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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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The Belgian Beer Fest at the Pig
Wednesday, September 17, 2008   12:58 PM

The Muddy Pig had its first annual Belgian Beer Festival this weekend, and Jess and I stopped by for the True Lambics seminar on Saturday. At noon.

(Aside: I don't get why putting cherries in your beer a hundred-odd years ago because you were a cheapass (as we learned) is totally authentic and awesome, but adding some other fruit (like Chapeau's pineapple, or even Miller Chill's lime, if you have my brother's tastes) because it tastes good is a total breach of brewer's etiquette. Maybe this is because I started drinking with Colaweizen — delicious, delicious Colaweizen — but it bothers me when beer snobs go from "there's a lot more to beer than Budweiser" to "Oh no, you can't do that to a beer.")

The tasting itself was a little frustrating. I was still stuffed up and the guy kept talking about how important it was to smell the beer.

I know! I wish I could!

A lot of what he said was familiar, but there was some cool info, e.g. that the cherry pits actually dissolve when you're fermenting this cherry lambic. And (without getting into specifics) we got to try some beers that I guarantee I will never see ever again.

There were a few people (including Jess) who were taking notes, which is #1. pretentious and #2. something I want to do more often. I've got the perfect craft project in mind too.

Anyways, I didn't pay too much attention to beer names, since I wasn't really equipped to adequately taste these beers, but there were a few standouts I'll try to revisit. (Note to self: get the names of those from Jess.)

After trying 13 beers we hung around for a few more hours, talking with Mike and his daughter Jessica, who was intrigued by Jess' Book of Lists. We talked a lot about the beers we were tasting, but there was some interesting conversation too (although "as a libertarian" I'm always very nervous when talking to public schoolteachers).

Mike paid for our beers when he left, which was amazing. Jess and I stayed for a few more rounds and then I drove home to nap and get ready for Graham's b-day party in Minneapolis.

I finally understand the whole "I'm tried from drinking all day" thing.

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With Barry at the Pig
Friday, August 22, 2008   7:23 PM

Work was pretty soul-crushing today, so I was happy to hear back from Barry about getting together. I stopped at his place after work, and one coin flip later we were at the Muddy Pig.

I've got to stop using the booths at that place: both the bar and the outside area are definitely better options. For one, they aren't right next to the men's bathroom.

I started off with a Flat Earth Curly Tail Ale, a nice no-nonsense drinking beer. Originally brewed for St. Paul Saints games, if I'm remembering correctly. Next I had a Heavy Weizen, a so-called "Imperial Unfiltered Wheat Ale" from Southern Tier. It seems like we just started getting Southern Tier beer here in Minnesota, and so far I'm impressed. Someday I'll have that Imperial Cherry Saison that's in the fridge. Maybe tomorrow.

Barry and I both had Furious for the last round. All I caught was the grapefruit aftertaste, which faded by the time I got halfway through the glass. I definitely need to get out the netty pot, because I remember this beer being considerably more complex.

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Wednesday: good beers once more
Wednesday, July 30, 2008   10:16 PM

Tonight for Wednesday happy hour Ben and I went to the Muddy Pig. I started with a Surly Cynic (a nice panic beer if ever there was one) and then, on Ben's recommendation, tried a pint of Tilburg's Dutch Brown Ale.

It was very good, especially for a style that doesn't usually stand out for me, but I'm still surprised to discover that this beer is brewed for export by Koningshoeven, a.k.a. La Trappe, one of the seven Trappist breweries.

For Project Runway we each had a bottle of the Flying Dog Kerberos Tripel. There wasn't much to it that I could tell, but then again there's something going around so my taste buds might be pretty lousy this week. At the very least this was better than when I had it before, poorly paired with a bacon-and-spaghetti dish.

I just remember malty deliciousness. And at 8.5%, Jenna's claim to have gotten drunk off a single sip of it seemed, if not at all plausible, then at least more defensible.

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