While it may be 80 today, Fall is definitely here. With evening temperatures falling, patio drinking is becoming more of a challenge. I was at the Katy Trail Ice House this weekend and saw several waitresses wearing gloves to protect their hands from ice cold beers. A few customers were bundled up. One woman looked like she was ready to take on K2. It was in the 50s.
I didn't need a parka, but there was a nip in the air, and you could see your breath fog when you exhaled. After a half hour or so of drinking and watching baseball, the hand I had wrapped around my beer was pretty damn cold. It reminded me of cold weather tailgating and my long lost beer mitten from college.
The patio is the Ice House's biggest draw, and owners are fighting back against the cold weather, which threatens to cut seating by two thirds. Wood burning fire-pits are being installed on the lower patio, closest to the Katy Trail. And gas lines are being installed to run heaters to most of the remaining outdoor tables. The same gas source will feed a single fire-pit in the center of the patio.
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Hang on to your hoodies. Work on the fire features should be completed in two weeks to a month. according to the manager I spoke with today.