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TARZANA, CA, United States
Hello food, wine & beer pals! Welcome to my photo-journal of food, wine and beer adventures. I'm pictured on the right and my home brewing pal, Aron is on the left. Years ago I started watching the Food Network, saving recipe's, making recipe's, trying new things, tasting new things, and it's all blossomed from there, including the weekly tastings (beer & wine) at BevMo. I'm hooked on variety and continuing my search for tasty goodness all over the world. Please feel free to email me with comments and ideas at FoodieWinonBrew@yahoo.com Bon Appetito!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

BEER TASTING @ METCHE'S (prounounced: Metch-EE)

BEER TASTING @ METCHE’S (pronounced: Metch-ē)

It’s taken me a while to post the tasting I did with Metche last August, 2010 (yeah, I know) but please forgive me, at least its making its appearance now. I’ve been to quite a few tastings and also created the opportunity to share the great beer tasting experience with my friends and family. So, here’s hoping all you beer lovers get inspired to do a "tasting," and in doing so, create a forum for talking about beer as well as drinking it! Please drink and host responsibly; have a cab company number handy for the end of the night.
Because of my fondness for tasting brew, I preach the magical culture of beer tasting when I can, including the sacramental aspects of imbibing god’s liquid miracle. Before I grew to love beer, I studied music in college and have since kept in touch with one of my favorite teachers. Now that she’s retired, I schlep down to her retirement village in Laguna Woods for visits. On my last pilgrimage down from L.A. we did a tasting. I must have told her about my weekly worship at the temple of BevMo (Beverages and More) for beer tastings on Fridays, from 4pm to 7pm (a.k.a. “Happy Hour”) for only a $1 donation. At those tastings there are anywhere from 5 beers to as many as 14—that was when a craft brew distributer was there with their line of brews. So it was all that magic in one stop at the tasting.  Back then BevMo charged $4--still a great deal for a tasting!

Metche, my retired musicology teacher, has an appreciation for beer, coming from good German stock and Germans are world known for their appreciation of beer. I brought a total of 12 beers which we divided over 2 days for moderation—I didn’t want to get Metche “tanked” as it were, so I opted for spreading the beer love over 2 days. For palate cleansing I had soft pretzels (mustard optional) and soda water. Looking back, I should have melted some cheese for a fondue effect, but I digress…perhaps next time. For a little variety I threw in fruit beers, which is not like me, but since I’ll try anything once and it was the end of summer, I thought “what the heck, let’s get some fruit beer on!”

Day one, we tried five beers, the first five below. Here’s the way I set up the tasting: I start with a lager (generally milder to taste), throw in the middle fruit beers, then go with more complex and rich tastes in the spectrum of brewing, ending with the most bitter. Going light to intense with taste, you'll be able to enjoy the spectrum without palate ruination.  In the order below you can see how this was accomplished (beers 1-5, were tasted on day 1; beers 6-12 were done on day 2). This was something that the pourer does at BevMo’s beer tastings on Fridays, (tastings usually every Friday from 4pm to 7pm for $2, flight of 5). There’s a beer judge that frequents the tasting that taught the “pouring whipper-snapper” the efficacies of this strategy: the palate warms up on the simple stuff, but isn’t too destroyed until the bitter, complex beers at the end. My compliments to “Jim the Judge” for the ideal form to shoot for in a tasting, it has proven time and again a good idea. The beers were selected randomly based on ones I’ve tried before and ones I was interested in trying at the time.

1. Sierra Nevada “Summerfest”

2. Sea Dog Apricot Wheat Beer

3. Lost Coast Brewing Tangerine Wheat Beer

4. Paulaner Munchen Hefe-Weizen Natural Wheat

5. Anderson Valley ESB

6. Bitburger Premium Beer

7. Sea Dog Wild Blueberry

8. Wells Banana Bread

9. Samuel Smith Old Brewery Pale Ale

10. Aron Faria’s Home Brew Porter

11. Le Chouffe

12. Firestone Walker IPA

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