Beer Month Day 1: Glissade


Welcome to Operation Monthly!  For an explanation of what this blog is about check out the About Monthly page.  I'm excited to get this blog started.  The idea for the blog was inspired by movies like Super Size Me and these people.  We haven't worked out what each month's "operation" is going to be yet but I think we have a plan for May.  More on that later.

April is here and we've declared it Beer Month!  Stephanie and I will try a different beer every day in April.  When we decided on this I went through our fridge and cellar (basement) and found that we already had half the months beer on hand.  We went shopping for the rest at Chico Natural Foods and Mangrove Bottle Shop.  I think we came up with a very interesting mix of craft brews and imports.  A friend once told me: "A beer connoisseur will drink a Coors if it's the only beer available.  A beer snob would rather go thirsty."  Put me squarely in the snob category.  If a beer isn't a least somewhat flavorful I would rather not bother with it.  I'm confident that I'll be able to appreciate, if not thoroughly enjoy, almost all of the beers we selected.

Beer month got off to a slow start with us not getting around to drinking the day's beer until 11:00 PM.  April 1st brought us Sierra Nevada's 2010 Gilssade.  This is Sierra Nevada's most recent seasonal release.  We decided to kick the month off with the this beer because there are a few beers from Sierra Nevada in our stockpile and we want to space them out.  Glissade is a Golden Bock style beer.  From Wikipedia's article on Bock:
Bock is a type of strong lager beer, first brewed in the 14th century in the Hanseatic town of Einbeck, Germany, from which it gets its name (originally "Einbeck" / "Einbock"). The original Bocks were dark beers, brewed from high-colored malts. Modern Bocks can be dark, amber or pale in color. Bock was traditionally brewed for special occasions, often religious festivals such as Christmas, Easter or Lent.

Bocks have a long history of being brewed and consumed by Roman Catholic monks in Germany. During the spring religious season of Lent, monks were required to fast. High-gravity Bock beers are higher in food energy and nutrients than lighter lagers, thus providing sustenance during this period. Similar high-gravity Lenten beers of various styles were brewed by Monks in other lands as well.
Sounds appropriate for a Spring release. I've had Glissade a couple times since its release earlier this year but I don't have much experience with Bocks in general.  They are definitely not my favorite style as I prefer my IBUs upwards of the Pale Ale range.

I don't usually drink beer immediately before going to bed and I had work early the next morning so the Glissade was poured with some trepidation.  It poured a light golden color with minimal head.  We sat down with our beers and found a April Fools Day Mel Brooks marathon on TV.  As Gene Wilder and company shot up the old west in Blazing Saddles we sipped on our Glissades.  It had a light and smooth body with a somewhat disproportionate alcoholic bite.  Despite the 6.4% ABV Glissade is still refreshing.  This beer has a lot less hops than much of Sierra Nevada's lineup, instead relying on malts for much of the flavor.  The Glissade bottle read:
Glissade is remarkedly mellow, sliding across the palate with layers of subtle malt flavor balanced by a touch of delicate European hops.
While I enjoyed this beer I don't see myself drinking it very often.  While flavorful for such a light beer it isn't robust enough for my taste, but it may be a bit too strong for a hot summer day or session beer.  This beer replaced Early Spring Beer (ESB) in Sierra Nevada's seasonal lineup.  I vote for returning to ESB or trying something new next year.

Having a beer before bed cuddled up on the couch with my lovely wife was very relaxing.  I am optimistic that beer month will be very enjoyable.  I leave you until the next beer with these words from Blazing Saddles: "Mongo only pawn in game of life."

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