I have to admit, of the things I would see coming, a Brewmaster Brewing Simulator was not on that list.

Probably because I’m more action-oriented in my choice of games, but also I don’t quite understand any game that replicates a real life task. That’s ok! They are for someone else.

I will be interested in the reviews though, just to see how it turns out.

Also, I want to get this posted so my friends know I’ve seen this.

Summer Series #7

Hopworks's Ferocious IPA in a glass on a table outside

Hopworks’s Ferocious IPA claims to be a citrus affair, but I don’t pick it up from the nose.

That might be because at The Lodge, they serve you beers in pre-chilled glasses. A proper dive bar practice. My experience is that chilled things tend to blunt sensory experiences.

Also: I’m on a patio that has a lot of ashtrays on it and that scent is everywhere.

On the other hand, a couple sips and the Ferocious shows it’s citrus off well enough. The finish is very bright and pleasantly bitter, offset by the initial malt flavors. Nothing too sweet but there’s a nice interplay going on.

The Lodge is located on Powell boulevard proper, which also substitutes as Highway 26, and as with my drink at Lents Bottle & Tap, the presence of cars is something one cannot ignore. The kitch of the patio-longhorn skulls, wagon wheels, old lumber mill saws hanging-cannot blunt the presence of vehicles just thirty feet from me.

I walked to this place, as I’m someone who enjoys stretching his legs but this experience is partly what I mean when I say that drinking outside is for barbarians. I am supposed to have a respite from the world. Cars are…not a respite from the world. They are many things-intrusive, dangerous, a ticket to freedom, a sad necessity-but if you’re in one, you are by necessity engaging with the world.

Don’t take all of this to mean that I dislike the patio here. It’s sheltered, well lit, well protected from most of the elements. It’s got a vibe, which is more than many outdoor spots can say.

But I can’t help notice that it doesn’t shield you from the systems of the world. Or, maybe it is better it say that it cannot do that. We’ve built an entire country around the notion that we could have private fiberglass transportation missiles all unto ourselves to do whatever we want with. Mostly though, we’re speeding to get to a stoplight.

It is a certainty to note that America would look completely different if we had made alternative decisions about how to get around. This is especially prevalent in the West, where massive open spaces still exist.

What concerns me at this point is that all of the signs point to a future that doesn’t revolve around cars. At least, if we want a future worth living in.

Are we going to insist that things don’t change, or are we going to try and face it bravely and embrace something new?

Could go either way, honestly. What worries me is that the optimistic odds might be 50/50.

See, I wouldn’t be so dour if I was inside.

As I’m finishing up my beer, I notice that the music has changed-when I sat down, it was Clash era punk, now it’s En Vogue era R&B. I look over my shoulder and there’s the bartender who served me, done for the day, a glass of whiskey and soda in one hand, cigarette in the other.

Well, I did come out to be with the people again.

Common Ales: Ninkasi’s Solar Cruiser

Ninkasi's Solar Cruiser in a glass on kitchen countertop, next to a bottle of Solar Cruiser.

The nose is nice but I can’t place it. A little floral? It’s not very strong, at least to my senses. When I read the label, the tasting notes suggest melon and that clicks; a flavor I’ve never been really high on, nor sensed very well. I don’t hate this but it doesn’t leave much impression.

I pick the melon up more in the middle of the beer. There’s also a bready quality from the malts, which helps offset the finishing bitterness, which is crisp but strong. It doesn’t linger long but I definitely know it’s there.

It’s a solid beer but it’s mining flavors I don’t like. It’s refreshing, but it isn’t for me.


While I don’t expect everyone who reads my blog to share my values, I would hope that someone who reads frequently does care about beer and the production thereof.

Which means stories like this one are going to be of relevance. I’d read that German breweries were facing a CO2 shortage a few weeks ago, and foolishly I did not think: that’s coming to America, soon.

But I clearly should have. It’s an interconnected world and we’ve done a lot of damage to it, which is coming back to bite us.

Here’s to hoping we can defang that beast.

Summer Series #6/Second Pint Internet Archive

Hammer & Stitch's amber ale, in a pint glass outside of Proper Pint

The nose on Hammer & Stitch’s Amber ale is phenomenal. A little fruity, a little malty, it almost seems like the quintessential beer scent.

And it’s a tasty beverage to boot. Very subtle, with the darker malts coming in later, and a finishing crispness that makes this quaffable ale quaff.

