Wednesday, October 07, 2009


When I started this blog in early 2006, I very willingly admitted that I didn't know what I was talking about. Sure, I'd been regularly drinking great beer for nearly 15-16 years by that point, but I not only lacked the vocabulary to talk about it, I was a total greenhorn when it came to brands, styles and seeking out what was truly great. It's one of the true reasons I wanted to blog about beer in the first place, because I figured it'd force me to get relatively smart in a hurry. Remember, I'm the guy who in 2006 called AVENTINUS WEIZEN-EISBOCK "the worst beer I've ever had", and then earlier this year re-tried it and realized that it was a masterpiece. One small project I've got going now is to re-try some of those beers I wrote about three years ago to see if they hold up. Believe it or not, I had only my second STONE IPA - which I rated 10/10 back in '06 - just yesterday.

So guess what. I wasn't a totally stupid thirtysomething back then. STONE IPA is the most floral, citrus-heavy IPA I think I've ever had. Strong and assertive in its hoppiness, it still retains an element of easy drinkability even for the non-hop-inclined. There's a reason why in 2006 that STONE BREWING was widely considered to be the greatest craft brewer in the country, and why fellas like Aaron Goldfarb and myself are sometimes ambivalent about their wares three years-plus on. But STONE IPA is one of the all-time greats, I'm solidly convinced after last night's pint, which was consumed in San Diego, only miles from the source. 10/10, and I'm sticking by it this time.

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