Beer Break Vol. 2, No. 42
From your beer wish lists
Aug. 22, 2002
A while back we began asking readers what beers are on their wish list. These
are beers that are special because we have tasted them perhaps once or maybe
never at all. Often they are beers that we've heard others rave about or that
are praised in print. That may be because they are not sold where we live or
because they seem too expensive (though practically speaking, a bottle of
beer is never going to be as far out of our price range as a rare bottle of
wine or spirits). And then there are beers we've heard about, or even tasted,
that are no longer brewed.
Eldridge Pope - Royal Oak
(No longer brewed)
"My favourite beer in all of England! A unique fruity flavour with a
delicious aftertaste - heaven in a glass! Sadly it is no longer being made.
Courage bought the brewery & slowly replaced the Eldridge Pope brands with
their own. A travesty betraying brewing talent, taste, tradition, integrity &
honour. For Shame!!! Eldridge Pope R.I.P. - you are deeply missed my
- Mark D. Stevens
(No longer brewed)
"I still have quite a few bottles but I cannot imagine a better summer beer.
It ages well but I do not think my remaining stash will last until next year.
The combination of sweet and sour is most divine and it takes a well-versed
drinker not to take a sip then splash the rest of the beer against the back
of your throat in an uncontrolled frenzy. Hot weather has met (or should say
"did meet") its match."
- Derek Zomonski
Burning River Pale Ale
(From Great Lakes Brewing Co. in Cleveland)
"All around best Pale Ale out there. Just not sold outside of Ohio so I
stock up on a case every time I visit."
- Don Hamilton
Stone Vertical Epic 2001
(From Stone Brewing in California)
"I've only heard rumors as to this beer's taste. Was not able to obtain as
the number of cases sold was minuscule."
Longshot Hazelnut Brown Ale
(Boston Beer briefly brewed the Longshot beers from recipes in a homebrew
"Long off the market... I still have memories of my last one at Virgil's BBQ
in Time Square New York. I sometimes call friends to recollect drinking the
beer. We have decided it was the perfect 'special' beer. I believe Heaven is
a place where everything you ever lost is returned to you. My heaven would
contain a never ending supply of LHB Ale."
- Kevin Bowman
Ipswich Ale! Ipswich Ale! Ipswich Ale!!!
(Brewed by Ipswich Brewing Co. in Massachusetts)
"I fell in love the second my lips touched it; but it's only available in two
lousy New England states. Due to a horrible oversight, I didn't try to bring
any home with me ('Oh, I'll find some back home!') and, now, I'm in misery."
Bob's First Ale - Magic Hat
(Brewed at Magic Hat Brewing Co. in Vermont)
"The original Magic Hat brew and still the best. But with so many other
excellent MH offerings it's almost impossible to even find it in a bottle
anymore let alone on tap. Now that I live in Florida and only return to VT on
rare occasions, it's even more heartbreaking when I can't find it, since I
can' get it at all down here."
- Walt Schwarz
Hang Ten Porter
(Brewed at the Hang Ten brewpub in San Diego, which has closed)
"It was the best tasting beer. They closed the place down though. I still
walk by where the brewpub used to be and it is so sad. There is a seafood
resturant there now."
Ballantine Burton Ale
(The brand is owned by Pabst, but Ballantine is brewed to a different recipe
and Burton isn't made)
"These were aged Burton style ales made by Ballantine only for their
distributors, from around 1936-1951. Supposedly they can age a long time, and
are occasionally found in dusty bar cellars or warehouses. I have a friend
who has a bottle he inherited from a collector, still full, but it's been so
mishandled and lightstruck it's probably quite damaged. Nevertheless, I told
him if he ever opens it, I want to be there to try, just to see what it might
be like after all these years."
- Marc Gaspard
Alaskan Smoked Porter
(Brewed by Alaskan Brewing in Alaska)
"I'm starting to think it's a yeti-for all the legends, I've never laid eyes
(Perhaps no longer brewed)
"I'd like to find a beer that tastes like the first beer I ever tasted,
Detroit, age 10, circa 1942. Probably Stroh's or Schlitz (both of which have
changed, a lot, over the years. I suppose that I have changed, also . . .) It
was bitter . . . and I didn't much care for it, then. But I remember the
taste, and have never been able to match it. Any thoughts?"
- Brayton Harris
And, for a little perspective on pining for long lost beers, Alexender
Mitchel of Baltimore wrote:
"My comments don't fit on the form.
"Certainly, I could wish for samples of some of the legends of beer, and
Ballantine IPA might be way up at the top simply because of its mystical,
epic stature -- which may well die off when the last of the people that drank
it fresh die off. Or for an original London Porter from the nineteenth
century, or a wooden cask of braggot from medieval days.
"But face it -- we are now in nirvana. For every long-gone Ballantine IPA,
there are now ten even more esoteric and wonderful beers -- Sam Adams Triple
Bock, Anchor Our Special Ale, George Gale Prize Old Ale, Dogfish Head Midas
Touch and Raison d'Etre and 90-Minute IPA, Goose Island Icarus Barleywine,
New Glarus Wisconsin Belgian Red ... the list goes on and on.
"Transportation and communications being what they are now, we can now have
beer stores with 500 beers on the shelves, a beer festival with a thousand
beers to choose from, esoteric beers from Scotland and Slovakia shipped to
our shores, and enough beer fanatics to make them all viable. And somewhere
along the line we'll have beer fans dying off with cellars full of the
legendary beers of today, ready to break out for the wake.
"Nope, sorry. I'll be perfectly happy with what rolls off the shelves and
truck right now, thank you.
"[Although if someone wants to reproduce the legendary Ballantine IPA for
modern drinkers, don't let me stop them!!]"
Both from the Celebrator Beer News Blind Tasting Panel
ST. BRIDGID'S PORTER
Brewed by Great Divide Brewing Co. in Colorado
Strong aromas of vanilla with a subtle roast coffee and milk chocolate.
Creamy vanilla flavor and a sweet and sour finish. This will be spanking good
with the right food pairing, such as oyster or sweet, milder barbecue.
Brewed by Fuller's in England
Starts with inviting aromas of coffee, chocolate and honey. Well balanced,
with rich chocolate flavors, hints of nuts and smoky goodness and a dry