Drunken Speculation has been running for almost twelve months, so I thought we were due for a list-based look back at the year that was. It’s the kind of lazy thing bloggers do when they get close to their summer hiatus.
While we could have done lists ad nauseum of our favourite beers, breweries or bars, I’ve decided to both broaden and narrow the scope of this exercise considerably by listing my five favourite beer things from 2013. ammo’s will be posted
on Sunday next year.
#1 New session beers
People talk about 2013 being the year that craft went mainstream or the year of the sour, I think the best thing that happened was the release of Mountain Goat’s Summer Ale. Not just that, there was also the Little Creatures IPA. And I finally got Stone & Wood Pacific Ale. Plus there’s 4 Pines and Holgate.
It may just be that my palate has gone on a wild journey this year and is suffering a bit of fatigue. Uncomplicated, sessionable beers offer respite from the endless Untappd badge-oriented check-ins and pages of tasting notes without compromising on an enjoyable drinking experience. As an added bonus, most local bottle shops are now offering more party beer choices than James Squire, Matilda Bay and Little Creatures Pale Ale.
My favourite, however, was the Archive’s annual blowout: Armakeggon. While this might seem a strange pick over GABS, Armakeggon had a couple things going for it: great, warm weather, spacious outdoor seating, more than just one person I knew present and a quick stumble home to my own bed. Oh and Craison, which may be the weirdest beer of this, or any, year.
I approach my beer glassware with roughly the same fervour as most people approach religion. I simply feel that something is missing if I’m drinking out of anything other than a glass shape appropriate to the style. Hell, I devoted three posts to this very topic.
The Spiegelau range of five beer glasses (hef, tumbler, tulip, IPA and pilsner) provides an appropriate container for any beer. The glass itself is light yet robust and perfectly sculpted to maximising sensory input. Sometimes, I feel like the beer just isn’t worthy. That’s why XXXX gets drunk from the can.
#4 Moo Brew
How freaking good is Moo Brew? I named their Dark Ale in my top 5 of 2012 and over 2013, I’ve only gone to appreciate them more. Of their core range, the pale ale, hefeweizen, Belgian pale ale and dark ale range from good to great and their seasonals, including vintage stout, saison and barrel-aged tripel, are so on-style and among the best of their kind. Certainly, Moo Brew continues to be one of my favourite breweries.
I may be a little bit biased but, despite the name of the blog being what it is, I’m actually proud of what ammo and I have managed to achieve this year. It’s taken a lot of hard work but the worst is behind us: it takes much more effort to go from zero to something, than something to more something.
We’ve met some cool people, drank a lot of good and some bad beers and I feel like I’ve actually accomplished something, which was kind of the goal from the get-go. I’ll prattle on more about Drunkspec’s first year on Friday.