03-21-07 - 1

I'm having some super great beers right now, all in the 22 oz format.

Hop Henge (from Deschutes brewery, the prople who make the great Mirror Pond) is an IPA, a classic "hop bomb" and it doesn't disappoint with tons of hoppy bite and aroma. The thing that makes it special is it doesn't have too much of that hoppy bitterness, and has some nice fruity sweet notes to balance the bite. Goes well with my house-made spiced nuts.

Anderson Valley's Dubbel (aka "Brother David's Double") (from the folks who make the very nice Boont Amber) is a dark belgian ale, which is pretty rare in the US but very common in Belgium (I adore the dark Affligem but it's impossible to find here). It's got the yeasty fruity notes that you expect from a Belgian ale, but it has more malt and sweetness which makes it an extremely full sip, you definitely have to chew it and it doesn't need any food to complement it. The lingering taste is only sweetness, it's lacking some kind of depth. It reminds of a few nights I spent in Belgium; right after college I took the summer and backpacked around Europe in stereotypical fashion; I spend a few days in small towns in Belgium checking out Marc Chagall and learning the difference between the French and Flemish Belges, eating the most amazing Gauffres (waffles) in the world, and spending nights drinking this dark sweet high alcohol nectar of the gods in these great fun bars at picnic tables. It was one of the coolest hostels I stayed at, there were always fun people hanging out in the communal room and we'd meet up and go out for dinner and drinks. There was this hot American backpacker girl there who was just looking for fun and "experiences" but I was still in my "sex is for true love" phase so nothing happened.

I know there are tons of fancy beer review sites on the net, but I just can't dig their beer-snob culture yet. I love tasty beer but it's still just freaking beer.

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