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Archive for the ‘Brewer: The Lost Abbey’ Category

Veritas 004

November 18th, 2009 by Aaron Goldfarb | No Comments | Filed in Brewer: The Lost Abbey, Country: America, Grade: A plus, Style: Wild Ale

The Brew Slut*

The Brew Slut had considered calling herself the Brew Hottie, or the Brew Bitch, or even the Brew HasAVagina, but ultimately nixed all those options.  The Brew Hottie sounded too childish, the Brew Bitch sounded too aggressively feminist, dykeish even, and she in no way wanted any cute beer geeks to think she swung that way.  That’s why she had briefly considered the Brew HasAVagina, but ultimately thought that might be seen as clinical if not confusing.   What has a vagina?  The brew itself?!  Suffice to say, Brew Pussy was also out for obviously reasons.

Thus she decided to become the Brew Slut (to differentiate herself from those boring girls that actually cared about beer), bought a URL from GoDaddy, and registered her new beer blog with Wordpress.  She was ready to go.  To take over the beer world.

Now the Brew Slut didn’t really know much about beer, but that was fine, she was young and didn’t know much about anything.  But she sure liked to drink, loved going to bars and having all the boys fawning all over her.  Not the cool bars of course.  At the cool bars the cool boys paid attention to the legitimately attractive girls, the thin girls, the non-annoying girls.

The Brew Slut had gone from club to lounge to tavern to pub to dive to watering hole until she finally found one place where men paid attention to her:  the craft beer bar.  At first, she had thought she’d accidentally wandered into a gay bar.  Besides the waitress, there wasn’t a single female in the joint!  But no, these men were dressed too schlubby and were far too out of shape to be gay.

She had sat down, ordered an Allagash White–the only beer on tap she’d ever even heard of–and before she’d taken one sip, guys were talking to her.  Yeah, the guys were kinda chunky, slathered in bad facial hair, wedged into tight beer-related tee-shirts, nervous and fidgety despite being socially lubricated–but they were talking to her!  They didn’t care that she was mediocre-looking, that she had a big beer gut, or that she was loud and annoying, they still desired her!  These were now her people!  And so long as she pretended that she might one day fuck these dorks, they continued to slobber all over her.  And she loved the attention.

The Brew Slut started posting three days a week on her Brew Slut blog, mainly cut-and-paste jobs of brewery press releases, stolen Google images of beer bottles, a rare review of a common beer she’d had which were essentially just regurgitations of other smarter people’s earlier reviews of said beer.  But what the Brew Slut most specialized in were posting photos of herself.

The Brew Slut comically hugging a huge flight of beer samples.

The Brew Slut shoving her sloppy tits into some unwitting bartender’s face.

The Brew Slut clinking glasses and cheers-ing her “fellow” beer geeks.

Man, the Brew Slut thought she was one gorgeous creature.  And why wouldn’t she?  For every time the Brew Slut posted pictures of herself she’d immediately get an enormous influx of comments from web-surfing beer geeks:

u look hawt brew slut lol

I really like you in that dress, Brew Slut.

more pics plz!!!!! :)

The Brew Slut’s blog traffic was increasing rapidly, as beer geeks told their geeky friends about this chick–this Beer Slut!–that actually likes beer!  Like US.  She must be the perfect woman.

Trying to spread her “brand”–the Brew Slut was one of those dumb people that always spoke in buzz words like “branding” and “paradigm”–the Brew Slut took to Facebook and Twitter with abandon..  She would use all the tools of “Web 2.0″ and “social networking” to become a star.  She befriended on Facebook all the big wigs in the industry.  Began writing to them on Twitter too.

The BrewSlut @dogfishbeer Hope to one day have a pint with Sam! #whore 1 minute ago from txt

TheBrewSlut @sierranevadaca Your beers make me horny! #whore 2 minutes ago from TweetDeck

TheBrewSlut @StoneGreg Me, you, and an Arrogant Bastard sounds like a terrific 3some!  #whore 3 minutes ago from Twitterific

Shamelessly e-flirting.  Dozens upon dozens of tweets and re-tweets and re-tweet-tweets per day.

