• Writing Contest

    October 6th, 2015 by Michal

    creepy hallway imageJoin us for the final 2015 installment of Modern Campfire Stories. Why? Because Alan Heathcock and Christian Winn will be reading seriously creepy fiction. Because there will be a kick-ass scary hotel-based micro-fiction contest. Because if you come in costume you receive happy hour prices all during the event. And because there will be crazy-freaky-writerly antics taking place all night. 7pm – 9pm on The Modern patio.

    Micro-fiction contest guidelines: Write a frightening short story integrating a HOTEL.
    The story MUST be NO LONGER than 390 words.
    Your title does NOT count in the word-count.
    You MUST use this first line: “There had been an argument down the hall.”
    You are ENCOURAGED to use this image as a springboard for your setting.
    There are many scary hotel stories and films (think Psycho, The Shining, that one with John Cusack, etc.), so work hard to avoid cliche’s.
    Originality, great characters, engaging plot, language, and the intangible creep-factor will all be rewarded. Be strange. Surprise us. Freak us out.
    NO ENTRY FEE. Deadline for entry is midnight, October 25th.
    Judged by Mary Shelly, Bram Stoker, Edgar Allen Poe.

    First Place: A one night stay at The Modern Hotel and $25 Modern gift card.

    Second Place: $35 Modern gift card.

    Third Place: $20 Modern gift card.

    Email entries to info@themodernhotel.com. Stories should appear in the body of the email, and will be read by the judges anonymously.


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  • Arriving is Departing

    September 21st, 2015 by Michal

    Just why do we love to travel? It’s an age-old question and one potential answer is that we love to travel because we can’t—and maybe we shouldn’t—answer that question. Travel can be all things to all people because it is completely what each of us make of it. Travel is life.
    Try this. Pick up an in-flight magazine and you’ll find all kinds of force-fed messages trying put you in a tiny, demographic box. Are you an adventurer, spa-enthusiast, road warrior, foodie, or sight-seer? Yes, no, and all the above. Contrary to the mass marketing gloss, we are always seeking new experiences. Our journey isn’t about who we are, but more about who we are becoming.
    This is why those who love travel are more than happy with ambiguities and even contradictions. We love living “in-between,” not being here or there. This is where the magic is. Where the personal becomes mythical. You’ll find this tension in literature, film, and television. From Homer’s odyssey through Kerouac’s On The Road to David Lynch’s Wild At Heart and Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown, it truly is the journey and not the destination.
    Case in point, this excessively detailed literary road map  of America. Here’s to those that keep going for the sake of going. Happy going.

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  • Ten Reasons to Cheer for Beer!

    June 8th, 2015 by Michal

    I can’t think of a better spring pastime than drinking local beer. If that’s your idea of fun, too, come and visit the Modern, where you can ride a bike to some of the


    Idaho Beer

    best local breweries in the west. Need additional encouragement? Here are ten of my reasons to check out our local beer scene:

    1. Beer isn’t expensive.
    2. Beer has no pretense.
    3. Beer is communal, uniting hippies, yuggies (young urban granola), granolas or business types. A taco truck and a beer could make friends of us all.
    4. If you happen to spill it on your shoes or shirt, good beer doesn’t smell that bad the next day.
    5. The west makes the best beer in the country.
    6. If you walk or ride your bike to each location in Boise with great beer, the exercise will balance out the added calories you’ll consume, resulting in a zero weight gain.
    7. Beer isn’t fussy (and please, let’s try not to make it that way.) My palate loves a beer with flavor. Personally, I like my beer on the hoppy side, but I also love a good porter or a stout. [I don’t want to say it has good legs, unless you can
    8. Even gluten-free beer can taste good.
    9. My grandpa drank cheap beer, and like so many of us, he knew that even bad beer tastes good when you’re with someone you love.
    10. Beer pairs well with many of the Modern Hotel’s appetizers and dinners. Charcuterie and beer? I say yes! Mushroom empanada and a Payette Brewing North Fork? Oui. Lamb Birria and beer? You betcha! Ginger Pork Bánh Mi? No problem!

