Barley Mowat 

Beer Fight: East vs West Round Two

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Last year, I sat down at a table with my good buddy Jer, and we drank beer. What made this time unusual, though, was that we were critically analyzing six beers to see which coast of North America produced the best oat soda.

The combatants were from a variety of must-have breweries: Hair of the Dog, Maine, Captain Lawrence, Parallel 49, Cascade Barrel House and Evil Twin all made an appearance, but sadly East took the title 2-1. Tables were flipped, fires were started, punches were thrown and I’ve been informed that I may have pulled a knife. I have vague memories of a brief hostage taking, as well. All in all, I think I took it pretty well.

Another summer brings another beach retreat, and another beach retreat beings another round of East vs West. Will Jer retain his shoddily made driftwood trophy? Will I triumph and accept it as gracefully as I am wont to do? Only time will tell.

First up, though, the contenders:


I was humbled last year. West is best but the evidence was quite clearly in my mouth. I couldn’t believe it. This time, I’m going in less cocky and with more safety. Instead of trusting my two month old IPA to be great, I’m taste testing three local competitors the day-of to ensure only the freshest IPA gets in.

As well, I’m digging into the cellar and upping my BC representation to a solid 2/3. Let’s do this.

Lighthouse Belgian Black (2013)
Belgian Strong – 9.0%
Ratebeer: 97;95

Batch two of Dean’s best beer ever is drinking pretty much perfectly right now, and I’ve been keeping a select few in my cellar just waiting for a moment like this to happen. Time to bust one open and let the world know about it.

Logsdon Peche n Brett (2014)
Sour/Wild Ale – 10%
Ratebeer: 100;99

Okay, I didn’t have a bottle of my own to contribute to the cause. In fact, I had to pull in some favours to even get this. Okay fine, I had to pull more than favours. At night. In an alley. I’m a whore paid in beer, is what I’m saying. It’ll be worth it though, as this is one of the best beers ever made by a brewery not exactly known for making shitty beer.

Central City Red Racer IPA
India Pale Ale – 6.5%
Ratebeer: 99;99

Knowing that great hoppy IPAs live and die by how fresh their hops are, I put Driftwood Fat Tug, Central City Red Race IPA and newcomer Four Winds IPA to a blind taste test and choose the winner. The winner was Central City, by a country mile. This could be a factor of the beer simply being fresher, or maybe that shiny new, state of the art brewery with all its fancy quality control has something to do with this.


After winning a contest I didn’t expect to win last year, I decided to make it even harder on myself this time by restricting my picks to beers from NYC. So, though I’m bringing along some nice beers from Maine (Lunch) and Maryland (Stillwater), all three of my picks are from brewers in the 5 boroughs. Actually, all three are from brewers in Brooklyn. NYC has a brewing scene in its infancy, so it wasn’t easy picking, but I think I’m representing strongly.

Evil Twin Imperial Biscotti Break
Imperial Stout – 9.8%
Ratebeer: 100;100

Last year I lost this category with Even More Jesus. I’m pretty sure I’m just going to bring another Evil Twin beer until one actually wins, because I’m stubborn, and because they have SUCH GOOD NAMES. Also, there’s apart of me which believes that drinking ET beers will magically summon a portal to Luksus, which would be pretty excellent. I made a game time decision between this and Love you With My Stout. We’ll see how it plays out.

Grimm Ales Bees in the Trappe
Bier au Miele – 8%
Ratebeer: 82;74

Grimm is a gypsy brewery from Brooklyn. Their beers are consistently interesting and well-brewed. This one is a Tripel, brewed with honey. Largely I picked this one because it’s super small-batch, and it’s something that no one out here will likely get the chance to try. It’s the underdog of the lot, for sure.

Other Half Green Diamonds
American Double – 8.6%
Ratebeer: 89;47

Other Half is the best new brewery in America, and Green Diamonds is their best beer. This is a resinous double in the vein of Heady Topper. Brewed with Golden Promise malt and Australian Galaxy hops. The only risk here is that the growler I brought is showing its age, but it was counter-pressure filled and I’ve kept it cold, so… fingers crossed.

How did it all play out? Tune in later this evening on Twitter, or later this week right here for the results.

Written by chuck

July 28th, 2014 at 5:46 pm

Posted in Beer and You

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