Beers I Have Known — Ale Asylum FVCK COVID Pilsner

This series of posts is dedicated to the many, many six packs, pony kegs and pints that have sauntered into my life at one point or another.

fvck covid

I am lucky enough to divert my fretting away from my own household’s well-being to instead focus on the array of businesses — particularly favorite, local businesses — that are facing dire challenges due the measures properly taken to contain the current global pandemic. To the degree that we can, we’re doing our part to keep dollars flowing in the direction of the people whose efforts we value most. Among the targets of our commerce are local craft breweries, which have already taken a mighty hit in what might be the early stages of this lingering health calamity.

I also appreciate the ingenuity many are bringing to this dire moment, so I was very happy to rush out last week and trade a portion of my pay for a six-pack of FVCK COVID, the attention-getting new offering from Ale Asylum, arguably the pack leader my current city’s fine beer scene. Beyond the obviously appeal of the caustically charged name, the beer is dandy, a perfect, easy-drinking pilsner that offers the promise of gleaming summer days to come. It’s exactly the sort of beer that Wisconsin needs in the month of April under usual circumstances, when everyone in the state is sloughing off the heavy weight of winter and thinking of cookouts and ball games to come. Now this taste of summertime ease and freedom makes for a defiant swig, and it’s all the more pleasurable because of it.

Previous entries in this series can be found by clicking on the “Beers I Have Known” tag.

Beers I Have Known — Octopi Brewing Barrel-Aged S’mores Stout

This series of posts is dedicated to the many, many six packs, pony kegs and pints that have sauntered into my life at one point or another.

smores stout
(Source)

Many times, I have found myself lured into decadent decisions by a beer that promises to meld some cornucopia of sweet treats with the heartiness of a rich, dark brew. Nearly as often, I’m left grimacing at a flagrantly artificial-tasting concoction that is immediately cloying, coating the tongue with a candy-stripe lacquer. So when I encounter a beer that manages the balance properly, that drinks like a caress and tickles the palate like a satisfying dessert, my relief is exceeded only by my gratitude. And when there’s a perfectly applied whiskey tinge, too, the experience pushes close to full-on swoon. And that’s the best way for me to recount the drinking of the luscious glass of Barrel-Aged S’mores Stout presented to me during a recent, overdue visit to nearby Octopi Brewing.

Previous entries in this series can be found by clicking on the “Beers I Have Known” tag.

Beers I Have Known — Around the Bend English Mild with Coffee

This series of posts is dedicated to the many, many six packs, pony kegs and pints that have sauntered into my life at one point or another.

around-001

I don’t ever really need a beer, but there are times when I definitely want one. Similarly, normal morning joshing aside, coffee is not a beverage I actually require to get through a day, but I am always exceedingly happy to have a fresh cup poured for me. One of the most blessed things in this misbegotten culture of ours is the emergences of good beer that incorporates coffee as a component.

As noted, I acknowledge there are never instances when I truly need either beer or coffee, and yet I am convinced, deep down in my soul, that there are occasions when only an artful combination of both will do to get me through the task of the moment. I would like to thank Chicago’s Around the Bend Brewing Company for coming to my rescue the most recent occurrence of one of those occasions.

Beers I Have Known — Burnt City Brewing Pterodactyl Deathscream

This series of posts is dedicated to the many, many six packs, pony kegs and pints that have sauntered into my life at one point or another.

deathscream

It can be dangerous to visit breweries while traveling, especially with full knowledge that there is plenty of room in the car for consumable souvenirs. On a recent trip to Chicago, for example, I was quite sure my beer fridge back at home was stocked adequately. Then, on a recommendation, a stop was made at the District Brew Yards, a unique facility home to multiple brewers and their collective tap room built around a unique pour-your-own model. Sampling every contributing brewery’s wares was a pleasure, but the main attraction was Burnt City Brewing. Small pours were sampled and savored, and, before I knew it, a box heavy with cans was loaded into the back of the car. And someone else was driving. I was reminded of that grand adventure recently when I opened up a Pterodactyl Deathscream, a double dry-hopped DIPA and was enthralled all over again. The brewery visits might be dangerous, but they are clearly risks worth taking.

