From time to time I’m going to place some of my Instagram posts on the website. Sometimes those posts turn out to be fairly blog-worthy. In my opinion this is one of those times.
I hope you enjoy…
I’d been sitting on this beer for a while. Not because I didn’t want to drink it, more because I wanted to do it justice.
Smoke & Mirrors, an Imperial Smoked Ale by Coal Harbour Brewing.
Turn off your hazy juice receptors for a second and consider the smoked ale. Or perhaps, consider the context. My first sip of this was at the Great Canadian beer festival last summer. I got all of the smoke but none of the context, as it was maybe my 15th of 20 or so samples in a marathon of styles that day. And in that context it was hard to handle. My buddy Gord, a lifelong Lucky Lager lover (so take his shit with a grain of salt) remarked something along the lines of, “Tastes like I just had sex in the 80’s and smoked ALL the cigarettes in the deck!”
This was not the proper context and I knew it, so I waited to pass judgement.
Do you like smoked or peated whisky? Ya, me too. Put S&M in that context and you’re off to the Rauchbier races. I cracked open this can this weekend in my backyard. The sun had set and my body slowed: from production level output to appreciation level input. And so I sat there, tired but content, tulip glass of smoke in hand, considering the fate of worlds like an indifferent God.
Life was good.
Is this your everyday beer? Maybe not. Is this a great beer? Yes it is. If you’re into judgement by juries, particularly those whose palates are more refined than mine, consider the fact Smoke & Mirrors just took home the Silver Medal at the World Beer Cup. Yes, the WORLD beer cup.
Congratulations Coal Harbour, there’s no illusion in YOUR magic act, the Smoke & Mirrors is real.