THE BEER: Valhalla from Elysian Fields in Seattle.
SEATTLE? REALLY? Yep. Scammed my way across the country. I’m clever that way.
WHAT IS IT? A red IPA. I’m guessing that means that the malts involved in brewing bring more color to the beer than a normal IPA.
HOW IS IT? Aggressively hoppy, and I mean that in a good way. It’s got a sharp but pleasant bitter aroma to start, and a nice citrus blast. It’s really quite pleasant if you like hops.
HOW MUCH IS LEFT? I just finished it, actually. And since I don’t feel like leaving, let’s add another beer to the mix…
THE BEER: Saison Poivre
WHAT IS IT? A peppercorn Saison. Saisons, you will recall, are Belgian farmhouse ales.
PEPPERCORN, YOU SAY. That’s what they tell me, and I’m rolling with it. And holy damn, it works.
REALLY? Yes. The nose is pretty much what you’d expect from a good Belgian (but not too funky, as Belgians are wont to be). The peppercorn adds a really nice spicy character to the actual taste. It’s definitely there, but not overwhelming at all. I just overheard someone say, “For a Saison, this doesn’t taste all that Saison-y to me.” I think that’s true, and since I often find Saisons to be too farm-stinky, I put it to you that this is a good thing.
SO YOU SCAMMED YOUR WAY TO SEATTLE AND YOU’RE JUST HANGING OUT AT A BREWPUB. Shhh. Don’t tell anyone.
DEEP THOUGHTS: Two very different beers, both very well done. Now I’m going to sneak into a conference and pretend I was there the whole time. Keep this quiet, please.