Wouldn’t you know it, the guys that ran the beer industry soon took to her just like the beer geeks did.  They started buying advertising from her, inviting her to beer festivals and private tastings, special release parties and pairing dinners–gratis, comped, on the hizzy–where she would yak their ears off about her brand under the guise of interviewing them for her blog.  All the while shoving her tits in their faces.

The brewmasters were only human and a girl–even a mediocre one that brays like a donkey–was still more fun to be around than 99% of the beer geeks that hectored them with questions about proper attenuation.

Drunk one night off of some of the rarest beers in the world, after finally reaching the top, the Brew Slut went to bed thinking:

“What’s everyone talking about us gals having it tough?  All you gotta do is find an industry with a lack of females in it, and a ton of loser-ish men, and you will easily conquer it.  Man, it’s great to have a vagina.”

It was the only wise thought the Brew Slut had ever had.

Veritas 004

8% ABV bottled

I enjoyed this Lost Abbey masterpiece during an impromptu souring tasting alongside Temptation and Beatifcation–masterpieces in their own right–yet Veritas blew both out of the water.  My man DW provided this ultra-rare retired beer, a blending of Yellow Bus, Duck Duck Gooze, and Cuvee de Tomme, one of which I’d had before (Tomme), one of which I own but have yet to tipple (Duck Duck) and one of which I shall probably never touch sadly enough (Yellow Bus.)  I didn’t know what to expect and was a little thrown when the brew poured an an apricot orangey yellow with just a touch of foam.  Didn’t exactly smelled sour and I started to get confused about the style.  But my first sip was magnificently wild and each additional one was even better.  Fizzy but smooth, strong tastes of sweet peaches which blended nicely with a citric and grape tartness to make for some sumptuous drinking.  Just silly complex, juicy and bursting with flavor, I see absolutely no flaw in this offering.  Even most A pluses have a minor flaw or two, but not this one.  Not only the best wild ale I’ve ever had, Veritas 004 is in the running for the best beer of my life.  You’ll probably never get to try this beer and, shit, I probably will never get to try it again, so I guess we’re both back to square one now, aren’t we?

Fuck what all the haters keep lobbing toward Lost Abbey–overpriced, overflat, etc–they have quickly become maybe my favorite brewery in America.


*Any similarities to sluts living or dead, is probably intentional.  And, if there actually is some “Brew Slut” somewhere out there, I appologize for taking her name in vain.

Lost Abbey Angel’s Share(s)

July 29th, 2009 by Aaron Goldfarb | No Comments | Filed in Brewer: The Lost Abbey, Country: America, Grade: A regular, Style: Strong Ale

Who says Twitter is useless?

Well, pretty much everybody who isn’t producing bad movies that they don’t want you to know are bad via word of mouth and Iranian elections protesters that no one is paying attention to.  I too found one swell use for it recently.  Allow me to elucidate.  Back in May I attended the SAVOR beer festival in our nation’s capital.  As is the case at most classy events–weddings, Bar Mitzvah’s, junior proms I’m chaperoning–I arrived appropriately soused.  And, when I’m appropriately soused, I’m inappropriately confident in my ability to seduce, impress, and entertain people.  Usually women.  But in this case, at SAVOR, I drunkenly marched up to Lost Abbey’s brewmaster Tomme Arthur and proudly slurred to him that just the previous day his Serpent’s Stout had handily defeated the more-legendary Deschutes Abyss in a blind stout drink-off my friends and I had conducted.  With a friendly smile and not much more, he seemingly dismissed me in the same way countless women have dismissed my drunken inveiglery.

Nevertheless, that next week after having typed up a post reporting on that very same Imperial Stout Drink-off, I then tweeted to the masses:

My imperial stout drink-off btwn: @lostabbey Serpent’s @DeschutesBeer Abyss & Avery The Czar http://tinyurl.com/ry9c7k

(If you know nothing about Twitter, @’ing someone else’s screenname creates a link which allows that user, in the cases above, Lost Abbey and Deschutes, to read the tweet I posted.)