    Some local breweries to check out:

    • Woodland Empire
    • Boise Brewing Co
    • Highlands Hollow
    • Payette Brewing CO.
    • Sockeye Brewing
    • Crooked Fence Brewing


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  • Negroni Week – Drinking for a Cause

    June 2nd, 2015 by Michal


    Drink with a purpose this week – and we’re not talking about just getting a buzz. June 1-7 is Negroni Week, brought to you by Imbibe Magazine. Nationwide, bars are donating a portion of the proceeds from each Negroni cocktail purchased, with funds going to charities of their choice.

    The Modern Hotel and Bar’s pick is Interfaith Sanctuary, an organization we consider vital to Boise. From their website: “Interfaith Sanctuary Housing Services is a collaboration of people of faith and people of conscience who have joined together to shelter and serve individuals experiencing homelessness. Sanctuary provides overnight shelter for men, women, and children and provides supportive services that promote greater self-sufficiency, improved well-being, and permanent housing acquisition.”

    Now, that’s a cause we can all raise a glass to!

    So come, on down, and let’s do good while we drink this week. To quote the wise singer –song-writer John Prine, “Hey, it ain’t such a long drop, don’t stammer don’t stutter, from the diamonds in the sidewalk to the dirt in the gutter.”

    Cheers to living and taking care of each other.

    Traditional Negroni

    Classic Negroni
    1.50oz Tanqueray
    0.75oz Carpano Antica
    0.75oz Campari
    Flamed orange

    Negroni Sbagliato

    Negroni Sbagliato
    0.75oz Campari
    0.75oz Carpano Antica
    Orange twist


    1.50oz Bulleit Rye
    0.75oz Carpano Antica
    0.75oz Campari
    Flamed orange

    Tahona Negroni

    Tahona Negroni
    1.50oz Fortaleza blanco Tequila
    1oz Dolin dry vermouth
    1oz Cynar

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  • Seize the Day and the Season – Eat Seasonally

    May 20th, 2015 by Michal

    Morels with Farro & Peas

    Morels with Farro & Peas

    We don’t usually think of spring as a time of abundance. After all, most of us are still planting – or planning – our gardens. Abundance is a term we reserve for fall, with its harvest bounty. Still, for a brief time in the spring, Idaho’s mountains, streams, and ditch banks yield up treasures: morels, asparagus, fiddlehead ferns, and baby greens. You’ll find them all at the Modern’s restaurant, where a friendly delivery person from Idaho’s Bounty stops by with the seasonal goo

    Our chefs, Nate Whitley and  Alex Cardoza, are incorporating as many seasonal elements into a their dishes as possible. Nightly specials and brunch items currently feature this produce of the moment. But hurry, the season will change quickly and the chance to enjoy these culinary delights won’t last long.

     Morels with Farro and Peas

cup farro, rinsed
cup fresh sweet peas
    one handful of fresh spinach
    Salt and pepper
tablespoons butter
ounces morel mushrooms
    1 clove of garlic
    ¼ c dry sherry
    1 ½ c vegetable stock
    a lemon
    Parmesan cheese to taste

    Bring 4 quarts water to boil. Add farro and 1 tablespoon salt. Return to boil, reduce to simmer until tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Drain well and set aside.

    In a shallow saute pan, bring ¼ inch of water to a boil. Add the peas and cook until they turn bright green, about 2 to 3 minutes. Then plunge the peas into ice water to shock them. Drain, and set aside.

    Heat a saute pan with about a tablespoon of olive oil. Add a small bit of butter to the pan. When the butter begins to sizzle, add the mushrooms. Shake around the pan and salt well. After about 30 seconds add 1 sliced garlic clove. When the garlic starts to brown, deglaze the pan with sherry. Allow the sherry to reduce a little, then add a splash of vegetable stock and a tablespoon of butter. Reduce this while swirling the pan around to emulsify the butter. Finish with fresh chopped chives.

    In a small pot, combine the farro with about ¾ c of vegetable stock. Heat this, once hot, add the peas. Season the pot with salt, a squeeze of half a lemon, a tablespoon of butter, and some fresh grated parmesan. Add the handful of spinach and stir it in until it just wilts.

    Carefully spoon the farro mixture into bowls with a slotted spoon. Then pour a small pool of broth over the farro. Top with fresh grated parmesan, and the sauteed morels

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