Friday, October 28, 2005

Everybody's Stalking

I tried to take Kunstemaecker's tip, and look for a Boeteling. I mean, a dude in Belgium has access to greater beer than I do in the middle of the middle of the U.S. But alas, all I can find is the reviews posted by other people who happen to live in Belgium. And certainly not anywhere that would ship to the middle of the middle of nowhere. Sorry, Kunst, this is why my beer selections are not always up to snuff. I gotta make do with what I can get my greedy beer paws on myself.

I need a beer mentor, me thinks. Even the pros need someone they can look up to. My friend
AzianBrewer is not around a lot, and while I respect his opinions, I'm just not enough of a sake afficianado to really hang with him. YOU think you got what it takes? Lemme know.

So, I go back to the well. Back to BeerAdvocate. There are many who could be wonderful mentors. There's a dude on that site that actually TEACHES a BEER CLASS at a college. I might email & profess my undying love. Nah. Don't want to scare him off. Instead I'm internet-stalking him. I picked one of his favorite beers as the beer of the week. Is that creepy? Heh. Oh well! Mr. Mystery Beer Man loves Doppel Bocks. And I love Doppel Bocks! Tis fate.

The favorite is Salvator Doppel Bock, brewed by Paulaner-Salvator-Thomasbraeu AG in Germany, and is affiliated with Heineken, which makes distribution a snap. The review says:
Tinged with red and possessed of incredible clarity, the tan head is fed by extremely fine bubbles. This is a well made brew. The sweet scents in the aroma are unbelievable; candy and baked goods, dark berries and plum. Amazingly, the flavor delivers on the aroma. And that happens without overpowering the palate.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Love Letters

Sometimes when I reflect on all the beer I drink, I feel ashamed. Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn't drink this beer, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. I think, "It is better to drink this beer and let their dreams come true than be selfish and worry about my liver."
-- Babe Ruth

An intelligent man is sometimes forced to be drunk to spend time with his fools.
-- Ernest Hemingway

When I read about the evils of drinking, I gave up reading.
-- Paul Hornung

24 hours in a day, 24 beers in a case. Coincidence? I think not.
-- H. L. Mencken

When we drink, we get drunk. When we get drunk, we fall asleep. When we fall asleep, we commit no sin. When we commit no sin, we go to heaven. So, let's all get drunk and go to heaven!
-- George Bernard Shaw

Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.
-- Benjamin Franklin

Without question, the greatest invention in the history of mankind is beer. Oh, I grant you that the wheel was also a fine invention, but the wheel does not go nearly as well with pizza.
-- Dave Barry

Beer: Helping ugly people have sex since 3000 B.C.
-- W. C. Fields

Remember "I" before "E", except in Budweiser.
-- Professor Irwin Corey

To some it's a six-pack, to me it's a "support group." Salvation in a can!
-- Leo Durocher

Friday, October 21, 2005

Let's Go Moon Some Cars

Since it's Friday, and I plan to drink while I watch the Chiefs play tonight and hopefully eat BBQ that we pick up from the joint around the corner, I want a beer that can be drank in copious quantities, and will combat some serious spice. I'm thinking about something just slightly sweet, to kill that sauce burn. It's my beer version of orange or stawberry soda. And I want something familiar, since I do plan to drink more than 3. So today's pick is Pete's Wicked Strawberry Blonde. Shut up with your , "way to pick a girly beer," comments. It's good. It serves a specific purpose. And if you were allowed to come to my house & eat BBQ & watch football, you'd totally try to steal it instead of drinking bottles from the case of Bud Light that's at the bottom of the fridge. I know you!

Pete's Strawberry Blonde is a fruit beer. It will smell and taste faintly of strawberries. The Pete's site calls it a golden lager made of the finest pale and wheat malts and Cluster Hops, with a kiss of natural strawberry flavor. BeerAdvocate reviewers say things like:

Light bodied, Clear gold with only a slight hint of pink and a moderate head that produces a bit of lace.
The aroma is light malt and a nice strawberry.
Mild malt flavor with an overtone of strawberry..Strawberry flavor is definite but subtle enough to be enjoyed without being overdone. Mild hops flavor, well balanced. Very good for a fruit flavored beer. Drinkable and refreshing

That's high praise from a beer snob!

