Monday, January 24, 2011

Atwater Brewery; Vanilla Java Porter

Vanilla Java Porter has all the characteristics of it’s namesake style. The color is so dark brown that it is almost black and the flavor is reminiscent of a Black Lager. V.J.P. doesn’t have the showy head of foam like many Porters but is does have a big, deep, nutty coffee flavor. Delicious!

This one was bottled in April of 2010 and hasn’t been sitting around long enough to lose the carbonation, but all three of the V.J.Ps that I’ve opened this winter where light on the bubbles. Atwater certainly has a great recipe for this Porter and the low carbonation is fitting. Each sip is a mouthful of java flavor. I don’t taste the vanilla which must be adding some sweetness to the powerful coffee flavor. Vanilla Java Porter is a real sipper and is a good bit more bitter than a Fort Collins Chocolate Stout, Guiness or Magic Hat Howl. On a scale of 1 to 5, I give Vanilla Java Porter 3 and a half pints.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Love List

limpery over at the blog Aldeboran has posted a list of his love interests. This isn't a list about potential mates but a list of what he loves about life and I'm inspired to follow his example.

Things I love about life:

I love my wife.
I love my family and friends; the Creels, the Morgans, the Gollihers, the Hamners & the Browns.
I love my stepsons, my granddaughters and their mom.
I love our cat.
I love my new friends in East Tennessee and all my old, and new, friends on Facebook.
I love freedom.
And, I love beer.

This is the short list version; I may add some more when they come to mind.

Oh, of course, I love reading.

Monday, January 17, 2011

We must have more beer on Monday!

On Christmas day I discovered a new beer available on the shelves at Walgreens Pharmacy. I don't usually buy beer from Walgreens but, it has been proven, that I'm a sucker for snazzy packaging and a bargain. This beer is Big Flats 1901 Lager. I should also mention that I have a weakness for old style American beers too. As much as I complain about Budweiser and refuse to have Coors Light in my home, small house beers like Big Flats remind me of my college days when cheap was a good indication that we'd have beer to drink.

The Big Flats label has a red ribon which lists it as a "Lager Beer." Well, a pils is a lager and this is definitely a pilsner style brew rather than a premium lager. Big Flats forms a nice head when poured into a pint glass but there's no head retention.. The flavor is the standard cereal grains and the sweet taste seems to increase with each sip. I'm beginning to see where the tradition of the frosted mug originated, the sweet taste seems to increase as the beer warms. I have had several of these beers over the past few weeks and I believe that Big Flats is best when consumed straight out of the can. There's no hops flavor to mention, just good ol' lawn mowin' beer.

Now, I have written about mediocre beers in three of my four beer reviews. Beginning next Monday I will limit the beer entries to quality brews, I promise. Next week’s beer will be a porter from an American micro-brewery.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Winter Wonderland at minimum wage.

The weather outside is frightful and all that good mess. It was beginning to snow as I was leaving my temp job recently and one of my co-workers commented, "let's hope it sticks." I'm thinking to myself, "we just worked two short weeks in a row so you people just make less than your requisite $265. a week but you wanna miss more work?" As the guy who made comment is standing out in the snow, waiting for his carpool to arrive?

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Happy New Year at minimum wage.

At my “regular” job I’m a Merchandising Representative. If the title sounds snazzy, I’m here to explain the deception of snazzy titles. Merchandising Rep. only means that I’m employed as a whippin’ boy for a third party vendor. Simply, my employer sells their product to a big box retailer and I travel to these stores to merchandise and, or represent the product. Too further complicate matters; I’m employed by a nursery, a vendor and grower of flowering plants and other landscape material.

Of course, flowers and landscape plants only sell during warm weather, so I’ve taken a job through a Temp. Service too supplement my income this winter. This job is at the distribution warehouse for a local media wholesaler. My co-workers are also employees of the Temp. Agency and they are nothing if not consistent. They are consistently entertaining, to me, and consistently criminally negligent. (More on criminal negligence later.)

At the warehouse we “sort” the media all day. This is much like sorting produce, putting apples with apples etc., but the media is sorted by the title. One day we were sorting some travel guides, the title was Barcelona. I made some comment like; “I would love to visit Barcelona,” to which my co-worker replied, “I’ve never heard of it.”

If I could only write as consistently as these people entertain me I'd have a real bang-up blog.