7pm Rockin’ Out

It is the first, genuine, start to finish, nice day of the year in Portland. It’s the kind of day to drive around with the windows rolled all the way down and Van Halen cranked to teenager horniness levels.

GoodLife IPANaturally, I was at work all day. Still, I’m out now with a GoodLife Comatose Imperial IPA and I couldn’t have made a more dead on selection. Maybe a little too heavy on the grapefruit in the finish but I don’t care: it’s been warm all day and I need something to drink.

We could all use more rockin’ out, I think. Hasn’t been much reason to do so, lately. The winter has stretched long fingers into spring, a Johnny Law saying ‘No no no’ to our season’s attempt to bring the funtimes. If I’m right, we’re coiled for either a summer of bawdy joy or seething, near riot moments. I’m going to hope for the former. The riots can wait, although I think we could use a bit more seething, these days. I’m sure you’ve noticed but things ain’t quite right. A little seethery could be a nice spur into fixing some of that.

However, once it’s fixed let’s try to remember we’re all friends here. Beer; one for you and one for me. We’ll set aside the aggro of an unjust world and rock out. Maybe some AC/DC?

Shit, what do people rock out to these days? I mean, rap music is a bit to slow and low, country is….well fuck country for the rockin’ out. Red Solo Cup? Fuck that catchy dickery. Pop music is, was and always has been shit. That there have been blossoms from it does not excuse anything. Move along. You can’t rock out to that.

Ah, I know. Andrew WK: I Want To See You Go Wild. Let’s see if someone can top that action! Just the thing to drive home to.

I bought this VI

Another bonus of having my Dad visit is that it’s a perfect excuse to redeem a coupon I’ve had for a free growler fill at Vertigo Brewing. It’s unfortunate that I feel the need to make an excuse but the brewery is waay out there (from where I am.)

On the other hand, Mike, the brewer in attendance was friendly and very cool. He showed us the work they were doing to bring nice tasting room into existence and mentioned the OLCC would be out Monday to let him know what requirements they had. Which is fantastic because now one could make a leisurely trip out there, instead of just a drive-by.

As for the beer I got: It was the bourbon barreled stout. Here are my notes, casually edited for readability:

This beer holds the bourbon back. You can taste it but it’s not the dominant flavor.
Not too dense on the stout, either but solid enough to give it some flesh and the flavors play off each one nicely. Really drinkable and it could go with other edibles: a nice difference between that and some other versions of this style which are very hard to pair with food.

I also had sips of Vertigo’s Nut Brown ale and their IPA and liked both of them. I tried the port-barreled porter and thought it was good but before jumping on a growler full, I think I would have needed to sit down and let it warm up. Still; the beers were all well done and if you get a chance to try ’em, do it.

Pale, completed

Said I’d post the recipeĀ  so now’s the time.

Steeping grains
.5 lb 2 row
.5 lb simpsons golden promise
.5 lb C60

Malts
7 lb LME
also, made a 1 gallon, w/11.5oz LME mix, to add to end.
added it @ aprox 105 degrees, know the cooled wort will chill it fine.

Hops
7/8th oz hops from Amber dry hop Citra
1.5oz Crystal hops @ 60
1.25 oz Crystal @ 20

Final use of octoberfest yeast from Laurelwood

Initial Gravity: 1.072

TG: 1.02

FG: 1.029

Yeast pitched @ approx 78
2ndary 3.22,12, gravity 1.020
bottled 3.31.12

ABV: 6.77%

Second Beer:
Same as the first, except:
2nd use of Pacman yeast

Initial Gravity: 1.068ish

TG: 1.021

FG: 1.03

Yeast pitched @ approx 78

ABV: 6.37%

7pm The First Mammal To Wear Pants

My Dad is visiting and has decided to join me for tonight’s outing. It’s always cool to have company and having my Dad out is especially nice because he’s always supportive of what I’m doing.

Don’t get me wrong: I know you’re out there reading. He just tells me that he’s reading and that’s pretty cool.

