So, we have pumpkin beer, blueberry beer, apricot, watermelon, raspberry, all kinds of crazy things that drunk brewers can think of. What's left to put in our beer? Why, beets, of course.
Last night, I tried Magic Hat's newest offering: Kerouac, which the menu at Sunset Grille and Tap said was a "beet beer." I asked the bartender what was up with that, and he insisted that it doesn't taste like beets (and thankfully, is not served with beets floating in it like some of those blueberry ones), and it is surprisingly good. He also told me that at $4 a pint for 5.6%, it's a great deal. Being that I had already warmed up with a Golden Monkey and was feeling pretty good, I went for it. Also, I figured it would make for a good post on here.
The Kerouac must be so new, that I couldn't even find anything on their website about it. And Beeradvocate.com had very little info, and even seems to have made an error on the alcohol content (or the Sunset did.) So, you'll have to go on my opinion alone here. Other than the funny pun in the name, I can say that it does not taste like beets. It is quite delicious, in fact. It is pretty dark and reddish, and quite sweet and fruity, which I normally shy away from, but this was really good. I imagined it was loaded with sugar to give it that kick, and my high blood sugar the next morning confirmed it. Oh well. Take the good with the bad, I suppose. Anyway, try the Kerouac if you can find it anywhere.
I was going to leave after that, but two young gentlemen were seated next to me who were obvious rookies, and I got a kick out of them trying to figure out Sunset's huge beer list. Finally, one of them turned to me and asked what was good. I must have looked like an old drunk or something. I suggested the Golden Monkey, of course. It was a few minutes later that he asked me if it was safe to park in the Rite-Aid lot down the street, and I realized he was driving. Whoopsee. After a couple beers they asked if there were any other good bars around (For shame! They were most definitely suburbanites). Even though they were already at one of my favorite haunts, I know it's not for everyone, and it was kind of a meat factory that night, so I suggested Big City or Wonder Bar might be more their speed. I do love poisoning young minds.
Anyway, that was my Saturday. Other than the Golden Monkey and the Kerouac, I tried the Anderson Valley Winter Solstice (quite a kick in that one, too, as it is brewed with caramel and their special holiday spices) and the Mayflower Thanksgiving Ale ('Tis the season, right? Oh, it's always the season for a 7.7%-er) Both were up to my standards, so if you see them anywhere, give them a taste. I imagine the Mayflower won't be around long.
That's all I got today. Hey, be happy that I could remember that much. The best news, I did all that drinking for about $20, plus tip. And that was enough to ensure my holidays will be happy.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Tonight, I felt the first real frigid temperatures of the season while waiting for the bus. I even saw my first puddle turned to ice. It is a bad sign, half-way through November, since we have December, January, February and most of March to go yet. But there is a silver lining in this dark, cold cloud: winter beer.
Winter beer is heartier than other kinds and other seasons. I feel like you can really taste it, not just drink it. Magic Hat has some of my favorite winters, including the Roxy Rolles, a hoppy amber, and Sierra Nevada will soon be releasing their award-winning Celebration Ale, which is my favorite Christmas gift. Even Harpoon Winter Warmer, which isn't hard to find, unless your local liquor store is sold out, like mine was, is much better than the average beer. these go with your traditional holiday foods, too, so fear not. No one will think you strange for drinking them at the table. The Harpoon is better with your desserts, though, apple pies and pumpkin pies and such. And finally, for my favorite beer label ever, the Smuttynose Winter Ale. Another amber, the Smutty Winter is probably the most warming and mellow of the bunch, and at 4.8%, feel free to have a few.
So, get out and enjoy the season, and the seasonals. These are just a few of the good ones, but, hey, we're just warming up. Hopefully.