Hey everybody! Anyone else already miss summer? Daylight Saving Time needs to die in the same way as how I feel right now. So! Let’s get right into a summer beer!
This Pint Sized Review is brought to you by an annual favorite of mine: Honey Lav by Blackrocks Brewery in Marquette, MI! This beer is made from local ingredients to the UP (that’s the Upper Peninsula of Michigan for you who suck at geography) including lavender and, you guessed it, honey.
Winnie the Pooh’s foray into the gangster life. 1948 (colourized).
Pouring this pale wheat ale, she actually pours amber-gold with a thick, foamy head all the way up the end of the glass. Beautiful. Like a bar of soap in the microwave on top of a jar of honey.
You’ll need to pick up that soap if you want to Keep It Clean.
Click that link. Go on. Show your mom.
The aroma is lavender all around. Like potpourri. I could pour a pint of this in the bathroom and it’ll smell like Abuela’s baño. It’s super overpowering as a scent, but I kinda love it.
This is no sipping beer. This is a beer you need to try to down the first pint of in one clean motion, and then have a second and third lined up. Oh my God. What a satisfying mouthfeel this has. It’s hard to describe it other than like filling your mouth with a can of happiness. Hah. Penis.
This probably represents all of you who don’t appreciate penis jokes. I understand. They’re hard. You probably feel shafted. That blows, man. This must be driving you nuts. I won’t whip any more out. No more dicking around.
There’s almost a lemon flavor to accompany the rest of the sensations. The lavender isn’t overstated, and the honey is just sweet enough without being candy. This tastes like how I imagine a field of grains looks after surviving a hurricane at sea: safe and satisfying and grounded.
The lavender does add some bitterness to cut the other flavors down a bit as it warms up, and the exhale provides something that isn’t unlike Bath and Bodyworks in spring.
Kate said, “I love Bath and Bodyworks!”
Our collection of candles agrees with this statement. Our house looks like the First Church of Yankee Candles.
For a summer beer, this is surprisingly full bodied. Most summery beers are super light and crisp, like a cracker made in two dimensions. Like, it’s technically there, but only conceptually. This screams, “YO. DRINK ME, MOTHERF*****, DON’T BE A BITCH” and you respond, “YES MA’AM!”
How Sammy L. J. plays the classic game, “Guess Who”
You slam the pint and say, “Thank you, may I have another.” So you have five more. At 5.2% you can make it happen.
Oh, God, Harry Potter is an alcoholic that makes booze disappear. Did he even taste that? At least he and Malfoy worked things out.
This is a fantastic beer for people who enjoy a full-bodied, full-flavored beer without the heaviness. You get the sweetness of a honey stick and the bitterness of the lavender and hops with the aroma of said lavender and the mouthfeel of wheat.
I recommend pairing this with cliff-jumping, nature, hammocks, and another beer to follow.
In all seriousness, this reminds me so much of home. Marquette, Michigan has a certain feel, an openness simultaneously obscured and oppressed by the most trees you’ve ever seen. A seemingly unending and undying nature driven by the winds and the water and the snow and the earth beneath your feet. The brilliant sunrises and sunsets, the clear skies at night and the air as fresh as the day the Earth was born. A lake that might as well be an ocean, and town that may as well be a bustling metropolis and a sleepy hollow of a village all at once. People that are at the same time standoffish and warm and welcoming and somehow family. They don’t mean to be rude, they just don’t like hugs until you pour a few for them. People that don’t judge you for who you are or where you’re from, they just want to be themselves and to show you the beauty that is their home.
Home is a funny thing, and it’s this beer that transports me back body and soul to that little house on Third Street that churns out the most fantastic brews I’ve ever had. Where I’ve spent countless nights playing countless songs after countless glasses of beer with countless friends old and new.
When I taste this beer, I taste more than honey, more than lavender, more than wheat and hops. I taste heart and soul and love and passion and pride. I taste what craft beer should taste like. It should taste like home.