Saturday, November 28, 2009


Dogfish Head Raison D'Etre





First of all, let it be known, that I don't drink that often at all, but when I do, I drink dos equis...just kidding, but seriously, I rarely drink alcohol, that explains why I am the biggest lightweight ever. A cheap date basically.

I have a friend who I admire a lot who is the biggest fan of wine, he knows all the wineries in Argentina where he is from, and for a while, (this was right after I graduated from FAU), I was trying to become a wine connoisseur myself, but there's one problem, I don't really like wine, and the wines I tasted pretty much tasted the same, well, not the same, but I felt like I was forcing myself to do something that was not me. It didn't feel like something naturally mine. Plus, I would taste a Merlot and a Pinno Noir or something I honestly could not taste the difference, then I would try a different Merlot and it would be something unlike the first Merlot I tried, at the end, I just don't like wine, and that's the fact. Do I have a point you ask? well yes, I do. My point is this: I do like Beer.

I never knew beers could be as complex and as appreciable as wine. It turns out, they go way back to the early days of civilization. Man knew about brews long before we knew about..I don't know things we found out within the last 3K years?

Having said all that, I must confess I am not cut out to be a food critic, I lack the fine palate that a lot of people have. I did a google search for dogfish head's Raison D'Etre, and what I found out impressed me. I kept reading all these things about raisins and cinnamon, and I got very excited, I have never tasted a beer like that! It even compared it to a good wine! So I took the plunge and dove in. These are my findings.

Appearance


This Beer is dark brown, it reminds me of..well, Mahogany, and that's what it says in the label, no surprise there. Actually, Dogfish knows it's market sector pretty well; they market themselves as "off-centered stuff for off-center people" you got that right!. The label for this beer is pretty good:
A deep mahogany ale brewed with Belgian beet sugars, green raisins & a sense of purpose

With a label like that I had to give it a chance.

Anyway, there isn't that much head in this brew, and whatever bubbles come up look very tiny, so I am expecting a crisp beer here.

Nose


This was the biggest disappointment. I was expecting to smell raisins, cinnamon, apple cider, Mahogany, but, it just smells like beer to me, a little malty, and maybe some sweetness, but that's all I could detect, so I guess my sense of smell is not as developed.

Taste


This beer tastes good. It's a little malty, not too bad. It leaves your mouth with a sweet aroma, maybe raisins? I like the India Pale Ales, I think my favorite beer is Sierra Nevada. This beer tastes nothing like an IPA, in fact, there's no trace of hops anywhere, however, I think it's pretty good. I don't know if my opinion is shaped by the fact that I have read so many good things about it. I may have been predisposed to like it just because of it's reputation. If I was given this beer blindly, I may be tempted to say no, but only because I prefer the taste of hoppy beers.

Conclusion



Do not drink this beer if you are a lightweight, and you have an empty stomach and have not had too much sleep! The 8% of Alcohol really kicked my ass! I was feeling a buzz after just one beer.

This beer is to be taken seriously. Good beer, but not my favorite. It does make my top ten.

J.V.




Flying Spaghetti Monster






Thanks a lot to Mark A. and Angie A. for blessing us with this great gift, an actual FSM tree topper!

I wish you all a noodly winter soltice!

J.V.

Friday, November 27, 2009



Black Friday





This morning I did something I thought I'd never do. Something that I've criticized in other people. I went to a store in the wee hours of the morning, stood in the cold waiting to buy a stupid gizmo. In this case it was a 32' HDTV for $246. Showed up at 0345 hrs and there was huge line already, I stood there overhearing conversations people were having around me, I was trying to read my book but could not help hearing about how this chick was trying to quit smoking and about how hard it was to fool her husband, who is a cop, I tried to butt in the conversation, but probably came across as the biggest creep, I don't care, I was just trying to be friendly. Anyway, finally the doors opened and people started rushing in, I wanted to get out with my dignity intact, so I did my best not to run to the Electronics section, once I got there I watched in panic as everyone was running in the opposite direction with the LCD TV's in hand, once I got the stash there were only like 3 left, I am not sure, but I think I may have grabbed someone's TV, but I didn't stop to make sure, by the time I had mine in hand, the TVs were all gone. Yes, at 05:03 there were none left. None.

I paid for the TV and went back to the store to see if I could find a $3 toaster or a good deal on an espresso machine, but no luck, everything else was marked up at a regular price, so I came home and went to sleep until the kids and the cats climbed into bed and woke us up.

Lesson learned: I don't think I will do this again, unless it's a really good deal and it's something I really wanted to get anyway. It's ok to try it once, however, people behave strangely when they are grouped into mobs. Crazy. Crazy.

Be Good to each other.

J.V.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving



I am thankful for having a great family and for having the pleasure of knowing so many amazing people. If you are reading this and we've shared a meal or a drink together that means I think you are an awesome person. Thank you.

I am thankful for every breath of air. Being alive is a great gift, as much suffering, struggle, and unfairness we have in life, it still beats being dead. I am not thankful for war, but I am thankful for the lessons I learned from that experience.

I am thankful for living. That is all.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009