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Friday, June 8, 2018

New Beer Friday, Country Roads Edition (June 8)

First fish on the fly
Preamble by Steve Siciliano

Now that we’re semi-retired, my wife Barb and I have been spending a lot of time at our cottage, which means we’ve been spending a fair amount of time driving around on country roads. We take those roads to get to our fishing spots and we travel down them on our occasional trips to the stores, restaurants, bars and fly-fishing shops in the rural areas of Lake and Mason counties. Since there’s never much traffic on those roads, I see more vehicles on my five-minute drive to Siciliano’s than I do during a week’s worth of driving up north, and I’m better able to focus on the lovely country scenery. That’s not to say that you can completely zone out. You have to keep an eye out for the ubiquitous deer and for the flocks of oblivious turkeys.

While many of those roads are paved there’s still a good number that are not. I prefer unpaved roads despite the fact they're dusty when dry, muddy when wet and have the tendency to get terribly washboarded. There have been times I was driving down a gravel road at a pretty good clip when I hit a stretch of ripples that rattled the truck so hard that I feared the fillings were being dislodged from my teeth. But the scenery always seems to be better on those roads — the dilapidated barns, the pine-stump fences, the meadows of wildflowers, the rickety wooden bridges over the occasional creek.

Perhaps another reason I like gravel roads is that they usually lead you to the best fishing spots and lately we’ve been doing a fair amount of angling. Barb has been learning the intricacies of fly fishing and last week she caught her first brown while wading in the Little Manistee. She was lamenting the fact that the trout was a tad small until I relayed to her what the late Pete Hamlin said to Harry Winston and I one night at the Bear Creek Inn. “If you can catch a trout on a fly in the Little Manistee,” he told us, “you can catch a trout on a fly anywhere.”

New and Returning Beer

  • Boulevard Jam Band Berry Ale, $1.89/12oz - "Accompanying a simple malt base, blueberry, raspberry and tart cherry play in perfect harmony to create a slightly tart ale that sings with ripe, bursting fruit flavor. Aromas of dark berries, citrus and melon open the show, bridging to zippy fruit flavors that meld into an easy-drinking summer beer worthy of an encore" (source).
  • Central State/Transient Haizon, $4.39/16oz - "Combination of a hazy dry-hopped beer and light, refreshing farmhouse ale. Malt bill of Indiana-malted Rye, Pilsner, and Wheat with Citra and Loral cryo hops" (source).
  • Dogfish Head Festina Peche, $2.79/12oz - "In addition to fermentation with an ale yeast, Berliner Weisse is traditionally fermented with lactic cultures to produce its acidic (or green apple-like) character. Served as an apertif or summertime quencher, Festina is delicately hopped and has a pale straw color. To soften the intense sourness, Berliner Weisse is traditionally served with a dash of essence of woodruff or raspberry syrup" (source).
  • Eel River Emerald IPA, $2.59/12oz - "A bold, West Coast-style IPA bursting with pine and citrus notes supported by a solid malt backbone. Hopped and dry-hopped with Magnum, Cascade, Centennial, Chinook and Simcoe varieties" (source).
  • Eel River Organic Acia, $2.39/12oz - "A Certified Organic, delicate crystal wheat beer with a light, thirst-quenching body, balanced by the equally refreshing aroma of organic acai, pomegranate, and other mixed berries " (source).
  • Eel River Organic Blond, $2.39/12oz - "Our lightest beer . A great organic beer. With an exceptionally crisp palate, this ale balances the light malt palate with a subtle bitterness. This ale is an ideal beer for those unaccustomed to micro-brewed beers. Made with pale, wheat, carastan and carapils malts. Hopped with Cascade, Saaz and Tettnang hops. Made with pride and great taste from the worlds first certified organic brewery" (source).
  • Eel River Organic Tropical Sparkling Ale, $2.39/12oz - "An Organic Sparkling Ale, light in color, and effervescent in body with a clean finish. It lends itself perfectly to the tropical flavors of the Organic Passionfruit and Kiwi that are used to bring summer into the glass. The Organic Tropical Sparkling Ale is the perfect companion for any outdoor activity" (source).
  • Ellison You Can Get With That Juice, $3.29/16oz - "Are you ready for some hazy, NE Coast love? A double dry hop gives this IIPA an aroma that is packed citrus and fruit. It's sweet to start, with a succulent mouth feel that finishes smooth and dry" (source).
  • Marz Jungle Boogie, $4.69/12oz - "Jungle Boogie is an American Wheat beer with just enough complex malt character to balance the juicy Mosaic hops and rooibos tea flavors. Canned version brewed at Against the Grain" (source).
  • Odd Side El Dankerino, $2.79/12oz - "West Coast IIPA" (source).
  • Perrin Passion Fruit Gose, $2.09/12oz - "Passion Fruit Gose combines the tropical taste of ripe passion fruit with the distinct flavor of pink Hawaiian sea salt to balance the taste buds in a crisp, refreshing beer for summer thirst" (source).
  • Roak Ice Cream Man, $3.39/16oz - "Sour ale with aromas of orange and vanilla leading into a slightly sweet tartness that is balanced and refreshing. Brewed with orange zest, vanilla, lactose" (source).
  • Roak Zenyatta, $3.09/16oz - "This session IPA is hazy in appearance and brewed with lactose for added body and a pillowy mouthfeel. Dry hopped with Amarillo, Calypso, El Dorado, and Denali hops. Zenyatta has notes of citrus and tropical fruit that lead to a clean finish" (source).
  • Short's Power of Love, $2.19/12oz - "Power of Love is a truly unique pink-colored shandy created by blending local lemonade and a Wheat Ale brewed with raspberry and rosemary. Enticing sugary aromas intermix with appealing citrus and herb fragrances. Very sweet lemon flavors give way to a shock of tart raspberry before turning sharply dry, as if eating a piece of grapefruit" (source).
  • Sierra Nevada Sidecar IPA, $1.79/12oz - "We pushed the complex and citrus-heavy flavors of hops to a new level with this orange-infused IPA. Combining bright and bold hops with real orange in the fermenter creates layers of citrus-crazy flavors, yet it maintains a balance and a crisp hop bite that make it the perfect aromatic IPA" (source).
  • Stone Enjoy By 7-4, $3.19/12oz - "For this version of Stone Enjoy By IPA we thought: “We don’t always have a filter, so why should our beer?” By skipping a step and letting this devastatingly fresh, golden-hued double IPA go un filtered, the beer takes on a hazy appearance and its peach and tropical fruit hop aroma are intensified. So though it may sound like it, this missed step was no misstep" (source).
  • White Flame Hardball IPA, $2.99/12oz - A 12.5% IPA from "Hudsonville's oldest brewery" (source).

Video of the Week | Enjoy By 7-4-18

Available at Siciliano's while supplies last.


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