Thursday, November 7, 2013

Big Year Beers #583 - 585 (or "How I Became A Middle-Aged Hipster Douche Bag")

Tony's Darts Away was a Burbank, CA dive bar that several years back transformed into an awesome establishment which serves nothing but high quality, California-only beer.  My wife & I are on a vegan diet this week (working off the 12 lbs. of beef we consumed over the weekend in Santa Ynez), so Tony's was yesterday's perfect venue to accommodate my quest for new brews, considering they not only have the choicest taps in the Valley, but they also have a decent vegan menu.  Best of both worlds.

But prior to my adventure starting, as I walked in the door I noticed all of the high tables in front were occupied by white guys in their 30s & 40s, wearing plaid & flannel shirts, sporting beards or goatees, and thick rimmed glasses. 
Were they members of the Chris Dodge Look-Alike Club, all congregating to surprise me, and treat me to unlimited pours? 
Or was I subconsciously begging to be a new member of their Hipster Craft Beer Guy Club? 
Or was this all a sad, self-realization that I fit the cookie-cutter profile of the cool beer trend demographic to a tee? 

For the first time I had to admit, albeit unintentionally, I've become one of those hipster douche bags. Well, shit, I DO have a beer blog.  How overtly hipster and lame is it to have a freakin' blog?
Wasn't it Freud who identified the Five Stages Of Grief?  Well, I've already gone through Denial for years, so now I was entering Anger and Withdrawal.  Only one way to eventually move on to Acceptance... find some new beers!

Thankfully new discoveries were plentiful on the Tony's tap list.  I started with the Golden Road Better Weather IPA.  I've never heard of this one, but it's a Double IPA, solid like all of the other Golden Road IPAs, and definitely tasting like something within the scope of the other releases on their roster (that's my non-douche way of referring to "flavor profiles", a phrase which is my major pet peeve, but more on that another time). In other words, very similar to their other great IPAs.

Next up was a taster of the Kinetic Brewing Torque Session IPA.  The phrase "Session IPA" makes me a very happy man.  And for those unfamiliar, the phrase "session" refers to low alcohol content, so you can have a session of drinking all day long.  I wish more brewers were hip to this.  The Drake's Alpha Session Pale Ale is the closest I've found to this; a solid beer that won't put me into Nap Mode if I drink it in the middle of the day.  The bartender at Tony's said Kinetic has been creating some excellent beers lately.  I haven't made it up to Lancaster to check them out yet, but now I'm looking forward to it even more.

I finished with the Noble Ale Works Big Black Mariah, a dark, nutty Belgian Strong Ale.  Tasty.  At 11%, I realized I should have opted for a few of those Session IPAs, but alas, maybe it was better to stop there and actually do something constructive with my day, other than drink beer and complain about being the coverboy for the "Craft Beer Hipster Style Guide For Men"... wait, has anyone written that yet?  Maybe I'm on to something...

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