West Hartford is a place I’ve been to a bunch of times before, but when you go with someone new, it’s still a fun experience. That was the case with the afternoon trip Josh and I planned to the city. We both have been there before, but we wanted to go together to make our own memories.
Me being me, I instantly planned out the afternoon for us. Josh has Thursdays and Fridays off, and I had a floating holiday for Veterans Day, so I took this past Thursday off. Luckily the weather was nice that day so we were able to do all of our activities without it raining or being too cold. (Fall in New England is super fun.)
Our first stop was Elizabeth Park. I went once with my parents years ago and hadn’t been back since, and I think Josh had been there a few times before. Some of the trees still had their leaves and the foliage looked really pretty.
The main garden at the Park is the rose garden, and we just missed most of it being in bloom. The greenery that was left was still pretty to walk through, but it’s definitely worth going to the garden during the summer when everything is in bloom.
We walked through some of the smaller gardens, too, and we saw a bunch of dogs out for walks as well as people out with their families, some runners, and a few people taking pictures. Before we left, we went to the Sunrise Overlook where you can see the Hartford skyline. I zoomed in a bit in the photo below but you can see the high rise buildings as well as the gold dome of the state capital building peeking up over the trees.
Our next stop was New Park Brewing. I hadn’t been to the brewery before but I’ve had cans from there and I liked the 4 pack I had gotten. I got the Blender Brunch—which had flavors of cranberries and tangerines—and Josh got Cloudscape, an IPA.
Inside the brewery was really cute; it was very woodsy and had Einstein lights hanging from the ceiling. From where we were sitting, you could see the tanks in the back. There was also an outside seating area but once the sun went down, it was going to get chilly, so we stayed inside.
Our final stop was Blue Back Square and West Hartford Center. Both are right next to each other and offer a variety of restaurants and shops. We decided to go to World of Beer for dinner, mostly because they had a giant pretzel on the menu. Josh and I both got flights; mine was Firefly Hollow Lust, Evil Genuis Just Vibin’, Hoax Raspberry and Toasted Marshmallow, and Back Each Double Scoop. I think for the first time ever I didn’t really like one of the beers. The Evil Genuis Just Vibin’ smelled and tasted a bit like cough syrup. I only drank half of the glass. My favorite of the four was the Hoax Raspberry and Toasted Marshmallow—the redish one in the photo.
We split the giant pretzel and for our meals, I got the brunch burger and Josh got the truffle burger. Both were very good.
After dinner, we walked around Blue Back Square and West Hartford Center, which were both decorated already for Christmas. Josh tried to tell me that the lighted reindeer was to scale.
Overall, it was a great afternoon, and as fun as our big day trips are, I still appreciate the little adventures we go on together around the state.