Well, lo and behold, a few hours later I got an e-mail from the big man himself, Tomme Arthur, who had seen my tweet, read my Vice Blog post, and been compelled to write me.  Excerpted…

“…I actually remember our conversation from Savor so score one for sobriety!  Send me your address where you would like some goodies sent and we’ll return the love…”

Not bad.  “Goodies.”  I assumed I’d be getting some keychains, bumper stickers, bottle openers, perhaps a t-shirt or some glassware.  Which would have been great.  So imagine my shock then when a massive package arrived the next week from FedEx, which I actually had to sign for and show my ID to prove I was 21–I was getting anxious!–and in which I found neatly packed a bottle of the Lost Abbey’s swell saison Carnevale and a bottle each of both their bourbon and brandy barrel-aged Angel’s Shares, two legendary West Coast rarities I thought I may never touch as long as I should live.

This previous Friday, friend and fellow beer blogger The Captain was visiting NYC and I joined him at his hotel room for an epic beer tasting–more of which I will discuss tomorrow–but which we led off with both Angel’s Share.

Brandy Barrel-Aged (2008)

12.5% ABV 375 mL bottled

First up was the lately-much-maligned brandy barrel-aged.  At one time, and we’re talking recently, like as recent as earlier this year, I can recall it being in the top 30 or so of Beer Advocate’s Top Beers on Planet Earth, but the events surrounding this very year’s release and some questionable carbonation levels–and some bitchy holy-than-though beer folks–caused it to have a most precipitous fall into oblivion.  I wasn’t sure what to expect other than that I would surely like the bourbon barrel-aged Angel’s Share better because, I mean, ipso facto, I like bourbon better than brandy.

I was grossly wrong.  This beer was absolutely sublime.  Smelled nearly identical to the glorious J.W. Lees Harvest Ale port casked beer, a glorious beer in and of itself.  This is called a strong ale, but the taste is very much that of a barley wine.  Dark caramel malts, tons of vanilla and oak flavors, a nice little candi hint, and of course a perfect amount of sweet, sweet brandy.  The brandy and the beer combine so flawlessly it’s amazing.  It’s like they were made for each other.  Truly a special and unique offering.  As for carbonation, it is indeed negligable, but I hardly cared.  This is a 12.5% fairly flat beer with a rich, syrupy, and luxurious mouthfeel.  And that’s how it should be in my opinion.  What, would you want, a fizzy, efferevescent beer with these same flavors?  Can’t please everybody I guess, but you sure pleased me, Lost Abbey.  And I’d be saying that even if I hadn’t gotten this expensive beer for free!  (Sorry for bragging, I got excited.)


Bourbon Barrel-Aged (2009)

12.5% ABV 375 mL bottled

OK, so Lost Abbey is the first brewery to ever send me free shit, which automatically makes them an inductee into The Vice Blog’s Turn-Me-Into-A-Shameless-Shill Hall of Fame, but luckily they are one of the finest breweries in America and I don’t need to shamelessly shill for them, I can be a straightshooter.  I had saved the bourbon barrel-aged Angel’s Share for second because nothing ruins my drinking experience more than having beer in qualitative descending order as opposed to ascending (see my recent De Struise tasting.)

For as much as people had been bashing the brandy barrel-aged, the bourbon barrel-aged had continued to get near unanimous praise, holding steady high on the BA Top 100, often drifting into the top ten even.  I love bourbon and I love bourbon-barreled beers, so I thought this would be a masterpiece.  But, you know, even though it was very, very, very good, it simply wasn’t as good as the brandy offering.  It was much hotter.  The taste harsher on the palate.  Is that due to the barreling or the year?  Hard to say.  But based only on what I tasted, I simply don’t feel like the bourbon combined quite as well with the strong ale as the brandy did.  Don’t get me wrong though, this is still a great beer, absolutely worth locating.  I kinda just wish I’d set it aside for a little longer to let the booziness calm down and mellow out, the bourbon mix into the beer a little better.  Hopefully I’ll get to do that some day.