Beers I Have Known — Alarmist Brewing Le Jus

This series of posts is dedicated to the many, many six packs, pony kegs and pints that have sauntered into my life at one point or another.

alarmist le

With the rapid expansion of dots on the craft brewery map, trying to determine the best place to stop when visiting a different city can be exceedingly difficult. For this reason, I’m especially grateful when I have a guide. And thus a recent trip to Chicago found me and a fabulous group of friends sitting around the bar at Alarmist Brewing, sampling freely from their wares, including the delectable New England-style IPA dubbed Le Jus.

It was, to put in plainly, a very good day.

 

Previous entries in this series can be found by clicking on the “Beers I Have Known” tag.

Beers I Have Known — Hopkins Brewing Company Hipster AF

This series of posts is dedicated to the many, many six packs, pony kegs and pints that have sauntered into my life at one point or another.

hopkins image

I’ve become a little complacent about the ease in which the supercomputer I carry around in my pocket can lead me to unknown attractions. Recently, I was reminded of the pleasure that comes from taking a little different approach when traveling than the pinpoint research of online hunting. So I grabbed a couple of local newspapers when I settled in for breakfast during a trip to Salt Lake City. As I flipped through the pages, I discovered all sorts of possibilities, including a recommendation for a local craft brewery, the sort of place I didn’t necessarily expect to find in the metropolis that sits under the banner of heaven.

A thick, cloudy dry hopped concoction that borders on the dangerous, the Hopkins Brewing Company Hipster AF rewarded my extra research effort. Thanks for the assist, local media in Salt Lake City. I’m grateful for your continued work.

Previous entries in this series can be found by clicking on the “Beers I Have Known” tag.

Beers I Have Known — Foothills Brewing Hoppyum IPA

This series of posts is dedicated to the many, many six packs, pony kegs and pints that have sauntered into my life at one point or another.

hoppyum

This has been a long, rough day of travel. But at least my unwanted diversion put me in the range of one of my favorite breweries, which now typically resides well outside my geographic reach. This drink may be a consolation prize, but it’s still a prize.

Previous entries in this series can be found by clicking on the “Beers I Have Known” tag.

Beers I Have Known — Odell Brewing Company 90 Shilling Ale

This series of posts is dedicated to the many, many six packs, pony kegs and pints that have sauntered into my life at one point or another.

90

If I was going to be many miles away from America’s Dairyland when I endured the heartbreak of watching the Milwaukee Brewers lose a postseason Game Seven, at least I had the kindness of a fine beer.

Thank, Colorado, I had a swell time amidst your mountains.

Previous entries in this series can be found by clicking on the “Beers I Have Known” tag.

Beers I Have Known — Zero Gravity Craft Brewery Keller Dry-Hopped Lager

This series of posts is dedicated to the many, many six packs, pony kegs and pints that have sauntered into my life at one point or another.

keller
If only I had that many! (Source)

I am a mediocre beer hunter. Much as I value expertly brewed concoctions, I am highly limited in my ability to keep all the revered and coveted craft beer offerings in my head so I can make expert selections at remote liquor stores. Confronted by walls of strangers, I grab with almost random recklessness, stocking up with no assurance that I’m doing so wisely. At any given point, I’m likely to pass up a true wonder while acquiring stock for the garage fridge that will be enjoyed but forgotten. But sometimes I get lucky.

I secured a few cans of Zero Gravity Craft Brewery’s Keller Dry-Hopped Lager on a road trip to New York earlier this year. I like dry-hopped beers, I like lagers, and a member of my household has caused me to be quite fond of the name Keller. And I was further enticed by the relatively frill-free packaging. While the theory doesn’t always hold, I’ve often found that the breweries that aren’t preoccupied with busy labels or given to elaborate, pun-peppered names are instead focused on making fine beer. In this instance, the guideline worked marvelous.

Tonight, I drank my last can, imbibing over the grill in what could very well be the last throes of warmer weather. It was like a summer romance coming to an end, inspiring instant nostalgia. My, it was nice.