Tuesday, January 12, 2010

BS Awards - Beer of Year

"Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy." So opined my favorite patriot of all, Benjamin Franklin. Few can argue that he may have been one of the most well rounded and internationally beloved Americans. I love that quote, but I will stop short of having it tattoed on my beer belly.

My second favorite patriot, Samuel Adams, has emerged from the past decade as a stable on the BS Beer of the Year list, the most hallowed of all of the BS Awards. I take this selection seriously and endeavor to sample as many different varieties as I can during the year and giving those of distinction the opportunity to prove their abilities in my mouth again and again and again.

For the 20th straight year, Beer has taken home the BS Award for Beverage of the Year. It has won the BSie every year since wresting the title from Bacardi Breezers oh so many years ago. It is the 56 game hitting streak, the back-to-back no-hitters and the 2,632 consecutive games played streak all rolled into one. Red wine did give Beer it's first serious challenge in years, but Beer was able to stave off the challenge.

As B-Frank said, " There has never been a good war or a bad peace." That's not relevant here, but true nonetheless.

1. Sam Adams Light - There I said it. Sammy Light takes beer of the year. It is remarkable in its unremarkability. It is a very good beer. There is nothing crazy about it. It isn't better with a lemon in it. It isn't better poured into a glass. I've never had it on tap. It is good no matter when I have it, where I have it and with whom I enjoy it. I will have it in a box. I will have it with a fox. I will have it on a train. I will have it in the rain. I will drink your light beer, Sam I Am, I will drink just the same.

2. Samuel Smith Nut Brown - Surprisingly moving ahead of Fuller's London Pride in my London beer category. The Nut Brown is kind of a kickass Newcastle. Smooth but with a little more of a bitch hand.

3. Alaskan Amber - How did I forget this on my original list? Must be too many Alaskan Ambers! I discovered this gem while cruising through the Inland Passage in 2008. Tilting one back now make me think of coasting by beautiful scenery, gorgeous conifers, maybe a mountain goat, floating hunks of iceberg, uniquely gorgeous green water... Tasty thoughts and a tasty visual.

4. Harvest Moon - I do like the Blue Moon variety of beers, especially on tap. My fave from this brewery, edging out old school Blue Moon and Spring-style Rising Moon, is their amber Fall beer, Harvest Moon. It is a pumpkin ale, and who couldn't use a little pumkin in their beer? I like many fall beers. Sam Adams Octoberfest is a long standing favorite and Pyramid's Broken Rake is hit or miss depending on the storage temperature.

5. Newcastle - I can't have a beer of the year list without bringing up the Queen Mother of all excellent beers. It is never the wrong choice when bellying up to the bar. It is good on a cold, damp night or on a nice summer day. Makes you feel alive and happy just having one in your hand. I am surprised Santa didn't bring me this smokin Newcastle inspired kicks .

5b. Pyramid Amber on Tap - The return of the Amber in the Pyramid Alehouse begat much rejoicing. Now if the service and food were even reasonable, I'd make many more trips by there even though it is not quite on the way home.

There are plenty other worthwhile beers that didn't make the top 5 this year and I look forward to enjoying many more as the new decade is poured out in front of me. Don't forget my second favorite beer is always one that a friend buys for me so don't be shy to step up to that plate. Cheers!

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