After 3 failed delivery attempts (because I refuse to get up before 10am on my days off), my package from Wild Beer Co. arrived.
I had been sent a selection of their sour beers as I made an arse of myself because I didn’t think that the beer I bought was supposed to be sour. They then proceeded to school me on the nuances of beer in, quite possibly, the politest way I have ever been schooled.
They also sent me a lengthy and profoundly interesting account on how the beer I bought was brewed. From start to finish. I learned something I had no need of knowing, yet I felt better with that knowledge.
I would like to preface this series of posts with a disclaimer. I am not a beer sommelier. I have only brewed my own beer twice and the first time, I think I nearly killed someone. I have, however, enjoyed beer for a long time. I enjoy the range of tastes and styles. I am not a beer expert, I would probably label myself as an “enthusiastic hobbyist”.
I have a rough understanding of the terminology behind beers but I would definitely fail a blind taste test. So don’t expect talk of hops and yeasts, unless I’m directly quoting from the bottle. But do expect my usual brand of pop culture references, obscure analogies which weirdly work and a whole load of enthusiasm.
So, the box has arrived…
I opened the box like I had found the ark of the covenant. This box was my Qumran and inside were the beer equivalent of the Dead Sea Scrolls. I swear that a light emitted from the box as I opened it and I felt a small tear drop onto the cardboard. I really should not have religious experiences over boxes of beer.
Inside there were 6 bottles and an elegant little card with the instructions to Drink Wildly Different.
Dark brown bottles with cleanly lined logos and the occasional splash of colour. One had even had a wax cap which had begun to drip down the bottle, like a 100 year old bottle of wine found in a long-forgotten cellar. I knew I had something special in front of me.
When I say that there were 6 bottles. There were 6 individual beers. Each with a completely different flavour and personality, each deserving of their own time to shine.
The blurb on the back of each beer wasn’t merely a passing description of what was in the bottle. No, these were the stories that were held underneath every cap. The people at Wild Beer Co. don’t just want people to buy their beer (although, I’m sure they do want you to do that). They want you to understand the heart and soul that goes into them. They provide serving suggestions (which reminds me, I need to buy a rich cheddar). They offer a suggestion of the best way to enjoy them. One said to drink it out of a champagne flute and it finally justified the fact that I own champagne flutes.
I studied every bottle and mentally prepared myself. What I was going to watch, what I was going to eat, which day I would drink which beer. I did not enter into this bargain lightly. And when you decide to do the same, neither should you.
Unfortunately, all of this happened on a Tuesday. That bloody delivery. I was beside myself with giddiness. I wanted to pour them into a jug and drink them all at once. No, that would have been a waste.
I even considered making a night of them all. One incredible night of beer after beer. The problem with that is the fact that the beers I enjoyed at the latter end of the evening wouldn’t be as sharp and clear in my memory as those at the beginning (because, you know, alcohol). I would have just ended up drinking the last couple instead of really savouring them.
Have you ever listened to a song and realised that you hadn’t been listening halfway through? You can always just skip back and relisten but it’s not the same. In your mind, you know that you didn’t show it due care and attention. And you can’t exactly redo a beer, can you?
With that in mind, I am going to sit and savour each of these beers. One per night so that neither one has to try and outshine the other.
I may be taking this a bit too seriously. But there is no going back.
As I drink each beer, you will follow me on the journey from start to finish. If I cook something, I will post the recipe. All of this will have to be drawn over the course of the week but let me assure you, if you buy these beers now, you will understand why it mustn’t be rushed.
It’s going to be quite the journey, I think you’re going to need a beer along the way…
PS: Just to clarify, I wasn’t paid for this post. Wild Beer Co. sent me these beers because I’m an idiot so I thought I would blog about them.