Saturday, January 9, 2016

Happy New Beer!

 The holidays are over, it's time to go back to our regular lives, try to lose weight, and get prepared for the worst of what winter has to offer.  It's not all bad though, there are usually a few left over goodies from holiday gatherings to enjoy, NFL playoffs are starting (even if my Lions aren't in them....again,) and if you're lucky you may have acquired some good beers throughout the holiday season.

While this wasn't a beer bought during the holidays, I figured it was the perfect time to enjoy one of my favorite beers of all time, Enigma from New Glarus Brewing.  Sweet, tart, sour, and incredibly complex, this beer shows why people outside the cheese state think so highly of this brewery.  Enigma is easily one of my top 3 favorite beers of all time.

 The holidays are a great time to eat too much food, drink some great beer (or whiskey,) and catch up with friends and family.  When ever my friend Pat comes to town, you know there is going to be some drinking, and inappropriate things said, that make you laugh and shake your head at the same time.  Pat made a beer run to Chicago and came back with some Bourbon County variants, and some Zombie Dust.  He also picked up a 15 year old bottle of Pappy Van Winkle, and was kind enough to share a glass.  Last year, he brought a sample of the 20 year old Pappy (the holy grail for whiskey drinkers,) the 15 year old Pappy is the slightly more attainable, more in your face little brother.  The taste is very similar, but with a a bit more of that whiskey burn.

Not to be outdone, I shared a bottle of the elusive 120 Minute IPA from Dogfish Head.  This 18% behemoth was surprisingly drinkable, and showed an incredible balance of hops and malt.  This was the perfect beer to follow up such a fantastic whiskey with.  It was a short visit, but as always, great to see Pat, Jenn, and Zoe again, and of course be able to share some amazing drinks.

The other night, I had the opportunity to meet up with my friend Dan.  He was back in Iowa visiting family, and we decided to meet for a few beers, and do an Iowa/Deleware beer exchange.  We met a Single Speed Brewing in Cedar Falls, where we had the chance to meet and talk with a few of their brewers.  It was great to finally meet Austin after talking with him on social media for several months, and also nice to meet Matt, their new Head Brewer.

All 3 of these guys know how to brew great beer, and are all a lot of fun to hang out with.  I really enjoyed "Tip the Cow" Expresso Milk Stout.  It was smooth, creamy, and roasty.  I thought it was exceptionally balanced.  I would also highly recommend their Cocoa Mint Stout, Brewed x 2, and Ambidextrous IPA, and really everything else they have to offer, you just can't go wrong there.

When we left the brewery, I gave Dan his goody bag of Toppling Goliath beers, some home brew and a few other local brews.  I wasn't ready for what he put in my car in exchange.  I guess it pays to be friends with a brewer, but this was a bit over the top! Thanks Dan for your generosity, I will try to even things out next time around.  Cheers!

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  1. Where did your buddy get that Pappy 15yr.. probably never find a bottle in Iowa....

  2. Kenwood Liqour in Chicago, a college buddy of ours owns it with his family.