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A little less than a happy high
Not to scale
This weekend at Eric's Pajama Jam 2005, I got to talking about working the Stone table for two events in a row. The most commonly asked question was whether I had managed to score one of the magnum bottles they were pouring from at the VIP table at EBF.

The answer is no, I did not. I did, however, get this one. Before I left for the evening, it had been filled with deliciousness an Imperial IPA that had been aged since its release in September of 2001. I have to say that I thought it was pretty sweet being able to sit around drinking superb beer with beer reps of different stripes while the BA volunteers struck the event around us.

To the left of the magnum, I've provided a 12 oz. Dogfish Head bottle for comparison. I tried shooting with a penny, but who would see a penny next to this monster?

And yes, that is a small padlock on the swing-top.
6 comments or Leave a comment
why_style From: why_style Date: February 23rd, 2005 04:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
that's suh-weet! do you know if any beer can be aged or if it only works with certain types? and are you a fan of dogfishhead?

btw, thanks for your advice on beer with cheese last week- it made for a really nice long weekend. i started simple by trying paulaner hefe-weizen with a clochette and an ESB with some lancashire. very tasty indeed, especially the second one. any advice on a good cheese to go with a really floral IPA?
komos From: komos Date: February 23rd, 2005 05:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
Anything can be aged, but the beers that improve over time are generally high gravity beers, often with a lot of hops character. I've seen a lot of people lay down old ales, barleywines, and big stouts, but it will also work with biere de gardes and all sorts of Belgians.

I like most of what DFH produces, if only because they come across as highly experimental, but still manage to produce really well balanced beers. Their efforts to push the envelope involve something more informed than, "I bet if we put even MORE hops in it, there'll be FLAVOR!"

NP. I'm still just learning myself, mostly by pestering my favorite cheesemonger for advice and keeping all that tucked away for future reference. As for the IPA, there are a couple of different directions you could go. If you did a milder cheese, it would highlight more of the floral character of the hops. You could try something like Nevat (Spain) or Westminster Dairy's Live Water Toma (VT, USA) for this. If you swing to the other end of the spectrum, you could look for a really bloomy Selles sur Chere (France.)
why_style From: why_style Date: February 23rd, 2005 07:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
thank you. you are just an ever-flowing fountain of info, and i bathe my ignorance in it. of course, the aging thing makes perfect sense now that you say it. if i find any new combinations that i like, i'll be sure to reciprocate the knowledge sharing.

but i agree with you about DFH. i love their IPAs and the chicory stout, but i'm still not sure where i come down on the world wide stout. i tried the november '04 edition and wasn't too happy, but then i've never really understood how one approaches a dessert beer. perhaps i wasn't being "sippy" enough. i've really gotta make it over to deleware one of these weekends cuz i'd really like to try some of their more experimental stuff that i haven't found a local source for.

is it just me or has there recently been a sudden emergence of barleywines? 5 years ago it seemed they seemed a rare find indeed, but i was at whole foods the other day and counted 11 different barleywines. haven't tried any with cheese yet though, but i will. oh how i will.
komos From: komos Date: February 23rd, 2005 08:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
WWS is best if it's shared in a tasting. Generally, I'll bring it out after a few rounds of "lesser" beers and serve it in tiny snifters right before the Sam Adams Utopias. The combo blows peoples' minds. ^_^ But yeah... it's definitely a sippin' beer.

I think the barleywine surge and (even more recently) the seemingly unchecked urge to "Imperial" everything (Imperial Pilsner? c'mon...) are reflective of Americans' tendency towards excess. In the 80's we rediscovered good beer. A little after that, craft breweries seemed to develop one or two "big" beers as a kind of punctuation of their line. Now, it seems like they're all trying to make bigger and bigger beers just as a means of outdoing one another. On the one hand, the trend is very exciting and interesting. On the other, I'm getting a little tired of "extreme" being the main selling point of a product. I'm far less impressed with a company that makes a fantastic "double imperial stout barley ale" (whatever that means) if their pale ale is utterly unremarkable. To me, that says that they haven't really learned the basics and are simply relying on overwhelming you to make an impression.
mittenstein From: mittenstein Date: February 23rd, 2005 05:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
komos From: komos Date: February 23rd, 2005 05:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
It's suitable for use as a club, and I like it that way.
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