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Friday, February 16, 2007

Beer Chips and Stegmaier Brewhouse Bock

I got an e-mail from Brett Stern about a week ago. Brett's the guy who is selling Beer Chips, "Potato chips made with beer." Would I like some samples? Well, sure! Send 'em, baby, I love free stuff. So Tuesday I got a box full of two big gold-tone foil bags of Beer Chips, and a press release: "We harvest only the freshest cans of beer from local beer trees. We then squeeze all of the beer juice out to create our proprietary flavor recipe." Really, it says that. Let's get 'em open.

Beer Chips are salted and sugared, a combo that I find unfortunate, but the salt's heavy enough that they do taste like chips, and not some kind of potato dessert. But mostly, they tasted like chips. Just chips. Pretty much completely like chips. Much ado about nothing. But we don't keep potato chips in the house any more (because if we do, I just eat them, which plays hob with my weight-loss program), so my son kept opening the bag and nibbling on them, because he doesn't get anywhere near the amount of chips a teenager should get.

Which led to my having a small handful with lunch today (really, a small one)...and discovering that as they got a bit of oxygen on them, the beer flavor has really developed! It stepped right out on me, definitely there, because I was not expecting it or looking for it. And it's tasty. If you'd like to try something different in a beer snack, Beer Chips are a fun diversion -- and yeah, I know, geek-boy: potato chips are greasy and interfere with your beer-tasting enjoyment and kill the head on your beer. Get a life, willya?

So I needed something to drink with the beer chips, and I had these samples of this year's Stegmaier Brewhouse Bock sitting on the table...Pffft! Done. And yes, it's good like last year's. Chestnut brown, good tight cap of creamy foam, malty aroma rising off the top, with just a hint of toffee/caramel sweetness, and a follow-through of everything in that first swig. How good is it? So good that as soon as I post this, I'm walking out the door to go get a sixtel of it for the weekend, that's how good!


Jack Curtin said...

Gotta agree with you on this one. This beer is amazingly good, better than last year's in my opinion. If I still have a beermeister, I'd have it on tap, maybe more than once. Kept meaning to post that...but now I don't have to.

Congrats on breaking the Perkuno's Hammer story. Tom's already emailed to apologize because he'd promised it to me, but I told him no sweat. If any story out there belonged to you, this one did.

Lew Bryson said...

Yeah, it probably is even better than last year's. The sixtel's in the car now, with a case each of Sly Fox Pils and Dunk: mix and match lagers, me like.

Thanks for the priority on the Hammer. I'll admit to threatening Tom in Germany if he let anyone else break it!

Loren said...

Guess I need to try this again since you may recall we argued over how good this really was last year. Good to see them churning out low cost Lagers though...but...they need to break out into a brewpub setting as well, no? That area of the state is such a dead zone for pubs.


Lew Bryson said...

Can't see The Lion going into a brewpub setting. They're still being VERY conservative on this seasonal line; you recall they were going to do the Anniv. IPA again, and then didn't, and they really should up the price, but they haven't. It would help a lot if the local bars would serve more Lion beers!