Captain Lawrence Nor’Easter (3rd batch, 2008)

January 25, 2009 by Aaron Goldfarb | Filed under Brewer: Captain Lawrence, Country: America, Grade: A-, Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale.

12% ABV from a bomber

Legend has it that noted Southern writer and drunkard William Faulkner would wake up most mornings after a night of heavy drinking certain that he had figured out the meaning of life the previous night.  Only problem was, now sober, he couldn’t remember what exactly he had realized while drunk.  Thus, the next night as he sat home imbibing alone he made sure to have a note pad at his side.  And, the next morning when he awoke prone on the floor, his head throbbing, a smile crossed his face as he stood up and promptly walked to his desk to find his notepad, which had scrawled on it in slurred handwriting his one brilliant thought from the previous evening:

“I’m drunk.”

I think we’ve all had great ideas while wasted only to realize they were simply great “ideas” once sobered up.  Tonight I had several offers for fun–a “Tiger Woods” Wii tournament in crazy ass Queens, some wine-drinking with a girl I just met down in the East Village–but, with the frigid temperatures and a desire for tranquility, I’ve decided to sit home drinking alone.

Luckily, I made a nice score today, finding Captain Lawrence’s semi-rare Nor’Easter at the Bowery Beer Room.  I was most excited as I had thought this limited quantity beer (only 225 cases, though, sadly, this beer “expert” still doesn’t know how many bombers are exactly in a case (help?)) was only available up at the Captain Lawrence Brewery in Pleasantville, New York and had already sold out even.

So, here’s the deal for this post, I’m gonna live blog as I get drunker and drunker throughout the evening.  Now, I don’t believe alcohol improves one’s writing–nor did Faulkner for that matter, he never wrote while drunk–but it should nevertheless make for an avant garde post here at the least.  Or, rather, maybe a really shitty post.  But artists have to try new things.  If I write honestly–and I will, never even correcting the drunken errors that will deserve (sic)s in the morning–it could get downright “The Truman Show” embarrassing as I’m not exactly a normal person when I drink at home alone.  It won’t be an exact science because–presumably–the fact that I am writing my own Saturday night ethnography will perhaps prevent me from keeping it 100% real, you know like the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, you can’t observe something without changing it, like why reality TV innately can never be real.  Then again, the drunker you get the less self-aware you get, so who knows?

And with that, let’s begin, here at 10:06 P.M. as I pop the top on the Nor’Easter.  It should really have a “cork and cage” top, as would befit such a rare, high-quality beer as this one.  Pours quite dark, almost black with a maroon gleam to it.  Interesting taste.  The bottle labels it a winter warmer, noting it is an ale brewed with elderberries and aged in bourbon barrels.  I have no fucking clue what an elderberry is, sounds like it might be in the same genus as the snozzberry.

10:15 PM, I should note the conditions I’m dealing with.  Just on the positive end of recovery after a week-long cold.  My apartment is fucking freezing and I have a space heater on the floor pointed right at my balls.  Oh, and my internet is down for some reason forcing me to steal the linksys WiFi (“pixienet”) from the old bag that lives below me.  And I really have no plans for the evening, no movies or TV shows to catch up on, nothing to read or write, no correspondence to be made, nothing.  I’ll let the alcohol pave my way, shape my evening.  Currently, I’m just drinking and “watching” channel 628 on my cable.  That’s actually a golden oldies radio station that plays a lot of songs that most people my age have never heard of and would probably hate if they had heard them but which I inexplicably love and know every single lyric to, stuff like “Creeque Alley,” “The Book of Love,” “Happy Together,”* and “Lightening Strikes” by the inimitable Lou Christie.

