Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Summer Took a French Exit, the Bastard, But We Outsmarted Him.

Over in that photo, yonder, sits a pale ale on a bar on the top deck of a boat tied to a dock on a really swell lake for skiing or swimming or whatever else you like to do in the water. The sweat, as it always does, tells a story of cold on the inside and warm on the outside. Summer came too late and left too early for us. After four weeks in the Midwest we dropped very suddenly back into crisp, gray Brussels. A shock to the system.

Then, a few nights ago, I tasted one of the best beers I've ever had. Really. It had been waiting patiently in fermenter then luggage then cupboard then fridge to finally say aloha. My brother and I made it in mid-August, in our parents' garage, a week after he got married. We named it after my son, who watched from his grandpa's big burly arms. It was hot out.

The beer pours a bright and clear gold with a sturdy, creamy white head. It smells just like the boatloads of fruity, floral American hops with which we dry-hopped it. It has a firm bitterness that doesn't coat the tongue, getting swept away by lively carbonation and finishing pretty damned dry. It is utterly quaffable. To borrow from the Marines, "there are many beers like it, but this one is mine."

I only have four left in the fridge, and each is more valuable to me than anything in my cellar. Each is summer in a bottle. Four more chances to say aloha. Hello and goodbye.


  1. It was fun making the beer. I have not opened my samples yet. But it sounds like I need to do that ASAP.

    Butch (the Dad with the big burly arms)

  2. Let me know what you think, Gramps!