Beer: King’s Kolsch
Brewer: Blue Hills Brewery
Source: 22 oz bottle
Rating: ** (6.6 of 10)
Comments: This mysterious beer (can’t find any evidence of it on the ‘net) is golden and bubbly with a thick head. True to its style, I find it has a musty aroma with a real earthy flavor with hints of chocolate. The aftertaste is a bit bitter but it’s well-balanced. Another good brew from some Boston-area beermakers.
For an alternate take here’s a review from the Boston Globe.
Beer: Our Turn, Your Turn
Brewer: Pretty Things / Yeastie Boys collaboration
Source: 22 oz bottle
Rating: *** (7.5 of 10)
Comments: Our Turn, Your Turn and as the world turns, a collaboration of the Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project of Somerville, MA and the Yeastie Boys of New Zealand. The beer is a hazy, straw color with lots of fizz. Aromas and flavors seem to be heavily influenced by the Linden flower, a type of tea that gives the beer strong earthy and floral accents. The hoppiness packs a wallop, and I generally don’t like the bitterness of hoppy beers, but this one is good enough to make an exception. All in all, an imaginative and exceptional beer.
Beer: Dale’s Pale Ale
Brewer: Oskar Blues Grill & Brewery
Rating: ** (6.7 of 10)
Comments: Here’s a beer I’ve been avoiding because it comes in can yet is really expensive. I found a place serving it on-tap and gave it a try. The beer has a nice malt/hops balance and leaves good lacing on the glass. I’m not sure if I’ll get it in a can, but it’s nice to know that a decent beer can come in aluminum.
Beer: Smuttynose Pumpkin Ale
Brewer: Smuttynose Brewing Co.
Source: 12 oz. bottle
Rating: *** (7.1 of 10)
Comments: This beer has a thick, respectable head and a cloudy, pumpkin orange color. The spices are apparent in the aroma but there’s also an acidic scent there too. The pumpkin flavor is there but also more of a bitter, hoppy taste as well. It seemed to get a bit more weak and watery as I swirled it across my tongue. All-in-all a good pumpkin ale and a great way to start October.
Related posts: Smuttynose Shoals Pale Ale
Beer: Bailey’s Blonde Ale
Brewer: Cisco Brewers
Source: 12 fl. oz. bottle
Rating: ** (6.3 of 10)
Look – Cloudy, golden, carbonated, thin head
Aroma – Musty, earthy, floral
Taste – good balance of malts and hops, bitter aftertaste
2nd look – no head, no lace, still bubbly
Overall – a tasty, complex ale that leaves me with a good buzz.
**** Once in a Lifetime (2006)
They say Americans don’t like soccer and that it will never be as popular here as it is in the rest of the world. Yet I remember growing up in a time and place where not only did I play youth soccer but cheered for a successful American soccer team that played before sell-out crowds in an American Football stadium. This documentary proves that I wasn’t imagining things in my childhood. The New York Cosmos were real, they were good, and they were big.
All the figures involved in making the Cosmos – the players and the executives – are all there with the exception of the late Steve Ross and Pele (who wanted too much money to be interviewed). Still it’s a rollicking film with conflicting opinions showing that tempestuous feelings among the Cosmos haven’t faded with time. It’s an amazing story of how a team basically made of semi-pros playing at a small college football stadium grew into one of the first international all-star teams playing to a full house in the Meadowlands. And more amazing that some of those semi-pros stuck around long enough for the surreal experience of playing with Pele.
Ross invested a lot of his Warner Communications money into bringing stars like Pele and Giorgio Chinalgia to the USA as well as making the Cosmos an attraction with cheerleaders, an exploding scoreboard, and Bugs Bunny as a mascot. The free-spending ways also contributed to the demise of the NASL as other teams could not keep up, not to mention that the NASL expanded to way too many franchises.
The documentary uses graphics, music, and editing techniques that give it a 70’s vibe. I really enjoyed it and it made me very nostalgic for the golden age of the NASL and the 70’s in New York. Highly recommended for soccer fans or anyone interested in an unlikely American success story.
Author: Alain De Botton
Title: The Art of Travel
Publication Info: Recorded Books, LLC (2002), Audio CD
Previously Read by Same Author: The Architecture of Happiness
This book reflects on travel focusing on the little things such as the novelty of the commonplace in a new place, disorientation, the boredom of travel, and even ponders whether travel for pleasure is even a necessity. Along the way he shows travel through the eyes of various artists: Van Gogh, Wordsworth, Flauber, Von Humboldt and others. He even details how artists create the vision we have of the destinations we wish to visit. This is all written in the intellectual vein of someone who attends a literary salon, so if that’s not your thing, you won’t like this book. I found it brain-teasingly good, but I think that de Botton is meant to be read more than heard so I don’t recommend the audiobook.