Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Good thing this case is locked.
Well, I made it back from Europe in one piece. It was a great trip, and I will get my photos organized eventually and try to post a slide show here and all of that good stuff. I would have to say that the highlight was visiting Cantillion (pronounced: "can-TEE-on", not "can-til-yun") outside of Brussels, but the La Trappe abbey was really cool too. So far that is the only true Trappist brewery that I have been to at this point. But aside from the breweries (and we visited a lot), we hit a ton of beer bars across three countries. And of course the Germans tried to kill us with delicious pork. I don't know what the pig did to piss those people off, but that is honestly just about all they eat. Pigs and potatoes. And bread. Pork and carbs. That's it. Cheese every now and then, but mostly just pork. Gravy gets involved occasionally, but that is pork based, so it fits with the theme. And I don't need to tell you about how much beer those people drink. That is well understood. Listen: If you like to drink in the morning, but hate the awkward and condescending looks you get, then Germany is the place for you. They look at you funny if you aren't drinking a beer before lunch. And there is no such thing as having "a" beer with those people. Sit down and get comfortable pal. You're not going anywhere anytime soon.

Anyway, on the right is a picture of something fastened to the exterior wall of a building in Amsterdam. I don't know what it is or what kind of message it is trying to get across. It looks like a shrine to human anatomy, where you sacrifice empty cigarettes to the holy torso. God knows the Europeans aren't going to give up any real tobacco. They love that shit. I think when you are 18 over there you get a voter's registration card and a carton of cigarettes, whether you want them or not. For as progressive as Europeans are in many ways, they haven't really taken to heart the whole "smoking is bad for you" thing. I am sure there are plenty of things they don't understand about America, so who am I to judge? You wanna smoke? Then by all means, enjoy it, and the increasingly shortened rest of your life.

Here is some important news from this country though:

  • Whitney Houston died? Apparently that happened while I was gone. What is surprising is not that she died, but that anyone acted like they hadn't seen that coming for about 15 years. I am not trying to be a jerk or insensitive, but the woman was a train wreck. Sorry, that's just a fact.
  • There are only 6 spots left at the Victory Beer Dinner in Cumming next Wednesday, February 29th. If you were planning on going, you better get your tickets now. Just go to www.tacomac.com and look for "Events" in the upper right. The menu looks outstanding.
  • Plan on being at The Fred Bar on Friday, March 2nd. There will be a group of 8-10 Left Hand VIP's there all the way from Colorado to help kick off their Nitro Milk Stout in bottles. This is the first nitro bottle without a widget. Need an explanation on that? Better show up next Friday night. There will be a bunch of Left Hand drafts (and a few really special ones), plus a small cask of Milk Stout. And, of course, you can be the first kid on the block to try the Nitro Milk in a bottle (hint: It is really good!).
  • On Wednesday, March 7th we will be pouring a firkin of Brooklyn Irish Stout at Perimeter. Trust me on this one, casks from Brooklyn Brewing are very rare, and they filled this one especially for us. By "us" I mean Taco Mac and its customers, so it was filled for you. Come out and drink one with me if you can.
That is a quick update for now. More to come in the next few weeks, but that should at least get you started. Have a great week everyone.

From My September Trip-Sierra Brewhouse

From My September Trip-Sierra Brewhouse
This is the top floor of the brewhouse, with buckets of fresh hops about to go into the kettles.