My notes from the rest of my trip to San Francisco….
…begin with an early lunch at Social, where I had their Devilish Belgian amber, with rosemary and salted caramel.
I don’t know that I can taste the salt but something is curbing the caramel and keeping it from running away with this beer, which is awesome. The faint herbal whiff in the nose appears st the edges of the finish and it’s damn tasty.
As an aside, whilst sitting there, I heard the dumbest song I’ve heard in ten years. It was so bad it needed to be put on trial but so retarded it couldn’t be convicted. The song pretty much sustained my theory that modern soul music is about getting blowjobs, just in a less subtle manner than Broadway. Fortunately, I don’t know who performed it and will never have to listen to it again but if I ever find out, I’m sending them dead things in the mail.
So, Social; please improve your music selection.
The last brewpub I hit was the Thirsty Bear, where I had the Howard St. IPA.
As another aside: did you see the TB logo? That looks like a viking bear, it’s so angry. “RARR, BEER!”
Anyway…There’s a cloudy element visually to this one, (pictured at left) which comes up in the nose to add a wheat/hefe scent and give this more backbone. Unfortunately this also has a slight dirty flavor, like a peanut shell. Doesn’t ruin the beer but it encourages me to seek a different flavor.
I ended up trying the very tasty Golden Vanilla beer, which uses whole vanilla beans in the brew. I didn’t take notes on this beer, sadly but I do remember: Very Good.
Finally, I went to the Toronado pub. This is what an old man bar is like, if the old men in that bar loved beer. You do not bring dates here, you bring friends and if you get hungry, you send someone around the corner to bring in pizza because they are not in the business of serving you food. The bartenders have seen it all and hint somewhere between cordial and distain: Never rude but if you think they care about your problems, you are wrong.
So I dug it. Except, as with the Zeitgeist, the menu was not very friendly: the big board told me the brewery and the name of the beer, but not the style so I had no idea what I was ordering half the time.
That’s a design flaw, kids and I can’t say I’m thrilled about anything that comes between me and a beer that I want. Still; check it out, it’s a cool joint.