And maybe Twitter can help me out some more…


Battle of the Imperial Stouts

June 4th, 2009 by Aaron Goldfarb | No Comments | Filed in Brewer: Avery, Brewer: Deschutes, Brewer: The Lost Abbey, Country: America, Grade: A plus, Grade: A regular, Grade: A-, Style: Stout

Deschutes The Abyss (2008)

11% ABV bottled


Avery The Czar

11.03% ABV bottled


The Lost Abbey Serpent’s Stout

10.5% ABV bottled

When you’re a besotted loner, it’s virtually impossible to do blind taste tests.  What are you going to do?  Have your cat pour you some beers and mix them up?  Visiting friends in DC over the weekend, I decided to bring along a bottle of the legendary and possibly highest regarded stout in the world, The Abyss, sent to me by San Diego legend Jesse the Hutt to share with my pals.  And when I noticed that my friend Derek had bottles of similarly ABV’ed and not-as-well-but-still-well-regarded The Czar Imperial Stout and Serpent’s Stout, I thought it might be fun to do a little blind taste test.

I always hate, in a way, giving universally regarded beers A pluses because I often wonder if I’m reviewing the beer or the esteem the label already has.  It’s almost impossible to separate the two unless you do it blindly.  It’s why symphony tryouts nowadays are conducted behind curtains.  No matter how hard they tried, no matter how non-biased they thought they could be, judges couldn’t stop themselves from down grading certain minorities, unwittingly thinking it impossible they could play as well as others.

We had Derek’s kindly girlfriend distribute the glasses and here were my findings.

Mystery Beer A

I thought this beer had a great smell, a very complex nose which reminded me of the splendid Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout.  Unfortunately, the taste was much simpler, nothing like that A+ offering.  A creamy, smooth beer with bold chocolate and espresso flavors and a fairly sweet taste bordering on cloying.  A very drinkable, frequent-tippling stout, though no masterpiece.


Mystery Beer B

An incredibly smooth nose that drove through my nostrils and into my brain.  Delicious!  A kind mouthfeel with strong tastes of burnt coffee, molasses, black licorice, and even a little vanilla.   Absolutely wonderful and I would drink it every single day of the year but it did not completely knock my socks off.


Mystery Beer C

This one was right up my alley.  Everything I want an imperial stout to be.  Incredibly boozy like some stout/quadruple sort of hybrid, but smooth as silk.  Tickles every single inch of your pharynx and larynx before plummeting into your belly and filtering through your liver and making you dance around the room with joy.  What a pleasure to drink.  A rich chocolate sweetness perfectly balanced with roasted coffee, a burning rumminess, oodles of dark fruits, and a tad hops bitterness.  Smooth, outstanding, a masterpiece.  Cannot say enough about this surely already legendary beer.


Though I liked them all, I didn’t really think it was close, Mystery Beer C won in a blowout on my scorecard.  In fact, it won on 5 out of 5 taste testing friends’ scorecards, all 5 thinking it a landslide.

Beer C had to be the gorgeous wax-dipped bottle of The Abyss, right?


We were shocked when Derek’s girlfriend revealed the answers…

Mystery Beer A:  The Czar (A-)*

Mystery Beer B:  The Abyss (A)

Mystery Beer C:  Serpent’s Stout (A+)


This can’t be possible.  With newfound knowledge of what each beer was, we tried them again, and still had to agree that the handsomely corked-and-caged Serpent’s Stout was superior to them all.

The next day, we ran into Tomme Arthur at Savor and told him of our findings.  He gave us a stern eye-bulging and said, “Shhh…keep it down, don’t let any one know.”  A cocky smirk fell over his face, like he was proud of the little secret that only he and a few others know, that his imperial stout is better than maybe the most highly-regarded stout in the world.

*Unfortunately not as great as their masterpiece Mephistopheles’ Stout.

