Thursday, April 30, 2009


CONFESSION: i'm not a big guinness fan. well, i'm not a fan of their regular irish stout, particularly the kind that sells on tap at every dedgum bar and grill from here to timbuktu. i don't like the stuff. guinness on tap tastes like a good stout that got watered down. i am, however, quite a big fan of the guinness extra stout, the one that sells without the little nitrogen widget, but that's a different post. 

so the story goes that tonight i'm waltzing around the liquor store with two smokin' black women - my wife and our dear friend leida, in from saint louis for latonya's birfday - and all the white dudes in the store are craning their necks and saying, "damn! what kinda karma is that dude pulling to be with them?" and leida's buying lambic. and latonya's buying sweet tea flavored vodka. and i found sixers of new belgium's mighty arrow on for $5 so i nearly pee myself. 

then i found a bottle of this guinness 250th anniversary stout. poured in a small taster glass, i'm seeing a stout that is phenomenally darker in appearance than the regular guinness. with carbonation decreased (by the lack of a widget), the blackness sits heavy in the glass, allowing a small purplish cola-tinted ring of light at the bottom and near the top of the glass. the aroma tells of deeply roasted malts with small hints of coffee. nothing sweet rears in the aroma - no anise or caramel, no cocoa or even raisin: just small coffee notes and a heavy malt burn. smells more like bread than beverage. the aroma does not rightly prepare the palate for the depth of flavor. again, nothing spectacular or specific stands out in the palate or the mouthfeel, just the roast of dark barley and slightly smokey grains. that's all. this is a good stout if you like the flavor of ashes. honestly, after developing a passion for the russian imperial stout, what with all her complexities of warring sweets and stringencies, this guinness 250th anniversary pales in comparison to the new possibilities i know of stouts. 

overall verdict: guinness 250, while way better than guinness draught, doesn't hold a candle to guinness extra stout or, especially, american craft stouts. the typical argument goes that, since the irish invented stouts, guinness is the consummate stout. well, fine then. drink all the guinness you want, me lad. but, as for the me and my palate, i will bask in the dark and sinister russky imperial stouts of america

and also dreamy black women. 


  1. here, here, for black women.
    my wife is white, but that doesn't matter because she got sass.

    As for Guiness, i'm with you my small and crafty animal ball. My old Pal Tod Buckner Brock, also a hamster, fell into the toilet at 3 AM once thinking that it was Guiness. It turned out to be toilet water and he would have drowned if i hadn't woke up and heard splashing--true story.

    After that, he and i both lost our taste for the Guiness and are amused by the prevalence or this nothing-to-boast-about burnt water at every drinking hole. oh well, as long as there are other options, right?

  2. In my adolescent phase as a beer drinker (when I didn't know anything but thought I did - have I left this phase?) I thought Guinness was IT. Black, thick, intimidating. I thought I stood out because MY beer was BLACK. Those around me didn't like it because it was too "strong". So I drank it.

    My confession: I like it. I can knock back 3 in 90 seconds with its smooth texture (to me). It's dessert to me. It's also good in chili and in marinades. However, if I'm at a bar and a PBR is going for the same price as a Guinness...I would have to think about it.

    I don't order it or buy it anymore because I've moved onto bigger and better beers.

    Guinness at watering holes - isn't this a new thing? I've noticed that more and more establishments are serving it. Maybe everybody else is going through the same phase I went through thinking it is a tough beer.

  3. yes'r. i hope my post did not sound like a diss on guinness. wasn't intended. i drank the stuff vigorously and enthusiastically for years. sought it out and praised it publically. guinness is as much an unavoidable piece of my beer-ography as christian metal owned a phase of my music-testimony. and i shall never begrudge either for who they have crafted in the hamster.

    still, i do not want to drink guinness today anymore than i want to blast bride's "psychodelic super jesus" on my drive home. when i was a child, i spoke as a child, i rocked as a child, i drank as a child; but now i'm a man, and sometimes a dude, and i have put childish ways behind me.

    yes'r given the option between guinness and miller lite, i'd take the lager every time.

  4. a special note about miller lite:
    last night i had a miller lite (free) and right after it i had a bud light (1 dollar). the aftertaste from the combined beers was as if i had just smoked a cigarette.

    so, i drank 2 more bud light's to get the taste to go away.

  5. baker - i do enjoy me a nice cold budweiser ever once in a good while, especially on a hotter than hot day when the bud is so cold ice chips float at the top of the glass. that's good stuff.

    but i cannot, as a representative of the Kingdom of God and the Creator of our palates, endorse bud light. it's bad river water. sorry to say so.

    miller lite is a personal favorite of mine. choose it willingly and delightfully.

  6. "to hell with the guiness..." sing it stryper style! go buy an anderson valley oatmeal stout and sing with the angels.

  7. ha. i'm just the opposite. Miller lite makes me want to gag, and bud light tasted like a special reserve craft beer after having the miller. weird. not saying bud is good, i wasn't saying that. in comparison though, i would definitely chose the bud.