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Pre-brew preview


I decided that I wanted to try a few beers before buying my next kit as I try to expand my beer palate. This was made easier by Hyvee’s mix-and-match section.

My mom only recently started drinking beer and is currently obsessed (that might be a bit of an embellishment)with all things lager.

At her suggestion, I tried a Pacifico Clara.

After I opened the bottle and we sat down for dinner, Shannon, my wife, took the first sip and didn’t immediately shake her head no in disapproval. To me,  this meant it wasn’t going to be a full-bodied, robust beer. I took a sip and my initial assessment was correct. Taste is a very personal thing, so I could sit here and tell you the beer was great or terrible and that would be my opinion. It would be neither right or wrong. I can tell you that when I drank it, I felt as though I’d had that beer before. It tastes like somebody poured a glass half full of Budweiser and topped it off with a Corona. It’s a light, crisp beer with a very light hoppy flavor. There’s very little to distinguish this beer from the countless other “American style lagers.”

Next up was a Schlafly coffee stout.

To preface this, I really like stout beers. I feel like the brewing process extracts more flavor from the grain in these darker beers and they don’t tend to be full of adjuncts, which–in my opinion–just muddy the taste. With that said, you better really like coffee if you’re going to enjoy this, uh, beer. Shannon was my guinea pig once again for the first taste. That did not go too well. She nearly spit it out and I thought, “wow, that’s going to be a flavorful beer!” She then described what she was tasting and nailed it. “Uh oh,” I thought. “This may not be good.” The only real reason I thought that is that Shannon is not typically the best at describing the subtle flavors a beer may possess, so if she is telling me what it tastes like and nailing it then it must be pronounced.

Wow. That thing taste like cold stale coffee poured into just enough beer to know that you’re drinking a beer. The beer may have been wonderful, but the overpowering flavor of coffee obscured almost all else. The flavor grew on me minutely as the beer warmed a bit, but I am thankful that I only bought one bottle. I will definitely not be selecting that one again. It’s a shame because I had high hopes for this beer. I’ll say it again; though, taste is personal so try this one if you’re feeling adventurous.

The last beer I drank wasn’t a new one, but one I hadn’t had in awhile: Samuel Adams Boston Lager.

This is a beer that is always very easy to drink. For a commercially-brewed beer, Sam Adams brews a very flavorful lager. It’s not overtly hoppy like an IPA, but you can taste the attention to detail when drinking this beer. As Sam Adams has grown larger, they haven’t sacrificed quality for a price point (at least not noticeably). I’d definitely consider brewing a Boston Lager clone from any of the supply stores with their kits. The kits may not be exact, but they’ll be a great starting point for any new brewer.

I’ve got a new kit in the mail right now, but I’ll save that for my next post. Cheers, everybody!

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About Todd Fuller

After a really long search, I found work that I feel is more relevant to my degree--technical writing. While it's not what I initially envisioned doing, it's actually been very enjoyable and rewarding work. I guess I feel like there is still more out there to do, so I've decided I will try the whole blogging thing again and resurrect this site. If anyone's still out there, enjoy and feel free to comment.

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