Sunday, August 26, 2007

Waiter, There's a Beer in My Glass!

I may not have mentioned it, but last month I celebrated my fortieth birthday.

Last week the first installment of a three-month gift that keeps on giving arrived in a large, heavy, unmarked box that contained 12 bottles of joy. Yes, my pals the Geigers had given me a delicious run at the beer-of-the-month club. Actually, it's 4 different beers each month, times three.

Since I am an occasional beer consumer, this present made me quite happy.

Tonight I cracked the first of the four brews sent my way, a tasty "black Bavarian style" lager from Sprecher microbrewery in Milwaukee.

Steve, some guy on The Opinionated Beer Page, wrote the following about this beer:

I traveled 1000 miles to find this black lager. It's almost stout-like, with its dark chocolate background, slightly sweet flavor, and dark maltiness. I am dying to go to Milwaukee to check out this brewery (among others). It'd be like a trip to the Holy Land for the Pope. This was made for winter nights. (1/31/2004)
I am not a connoisseur, by any standards, so when I read the description from Sprecher:

This intensely dark Kulmbacher style lager (currently entering contests as a strong porter) has a superb malt complexity with the distinctive flavors and aromas of coffee, caramel and chocolate. A renowned smoothness and a creamy, tan head make it a world champion.

I say, "Okay, I get that."

All I know is that I am quite often in the mood for a dark, thick brew with a sweet taste that reminds me of years ago at Crown City Brewery in Pasadena, when one of my favorite beers was a Watney's Cream Stout (review here). Alas, Watney's cream stout hasn't passed my palate since the early 1990's, and a message board here intones the bad news: "Apparently when Watney's was sold they stopped production on several lines, including this one. Shame on them!"

So since I apparently will never have one of these again,

this Sprecher black lager was a delicious reminiscence. I am hardly qualified to talk about hops and malt complexity, but I am qualified to say that I liked this beer a lot. Anyone missing those good old cream stouts of Watneys might find an adequate replacement in this delicious beer. It's dark complexity of taste is welcome in my beer glass any day!

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