|Josh is anything but angry|
with Angry Orchard cider
You often hear it said that professional brewers and brewery owners march to the beat of their own drum. The out-of-season seasonal beer release is scientific proof that this and similar statements are absolutely true.
We should not attribute the phenomenon solely to the quirkiness of idiosyncratic beer folk, however. What's happening is far more complicated than that, and to pin it all on mere personality traits is shortsighted.
I'll spare you the physics lesson (mostly because I don't know physics), but the appearance of seasonal beers before they're "due" has everything to do with regular (aka seasonal) distortions in the space-time continuum, particularly the way light bends around conical fermenters in the brewhouse. Such bending will often cause brewers and the beer they make to literally catapult back and forth through time, more so in certain "transitional" months of the year. In the simplest terms, the beer we're drinking now doesn't actually exist. It will at some point, but not yet. Follow me?
To date, there is no way for the individual brewer to anticipate or compensate for time travel, neither in his brewing schedule nor his shaving ritual (another reason why professional brewers tend to have such epic beards).
On a grander scale, the relative intensity of time travel is subject to evolving patterns within a 28-year cycle—we've figured that out at least. In other words, the lag between beer and season will grow more and more extreme at a generally predictable rate until summer beers are released in the dead of winter and vice versa. The phenomenon will then reverse itself, wrap back around the calendar and eventually settle for a short time—just a week or two—in a sweet spot, a space where season and beer are paired in perfect harmony.
According to our best calculations, the next projected balance in the seasonal beer release schedule will occur in November 2030, at which time enthusiasts will enjoy harvest and pumpkin beers at their most logical point in years.
Some in the industry have named this event The Great Equilibrium of 2030 and a number of breweries are planning to release special beers to commemorate the occasion. Expect to see them begin to hit shelves in early 2028.
New (and Returning) Beers at Siciliano's
- Southern Tier Pumking, $7.89/22oz - "Pumking is an ode to Púca, a creature of Celtic folklore, who is both feared and respected by those who believe in it. Púca is said to waylay travelers throughout the night, tossing them on its back, and providing them the ride of their lives, from which they return forever changed. Brewed in the spirit of All Hallows Eve, a time of the year when spirits can make contact with the physical world and when magic is most potent. Pour Pumking into a goblet and allow it’s alluring spirit to overflow. As spicy aromas present themselves, let it’s deep copper color entrance you as your journey into this mystical brew has just begun. As the first drops touch your tongue a magical spell will bewitch your taste buds making it difficult to escape the Pumking" (source).
- Southern Tier Harvest, $1.69/12oz - "Harvest Ale is our celebration of the changing weather and the sowing of hops and barley that will be used in our upcoming brews. We usher in the fall with a classic English style Extra Special Bitter of the highest order. Deep ruby in color with an even deeper hop flavor… in fact, we throw fresh English hops into every brewing vessel, then dry hop after fermentation to impart a zesty kick. This beer has real hop character that mingles with fresh malted barley for an experience that will make you wish it were fall year ‘round" (source).
- Founders Mango Magnifico, $13.39/22oz (2 bottles per) - "Mango Magnifico con Calor [Magnificent Mango with Heat] is a never-before-released, high-gravity fruit beer brewed with mango and a touch of Michigan-grown habaneros. Each 750mL bottle of this 10% ABV ale is intended to be shared. Not a traditional fruit beer, the delicate tropical fruit in Mango Magnifico is punctuated by a hint of heat, increasing the overall depth of flavor and adding another level of complexity. A refreshing drink for the warm summer months" (source).
- Liberty Street Brewing The American IPA, $1.99/12oz - "A decidedly hoppy and bitter, moderately strong American pale ale. American hop character can be described as being citrusy, piney, fruity and resiny" (source).
- Brooklyn Oktoberfest, $1.69/12oz - "Brooklyn Oktoberfest was introduced in 2000. It is true to the original German style, full-bodied and malty, with a bready aroma and light, brisk hop bitterness" (source).
- Arcadia Jaw Jacker, $1.79/12oz - "Jaw-Jacker balances our finest malted barley with a bit-o-wheat and is complimented with a citrus hop kick and just the right amount of cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice for a nice marriage of pumpkin pie and beer. Made in the fall to celebrate the changing of the season" (source).
- Erdinger Oktoberfest, $1.99/12oz - "Erdinger is brewed all-naturally, using traditional bottle-fermentation, never pasteurized" (source).
- Hofbrau Oktoberfest, $1.79/12oz - "The Munich Beer Festival, or Oktoberfest, is an event of superlatives - it’s the largest popular festival in the world, staging in the beer metropolis of Munich. Millions of visitors from all over the world flock along every year to enjoy its very special atmosphere. For this occasion, Hofbräu brews a rich, full-bodied beer which goes down ideally with traditional Bavarian cuisine. With its deliciously bitter taste and alcoholic content of 6.3% volume, Hofbräu Oktoberfestbier is as special as the Beer Festival itself" (source).
- Angry Orchard Iceman, $15.09/750ml (1 bottle per) - "Cider House Collection #2: Inspired by the tradition of Ice Ciders in Quebec, Canada, Iceman uses the process of freezing the juice from culinary and bittersweet apples to produce a rich, complex and unique cider with a crisp apple taste and notes of caramel and toffee. This cider is sweet but not cloying. The addition of oak-aging yields a smooth and pleasing vanilla character. The result is a perfectly balanced, full-flavored cider that delights the palate with clean apple notes and a lingering toffee finish" (source).
- Angry Orchard Strawman, $15.09/750ml (1 bottle per) - "Our Cider House Collection #1: For centuries Farmhouse Cider making has been a tradition celebrated by farmers in the English and French countryside. Strawman combines a distinct blend of juices from traditional culinary and bittersweet apples, which is then aged in oak. The result is a full-flavored, complex and balanced cider with wine-like characteristics, rounded out by apple and citrus notes. Its lingering, earthy finish is a homage to the origins of this unique cider" (source).
Quote of the Week
Special thanks to Ben Darcie, aka Michigan Beer Dude,
for bringing this one to our attention.
"Son, never trust a man who doesn’t drink because he’s probably a self-righteous sort, a man who thinks he knows right from wrong all the time. Some of them are good men, but in the name of goodness, they cause most of the suffering in the world. They’re the judges, the meddlers. And, son, never trust a man who drinks but refuses to get drunk. They’re usually afraid of something deep down inside, either that they’re a coward or a fool or mean and violent. You can’t trust a man who’s afraid of himself. But sometimes, son, you can trust a man who occasionally kneels before a toilet. The chances are that he is learning something about humility and his natural human foolishness, about how to survive himself. It’s damned hard for a man to take himself too seriously when he’s heaving his guts into a dirty toilet bowl."
~James Arthur Crumley, Father of the Modern Crime Novel
(October 12, 1939 – September 17, 2008)
The Wrong Case (1975)