02 January 2009

Last of 2008, First of 2009

Between the weather, the postponement of the Inner Harbor fireworks until New Year's Day evening, and personal stuff going on in my household, this New Year's Eve was a bust. (And this comes from a Scot who pays more attention to New Year's than Christmas, on a personal level if not a commercial level.)

Last draft beer of 2008: Brewers Art Resurrection, at Parkside Tavern on Harford Rd. en route home from work that day.

Last bottled beer of 2008: Abita Jockamo IPA, at Hamilton Tavern on Harford Road, a half-hour after the previous beer. $2 a bottle, I'm writing about cheap beer for Mid-Atlantic Brewing News, and I had no idea Louisiana had a damned clue what an IPA was. Not bad. Not terrific, but definitely drinkable.

First beer of 2009: J.W. Lees Harvest Ale 1997 Vintage, at Max's Taphouse ca. 6:30 pm Jan. 1st. I couldn't have picked a better beer to start the year. Followed by sips of my wife's Otter Creek Winter Ale, a raspberry brown akin to the old Pete's Wicked Winter. (Left to right above: JW Lees, Otter Creek, wife.)

First bottled beer of 2009: a five-year-old 750 ml bottle of New Glarus Raspberry Tart, secured during a Midwest road trip prior to my wedding, opened after returning home from the fireworks, 7-7:30 pm Jan. 1st. Notes: it gets MUCH tarter and more bracing in its acidity with age.