Monday, November 6, 2023

Cheap Beer!

The Ralph's on Jefferson has Octoberfest beers on sale:

They're all on a table at the back of the store.

I bought the Alschmidt Oktoberfest (six-pack) for $6.20. These beers are already at least a month old and there's no way of knowing how they've been stored during that time so there's a risk that they'll be awful even if the beer was originally excellent. But, at about a buck a beer, I felt it was a risk worth taking. (I didn't make note of the other prices.)

I already have a Hofbräu Oktoberfest in my refrigerator which I am looking forward to trying. In addition, I have Premium Pils from Bitburger which you can get for $6 (4 x 16oz.) at Trader Joe's (in La Quinta, CA) and Kaskadia Kölsch from 54-40 Beer (Washougal, WA).

These are just my Fall beers. . . .

The next time you see us sitting in the driveway, stop by. Bring a Fall beer to trade if you have one (although there's zero chance you'll get a Kölsch out of Hubby). Or, just stop by and we can taste some German-style beers. Bring a lawn chair or your own glassware (or plasticware), if you want. If you want snacks, you'll have to bring those as well. If you want conversation, beer, and a sunset, this is the place.

It isn't October any more. (Or even September.) But, we can pretend it is. 


Sunday, November 5, 2023

Something must be wrong.

I just went on a road trip during which I visited no breweries. This is unprecedented. Furthermore, it's been over a weeks since I've been in ANY brewery.

I did go to a tap house, however. And while this one isn't really worth noting, it is worth noting that there's a really good one in Orlando. 

The one we went to this weekend is called Cold Beers & Cheeseburgers (👟🍕) in Verrado (a neighborhood in Buckeye, AZ). They had a reliable menu of beers which included several choices from local breweries. I had the 8th Street Pale Ale (🍻) from Four Peaks Brewing Company (Tempe, AZ), a very reliable beer. It's easy to drink at 4.9% ABV. It had enough flavor to keep me interested but didn't overwhelm my palate. 

The tap house itself was easy to get to and had plenty of parking. The beer menu was ample but wasn't very interesting. There was plenty of shade on the outdoor patio but the music (rock) was just a little too loud. Servers wore t-shirts with phrases such as "I'd tap that" or "Show me your tips."

The one in Orlando was called Rock & Brews (🔙🍕) which we visited earlier this year. It's really not fair to compare the two because it's not like you can easily go from one to the other. They're 2,000 miles apart from each other. But, if you were ever faced with the unlikely decision about whether to go to Phoenix or Orlando based on just these two tap houses, I would recommend Orlando. (I will point out that Rock & Brews has locations in several other states including California.)

First of all, the music Rock & Brews plays falls more into the classic rock category. It's older by definition but so am I so that works for me. The brew menu was broad and deep. No matter what you're into, there's a beer for you on this menu. The wait staff was friendly and attentive (and didn't wear kitchy t-shirts.)

The vibe was a little like a Hard Rock Cafe where the experience includes music and memorabilia. The Orlando's Rock & Brews had plenty of parking and seating areas both indoors and out. We went back a second time while we were there. The first time we were at a hightop table, and the second time we snagged a couch.

When we weren't at Cold Beers & Cheeseburgers this weekend, we were visiting with family and eating Frito Pie for dinner. It was paired with Weekend Vibes (🍻) from Coronado Beer Company (San Diego) which we brought with us. 6.8% ABV and 60 IBU (according to Untappd), it's described on Coronado's website thusly:

Bursting with tropical dankness, this beer is everything you want from a San Diego-style IPA. It’s bright, bursting with hop fruitiness, and refreshingly dry. . . . 

Bronze Medal Winner – American-Style India Pale Ale – 2019 Great American Beer Festival

I couldn't have said it better myself. It was an excellent pairing with Frito Pie.

Now that we've moved the clock back an hour, I have more time to kill before Hoppy Hour today. I guess should go find something productive to do.

Or not.