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Mental Health Day/Second Pint Together Rising

I had a glass of 54-40’s Crushed Velvet IPA and my brain just refused to talk.

So I’m giving myself a break for today and letting you know: the second pint goes to Together Rising.

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Round Two #16\Second Pint STAND

Occidental’s fresh hop lager is chosen because I feel as if I have done far more work on a Sunday than should be expected. I haven’t, but it feels that way.

Occidental fresh hop lagerFor me, fresh hop beers are the same as regular beers except for one thing: a strong grassy note either in the nose or on the finish. Fresh cut green grass has a remarkably refreshing quality-a reminder of summers and jobs done, a chance to sit down under shade while someone else paints the fence, ’cause you’ve convinced them that fence painting is the funnest thing ever.

The nose on this ale is pretty standard, a little dank, a whiff of pine, but nothing too intense. The malts aren’t intruding, as appropriate and that leaves the finish, which isn’t bitter but that grassy quality is strong enough that a little more and I might even consider the flavor vegetal.

So, pretty well done. It errs on the side of sweetness, but not so far that I regret my choice. It’s a little strange, since it’s near fall and I feel like this is a great summer weather beer, but since we’re having a resurgent summer, it works.

The second glass I take my time to breathe in. There’s a spicy quality to the hop note I’d missed before and I’m wondering if they used dry hops too, to help punch up the nose.

If so, that was a good choice because that scent gives the beer more complexity than it would have without it.

If these are all fresh hops, then I’m genuinely surprised since I didn’t think that fresh hops would impart the same kind of intensity; my experience with fresh hop beers is that the hop quality is usually a little muted.

But without that complexity, this Pilsner would definitely suffer. As it it stands, I’m starting to get a little weary of the finish: it isn’t flawed, by any means. I just have to wonder if part of the reason I am not a fan of fresh hop ales is because that finish is pretty much the same for every beer, since the fresh hop quality is what they want to emphasize.

I suppose I’ll have to drink more to really suss that out. Someone’s gotta do it.

Today’s second pint goes to Stand For Families Free Of Violence.

The In Between

Brown/porter homebrew picI was shooting for a brown and it’s…almost there? The flavor profile might be a little strong and the beer might be a touch dark. I just can’t quite seem to hold back on the dark malts, I suppose. Maybe next time half of each.

Nose has a pleasant chocolate quality and while it doesn’t fade out completely, it doesn’t come on too strong, either.

Still, this makes a decent enough porter wannabe. On the sweeter side, with the chocolate flavors but a tiny bit of roasted malt on the finish to shore it up. And it finishes drier than I’d expect, too. Quite drinkable, definitely a candidate for drinking another.

Brew date: 5/12/19

Steeping grains
1 lb Chocolate
1 lb Red X
1 Lb Carabrown

Fermentables: 7 lb ExLME

Hops
1 oz Saaz @ 60
.5 oz Saaz @ 30
.5 oz Saaz @5

Yeast: Imperial Tartarn (2nd use)

OG: 1.059
FG: 1.014

Secondary 5/25
Bottled 5/27

ABV: 6.1%

The Mulligan

Sorry; the week caught up to me and I didn’t have a chance to get a post properly prepared. I’d rather beg off for a week than put out something halfassed, so I’m going to take a day off. Regular posts still Wed-Fri and back to the theme Monday!

Whatever You Say 63/Second Pint SotR

I’ve managed to get six friends to come and see Avengers: Endgame with me, and we start off meeting at the Hawthorne Hop House. One of them is having the Lagunita’s Waldo IIPA and I think we all remember what I thought of that.

Elysian Split Shot stoutAnother is having the Elysian Split Shot espresso milk stout, served on nitro. How the heck can I say no to that? Look at this beer!

For the most part, this beer delivers an it’s name and looks; espresso and milk flavors all the way down, and the nitro pour means that it’s very, very smooth. As the Split Shot warms up, a boost of caramel comes into the nose The finish roughs it up though, bringing a slightly acrid note. It’s faint and it doesn’t spoil the beer, but it does mar the overall experience.

It’s the only quality that does however.

Making and keeping friends as an adult is challenging. It takes a concerted effort to spend time with people, keep spending time with them, and trying to accept them as they change. Having six people who were willing to set aside time from their lives to come and see a summer blockbuster with me feels really nice. Like maybe I’m doing something better than I used to be.

We laugh a lot in the time before the movie and once there, found ourselves enthralled with the conclusion to one of the epic stories of our era. We even get a little time to talk about it after the movie…but honestly I think we were all a little overwhelmed. I certainly was! It’s not easy to take in the final chapter like that all at once.

But it wouldn’t have been the same without them, and after having more misses than hits on this theme, it is very nice to be out with friends and having a beer.

Today’s second pint goes to the Sisters of the Road cafe.