Archive for February 13th, 2008

I praised the session beers in a blog post recently, but I have to admit that, given the choice, I would usually choose a big beer. An extreme beer, something with more punch. These are the ones giving the real wow factor.

These are the barley wines, the sour ales, the trappists, the Scandinavian imperial stouts, the American IPAs. Most of them have a fairly high alcohol content, but there are exceptions, like the Belgian lambics.

Some of these beers are traditional, while others go where no beer has gone before. Some are smooth and easy to like, some are definitely not in Beer 101.

I like to get to know the various styles, to figure out what the brewers have tried to do. Some beers are novelties, some are experiments that both brewer and drinker try to forget as soon as possible.

It is among those brews I make real discoveries. So while I will happily down a liter or two of a Bavarian lager or wheat beer, I would really love better access to the bigger beasts. I have only had glimpses of US beers so far, hopefully the distribution of American micros in Europe will get better in the years to come. But there are splendid beers at the extreme end of the spectrum in Denmark, too. I need to get to Copenhagen more often! (The photo is from the splendid plan b cafe in Copenhagen)

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