Leinenkugel’s 1888 Bock

June 17, 2009 by Aaron Goldfarb | Filed under Brewer: Jacob Leinenkugel, Country: America, Grade: D plus, Style: Bock.

5.1% ABV bottled

“Why don’t you just go drink some more of your…sugary poison!”

She slung a throw pillow at my head, perhaps taking the name a little too literally, and stormed into her bedroom.

Sugary poison?  How dare she besmirch my precious beer like that?  What a low blow.

She wasn’t mad at my love of beer because I was an alcoholic or anything, no, she’d have had no problem if I was just a passive and aloof macro-swilling drunkard; she was pissed at me  simply because I had a passion for beer.

Why does it seem that so many women hate it when a man has passions?  I’ve had fights started with me for being a foodie, a sports superfan, a cinephile, a cigar enthusiast, a golf nut, a book worm, a TV devotee, and, of course, a beer geek.  Why is it that hobbies, passions, arouse so much anger in women?

I’ll tell you why–and this won’t be that popular of sentiment, and might even be considered misogynistic:

Because women have none themselves.

I’m not saying that’s a good or a bad thing, I’m just making an observation.  Sporting events, nerdy collecting conventions, beer tastings, vintage record shops, golf courses, tiny art cinemas…they are always jam packed with men, and the sparse women in attendance were usually dragged there by their freak of a boyfriend or husband.

It seems women want to have passions like us men do–why else would they get so angry at ours?–but they just can’t manufacture any interest in the frivolous.  Nick Hornby brilliantly understood this in his great paean to sports fandom “Fever Pitch” and his even better paean to music love “High Fidelity.”  Women are just seemingly more interested in the important stuff in life:  careers, family, relationships, “John & Kate Plus Eight.”  And that’s fine, but that’s also kinda boring.

So drink my sugar poison…why yes, yes I will.  In fact, “sugary poison” has now been co-opted as my preferred thing to call beer.  I love when some girl I won’t ever deal with for the rest of time presents me with a catch phrase that I can now use for the rest of time.  Even if it is a bit of a misnomer, being that Googleable study after Googleable study has found that the nectar of the Gods can reduce risk of stroke, heart and vascular disease, dementia, and that it even hydrates better than water.  No wonder some monks literally live off the stuff.

Health benefits or not, I prefer my sugary poison to be incredibly tasty so at least I can wreck myself gloriously.  Having said that, with all the great beers I’ve been drinking and A pluses I’ve been awarding lately, you begin to lose sight of what differentiates the great from the good from the bad.

No problem.  Every few months I need to reset my perceptions, and I do that by drinking a new beer from my least favorite brewery, the brewery I fully expect to sue me one day, the brewery whose negative Vice Blog reviews always manages to drum a bunch of Great Lakes area people out of the woodwork to flood my comments area calling me such poetic names as “douche nozzle”:  yes, I’m talking about the  Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company.

I use dreadful Leinies to calibrate my drinking.  How else would I know what’s great if not knowing what’s meager?

Not unexpectedly, and thankfully for this experiment, the 1888 Bock is just plain gross and unpleasant.  No malt character, no taste, very watery, bordering on undrinkable.  Tastes absolutely nothing like a bock.  A waste of twelve ounces of sugary poison.  At least now I know that what I have been drinking recently is truly great.  Thank you, yet again Jake Leinenkugel!

Now I just need to find a girl who will passionately drink my sugary poison alongside me.  Until then, I’ll just be wondering why women aren’t as frivolous as us men.  Thoughts?


12 Responses to “Leinenkugel’s 1888 Bock”

  1. Dave says:

    I love your hate for this brewery and I’m right there with you. Theres a radio station here that has the Leinny boys on their show every Friday to talk sports and their beer. The host has such a boner for their beer it’s just friggin crazy. I really want to call in to the show and say hey man the beer sucks. It’s a sports show though. I would need to fool them with some Redskins talk first then give them HEY YOUR BEER SUCKS! =)

  2. I love the idea. If you do that you have to record the call and post in on your blog. Leinie enthusiasts are a committed bunch!

    I gotta say, I’m almost as tickled to see a Leinie on shelves that I’ve never had as I am to see a new DFH or Stone. I love to hate this brewery.

  3. Aaron says:

    Great post. I live in Leinie-land, and have never seen this in the stores. I’m considering myself lucky.

  4. Andy says:

    A friend of mine lives in Washington state. Just recently he wrote that he was so excited that Leinie’s became available. Oh, that’s right, there isn’t much good beer avail in that part of the country…

  5. He doesn’t know how lucky he is to live on the Pacific coast. I would probably drool over the beer at his local bar. I’m sure Deschutes and Rogue stuff is everywhere he goes.

  6. Nat Webster says:

    Leinie’s Sunset Wheat is Delta’s “craft” beer choice on its planes and in many of its Crown Rooms. I had one last summer and hated it. It tasted like juicy fruit gum. Not the taste I usually look for in a beer.

  7. Ha, that’s classic. I thought the Sunset Wheat tasted like toothpaste. I usually stick with gin when I’m flying. Not like they have a good selection on that either.

  8. Dirtyspeed says:

    I had this at a bar a few months ago. Luckily it was BW3 and I had spicy garlic chicken wings so the beer was simply used to cool my mouth and the flavor was masked by the sauce. Here the 1880 tap handle is a monsterous canoe paddle almost the same size as a real canoe paddle and it dwarfs the other tap handles. If I remember correctly the taste of this was similar to their Amber so I have a feeling that they just brew the same crap and slap a new label on it and make an outrageous tap handle that has a backwoods motif so if you get the feeling you are drinking wood and swamp water you can rest assure that that is what they are going for.

  9. I like your review, Dirty. Much better than mine.

  10. Stuart Hess says:

    I was fortunate enough to try this beer at a wedding in New Paltz last weekend. A friend of mine that was getting married is a huge beer geek like you claim to be he and loves all of Jacob Leinenkugel’s brews. He had four of his favorites served on tap at the reception. Sure, he didn’t have any beers with the words “cuvee” or “saison” on the label, whatever the hell that means. As a community activist it seems my friend is too busy making the world a better place and can’t afford beers with fancy labels that aren’t even as good as the Sunset Wheat, which is now my favorite beer. I’m sure you’d be offended to find out that everybody loved the beer, and I haven’t seen a party that crazy at the VFW since the Bills/Giants Superbowl. By the way jackass, could you be any more pompous if you tried?

  11. Foy says:

    Oh Stuart, how we love your kind so much.

    Some people love liquefied spearmint gum as beer, others dont. You and your friends can keep the leini’s.

  12. Stuart Hess says:

    Foy, your reference to me and “my kind” is disgusting. I’m reminded of a quote by one of my heros, Mr. William H. Cosby, who once declared “A word to the wise ain’t necessary, it’s the stupid ones that need the advice.” What Mr. Cosby meant is that “my kind” doesn’t need your advice, and you’re not lucky enough to get mine. I also hope you’re not lucky enough to try the Leinie’s Creamy Dark, a wonderful celebration of Cascade, Cluster, and Mt. Hood hops.

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