Monday, June 1, 2015

Adventure!

Moab Dead Horse Amber

or

Down is optional. Up is mandatory

You will like if:
It's a hundred degrees out and you need something to relax with.
Your beer palette hasn't been obliterated by Double Imperial IBUs (don't worry, we'll get you there.)
You like your salsa mild, and even then it's too spicy for you.

You will not like if:
You need constant stimulation and are bored easily with beer.
The only beers you like are opaque.
Session beers aren't your thing.

Look out, it's a combo beerventure!

New Belgium Snapshot and Ranger IPA

Snapshot is light and tart.
Ranger IPA is bitter and aromatic with a strong hop presence.

I like experiences more than gifts (most of the time), so for Christmas I got the wifey a ticket for One Weekend Adventure. Which was redeemed for our anniversary weekend. We packed the car bright and early, making sure to include plenty of beer (cleverly packed. Is beer illegal to take across state lines? I wasn't sure, but I felt like a smuggler.)

Six-ish hours later, we were driving through Moab and I executed a tactical pursuit vehicle turn to screech into the parking lot of Moab Brewery. I think it was my adventurer's instincts, to be able to sense when a brewery is nearby. Plus it was about lunchtime anyway. I entered a contest to win a canoe, which, when I win, will be put prominently on display in the house, probably in the living room where I will convert it into some kind of couch.

Beer one: Red Rye IPA - Actually my favorite from this brewery. Malt up front, strong rye finish complemented with a strong hop flavor. It went perfectly with the steadily increasing heat outside. 
Beer two: Squeaky Bike Nut Brown Ale - Decent brown flavor with hints of roasty, but just wasn't quite strong enough for how I like my nut browns. 
Beer three: Dead Horse Amber - Light, refreshing. Not very flavorful, but I drank most of this pack in the Southwest heat, and it just worked. 


It's a gorgeous, well, amber color, clear and pure white foamy. The tag line up on top of the can, by the way, says, "You can't beat a dead horse." Which I obviously appreciated. 

It's just super light (which is light, but with a cape) and easy to drink. It's not huge on flavor, but in the desert and the summer heat overlooking my pond, it was a perfect first beer.

Onward.

Six more hours and we came to this:

Probably as illegal as smuggling beer across state lines.

One of the most breathtaking places I've ever seen. I'd been to the Grand Canyon as a wee lad, but I don't think you can fully appreciate it until you return as an adult. It's just....well it's indescribably huge. There aren't any words really to relate how deep and huge and old this place is. We hiked about three miles down into the canyon and hadn't even scratched the surface of hikeable trails. Regardless, we came to this outcropping and had a beer lunch. I chose to pair this moment, this experience with Snapshot from New Belgium, because that's all I could do. I can't describe the Canyon, words can't describe it, so here's just a tiny little snapshot of it. 

Which goes great with the beer. It's marketed as a tart, sour wheat. But it only scratches the surface of sours. It's more of an orange wheat with a tart finish. Just a little snapshot of what sours could be. A great sour starter beer.

The rest of the day was spent hiking the seven and a half mile rim trail, which skirted the Canyon through desert brush and trees. I chose Ranger for this experience pairing, because I mean, obviously. We were exploring, on a weekend adventure. Ranger just seemed to fit. It has a woodsy flavor, and an IPA goes well with hot weather. IPAs came about by dumping hops into English beers to survive the hot weather of India after all, so an IPA in the desert felt natural. 

The trail led to Hermit's Rest:

The beard protects from harmful UV rays.


And rest we did. It was a fourteenish mile day, a three day hike stuffed into one. But that's what a weekend adventure is. Id' like to return some day to raft or camp down in the canyon proper. Another adventure for another day. 



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