Rodenbach Grand Cru

May 30, 2012

Rodenbach Grand Cru

We’re finally here.  It’s taken us months of hard work and enough money to finance a small nation’s new infrastructure, but The Hopjacks Filling Station is up and running.

As you may have inferred from reading the Beer Garden all this time, I’m a bit of a dork when it comes to ale and lager.  Therefore, much of what we’re going to focus on in our new store will be very thoughtfully selected.  For the time being, The Filling Station will have a boutique feel of, mainly, personally-chosen flavors; both beer and wine.  Basically, I’m going out of my way to bring Pensacola some killer beer.

Don’t get me wrong.  There are a couple of stores in our area that already have some of what I’m selling.  Where The Filling Station is going to really shine is my gorgeous new tap wall.  I have the opportunity to pour beer no one else is pouring from New Orleans to Jacksonville.  We’re also giving a number of options to our guests when it comes to deciding how they’d like to drink their drink.

Sample a draft before committing to the purchase?  Sure, we’ve always done that in Hopjacks.  Looking for a full beer poured into the proper glass?  We’ve got that, too.  If you like that single bottle in the display cooler, then go ahead and take it.  Care for a growler of draft or mix and match six-packs and cases to go?

Then there’re beer flights.  Just like wine flights (which we’ll have as we grow into our shoes a little), you’ll get four 3-oz samples that either showcase individual styles or are simply some you’d like to have at random.  Oh, and if you’re feeling a little peckish, you can go after any of the snacks we’ve got whether it’s stinky cheese or odd-ball sausage like pheasant-cognac.

I don’t know about you, but I feel like celebrating with a truly world-class beer.  It’s not on tap yet so I’ll have to “settle” for opening up a bottle of Rodenbach Grand Cru.  It’s a classic Belgian that’s an oak vat-aged mixture of young ale and 2-year-old ale.  The beer is then re-fermented in the bottle for additional body and flavor.  Grand Cru is Flemish sour ale that’s cocoa brown with ruby highlights and a towering head.  Tart scents of cherry, red apple skin and berries hide a hint of vanilla.  Even more cherry shows up in the palate with ample caramel malt, dried fruit and vinous notes.  Yeasty and robust, Rodenbach finishes crisp with a lambic-like sourness.

Yep, gonna taste real nice with some of that salty English Stilton cheese and Spanish Serrano ham we’ve got there.  I must admit, I love my job.