Friday, July 18, 2014

Hitachino Nest Real Ginger Brew

This was surprisingly excellent! Perhaps I am too suspicious when I see on a label that fruits or flowers, vegetables or spices have been added to the beer. It usually makes me suspect they are just trying to cover up the taste of beer so as not to offend those with weak senses. But this Japanese brewery has added a little extra to a good beer and produced something fun and flavorful. There's a strong foundation of caramel malt and mild hops. The ginger is noticeable but not overpowering, adding pleasant spicy notes to the beer’s smooth harmony.

As of today there is a broader selection of ingredients I could find in my beer, and still be happy.  As they sang in the beer halls in colonial America:
            “If barley be wanted to make into malt,
            We must be content and think it no fault,
            For we can make liquor to sweeten our lips,
            Of pumpkins and parsnips and walnut tree chips.”

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Dundee Kolsch-Style Ale

These lazy dog days of summer allow me time this afternoon with little else to do than read on the deck. Bob Vander Plaats' book is accompanied by this refreshing, German-styled ale. There is a tartness to the flavor that reminds me of apple cider. I am no expert on Kolsch, but maybe it's not supposed to be so cidery. Overall, the happy dog server on the label convinces me to overlook any slight flaws.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Cane and Ebel

I am thankful that my employer provides me and my family with health insurance. The organization they've chosen to provide this insurance, however, is manipulative and ornery, forcing me to go see the doctor even when I am not sick. Today I had the uncomfortable experience of going into the clinic for a mandated checkup. I felt as though I needed to try to come up with some reason why I wanted my good Doctor to check me over, look in my ears and into throat as I said "Aaaahhh!" As it turned out, I'm fine. Doc tells me my cholesterol  is 186, my TRG is 136 and my blood pressure, pulse, and HDL are each some other seemingly random and unexciting numbers. So, cheers to my good health!

To toast my well being, I opened this Red Rye Ale . It was nice, sweet and tangy, adding yet more reasons for me to be glad to be alive. It appears as though I have some more days to live here on earth, to serve my Lord and my neighbor and to be served by good neighbors at Two Brothers Brewing, Warrenville, Illinois.


Sunday, July 13, 2014

Dundee Iowa Pale Ale

We had a memorable, fun day at Cedar Point. Our whole family was together along with Sandy’s sister’s family. We rode all the rides, took in a couple shows, and enjoyed the beautiful weather for a family outing.

Beer inside the park is limited to three varieties of American Light beer. They wanted $9.95 for a plastic cup of the stuff, so I could easily pass it by, knowing that the next offering from the Dundee sample pack was chilling in my brother-in-law’s fridge.

This IPA had interesting floral and piney hop flavor, balanced well with dark copper malt that made it overall, a very refreshing end to a very wonderful day.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Dos Equis Azul

In Ft. Wayne we picked up a pack of Mexican beer and a lime at a market a couple of blocks from the hotel. Away from home, we didn't have all the conveniences of our own kitchen. Scratching our heads we searched our room, luggage and car for a knife with which to slice the lime. But we got nothing.

Pictured here Cameron is working on our ultimate solution, successfully slicing the lime with the license plate from the rear of the Suburban. Our beers are about to be garnished with these rough hewn slices.
As it turns out, Dos Equis Azul is sweet, flavorful and refreshing, with agave nectar and other additives; it doesn't really even need a lime.

Dundee Pale Bock

At Aaron and Niki Koch's wedding I'm enjoying a bock as the happy couple dances in the background. Groomsman Nathan Harms also gets in the shot while Caleb Koch was asking "Wait. Do you want me in the picture?"

Dundee's Bock has malt sweetness and a strong alcohol flavor. I'd drink it again but the winner in the Dundee sampler pack so far was the Stout we had yesterday.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Dundee Stout

Gathering as a family together in Ft Wayne to attend a wedding here tomorrow, we're sitting around drinking a sampling of beers from Dundee Brewing Company in Rochester,  New York. The Stout was excellent--dark and drinkable as the label promises.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Blue Moon Summer Honey Wheat

This Sunday is craft and hobby day at our house.  The women and our youngest visitor work on a designed T-Shirt. My friend Aidan (see the entry on Bitburger.) and I worked on getting our fishing poles ready for an outing tomorrow. And I worked a little more on my beer book.

Blue Moon Summer HoneyWheat shows what good things honey can do to a beer.  When you first hear the words honey beer, it may sound like something so thick and sticky sweet that it’s hard to swallow. But in reality, the simple sugars of the honey work with the yeast to make the beer light and crisp, an excellent example of which is this Summer Honey Wheat.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Schell's 30th Anniversary Pilsner Beer Series #2

Happy Independence Day!

Today is the top beer-selling holiday in America. Together as a nation we will spend over $1 billion on beer over the course of this three day weekend.

My beer for the day was a good old fashioned American pilsner, (heavily influenced by German brewing method and tradition).

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Horizon Red IPA

Horizon Red IPA has some of the piney hop flavor I enjoyed so much in Summit’s Extra Pale Ale, combined with the richer malt flavor and deeper color of an amber ale.

I enjoyed this Horizon with my buddy, Moses, while he enjoyed a snack of “Brew Buddies”. These come in a package intended to catch the eye of the beer drinking dog buddy.  Quoting from the bag:  “Share the moment.  Made with Malted Barley just like in your beer.”