TWIB – Father-in-laws, Cognac and Lawnmower IPAs

This Week in Beer (TWIB) is a feature where I’ll highlight some craft beers I had during this past week mixed with some related (and unrelated) thoughts. Yes, it’s a play on the name of the show This Week in Baseball which I grew up on and loved.

Oh, the Fourth of July. One of my favorite holidays. A day of cookouts, drinking outdoors and fireworks. I was able to do all three while teaching my father-in-law about craft beer.

Hardywood does it again

My father-in-law is not into beer. He’ll drink a Heineken or Miller Lite every once in a while. He hasn’t been exposed to much of the craft beer world. I blew his mind with Hardywood’s Bourbon Cru.

We shared a 750ML bottle. This beer is an Abbey-style Quadrupel and is 10.2% ABV, 18 IBUs and only available in the spring from the Richmond brewery. It has a rich, fruity-vanilla flavor. The 10.2% ABV is not noticeable and it goes down very smooth. What my father-in-law enjoyed most was that it wasn’t hoppy and reminded him a little of Cognac. I will be seeing him again this weekend. Do you have any suggestions for beers to pickup for him to try?

Cognac puts hair on your chest

Since he drank my drink of choice on Thursday, I was obligated to drink his drink of choice on Friday. We drank Martell Cordon Bleu, which is a $130 bottle of cognac. Usually we drink a lower-grade cognac and I cut it with Perrier mineral water but since this was a special bottle I had to drink it straight.

Drinking liquor isn’t really my “thing” and drinking it straight is definitely out of my comfort zone. However, this cognac was so good that I was able to easily drink my fair share of the bottle before having to cut it.

If you want to branch out and try a cognac, I recommend this one. Straight-up, on the rocks.

“Like heavily-hopped water”

I’ve been hearing about Founders All Day IPA for sometime now. Bryan told me “as great a lawnmower session IPA you could ask for. Super light. Like heavily-hopped water.” Man was he right on. At 4.7% I don’t qualify it as an all-day session beer, at least for me. I could drink it all day based on flavor alone though.

I remember coming across the argument that since it’s less alcohol it should be cheaper. I picked up a six-pack at Wegmans for $10.99. I don’t think that’s too outrageous of a price. And why are you drinking the beer? For the alcohol? For the taste? A combination? I think it’s more of a combination for most and the flavor of this beer makes up for the lack of alcohol.

Goal Setting – Cicerone Certified Beer Server Exam

The Cicerone Certified Beer Server Exam is the first step into becoming a Cicerone (similar to a Sommelier with wine). It’s a 60-question multiple choice test that’s offered online through the Cicerone website. The knowledge you need to know for the test won’t just make you a better beer server; it’ll make you a better beer ambassador. If I can be a better beer ambassador for my friends, family and acquaintances maybe I can convert just more one Macro drinker.

I’ve decided to start studying to take the test. I aim to take it in early September. Readers – hold my feet to the fire on this and don’t let me back out!

I’d like to thank Glass Half Full DC, the taproom located inside Alamo Drafthouse, for providing me with loads of study material. I owe you a round.

Last week’s question:

If you could produce a beer-related TV show, what would it’s title and premise be?

Ryan had a great idea:

“I would love to see maybe a six episode mini-series, and each episode could highlight a specific continent’s beer. They could be around 2 hours each, and could start with history and then move on to the present.”

This week’s question:

What’s your favorite beer for the beach?

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