Monday, February 28, 2011

Wearin' O' the Green

Damn. I just realized that I missed the Great Guinness Toast this year. What a waste of the Abercrombie and Fitch shirt that I had the collar starched in the "popped" position to wear for the occasion. At least I can go to IHOP for the Great French Toast.
But Guinness is sooo over as the St. Patrick's Day beer. For proof, just look at this Albertson's display, full of the greeny Irish goodness that is...Heineken? I guess if people want to save money on green food coloring, they can drink Heineken out of those green bottles and feel like they are celebrating properly. I don't think the cultures mesh properly. It just doesn't seem right to me...ever try dancing a jig in those wooden shoes? It's not sexy.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Don't Worry, Kiddo...

...that "Bump In the Night" you heard wasn't the unsettling sound of your parents' headboard slamming against the wall. Or...maybe it was. If so, I suggest that since you read about beer you are likely 21, and it is time for you to start looking for your own place. You can still call your parents for rides and money and to get mom to hit the Sonic drive-thru for you so you can have your Ocean Water when you wake up at 3 in the afternoon.

Hopefully, that Bump In the Night was the sound of an empty 22 oz. bottle of Full Sail's latest, a Black IPA, hitting the dumpster behind the apartment complex you moved into after your mom refused to continue slicing bananas over your cereal. "I'm sooo SICK of DAMN bananas!!!", she would exclaim to no one from the doorway upon your departure. This Brewmaster's Reserve release will only be around till March, so save up for the $4.99 if you are into that style IPA. The beer measures 6.5% ABV, 65 IBUs. I first spotted it at Whole Foods on Carlisle. Sleep well.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Jumping on the Bandwagon

...though a headline involving "on the" and "wagon" really don't belong on a site about drinking beer. I lit my own personal wagon on fire and pushed it off a cliff to ensure I will never be back on it.

The Smiths at Carlisle and Constitution is getting in on the make your own six-pack scene. For $8.99, you can choose from four shelves of "Brewmaster's Choice" beers. I imagine the "Brewmaster" at Smiths as either the guy with the hairnet who works in the meat department or the high-school girl bagging with one hand and texting with the other. Who made this sign?? Why, upon further review, it's my buddies who have their tentacles in everything beer-related: Anheuser-Busch InBev! To be fair, I can't bash them for this. It's not like the singles choices are narrowed down to Michelob Amber Bock and Landshark Lager. In fact, only a few beers in the AB In-Bev portfolio are represented among all the choices. It is actually quite a decent selection. You bare paying about a dollar more than you normally would out of convenience, but a six-pack of Modus Hoperandi or Odell IPA (both represented in the section) would cost you even more. So, good for Smiths. I applaud their "Brewmaster".

Friday, February 18, 2011

Bad Ass Brewery Unleashes Beer on Unsuspecting Public

Bad Ass Brewery, located in the strip mall on the southeast corner of Eubank and Montgomery, opened quietly yesterday. Right now they have fourteen beers on tap. You can go visit them from 12-12 today, but you don't have to. It's a free country. They offer these generous tasters (pictured) for $1 apiece so you can really get an idea of what their beers are about without spending too much. They also give out free snacks to wash the beer down with. Enjoy.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?

Time flies when you're getting drunk. I really feel like it was only yesterday that I wrote about Stone's Old Guardian Barleywine release. But no, yesterday I was turning away a promising career so I wouldn't lose my spot on the couch, where the 79 cent frozen burritos are close and the remote control even closer. Today gives me a new chance to screw up, and also gives us the 2011 Stone Old Guardian. This year's recipe is basically the same as last year's (yesterday's), though last year's was dry-hopped with East Kent Goldings hops that gave it more of an English Barleywine twist. There are plenty of high alpha acid Warrior and Columbus hops in this to play off the Maris Otter, English, and American Pale malts. The final result is a 12% ABV, 85 IBU beer that retails for $6.49 per 22 oz. bottle. Stone is also releasing a version of this beer made with a Belgian yeast, so look for that one soon as well. I have only seen the regular version at the Whole Foods on Academy and Wyoming, but it may be at other stores; Whole Foods was the only place I could hitch a ride to. Seems nobody wants to give a ride to a bum and his couch these days.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Gluten For Punishment