The Lost Abbey Carnevale Ale

May 19th, 2009 by Aaron Goldfarb | 3 Comments | Filed in Brewer: The Lost Abbey, Country: America, Grade: B plus, Style: Saison/Farmhouse Ale

6.5% ABV from a 750 mLer

You know you’re a New Yorker when you sing and dance to your ipod while walking the streets.  I’m not talking a slight, unwitting head bob, a silent mouthing of the lyrics to a favorite song in particular.  I’m talking straight up, belting out the lyrics with a 90% accuracy aided by impromptu dance moves and shit like you’re home alone on a Saturday night, drunk on wine, with nothing better to do.  Or better yet, like you’re Tony Manero in that famous opening scene.  You’ve finally reached full uninhibition.  You don’t care that you’re on a packed Broadway sidewalk.  You don’t care that the M&M Store bag-toting tourists are gawking at you.  (It’s a story they’ll certainly share with friends when they get back to Tulsa.  Golly!  Get a picture, Suzie!)  All you care about is enjoying your music.  The way you want to enjoy it.  Everyone else around you be damned.

With minimal private living space in the city you have to live publicly.  Uninhibited.

Restaurants become your dining room.  Eating at home in NYC would involve cooking in a kitchen the size of a closet, chopping and dicing things on a precariously-balanced cutting board teetering on the edge of the sink, boiling water a few inches from a sauce sloshing around, having to actually back out of the kitchen to fully open the oven door, and if by some miracle you can actually prepare something edible this process is finished off by pulling up to the closest thing you have to a dining room table, the coffee table, where you knock a few magazines and Netflix out of the way to free up a plate-sized space to chow down.  Nah, not worth it.  But are restaurants really better?  You’re not doing the cooking but you’re jam-packed into a minuscule dining space.  You’re nearly sitting on someone’s lap.  You can’t remember if you’re on a single date or a double because another couples’ table is one inch away from yours.  Your business is everyone’s.  So you might as well make it that way.  You’re going to overhear what other diners are saying and they’re going to likewise overhear you.  All the lovey dovey shit you might say.  All the embarrassing “job interview” questions you exchange on a first date.*  Everyone knows the couples on first dates.  The lack of rapport is palpable.  However, this close proximity dining can be most embarrassing when you’re spatting with a longtime romantic partner, hilarious when other diners are doing the spatting.  There’s a million stories in this city and you can’t help but hear every single fucking one of them.

The bar becomes your living room.  I have countless friends in New York.  And in how many of those people’s living rooms have I stood?  Maybe two.  That’s just not how it works here.  My friends could be homeless for all I know.  No one wants to go to another person’s part of town.  And few have living rooms big enough to accommodate more people than the one or two that actually live in the pad.  Thus, you make bars your living rooms.  You go there to celebrate, to mourn, to watch sports and big events, play games, shoot the shit, catch up on old times, create new times, and just like Tim Riggins, to make some memories.  The drawback of this, of course, is that there’s gonna be a lot of people in “your” living room that you don’t necessarily want there.  Ugly people, loud people, smelly people, and dumb people.  You have to find the bar with the patrons, the ambiance, the culinary output, the TV setup, and the drink most simpatico with your desires.  And you will.

The subway becomes your car.  Instead of sitting in a car in bumper to bumper traffic, you’re standing crotch to ass, face to crotch, hand to crotch…goddammit, how come someone’s smelly crotch is everywhere I turn?!  Instead of perfectly modulated air or heat in a sealed environment, you’re…well you’re always sweating your ass off.  Doesn’t matter if it’s a dog day of summer or the middle of winter, you will be sweltering.  Instead of peaceful music on your ipod dock DJ’ed by you, you’re listening to white noise, and squealing teenagers, panhandling ragamuffins, and that Mariachi band that goes from car-to-car on weekends.  Damn, they’re good.  I always toss them whatever loose change I have.

The park becomes your backyard.  Instead of sitting peacefully on your porch smoking a cigar, laying in your hammock drinking a lemonade, grilling a big tenderloin on your massive propane grill, and playing catch with your Weimaraner, you’re mentally figuring out how big a chalk outline of your dead body would be and finding that requisite amount of hopefully dry grass space throughout Sheep Meadow, hopefully the Great Lawn, or maybe a Westside or Eastside pier, or some other place you know, and plunking down amongst all the other sweaty bodies.  Trying to read or do a crossword, but it’s too sunny.  Trying to wet your whistle, ah, but the closest vendor is one-hundred yards away and charges $4 for a Gatorade.  Trying to enjoy a bee-you-tee-full Padron but, “Hey guy!  Could you put dat fuckin’ see-gar out, before I snap it in two.”  And, grilling a nice steak, ha.  Yeah, right.  Get a reservation and have a good credit limit.  At least your teeny tiny dog found a rock to shit on.  Now does any one have a plastic baggy I can borrow?