Sitting at the Proper Pint, I realize that I’m running out of spaces that are close to home. It’s time to adventure, while the adventuring is possible. I don’t want to waste time going to spots that don’t have someplace to enjoy my beer outside, though. I suppose I’ll have to do some research.

One of the nice things about going out is that I have options. Proper Pint has a solid 16 beers for me to chose from, and a few ciders too. Not that I wasn’t picking from a selection in a fridge beforehand, but I can make more spur of the moment decisions. I appreciate that.

The pub is quiet today. If I wasn’t under blogging rules, I’d probably consider drinking inside, as the indoors is populated by 3 people, including the barkeep.

But a promise is a promise. I generally believe that a person is only as good as their word-because the actions they take stem from what they tell you. I see it time and time again, in good people and bad. While Maya Angelou’s quote ‘when someone shows you who they are the first time, believe them’ is generally used to warn people away, there is a case to be made for trusting good folks.

I told you I’d sit outside. It’s a nice day-if I’m going to keep my word, let’s make it a word that is easy to keep, right?

Today’s second pint is going to the Internet Archive organization.

Common Ales: Pfriem’s Hazy IPA

Note: this is how it is done. You tell me it’s a hazy, and I now expect certain things, so I don’t feel screwed out of my money.

Nose is excellent; like getting a grapefruit twist-oil off the skin. That’s quite different than my typical experiences with the style.

The middle though doesn’t seem to have a lot of body, which leaves the finish on this beer. And it tilts just a smidge too far into pith for my liking.

Despite that, I am noticing some complexity, too.. There isn’t just grapefruit, but also a bit of lemony sweetness in there as well. I might just be picking up a little lime, too? This is wild for me, having that kind of dimension in this beer.

Am I 100% in on this beer? No, but do I recommend it, especially for people who like or are on the fence about the style? Absolutely! It will give you something to chew on, one way or another.

Summer Series #5

Block 15’s Science on deck today, coming from Lents Bottle and Tap.

Block 15's Science! IPA, in a glass on a counter outside Lent's Bottle & Tap

I’ve been a patron of Lents since just before the pandemic started, and during the Front Porch series often bought beers from their fridge to take home and write about. They’re a local, and one I’m glad to have in the neighborhood.

It’s the sort of place where I can arrive at the right time and have it be very, very calm, and know when the lively hours are so I can indulge in those as I please.

Last week I mentioned doing the work-work that I have taken from someone else, work that will be taken from me. I mention this frequently here and since today’s outside space is just me, standing on the street, Foster’s evening traffic as background noise, I thought I’d give a little time talking about what that means.

The way I look at it, there are chores and there is work. Chores are the tasks you have to do to maintain. This might be taking a shower, cleaning the kitchen, getting a good night’s sleep-routine, would be part of what chores are. Something that if you don’t do, life gets a lot more difficult but if you do spend 20 minutes here or there, you find life gets a bit easier.

But it mostly keeps the status quo. Stasis.

Work is when you are trying to do something more. This might include reading books by people who aren’t like you, going to therapy, having conversations with people that aren’t easy, organizing folks to accomplish a task.

Not all work is good-there were people who organized to create statues to white supremacists. The metaphor isn’t a perfect one.

But I think real work means risk of some kind. A challenge to oneself to be something other than what they are. Plus, there any number of philosophies that offer ideas on what makes a better life; you’ve got options offered by people who’ve done the work before you.

Work isn’t necessarily the same for everyone, either! Which is, unfortunately, why I can’t tell you what your work is. I just believe that when you’re doing it, there will be a response to it-one that suggests you’re on the right path.

And since you won’t always know, or always stay on the right path, some of that work will involve change.

The Science! Has a bit of a haze to it, but the flavor profile leans piney. I can’t say that it’s a hazy. It’s got a pleasantly hoppy finish, and at the very, very end of the beer it starts to dry out. Really interesting stuff!

Keep At It

I got a friend who just wants to keep politics out of his life.

And, as this article reminds me, that is a fine way to have shitty things overrun your life.

Because even though that article is about the sexism and toxic workplace of Tired Hands, that status quo returned because it lacked the collective action to change the environment there.

You know, the kind of thing politics does.


I had always been lead to understand that the difficulties in getting craft beer across state lines had to do with the legality of distributors on a federal level.

Turns out, there’s some state involvement as well. It’ll be neat to see how things work out, from either an educational perspective (the breweries are unsuccessful but I learn why) or a…different educational perspective (the breweries are successful and I get to try more beer).