Doctor Duvel

I'm like a sommelier, but for beer.

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Location: Upstate New York, United States

Favorite Beers: Orval, Samuel Smith, Duvel, Hennepin, Oude Gueze, Chimay, Dogfish Head, Anchor Steam, and anything made by Trappist monks.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

BBLT and a brewery update

Beer and BLT's. Can you do any better?

I just had a glorious BLT accompanied by my Hopsy Bier, a 1388 hoppy pale ale.

The beer is a perfect complement, slashing through the unctuous richness of the sandwich. You have to make your own mayo (I use Alton Brown's recipe). You need good bacon and bread with some taste and enough crust to stand up to the abuse it will take. You need good, crispy Romaine lettuce. You need, most of all, abundant, big, fat, juicy, thick slabs of the best goddamned heirloom tomatoes money can buy. Or in my case, ones that a wonderful professorial colleague up and gave me. This particular sandwich was on a whole wheat Italian bread with wonderful, firm, sweet yellow brandywines and this awesome, deep red, almost purple, meaty, firm-fleshed tomato of unknown origin. A boxcar Willie maybe?? Purple Cherokee also works. I like to have a plate of sweet 100 cherry tomatoes nearby so I can stud my sandwich with additional little fruit-based orgasms as I go. Feel free to lick your fingers and arms. Generally to be eaten only with people you are sleeping with. I mean, with whom you are sleeping.

Anyway, as you're gorging on the fantastic chaos of fatty, salty, tart, sweet, crunchy, juicy, savory, crispy, gooey insanity, you drink a nice, dry, hoppy beer (Orval is always great) and it just cuts right through it, cleanses your palate, and refreshes your nerve centers with that high, airy, floral hop aroma. Possibly my single favorite food experience in the world.

If you care about food and beer and love life, make yourself a BLT while tomato season is in full swing and pair it up with a great pale ale, IPA, legitimate pilsner, or Belgian Saison. Do it. Now. If you're a vegetarian, tough shit! No, actually, that's not fair. Substitute goat cheese, or a smoked mozzarella or something. You might wind up needing to replace the mayo with a vinaigrette of some kind, but it'll still be a great sandwich. Fuck it.

Brewery update:

After a bottling spree (Lambic, Spruce Porter, Black Saison, Belgian Singel), I brewed a Belgian Tripel. Gotta make a couple more Belgians while the weather is warm. I also just flung together my next generation of draft beers: M.C.'s Pekoe Pale, Sugar Notch Brown Ale, All-Summit IPA, and, in a day or so, "I'm Finishin' my Coffee" Stout.

The world seems OK. It really does.