The summer swelter swirls and sworls around us, and we seek piney shadows to protect our sanity in the heat of early DC June. Though we are hot and huddled, the dogs sense our Friday energy and are less lethargic today than previous days this wilting long week. Something about a Monday holiday seems to compress all the work and worry into a tightly bound ball of four-day frantic. Evidence of this work squeeze lay strewn on the grass of Dog Hill. I arrived to find a couple of our Happy Hour stalwarts in mid-swig, the crushed remains of their work lying dented on the grass like old civil war ironside vessels. What had come before me were a Yuengling can, P.A in disarray, smashed as, perhaps, we would be heading if not careful on this night of release! Alongside like a mated shoe lay the remains of a Dale's Pale Ale, one of the finer brews one can find in a can; Oskar Blues's Colorado entrant into the aluminum dispensing business and a fair sight better than the pantheon of cans I consumed in college.
We decided to jazz up the mix, and brought out North Coast Brewing's Brother Theloneous Abbey Ale. This is a fine, balanced abbey rendition, not too heavy on sweet malt; and so much the better for it on a hot day. Brother Monk satisfied all around and was a hearty welcome before infusions of hops to come.
Making a return yet again was Weyerbacher's Double Simcoe IPA. This one, as has been noted, is a pefectly blended IPA. The hops are pronounced in their bitter, but not at all mediciny. Once again, the Double did us right in delight and we drank our way to the next offering.
It was monkey business all around for the final round, a Victory dance from Pennsylvania; more than most of the local sports team have to offer lately. Hops features prominently in this brew, but it lacked the balance of the Double Simcoe. No matter, we decided, as our day had the perfect balanced ending: the stresses of work gave way to a palate of play, and we gave ourselves gladly over to the weekend.