Thursday, May 1, 2008

Crappy Beers

Last night went to Buffalo Wild Wings to watch the Cubs (as kriddy hasn't much food in her place and I don't either, oh and I don't have cable) beat the crap outta the Brewers. They have a decent beer selection, but they just got in the Cubs Old Style bottles, so I drank those.

To us... um... beer snobs, Old Style is a fizzy yellow piss beer. Old Style is very refreshing, it's not horrible to taste, but it's a low brow beer. It is in the same category as Hamms, PBR, Strohs, Old Milwaukee... the list goes on... and on... and on... Oddly most of those cheap beers are made by Pabst.

Sometimes I enjoy the low brow beers, they are often harder to find than the mid-range "craft" beers. Around central Illinois, most bars have a version of Sierra Nevada on draft. Killians is ubiquitous. Stella Artois has weaseled it's way onto taps throughout town. Newcastle, Hoegaarden, Bass, and Guinness draft and bottles are in most bars. But if you really want to have a beer at a place, I think you need to try the "crappiest" beer there.

In Champaign Urbana, you can get Hamms at D.R. Diggers; Strohs at Esquire Lounge; Schlitz at the Brass Rail. Natural Light is available at Billy Barooz (thank you Illinois head football coach Ron Zook). You used to be able to get Lone Star at the Rose Bowl. There's no shortage of these beers in town, and you can pretty much drink all you want for about $10 a night.

If I go over to someone's house when they open the fridge and offer me a beer, I'd rather have one of these crappy beers than a Miller or Bud product. Normally there's a can of Stroh's or PBR hiding back behind the pickles. Or it might be waiting for them to use in a beer bread or in a soup; they won't waste a Bud light in beer bread, but Old Milwaukee is perfectly acceptable for that.

I don't drink these all the time, but they are a nice palate cleanser in between other beers, normally.

(This was originally going to be about pairing beer with hot wings, but I got side tracked)

So as I'm sitting there enjoying the shellacking the cubs are putting on the brewers, there's a guy behind us who is REALLY loud. I think he had 3 different beers during the night and was trying to impress his date with his beer knowledge. I didn't want to say anything to him except to shut up (he was really loud). I'm not sure what all he had to drink, but the last thing he ordered was "that Leinenkugel sun thing, you know the one that comes with an orange". To which the server asked "sunset wheat?" and the guy replied (loudly) "yeah that's it". He then went on to extol the virtues of this beer, that he couldn't remember the name of. He talked about how light and refreshing it was. I thought to myself, if you want a light refreshing Leinenkugel, drink a Summer Shandy. I thought to myself, this guy knows nothing about beer, he's just obnoxious, that's not REAL beer... then I looked down at my table and saw the empty bottles of Old Style...


DidJuno said...

Place in Cbus has Schlitz, Blatz, Black Label and Stag on draft. They have 50c draft night on Tuesdays I think.

Chipper (Dave) said...

Are you a bottle collector? Wonder if those Cubs bottles are limited editions. You may have wanted to save one of those bottles for old time sake.

vgrid said...

Oh yeah, I collect bottles. I've got all the bottles that I drank at home last year (except for a grolsch light) in one of my spare rooms.

All the bottles have a different story on the back. We had 5 and each bottle had a story. We asked for a to go bag and took them home. Apparently a couple of them had some beer left in them, because the bottom of the bag was wet. It had that smell of old stale beer that we all know from our younger days. These bottles will probably go into kriddy's cubs shrine.

Bryon said...

There's a place in Hartford, CT that had a cheap beer night during the week. The special was only good for the kind of beers you were blogging about. And they served them straight out of a can, which they served in a small brown paper bag. Kind of a gimmick for the college kids or something.

Side Bar, I had a PBR (out of a bottle) at Eli Cannon's in Middletown, CT last summer and I actually enjoyed it...