Sunday, November 25, 2007

Port Brewing/Lost Abbey Older Viscosity Release

My sister and I drove down to San Marcos Saturday to meet a friend of ours in from Florida and do a little beer drinking centered around the release of a few beers from Port Brewing/The Lost Abbey. The feature beer was Older Viscosity, a bourbon barrel aged version of the strong ale Old Viscosity. The other beers to be released were Gift of the Magi, a unique Biere de Garde using ingredients such as bark of Frankincense, Myrrh, and brettanomyces, and Santa's Little Helper, a Russian Imperial Stout. By the time we got there we joined a small line of about 25 people as we put our orders in. While waiting I had a taster of Santa's Little Helper which was fantastic, especially since it was my breakfast. As the line kept moving so did the tasters. Gift of the Magi was also on tap, so I tried that. It was a very complex beer that one would need more than a 4 oz taster of to be able to describe well.

We purchased our beers and headed over to Stone to get some food. The tap list at Stone was pretty good this day (when isn't it?), and it took no hesitation for me to order a 2004 Stone Imperial Russian Stout when I saw it was on the list. Compared to the 2005 and 2006 aged versions I've tried recently, this one was probably the best. The chocolate and roast had really melded nicely to create an incredibly rich and smooth drinking experience. The other new beer I tried was Anderson Valley's Brother David's Tripel. Not really the best interpretation of a tripel I've tasted but a good beer nonetheless. As we were leaving I picked up a growler of Stone Ruination for the USC game against the bRUINS next week. I'm hoping we will indeed "ruin" them.

Sage guilted me into returning to The Lost Abbey after Stone (even though I "needed" to get home to study) because he said they had a special keg of Older Viscosity on (I'm sure it will cost me a few points on my infectious disease midterm, but that's worth it). I must thank him for that because it was my first REAL taste of the Older Viscosity and it was awesome (way better than I remember it during the barrel tasting, but then again that had been after like 12 other beers). Older had some deep chocolate, tons of oak, and heat. It was a super rich beer that went down incredibly smooth. Probably the best "sipping" type beer I've experienced.

That pretty much did my day in right there. How I even tried to study for an hour or two at night baffles me.

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