A back alley becomes your love den.  A nice five-bedroom house with a massive bedroom, a canopy bed worthy of a sheik with nice silk sheets and fluffy pillows?  Yeah, right.  Neither of you have a car of course and she lives in Park Slope and you live near Columbus Circle.  Your place?  She’s not that kind of girl.  Her place?  Eh, I’m not interested.  And cabs are pricey!  The back alley seems perfectly fine for a quickie.  Ooh, and so romantic.  I guess it wasn’t garbage day today.  And did that cardboard box just rustle?  Why, it must be some poor fella’s house.  Just shut up and hurry up.  OK, I’m trying.  I’m sorry the brick wall is scraping up your palms and I’m sorry you’re tired of having that skirt above your head.  Yeah, I do agree, it does stink back here.  Whoops, just grafittied the wall.

I sit writing this in my detestable Starbucks.  For it is my office.  I have the absolute worst seat in the house, the one right next to what would be called the “Fixin’s” Bar if we were at a Jersey Turnpike Roy Rogers.  My back touches this counter, my laptop screen visible to every one that visits it after receiving their order.  You wouldn’t believe how long people spend there preparing their coffees.  What exactly are they doing?  I drink my coffee black so adding stuff to your coffee seems somewhat foreign to me.  Having said that, I drink my iced coffee with Sweet’N Low and a splash of skim milk so I know how long it takes to accomplish that menial task.  Like fifteen seconds.  Yet all these Upper West Side mommies, real-life Gossips Girls, wannabe artistic scenesters but really Central Park West trust funders, and lingering Columbia U students take upwards of two minutes to add all the ingredients they want to add to their coffees.  Cinnamon and vanilla and nutmeg and, well, I guess that’s just the cheapskates’ way of making their Joe more fancy.

But, alas, I still prefer being here to writing at my home office, i.e. my lap on my sofa.  I can actually focus better here, enjoy myself, put myself in that special little place I need to go to get writing done.  Sadly, I can’t stop my special little place from playing bad Muzak (on sale for just $11.99 at the counter!).  You win some, you lose some.  Each person at the Fixin’s counter, oh, and there’s a new one every twenty seconds or so, stacking up like lemurs at the edge of a cliff, tries to read what’s on my laptop screen.  It’s a natural human reaction, I understand.  Luckily, I have become fully uninhibited.  The most important thing in this tiny and cramped world I live in.  So I DON’T GIVE A FUCK–can you see that over my shoulder?  Should I bold that?–I DON’T GIVE A FUCK and have no problem if they read this.  If YOU read this, fat mommy behind me in ill-fitting Capris, revealing a little too much of your prickly bobby-socked cankles, chowing down on an 800 calorie Marshmallow Twizzle and frozen limeade on your emasculated working hubby’s dime, propping your Peg Perego “Duette” stroller with your in vitro-fertilized ugly twin babes right beside my right ear, allowing them to loudly bellow in off-key synchronicity the theme song to some show I’ve certainly never heard of nor ever will because I don’t have any fucking kids.  Lady, you punish me with all the above and yet you still want to read over my shoulder?  Well go ahead, I just don’t care…

My second career The Lost Abbey brew, kindly shared with me by my pal DW from his The Lost Abbey Patron Saints Club bi-monthly shipment.  I’ve just gotten into saisons hardcore this spring and early summer and this is a nice example of the style.  Very fruity with tastes of lemon zest and orange citrus, a mild spiciness, and a potent yeastiness.  Slight hops and a minimal sour funkiness, but I would have preferred a perhaps more bold use of Brett for added complexity.  Incredibly drinkable and refreshing, it smells a heck of a lot better than it tastes, but it tastes pretty damn good too.


