Friday Four

Friday, May 30, 2014

1. The Santa Fe Brewing Company has helped me rediscover stouts with its Imperial Java Stout:
This is the kind of beer that gives the word "stout" a reputation.  Extra generous quantities of barley malt, followed by vigorous fermentation leaves this "imperial" heavy weight with 8% alcohol A.B.V. and a body as full as chocolate bread pudding. A complimentary and complex array of bitter notes comes from potent American hops, earthy British hops,  black-roasted malts and, of course, coffee. Santa Fe Brewing Company uses only top-quality ingredients like organically grown East Timor coffee beans blended with New Guinea coffee beans,  locally roasted by Ohori's Coffee House. Its heavenly flavor and aroma can't be beat or imitated. [minor edits]
As the two sides of the can suggest, this beer is great anytime, and strikes me as suitable for viewing live English Premier League matches.

2. Speaking of craft beers, a humorist notes the rise of of an industry:
But what would really surprise my younger self would be the names of the beers at the local brewpub. Oh, yeah, I forgot: There weren't any local brewpubs when I was young. In 1977 there was one craft brewery in the U.S. Last year there were 2,768 of them. They sold about 15 million barrels of beer, which seems like a lot, but it's only about 8 percent of all the beer sold. Still, that's 8 percent the giant brewers didn't sell. And the small brewers did it without spending a gazillion dollars on Super Bowl advertising, without running 57 commercials on 57 channels every night, without have to hire expensive actors to be in those commercials, without having to feed and pay the vet bills on a bunch of giant draft horses.
Craft brewing is pretty much why I drink beer at all. During my college days, when those beers and imports were rare, I wasn't a beer drinker. A trip to Germany helped me realize that "the real thing", as I called it then, might be worth looking into.

3. One of Pumpkin's aunts was impressed by her quick wit over the weekend: During some  time on the beach, she admonished her that eating sand "wasn't fun". But Mrs. Van Horn had just brought some Cheetos by, so my daughter immediately replied, "But eating Cheetos is."

4. I have to note for posterity that Little Man, possibly the happiest baby on earth, has two of the cutest mannerisms. He squeals when delighted and he has an open-mouthed, intense breathing mode, often accompanied with a smile, when he's happy about or interested in something.

Of course, there's no telling what will interest or excite a baby, so I often get these for odd things. It never fails to crack me up when, upon starting a trip up or down stairs, I get the squeal.

Oh, and I almost forgot the amusing way I woke for two mornings running, after Mrs. Van Horn brought the boy to sleep in our bed during the wee hours: I woke to bumps against my back. Rolling over to see what it was, I cracked an eye open to see the baby, smiling radiantly. Each time, he immediately made a quick grab for my eye.

-- CAV


mtnrunner2 said...

Some of my favorite stouts, in case you have not tried any of these: North Coast Rasputin, Victory Storm King, Ska Hibernal Vinifera Stout, Deschutes Obsidian, Great Divide Yeti. Some of those are imperials, so watch out, but good stuff.

Gus Van Horn said...

All but two of those you list are new to me: Rasputin is an old favorite and Vinifera Stout is a more recent discovery.

I look forward to trying the others. Thanks!