We have arrived on an Event Night: Anderson Valley is being spotlit so I’ve tried the sampler of their beers. I’ve only finished one so far but it is not boding well…there’s nothing wrong with it but there isn’t anything distinctive either. Why would I order a pint of it when there’s so many other choices?

Portland version of first world problems, I know. Bite me.

Dad’s been focused on evolution, lately. The evolution of consciousness, to be precise: he believes that for us to move forward as a species, we’re going to have to have the kind of leap that took us away from the gorillas and bonobos and set us toward being humans. Distinct humans, that is.

I’m drinking something that might be a golden sour ale, now. An evolution, I suppose but I don’t know that I’d call it an advancement.

Having your parents visit is always a strange thing. All the stuff that you were comes out, all the stuff that you are both conflicts and cooperates with it and you’re in a middle ground, usually in front of friends and lovers, where there’s multiple dimensions of yourself all occurring at once. A time problem worth of Hawking, a personality problem evoked by Sybil. What to do?

But it’s not a bad thing, just awkward sometimes. I suppose a similar thing happens when old friends visit and there’s an evocation of the old days, even though it’s the days that are young and you who are old, now. A clash between the past and the now.

My third beer is a bit like a raspberry, chocolate sour ale. Nothing like the Duchesse, understand, but mining a similar hope. The finish is a little to harsh though, with this beer being (however fairly or not) judged against one of the best beers ever. I can’t object to it but I don’t know that I can recommend more than small doses of this one–it’s the Grand Cru.

In the meantime, we talk about evolving. One of the more interesting clashes is my point of view, where evolution happens in increments over time, and his which has a sudden leap happening. (Note: I’m simplifying for the reader. The discussion is much more involved.)

I have a feeling that both of us are right; leaps are precluded by a number of steps to support a springboard and then, Mario-like, we jump to the next level, suddenly baffled by the ability to work tools in ways we never thought of. That said, from what (little) I know, his version where a mutation sets off on it’s own in the timeline somewhere, a Prodigal Son made good, seems to be easier to prove. Once upon a time, we had brains that were smaller. Then they were bigger, like ‘ta-dah!’ Something may have led up to that–and my guess is that a great many things did–but at some point a wild mutation branched us off.

It is my Dad’s contention that this is what will happen to the human race but on at a consciousness level, if we’re going to survive. I like that idea for a lot of reasons, not least important being that I like survival. I also like that the language is inclusive; a higher consciousness doesn’t care if you’re religious or not. Misses the point: it’s strictly about you, only better. More successful, evolutionarily, than before.

And what (little) I’ve been told about evolution is that frequently, the species that gets along the best, is the most successful.

My forth sample is a let down. Something dirty on the back, maybe just too high a bitterness? Not much in the nose to speak of. Pass. I can’t get behind it.

He’s heading out tomorrow, off to do a work thing then back to Nevada where he’s currently residing. I hope he gets out of there. Nevada is no place for a higher consciousness to develop.

And I don’t care what you say: Fuck Las Vegas. It’s ugly and encourages the ugliest traits in us. It is a microcosm of what’s worst about America right now: a place where the rich get richer and the poor get fucked. Going to Vegas is a bit like living in the best part of a futuristic sci-fi movie, until you realize that nobody’s really happy and everyone’s trying to sodomize you and you’re really living Mad Max instead of Star Trek. Sure, you can manage there for a little while, until you see how nobody is really having fun or any fun they are having is coming at the expense of someone else’s dignity or is happening in the strange personal vaccum that one could get anywhere seedy…and is frequently condemned, like gay bathhouses.

Not that it should be: I think we’d all be happier if we could get laid in humane, positive, fun ways more often but I’m going entirely off the rails at this point, or quite near doing so. Let’s just move on.

My final taster, this is the prize. Creamy and carmely, like a liquid candy apple, I like it quite a bit. It’s the Summer Solstice Cerveza and I’m totally willing to say you should try this. It’s good.

Dad wants peanuts. I want another beer. I think it’s a good time to say goodnight. You have a safe trip Dad. Glad to have you around.