*I would never go on a first date to a restaurant.  Dumb.

The Lost Abbey Lost & Found Abbey Ale

November 5th, 2008 by Aaron Goldfarb | No Comments | Filed in Brewer: The Lost Abbey, Country: America, Grade: B plus, Style: Dubbel

7.5% ABV from a bomber

In the 1960s, Stanford University psychologist Walter Mischel conducted a famous experiment. He gave a group of four-year-olds a single marshmallow, telling them they could have it to eat that very moment. However, were they to wait for just twenty minutes, he would then give each child two marshmallows. Tracking over the next fourteen years the one-third of children that chose to delay gratification and the two-thirds that chose to immediately consume the sole marshmallow, Mischel came to find that the group that deferred excelled over the other larger group in just about every facet. In fact, by the time they took the SATs, the one-third group had blown away their peers to the average tune of over 200 points better on the standardized test.

Statistics are damned statistics but I never loved this experiment. Perhaps that is because I would have, without question, immediately consumed the single marshmallow. Yet a lifetime of personal statistics show me to have scored in the 99th percentile on just about every standardized test I’ve ever taken. So what gives?

I think my paradoxical statistical outlier status in this scenario would come down to the fact that I’ve always felt it’s better to enjoy the guaranteed present over the hazy future. You know, a bird in the hand being better than two in the bush? Who knows what could have happened in those twenty minutes of delayed experimental gratification? I could have died. Mischel could have died and never brought back the second marshmallow. I could have become allergic to marshmallows. Or the marshmallow could have gone bad, if that’s even possible. You say those thoughts are silly and of course they are, but that’s cause the marshmallow experiment was just a meager microcosm. In the real world, those twenty minutes could be days…or more likely, years.

I’ve always thought about these things and always concluded that waiting for a better future is just silly. The present needs to be enjoyed at all costs lest you needlessly squander it. 401Ks? Savings? I’d rather have the money now to enjoy than maybe have it at 65 when there’s a decent statistical chance that I’ll be dead and overwhelming odds that I’ll be a bitter old Jew with a cock that barely works and a dank odor coming from body that I’m unable to extinguish.

The great Dostoevsky felt similarly. A success even in his day, the second he got his book money, he spent it, fueling his gambling compulsions with week-long binges. Giving him an immediate joy and a craziness of life that forced him to always hunger to be better, write more, and earn more money.  And it probably made him the legendary author still not read by AP English students today.

I’ve always realized that living in the present makes me happier. People more concerned about the future are people that are unhappy. People that are never able to enjoy life. To enjoy what they have this very second. Did Scarlett seem ebullient when she exclaimed, “Tomorrow is another day!”? Did Annie seem to be having fun when she said, “Tomorrow…you’re only a day away!”? No?  You know why? Because they were fucking miserable! Annie a little orphan and Scarlett alone at a worthless plantation with her beloved not giving a damn about her.  They would have been better off trying to improve their presents that wishing for a better future.

That is why I try to concern myself about a future I have no control over and instead focus on the day in front of me which I can control. So cellaring beers? Uh uh. If I got good shit, it’s time to enjoy it post-haste, surrounded by hopefully a collection of bonhomonious men and women.  Thus, when a friend was able to score a bottle of Lost & Found, I wanted to consume it as soon as possible, never having had a beer from the legendary Lost Abbey before. Delayed satisfaction is for the birds.

I’m not sure if this was the most signature one to start with, but it was still solid. I drank it the same night I drank a St. Bernardus Abt 12 bomber and it made for an interesting comparison.  Lost & Found has much more muted flavors.  I expect a dubbel to overwhelm me a little more than this.  Didn’t feel that complex either.  It has a slight chocolaty sweetness and the raisins shine through quite a bit but other than that it somewhat bored me.  Don’t get me wrong, it’s good and quite well-crafted, but my expectations were incredibly high and they simply weren’t met.  And drinking this 7.5% beer on the heels of St. Bernardus just made it seem overly weak, like I was throwing back Coors Light.

I’m still excited to try further Lost Abbeys though, but I won’t concern myself with that future.  I got better things to do now.


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