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Here at St Ambrose, we are missing the buzz of the bees as they retreat & reboot down on the farm in the Florida Panhandle with the boss man and Mrs. Jones. Winter being what it is here in the northlands, the honey bees become snowbirds and travel by the semi loads, tucked safely into their bee boxes, while visions of sunny honey combs dance in their heads. The team down there help restore the worker bee population and tend to the queens. Boss man gets to return to his roots, working directly with his beloved bees, while the idea factory that is his visionary mind, keeps churning out ways to grow and keep the buzz alive.

We love & miss him! But while the cat’s away…. these mice decided to throw a party!

Leap Year Jig

It is Leap Year, after all! You’re probably asking yourself what exactly does one celebrates on Leap Year, right? So we did a little research, digging around to discover just what the big deal is, and we were pretty fascinated by the origins of this day that only comes every four years! It’s really a mathematical equation that seeks balance, something winemakers strive towards also. So we’ve got that in common. But it’s a whole lot more of a smarty pants concept than this blogger can spell out, so I’m letting Wikipedia break it down for you, dear reader!

leap year (also known as an intercalary year or a bissextile year) is a year containing one additional day (or, in the case of lunisolar calendars, a month) added to keep the calendar year synchronized with the astronomical or seasonal year. Because seasons and astronomical events do not repeat in a whole number of days, calendars that have the same number of days in each year drift over time with respect to the event that the year is supposed to track. By inserting (also called intercalating) an additional day or month into the year, the drift can be corrected. A year that is not a leap year is called a common year.

For example, in the Gregorian calendar, each leap year has 366 days instead of the usual 365, by extending February to 29 days rather than the common 28. Similarly, in the lunisolar Hebrew calendar, Adar Aleph, a 13th lunar month is added seven times every 19 years to the twelve lunar months in its common years to keep its calendar year from drifting through the seasons.

The name “leap year” comes from the fact that while a fixed date in the Gregorian calendar normally advances one day of the week from one year to the next, the day of the week in a leap year will advance two days (from March onwards) due to the extra day added at the end of February (thus “leaping over” one of the days in the week). For example, Christmas fell on Tuesday in 2001, Wednesday in 2002, and Thursday in 2003 but then “leapt” over Friday to fall on a Saturday in 2004.

In the Gregorian calendar, the current standard calendar in most of the worldmost years that are multiples of 4 are leap years. In each leap year, the month of February has 29 days instead of 28. Adding an extra day to the calendar every four years compensates for the fact that a period of 365 days is shorter than a tropical year by almost 6 hours. This calendar was first used in 1582.

Some exceptions to this basic rule are required since the duration of a tropical year is slightly less than 365.25 days. Over a period of 4 centuries, the accumulated error of adding a leap day every 4 years amounts to about 3 extra days. The Gregorian calendar therefore removes three leap days every 400 years, which is the length of its leap cycle. This is done by removing February 29 in the three century years (multiples of 100) that cannot be exactly divided by 400. The years 2000 and 2400 are leap years, while 1800, 1900, 2100, 2200, 2300 and 2500 are common years. By this rule, the average number of days per year is 365 + 14 − 1100 + 1400 = 365.2425. The rule can be applied to years before the Gregorian reform (the proleptic Gregorian calendar), if astronomical year numbering is used.

(Thank you, Wiki!)

Pretty great reason to let us pour you a glass of your favorite fermented beverage, don’t you agree?  On Friday night, February 26, we’ll do just that while leaping. Seriously, come see for yourself! Because on Friday, Alfredo Improvisational Quartet will be jamming into the night with their hot licks!

Alfredo brings the thirsty to the well like the Pied Piper. St Ambrose is always hoppin’ when these boys assemble. We’re pretty sure the mead tastes better during & after they’ve been here, from all the vibration of the music and good vibes passed around. Happy to help us celebrate the leap in the time and space continuum, they’re staying a bonus hour, in honor of the bonus day. We’ll get this party started at 6PM and the mead and the music will flow until 10PM.

Make sure you bring your appetite, because we’re here to whet it. We’re rolling three deep with our palate pleasing pairings for the party! (Say that 3 times quickly. Go ahead. We’ll wait…)


Check us out!

A Little Something: small plate featuring Sleeping Bear Farms hypnotic honey mustard, a fresh and funky jerky pate, pretzel twists galore and oven-baked, multi-grain, gluten free crackers for $4.

A Little Something More: Tasty, local, cured meats, fancy cheeses, & a collection of fermented and pickled veggies served with those oven baked, multi-grain, gluten free crackers for $8.

A Whole Lotta Something: We like to raise a loving cup to this moveable feast fit for a Mead Weilding Viking. It includes a piquant array of cured meats, aged cheese, pickled veggies, jerky pate`, brie wedges with a blackberry honey drizzle, relishes and crackers for $14.

And, as if you needed any more reasons to sparkle on over here Friday night, we’ve got the Dancing Bare Ambrosia on tap! That’s right–we’ve added bubbles to an already perfect blend of fermented honey & grapes! There’s also a brand new draft mead waiting for you that we like to call Smoove, because it is! Supple and sweet as honey, this gingery peach carbonated melomel is reminiscent of our Royal Reserve (which was aged in bourbon barrels for the ultimate in smoothness.) Smoove puts a little fire in your belly, coming in at around 10% ABV, reminding you to savor the flavor and always drink responsibly.

Which brings us to our final newsworthy paragraph: The waning moon on Friday will be 86.53% full. If you should find yourself near enough to ski or snowshoe your way, over the river, through the woods, under La Bella Luna, to the party, we’ll not only give you a high five, we’ll also give you 10% off— AND…. if you were born on February 29 in 1994 or earlier we’ve got a goody bag with your name on it, so show us your I.D. and collect on the goodness that awaits you, Leap Year Baby.