Thursday, August 7, 2008

Pliny the Elder + Vanilla?

No I didn't mix Pliny with some Vanilla. Well, sort of I didn't. After a long day of helping my friend Steve move into his new place in Long Beach I came home to some leftover pizza and thought, what would go better with that than a bottle of Pliny the Elder? So I popped one open and enjoyed the hell out of it. Just the smell had me thinking I was sitting up at the bar in Santa Rosa. Pliny is such an amazing beer. I absolutely love the pine that comes though in it, giving it a real green, outdoorsy taste. If you're in an area that doesn't get a supply of Pliny, find someone to trade with. Don't pay $70+ for a bottle of it like someone did recently on eBay... you can certainly trade for it at a much cheaper price than that (usually for equal value).

After dinner I still felt like another beer so with some chocolate brownie, whipped cream and strawberry thing my mom made I pulled out a Breckenridge Vanilla Porter. The only other beer I've had with vanilla beans in the past was Stone's Smoked Porter with Vanilla Bean, which was amazingly crafted. As I was eating my brownie the vanilla porter went down so smooth and rich, probably due to the chocolate coating in my mouth. It smelled like this beer had some lactose added to it maybe... like a cream stout. The mouthfeel was super creamy and the taste was mildly roasty and very chocolaty, with a sweetness like lactose... I dunno maybe that was the vanilla. Overall, once I was done with my dessert I could tell this beer was really sweet and creamy.. a sipper even if it's only 4.7%, and not something I would quaff.

Another interesting beer on the day was when we first finished moving all the furniture into Steve's new house. In his fridge the only thing there was about 10 beers from a trade he had just received. We decided to have the Weyerbacher Double Simcoe IPA. He didn't have glassware yet so we drank from the bottle. I've had the beer once before and thought it was "eh"... but out of the bottle, on a really hot Southern California day, after getting a nice sweat going moving furniture, this 9% double IPA did not hit the spot at all. Anyway, so bad choice there. Then, as if it were Anchorman, Steve decides to take about a half gallon swig of milk. I don't think that ended up being a good idea either.

Long day, but tomorrow we head out to Pismo Beach for the weekend. Our itinerary looks like this: Leave around 1pm, after about an hour and half arrive in Camarillo at JJ Brewsky's, grab a drink there and then head into Goleta for Hollister Brewing Company. If we're on schedule after that we'll continue up to Buellton and meet our friend Pat who is driving separately and leaving a bit later than us, at Firestone's Taproom. If we're ahead of schedule then we'll still head into Buellton and probably stop off at The Hitching Post for a glass of wine or something. Once we get into Pismo we will most certainly be hitting a favorite dive of ours in San Luis Obispo, the Frog & Peach, with a Saturday dinner at the best seafood restaurant in the country (fact!), the Seachest in Cambria. There's also a really cool looking Belgian beer and frites place in SLO I want to get to, Bel Frites.


Dave said...


If you ever want to do any beer trades let me know. I can get East Coast beers. I would love to try some Russian River and Lost Abbey beers.

BeerGuy said...

BTW The Hitching Post had a single tap last time I was there in the bar in Sideways.

They had Firestone Double Barrel on tap, had 2-3 of those before getting down to dinner and wine for the event there.

Rational Realist said...

I picked up two Plinys over the past week. I had one last night and it was so good I had the second, too. I thought the hype had gotten ahead of the beer, but I was wrong.