10:40, with nothing on television except for deplorable Dane Cook comedy specials, The Winter X Games and Australian Open, and “Welcome Home, Roscoe Jenkins,” I’m forced to throw in the only Netflix I have sitting around the house, a somewhat acclaimed independent Argentinian film from last year, “XXY.”  Here’s the synopsis:  “Ines Efrom plays Alex, a 15-year-old hermaphrodite in this compelling tale.”  Let it never be said I’m not an open-minded guy.  I saw “Milk” last night, never would have guessed that would end up being only the second most “gay” film I would see this weekend.**

10:45, OK, “XXY” is incredibly artsy and subtitled.  Not a problem, typically, I love films like that as I am indeed a cineaste, but drunk I can’t understand anything so sophisticated and my reading prowess becomes too slow to keep up with the words on screen.  Oh, yes, I have somehow become quite buzzed.  I’m shocked the Nor’Easter is 12% as it goes down so smooth, but the results with less than a half bottle finished are evidence enough.

11:04, watching the Shane Mosley fight end, I’ve decided the Nor’Easter is quite good.  Thinner mouthfeel than I’d like, it actually goes down like a wine, maybe like a wild ale, and I do feel like I can taste a little wild yeast in there which adds to the intrigue of the beer.  It’s yet another unique offering from Captain Lawrence.  I’m starting to feel like they are one of the rare breweries–along with, say, Dogfish Head, Stone, and Allagash–that make beers so sui generis that from taste alone I can place exactly where they come from.  Quite a tribute to them.  I guess I’d like the Nor’Easter to be more bourbon-y but don’t listen to me, I like everything more bourbon-y.  Hell, maybe I should scrap beer and just make bourbon my daily drink, who am I kidding?

11:05, my stolen WiFi is only connecting at three out of five bars, making it too slow to look at porn.  Drag, isn’t it.***

11:15, I go to the bathroom to piss.  Heading out I glance at the mirror and notice my sideburns don’t see to be even.  I spend about ten minutes continually taking a “little off” each side trying to make them match.  Instead I just fuck them up more and make them a lot higher than I’d like.  God, I’m gonna look like a retard tomorrow.

11:16, I decide to call up some “Summer Heights High” on HBO On Demand.  You ever seen it?  A very funny Australian show, though not quite as genius as some people claim.  I highly recommend it though.  Puck you.  Getting tipsy far more rapidly than I expected or wanted to.  I’m eating some cheese and crackers to sop some of it up.  More specificially Australian cheddar from the Fairway Market.  Sublime!  Is their anything the Aussies are good at?  Eh, relief pitching I guess****.

11:17, Jesus, my fucking HBO On Demand cuts out too!  What the fuck, Time Warner?!  Luckily the best episode of “Curb Your Enthusiasm” is currently on regular HBO:  “Krazee–Eyez Killa!”

11:45, I just did one-hundred drunken push-ups.  Some time ago I might have been embarrassed to reveal to you that, for whatever reason, I enjoy doing push-ups and free weight curls when I’m toasted, but in recent months I’ve learned from other male friends that they too enjoy that pasttime.  How bizarre!  Men are so weird, right?  I’ve thought long and hard about why I enjoy doing push-ups whilst drunk and I’ve come to two possible conclusions:

1.  When one is drinking home alone they are in a–somewhat–self-loathing state and they can’t deny the evidence that they are injesting hundreds if not thousands of liquid calories making them, perhaps naively, think, “Hmmm…I should probably at least do something to counteract this, fat ass!”

2.  It’s so fucking easy to do push-ups and lift weights while drunk as your pain threshold becomes astronomical.  Sober, even pumping out fifty in a row is…well, a workout.  But drunk, son, I can throw down one-hundred in a row, no problem.

12:01-12:09, wine-drinking girl calls me.  I don’t answer.  Not cause I’m asshole but because I never answer my phone no matter who calls.  Two minutes later she texts me:

“come over ;)”

“it’s too cold.  you can come to me if you want.”

“r u drunk?”

“not exactly.  but you are.  so don’t be a hypocrite.  and quit using “r” and “u” and emoticons in texts to me.”

Radio silence.

