Wednesday, May 21, 2008

kwak kwak waddle waddle

We are wipper snappers...

Last night, had 3 new beers, happily they went from good to not as good. (Yeah, when was the last time I said a beer was bad?)

Started out the evening with a Duck Rabbit Rabid Duck Russian Imperial Stout. This was an AWESOME beer. It's got an A- rating on BA, (I looked this morning after I drank it, don't want to be a bandwagon person; I liked it before I knew everyone else liked it.)

It poured like black oil. That picture isn't poorly lit, that shit is BLACK! It had brown thin foam, totally a different color than the beer. I held my glass up to a light (and granted it was a big goblet) but absolutely NO LIGHT shone through. There were no bright patches where even a glimmer of light made it through. This shit absorbed light.

It smelled like coffee and chocolate and black olives with a hint of smoke or even a burned smell. This stuff was thick! It wasn't Dark Lord thick, but it is definitely (why do I always spell that word wrong) a thick ass stout. When I went to take my first sip, as my lip pressed against the beer, it had resistance. This beer had SURFACE TENSION; water bugs would have no problem walking across this thing. Jesus could have easily walked across this; and Moses would have had trouble parting it. I pressed through to get to the beer. This stuff completely coated the mouth, it didn't lift off either. It was slightly gritty, but not horrible. It's a thick beer.

It had the slight taste of Black Chocolate, possibly bakers chocolate, the bitter, not sweet stuff. There was a little bit of grape/raisin to it, but not a lot. It finished with a coffee or espresso feel. I also got the sense of a nut, a dark nut, maybe Brazil nuts? This beer was awesome. At around $12 a 6 pack, this is probably the best $2 beer I've ever had. If you can find it, get it, you won't be disappointed.

After drinking this (Kriddy had a BBC stout), we went to hooters for trivia.
(that's not me in the picture)

Yeah, I know all those girls. Trivia was Scary Movies, we won. While there, I had a Boulevard Pale followed by a Killians. After trivia, we went to 7 Saints to drop off the 6 pack for Chibuisi. He had mentioned before that he tried a Bells so I put together a pack for him. It had the Cherry, Expedition, Best Brown, Third Coast, Amber and Pale; so a nice little pack. Andy showed up and gave me $100 for the Darklord and other beers, and looked at the pack and was a little jealous I think. But then after thinking about it, he felt a little bad for improving his cellar at my beer's expense. While at 7S, I had a Flying Dog Rabid Dog IPA, followed by Dark Horse Black bier, then went home.

Got home and poured myself a Pauwel Kwak. The picture doesn't do it justice (well maybe the globe on the bottom does). It was a lovely amber color, almost reddish, like a killians. It smelled like an amber, with a little bit more banana in the nose. The head was almost too big (and then I ruined it), but it still stuck around. It was somewhat thin, and felt... um... clean. It didn't have much carbonation in the mouth feel, despite all that head.

It had a nutty and fruity taste. Not and amber flavor. It was definitely Belgian yeast, giving off that fruity taste in an amber colored beer. There was thin hops and a big malt presence. It finished clean, with a pleasant aftertaste that hung longer in the mouth thicker than I expected for as thin as it felt initially.

I'm not sure if the glass part is supposed to come out of the wood, because mine seemed wedged in there pretty good. So I left it in, and used it as a stein. I killed the head with one of the ways you can easily do to get the head smaller in a beer. If you have run away foam in a glass, you can get rid of it simply by rubbing your finger against the side (outside) of your nose and then touching the foam with your finger tip. The oils in your sweat will cause the bubbles to dissipate. It's on wikipedia in the article on NOSE GREASE.
Nose grease has mild antifoaming properties and can be used to break down a high head on freshly poured beer or soft drinks. Wiping nose grease onto one's finger and then touching or stirring the foam causes it to dissipate rapidly

Last was the Hitachino Nest Sweet Stout. I've not been a fan of the other Hicachino's that I've had, but I tried to go in with an open mind. Well, it was 1130 or so, and I'd already had 6 beers, so how close minded could I be?

It poured black, with thin whitish foam that didn't stick around too long. It smelled peppery with a little grape and alcohol. It felt thin (not thin compared to the Duck Rabbit, thin compared to other stouts).

My first reaction to the taste was... WOW.

It was black olive, strong black olive. There might have been a little green olive thrown in, but there was definitely (yay, I spelled it right without spell check) no pimento. (As I wrote it out last night, I put "no red thingies"). There was a little grape flavor but that mostly came from the smell. I didn't get any smoke, chocolate, vanilla or coffee flavor. It was slightly salty and definitely (damn, spelled it wrong again!) not sweet, despite the sweet stout name. Most of the flavor came late, and hit the back sides of the tongue. Eventually it reached the tip of the tongue, but that was really late. After letting it sit, it dried out my mouth, almost like a white wine.

I didn't notice until this morning that the label says "Lacto" so it's a milk stout. I didn't taste the sweetness, but this morning, as I'm lactose intolerant, I definitely noticed the lactose. (I'll let you figure out what I mean by that.)

This morning my feelings on the beer are different than how much I seemed to enjoy it last night. I like beers that remind me of black olives. (I picked up all these beers in Asheville)

I forgot to mention a funny thing that happened to us in Asheville. On Saturday as we were heading out to go on the Brews Cruise, Frank checked the mail, there was a letter from his mom. They knew we were heading down, so she had clipped an article in their local paper (wisconsin rapids, I think) on beer, and sent it down to them to give to me. The letter said something like...

Thanks for everything, we had a good time at the wedding and reception...
If Virgil hasn't made it down there, we saw this in the paper and thought of him.

That's really nice, especially considering I've only met them 3 times, first at Franks 30'th birthday party, second at the bride/groom couples shower, and finally at the reception.

So a shoutout to Frank's Mom.

Congratulations go to Jim (from 7 Saints) who got a job up in Chicago for a beer distributor. He'll be working with some great beers, and maybe someday he might be able to get text messages on his phone.

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