Tag Archives: iron goat brewing

Spokane 2014 pt 1

While I was on vacation in Spokane, I didn’t spend it forgoing beer. That would be silly. And potentially stupid, as visiting Spokane is an activity I enjoy but requires heroic doses of heavy metal and steady drips of beer to endure. Fortunately for me, craft brewing is pretty much everywhere now so there were some new beers to try! And that’s why I go anywhere, now.

So here are my notes on what I drank. I’m saving the best for last, which will appear Friday.

River City Vanilla Bourbon Stout (picture)- has a smoky, wood nose, and the vanilla has a pretty solid undercurrent in the beer BUT there is a smoky finish too, coupled with a beer that is really thin for what I feel like a stout ought to bring.

Raspberry Wheat by Icicle. Nose is sour, off-white wine fruit scent that isn’t bad but it isn’t encouraging. The flavor itself is thin, without much in the way of malt at all and then moves to just a raspberry syrup note to the end. I just can’t get behind it.

There isn’t much in the way of a nose on the Iron Goat Impaler IIPA (picture)-I fault the glasses here. Please; give me the pour I have paid for, but provide glasses that allow the beer to have a head and give me the nose the beer deserves. Because this beer is a solid one; there is a strong caramel middle to help set up the citrus bitterness that is quite punchy at the end. This is the third of three Iron Goat beers I have had so far (including a blonde, which didn’t excite me, and a pale that did) and I have to say, they’re doing something right.

The Goatmeal stout (my fourth beer from Iron Goat) is an excellent porter. It is not a stout; it’s thin, and at 5.4%, the alcohol content isn’t there to provide that kind of density that I feel a stout should have. That said; it is super tasty, with the cocoa flavors and dryness at the finish it’s really good. It just isn’t what I am expecting, so I have to knock it.

Where I Want To Go: Viking

I am here and I am not here.

I’m in Spokane for the week and with my sister, I’ve come to the Viking to hang out with people and catch up. My sister is here to do the same, except she’s going to dominate the shuffleboard table too.

What can I tell you about the Viking, really? It has no windows. It’s been around since my parents went to college and it’s been one of the few bars in Spokane to push craft beers of any sort , at least since I started drinking. It has a disturbing level of beer and sports pennants hanging from the every possible fixture that could have one attached. And they give you a bowl of free popcorn.

It’s that kind of place: the kind that might’ve considered being pretentious¬† but decided, eh, fuck it, here’s beer. So it’s not so bad, really.

I start out with a Sockeye porter which is pretty darn tasty but switch soon to Iron Goat’s pale ale, brought to me by my friend Aaron because he insists it’s the best beer there.¬† I don’t have cause to doubt him, as it’s very, very good. But Sockeye is good beer from Idaho! That is a kind of wonder unto itself.

Yet I am also not here. I am in Portland, I am telling my story to people who haven’t seen me in a while and my story isn’t new it isn’t in Spokane, either.¬† I do my best not to live in my story while I am telling it (it has been a rough year) but it is the nature of stories to compel us into the moment of their narrative.

So I ask for their stories instead. Businesses, moving, children, how to navigate a new or an old-but-new relationship, or any relationship, really; all kinds of things to discuss. It is a good evening, with (mostly) good beers. I’ll tell you all about what I had this week, promise.

I don’t get a picture of any of my drinks this evening though, which is disappointing. It is an oversight but that happens when visiting.