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By Kevin Patterson and Tres Watson
Let’s face it guys … if you have a child, then your bachelor-like days of planning each day for maximum enjoyment are long gone. Now daycare, school schedules, meal planning, homework, recital practice-this and soccer game-that cut into your all-important do-nothing plans. There’s just not a whole lot of bean bag sittin’, Doritos eatin’, Jerry Springer watchin’ going on nowadays, except …
… on Father’s Day!
To celebrate all that it means to be Dad, you probably look forward to starting the day with a thoughtful breakfast that ignores all the health advice that was given by your doctor, followed by the quirky charm of a handmade card from a toddler or a semi-sincere grumble from a teenager who actually pretends she like you today. But an evening of fine companionship with a fishing pole, or a remote control, or a Hooter’s server should warm the soul with the kind of gratification that only comes around once each year. And it’s all done best with a well-crafted, frosted malty beverage in hand.
Summer on the brink and a rare moment to daydream might conjure a wish that you were on a Jamaican or Mexican beach with a can-o-suds in hand. Those fiery dishes of jerk seasonings and peppered tacos deserve a fresh and worthwhile beer to complement.
But you’re not on those beaches, you’re thinking about rising from the bean bag and firing up the grill. The good news is that you are not relegated to the fizzy stuff that you add a lime to simply to give it flavor; you have better beer options right herein the Bluegrass.
Try a fully malted yet highly refreshing Joe’s Pilsner by Avery Brewing Co., only available in a 12-ounce can. It has enough body and herbal hop bitterness to stand up to the earthy taste of most Mexican dishes and sweet enough to balance the spices. Light enough in alcohol, you can have more than one if it’s what it takes. Oh darn!
Venturing into the deepest recesses of the “Dad” mind might require a darker ale to match. With all the powerfully complex thoughts that lurk in there and rarely have opportunity to manifest in reality, may we suggest the moderately roasty Old Leghumper by Thirsty Dog Brewing Co. Bursting with flavors that resemble chocolate, toffee and nutty coffees, these flavors in the beer link up nicely with similar flavors in porterhouse steak and have just enough hop bitterness to cut through the fat. Dry enough to cleanse the palate in preparation for the next bite, the beer does more than cause your significant other’s eyes to roll with a glimpse of the cheeky label. Who are we kidding, a short skirt and a juicy steak is about as deep as those thoughts get.
But maybe an evening out to your favorite sporty watering hole with buds and suds is more your style. And here, if it doesn’t fit into a deep fryer then it’s not on the menu. You’ll find that a solidly hopped American IPA can handle anything on the plate. Pair those spicy chicken wings with Boulder Brewing Co.’s Mojo Risin’- an imperial version with the malt sweetness to bring out the flavors of the poultry while complementing with spicy hops. The alcohol of 10-plus percent strips the fat from the palate in preparation for that next drummie. This beer also works with pizzas topped with pepperoni and Italian sausage in case you venture out to one of those “classy joints”.
Our confidence is sky-high as we know we can get away with almost anything today. Everyone laughs at our corny jokes, we’re selfish with our time, and we receive a gift or two simply because we were capable of producing offspring at least once in our life. OK, maybe we’re even a bit cocky.
But before you put that big ‘ole head on that itty-bitty pillow, we’ll need to get our bearings straight before the backlash tomorrow. Stone Brewing Company has devised a beer for such occasion: Arrogant Bastard Ale. Absurd amount of sweet and salty malt flavors balance to perfection against the biting bitterness of citrusy hops, the beer’s 7 percent alcohol seems awash underneath the embattled taste that’s exploding on the palate. Extreme, check! Abrasive, check! Is the beer getting the better of you, (reluctant) check! The intimidating ale has a way of putting you in your place with a limerick on the bottle that decries “You’re not worthy.” Now grab your teddy bear and resume the fetal position, work comes early pal.
It’s then that your privileges are in the rear-view mirror and the repetition of life resumes. Three hundred and sixty-four sunsets seem like a long time unitl we do it over again. But as Dad, you are Superman to someone everyday. And that’s worthy of a craft beer for any day of the year. We wish you a very Happy Father’s Day, every day!
Kevin Patterson is the resident beer guide and manager at the Beer Trappe on Euclid Avenue. He is an Army veteran and formerly worked in the architecture profession before taking his love of craft beer into the occupation ranks. Patterson also is a nationally ranked Beer Judge Certification Program beer judge and a Cicerone Certified Beer Server (Cicerones are to beer what sommeliers are to wine.) Throughout the course of his career, he has reviewed 2,800 different beers, judged in more than 100 competitions and festivals, and co-written many articles on the beer culture. He has lived in Lexington for 17 years.
Tres Watson, a graduate of Centre College, is a senior account representative at Peritus, a public relations firm. Before moving to Lexington, he created and directed the 2004 Border Beer Bust in Augusta, Ga., which featured nearly 200 beers and drew 5,000 attendees over two days. Watson is an avid beer drinker and a particular fan of IPAs. He and his wife, Laura, live in Lexington, are members of the Lexington Beer Aficionados, and can frequently be found at Pazzo’s or the Beer Trappe.