Ultimate 6er | Surviving the Nor’easter(s)
Quinn. Riley. Skylar. It sounds like a millennial roll call. Well, in this case, it is the winter storm roll call of 2018. If you live on the East Coast and you have looked outside lately, or if you enjoy watching The Weather Channel as much as my mom does, then you have seen the craziness of weather slamming the Northeast U.S.
The snow, the rain, the crazy amount of wind—it needs to stop. Who is with me? One day I’m running outside with a tee shirt on because we were blessed with a 60 degree day and the next day winter has come back to reel its ridiculously cold head. Thankfully there is beer to get us through these crazy weather predicaments. I have six beers that can help all of us get through the next impending Nor’easter (we have already had three, you know another one is coming!).
I consider these beers the “ Six Stages of the Nor’easter.”
The Calm Before the Storm
Kamikaze Kaleidoscope | Dark Horse Brewing Co.
Witbier | ABV: 5%
Stage 1 is almost like the denial stage, where you mock the forecast of impending doom. It could rain cats or we may experience a sharknado—no one seems to be quite sure. For that stage, it is good to enjoy a beer as light-hearted as our meteorological commentary. May I suggest the Kamikaze Kaleidoscope. This deliciously approachable wit, by Dark Horse Brewing, has an aroma that is light and citrusy, with a hint of clove spice. The tart, citrusy flavors of the orange and lemon, with a very apparent wheat mouthfeel make this Wit a great start for what the weather channels are making seem like the end of days.
The Storm is Here and Now the Lights Are Flickering…
INCA | Saint Benjamin Brewing Co.
India-Style Cream Ale | ABV: 5.4%
Stage 2 reminds me of my childhood. When I was growing up, every time it even drizzled outside, the power would go out. I wish I was kidding. With every passing rain cloud you would hope for the best, but inevitably the power would be lost. With this storm, you come to realize that no matter where you are living, someone will always eventually lose power … and its probably going to be you.
Luckily, Philadelphia’s own St. Benjamin Brewing has a smooth style to help ease you right in to Stage 2. INCA is a re-imagined approach to a classic style. This hybrid Cream Ale has all of the nice qualities of a traditional Cream Ale, but with the added pop of the hops! The aroma is earthy and citrusy with a light foamy head. Medium-bodied, this beer had a deliciously light citrus hop finish with light bitterness, leaving you feeling refreshed.
Crap, Now the Lights Are Out!
Grand Cru Winter Reserve | Flying Fish Brewing Co.
Belgian-Style Golden Ale | ABV: 6.9%
Stage 3 is when you realize it’s official-you have no power and you are stuck. So long, Netflix marathon. (Don’t tell me you can just use your phone. You and I both know that your data and battery life will never be able to compete with your binging skills.)
Have no fear, Flying Fish is here! Their Grand Cru Winter Reserve is a Belgian-style Golden Ale with a warming aroma of malty banana sweetness. Your mouth will be filled with flavors of malt, banana and some spice, which will pair perfectly with your pantry full of nothing since you never went shopping.
Flying Fish describes this as the perfect after-dinner drink, but I say it is the perfect after-lunch drink sans the lunch since, again, you have no food.
How Did We Run Out of Batteries Already?!
Third Coast Old Ale | Bell’s Brewery
American-Style Barleywine | ABV: 10.2%
Stage 4 is when you realize how unprepared you are. The flashlights won’t work, because, well you straight up forgot to buy more batteries. But seriously, how the heck did we go through so many batteries?! At this point, you are just hungry and you want a beer that will help to not only coat your stomach but to also numb your senses.
Thank goodness for Bell’s Brewery and their Third Coast Old Ale. This American-style Barleywine pours a beautiful deep red (or at least I think it does since its so dark in the house). The warming aroma of sweet maltiness is so inviting. You get flavors of rich caramel and prunes in the beginning, yet the finish is sharp with hoppy bitterness. I enjoy barleywines, so this was a nice treat and also the perfect bread substitute!
Should We Even Bother Shoveling?
Here Gose Nothin’ | Destihl Brewery
Leipzig-Style Gose Ale | ABV: 5.2%
Stage 5 is Stage Shovel. It is several hours into the storm and you know that driveway isn’t going to shovel itself. You need a beer that is going to awaken your senses and make you question why you never bought a snowblower.
So, crack open a Here Gose Nothin’, a Gose that really packs a punch. The pungent lemon citrus and sour aroma of the Gose, with a delectable golden hue, is what will wake your senses up. This super tart Gose has a nice body, full of lemon-lime and lactic sour. The finish of this Gose is of minerally sea salt, which will make you think of warm summer beaches, and not the sludge you are attempting to remove from atop your car.
The power is out, we have no bread, we can’t see a thing, it’s 5 degrees and I GIVE UP.
Backwoods Bastard | Founders Brewing Co.
Bourbon Barrel-Aged Scotch Ale | ABV: 11%
Welcome to Stage 6: The End. Backwoods Bastard is about the point where you have given up. You really want to try to put a fire in the fireplace and you want to try to get your camp griddle out so you can make a nice, warm dinner, but you just are done trying. This is the beer for when you basically just don’t care anymore. So you open your fridge again (quickly, because you don’t want your food to spoil) and you pull out a Backwoods Bastard Bourbon Barrel-Aged Scotch Ale.
The delicious sweetness of the roasted malts and the bitter fruity finish will be sure to cover up the taste of the toast you are burning on the oversized Yankee candle you were given on Christmas but were hoping to burn next winter. I enjoyed the smell of vanilla, smoke roasted malts and malt scotch-the aroma helps to relax you and help you forget that you won’t have power for days. Or was that caused by the 11% ABV? I guess we will never know.
This was my face by the end of the day.