7pm Cold Seeps In

It took me a minute or two to decide but eventually I went for the Epic Double Skull doppelbock. Like sucking on a chocolate Popsicle, this beer offers me the essence of coca but not the solid. Also, and this is very, very weird but my first reference is a grape sucker, the cheap kind you’d get from the doctors office after a shot.

There are things I can explain but this is not one of them. I usually like Epic’s work but this beer? I can’t say it’s bad but I am hard pressed to recommend it, too. This dopplebock is not improving with warmth, either. It should be the perfect beer for a cold evening like this but it tastes thin and is coupled with a sweetness that is making me thirst for an ale with more body to it.

I think the holiday tuckered me out. Even for a Monday I feel a bit less animated, less engaging. More likely to say something I shouldn’t or, more exactingly, use words I do not mean to get across an idea that is dying on its feet.

Might be the chill in the air. Winter is finally descending onto Portland with clear skies and northern winds. It’s the kind of thing that sucks life away, down south, until I can fortify myself with scarves, whiskey, women and a steely eye.

I opt for a small Block 15 brown ale and I already feel better: this beer doesn’t taste as thin. Is that expectations or legit flavor making a case for itself?

Times like this, I wish I wasn’t drinking alone. Don’t get me wrong, I like these moments of contemplation but comparing notes when facing strange flavors is what makes this experience interesting.

Fortunately for me, someone comes in, asking for an IPA and weeds through her choices with that bartender to settle on the Pelican fresh hop ale. She’s visiting from Cleveland and loves the style; I tell her she’s in the right place. Wrong time, though: if she really wanted a bounty of IPAs, September would have been the time to arrive, with not only the traditional ipa bounty but the fresh hop ales too.

She tells me that there is a really good beer scene in Cleveland and somehow I’m not terribly surprised. A city like that, in the middle of the country is ripe for influences from all over and has an opportunity to bring the best ideas from everywhere to play. It may be a depressed place but where better to innovate?

It’s fun being an ambassador for Portland.

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7 thoughts on “7pm Cold Seeps In”

  1. I believe the essence of coca is usually snorted through the nose.

    That said, there’s not only a chill in the air, but a chill in the universe. Something is off for many of us; I don’t even want to leave the house most days.

    1. Which is why it shouldn’t appear as essence in liquid! There’s no there, there.

      But yes. We’ll need to work some mojo to get past what’s starting to snake into our psyches.

  2. You are right on the mark about the cold, my man. It just sucks the life right out of me when the wind is going like that. Time to bust into some high alcohol stouts…

    1. Interesting, since I usually like Southern Tier’s stuff. Was there something particularly odd about it or did it just have a flavor profile that wasn’t going to appeal to a broad range?

      1. More the later. If you have had their Pumking, it tasted like it was going in that direction as far as seasonal spices, but to me it didn’t quite come together. It tasted a little, I don’t know, gimmicky I guess. A little to flat and sweet for me.

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