Art Vandelay wrote:Sierra Nevada has some good beers, but god...their Pale Ale is horrible. I used to live near Chico, CA, where it's brewed, and that's the ONLY beer anyone ever drank there when I used to go to parties and bars. Horrible beer. But I seem to be the only person who thinks that way.
Well, take comfort in knowing that I too do not like Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.
I'm on a college budget, but for my birthday my friends went out and bought about 20 different kind of beers. Pyramid Hefe, Blue Moon, and Fat Tire won me over. Haven't delved too much into other beers yet, but I'm definitely interested in knowing which beers to try.
This makes sense... a lot of people don't care for Pale Ale and that's understandable; I used to hate them in fact and it really took some doing for them to win me over. They're very hoppy and a little bitter; some people describe them as tasting like pine cones. I hated Sierra Nevada Pale Ale too, but ever since my own beer quest started 8 months ago, I've had so much beer, I'm starting to develop an appreciation for each style. A lot of beer people love Russian Imperial Stouts, but they're still growing on me.
Marver, it sounds like you're a big fan of the wheat beer (witbiers, weizens and white ales). Pyramid I believe makes all weizens and blue moon is a great witbier "starter." I say that because it's one of the more widely available unique styles out there, mainly because Coors bought Blue Moon a few years ago... but don't let that deter you, Blue Moon is awesome! Nonetheless, i've converted some miller-lite-only drinkers to micros starting with blue moon. But you have to play to people's tastes and a lot of people understandably don't care for pale ales and IPA's.
Plus, with wheat beers, many bars throw in a lemon or oragne slice; some beer snobs reject this because it "affects the head" but come on, I think it's unique.
Fat Tire is an Amber Ale which is always a great style to go with.
And a note on 90 Minute IPA... that is a complex beer, any beer that is over 7% usually is and can be a tough sell. It's one of my personal favorites and personally I think the 90 Min goes great with food, especially spicy food or BBQ.
What's great about beer though is that there's a style out there for everyone.
Phatferd, I sent you a PM about the beer spreadsheet.
As for last night, i tried a few new beers.
A local bar had Hoegaarden White on-tap... it's a true Belgian witbier and it was so light colored and cloudy, it was almost white... very unusual and citrusy. I liked it.
I also got to try my first cask-conditioned ale!
Cask-conditioned beer, often referred to as 'real ale', is brewed from only traditional ingredients and allowed to mature naturally.
The unfiltered, unpasteurised beer still contains live yeast, which continues conditioning the beer in the cask (known as 'secondary fermentation'); this process creates a gentle, natural CO2 carbonation and allows malt and hop flavours to develop, resulting in a richer tasting drink with more character than standard keg ('brewery-conditioned') beers.
Real ale is always served without any extraneous gas, usually by manually pulling it up from the cellar with a handpump (also known as a 'beer engine'). This is the traditional way of brewing and serving beer; only a few decades ago did filtered, pasteurised, chilled beer served by gas become normal.
The only place in the world where cask-conditioned beer is still commonly available is Britain.
A local bar has a cask-conditioned beer available every month, and this month is was the local favorite from Harrisburg Troeg's Hopback Ale. It was literally hand pumped into the glass and very foamy. The texture of the beer itself was completely different than the same version of this beer I've had from a bottle. It's also served "warm" or about 48 degrees to be exact. If you find cask conditioned beer on tap somewhere, give it a try!
If you're a battery, you're either working or you're dead....