Category Archives: Style: English Barleywine

Ridgeway Crimanally Bad Elf

While the Giant Slept

While the Giant Slept

Merry Christmas LIBA readers! I hope you all had a wonderful day today. The last week has been filled with holiday celebrations and all of them have been great for me. Last night we went to a Christmas party with my father-in-law’s extended family. We had a great time catching up, playing Cards Against Humanity and we even made out like bandits at the Yankee Swap. Today we spent the afternoon with my mother-in-law’s extended family, eating good food and scoring more great Yankee Swap goodies. The best gift I got in the past week was a print titled “While the Giant Slept”, which is pictured above. The lithograph pictures Pearl Harbor seconds before the first bomb dropped…before the world changed forever. My wife got me a signed, numbered artist’s proof of the print. I have one of 100 copies that exist. Once I get it framed, I’ll share a picture.

Tonight I’m relaxing, watching Game of Thrones and drinking Ridgeway Crimanally Bad Elf. This English barleywine was another gift from my mother. And while I’ve tried beers like bad elf and insanely bad elf, I don’t believe I’ve ever had this criminal version.

It pours a straightforward amber color with minimal head. It has a medicinal, alcohol aroma, which is not particularly pleasing. Dark fruit and heavy malts with brown sugar flavors dominate. The brew is incredibly sweet and quite boozy. It’s 10.5% ABV is barely masked, if at all. As the beer warms, even slightly, the booziness increases. The intense sweetness isn’t jiving with me right now, so I’m not particularly enjoying it. Perhaps in a smaller quantity in a different setting, I would have enjoyed this more…

-Lost

Ridgeway Crimanally Bad Elf

Hoppin’ Frog Sweet Evil and Southern Tier Unearthly

Tonight’s post is a recap of the beer brainstorm Silvio and I did last night while watching the mid-season finale of The Walking Dead. We’ve done this every time the show has had a finale and the tradition continues. We always pick a zombie-ish theme beer. We’re running out of good options, but we managed to stay close to the theme with Southern Tier Unearthly and Hoppin’ Frog Sweet Evil.

WARNING: THIS POST CONTAINS SIGNIFICANT WALKING DEAD SPOILERS!!!!

Southern Tier Unearthly

Silvio: Initial thoughts?
Lost: Mine is hoppin’ Frog Sweet Evil Belgian Style Barley Wine. 8.8% ABV. 22oz.
Silvio: Mine is Southern Tier Unearthly IPA. It’s an oak-aged imperial 9.5% ABV. 22oz.
Lost: Whooowhee! We’re both gonna have fun with these. :)
Silvio: You can always tell it’s strong when they tell you to put it in a tulip glass

Silvio: This episode is gonna be crazy. Let’s do predictions.
Lost: Rick and team storms the town. They have to kill some peeps, but they get in easy because the town’s security guards have gone to the prison at the same time. They take the prison, and take everyone there (including Carl) prisoner.
Silvio: I think Rick’s attack happens before the team leaves. They kill lots of the town security. The prisoner with them dies. There’s a moral crisis both with the brothers and the blonde chick. They escape with the prisoners as part of a negotiated withdrawal.
Lost: Yeah, the prisoner is like the unknown actor that always accompanied Captin Kirk.

Episode begins…

Silvio: Here we go!
Silvio: Starting off with a flashback?
Lost: Seems like it
Silvio: Oh snap, is that the group’s prison?

Hoppin' Frog Sweet Evil

First commercial

Silvio: Ok, want to do some beer thoughts?
Lost: Yeah. Go for it.
Silvio: Okay, mine pours out kind of cloudy, a dark amber color. Aroma is a nice sweet malt smell, with some fruity hints.
Lost: Mine pours a dark reddish amber. Super sweet, dark fruit smells. Limited head.

“Governor” is hanging out with his aquarium heads and his zombie daughter…

Silvio: OK zombies again.
Lost: How much does Andrea tick you off?
Silvio: She just doesn’t know any better
Silvio: She’ll be the one who negotiates a way out for rick, i bet.
Silvio: The governor is a dick. super creepy.
Lost: He’s so demented…
Silvio: All those disembodied heads in the aquariums

Scene cuts to Glenn and Maggie still locked up. Glenn rips off the zombie’s arm, pulls out bones to use as knives.

Lost: How much of a bad-ass did Glen turn into?
Silvio: When he killed that walker while strapped to the chair. Probably the baddest kill yet.
Silvio: WTF is glen doing?
Lost: ROFL….Bone weapons?
Silvio: That is gruesome.
Lost: The special effects on this show are awesome.

Southern Tier Unearthly

Scene cut, random dude walks into the shed that Rick and company are hiding in, gets a rifle-butt to the head.

