Good afternoon America! Well we managed to sneak in another Jeep trip before the white beast begins falling in the high country. I know we are on borrowed time but we’ll keep making the most of the fall blue bird skies and warm afternoons until it shows its ugly head. At some point we will sadly have to put the roof back on Willy and leave it on until sometime in late May. So now, before I talk myself into a premature funk I’d better get this blog going. Irregardless, now cometh the latest and greatest edition of the Diatribe!
Beer. Well now I have your attention. I can hear you now “Oh Dooley, your discussion of fall colors was boring but now that your going over beer we are interested.” Fine! We’ll talk about beer, the bastardization of such a pure thing, Capitalism, and beer snobbery.
We have travelled all over the country in search of really good craft beers. I have found some pretty amazing brews in Texas, Oregon and right here in Colorado. There were others in California, Nevada, and even Kansas, that were pretty good but these were the standouts to me.
The Eddyline Brewery in Buena Vista, CO is pretty close to the top for me simply because of their Jolly Roger Black Lager. Oh my goodness! I’m not usually a dark beer guy, but theirs is a glass of smoky non-bitter deliciousness. If you go to the Eddyline Restaurant rather than the bar you can also get some AMAZING food in a very cool setting.
Next is the Glenwood Canyon Brewpub in crowded Glenwood Springs, CO. It is not the easiest of places to find due largely in part to the narrow, winding, busy streets of Glenwood. Parking is at a premium in town but the Brewpub has a lot just for their customers around the corner to the southeast on Blake Ave. Their beers are phenomenal and I especially like the No Name Nut Brown Ale and the St. James Irish Red Ale. They both wash down a Game Time Burger really well.
Now off to Portland, OR! McMenamins Breweries, specifically at the Kennedy School, was an amazing visit! There are breweries, distilleries, coffee, and restaurants all right there on site. It is a great place for adults, but the kids get a little bored. Most things are themed for an adult stay and *gasp* there is no television in the rooms.
Finally, let’s stop in the Republic of Texas. I know it sounds crazy but the Big Texan (yup the one with the campy decorations everywhere and the free 72 ounce steak) makes a really great beer too. The Texas Red Amber Ale and the Pecan Porter are both great choices to wash down one of their more modestly sized steaks.
So there you go! That’s my list of favorites that I’ve found so far. But wait! Not a single IPA was listed was it? That’s right, because IPA’s are disgusting. Ohhhhhhh, he did not just say that did he?! Yes, yes I did. I finally said what most of the free world has been thinking. IPA’s are nasty. Never in all of my adult years have I ever thought “You know what would go great with this hot day? A nice frosted mug of liquefied pine cones.” Have any of you ever said “A nice cold lager? No thanks, I’d rather lick this spruce tree over here.”? The hoppy IPA thing needs to be stopped, and it’s up to all of us to take a stand and call these vile “beers” what they actually are…gross. If any of you message me and say that I’m wrong and IPA’s are delicious you will simply receive these words: No, you actually don’t. Gather up the courage to tell the person trying to peddle this swill off on you that you don’t like IPA’s. I’ve got your back on this one.
Who are these people that perpetuate the myth of “hoppy goodness”? Beer snobs and hipsters. If you are really lucky you meet the guy working in the liquor store who is both of these people rolled into one. You’ve met him before. You go in and tell him you are looking for a craft beer and he goes into a 20 minute lecture on every hoppy beer they have. I have found a way to shut him up and ensure he never speaks to you again. Just tell him that you are looking for a good pumpkin beer. He will recoil in horror, look at you like you just committed one of the 7 Deadly Sins in front of the Pope, and walk away. My shopping has been so much more enjoyable since he began shunning me for not drinking the hipster Kool Aid.
Now, America, I’m not suggesting that you drink horse piddle. I will never suggest Hamm’s, Schlitz, Schaefer’s, or this bad idea in a can (which by the way is a real product):
I’m saying that there are thousands of choices for you to make. Gagging down pine sap beer does not make you look sophisticated. It makes you look silly. The only way we can stop this assault on something so simple is if we present a strong and unified front. If we don’t buy it, they will stop brewing it, and we will all be better off.
I understand that nothing is free in life, but brewers that put out a $15 6 pack are just shameful people. Unless that stuff is made from actual gold, and is packaged in a can made from the ivory of a wooly mammoth, you are being greedy. We all accept that brewers need to make money, after all that’s what keeps them in business, but give me a damn break! Your business model needs to be looked at if your overhead is so high that you need to commit robbery in order to keeps your fermenting tanks going.
So I’ve now spent the last 998 words talking about beer, places to drink beer, and beer people that should be avoided at all costs. But no where did I say that you should drink a lot and get sloppy drunk. A couple of craft beers with a good dinner is a good thing. Killing off a 24 pack instead of eating dinner is not. All things in moderation folks.
Travel, live, have a little fun in your life, and every now and then enjoy a PBR on a hot day. I won’t judge you.