#cherry Archives – PorchDrinking.com
You know the scene in Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure where he’s saving pets from the burning pet store, and he keeps passing over the snakes because they gross him out? Eventually he bites the bullet, grabs the snakes and runs out screaming. Sometimes that’s how I feel about the Sours in my cellar. I know I’m going to drink them all eventually, but aren’t there any Barrel-Aged Stouts I can rescue first?
That’s probably a little dramatic. Just like with Sours, some snakes are pretty cool. I used to have an empty field by my house where we’d go and collect garter snakes to take to school and put them in teachers’ desks. That’s not really relevant other than now you know I was kind of a dick as a kid. I’m sure I’ve outgrown that through the years. Anyway, to push myself out of my cozy, hoppy, comfort zone, several times a year I like to sit down and get personal with a bottle of funky tartness. This month’s offering to the Sour Gods is Karl Strauss‘ fan-favorite Queen of Tarts.
Surly Brewing Darkness has always been a highly coveted stout come the fall. The Russian imperial stout typically is available in a non barrel-aged version and a barrel-aged version. To change things up, Surly announced three variants, each in a different type of barrel and available only at Darkness Day.
As a kid, I loved Halloween and all the teeth-rotting candy that came along with it. Warheads and Sour Patch Kids were my favorites. In the same time period, my parents (in an attempt to prove to me that beer was gross) let me take a sip of a certain domestic lager. It worked, for a while, because I still remember that sip of beer and it was disgusting. But palates change, and now of course I know how delicious craft beer can be. My love of mouth-puckering sour treats, however, was left behind long ago with my last pair of Bugle Boy jeans.
Things of late have been eventful for me, dear readers. A new home, a newborn nephew, and now my first foray into SweetWater Brewing Co.’s The Woodlands Project. The Woodlands opened its doors around this time last year (October 2016) and ever since has served as HQ for SweetWater’s barrel-aging program where they produce small-batch “funky, sour, or otherwise awesome beers.”
I’m not normally a cider guy. I’m spoiled by good non-alcoholic cider in Michigan, and the different taste just confuses me. However, it’s the only type of craft beer that my boyfriend seems to actively enjoy (that’s in not small part to Vandermill of Grand Rapids coming to the Fall Detroit beer festival last year). Therefore, I ventured this summer in order to find something we can both enjoy. And the search came just in time. As The Rio Olympics pointed out in their bummer presentation, it’s historically hot and you gotta find a non-AC blasting way to keep cool on the strings of unbearably hot day. Delightfully, Cherry Creek Winery has decided to branch out from the grape game and created Dancing Elephants Hard Cherry Apple Cider.
Botanicals are seemingly having their place in the sun right now. Plants are more popular than ever in America, with people ordering kale in unlikely places, foraging for wild plants to eat, lining up to witness Corpse Flowers blooming country-wide and enjoying some previously illegal ones recreationally in four states. It was only a matter of time before they started showing up in our beer.
Christmas is a time of joy and laughter and good feelings. It’s also a time where one freaks out thinking of perfect gift ideas, is over-commited to attend too many parties in 3 weeks, and deals with high-stress travel plans that all conspire to drive you insane. When I was 13, my family took over hosting duties for my mom’s 7 siblings and their family. By Christmas Eve, we weren’t speaking to each other and the only carols I heard were the frantic string instruments in my head like the score to Martha, Inc.
Many people shy away from fruit beers. They just don’t think the two should ever mix, never to dance the delicate art of brewing. But, not all great beers have to be pale and bitter, and a little sweet goes a long way. With summer just around the bend, folks are eager to get out and enjoy the warm cosmic rays. And, although all of these beers (save for one) come in 22oz or larger bottles, here is a phenomenal six pack that will make you second guess what great beer can be.