Lisa’s Wedding Shower!

This is why I sometimes run so far behind in posts. Because I’m lazy and also because I know I have some absolutely behemoth post with a bazillion pictures that will require two days to organize and write about. So, this has been on my plate for a while, Lisa’s wedding shower.

That morning we went to the church hall, set up, decorated and all that jazz. Tara and I took a break at one point in the morning and went out to my car and split the Weihenstephaner Vitus of Bayerische Staatsbrauerie Weihenstephen at Freising, Germany at 7.7% abv. (Damn, I don’t even know how to begin to say any of that!)

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It was the best possible pick-me-up imaginable! With renewed determination we continued with the shower. It was delightful. Then we cleaned up.

After a very long day, we headed out to the South Side Saloon!

I started off the evening with a Gouden Carolus Easter of Brouwerij Het Anker of Mechelen, Belgium at 10% abv, that they had on draught!! Although I took this picture with the bottles so that I could have something good to photograph. This also compares the labels from last year and this year. (This year on the left, last year on the right)

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I have been waiting to try this beer for about nine months since I learned of its existence when we visited the Het Anker brewery! Such a delicious beer! Velvety smooth, candied apples, plums, caramel, black licorice. High carbonation with tons of effervescent little bubbles, yet still your typical heavy Belgian beer.

I believe after this beer, I began to split bottles and beers with people. Tara and I tackled the Positive Contact, an Imperial Belgian Style Wheat beer, by Dogfish Head Brewery of Milton, DE at 9% abv.

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Lots of yeast and apples. Very cidery. The beer is also brewed with cilantro and cayenne. I didn’t really taste any cilantro, but is does have a nice spiciness to it. Warming, it must be from the cayenne, but not overpowering.

And then it was back to something dark, Heresy by Weyerbacher Brewery of Easton, PA at 8% abv.

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This beer was just perfect for the day. It was super chilly out and beginning to get dark, made me want to snuggle down and enjoy this beer. Chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, molasses. And almost completely still, very little carbonation. Mellow and so enjoyable.

Shout out to my favorite bar tender Joe! It was his last regular time bartending at the Saloon before he moves over to run the South Side Saloon Brew Thru right down the street! I haven’t been there yet, but hopefully they have a wonderful selection of import and craft beers!

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And then the night takes a turn for the crazy! We noticed that the Saloon had balloons up everywhere all over the walls and that the balloons were for sale at $1 each. This made us curious why anyone would want to buy a balloon, so of course we did. When you pop them, you get a little ticket that tells you your prize!! I won a Franziskaner Frisbee! And someone else won a beer glass!

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This was too exciting to pass up! We each bought 20 balloons! It was a popping frenzy!

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We won completely useless but very fun beer related things!

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The balloon aftermath. What a disaster! I think I left with a t-shirt, Frisbee, two Spaten mugs, two Franziskaner glasses, a blow up beer bottle, and some Unibroue sings. I gave away quite a bit of the glassware when I had more than my matching sets.

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And I managed to finish off the night with a KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout) by Founders Brewing Company of Grand Rapids, MI at 11.2% abv.

I think this is one of the better bourbon barrel stouts that I’ve had. Smooth and full of character, oak and chocolate, bourbon obviously, and vanilla. Full mouthfeel, a heavy beer yet silky smooth. Very nice!

After Thanksgiving

The day after Thanksgiving in Johnstown, where can you find us? Tulune’s Southside Saloon of course!

Upon entering, I saw Joe (my favorite bartender ever) behind the bar and he gave me a bottle of his home made wine! Thanks Joe! I haven’t tried it yet but I cant wait till I do!

Best of all, I got to catch up with my ladies Tara, Cindy, and Lisa!

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I couldn’t resist and started off the night with another Southern Tier Crème Brulee Stout mixed with Kasteel Rouge. Such a delicious treat!

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The bar was packed but we managed to get a table!

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Next, I ordered a Delirium Noel by Brouwerij Huyghe of Melle, Belgium considered a Strong Dark Ale at 10% abv.

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I ordered it on tap, and the bartenders must like me there because I got a huge pour into a really big glass! I know, the glass looks average, but I was expecting a smaller Delirium glass. This was quite a bit to drink and when I finished, I was beginning to feel the alcohol!

I love the Christmas beers! It’s a great holiday beer that isn’t too strong with the spices. Sweet like plums and cherries with very little hops. The alcohol is very well hidden. I think this is a much better beer than their Delirium Tremens. I hardly every order the DT but I will order the Noel whenever possible!

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Next up, I didn’t know what I wanted. It was really crowded, getting to the bar or the beer cooler was going to be a challenge. Luckily bartender Greg came by and I told him generally what I like and to surprise me!

He came back with the perfect beer! Thank you Greg! And it was a beer I’ve never had before! I got the Harpoon Chocolate Stout by Harpoon Brewery of Boston Massachusetts at 5.9% abv.

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Lots of bittersweet chocolate, and almost a dry aftertaste. Maybe that’s because its not super sweet. (Although I did switch to this after having a very sweet beer, maybe it just tastes burnt chocolatey bitter by comparison) I was surprised by Harpoon. I would definitely have this beer again!

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One thing I cannot and will not do at the Saloon is take shots. Especially their “Taints” the energy drink they mix in is just to candy sweet for me, but apparently everyone else loves them!

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You go, Tara!

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Eventually we moved into the back room where there was a band playing and as the night wore on, I ran into a couple of familiar faces! Shannon and I got to catch up for a bit over a beer!

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And that must be it for the night because we were all pretty smashed, and my pictures from here on out are completely ridiculous and nonsensical!

Like this one….

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Haha!!

The Land of Death and Shadows

This is what Jack jokingly calls Johnstown, PA, where I am from. Yes, it has super shitty weather and we never see the sun, but it’s where I call home, and I have a blast every time I get to come back and chill with my Johnstown friends. I actually had to come back because my driver’s license expired and I needed to get a new one with a new picture and everything (haha, yes, I still have a PA license!)

Friday night, I was feeling a little under the weather with a lot of sinus pressure, but we still made it out to my favorite bar on earth, Tulune’s South Side Saloon. This is the bar where I began to learn about good beer. As soon as I walked in I saw Joe, who has been voted Johnstown’s best bartender a few years in a row now. He really knows his beers. Every time I  walk in he updates me on what’s new and knows exactly what I will like and what I should try. This time when I walked in, he was pretty busy but he came over and gave me a Chimay bottle opener, win!

I got the Troubadour Obscura, which is from Belgium and is considered a mild stout.

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Unfortunately I couldn’t really smell anything and it really took away from the taste and experience of the beer. Luckily, I’ve had this beer many times before and I was able to appreciate the taste that I knew I was missing out on.

I was worried I wouldn’t get to see Tara and Mike since they had to go to a wedding in Ohio the next day. Mike had to work, but Tara made it out for a little bit!

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I ended up only having that one beer because not being able to taste anything was really depressing. But being back in my favorite bar with my favorite people made up for it!