I was initially skeptical when I started hearing of all these people starting gluten-free diets. I thought it was just a trend that some rich Santa Fe person who wears a Southwestern jacket that used to be a rug started. But as more and more people claimed the allergy, which even got its own name of Celiac Disease, I came up with the theory that it was an excuse parents used for their kids' bad behavior. I remember my mom putting me on the Feingold diet because I was hyperactive. I guess it worked- and now I can blame her for making me so underactive that I pay my next door neighbor to get my welfare check out of my mailbox and deposit it for me. So maybe there is something to a gluten-free lifestyle. Celiac sufferers at least are starting to get more choices for gluten-free beer. Choices were limited to the InBev brand Redbridge and the expensive Green's out of Belgium, but we now have Boulder, Colorado's New Planet beers on our shelves. Off the Grid IPA is the one that sounds the most interesting, because, well, it's an IPA. They also make a Blonde and a Raspberry Ale. Kelly Liquors at Mountain Run and Whole Foods on Carlisle both have New Planet beers now. I haven't tried any, but only because my reaching stick isn't long enough to get to them. But they sure sound...interesting...who could resist an Off the Grid IPA after seeing the list of ingredients: Sorghum, Brown Rice Extract, Molasses, Tapioca Maltodextrin, Caramel Color, Hops, Yeast...a complete part of this nutritious breakfast!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Sierra Puts Its Best Foot Forward

Well, I made it through the night without losing any fingers or toes to the cold, which means my calculator is still intact. Even with the natural gas shortage, and me a month behind on the bill, the gas company never chose to shut off the heat. That's good, because it allowed me to enjoy the Hoptimum I wrote about yesterday, a beer that was far better than I expected it to be. Today we have another release from Sierra Nevada, but it is one I always expect great things from: Bigfoot Barleywine. This 9.6% annual release is one I look forward to, but I never seem to buy enough. I have previous releases of Bigfoot going back five or six years, though I only have about one or two of each. I can't keep myself from drinking them. The thing about Bigfoot is it is great to drink fresh while the hops really shine through, but it never gets overly sweet as some aged Barleywines tend to. You should be able to find Bigfoot at most any liquor store in Albuquerque (though probably not that Cabana Liquors on Central near Pennsylvania- you're more apt to actually see the real Bigfoot, shooting up while waiting for the bus), and it retails for about $10.99.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

A Hoptimum Time to Conserve Energy

I'm typing this from my car. I'm trying to spend as much time in the car, with the heater running at full blast, in order to conserve gas as per Mayor McCheese's wishes. I may just spend the night in the car as well, because it sounds like this State of Emergency might keep me from having any heat in the house tonight. But don't cry for me, Albuquerque. I have more than the car heater to keep me warm tonight. I also have a bottle of Sierra Nevada's Hoptimum Double IPA to make sure I am entertained throughout the night. I haven't actually tried the beer, so it may seem risky to make a night of this beer. But I've got that figured out too: I'm parked in front of my house, so if I don't like the beer I will just run inside and get something different. The beer sounds promising, though. Hop varieties include Simcoe, Magnum, Chinook, Citra, and "proprietary varieties". Hoptimum tops out at 10.4% ABV and 100 IBUs. The 24 oz. beer retails at $6.99, and Jubilation has them, but they have a limit of 2 per person. Damn, everybody's getting in om this conservation thing. If you're strolling through mu neighborhood tonight, stop by the car and say hi. I've got some Molly Hatchet cassettes, and we can watch reruns of Becker on my Sony Watchman.