Socially Distancing From Beer Gives Me Mixed Feelings

It’s happening. The Corona Virus is canceling or pushing back events and forcing beer places to temporarily close. As a consumer, I really don’t know what to do here.

On one hand, I want to respect the prevailing advice of simply staying home. Don’t move about town unless you have to.

The other? I don’t like seeing local businesses suffer. Nor do I want to see workers, that live paycheck to paycheck and sometimes rely on tips to make ends meet, suffer.

A couple weeks of little to no business can kill a small taproom and max out employee credit cards, really quick.

Damn. (That’s Fox Farm Brewery, by the way)

As I write this, I am in the camp of waiting this out a week or two. Staying home as much as I can (even though I have to go to work and have to go out for food). It changes almost by the hour so I might be doing something completely different tomorrow.

After my government recommended, “social distancing” (as an anxiety-filled loner, this is not that hard) is over and things have passed, I will go back to the breweries with a vengeance!

I’ll spend all the money I would have in the past two weeks, in one shot! Tip bigger than normal! Live. it. the. hell. up.

At this moment, the prevailing thought on Beer Twitter is to get out there and support right the hell now.

I can’t argue with that. But, then again, there is taking things too far as well:

Myself, I’m notebooking how much I think I would have spent during this time if it was a regular-ass week. Remember that. And when it’s deemed safe to get back out there, spend that, plus a little more.

Some folks are suggesting buying gift cards right now and spend them later. This is a great idea, but I don’t know of too many little breweries that have gift cards available to purchase online.

Unfortunately, I have not stocked up enough for two weeks. This would have been a start:

I just hope everyone is still there when this damn thing is done. In the meantime, I’ll just be buying beer from the store I had to go to anyway and washing my damn hands.

(This plan may be completely different in two days. It’s crazy out there)

Games To Play While Having A Beer

When I was a kid, my dad’s side of the family used to play a lot of Yahtzee!. If there was a family gathering of any sort, you can bet there was a running Yahtzee! game you could jump in on whenever y0u wanted to.

I don’t remember beer being involved, but then I don’t think I paid much attention to that when I was young. I sure as hell pay attention to it now. … beer, I pay attention to beer.

It’s been a long time since I played Yahtzee, maybe since I was a kid. But recently I bought a set because I’ve been wanting to play something while hanging out with friends and family while I’m having a beer.

Sorry is about the only game we would play before and I am looking to expand. So I recently put this question out to listeners of the Perfect Pour:

What kind of games do you play while hanging out and having some beers?

A lot of great answers came back but the best (and most post-worthy) response came from Rhyann in Spokane:

“We were recently introduced to the card game Disturbed Friends, oddly enough we played with 4 strangers which made the game even more entertaining. I think it is a great fast-paced option that touches on many of the same topics that can come up while playing Cards Against Humanity (CAH). It is easier to play with a larger group than CAH, yielding in just as many laughs and all of the awkward feelings. I highly recommend finding this card game, along with its expansion packs.

A more strategic and time-consuming game we started playing with a smaller group of friends while drinking is Dice Throne. I have to admit tho that the gameplay for me gets a little confusing especially the later it gets and deeper into the beer fridge we have gotten.

The last game I wanted to talk about was Shut the Box. This is one game I hadn’t seen until about a year ago, and it now seems to have made it into most of the taprooms we visit (that have games).

A local brewery here in Spokane called For the Love of God did things a little differently than most tasting rooms we have visited and has supplied a plethora of puzzles, the sliding puzzle pictured below has had me stumped for the last 3 visits.”

Thank you, Rhyann, for the tips and for allowing me to post your stuff!

If you have a favorite game to play while relaxing and having a few, feel free to leave it in the comment section.

YAHTZEE!

It’s All About Your Setup: Modern Times “Orderville” IPA

The importance of having a clean palate before a beer is hella underrated. We don’t think or talk about the setup to a beer, enough.

