Friday, May 15, 2009
Like a Kid in a Candy Store
It's been a long week. I left work early to get a head start on the weekend, and thought I'd stop at Royal on my way home to pick up a little treat. I was thinking maybe a little bottle of something Belgian.
That'll teach me.
Yeah, yeah, you're thinking, "WTF is that Bud Ice doing in there??" Well, as it turns out, ice beers are not just about higher alcohol content (and in fact, some "ice" beers have water added back after the ice is removed). When ice crystals form, they also trap impurities in the beer. The idea is that when the ice is removed, any impurities in the beer are removed along with it. My guess is that this makes for a "smoother" beer, although I'm not sure how much smoother Budweiser is supposed to be. For a couple bucks, I figured it was worth finding out.
I picked up a good mix of 12oz bottles as well; a little something for every mood: Southern Tier phin & matt's extraordinary ale, Schlafly Helles, Sam Adams LongShot Weizenbock, New Holland Full Circle Kölsch, Schlitz Gusto, and Tommyknocker Maple Nut Brown. I'll try to remember to come back and post about my thoughts on each. They're all new for me, except for the Tommyknocker which I already know is delicious.
The story about the Schlitz Gusto comeback is somewhat interesting. You can read a pretty long story about it here, or check out the website or Bull E Vard's blog post about it... I'm drinking it right now and it's not bad. It definitely has a nice bitter aftertaste without being too adjunct-sour. I only recently tried PBR (despite living in Portland during the PBR revival, where you can't go anywhere without seeing a bunch of hipsters clinging to their PBR tallboys) and thought it was pretty damn good - great summer or session beer. Schlitz has more flavor, more bitterness, and is a bit more complex. Aside from the hop bitterness, there's some light malt flavor and roasted corn. Pretty good - try it!
And finally - Boulevard Saison-Brett. Yes, this is the 2009 batch. $12.99 at Royal Liquor on State Line - they have quite a bit of this in stock at the moment.
Really, with a ton of beer already at home, the last thing we needed was more beer. Everything just looked so good....