Monster, The Big Lebowski, and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Easily 3 of the greatest movies ever made, and I've been lucky enough to watch all of them in the last week.

Monster - What a freaking fantastic movie. It takes a truly special film to accomplish what this one does - it makes the unthinkable seem absolutely and 100% real. Somehow, in some magical way, you end up feeling sorry for and, if your a puss-bag like me, crying (just a little I swear) for a mass murdering lesbian whore. Her speech at the end is just heart wrenching. And how about Charlize Theron's performance? Holy God! One of the best performances of our time.

The Big Lebowski - It had been a while since I actually sat down and watched this movie. How fucking hilarious is this? This is one of the funniest movies I've ever seen! Jeff Bridges absolutely murders it, no questions asked, and John Goodman and Steve Buscemi are both stellar as well. Every time I see this film I laugh even harder. This is one of the few comedies from the 90's that has actually stood the test of time for me.

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind - Hands down one of the most clever and unique movies I've ever seen, with two phenomenal performances from Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet. This movie was produced with no special effects. Everything you see is just great camera work and directing. Such cool shots, interesting scenes, and mind numbing acting, not to mention a great story, make this one of my favorite dramas of all time. Every time I watch it, I catch about 20 things I'd never seen before. A masterpiece.


Holy Sheet!

Just when I think I'm getting good....

I thought this beer was good fresh, but entirely too hot. I thought it was just young. I thought a year would help it out. I thought wrong. Still drinkable after 13 months in the cellar, but still a mess. I'm all about supporting Clipper City - I think the Heavy Seas line is an often overlooked and underrated batch of brews - but it's time for them to step their game up to the next level. They obviously have the potential and skill to make great beer, but the next step is to conform to the ever changing market. Once this craft beer growth period dies down (it's going to, I swear it), brews like Oxford Raspberry, Balto-MarzHon, and McHenry are not going to cut it. They need more Loose Cannons, more Hang Tens, and more Red Sky at Nights. This is one of those many breweries that is on the verge of becoming a smash, but needs that extra something to get them there. I wish them well.



I was in at Commonplace for a while today and TJ hooked it up. I got to try 2 different espressos, and it was really cool to compare and contrast them. I never knew espresso could be so damn flavorful. It was like an explosion of taste in my mouth! Delicious. Mad props to TJ though, for real. After this, and the Celebes for the stout, I think I may owe him my left nut.

Muckney Brewing Batch XI Dark IPA

Justin & Dave (aka Muckney Brewing) brewed this bad boy. For being a hop hater, I've done nothing but praise hoppy beers on this blog. This one's no different. I love it. Fantastic color with a rich, froth beige head. Hoppy as all get out, but a wonderful strong roasty character to balance it all out. Freaking delicious guys. These two cats continue to blow my socks off. I really enjoyed the Dark & Mysterious Cinnamon Porter, surprisingly enough. You two just keep stepping it up. Can't wait to try the Red and, even more so, the RIS.

Sorry I missed the tasting tonight. I'm mostly apologizing to my taste buds. To be perfectly, 100% honest, I just wanted to spend a relaxing evening at home with Autumn. And I did. And it was just what I needed.


Eli's Steam & Imperial Amber

I cracked a few of Eli's homebrews this evening, and figured I'd give them a run down, as well as bash American styles for a while. These are 2 styles I normally don't enjoy, but both of Eli's were excellent, especially the Imperial Amber.

Steam - Spicy, piney nose with a hint of rubber. Very full mouthfeel, well carbonated. Earthy and bready malt notes with a nice smack of hop bitterness in the finish. Well done Eli, and to be honest it's the first Steam I've ever liked. I guess I just don't understand the style. Lager yeast at ale temperatures sounds fine and dandy, but it winds up tasting like nothing special. I think part of this has to do with my hatred of getting drunk. Sessionable styles of beer just don't appeal to me as much as they used to. I generally drink 2 beers at a time before my stomach starts getting all pissy, so I want those 2 to pack a punch. Now I gotta emphasize - I'm ranting about the style. I actually really liked Eli's.

Imperial Amber - Pours a beautiful, hazy burgundy with a strong beige head. This one has an awesome smell. Caramel and brown sugar immediately, followed by a fantastic spicy, citric, peppery and piney hop aroma. The flavor is just as on point as the smell. Super hoppy, but with underlying sticky sweet malts throughout, and a strong alcohol presence that is a welcome finish. Eli - I fucking love it. Call it an American Strong Ale and you've won Febtoberfest. Now let me bitch real quick. Imperial Amber. What I like about this style - Imperial. What I don't like - Amber. Regular amber beers just seem so boring to me anymore. I'll take this over any amber, any day of the week, no questions asked.

Well, Eli, I think it's safe to say you've moved for beyond the days of the EAssB. We'll just pretend that beer never happened. Killer job.

Ok I Have No Freaking Clue What a Blog Is

So, yeah, I'm kinda lost right now. Who are you people? What's a blog, anyways? I'm just gonna try this shit out, and I'll probably give up in roughly 2 weeks. Best case scenario, this will be a place for me to rant and rave beer and food and music and other things I give a crap about. But something tells me laziness will win.. again.

First order of business - I don't hate hops. I just hate when that's all you can taste in a beer. I figured the title "Confessions of a Hop Hater" would draw people in. In fact I'm drinking a Nugget Nectar right now, and I'm enjoying it. It's great! The more I drink this beer, the more I like it. Strong citrus and floral notes, but enough of a spicy, caramel malt and alcoholic heat to back it up. I think it was released a little too early, because right now it's drinking better than ever. Still not as good as that first batch of bottles though.. They still haunt my dreams.

Secondly - Charon Don. Listen to him. He's good. My friend Joe turned me on to him. I think he beats Wiz's skills by a long shot.

Third - I brewed tonight. Well first off, I racked my plain old American stout to secondary, and added 1 quart of coffee from a cold toddy, made out of a pound of Commonplace Celebes (thank you TJ). I got the inspiration from Nate's Commonplace Coffee Porter, which was, hands-down, the best coffee beer I've ever had. After that, I brewed a Tripel, which was loosely based on a St. Feuillien Tripel clone. Juniper berries, sweet orange peel, coriander seeds, and grains of paradise. Hell yeah! I forgot to add this last night - O.G. was 1.096. Holy shit, huh?

Fourth - Rochefort 8. My boy Karel shared a bottle of this with me tonight. It's been probably 4 years since I've had this beer, and I forgot something. It's the fucking bomb.

And finally - What the fuck am I doing? Has it come to this? BLOGGING? My god.. I never thought I'd see the day. First myspace, then facebook, now this nonsense. At this rate, I'll be blowing dudes for cash in less than 2 years. Eh - it is what it is, right?