While perusing my blogroll the last day or so, I couldn’t help but notice that on another of the beer-related blogs I read, the Beer and Whiskey Brothers, one of the imbibing brothers (Don, if you’re curious) described a special holiday event he’ll be attending this year. It’s called an "ungettables" gathering, which loosely described, is an event where a group of craft beer lovers each brings a bottle of something not easily accessible in the local market. Everyone then shares the bounty of rareness.
This idea actually got me to thinking about the "Tasting of the Ambers" we did at Tom and Carla’s last year. Sure, we started by comparing the various amber lagers and ales, but I seem to recall, vaguely, (come on, that was like a year ago) that as the evening wore on, a few special bottles appeared for sharing.
Everyone likes sharing.
Well, except me. I mean, sure, I love sharing when other people want to share with me, but, um, I’m not very helpful when the time comes to share with others.
Now, before I start getting angry emails and vitriolic comments, and am made to suffer the harsh judgment of a collective "TSK!" from the entire craft beer scene in Cincinnati (and beyond), let me explain. I’m not suggesting that when it comes to rare, special beers, I’m the equivalent of a 3 year-old at the first day of preschool. I’m not going to start screaming, "My beer! My BEER! MY BEER!" while doing a rolling, full-body floor-tantrum. And no, I don’t squirrel away my special acquisitions beneath a loose floorboard, growling at the family pets if they come sniffing about.
I’m happy to share, I swear. At least, I would be, if I ever had anything to share.
That’s not to say I don’t lay my hands on the occasionally coveted brew. Obviously, I do pick up the unusual one whenever I can. The problem is that in order to share them with others as described above, you generally have to hold on to them for, say, more than 48 hours. And that, ladies and gentleman, is why I don’t share well.
See, Tom and Carla, and most of the other craft beer lovers I’ve ever met have a stash: a storage spot where they deposit the "good stuff" for special occasion. In some cases, that’s just the back corner of the fridge where the tasty morsels stay out-of-sight and out-of-mind.
I don’t, and what’s worse, I can’t make it work. Believe me, I’ve tried.
The fundamental problem is that, at heart, I’m always going to be that over-excitable little kid from Christmas morning. In fact, I was that over-excitable little kid every Christmas. My mother will no doubt give signed affidavits to the effect that I was always the first one tugging at my parent’s blankets as soon as I thought Santa was likely gone, long before the sun came up. And even as normal people grow out of such behavior, I clung to it, frankly until a altogether inappropriate age.
So, while I’ve finally come to appreciate getting some decent sleep on Christmas morning—just in time for my own kids to roust me from bed at a ridiculous hour—the excitable impatience lives on in me still. But instead of toys under the tree, nowadays I get all worked up about having a special beer in the fridge.
Which is why those special bottles rarely make it through a night.
Do have something a little special squirreled away for a special event? What’s hidden, well-protected, in the deep dark corners of your beer storage?
Leave a comment and let us know. Maybe we can arrange something.
I’ll bring, um, some brownies.