Friday, October 14, 2005

Do It Again

More pumpkin flavored beer? What the hell? I thought true beer fans don’t like fruit or veggie flavored beers? Yeah, well, this is a special occasion. I ordered this online, specifically after last week’s Beer Friday. So not only was it a special order, it was highly anticipated, which always makes everything better.

If you don’t like it, I don’t care. And besides, you know that in back of my fridge, behind the pitcher of OJ and the Country Crock, there are always bottles of Bud Light or Miller Lite. For when you need to drink for the alcoholic content, and not so much for the taste. Although when it gets to that point, I usually will point you in the direction of the 1.75 liter bottles of vodka or rum to do that job.

Back to the beer. I got it. My big FedEx’d box of Punkin’ Ale from the Dogfish Head Brewery in Delaware. I proudly carried it home, and lovingly put each of the 6 bottles in the fridge. After a couple of hours, The Husband & I decided to start our punkin adventure. We opened the bottles and poured them into cold pint glasses. This is the first time we realized there might be a slight problem with consistency. My glass filled up with a gorgeous, reddish amber beer and formed a creamy, foamy head more than
an inch thick. The Husband’s glass filled up with the same color liquid, but totally missed any head on his beer. Mine smelled a bit more like nutmeg and cinnamon than his did, and as far as taste, his glass definitely fell flat. We shared the 2 glasses, and went for a 2nd go round, with new glasses, just in case. Same thing happened, one was great, one fell flat.

The great glass of beer looked beautiful, smelled delicious, and while it is definitely a clear beer, without any cloudiness, it feels substantial and almost creamy when you drink it. Almost like you are drinking the essence of pumpkin pie. It’s not cloying, or sweet, but it feels like fall, with a little snap and bite while making you feel all cozy inside. There is a malt base which comes out along with brown sugar, and a little pumpkin. I enjoyed it very much. If they can work on their consistency, in either the brewing process between batches, or maybe just while bottling, this would be a great beer, all of the time.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

The Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead

My Punkin Ale from Dogfish Head Brewery arrived today. I knew it because the mail guy told me I had a package, and someone over 21 had to sign for it. Happy happy dance! Punkin Ale will be consumed tonight. Sweet. 7% Alc. by Vol. Oooh, drunken Thursday? No, I should go easy tonight. I've only been back in reality for one day.

I'll report back in detail tomorrow. Because tomorrow is already Beer Friday!

Friday, October 07, 2005

Make It Last

Fall is HERE, baby. I thought that I should dig up an old friend - a nice, fall-like beer for today. I’ll be serving pumpkin beer this fine Friday.

Yes, I said pumpkin. It’s ok, don’t panic. Have I ever lead you astray before? (No, don't answer that, I remember the unfortunate
rum punch episode.) Just trust me this once, grab your kool-aid & follow me.

I would really like to serve this beer. I haven't tried it yet, but I just ordered some online. Can I just say that I love the internet? Anyway, Punkin' Ale, which just sounds cool, is described as a full-bodied, spiced brown ale brewed with real pumpkins, cinnamon, nutmeg, and brown sugar. Dogfish Head Punkin' Ale is named after the annual Punkin' Chunkin Festival held near Lewes, Delaware the weekend after Halloween.

I don't live near the Punkin Chunkin Festival grounds. I live a lot closer to the middle of nowhere than Delaware. (Although I suppose saying the Delaware is somewhere could be argued as well.) Lucky for me, there is a brewery called the O’Fallon Brewery, located in O’Fallon, MO. That’s sort of near St. Louis, for those who are wondering, and their beer is distributed in my city. Their site is pretty rudimentary, so we won’t link to it. But they don’t lose points for that, because when your business is beer, and you make good beer, I’m willing to overlook poor web design. They make a seasonal Pumpkin Ale, released each year on Sept. 1. Feel free to check out the reviews at . One such review states:

it's lightly cloudy with a weak head, but the color holds a bit of the orange glow, so the appearance mustered up an average rating. sweet aroma with hints of clove and solid cinnamon: nice. the flavor is a great balance of sweetness and a dose of the requisite spices; not overdone as some brewers have the tendency to do. clean finish with lingering pumpkin flavor and cinnamon. a proper pumpkin beer if ever there were one. recommended.

I hope you like it. If you drink too much, you might do something stupid, worse, make yourself sick.