Case in point. Yesterday I had a “Coast Malone” Hazy IPA from Humble Sea Brewing. Great beer, great label.

I then went to a Modern Times “Orderville” Hazy Mosaic IPA. I love this beer, a solid go-to and…it did not taste good.

Was it old? Nope, canned four weeks prior. What the hell then?

Maybe I got a bad batch. Oh well. Not the first time.

The next day, my first beer of the day is another Orderville from the same four-pack; it was excellent. Just like I know it to be. (Isn’t the Mosaic hop magic?)

So what’s going on? It has to be the Coast Malone setup from yesterday. By the way, I like to refer to what you eat/drank/breathed before a beer as the “setup”.

I know this clean palate thing is not a revaluation. Cleansing your palate is something we know we should do. But we don’t do it that often and forget how it affects our beer judgments.

On the Perfect Pour, we have a constant stream of Krispy Crackers going. But many taprooms don’t have this option. So what do you do when you’re out and about?

One thing you can do is completely switch beer styles on your next selection. Then go back to your preferred.

Water. Having a water is something. Not great, but definitely better than nothing (and you should be hydrating anyway).

Many times I do the ‘lick your hand’ trick. It looks weird but I do it. I probably should insert a video here of me licking the side of my hang by I think WordPress has some sorta standards for hand licking porn.

Let me know if you have any palate resetting tips for me in the comments.

Cheers to a clean setup!

Anatomy Of A Hangover

25 West IPA

The drinking started on an empty stomach. That was my first mistake.

I ate a packed lunch of salami, cheese, Cheese-Its, cookies and water (in that order) at 11:30 in the morning. Drank a diet soda around 3:00. Don’t be jealous of me.

Once off work, at 5:30, we went to a new beer bar by my house, Out Of The Barrel. Here was my playlist:

Beer One: 25 West from Moonraker Brewing.

  • Clear IPA
  • 6.6% ABV
  • I rated it a 4.
  • Full pour

Beer Two: Some Grass from Moonraker Brewing.

  • Hazy IPA
  • 7% ABV
  • I rated it a 4
  • Full pour

Beer Three: Unknown: It was either Yeastbound & Down from Moonraker, or Tiger Uppercut from Fieldwork (I guess I wasn’t paying close attention).

  • Hazy IPA
  • 8% or 8.5% ABV
  • Rated…4.2?
  • 12oz pour

The Out Of The Barrel drinking stops. There is some relaxing. I buy a four-pack of Humble Sea’s Coast Malone.

Continue reading “Anatomy Of A Hangover”

‘Smooth’ Is As Good As Any Dopey Beer Descriptor

What does “smooth” mean when describing beer? Don’t say it doesn’t mean anything because you ALL know what it means!

So, people out there on Beer Twitter making fun of smooth because it was the top description on Untappd last year.

Don’t get flipped, bro! Neophytes? Go back to your spirts cave. That’s not what most people are saying.

It’s not bitter. Easy to drink. Drinkable. Hence: SMOOTH.

Yeah maybe it’s lazy but we ALL KNOW WHAT THE FUCK IT MEANS!

So back the hell off of SMOOTH! Back the hell off because smooth isn’t the only common term that means something and nothing all at once.

How about?:

  • Crisp
  • Bright
  • Flavorful
  • Light
  • Hoppy
  • Thin
  • Accessible
  • Complex
  • Balanced
  • Clean

See?! It’s all crap AND useful, at once. Unless you tear down all beer descriptors, leave smooth alone.

Deeper Take

As humans, all we really want is for things to go smoothly. We want our day to go smooth. Wedding. Trip. Latest hazy release.

Smooth is good. Smooth makes us happy.

So, as a brewer, don’t you want your beer to make people happy? If someone says your beer is “smooth”, they like your beer. Pretty nice if you think about it.

Smooth might be the most positive beer descriptor out there.