Friday, December 12, 2008

I'm amazed I'm not mostly beer

At one sorry, ridiculous phase in my life, I didn't like beer (gasp!). Now, it's pretty much my beverage of choice. I like a lot of different beers, and I like to drink them often. (Side note: I have this pet peeve about the word "often." Most linguists agree that the "t" is silent, but cultural anthropologists believe that language itself is an evolving organism, and that as cultures change and adapt to saying things or using words in different ways, that the "old" way of saying or using words becomes irrelevant. This annoys me greatly because I ascribe to the notion that "THE 'T' IN 'OFTEN' IS FUCKING SILENT!" /rant)

So, lately I've been imbibing off-in. (see what I did there?) I wanted to make a list of some really awesome beers and some very, shall we say, different, ones lately. Here are a few notable drinkables:

Blue Moon's "Harvest Moon Pumpkin Ale" from their Seasonal Collection is a winner on all fronts. It's not filling and has a great balance on the palate and leaves no stale aftertaste, which is a problem for most ales. It's full bodied, though, with a citrus-y tinge and a real satisfying finish. This is in a tie for No. 1 with...

Samuel Adams "Octoberfest." It's no secret that I love Sam Adams beers. They are superb on many fronts, but the octoberfest was so interesting with spicy notes and a lot of character that I'd drink it again in a heartbeat.

The dark horse, though (and I'm not always a fan of their beers, but I'll drink them in a pinch) was Shiner "Bohemian Black Lager." I was amazed at the smooth finish and malty taste, and it has totally made me a convert. If you think Guinness is a good, dark brew, you need to try Shiner Black. With my standard pour in a pint glass, there really wasn't as much head as I would expect from a dark, malty beer, but it's still delicious.

I've sampled others, more boutique-styled Belgian brews, but that's another post entirely.

And here is the miss:

Shiner "Holiday Cheer" is so... odd. I see what they were going for, but they overdid it. It's supposed to be smooth and even, but the moment you take a sip the peach is overpowering. It was like drinking Shiner Bock mixed with peach Boones Farm. It was beer, but it's not something I'd recommend for your average swiller.

My standby: Samuel Adams Light is a beer that fits all occaisions. It's not filling but hits the spot when you're looking for a balanced, mildly hoppy brew. I love it. Hell, I'm in love with it!


Anonymous said...

In yank speak, you might be right but in good ol' British English (you know, the version of English that is spoken by the English and therefore the definitive version) the t is very much spoken.

I spend hours every day having to correct users of English as their second language that they should get these things right otherwise they are speaking American, not English.

I know that it's our own fault for leaving you with our language and not helping you keep up with how we have evolved it, but please, try and catch up now...

Jeez! ;-)

Anonymous said...

oh my word. what i wouldnt give to drink some shiner right now. i mean, i cant complain because i live in the land of beer goodness, but there is nothing like shiner.

Jo said...

Whatever, Fam! But whet about the beer?

Olivia said...

I'm out of this discussion since I can't stand beer. Too bitter for me.

But if I did like it, I'd probably go for Weissbier.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, Missy D but I on't drink beer. :-( A nice shandy from time to time, but I've tried all the beers that I can find and none of them seemed worth the effort. Some of the odd local bitters were OK but not worth turning my life into the standard "going to the pub every evening" since they are only available on draft. That would be horrid. I'm just not that socialable anyway... ;-)

Not keen on wine either, so I'm sorry, but on this topic, I'm a lost cause.

I can't knit either.

But I do enjoy your blog. Must be the dogs and the chickens. :-)

The Ex said...

Have you tried the Summer Ale from Sam Adams? HEAVEN IN A BOTTLE.

And I'm an atheist. So yeah.

Jo said...

The Ex: I do love the Summer Ale from Sam Adams. It's so light and citrusy without losing the character of a hearty brew. MMMM... Goes good with a thin slice of orange or lemon!

MattJ said...

Ah! beer! How the hell did I muiss this one?!

But first - often. Both of you are wrong because both of you are right, there isn't a hard and fast linguistic rule about the T in often. Here it'll be down to regional dialect. I use both forms depending on what i am saying an how I am saying it.

Now, beer. American beer was a pleasant surprise to me, a lot of it was kind of like what a pint of half lager/half ale tastes like. (Sometimes referred to as a pint of chinese for some bizarre reason).

I did leave Amercia quite pissed off because the beer you send over here is evidently the shit! lol! (and not ina good way!)

I quite liked Sam Adams (I forget which i had) but I mostly liked the microbreweey stuff I tried in Pittsburgh.

of particular note was the restaurant that was inside a converted church, and where the altar once was - a Brewery! piping beer straight to the bar! Oh the tears in my eyes!

however. your comment jo. Fruit has no place in beer unless you are making mulled cider.

Anonymous said...


I ascribe to *your* version of the word "often" = "offen" even though I am English.

My reasoning is to do with Shorthand and when I was teaching my shorthand students how to shorten words they are quicker to write WITHOUT silent letters -- therefore if we treat the word "offen" as "offen" we have less letters to write in shorthand than if we insist the word is "often".

Makes perfect sense, really !!!