of Baltimore for 10 years. She loves to discover new music and new places and sip good bourbon.

Posted in adventures

Beers & Spears!


We hosted the first of our two Beers and Spears dates here in Baltimore just over a week ago, and it seems everyone had a blast! Union Craft Brewing and Gordy’s Pickle Jar were here serving up delicious treats! And Blue Water Baltimore was here to represent and share their mission! We sure hope you’ll come out and join us in DC if you weren’t able to make it to the Baltimore event.  We’ll be teaming up with Gordy’s again, 3 Stars Brewing & The Takoma Foundation to host what we hope will be another fantastic event.  To reserve your special edition mason jar for the October 14th date, call our DC shop!  202.829.2941  Beers and pickles will be served from 12-3pm!


Photos Courtesy of Daniel McGarrity Photography

Posted in adventures, events, product

DIY toy barn

 

 


For those of you with kiddos, how hard is it to foster a good imagination in them with modern day toys and technology? I am always on the prowl for a good fun family project to include the little man in that will encourage the use of his imagination. As a child I grew up going to our family farm on the weekends and it was there that I have my happiest memories. I was able to run through the pastures, chase down cows in a golf cart, climb hay stacks, get dirty and play all day under the supervision of daylight and tall trees. As a parent it’s important to me that I continue this tradition of free play for my little boy. So recently, the Hubs and I built a fun little barn for Oliver out of a cardboard box, hot glue gun and some paint we had lying around the house. It was a no cost DIY that was super simple and completed in half a day. I dressed it up with some remnant fabric swatches given to me by our local upholstery shop and made them into quaint little pennant flags strung across with some fun twine from Trohv . It was not only a great way to spend our day making it, but the time he has spent peeking through the barn windows and galloping his horse through the doors is enough to make this mommy a happy lady. I don’t think a price can ever be put on pure playtime, but this DIY was that much sweeter because it was free. What are some of the things you do with your kids to invoke their precious imaginations? I’d love to know!
 

Posted by: Courtney
Courtney is currently living outside of San Francisco with her hubby and her son, Oliver Tate. This full time mom also dabbles in home décor, diy projects, entertaining, photography and much more on her blog alittleglassbox She has never met a piece of sparkly jewelry, a chocolate chip cookie, or a reclaimed piece of wood she didn’t like

Posted in adventures, DIY, kids

sunscreen for kiddos


One of my favorite parts of summer is feeling the sunshine on my skin. However, it backfires when I’m out in it all day long and I quickly start to feel like a nice crisp piece of bacon frying in a pan. As a mom to a little boy who loves playing outside more than anything, I’ve been in need of a good go-to sunscreen.

The problem has been that I don’t want just any sunscreen; I want a nice strapping superhero sunscreen that goes around protecting innocent children from Mr. Harmful Rays and fights crime against the evil Mr. Sun Burn (I know, I’m slightly crazy, but this really happens in my brain, people). Recently I tired Dr. Robyn’s sunscreen when we went hiking along the California-Nevada border. It was so fantastic that I now refer to it as ‘Awesomness In a Tube.’ I was immediately in love with the fact that it was unscented. I mean really, I can only take the smell of coconut for so long before I need to pull the car over and grab myself a fruity mixed drink with a cute little umbrella. And since I had to abstain from the influence of a cocktail, it’s best that it was unscented and not alcohol inducing. I was also shocked that it didn’t leave a greasy film on my hands after applying it. This prevented me from feeling like I was slathering butter on my toddler before sending him into the hot sun. Overall, it was a win-win. No cranky sunburned kiddo, and a nice pat on the back for mom. We are now planning an upcoming trip to the beach in the next few weeks and you can bet your britches that this fabulous lotion will be in tow for our sandy adventure.

You can buy Dr. Robins sunscreen in the kids section at either our Baltimore or DC locations

Posted by: Courtney
Courtney is currently living outside of San Francisco with her hubby and her son, Oliver Tate. This full time mom also dabbles in home décor, diy projects, entertaining, photography and much more on her blog alittleglassbox She has never met a piece of sparkly jewelry, a chocolate chip cookie, or a reclaimed piece of wood she didn’t like

Posted in adventures, product

Artifact Coffee


There are not many things I love more than a steaming cup of simple black coffee in the morning, but Artifact (owned by Woodberry Kitchen) has gotten me trying such fancy drinks as cappuccinos and macchiatos, and LOVING them.  The menu is delicious as well, sticking with local & seasonal favorites (go get yourself the tomato sandwich now) as Woodberry always does.  I prefer savory breakfast sandwiches but they’ve also got fresh baked goods in the case, and I love everything I have tried for lunch.  I love the fact that we’ve now got a place for a sit down meal where we bump into friends and locals, where we don’t feel rushed and there is always a good record playing.

We just want to say a big congratulations to Spike, Amy, Nancy, Allie, Corey, Greg, and the rest of the Woodberry team who worked so hard getting these doors open.

 

A fun little game I like to play when I’m dining at Artifact… how many little trinkets can I spot from Trohv? !

Posted by: Katie
Katie is in charge of photography and design for Trohv.  She loves coffee, beer and fresh flowers.  She owns Petal and Print a boutique floral and stationery design company.

Il Buco

A couple of weeks ago, Kohli and I went to New York for the National Stationery Show. It’s one of my favorite shows because the stationers and designers are so smart, clever, fun, and NICE. And it’s a real bonus that the show is in NYC, one of the best cities to indulge my culinary interests.

We headed over to Il Buco Alimentari & Vineria for the afternoon for a late lunch. Turns out, I could’ve spent every afternoon here! When you walk in, you’re greeted by the coziness and warmth of a curated artisanal market and grocery. Step down a few steps and you’re in the restaurant where the ambiance is relaxed and cheerful (at least when we were there at 3pm on a Tuesday)!

The décor in the restaurant matched the food—simple and rustic. We ordered quite an array of food and beverages:

Cocktail: Vispo with herradura tequila, green tomato jam, fresh lime juice, & a spicy calabrian chili
Crispy Artichokes with preserved lemon
Ricotta with sugar snap peas, pine nut granola, & mint
Grilled Sausage with charred garlic scapes, currants, & crispy carrots
Slow-Roasted Short Rib Panini with gorgonzola & onion agrodolce

I loved, and I mean loved, everything. The food was absolutely delicious and our server was super knowledgeable about the menu and food sources. The short ribs were the best I’ve ever had. Ever. And I only ate half so I was able to enjoy leftovers later that evening!

If you’re planning a trip to NYC anytime soon, I would highly recommend adding Il Buco to your itinerary. I plan on making this a regular stop on my trips to NYC. I’m not a food critic or a food blogger, but I really appreciate the sharing of authentic food and of unique food experiences. What are some of the best dining experiences you’ve ever had?

Posted by: Carmen
Carmen is an owner of Trohv. She is from a cattle and tobacco farm in Kentucky but has lived in the Charles Village neighborhood of Baltimore for almost 10 years. She loves to discover new music and new places and sip good bourbon.

Posted in adventures