Tuesday, April 19, 2016

There's Waldos'

Waldos' Special Ale is so named for the Waldos, a group who would meet at 4:20 daily in search of a secret garden said to be near Point Reyes. As you can guess by the time, they may have been partaking in a semi-legal substance to enhance their mood during the quest. Waldos' Special Ale may not have the same medicinal properties as the unnamed other, but Lagunitas promises it to be the "dankest and hoppiest" beer they ever created. Over 5 lbs. of hops per barrel were used to make the beer, and it certainly comes through in the initial smell, something I have found to be lacking in many of the Lagunitas offerings. And the taste comes through just as strong, with tropical juice dominating the taste. The 100 IBUs, which barely meets the minimum standard for the average craft beer drinker nowadays, are hard to detect, showing once again why IBU count may be the most useless stat when it comes to tasting a beer (besides maybe SRM). The alcohol is present but nowhere near overpowering, especially considering the fact that the beer is 11.5% ABV. And that is my one complaint with Waldos'; I want to drink more than one of these delicious beers in a sitting but I know the next day I'll be paying for it. That fact notwithstanding, I think this is one of the best Double IPA releases this year and a steal at $11-$12 a six-pack! And while finding Waldo may be a craze that has passed, except in Halloween outfits, 3-D magic puzzles are making a comeback (as soon as we get tired of adult coloring books).
To paraphrase Jay in Mallrats, "What you need is a Waldos' Special Ale and I guarantee you'll be seeing a sailboat, an ocean, and maybe some-"...you know the rest of that line. Hopefully.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Let's Get 3 Tart-ed in Here

With many apologies to Angelo Orona, here finally is my short, swwweeettt write-up of Tart at Heart 2, or as Angelo originally told me, Tart at Heart 3...which led me to that headline. When Angelo later corrected himself, it was too late. The wheels had already been set in motion so the headline stays, and will be just perfect for next year's event! At one point, it felt like it was going to be next year before I got around to writing about Tart at Heart. I was planning on doing it, but went off to New York on a whim. After getting tired of paying $8 for an 8 oz. pour of beer, I came back, ready to write. So, hopefully there are still tickets available. And it's not like Angelo and Kevin McCallister (co-organizer) haven't been getting plenty of press on the event. I even saw a full-page writeup in the Venue section of the Journal about it. So I'll just give my quick rundown: $45 tickets may remain (VIP sold out early), admission at 2 at Sister. Event runs till 6, but feel free to stay until they start charging a cover for a band you don't care about. Fun fact: I once paid a $5 cover there because I was in the mood for the Project Dank they had on tap. It was world music night. Fastest I ever pounded a Dank. Unlimited tastings this year, folks, so be sure to Uber or ride that bike. 10-12 beers are exclusive to the fest or making their debut there- nice work procuring those rare kegs, guys. And portions of the proceeds benefit the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, so it's not like these guys are out to make a killing off you- they're just two guys who are serious about good beer and want to share it with you. I'll gladly take some barrel-aged Narwahl from Sierra Nevada (seen that on tap in NM ever? Nope!), or some New Belgium Oscar Single Foeder Sour, from their Love series (first time a Love beer has made it to a NM bar). Laguntias makes a surprise visit to the sour side with a sour wheat ale, which, of course, they dry hopped. Local breweries are represented, with the last keg of Cumbre's Apricot Saison, Marble's Saison Brux, Boxing Bear's Black and Blue Tart, Ponderosa's Berlinerweisse, and Blue Corn's Braggot aged in Santa Fe Spirits apple brandy barrels w/ local apricots and brett all representing. Get your last minute tickets at Jubilation, Kelly Liquors on Juan Tabo, and Sister.