One The One
Seasonal drinking now commands my life, in the early days I'd never given it much thought until I kept hearing Derek wax poetic about a specific Saison style beer, Sorachi Ace from Brooklyn Brewery, every beer style has the one (God bless you Godfather of Soul) that one beer that makes you a fan of that particular style and helps you grow a palate that when you taste other brewery's attempts at that style it never holds up to the one. Coincidentally, it's also how one fleshes out the risk they're willing to take into trying beer they aren’t comfortable with. Tasting that Saison with its “cool ass looking” bottle immediately made me love the style but it wouldn't be until I tried drinking the same beer a few months later that made me realize why I loved the beer so much. As we were kicking around a Beer Share in the fall someone had put a Sorachi Ace in one of the ice buckets and as soon as I laid eyes on it, I immediately grabbed it and filled my taster, then something strange happened. The beer while still good didn’t have the same oomph as it did on that cool spring evening, and it didn’t hammer home with me till I enjoyed a Russian Imperial sitting around a fire in the snow that having beers and cocktails at certain times in the year are akin to eating a hearty stew in the winter or grilled meat on a hot summers day, and thus I begin my education into Seasonal drinking. Experiencing “The One” again and again every single season and every part of every season became an obsession for me. Finding the best Festbier for Oktoberfest the best pumpkin for spooky season and so on, working my way back from the best perceived beer of each style to others has been as pleasurable as Scrooge McDuck swimming naked through his money. The insane part of this ride is that it makes the year a magic carpet ride, you start looking forward to not only the beer and flavors you've built an intimate relationship with coming back around but also what the next craze the brew masters have in store. How in the hell can you build on Sorachi Ace?! I didn't find out until I had a Tank 7 by the Boulevard Brewing Company and the Plethora of other plays on that particular style that creates infinite flavor combos and possibilities. Justin My 1st foray into seasonal drinking started with Brooklyn Sorachi Ace as well, as it was the 1st actual craft beer I enjoyed in Spring. Justin, I thought you did a fabulous in capturing that beer's flavor profile, and sadly it will no longer be in production; we here at 412beer are going to miss it! However, as I get older and a more seasoned palate, I love nothing more than wild ales and Lambics during the spring and summer months. I would say the appreciation comes from the various beer festivals that I have been to throughout the years during the summer months. After drinking numerous stouts and IPA's, I was looking for something a little different and, in the summer of 2018, I found it! It was an offering from Degrade Brewing called the Purple .. an outstanding balance of berry, tartness, and funk that was mind-blowing! Since that day, I have always made sure that I have a few bottles of DeGarde in the cellar with various others. However, wild ales have some pretty unique flavor profiles while using the natural fruits that surround us every day. I have enjoyed some aged-on Tangerines, Blueberries, and Currants that give a fantastic taste and tartness with a perfect amount of sweetness. I look forward to trying more of these delicious brews throughout the year and hopefully get a chance to get out once the pandemic recedes and have a few in taprooms or beer garden. Until then, I'll continue to drink them here on the porch until the spring season is finally here. Cheers, everyone. Derek When I started drinking beer, it was a gradual step-up. Zima, Smirnoff Ice, and St. Ides Special Brew to start, working my way through the gambit of beverages until I reach Stouts! My first sip of Murphy’s and I was hooked on that Roasted, Creamy, Coffee-like profile, a Stout drinker was born.
It wasn’t until I was on a beach vacation when I realised beer was a seasonal thing. Picked up a 6pack of Left Hand Milk Stout, drank 3 of them in the summer sun and felt HEAVY heavy! The next day I drank a few Coronas and the were refreshing as fuck, so you could say that the Mexican Pale Lager is what turned me into a seasonal drinker. Devon The One, a gift given from Mr. Brown to Bootsy Collins who gave it to the Funkadelic and watched it spread through Black Music then to music everywhere, became the backbone to the industry that you enjoy in your music today. I truly believe it's impossible for the one to find a home, I believe it to be a phantom chalice meant to be passed around from brewery to brewery style to style a moving of the goalpost that continues to create happy accidents and flavor pathways that draw you into the maze of flavor without ever letting you out.