Sunday, March 15, 2015

Closing In, notes from the Rogue.

"It's that time of day. When we bottle up the sun. Let our inhibitions run.
Feeling courageous and numb."
-Kenny Chesney
OC's southwest coast; Sinepuxent Bay.  3/12/2015.

   Got a buddy of mine at the gym who's been surfing the cold sauce all winter. Hard core. Course, he mentioned that a few times at head high plus (yeah, those winter lows will give us some unpleasant pleasantries) he gave it a pass.  Too much time under...instant ice cream head. No fun. So, he sticks to the chest to head or less. Calm, near windless days. Water in the 30's...not for me. However Sun's up, snow's melting, air 'n seas are warming. All I need is to get the boots and gloves straight. New ones maybe. I can feel it. The next surf. I'm closing in.
The next session awaits.

   Closed out a couple bottles of a tasty IPA over the weekend. Firestone Walker Brewing, located on California's Central Coast, has been around since 1996. Union Jack IPA measures 70 IBUs as a result of a double dry hopping process (sounds painful I know), and exhibits in both aroma and flavor strong grapefruit and orange citrus with pine impressions. Clear, honey-gold pour. Strong lacing. Tight hop bitterness lends to an almost sweet (partially due to the 7.5% ABV), but crisp finish. I rated this a B+. Very good brew.
"In a study, scientists report that drinking
beer can be good for the liver. I'm sorry,
did I say 'scientists'? I meant Irish
people."                                  -Tina Fey

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Noid Rage, notes from the Rogue

"There's a fire in the furnace, breakin' out and breakin' loose."  -Rage in the Cage
OC's Right Coast throwin' a fit, 2/26/2015   -Dispatch photo

    More snow this past week. Annoying. Not the snow so much as the crap that follows. Record cold temps especially at night. Means no warming of our coastal waters. Bays and rivers remain frozen. Atlantic remains in the lower 30's. Any warming is soon followed by rain...or sleet. A sloppy mess. I'd rather face a late evening set of mushburgers. Yeah, I'm raging inside a bit. Only release is the gym. Does help. March is here. Maybe scratch us up a warming trend. That would help too. We'll see.
Morning after, the 'Bury 2/27/2015.

    A trio of beer assessments. Pass the time whilst stuck inside. First, Left Hand Brewing's Sawtooth Nitro. One of Left Hand's three firsts. Their fame claim...the first nitrogen beers without the widget. Sawtooth is an ESB which poured a cascading orange-gold with a pillowy, white finger and a half head. Slight nutty aroma. Creamy, bready, light malt taste with a light bitterness (27 IBUs) in the finish. I got this because I couldn't find Bodingtons. A little flat making it pale in comparison. It is sessionable at 5.3%, but I rated it a B-.

   Snake Dog IPA. 7.1% ABV and 60 IBU's make this a bracing IPA on a cold day. Medium bodied with aromas of orange, resin and floral grass. Astringent tastes of orange and grapefruit. Nice and hoppy, but not overly bitter. Poured a clear burnt orange with a two finger tan head. Good carbonation and lacing. Flying Dog does not disappoint. I rated it a B+.

   The heavy hitter of the group was Lagunitas Cappuccino Stout. A big, big beer at 9.2% ABV. Pour was a dark, opaque, velvety brown with a firm finger and a half dark tan head. Thick, sticky, brown lacing. Strong coffee with hints of dark chocolate in the aroma and taste. Very rich. Very smooth. Very dangerous. 29 IBU's of hops finished it with a perfect light bitterness. Rated an A-.
"Finish your beer...there are sober kids
in Africa!"                -Anon.