Bom, bom bom bom ba bom, Brown Suuugahh

Thanks to being a bonehead and hurting myself during a workout on Monday, I’m not getting up in the morning at 4:45 to go work out.  Guess that means I can have a beer tonight!  After all, it makes my back feel better.

This is a pretty good brown ale offering from Samuel Adams that  I picked up in a Harvest Collection multipack.  Nice and dark and fallish but not as thick or flavorful as it looks like it would be.  Keeping with letting an ale warm before writing it off, I let this one knock off the chill and only then did it bring out the toffee and caramel hints that it should.  Still .. I really love most Samuel Adams beers, but the Hazel Brown just didn’t do it for me.  It honestly tastes like a mass produced attempt at a microbrewed brown ale.  Which it kinda is, but it doesn’t have to taste like it.  And usually Sam Adams doesn’t.  A pity really.

Unlike the song I mentioned in the title, this brown beauty just ain’t go no soul.  Wonder if she has big legs?

Finishing it down, but will pass on it next time.  Drink well my friends!

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Categories: Ale | Leave a comment

They Ain’t All Golden

Okay.  Full disclosure here.  My goal is to do timely reviews of beers I have tried recently.  However, for a while, it’s going to be mostly catch up.  This one is catch up and will never be revisited.

I don’t have a picture of this one mainly because I don’t want to be seen with it again.  Ever.

It was a hot summer in 2011 when we got the bright idea to go camping in July.  Hot .. hot hot hot hot hot hot .. and not gonna happen again either.  Anyway, a friend of mine who shall remain unnamed (he can write his own review on this one and out himself if he wishes) had been pestering me about trying a cheap good cold thirst quencher good for hot days.  It’s name?  Bud Light Lime.

Now I should have known better, right?  But because it was indeed hot outside, and the beer was in fact cheap, I bought a 6-pack of it and took it to the campground.  Do this for me .. it’s been raining for the past few days so if you have a bird bath, go outside and fill a glass with the water from it.  Go on, I’ll wait here.

Back?  Okay, good.  Now, squeeze some lime into that glass of rainwater and bird pee and put it uncovered in a corner in your garage for seven days.  I’m not going to wait this time so let’s just pretend the time has passed.  Next, toss it into the freezer and let it get very cold but don’t freeze it.  Same deal, pretend.  Now, start chuggin’.

This would taste 1000 times better than the swill that came out of that Bud can.  By the way, neither of the ladies camping with us liked the beer either.  I’m staying far away from this mess for good, but if you are so inclined, give it a try!  Just don’t blame me.

Categories: Lager | 2 Comments

A Good Place To Start

Take a good look at that picture.  Notice the happy monk on the bottle?  See how the bubbles ride lightly on top of the luscious opaque liquid below?  That right there is brewed perfection.  Nectar of the gods.  And where I want to begin .. St. Bernardus Abt 12.

Honestly, if I had first run into this ale out somewhere, there would have been way I would have just tried it.  For starters, it costs too dang much and then it’s hard to pronounce!  I mean, that’s why I still haven’t tried Stella Artois yet!  I can’t pronounce the dang thing!  Anyway, a friend of ours wrote a review on this ale once and got me intrigued.  I still raise a glass to Danny every time I buy St. Bernies 12 .. in my opinion, the most perfect ale that has ever been created.  Belgians know something about brewing, let me tell you.  If you stick around here long enough, you might start to figure that out as well.  Germans make cars, Canadians make toques (I think), Americans make other countries fat on fast food, and Belgians make ale.  And this Belgian is king.

You will mostly find it available in the 1 pint + corked bottle shown above but occasionally in 12 oz 4-packs.  Hey, if you find some 4-packs, LET ME KNOW!  I have found the corked bottle at finer beer stores and even at Kroger on 53.  Uh oh, gave away my secret stash .. but .. if one more person finds out about this gorgeous goodness, all the better.  You may also find it on tap at Taco Mac.  More about that in a minute.  From the corked bottle, you’ll want to leave it in a dark cool place until it reaches that dark cool places “room” temp .. ideal is around 55 degrees or so.  Oh ya, let me guess – “What??!!  WARM BEER?!?!”  Heck ya.  With ales, you’ll want to server them warmer so 1) you can taste the complex flavors you’ll find in them and 2) there is so much dang alcohol in this thing, if it’s cold, that’s ALL you’ll taste!  (10% ABV!!)

So anyway, after the ale has warmed up from the deep freeze most retailers keep the poor thing in, you’ll want to uncork it.  Careful.  It will blow your face off with a run away cork and you’ll lose about half of that deliciousness to the floor.  Take it slow and gently uncork it.  NEXT .. pour it into a rounded goblet like the one you see above.  This part is important.  If you try pouring it into a fluted beer glass, a narrow mug, or some other like vessel, this ale will rebel and explode on you because of it’s high carbonation.  Now, hold it up to the light and try to peer through .. THEYS STUFFS FLOATIN’ IN IT!! .. yup, it’s re-fermented in the bottle so the “floatin’ stuffs” is good stuff.  Finally, take a taste and understand what all the fuss is about.  True beauty.

