Searching for the line between "hobby" and "obsession"

A Great End To The Year With Many Great Beers

In looking back on the holiday season, I had the opportunity to indulge in many great beers. Here’s the rundown:
  • 12/23: O’Dell’s Best Brown ale on tap at Loring Pasta Bar (started me thinking I should do a sweet brown ale)Surly Smoke and Darkness and Bell’s Two Hearted ale on tap at the Varsity Theater
  • 12/25: Shared a bottle of 2010 Surly Darkness (procured back on Darkness Day) with my Grandma and Dad on Christmas, which is also my birthday
  • 12/26: Had some Odell’s Isolation Ale and Surly Abrasive on tap at Buster’s on 28th after a little reunion jam session with buddies from my high school rock band Delayed Reaxtion. We had some Barking Dog D3, Cujo Spice and Sammy’s Golden Porter during practice.
  • 12/28: Summit Winter on tap at Alary’s, downtown St. Paul for a happy hour. CREAMY, delicious malty-ness.
  • 12/29: The new Town Hall Tap opened near my hood. Checked it out with Michelle’s parents for a belated b-day celebration. Got to try their house Belgian Brown on tap and Odell’s Best Brown on cask. The Odell’s was the first cask beer I’ve ever tried. Very thick, loved it! I’m now definitely on a kick to brew a brown ale on the sweet side.
  • 12/31: We hung out with friends Cristof and Laura (of Sammy’s Golden Porter fame) at their place in the warehouse district for NYE. I brought a bottle of my Surly Smoke as well as some 21st Amendment Hell or High Watermelon wheat beer. I wasn’t that fond of the watermelon wheat but figured maybe someone at their place on NYE might be. Cristof had some Deschutes Jubelale available, which was much like the  Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale my buddy Jim brought over for the Off-Leash Coffee Stout brew day. A big malty IPA.
  • 1/1: Russian River’s Janet’s Brown Ale at Pizza Luce in Uptown. Was a bit sharper of a brown ale than Odell’s or Town Hall Tap’s Belgian Brown. RR’s brown was a good beer but reminds me a little too much of New Castle.
  • 1/2: I rounded out the holiday season on Sunday night at home with an Imperial Pumpkin Porter from Summit Brew Co.’s unchained series. I enjoy pumpkin spice in beer a lot, and the pumpkin definitely doesn’t hide in this brew. It managed to maintain plenty of smokiness from the porter malts. It didn’t have as much carbonation as I would have liked but I think that’s because I drank it pretty cold and thicker beers seem to have a hard time holding a head at near freezing temps.
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