August 19, 2011

A Rare and Beautiful Thing.

On Tuesday, I sat on the deck in the cloud filtered sunshine, enjoying the brew I will tell you about in a paragraph to follow, I listened to Ludovico Einaudi played against the background of Rainymood (seriously, play them both at the same time - it's brilliant...everything is better with rain). As I sat, with my eyes closed, I thought about all that I've seen and all that I've done in my life. Doing so is a bit like walking down an endlessly long corridor in a theatre multi-plex, peeking inside each theatre, watching a moment of my life on the screen...and thinking, "ahhh...yes...I remember that".

Some memories are better than others and it caused me to wonder...if I could, would I change any of it? The short answer is no. I wouldn’t change even one thing. Everything that I have experienced has lead me to this moment, this glorious moment where I am beginning wonderful new adventures and happiness potential is everywhere. Life has been better to me than I deserve…but I won’t bore you with the details. ;)

I've had other things on my mind as I drank this beer so I am not going to give you a breakdown of each characteristic. Today you get only this summation – it is a rare and beautiful thing and you should have some. And that is probably higher praise than a number could convey.

What I do have for you is a wish - that you find love. Real, honest to goodness love that makes you put aside the tools with which we measure others, makes you not care about the superficial things that don’t matter, and makes you believe everything, including flying, is possible. When you find it, it will carry you through life. It will also give you something to smile about when you are watching your own memory movie in your mind.

Cheers! *clinks my glass to yours* To flying…and really good beer…which I give 45/50. ;)


August 7, 2011

Tetley's English Ale and Synchronicity

Late yesterday afternoon as I was satisfying my daily compulsion to learn something new or different, I stumbled upon an interesting documentary. I was sitting at my desk, sipping my weekly beer (yes, I have been limiting myself to a single serving of beer each week so as to ensure I fully appreciate it), contemplating its characteristics, and watching Hulu. When the documentary I had been watching ended, an advert for another documentary played - one promoting a short film about beer ticking in England.

What, you might ask, just as I did, is beer ticking? As it turns out, it is similar to my beer project, although with much more ambitious goals. A beer ticker's goal is to try as many different beers as possible and to record that it has been consumed by ticking it off of a list. I could never be a good beer ticker as I am only trying one new beer and consuming only one serving of that beer each week, but there is a subset of tickers, scoopers, that may have goals more closely aligned to mine - to try different beers, tick it off their list of beers, and make tasting notes and/or score the beer. When I learned there was a large number of people who tick and scoop I thought, "My people! MY PEOPLE!!", and rose from my chair with my arms raised high, yelling, "I AM BEING CALLED HOME!!!" Ok, not really, but I do admit that the people who indulge in such a hobby only make England that much more wonderful. It is almost, almost as wonderful as Canada.

Anyway, beer ticking documentary on Hulu - watch it. It's the right thing to do.

Now, on to this week's beer!

Tetley's English Ale

  • Appearance: As you can see from the photo above, it pours beautifully and makes a thick, creamy head, which is made possible by the nitro widget inside the can. It is a pleasing, rich caramel colour, which provides a hint as to how it might taste.
  • Aroma: It has a pleasant, if a bit weak, nutty and caramel aroma.
  • Flavour: Although I thoroughly enjoyed this beer it wasn't terribly memorable, nor did I feel compelled to proclaim its virtues while I was drinking it. It was slightly sweet, a bit nutty, and had a subtle caramel flavour, but it lacked complexity. It is a rather predictable, mass-produced beer.
  • Mouthfeel: This really has lovely body - creamy but not too thick. Really nice.
  • Overall impression: If you are heading over to a friend's place for a barbeque and don't have time to shop for something really interesting to take along, stop and pick up a six-pack of this. It is easy to drink, predictable, and would go really well with fresh air and a burger.

Summary (each characteristic on a scale of 1-10, where one is very poor and 10 is excellent):
  • Appearance: 9
  • Aroma: 7
  • Flavour: 7
  • Mouthfeel: 8
  • Overall impression: 7
Total: 38/50

Tetley's English Ale can best be described as "meh", accompanied by a head tilt and a shrug. It was neither good and memorable, nor offensive and regrettable.

Next week, a beer from down under!