Stu West perfectly captured the Monday Beer Club (MBC) motto:
I know what I like, and one of the things I like is beer. I’m in.
The rules are simple. We go to a local brew pub (Brew Revolution) at 4:00 PM on Monday (Duh) and order a flight of locally brewed beer. Our input to the bartender about the type of beer we want is … nothing. Absolutely nothing. The flight will be a complete mystery, and the challenge is to see if we can figure out the beers in the flight. It’s harder than it sounds.
The first thing you’ll notice is that there doesn’t appear to be any logic in the order of the beers. That’s because … there isn’t any logic in the order of the beers. If they put the beers in the order that they thought we should taste them, it would give us a hint, and that isn’t the point of MBC.
We started with the 2nd beer from the handle (on the right). This beer is a pale yellow with a hint of fogginess. The nose is citrus with a bit of grass. the taste has definite citrus notes with mild hop bitterness that continues to build after you swallow, but leaves a clean aftertaste. We decided this would be a perfect beer to drink on the patio on a hot summer day.
Our guess: Kashmir (1st guess) or Live Session (2nd guess). Answer: Live Session – so we were close…
Next: 4th from the right: This beer was crystal clear, with a honey/amber hue. The nose was light with a hint of malt. It reminded me of an English bitter. The taste had a bit of a caramel aftertaste with a bit of balancing bitterness. It wasn’t too alcoholic, and left a pleasant mild bitter aftertaste. We decided it was perfect for a late winter rainy day, which is exactly what we saw outside.
Our guess: We were not at all sure about this one, suggesting Beez Nutz, Haus of the Rye-sing Sun, or Keep Ya Head Up. We were confused and it showed. Turns out we were even more confused than we thought – ti was Lola, an “Oslo Lager”. (I told you this was harder than it sounds…P)
Number 3: closest to the handle, on the far right: This beer was a beautiful clear mahogany (SRM 15) colour with a hint of malt and grapefruit on the nose. The initial taste is fairly mild with the malt and hops in balance, but the immediately fades, leaving a pronounced grapefruit and pine resin flavour. You can also taste a lingering caramel aftertaste with a bit of alcohol.
Our guess: Drop It Like It’s Hopped (West Coast IPA). Nailed it – finally!
We finished with the 3rd beer from the handle: This beer was black. Very black. The nose suggested campfire smoke, and the taste confirmed this, though the taste was surprisingly light given the dark colour. It was very crushable, and not too alcoholic.
Our guess: Who Wears Schwartz Schwartz. Another direct hit.
Final score: two direct hits, one near miss, and one “what the hell were you aiming at”. At the end of the day, a definite success. There will be more meetings of the Monday Beer Club.