I have had a dickens of a time getting myself to sit down. And my notes are piling up to dangerous heights. This would have been the perfect early January post, except now it’s March. But that doesn’t make any sense. And then I thought of the fiscal year. So I hereby declare that March is the end of my fiscal year and, hence, this is really a year end review. Many short pieces follow, so if you have any ADD tendencies, you really should enjoy the following. However, I have put them in chronological order in case you have some obsessive tendencies. I will try to cover any other quirky behaviors in future posts. “I’m a beer writer, not a doctor, Jim!”
In many ways, leaving the field of education is much trying to leave the Mafia (or so I’ve seen in movies). You get pulled back in and, for me, happily. While doing a school district-owned cable science program and working on my Ph.D in Science Education (alas, an ABD’er, but shed no tears) I came into contact with many people doing great work all around the country. Two of these folks, Dan and Hedi, run the Wisconsin Fast Plants program on the campus of the University of Wisconsin-Madison. They invited me out to help host a series of segments on the program. In a makeshift studio with a wonderful crew we knocked out a number of segments in several days. http://fastplants.org/index.php. They were also kind enough to schedule the video shoot during Madison Craft Beer Week. Rock on!
The beer highlight of the trip was a visit to the new New Glarus brewery. In the past, I have eschewed both fruit beers and sour beers. They both tended to overpower my palate. Fortunately, brewers are taking a more subtle approach to both of these styles. New Glarus has some absolutely stunning combinations, including the Raspberry Tart. Next time, I’m driving there so I can take a load home.
I had the opportunity to attend the Colorado Brewer’s Fest in Fort Collins, CO which may rival Denver in craft breweries per capita. I attended the fest with one of my wife’s co-workers and his brewing buddies. They are all experienced home brewers, so I got the opportunity to ask lots of questions, and hear evaluations of beer. Each palate is different, so it served to widen my vocabulary about the nuances in various beers.
November 8th, 2015
Pat was out of town, so I decided to trip-trop, trip-trop over to Avery’s fine facility in Boulder. It was probably the closest brewery where I could get to my 1000th beer on Untapp’d (see previous post- http://beeredland.com/2013/08/13/untappd-its-like-boy-scouts-for-beer/)
A Holiday Surprise
As many of you know I am a retired elementary school teacher. I left a PhD program to follow my passions of beer and food. I work nearby at a Whole Foods store as a cashier. I also do preschool story times, and kids events. I love talking to people! When kids come through my line they almost always get a magic trick. I was stunned when Jamie and Eric came through my line and gave me this bottle of Goose Island BCS. I have heard about it for quite sometime, but (at age 60 as I write) I am just not interested in standing in lines anymore. It was fantastic and I was sipping so slowly. I was able to make it last for an Edenic 90 minutes.
New Holland Brewing
At $16 per four pack New Holland’s Dragon’s Milk Stout is a tad pricey. But, shucky darns it is so incredibly tasty. A sipping beer that pairs well with any chocolate dessert or even as a dessert in and of itself. As luck would have it, I happened to run into one of the beer manager’s at my local store, Superior Liquors, and he mentioned that he had some newly released holiday varietals in the back, coffee/chocolate, raspberry, and chile. There wasn’t enough room to display them. Oh my! More temptation. I tried to save one of each to pull out occasionally when friends came over, but the temptation was too great! Watch for them next holiday season!!
Much more to talk about in future posts as I am back in the saddle again.
“You can’t be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline — it helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer.” — Frank Zappa
Hans and Trena