Tuesday, June 1, 2010

More from the Beerathalon

Unfortunately I have a leg injury and will be unable to participate in the first event (not pictured here) of the Beerathalon this week. I'll have to make up for it by hammering the second event.

The Beautiful Beer

With the World Cup looming I've been scouting appropriate viewing venues. RiRa was the go to spot in 2006, and remains a favorite for 2010. The two Allagash offerings pictured here were recommended by Joe, the man behind the stick at RiRa. They are both terrific beers: the Malone is a Belgian/IPA fusion that is bold, tart, complex, and delicious. The Four has four of everything--hops, malt, and flavor. Earthy balance. 10+% alcohol. Packs a punch but is deceptively smooth on the way down.

It's going to be a good tournament!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Beerathalon 3 Approaches

The next chapter of the 2010 beerathlon series will be held on Wednesday, May 19 (tomorrow). As a reminder, a beerathalon is a uniquely local multi-sport event that combines a hard 5K run around the Back Cove and the consumption of two beer at the Great Lost Bear. Join us: the running starts at 6:00 PM. Sign up here. Then head to the Great Lost Bear and order up a couple from the world class beer list.

The Problem With Authenticity

Two of my favorite spots to eat, Enzo and El Rayo, suffer from authenticity. Specifically, El Rayo, which offers terrific tacos at very reasonable prices, serves only Mexican beer. Mexican beer spawned tequila and the drug trade before finding its niche as an alternative to Montezuma's Revenge inducing water. El Rayo's beer list is exclusively Mexican, and the best of the lot--Sol (Sol is the beer Corona would be if Corona had any flavor)--is a bad beer. At El Rayo recently I was forced to drink tequila, with Sebago Lake water back. The tequila flight coupled with a flight of tacos made for a nice dining/drinking experience, though. Nonetheless, the tacos begged for a strong local beer, HSA or Full Throttle would complement perfectly.

Enzo is the new bar attached to Otto, the Congress Street pizzeria. The bar features Otto's delicious pizza, a lot of wine, and a grand total of three beer. One of the beer choices is Morreti, the best of Italy's mass produced beers. Italian beer is why Italians drink wine. It's awful. The other two options are the mediocre Gritty Vacationland and the slightly above average Harpoon IPA. My pizza slice was delicious: basil and tomato topping on a perfectly prepared crust. As for my beverage choice, I picked authenticity and did what an Italian would do: I drank the house red. A nice combination.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


The Downtown Lounge has long been one of my favorite watering holes. A little worn at the heels, with a rode hard and put away wet feel that is my tavern equivalent of comfort food. A limited but above average beer selection that generally includes HSA, my go to beer (sadly, the HSA has been replaced by Geary's Summer, probably until the weather sucks again). Good food, professionally prepared. Friendly but not overbearing bar staff. Regulars, who settle in and order their regular with a nod, then read or watch TV or chat quietly with other regulars. It's a terrific place.

And it just got a whole lot better! The food specials--items like tacos, Greek/chicken/steak salads, burgers--are half off until 8 pm! So, a real meal for less than McDonalds prices. Take last night: Research Assistant and I polished off a Greek Salad and an order of pork tacos, washed down with 3 Long Trail IPAs, and the bill was 20 bucks. The food was delicious. I'll be back, maybe tonight!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Buy Local

Every purchase is political.
Every purchase affects the environment.
Every purchase is your conscience.
Every purchase is a vote.
Every purchase is a prayer.
Every purchase matters.
Buy local. Buy little. Buy organic.
Live in the world you want to create.
Create the world you want to live in.

by motivateufatbastard.

Friday, April 30, 2010

The Perfect Storm

The nonfiction book about the fishing crew out of Gloucester, Massachusetts that inspired both a George Clooney movie and an idiom has little in common with the best beer I've had in 2010 other than both originated in Gloucester.

Actually though, Cape Ann Brewing's fabulous Greenhorn Double IPA, cask conditioning, a pull tap at the GLB, a tulip glass, and my mouth formed a perfect storm-like chain of circumstances and events that resulted in my enjoying a beer as much as I have at any point this year. The Greenhorn (I don't like the name--because I don't like green as a beer descriptor--but brewer T.J. Peckham says it refers to first time fishermen, and the similarity between the rookie fisherfolk and the woobly knees effect this beer can have on the novice drinker) is more balanced than most double IPAs, and the cask smooths out the hops a bit more. The result is an incredibly easy drinking double that is still bursting with hoppy flavor. It's a complex beer that goes down like a session beer.

Brewer Peckham also told me that Cape Ann has a brew pub, staffed entirely with current and former and itinerent fishermen, in keeping with Gloucester's heritage. It's 106 miles from here, by land. I might have to go by sea!