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This is my personal drinking blog: don't take it too seriously.

Previous Posts

Furthermore: Furthermore
Festival of Hops
Winterfest highlights
A fridge full of New Belgium
Darkness and the last Porterfest
Barry's B-day at the Pig
Happy Hour at the Blue Door Pub
In which sweetness is a weakness
Flat Earth Porterfest: Xanadu

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Barry's B-day at the Pig
Thursday, December 4, 2008   3:18 PM

Went to the Muddy Pig yesterday with Jess, Nick's brother Matt, Nick, Cari, Markie, and Barry's friend Eric for Barry's actual b-day.

It was a fun time, although I have to say that there wasn't much in the way of conversational overlap when it was just Nick, Jess, and Our Bold Hero there: either Nick needs to become a bigger hippie or Jess needs to get into videogames.

I started off with a Pilgrim's Dole from New Holland Brewing, which until just now I thought was a barleywine. Apparently it's a "wheatwine." Here's the style description from Beer Advocate:

A somewhat recent and over-looked American strong ale, the Wheatwine (or Wheat Wine) is akin to a Barleywine in strength, but contains a large portion of wheat malt; upwards of 50%. The wheat provides a soft and fluffy mouthfeel. Color and bitterness varies.

That's about right. I really liked it; the beer was sweet but not cloying, and as you'd expect from the name and the recipe, it had a nice wheaty character to it. I like barleywine and apparently I like wheatwine as well.

My next beer was the Brown Shugga from Beer School–favorite Lagunitas Brewing. This is an American Strong Ale (9.9% ABV — I remember being amused by the almost-10 percentage) and despite the name it wasn't too sweet for me. Again, I liked it.

For whatever reason I had a Summit Great Northern Porter before we left the bar: I've really got to stop wasting money on that third beer.

I think that I can have smoky beers now if they're paired with the right food, and the casked version of this was a favorite of mine at last year's Winterfest, but this isn't something I particularly enjoy on its own.

Barry and I stopped at the liquor store on the way to his place (I had no idea that they closed at 8 Monday through Thursday in St. Paul: we made it with seconds to spare) and he bought some Stella for everyone to drink while we watched Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid at his place. Ah Stella.

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Drinks at the Coworker Cookout
Saturday, June 14, 2008   9:43 AM

My coworker Pete hosted a cookout yesterday, so I brought four beers: a Two Hearted, a Skinny Dip, and two Sierra Nevada Stouts.

I enjoyed the first two, as usual — I think the Skinny Dip may have been more subdued following the Two Hearted — and the Stouts weren't bad. Although as b/4, they weren't really interesting enough for me.

Several of his guests like good beer, and we had a brief conversation about the weirdness of Surly brews (if you don't like one, you can always plausibly claim that you just don't understand it), the upcoming Flying Dog mix-packs, and their fondness for the Flat Earth Black Helicopter, easily (because I hate coffee flavors) my least favorite local beer.

Later on I was offered a Stella Artois and I just couldn't refuse. It's not that Stella is better than the Two Hearted or the Skinny Dip, but on an intellectual level Stella is so interesting — with its references in Achewood, failed British ad campaign, and mysterious choice of green glass for the bottles — that I like it far more than I would an identical beer under a different brand name.

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Tavern on the Avenue
Wednesday, June 4, 2008   6:57 AM

Went to Tavern on the Avenue last night; it's actually a decent place, in the same rough bar genre as Memory Lanes or the V.R. at Lawrence. I started with a Stella Artois that was... not great, for whatever reason. I still had the taste of marrow in my mouth and it's pretty hard for a beer to win in that situation.

Barry and I once again talked about Springboard, though I didn't realize it at the time. (The label has "mountains" and a "glacier")

For the rest of the night I had Leinie's Honey Weiss with a lemon, my basic bar beer. It's not fancy, but it's good stuff.

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