Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Beer: Weekend Update

Did everybody have a fun Memorial Day weekend?! Whether you were at the track or out at parties and barbecues, it was hard NOT to find something to do. We didn't go to the Indy 500 this weekend, but we did host a couple of people that were going to the race. They were from Michigan and brought some local libations: a bottle of Michigan wine and 6 packs of Bell's Oberon and Arcadia IPA. They sure know how to thank us right! I've seen but never purchased the Arcadia IPA and this was the first Oberon of the season for us. The Oberon was delicious while barbecuing outside on that gorgeous Sunday afternoon.

Yesterday, we tried to get out and do some shopping. We struck out left and right with stores closed for the holiday -- Costco closed on Memorial Day...really?! -- but we lucked out and Hot Shotz was open. We've been barraged with people telling us we HAVE TO CHECK OUT HOT SHOTZ. It was just as good as promised and we even got to meet the beer guru there, Hans. He said they almost didn't open at all yesterday and were likely to close early. We really did luck out, as we were the only people in the place the entire time we were there.

Hans mentioned that he's toying with the idea of hosting a beer and wine pairing dinner at some point in the future, so that's something to keep an eye on. He also recommended that we check out the beer selection at the Crown Liquor store at 31 and Carmel Dr. Coming from downtown, that's a bit far for us to go on a regular basis, but since we were already at 96th St, we decided to head up there to see the selection. I wouldn't say the selection is as wide as Kahn's or Parti Pak, our regular beer shopping locations, but there were quite a few things there that I haven't seen anywhere else (or had never pulled the trigger on). I ended up walking out with a mixed 6 pack containing:

Jolly Pumpkin Bam Noire
Dark Horse Double Crooked Tree IPA
Dark Horse Plead the Fifth (Imperial Stout)
Mad River John Barleycorn Barleywine
Goose Island Demolition
Hofbräuhaus Münchner Kindl Weissbier

Plus a large bottle of Brooklyn Local 1.

We popped the Bam Noire last night. BAM is right -- that beer has quite the sour punch! Does Jolly Pumpkin make anything that isn't tongue-curlingly sour? We tried their Calabaza Blanca a while back and thought the sour was way over the top. I'm really trying to give sour beers a chance, but I'm not really inclined to try much else from Jolly Pumpkin, especially given how damn expensive they are. Most of their beers are sold as 750ml bottles for well over $10, though thankfully the Bam Noire was just a single 12oz bottle for about $3.50. Maybe sour beers just aren't for me. . . .


Jessica said...

We also ran into the problem of Costco being closed yesterday. Seriously, who would have thought?

Jim said...

A sour beer that you might like is Cantillon Kriek. It's a lambic, but the sourness is well-balanced with the infusion of the cherries. It's not sweet like a Lindemans.

Erik Huntoon said...

You found Double Crooked Tree??!!?? Lucky bastich :-) I will have to go on the prowl for that as it is a rare find indeed. All in all, I have always enjoyed the Jolly Pumpkin beers I have tried and have not found them overly sour, but that could easily be a case of trying different beers then you have had. One I have had a couple times was actually very reminiscent of a reisling wine in my opinion.

As to another sour beer to try.. Duchesse de Bourgogne is a beauty. Not overly sour that has a mild hint of cherry even though there is no cherries added in the brewing process. One of the very best I think.

CorrND said...

Thanks for the recommendations guys! I'll give those a whirl sometime.

And regarding the Double Crooked Tree, they've actually got a lot of it up at that Crown store: a couple 4 packs on the shelves and several more in the cooler. I was tempted to buy a whole 4 pack ($14) but wanted to try other things while keeping my expense under control. I decided a mixed pack was the way to go and just took one bottle.

They've also got Pannepot and Stuiselensis from Struise, as well as the whole lineup of Mikkeller, if any of that is a draw. And very, very, very shhhhhh.....they apparently have a couple bottles of a very "powerful", very "dark" beer from Munster, IN for sale in the back.

Jim said...

Chris, does that Crown store have Mikkeller's Beer Geek Breakfast?

If you don't care for sour beers, then you're going to have a hard time with the Struiselensis. I loved it, but it is pretty damn sour.

CorrND said...

Sorry, maybe I shouldn't have said "full line." It looked like they had all the Mikkeller that you guys reviewed recently.

However, Hans said to look for Beer Geek Breakfast around Indianapolis later this week. It arrived to the warehouse late last week and will be distributed this week.

I picked up a couple bottles of Pannepot at Kahn's last week and stayed away from the Struiselensis for exactly that reason. The word "sour" in the description scared me away!