Nov 28 2010 1:44 pm

thanksgiving beer

I really want to like it.  I really do.  I thoroughly enjoy dark lagers.  They are clean, quaffable with the rich, warm, deceivingly complex character of Munich malts.  Unfortunately, Sly Fox dunkel lager is a shade too acidic for my taste.  I think it's fermentation acidity, though I suppose it could be hop bitterness.  It may even be water hardness.  A good dunkel lager should be softer all around.  Also, it appears the novelty of craft beer in cans is not enough to carry a beer for me anymore. 

Troegs Doppelbock, Troegenator, is a lot of beer with big sweetness and big malt flavor.  Huge body but not syrupy.  It does well with a plain piece of turkey breast meat, cutting through the tooth sticking dryness, but anything else, anything with a hint of moisture or oil, dark meat or gravied breast meat, will ride down your throat on a flood of sugar.  It is a fine beer to consume after the meal on its own perhaps with cigar or pipe.  Yes, cigar or pipe.   

The Ayinger weizenbock is hot.  Not big Belgian trainwreck hot, but hot.  Awkward complex fermentation character, fruity esters and some citrus and tropical fruit notes.  The fermentation heat did poorly the almost spritzy level of carbonation.  Pale in color and not very good, in my opinion, which is a shame because their dunkel lager is one of my favorite beers. 

Aventinus wheat doppelbock has a hefty sweet-enough dark malt character with understated fruity esters, some clove and other spice notes and a hint of honey.  Eventhough it’s stronger and less carbonated than the Ayinger, I perceived it as having a lighter body with much less heat in the back of the mouth and in the nose.  While the complexity is confusing at first, this beer settles into a very pleasing routine. 

The Aventinus went best with thanksgiving dinner: a fork full of turkey, vinegar and bacon green beans, mashed potatoes, a quick stab at half a mustard carrot, a slug of the Aventinus.  Like a patchwork flavor net it grabbed hold of everything and carried it down in a pleasing mélange of wholesome living and dreams of Bavaria.  The charming, snow capped, buxom Bavaria.  Not the backwards, racist, borderline Nazi Bavaria.  Obviously. 


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