Dry Irish Stout

Michelle and I stopped by Hillsdale pub for a pint of Dry Irish Stout. The beer was phenomenal, and as luck would have it, a strolling bag-piper stopped by for a few songs. Now 4 feet is not what I would call “optimum listening distance” for bag-pipes, but it was a nice touch, and the piper knew when enough was enough.

Also, a belated congrats to the Hillsdale Brewer Greg Balch for his victory at the Battle of the Belt this year. We enjoy your beer.

Odd e-mail

I got an e-mail from a dude in Brazil who had an argument with a local importer about Pilsner Urquell. He wanted me to prove that Pilsner Urquell wasn’t bitter like the importer said it was. I gave him a history on the beer, a lesson in bitterness, and commented on personal taste. He can’t get Pilsner Urquell in Brazil anymore. Did you know they’re owned by SABMiller too? What’s this world coming to?

Institutionalized Racism

The French government is proposing to tax all beers over 8.5% ABV. This is part of a national program to curb alcoholism. I’m so glad that the United States isn’t the only government with its head up its ass.

There must be some alterior motive, since wine, wich has a higher % ABV, has less tax than beer in general. State sponsored racism, or however you’d qualify it. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, though France does make some great beers.

Fortunately the EU will probably strike this down as an unfair tariff. I might have this wrong, but it also seems sorely misguided to target higher alcohol beers, since they are generally luxury type goods. As the article points out, it would be easier and cheaper to buy cheap wine, or even cheap beer if you’re really in it for the Alcohol. My guess is the AAP (average alcoholic person) doesn’t pick the 8 dollar bottle of Chimay when they want that funny feeling, especially since they can get a 12 pack of cheapo American Lager. Its everywhere, man.

Battle of the Beers

Last year realbeer.com had a battle of the beers where anyone could log on and vote daily on one of two beers. Out of 32 beers from 32 different breweries, Alaskan Smoked Porter won. Well their doing in again this year but with 64 different beers. The tournament starts around mid Feb, but right now you can go to the sight to nominate which beers you would like to see on the list.
I nominated Bridgeport IPA, Grant’s Scottish, and Rogue’s Shakespeare Stout.


I tried the famous Maudite trappist style beer from Quebec two weekends ago. I can see why people who enjoy trappist style beers would like, but I don’t like trappists and thus did not really enjoy it. Its very strong flavored and has a good body, but it has the typical fruitiness of a lambic beer. Maybe some day I will like lambic/trappist beers but until then I will have to stay away from them.

Fire Station 5

So this weekend I tried a porter from the brewing compony Fire Station 5 that is located here in Portland. It was ok but I wasn’t that impressed. It had the typical color and after taste of a porter, but the flavor and smell were a little off. Its smelled sweet almost “like my wort” as Andy stated. Plus it tasted like a porter wort, too sweet for my tastes. The taste was very mild, not like the typical porter that explodes with flavor upon tasting. Basically, I would drink it again but I wouldn’t go to the store looking to buy this beer.