I really can’t say enough about this ale, but because I’m getting long winded, I think I have.  Now, let me revisit that Taco Mac thing from earlier.  If you find this ale on a menu sometime and decide to give it a try .. order it as a “St Bernies 12” (they will know what you are talking about) and then, like at Taco Mac, let it sit once the waiter/waitress brings it out to you.  Watch some sports on TV, or shoot the breeze with your dinner mates while you wait .. wait for the travesty of the freezing cold ale sitting in front of you to warm to a delicious temperature.  Shame on you Taco Mac, you should know better.

Oh, one more thing .. for goodness sake, don’t re-cork the bottle.  Share this with friends .. they will thank you for it!  Peace, and happy exploring!

Categories: Ale | Leave a comment

Magic Hat – Elder Betty

I’m that guy on a road trip, that runs into a store and checks out the sodas looking for the something I’ve never had, the stranger the better.  This has kind of came over into the beer world as well.  I saw Magic Hat Elder Betty and thought I should give it a try.  I saw the  elder berry flavor label and immediately thought of Ikea, I snagged if I remember correctly a juice box type thing of elder berry drink on one of my trips there.  I don’t remember hating it and I don’t remember it being one of the best things ever.

When I poured this beer I noticed the elder berry smell, a quick sip and elder berry is there for sure.  The elder berry aftertaste lasted for quite a while, I have really never noticed an aftertaste lingering this long.  I classify this as a summer beer, just sitting outside chilling, watching the day go by.  While drinking this my wife was sitting next to me and she commented that she could smell the elder berry.  I finished it up and was very pleased with it.  It’s on my list of “yeah, I liked it” beers.

Magic Hat has little snippets under the caps this one says “If You’re In Jail, Your Friends Pay Bail”, so I guess I’m good for now.

Categories: Hefe | 1 Comment

My History With Beer

I’d have to say I’m still really new to beer.  It’s within the last 10 or so years, that I’ve really come to appreciate it.  I do remember back when I was 21, it was a hot summer day, the grass was way higher than it should be.  I started to cut the grass with the old push mower.  I eventually ran out of gas, so I drove up to the store to fill up the can.  I pumped the gas and went inside to pay (remember those days?).  I glanced back and saw the beer cooler and thought about making a purchase, since I was 21 and it was really hot outside.   I decided to buy a six-pack of Miller Genuine Draft, I’d seen the commercials and figured it had to be refreshing.

I drove home, filled up the mower and popped the top of my MGD.  I remember taking a sip, then a swallow, then a gulp.  It was so hot outside and that beer was so cold, it tasted wonderful!  I finished it off and continued my mowing journey.  Eventually thirst got a hold of me again, so I popped the top of another and drank it while I mowed, and another, eventually downing 5 of those bad boys in about an hour.  The next day, it took me a good 20 minutes to go back and mow all the parts of the lawn I missed the day before (I don’t know why).

I had one last MGD in the fridge, I popped the top hoping to recreate the day before and was surprised that it wasn’t as good.  I guess the conditions were perfect the day before, It just didn’t taste the same.

A week later, it was time to mow again, so I went to the store and snagged some Heineken, it was German and exotic, it has to be good.  I got home and opened one up.  Took a swig and spit it out.  It had to be bad.  I poured it out and grabbed another bottle, same thing, it was horrible.  The remaining beer sat in the fridge until someone eventually drank them.

I had the occasional beer, but definitely was not a beer fan.

Guinness changed all that, I remember talking with friends at work about beer and it was brought up to try Guinness draught, so I made a mental note.  Eventually I got found some Guinness and gave it a try, I really enjoyed it and it Guinness became the beer I looked for when I went out.  Guinness was my gateway!

I then started trying other beers and found out that some of them where actually pretty tasty.  I’m no beer expert, I don’t claim to be one, I classify beers as “stuff I like” and “stuff I don’t like”.

Anyway, that’s a little bit about me and my history of beer.

Categories: Information | 2 Comments

Welcome and cheers!

Hi there!

If you are like us, you may have at one time thought that Miller Genuine Draft was exotic .. or that Heineken was a premium import .. or that Guinness was the end all be all of dark beer .. or that Budweiser was great to sit around and enjoy while watching the game.  I think I may have just thrown up a bit.

Okay, sorry.  You may actually still think like this and if you do, I apologize.  Please don’t run away.  We want to open the door on a brand new world for you and open it in a way that is accessible, because this is a place where a few every day guys give every day reviews of non-every day beer.

First off, I blame and thank my friend Ron Pigott for tearing me kicking and screaming from that previous existence.  I in turn brought along another friend or two and on and on we continue .. hopefully we will convert you as well.  Second, beer reviews can be intimidating and confusing .. we don’t want to be that way.  There won’t be specific discussions of high gravity, brewing techniques, mouthfeel, or jargon jargon jargon.  What there will be is easy to understand and relate to reviews of beers we have tried and either liked and want you to try, or thought sucked and want to warn you before you try them!

This is going to be fun and informative.  At least it will be for us!  We hope it will be for you too.  Pull up a chair, kick back, and enjoy!

 

Oh, a quick PS.  We WILL direct you to learn more by checking out excellent websites such as BeerAdvocate where you will find technical reviews and many other opinions in what is referred to by my wife as Beer Snob Land because, well, it’s a great site and eventually you will want to learn more.  But don’t worry about that right now .. now we just want to have fun!

Categories: Information | Leave a comment

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