Our very knowledgeable poster Tim commented on “cellarable” beers on one of the last Beer O’ Clock posts.
That got me thinking. Why not?
If you’re thinking beer cellar, you must go to this website, http://www.brewbasement.com/. This is a fantastically informative site that has everything you need to know about cellaring beer.
Jason, the gentleman who runs the site, writes “Probably best reason is that aging beer can increase the complexity of your beer. Flavors can often be found in an aged beer that weren’t present in the fresh version. You can also commonly find certain flavors that seem to enhance with age, becoming more and more prominent and delicious as the year(s) pass.”
When it comes to beer, I’m not the most patient fella. I buy ’em, damn it, I’m going to drink ’em.
After driving through a blizzard to buy 12 packs of Arrogant Bastard Ale and Ruination at Steve’s in Madison, I needed to make some room in the fridge.
So, following “The Brew Basement” suggestions, I’ve “cellared” Old Rasputin (a Russian imperial stout with a 9 % ABV), Goose Island’s Bourbon County Stout (a American double/imperial stout with a 13 % ABV), Capital Brewery’s Autumnal Fire (a doppelbock with 8.5 % ABV) and the 2008 Sierra Nevada Bigfoot (an American barleywine with 9.6 % ABV).
The Rasputin has a giant coffee kick to it. Bourbon County is just that, a big, bold schwack of bourbon. Autumnal Fire is bready and sweet but an easy drink with a high ABV. Bigfoot is a hoppy, fruity barleywine.
So, let’s set our watches for six months and see what happens.
BTW, my “cellar” is the cabinet under the sink in the bar. It’s cool in the basement, especially in the winter, and it’s dark there. But no, it’s not a cave.
While at Steve’s, I stumbled across Delirium Tremens, a Belgian strong pale ale from Brouwerij Huyghe in Melle, Belgium.
It gets an A-minus on 812 reviews at BeerAdvocate.
Here’s a “C” review, “Very sour taste. Tasted very similar to green apple peel. I am allergic to apples, so as you can imagine it didnt agree with me.”
Here’s an “A,” “Starts of strong, with an explosion of fruit tastes, with a strong malty sweetness. The swallow brings out the hops, and the aftertaste is like a bite of fresh pear. Absolutly no flavor hint that this is 8.5 ABV.”
The sour apple is a turn off, but I’ll give it a go.
During the UNI liveblog, I talked with MF about compiling a Corridor beer list.
What bars and restaurants in our area have the best beer lists? And what about stores? Where can you get the “exotics”? I know about Benz and John’s and Wilke’s in Mount Vernon. Am I missing someone? (Hy-Vee isn’t too shabby, either.)
A friend sent me the list from the Hopleaf Bar in Chicago. Here’s the link http://www.hopleaf.com/bottle_menu.html. It’s absolutely amazing.
I know we won’t come up with anything like that, but let’s get a list going. I’d also like to hear about brewpubs. Feel free to give me your reviews, too. I might not be able to tend to beer things the next two weeks — darned bowl game — but I’d really like to hear from you guys on this.
Tell me about your favorite beer places.
Have a great Christmas and New Year’s.