Breweries "Visited"

Monday, July 23, 2012

Beer 226: Of Legends and Giants and Hollowed Out Souls

I'm going to dump all the Penn State, NCAA, JoePa, child abuse, scandal and football thoughts I have on you. It's going to be disjointed and I'm going to offend someone. I'm not going to say keep the victims in your thoughts at this difficult time because they aren't in mine. I barely think about the victims. I'm not going to write that I don't care about them. They just aren't among the things I get passionate about. Kind of like the plight of aborigines in Australia or the citizens of Iraq.

I'm not a JoePa loyalist, but I am a Penn State loyalist. I'm horrified that the Sandusky incidents were ignored, set aside, brushed under the rug or deemed dealt with. That sucks. All of that nonsense has led to the gutting of Penn State's athletic program and I can feel it in my soul. There is no way to separate feelings about football weekends, sports rivalries and excellent tailgates from my memories of college. Academics and athletics are forever woven together in my mind and heart, which is probably why I can't seem to shake this hollowed out feeling.

For so long Joe Paterno ran a clean program. It gave many of us license to think, say, write, "You don't see that shit happening at Penn State" when referencing scandals at Ohio State, Miami or USC. What would we all give to have a gold pants saga? But Joe wasn't perfect and he was an old man set in his ways. He would discipline his athletes the way he saw fit. There's no reason to play it all out in the public eye. That's unfortunate because things would be a lot different right now if he didn't have such a singular focus, if he would have picked his head up and asked questions.

And oh we're in the public eye now. I'm saddened because there hasn't been a thorough investigation outside of Sandusky's trial. Don't cite the Freeh report. That is the furthest thing from an independent or criminal investigation. We may never know the truth.

But let's go ahead anyway and try to destroy the football program at Penn State. Let's punish the current and future student athletes -- and not just football players...let's do something that penalizes all the student athletes, local businesses, and all of our opponents. Let's take $60 million and create an endowment to fund programs for the detection, prevention and treatment of child abuse.

Does a human being need to be taught how to detect and prevent child abuse? I don't think so. I'm pretty sure that comes along with being a decent human being. Perhaps if we all picked up our heads from our iPhones, Blackberries and Androids, we might notice what is going on around us. Perhaps if the country wasn't so eager to sue one another, people wouldn't turn a blind eye or they would ask questions.

So yes, today we tore down giants and kicked dead legends. I hope everyone feels satisfied. I, for one, sure as hell don't.


And now for the beer part of my rant. It is quite befitting of today's post. It's the tripel from Brasserie des Geants, which is brewed in the medieval castle of Irchonwelz in Belgium.
At 9% ABV, it will certainly help you forget about a day like today.

It is unpastuerized, unfiltered and bottle refermented. It poured a golden liquid with a full white head. It was very bubbly. The smell was orange and banana and a bit chalky. The taste is very malt forward with a very apparent alcohol content. It was also peppery with lots of zesty citrus and a full mouthfeel.

The brasserie is housed in a castle in the town of Irchonwelz in the French speaking south of Belgium. Its majestic gate stands high to allow the passage of the occasional visiting the town is famous for its annual giants parade.

I guess Penn State doesn't have to worry about giants and legends for a long time.



  1. Couldn't have verbalized my feelings any better than this...See you in the Valley this fall.

  2. That was brilliant, Marci! See you on Saturday.