Not so long ago my weekly schedule read like this:
Monday - try beerNowadays I'm spending my time at NIFS or on my bike, in pursuit of my dreams of becoming Lance Armstrong's
Tuesday - drink beer I've had already
Wednesday - try new beer
Thursday - take Gina to liquor store, watch as she buys beer (she can't help herself)
Friday - drink Gina's beer, fall asleep at 9PM
Saturday - watch Fulham Football Club, eat at Brugge or Deano's, drink beer
Sunday - recover
But before I became the worlds' most dedicated cyclist, I had an email conversation with some folks at Magic Hat, Vermont's favorite brewery. They asked "Hey, can we send you some beer?" I may be committed to winning the Tour de France, but I am also committed to accepting beer. So I said yes.
What follows is the result of that free beer offer. I can assure you that my notes are accurate and fair - if the beer wasn't to my liking I wouldn't have bothered writing about it.
Magic Hat Odd Notion Spring 09 - First off, I really dig the label art on this beer. Clearer than any beer I've drank in a long time - like a yellow tinted water. Really light nose, almost macro-pilser-like, but there's a hint of fruit and just a light apple note. Despite the fact that the nose should be ample warning, the first sip is a surprise. Malty and yet still bitter. Return sips from the glass reveal a peppery punch of flavor. This beer is brewed with poppy seed and agave, which give it a surprise sort of twist that I don't recall tasting in any other beer. Despite being a light bodied beer and only 5% ABV, this isn't one you'd drink fast - it's better for slow consideration and flavor discovery. And I just noticed a bicycle on the label. Check this beer out if you want to try something a little different.
Magic Hat HI.P.A.- People from Vermont are hippies, and Magic Hat doesn't want you to forget. The label, which depicts an Angelina Jolie sort of character being attacked by a bubble monster, is the sort of thing that can only be inspired by the hippie mind. Not to mention that Magic Hat didn't dub this beer just an "IPA" - this one is a "Hi(gh) P.A." - like with the drugs.
A golden brown and murky body supports an off-white head. The nose is floral and yet balanced IPA with a hint of feet. A full and sweet malt flavor on awaits on front, and a bitter hop finish leaves me literally smacking my lips in anticipation of the next sip.
Oddly enough, Gina had a sip of this beer and thought it was remarkably drinkable, yet didn't get much for flavor. On the other hand, I got a ton of flavor and wanted to keep it all for myself. So if you're an IPA gal or guy, I think this one is worth looking into.
Thanks to the folks at Magic Hat for the beer. And now I'm off to do sub-lactate threshold intervals in my living room..
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1 Seriously, though, I'm training to race Cat 5/4 this year. Did I ever tell you about the time I hit a deer?
PS. I'm looking for Saturday and Sunday group rides - even in crap weather. Help appreciated.