I'm doing this all backwards. Or at least not in the right order. Just letting you know.
The Tuesday of my holiday was an exciting day. One I'd long awaited. A chance to try East India Porter. Someting I've dreamt of since I was a child. Ok, maybe not quite that long. For a couple of years. Since I finally twigged what EI stood for.
The release of the third beer in the Pretty Things Once Upon a Time series, 1855 Barclay Perkins East India Porter, was timed to coincide with my holiday. Boston being a bit too far from Washington, I was pencilled in for the second launch in New York. Held at the Rye House on 17th Street.
I arrived with just enough time to dump my bag at the hotel before moseying on down to Rye. It was packed. At first I thought it was just the after-work yuppie crowd. I was wrong. They were there to try the beer. Bit of a shock, that. Pleasing, but still a shock.
Dann soon pressed a glass of EIP into my hand, drawn from a pin on the bar. The beer didn't disappoint. There was the distinctive, roasty taste of brown malt that hovers in the space between cocoa, coffee and chocolate. And hops. Lots of those. And a stack of bitterness, piled up almost to the ceiling. A few more glasses threw themselves with unseemly haste down my throat.
"Take as many bottles as you want." Dann said the next day. How many could I comfortably carry? Seven seemed like a good number. Lucky for some. Lucky for me.
The formative beers of my teenage years - My teenage beer drinking involved plenty of quantity – I was a regular pub customer from 16 onwards, pubs being the place to meet my mates, and girls – but...
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