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King Gambrinus - Patron Saint of beer.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Beer Surprise

The first day of National Boating Safety Week went well for me. I was not involved in any boat related accident. Of course I was not actually out on the water. Not being out on the water really lowers your odds of being involved in a boating accident.

I may be out today. I have not really decided. It all depends on how motivated I get when the sun is up. If I do end up out there, it will be on the Waverunner. I know some people that will be out riding. If I go then I can meet up with them. If I do not go then I save some money by not having to get more gas.

Anyhow - the beer surprise. Hold on - you will be surprised. I know I was!

I have said before that pale ales are my preferred beer style. When I see one I have not yet tried, I am drawn to it. Like the moths I once released in the movie theater were drawn to the projection booth window - pissing everyone off except me. I thought it was amusing.

By the way - if you do something like that DO NOT laugh. When you laugh you give yourself away. You also need to have a plan to ditch the moth jar discreetly.

Anyhow, I was at the supermarket looking at the beer isle. The Sierra Nevada Pale Ale - my current favorite - was restocked. The 5 pack from a few days ago was gone. Well actually I think it was still there. Only now it is a three pack.

But every so often I scan the isle for something new. And then I saw.............

Yes - Michelob. Michelob Pale Ale.

Now I know. Michelob? What the hell? Normally, I would scoff at anything in a Michelob bottle or can.

But the label DID say "Pale Ale". My favorite of all the ales. So I just had to do it.

I put away the Sierra Nevada and picked up the Michelob.

I will also admit to being highly skeptical. I have tried the Budweiser America Ale. I was somewhat excited about the American Ale, thinking it could be on par with Samuel Adams. But I was let down. The American Ale was not at all well balanced. I think it needed more hops. Or less malt. One of the two - it is hard to tell. The bottom line is that I thought the American Ale has potential - but it is not ready for prime time yet.

So now I see Michelob Pale Ale. That is a tall order there. You are screwing with my favorite beer style here. And I put down a 6 pack of Sierra Nevada!

So I get it home, and stick it in the fridge for a couple of hours to cool down. Then I opened it.

The color is very good. I have had pale ale that was a deeper color, but a pale ale is supposed to be...well...pale. Not a brown ale, not a red ale, not a porter, not a stout - but a pale ale. So the color of the Michelob is acceptable.

But what is important is the taste.

The Michelob Pale Ale is dry hopped. This means that hops are dumped into the fermenter after the brewing is over. What this does is adds aroma without adding hops bitterness. So when you take a wiff of the Michelob, you can smell hops. It is not an overpowering nose, but it is there.

That was good.

The head is a bit weak. It goes away fairly quick. Even when you pour directly into the middle of the glass. By the way - this is the recommended method. Pout directly into the middle of an imperial pint glass - not down the side. If you want less head, you can pour about 1/4 of the beer down the side of the glass then the rest into the middle.

And now for the taste. It is actually good! I like it. I will have to compare it head to head with Sierra Nevada. I think it will come up short against Sierra Nevada, but to beat Sierra Nevada would be tough.

I think the Michelob is a tad "lighter". This makes it a better hot weather beer. Down here, when it gets hot as hell in the summer - a heavy full beer will kill you. Well not kill you, but it may not be something you want. I prefer a lighter beer when it is hot. Flavorful, yet lighter. Maybe a lower alcohol content. Something like that.

Unless I am chilling in the AC.

Anyhow - now for the rating. For a pale ale - I give it a "B". This rating is subject to change once I compare it head to head with Sierra - but it is still good, if you like pale ale.

I can easily see myself buying more of this stuff. It might even become the official boat beer of the summer - edging out the reigning champ Samuel Adams Summer Ale.

Michelob. Who would have thought?


Blogger Utah Savage said...

Though I cannot drink, I buy beer and spirits for my friends who do. Who knows when someone's going to visit and need a good pale ale on a hot summer day? This is very good to know.

Blogger Lily Strange said...

I never released moths in a theatre. However, I was such a lush when I was in my late teens that I always brought those little cans of mixed drinks to movie theatres with me. I'd drink them and then "discreetly" roll them away on the slant towards the front of the theatre. The inebriation probably caused me to think this was way funnier than it actually was.

Blogger Fuzz said...

Fascinating, (we just saw Star Trek)

Blogger The Lazy Iguana said...

Utah - I was somewhat pleased with the Michelob Pale Ale. I was not really expecting all that much. But they did a decent job making a good pale ale! It does not have the punch that other pale ales have - there is less hops bitterness here, but overall I applaud the effort. The big brewers are finally bringing back real beer to America!

lily - the moth thing was a riot. For me. I might have been doing something before going into the theater too. Something leafy perhaps? Who knows.

Fuzz - I am going today!

Blogger M@ said...

Three and five packs? I do not comprehend.....

Blogger The Lazy Iguana said...

M@ - some asshole is apparently taking one or two beers out of a six pack. When I find out who, I plan to kick their ass. Or at least try. I may lose the fight, but the cause will be noble enough to warrant a broken nose.


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