Archive for May, 2012

And… we’re back.

Posted in Stout on May 23, 2012 by wiseweizen

Well, it has been a while, hasn’t it? Sorry about that folks. Here are some potential reasons for the length of time between posts: Diablo 3*, trying to figure out what to do with my life**, things not going according to plan***, and a little bit of good old fashioned laziness thrown in.  But, I’m back! I’ve got a standing invite to a once a week trip to the Winking Lizard (most of those trips will result in a post), and things are starting to take shape so far as life is concerned. With that out of the way, let’s get to it!

Today’s beverage of choice is Oak Barrel Stout by Old Dominion Brewing Company. The stats are 6.1% ABV and 30 IBUs. This smells damn delicious. A sweet scent of vanilla with a slightly oaken afterscent.Yes, that’s right – afterscent.  Stouts are super dark, and this one is on exception. I’d call it burnt mahogany color with an ebon interior. There’s a very light layer of head on this beer, maybe a centimeter thick. I feel as though it is shaped like a central African country. Maybe the Congo or something.

As a rule, I generally don’t like stouts. In fact, I’d venture to say I like them even less than IPAs, which would explain why this is the first one I’ve bothered to review. Personally, I don’t like to chew my beer, and I find most stouts I’ve tried to have sat too heavy. They have too much density for me. I’m delighted to report that Oak Barrel Stout isn’t that dense. I’m 1/3 finished and I don’t feel as if I’ve eaten a three course meal. That said, I’m still not a fan of the taste. It has some good things going for it – I like the hints of vanilla, whose beans were used during the fermentation process. I also appreciate how smooth it goes down, unlike some stouts which feel as though you are swallowing mashed potatoes. My issue with this beverage is that it unsuccessfully straddles the line between sweet and bitter. Sweet with a hint of bitter, or vice-versa can be done well, and I’ve enjoyed several beers in each of those categories. This though… I feel like the brewers put in equal amounts of bitter and sweet ingredients and hoped for the best. What they got was a mishmash of flavor sensations. Rather than complement one another, they fight for dominance within your mouth. That’s a war no one wins and the imbiber especially loses. I feel fairly confidant that even my peers that enjoy stouts would find this unremarkable at best. Sadly, the pleasant aroma and smoothness isn’t nearly enough to redeem this. For my scale today I did a Google image search on the word stout. So, from 1 to this (which was the fourth image) I’m giving Dominion’s Oak Barrel Stout a ranking of this.

I’ve been training for The Warrior Dash, which is two weeks from now. I’m pretty pumped regarding my progress, and am hoping to beat last year’s time of 38m 46s. My bronze goal is to beat last year’s time. My silver goal is under 35 minutes, and my gold time is under 32 minutes.  One of the trainers at the gym suggested that while running I vary my speed every once in a while to get a more effective workout. He was right, switching speeds throughout the run does make for an ass kicking workout. That brings us to our Three Things for today. My Three Running Speeds: 1. low – “That goose is coming after me!” 2. medium – “Mall cops, scramble!” 3. high – “ZOMBIES!!!”

With that, I’m off. Cheers everyone!

* Why yes, I did hook my PC up to my TV to play Diablo, effectively giving me a 55″ monitor. Thanks for noticing.

** You would think this would involve more drinking. Turns out I was actually trying to take life seriously there for a bit. Don’t worry, I probably won’t happen again for another decade or two.

*** So my elaborate plan was for Scott and Adam to meet me at the Lizard, then I’d make them write up their thoughts on the beers they had and make a “guest post” out of it. Adam never showed, and by the time Scott got there I was already a little tipsy and didn’t remember my master plan. Foiled again.