Friday, August 28, 2009

Beer Of The Week (Vol XXI)

This week's Beer of the Week is brought to you as always by the fine folks at Glen Lake Wine & Spirits, the one stop shop for the discerning drinker in your life.

R.E.M.--Nightswimming Lyrics

Nightswimming deserves a quiet night
I'm not sure all these people understand
It's not like years ago,
The fear of getting caught,
Of recklessness and water
They cannot see me naked
These things, they go away,
Replaced by everyday

Nightswimming, remembering that night
September's coming soon
I'm pining for the moon
And what if there were two
Side by side in orbit
Around the fairest sun?
That bright, tight forever drum
Could not describe nightswimming

Is it really the end of summer already? Okay,we all know that summer technically lasts until the Autumnal Equinox (September 22nd this year). But in our hearts we know that once August is cruelly torn off your calendar it's all but over. You may attempt to hold on a bit longer with a big Labor Day hurrah, but your state of denial doesn't last long. September means leaves changing color, a night chill in the air, and the start of school. September is fall and fall means the end of summer.

Not that there's anything wrong with fall. In fact, it's my favorite season. You get the beginning of football season, the baseball playoffs, and beautiful clear crisp days with good sleeping weather at night. And Oktoberfest and the many beers that come with it. I hope to start reviewing some of them here soon.

Until then, let's savor the closing days of summer by looking at another warm weather beer. From Colorado, New Belgium's Skinny Dip:

New Belgium's Skinny Dip started out as a challenge from our founder Jeff to brewmaster, Peter Bouckaert. Jeff was looking for a full-bodied, highly drinkable beer for after workouts--something a little lighter than the rest of the portfolio. Peter, a Belgian, responded: "Only in America would I be asked to brew a beer with no calories and less alcohol." The challenge was to give the beer body and complexity not usually found in beers at the lighter end of the spectrum. Cascade hops frolic with a hint of lime leaf, making Skinny Dip a bright, refreshing splash for the summer season.

Besides evoking fond memories of summer, I also think the name is subtly directed at the subconscious of the drinker the beer is catering too. At only 114 calories per 12oz serving and 4.2% alcohol, Skinny Dip is definitely on the lighter side of the scale. You might feel skinny enough to not worry about getting naked and taking a dip. Or maybe a name is just a name.

The distinct brown bottle is a New Belgium standard. The decorative label features hops on a gold border framing a portrait of a mountain lake. We see sandals and clothes on the shore and a ripple in the water indicating the location of the dipper. A serene scene of summer.

Beer Style: Blonde Ale

Alcohol by Volume: 4.2%

COLOR (0-2): Gold and light amber. 2

AROMA (0-2): Faint citrus. 1

HEAD (0-2): Decent color, volume, and lacing. 2

TASTE (0-5): Malt, grain, and citrus flavors with traces of hops. 2

AFTERTASTE (0-2): Not much there. Fades fast. 1

OVERALL (0-6): For what it is--a lighter-bodied, low-calorie summer beer--Skinny Dip isn't bad. It's very drinkable and would make for a good lawn mowing beer. Beats the heck out of a Coors Light. But if you're looking for a summer beer with something more going on, you're best advised to look elsewhere. 2

TOTAL SCORE (0-19): 10

No comments:

Post a Comment