Silvio: This guy is dead as hell.
Lost: OUCH! Nighty-nights!!

Scene cuts back to the prison. The short prisoner is hitting on the teenage girl (Beth). Carol stops him. He thinks Carol is a lesbian. Hilarity ensues.

Silvio: This guy is such a perv
Lost: LOL. He’s prob a sex offender. “You’re a lesbian….”
Silvio: “You’ve got…the short hair”. “You’re not a lesbian? My, my, this is interesting”.

Scene cut. Back to Glenn and Maggie. They break out, stab a dude in the neck with the bones. NASTY!

Silvio: Oh shit, here it goes!
Lost: UGH! Neck stabbed.
Silvio: This music is so good.

Southern Tier Unearthly

Second commercial…

Silvio: There’s serious taste here. Tons of sweetness on the front, but even more hops through the middle. I get pine notes, some citrus, and a full sweet aftertaste that lingers around.
Lost: My brew is VERY malty. VERY sweet. Dark fruits galore. Figs, plums, more. Overpowering sweetness.
Silvio: This is GREAT beer. Mine’s really balanced. Perfect mix of sweetness and hops
Lost: I’m jealous! :)
Lost: There’s nothing like a well-balanced imperial IPA
Lost: Just realized this is a Belgian, and I’m getting very little spice. Sweetness and fruit is blocking anything else from coming through.

Back to the zombies! Cut to Rick and team pulling Glenn and Maggie out.

Silvio: They’re totally gonna rescue them at the last minute. Yes! Amaze-pants!
Silvio: Feel like they’re going to need to shoot their way out.
Lost: Michonne is running off to kill the governor

Outside in the courtyard, Rick starts seeing Shane.

Silvio: Rick is trippin. And there goes the prisoner.
Lost: Yup. He’s slowly losing it. In. Tense.
Silvio: Daryl’s gonna get hit.
Lost: Nope…he’s gonna stay on purpose. Rock and a hard place. He knows his brother is there.

Hoppin' Frog Sweet Evil

Third commercial…

Silvio: It’s pretty thick. Especially as it warms.
Lost: That’s what she said
Silvio: Ha
Lost: Sorry. 12 year old humor.
Silvio: The hops mellow the longer its in the glass. But this is still a crazy good beer. One of the best I’ve had in a long time.
Lost: My (beer) is super thick. Syrupy.
Lost: And I’m at the other end of the spectrum, Too sweet to finish more than a third of it on my own. Drain-beer. *sadpanda*
Silvio: That’s a bummr
Lost: Yeah. I think it was $12 too Epic fail. How much was the Unearthly?
Silvio: $7.99 i think.

Cut back to the prison. Carl and others hear human screams from other parts of the prison.

Silvio: Uh oh. Here’s the intro ramifications.
Lost: About to gain about 3-4 new crew members

Cut to Michonne in the governor’s house. First the daughter gets Michonne’s blade, next the governor’s eye is gouged out.

Silvio: Dude Michonne is a samurai. Gonna kill the Gv’s daughter.
Lost: Rut ro. YUP!. And he is going to be piiiiissssed.
Silvio: Oh shit!!
Lost: This is gonna be nasty.
Silvio: This may be the craziest fight scene I’ve ever watched. Oh SHIT!!! WHOA!!!
Lost: Guvna’s gonna need an eye patch.
Silvio: This guy has a piece of glass in his eye!
Lost: So nasty! LOL
Silvio: Sometimes when I’m watching this show, all I can say is “what the shit”

Hoppin' Frog Sweet Evil

Govenor recovers a bit, is speaking to the town.

Silvio: The gov is gonna attack the prison hard core.
Lost: Yup. He. is. pissed.
Silvio: He’s unhinged now.
Silvio: This is such an allegory on human nature in general. Two secure camps, need to fight each other even though everyone is against them

Govenor sells out Merle
Silvio: WHOA! Peace Merle!
Lost: His bro is gonna save him.
Silvio: Nope, here’s his brother. Both gonna die.
Lost: Bummer
Silvio: Now Andrea knows.
Lost: And it ends like that
Lost: Crazy episode, as expected.
Silvio: I feel like the show has fallen to a new depth. Like the decension of humanity in the face of apocalypse.
Lost: This story doesn’t have a happy ending.
Silvio: Think one needs to redefine “happy”.

Lost: Thanks for doing the brainstorm with me tonight. A great time.
Silvio: It’s become a nice tradition. :)
Lost: Indeed! I gotta bounce. Coughing my brains out. Need to hit the hay.
Silvio: Yeah man, see you around.
Lost: Latta bro.

Southern Tier Unearthly