Sometimes we go out looking for it. Sometimes it just falls in our laps. Sometimes it's a surprise we didn't even know we wanted, like that sixer your friend left in the back of the fridge after a late-night party. And even if it isn't terrific, if it hits the spot for us at the right time of day, we have a winner. That is to say, something we'll try again.
First off, we had a mixed-sixer (say that nine times fast!) of Lucky Girl beer, and it was pretty darn good. It’s produced by a Michigan company, which makes us swell with pride, even if it’s brewed in Pennsylvania. Yes, there was an IPA in there, and some other hot styles, but our favorite was the shandy. Nice to find a Michigan shandy we can work with. We were starting to feel ashamed about our love of Leinenkugel shandies. (OK, maybe not that ginger one …)
The good people at Powers Distributing let us know that beers from Deschutes Brewery is now available in Oakland and Macomb counties, so we drank a sixer of that too. It’s an Oregon beer. We had their Black Butte Porter, a Mirror Pond Ale, and a Twilight Summer seasonal was best. What does it say that an Oregon beer wants in on metro Detroit? We must be starting to look pretty sophisticated to the nation at large. See it on taps north of Eight Mile.
We got in touch with the “Beer Baron” to see what was in his icebox this week. He said it’s the 51K IPA from Blackrocks Brewery in Marquette, and and Atwater’s Mai Bock. But he’s also drinking the lighter, summerier Millking it Productions’ Mip Sno white ale and Grand Rabbits cream ale from Blackrocks as well. Cheers, Beer Baron!
Then there was our fall from grace earlier this month that led to a startling discovery. Dad always said that the secret to a good Manhattan was in the vermouth. So we acquired the very best vermouth I could: A 1-liter bottle of Carpano Antica Formula Sweet Vermouth. Man, does that stuff make a wonderful Manhattan! And since we had some pre-Prohibition-type bar cherries in the fridge, we made a few large Manhattans. After we ran out of the cherries, we made a few more Manhattans. Then, at about 2 a.m., wanting a nightcap, and having no more whiskey, even, we poured the vermouth over ice. We are not at all ashamed that we did. It’s so good over ice that we quickly ran out of Carpano Antica as well.
There is one more thing we wish we had this summer, and that’s that bottle of Covington Vodka we put somewhere out of reach to save it. It’s made from sweet potatoes, and has a caramel sweetness to it that you don’t usually get from this most neutral of all spirits. Maybe we’ll just have to break down and order direct. Seems like the perfect way to naturally sweeten a Bloody Mary a bit.