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Friday, December 22, 2017

New Beer Friday, Uncle Andy Edition (December 22)

Preamble by Steve Siciliano

I can’t tell you how many times customers asked if I was related to Andy Siciliano over the years but I can unequivocally state that my affirmative replies always elicited the same response. “He sure is a nice guy,” they would invariably say after I told them Andy was my uncle.

My uncle Andy, universally acknowledged as a nice guy, passed away last week. He was seventy-three.

I’m sure that the majority of folks who had asked me about Andy in the store had met him through his work as a real estate agent. His clients liked him and they rewarded him with referrals. His competitors respected him and they had nothing but good things to say about him.

When I heard that Andy had passed I thought about the day he told me he was going into real estate. He was in his late forties and for the second time in his life he had lost a job because of a factory closing. He was excited to be starting a new career but I remember wondering about his qualifications. I worried he didn't have the chops needed to be successful in real estate sales. I couldn’t have been more wrong.

He had been in the business for about ten years when my wife and I decided to sell our house in Grandville and buy one closer to the store. He was doing well so Barb and I gave the listing to a friend who had recently gotten his license. I could sense Andy’s disappointment but he handled it graciously. He never mentioned it again but I regretted that decision for years.

A few days ago good friend and store handyman Rod Lawrence came in for a cup of coffee. Rod had purchased a house a number of years ago and Andy was his agent. When I told him about Andy he offered his condolences.

“He sent me a Christmas card every year,” Rod told me.

“That sounds like Andy.”

“He sure was a nice guy,” Rod said after a few moments.

New and Returning Beer

  • Goose Island Noel, $3.79/12oz - "A Belgian Style Dark Ale" (source).
  • Perrin Foudre, $2.19/12oz - "Black Currant Sour is the first batch in the Perrin Foudre Series. This beer was soured with Brett Trios yeast & Labtobacilus Brevis than aged for 9 months in an oak foudre" (source).
  • Odd Side Fight Milk, $2.79/12oz - "For bodyguards, by bodyguards" (source).
  • Odd Side Mango Dan, $2.79/12oz - "IPA with mango" (source).
  • Odd Side Beer Me, $1.49/12oz - "Lager" (source). - "" (source).
  • Tapistry Northern Trippin, $3.19/16oz. - "Very Juicy New England Style IPA. Get on board the haze craze with this IPA" (source).
  • Shorts Woodmaster, $2.59/12oz - "Woodmaster is a high gravity, American Brown Ale fermented with Northern Michigan maple syrup and toasted pecans. This dark brown, full bodied ale is rich with sweet malt and syrup flavors. These flavors are complemented by the presence of hop aromas and a faint nuttiness" (source).
  • Southern Tier Raspberry White, $1.89/12oz - "Over the years, we’ve fine-tuned our house brew into a beautifully crisp & slightly sweet wheat beer brewed with malted barley, unmalted wheat & raspberry puree. Perfectly balanced, light bodied & raspberry tart, Raspberry White is ready to take on the world one bottle at a time" (source).
  • Southern Tier Blueberry Sour, $4.59/12oz - "Blueberry Tart is the result of two beers blended into one. The first beer is a kettle soured blonde ale. The second is a simple imperial wheat ale into which we add a whole lot of blueberry puree. This process achieves a bright and juicy blueberry aroma and a complex flavor character throughout each sip. At first it is bright and juicy, followed by sweet and round in the middle, and ending with a mild tartness that en-courages another mouthful. Slight notes of pie crust emerge in the aftertaste of this imperial ale" (source).
  • Southern Tier Thick Mint, $5.49/12oz - "Inspired by the legendary cookie, Thick Mint joins our world-class rated Blackwater Series of dessert beers alongside Crème Brûlée, Choklat Oranj, Salted Caramel & Choklat in 2017. This imperial stout is a mouthful of perfectly balanced mint & chocolate. Roasty malts coalesce with notes of Belgian dark chocolate, sweet mint & just a touch of sweet caramel. So decadently delicious, you’ll wish you’d bought another box… er, bottle" (source).
  • New Holland Tangerine Space Machine, $2.79/12oz - "There once lived a bitter soul, with a fruitful life as his goal, hopped in his space machine, went to New England to find his queen, came a haze of tangerine" (source).
  • Latitude 42 Lucifer Cuvee, $2.59/12oz - "Dangerously devastating, Lucifer’s Cuvée is our Double Chocolate Oatmeal Stout. Intense hearty rye, along with a decadent gourmet of chocolate essence, and balanced by the addition of Cascade hops" (source).
  • Central Waters BBA Stout, $4.39/12oz - "The "Brewer’s Reserve" label is used only for limited edition beers. No time or expense was spared to create these beers! This is a good expression of our passion for brewing" (source).
  • Against the Grain Sho'Nuff, $4.19/16oz - "This Belgian table bier is a traditional entry into the Session category. It is meant to be consumed with food but also stands well on its own. When you need to drink the whole meal and want something with plenty of flavor but don’t want to get shit-twisted from the alcohol, this is a great choice. Look for a smooth malty body with hints of biscuit and rye. The hops are subdued and mostlyp resent as a bittering agent. The yeast plays a prominent role in creating bready and lightly fruity notes" (source).
  • Against the Grain/Stillwater Found Word, $4.19/16oz - "What's going to happen when Stumke comes to town? That's always the question for one of beer's biggest rock stars or maybe he's hip hop, I'm not sure. Whatever it is it's always about more than the beer with this collaboration with Stillwater Artisanal. So this hoppy guava lager is going to be good to drink but that's not all. The can is a word find so you can interact with Strumke and I without the lingering side effects" (source).
  • Lindemans Ginger Gueuze, $33.39/750ml - "Breaking the mold among existing beer styles, Lindemans developed the Botanical Lambics, a collection of old gueuzes with a twist. Third in this series, GingerGueuze is based on a blend of 12 month-old lambic with two- to three-year-old lambic, fermented in oak with fresh ginger. Bottle-conditioned, GingerGueuze has a golden color and combines the sourness of lambic with the subtle flavors of fresh ginger. Ideal as an aperitif, it is also perfect for food paring" (source).

Video of the Week | The Lindeman's Family

A cool video from an old brewery — enjoy!


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