Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Beer #38-43 / Day 7&8: Expressions Of True Love

Tuesday band practice means the weekly Union Meeting with Domino & Denunzio.  We typically end up at The Office or Tony's Darts Away.  This week we mixed it up & tried a new spot in Burbank:  THE SNUG.  We thought it would be a silly, over the top, Irish pub, or the crummiest dive bar.  It was neither.  The Snug is officially our new hangout.  It's clean, hipster free, non-pretentious, non-crowded, with a decent selection of taps and hard liquor, a friendly bartender, affordable drinks, 70s classic rock & 80s hits in rotation.... No complaints. The Snug is The Shit!
The Shiznit.
Instead of limiting themselves to Guinness and Bass, like most of these faux Limey bars, they had some unexpected & interesting selections.  Domino was hooked as soon as we found out Fireball shots were $4 with any beer.  Welcome home!  I opted to start with the AVERY BREWING WHITE RASCAL - Beer #38, one of the more complex witbiers out there. I away shy from many lighter beers, but this has a lot going on, and exemplifies why Avery is one of my favorites Stateside.  Next, I went for the ALASKAN BREWING IPA - Beer #39.  Funny how it's doesn't have a name other than "IPA", but it's appropriate because that all it is.  It's not frou-frou, fancy, or ultra-rare... it's just a freakin' IPA, so deal with it.  Good, not amazing, but it does the job.
Avoid eye contact with the Brew Jawa
We stopped drinking a bit earlier than usual, in favor of actually having a good practice (i.e. not showing up shit-faced).  Good plan considering we're headed out to play Baltimore in 10 days.  On the way there, Domino stopped at the liquor store across from The Snug and discovered they carried singles of several good beers.  I knew this guy loved me the second he showed up at practice with a tall boy of GOLDEN ROAD POINT THE WAY IPA - Beer #40 for me. One of my top local favorites, no question.  Since we're playing out soon, we agreed practice next week should be sober.  Then again, we're not exactly famous for keeping our promises.

Wednesday night after work, I was without a car and needed to wait for a ride from The Mrs.  There's only one bar within a block of my work, and that's THE OFFICE.  I've frequented this room a million times, not so much because I'm such a huge fan, but because it's within walking distance. Any going away party or other co-worker milestone is celebrated at this establishment.  The Office is also the standard Infest pre-practice watering hole. The bartender knows us and occasionally hooks us up. And its less than a mile from where we practice. The Office has decent taps (although they rotate infrequently), uncomfortable chairs, but nice bartenders. The more I come here, the more I recognize the regulars. There's a few guys I see every time, no matter what day of the week. Gotta love local drunks.
Beer selfie.  Act natural.
Speaking of, I decided to start with the SIERRA NEVADA CELEBRATION ALE - Beer #41. The keg actually ran out halfway thru the pint, so the bartender gave it to me gratis. Good lookin' out, Sister!  That's service!  Showing true love, I say.  I somehow avoided this beer during the Holidays, which is when it's released annually, but wanted to get a taste before it disappears til next Fall. It has that familiar Sierra Nevada varietal hop bite, but its more akin to a hoppy, brown ale. Since I'm here often, and I usually order the same few things (Green Flash IPA, North Coast Old Rasputin, Angel City Angelino IPA, or Ballast Point Sculpin), I decided to mix it up & try something new.  I went for another seasonal selection, the SAMUEL ADAMS COLD SNAP - Beer #42.  This one is wheaty, and barnyardy.  Like a bale of hay fermented in apple juice. Not entirely awesome.  I wasn't expecting greatness, and I got what I expected.
The Wife scooped me up, and we wrapped up the evening at home with a SIERRA NEVADA OLD CHICO CRYSTAL WHEAT - Beer #43.  I've never seen this beer in SoCal, but my Mom lives in Chico, home of Sierra Nevada, and on her last visit brought me four cases of different Sierra Nevada brews.  That's true love, right there.  Old Chico is a perfect everyday beer.  Not overwhelming, but superior to any other mainstream beer you'd pick up on Game Day.  It's light, refreshing, but with distinct, gritty malt and barley flavor.  I've got another 10 or so stockpiled if you want to try it.
And to top off the evening, the Clippers win again.  Further proof that someone up there does love me!


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