Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Bottom Shelf Booze

I always appreciate Will Gordon's Drinking the Bottom Shelf column. Not only is it handy because, despite what I try to tell myself, I can't always afford the top shelf stuff, but he's also a wonderfully funny writer. It seriously brightens up my day to see his take on things like Blue Moon Winter Abbey Ale. "We can admit that regular Blue Moon doesn't suck. Neither does the Winter Abbey Ale, but it comes close." So it was with joy I saw he had commented on my favorite bottom shelf brew, Grain Belt.

I will be very pleasantly surprised if I come across a finer CARL [Cheap American Regional Lager] than this Minnesotan beauty. It doesn't smell like much of anything, which is a good quality in a cheap yellow beer, but it sits pretty thick on the tongue for its kind. What really sets Grain Belt apart is its kinky and unique caramel cream flavor. I can totally see Prince pouring this on his loved ones. I'm going to Minnesota.
I have fond memories of living with Steve back in my graduate school days. It was only a few months, but somehow it felt longer. At one point, he went on a road trip to Missoula, and he came back with a case of Grain Belt. It's not available in Indiana, or anywhere else I've lived, so I've not had it since. But it had a unique flavor like nothing else I'd ever had. Somehow, it tasted gritty. The texture wasn't actually gritty, it was fully liquid, but somehow it tasted like it should be gritty. (For some reason, my wife doesn't think this is a recommendation.) So next time I'm in Minnesota, I'm definitely making mine a Grain Belt.

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