Thursday, April 09, 2009

that was some good beer

There I was, lying prone in the chair, her left breast pushing towards the right side of my face as I stared at the ceiling. She was calling out numbers to the other girl as they poked the dental instrument into my gums. Soon she would scrape and polish my teeth before giving me the obligatory tooth brush and sending me out the door. I think everyone should have a Polish dental hygienist. Trying to translate their English is fun.

I am so glad I have my checkups. I think back to the days where I didn’t see a dentist because of the embarrassment of not having seen a dentist. It made no sense especially since I was paying for dental insurance at work. And even though I didn’t have any teeth that hurt it didn’t mean that my teeth were in bad shape. Since that day a couple years back I have made sure to brush and floss daily. I was close to having some serious oral surgery and not the good kind. My Polish friend has noticed the improvement which makes me happy.

The only downside of going to the dentist is that my appointment is rarely kept by them. I had to wait an extra 20 minutes yesterday. Because of that I had to shuffle some other plans around. When I walked out of the office and into the warm sun I knew there was only one place to go. Down to Roman’s Pub a block away. I had to get some of the Tyranena Cherry Porter before it was gone.

The beer itself was ok. I didn’t sense any cherry to it. If it was there it was way too subtle for me to pick up. I couldn’t say the same for the mezcal I drank. Didn’t see that coming, did you? Neither did I. After I had finished the cherry porter I scanned the board to decide what to drink next. It was then I saw the beer that is a legend in the state to the south of me. They had Goose Island Bourbon County Stout on tap. I had heard of the beer for the past couple of years but had never seen it for sale here in Milwaukee. I knew it was expensive and made in limited quantities so that meant I would have to seize the moment if I ever came face to face with this treasure.

I stared at the glass when it was set down in front of me. Picked it up and admired its deep, dark color. I took a whiff to see what kind of aroma it may have been giving off, then lifted it to my lips for the first drink. Wow! This is a beer I had never experienced before. The first thing I noticed was the bourbon was strong. Very strong. It ran all over your mouth announcing its arrival. That was followed by a smooth stout aftertaste. That was very different. In the past, the bourbon beers I have consumed have been the exact opposite. You taste the beer first-the stout or porter- and then catch an aftertaste of bourbon. Goose Island seemed to have created a bourbon with a beer flavor. I was so perplexed by how this was done that I had to call the Donkeypuncher to confirm that was how it was suppose to be. Now knowing the bar has some of the beer that was bottle in 2007 in the cooler, I know what I might have when I return.

Oh, did I mention this brew packs a wallop? Over 13% alcohol. Along with the mezcal and Tyranena I was feeling good when I left. Oh yeah, the mezcal. When I started drinking the Bourbon County Stout some guy walked in and sat by the owner. As he chatted him up I noticed what I thought was a bottle of tequila in front of the guy. I wondered if the owner lets his buddy bring his own bottle into the joint. It wasn’t until a minute later that the guy turned to me and asked if I wanted a shot. I looked back and asked what it was. The owner got some shot glasses and began to pour as the guy showed me the poster . Scorpion Mezcal. Sure enough there was a little scorpion in the bottle. They poured me a double and I put it back. It was smoother that tequila. Not bad. I can now take that off my list.

At the end of the day I managed to keep my tradition alive. Go to the dentist and finish with a belly full of beer.

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