Archive | May, 2010

There was art there?!

17 May

Today I attended the North Park Festival of Art. A couple of friends and I went with the intent of getting out and about, trying something new, and trying some local fare. Well, we made it as far as the Craft Beer Block. Turns out going to the beer block first kind of hinders your drive to check out any of the arts. Whoops. The Craft Beer Block afforded us the opportunity to try 10 different local restaurants and sample 8 different craft beers. The two that really stood out to us were  Lagunitas’s Undercover Investigation Shut-Down Ale, an “Imperial Mild” and Julian Hard Cider. Two REALLY different brews, but both very enjoyable. The Lagunitas Ale wasn’t too bitter and had a nice aftertaste and was all around pretty smooth. The cider, just yum. Ciders are usually too sweet and kind of thick for me, but this cider was really crisp, light and nicely refreshing. Both come highly recommended.

We did run into an old friend whose band was playing and spent the rest of the afternoon with him and a local bar. There, I found out that Brewery Ommegang’s Hennepin goes really well with a carne asada burrito.

We’re also still working through Tasting Beer. Right now its covering how taste works. There’s more to it than just your tongue, you use your sense of smell, sight and there are psychological factors involved. Mui interesting.

My History of Beer 101

10 May

Alright. Its time for the first official post. Who’s excited? I sure am! So I cracked into Tasting Beer, and banged out the first chapter, which was a history of beer in general. Lots of interesting little tidbits in there. For example, did you know that back in the day in Mesopotamia people got together and drank beer out of a communal jug with long straws? Although the history of beer is interesting, that’s something that you all can Wikipedia, so I’ll take this opportunity to give you my history with beer.
I grew up in the Midwest, so most of my beer experience can be summed up in two words: Miller Lite. I was surrounded by it. It was in every refrigerator, it was in every cooler at summer time family outings, it was ever present in the recycle bin. In my family, if you go to someone’s house for a BBQ you bring a case of Miller Lite, it was always in the adults’ hands at the card table, and at the VFW you order a pitcher with Clamato Juice. Because it was always a part of fond childhood memories, I’ll always hold a soft spot for Miller Lite. The parties I attended in the later years of high school had me drinking the glorious Natural Ice until I discovered Vodka. That pretty much took me through my freshman year of college. After a few incidents that lead to me moving back to my hometown and in with my parents, I spent a lot of time with my old friends and found that their tastes had moved on from Natty Ice to kegs of Miller Lite, and on the rare occasion Coors Light. Moving out to San Diego, I did the drunk hussy bar thing and got back together with my old flame, Vodka, swearing off beer for its high carb content and inability to get me black out. A few years ago, enjoying a meal at Taylor’s in Pacific Beach, I had one of their in house brews and realized that hey, this is pretty good. Beer was back in the rotation. As my need to go out, get trashed, and make bad life decisions waned; I started drinking more beer again. This time around, beer came in the form of local brews, interestingly named bottles from BevMo, and drafts that I liked for how they tasted. Now I’m ready to start expanding my beer taste even further and get to trying all of the local breweries that I’ve heard good things about.

The Beery Beginning

2 May

Welcome to the journey of my beer education. I’m a normal girl. I love pink, I love shoes, I love art, and I love drinking beer. After visiting a local beer bar and being highly overwhelmed by the menu and the question, “What’ll you have?” I’ve come to realize there is an entire world of beer out there that I know nothing about. I have decided its high time that get learned up, so in the future answering the bartender won’t be an open mouthed stare. In order to do that I’ve gotten my mitts on “Tasting Beer: An Insider’s Guide to the World’s Greatest Drink” by Randy Mosher, a book where “Readers will learn how to identify the scents, colors, flavors, and mouth-feel of all the major beer styles.”

So here’s the plan:

I work my way through the book, trying new beers, learning all of the styles, and sharing with you all of my experiences. I live in a part of San Diego with very easy access to a few great beer bars, breweries, and restaurants. I am making it a part of my education to also go to these places and mingle with other beer lovers. I’m excited to get to learning. Lets go!