I give up. That’s right, I give up. I was going to make a glorious comeback this afternoon with a post to finish up my liquor store series, and it all got deleted.
So, in an effort to keep myself from flying into a rage, I’m going to sum the whole thing up in two or three paragraphs (minus the last part, which I never got to anyways).
The third and fourth liquor stores I went to left me scared to come back — the first because I don’t think the cashiers actually worked there, the second one because I think he might’ve been an old drug/gun peddler. Also, the second one kept all of the beer behind the counter, minus one six pack that I bought that ensured I never, ever go back.
At the first liquor store I got a Hoegaarden Belgian White, which some guy who took my money recommended to me. It was surprisingly good, even though it took me a couple of tries to get into. I ended up giving it a 91 for its sweet freshness and the fact that it was so different from what I thought it would be.
The second store had a very sad selection, so I got Samuel Adams Boston Lager, which I’ve had before but had never reviewed. It looked amber and beautiful, but it tasted stale. It still had a month to go on its drink-by date, but who knows what that guy did to the beer before I bought it. It got an 86.
The third beer was called Famosa Lager, the “Pride of Guatemala.” It may or may not have been a year past its sell-by date (which I didn’t notice when I bought it), but I thought it might have promise. It didn’t. It was like a Corona Light minus the flavors that make me think of the beach and that pretentious lime trick I do where I put a lime in and turn the bottle upside down with my thumb inside. It tasted like corn and astringent and bubbles. It made my mouth feel sad. I gave it a 55 for being in a beer bottle, having alcohol and looking kind of like a real beer.
But here’s where things went right for me. I found a decent liquor store last week! It’s next to the hospital on the nicer side of town, and it offers a pretty good beer selection. Also, the people behind the counter didn’t make me fear for my life.
It was there that I found….
Beer #5: Schweinsbrau Weisse from Herrmannsdorfer.
Mmm mmmm. An excellent surprise. It came in a one-pint bottle with a nasty-looking pig in a field on the front – already a fan. But the beer forces you to react with it as soon as you pop off the cap. As soon as I did, foam came slowly flowing out. I had to put my mouth over it to keep it from going all over the place (and the gas tasted like sweet tarts).
As soon as I pour it, I can tell it’s different from other Hefeweizens I’ve had. It’s a dark orange amber with some cloudiness to it and ample head that sticks around. The smell is like cloves and fresh bananas, but it’s faint. The taste is also subdued, but it’s incredibly drinkable. If you get the head in there, the sweet, slightly bready beer literally floats on a cloud down your throat. It’s subtle and delicious. Shweinsbrau is creamy, with a bit of banana sweetness that stays consistent through the whole swallow. There might be hints of bitterness at the end, but not much.
Overall, I can’t tell if it’s the fact that it’s foreign, it’s delicious or I found it in Sterling, but I thought the beer was excellent. It’s the best Hefe I’ve had hands-down and the best beer I’ve had in a month at least. I’ll give it a 95. I’m torn on going higher, but I don’t think it’s complex enough to go any higher. They brew it according to the “Reinheitsgebot Purity Law,” which means that it has to fit certain guidelines, so I’ll give it that. But for being so limited, it definitely knows how to work with what it has.