12:15, I realize I could probably be hooking up post-haste if I wasn’t such an asshole.  I should probably just accept that the women I date will write in what is almost a completely different language from what I know.  I decided recently that I’m too immature to date women my age so I started pretty much exclusively dating women born in the mid-1980s and higher.  “And worse” you might say if you are a woman my age.  But cut me some slack, they like what I like:  drinking, being attractive, not getting married, not having kids, and not moving to the sticks.  So, heck, I guess I should allow them to write to me like retards.  Settled.  My new philosophy starts tomorrow.  I shudder to think about the first 1990s girl I date.  Will I need a translator with me at all times?!

12:16, another text from her:

“YOU ARE an asshole.”

(Nothing I didn’t know.)

Aaron Goldfarb, influencing modern grammer more than Strunk and White.

So, I guess I need a new 1980s girlfriend now.  Any volunteers?  Please fax me your resume.

12:20, you ever have the strange remembrance come to your head of some girl (or guy) you had a one-night stand with years ago?  You knew them for all of, say, twelve hours, eight of which you were either drunk and/or sleeping, yet you’ve never forgotten them.  Not cause they were necessarily interesting or great in bed or even because they did something so oddball that you use it as fodder for bar stories for the rest of your life, but rather because…well who knows?  Any how, I thought of one of those girls and I decided to look her up on Facebook.  She’s more attractive than I recall.  Looks like she lives in San Francisco now.  I can’t tell whether she is still single.  I wonder if she has ever looked me up.

12:22, my friend Derek texts to tell me he’s drinking some Distiller’s Masterpiece.  I am so fucking jealous.  You have no clue what that is, do you?

12:35, I’ve finally finished the bottle and, I gotta say, I liked Nor’Easter better the more and more I drank it.  Just like Captain Lawrence’s Cuvee de Castleton this is a very complex, sophisticated beer.  So glad to have tried it.  Might be my record holder for the longest duration I’ve spent on a single bomber, clocking in at about the same time as a Greg Maddox complete game.

1:01, hmmmm, now what to do?  I’m not that tired but I do have a busy day tomorrow.*****  I’d like another drink but here’s the problem when you’re a beer connesseur:  I don’t have a Coors Light in my fridge.  And, that’s, truthfully, what I need now.  All I got in my fridge are 9% stouts and asskicking barley wines and highly esteemed beers I would never want to drink while so lit up.  So I’m screwed.  I’m not going to waste any good beer and even if I was willing too I would have to spend another hour or two to drink them and get incredibly hammered in the process.

I guess I’ll get in bed now and watch something stupid on E! or MTV.  I’ve had a nice night.  Don’t let anyone tell ya you can’t have fun alone.  Or drink alone.  I haven’t figured out any secrets to the universe, I haven’t figured out the meaning of life, either, but, to quote Faulkner:

“I’m drunk.”


*I chuckle every time the great “Happy Together” plays and the line, “If I should call you up, invest a dime,” thinking how precious it is that people used to use pay phones.  Oh, and a call was only ten fucking cents too!

**Was that offensive?  If so, let me apologize.

***Name the famous pop culture reference.

****Lookin’ at your Graham Lloyd.  Though you were great in bench clearing brawls.

*****Of drinking and watching sports, yes.

6 Responses to “Captain Lawrence Nor’Easter (3rd batch, 2008)”

  1. amm002 says:

    Great post, that’s pretty damn strong for a winter warmer.

  2. I mean a bomber of 12% beer is essentially like an entire bottle of red wine.

    Rereading this post sober I am surprised at how cogent it was. I don’t remember writing some of the latter things. Ha.

  3. Surely this will make our neck of the woods????

  4. Loren says:

    Typically there are 12 750ml bottles in a case.

    BTW, a 750ml bottle is not called a bomber.

    Funny stuff as always. r u still dating that chick or no?


  5. Aaron says:

    Thanks for the insight re: cases, I’ve always wondered that and the internet is no help. Yes, you’re right, it’s technically not a bomber. I’m lazy, I call anything bigger than a 12 ounce and smaller than a Methuselah a bomber.

    i am not. lol. :(

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