Friday, January 3, 2014

Beer Blogging Friday, The Session #83 – Against the Grain

The first Friday of every month, a group of beer bloggers around the globe come together to write a post for The Sessions, also known as Beer Blogging Friday.

For the month of January, Rebecca, who writes The Bake and Brew, chose the topic, "How much is our taste or opinion of a craft beer affected by what friends and the craft beer community at large thinks? What beer do you love that no one else seems to get? Or what beer do you say “no thanks” to that everyone can’t get enough of?"  

I love this topic as it is something that seems to be a topic of discussion on a fairly regular basis.  For myself, it may not be so much a specific beer that I may not like that others favor as much as a specific style.  I feel I am still quite young in my craft beer journey, having only been introduced to craft beer in the past few years.  As with many craft beer drinkers, I found IPAs as my favorite style very quickly and still tend to favor the style.  While there are beers from styles I may not usually like, I will still try them.  

I have found there are beers that I do not like upon first sip, but when given a second chance, I have fallen in love with them.  One beer that comes to mind is Beachwood BBQ & Brewing System of a Stout.  When I first tasted this GABF bronze medal winning beer, which many of my friends were raving about, I wasn't a fan.  Of course, it happens to have upon first sip been one of my boyfriend's favorite beers.  When bottles of the beer were released, I made the trek to Long Beach to get bottles for my boyfriend, not thinking I would even drink any of them.  I decided to have another try of the beer and it is now among one of my favorites.  Not because anyone told me to try it again, nor because so many people loved it, but because I found to like the beer on my own.  

For myself, my tastes and opinions of any craft beer is not affected by my friends or what the craft beer community at large thinks.  I'm thankful that I have access to such a wide variety of beers and styles of beers on a regular basis.  It is definitely an exciting time in the craft beer community and industry.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

New Year Kickoff

My view at Stone Brewing World Bistro and Gardens
The first day of a new year has promise and hope, like an unopened bottle of beer. 
Yesterday, I ventured down to one of my favorite craft beer destinations, Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens.  Whenever I go to Stone, I feel as if I'm very far away even though it's less than 100 miles from home.  The gardens are filled with out of the way areas to sit, relax, and enjoy the ambience complete with water falls. 

Cheers to the first beers of 2014!

My boyfriend and I ordered our favorite appetizer, beer pretzels, which never let us down. 
I had a 2006 Double Bastard Ale while my boyfriend had the Tiger Cub Saison, both made by Stone Brewing.  We had a delicious lunch, I had a side order of beer mac n cheese, with both broccoli and sausage.  My boyfriend had steak which was amazing!

Love the pretzels at Stone!

As our meal was winding down, we ordered one more beer, a CANlaboration from Oskar Blues and Sun King Brewing, the Deuce.  The can was unique and the beer was very tasty! 

The Deuce