Pensacon Weekend is upon us once again! Hats off in advance to Mike Ensley for pulling off another successful, fun, entertaining and enlightening convention. He and his staff go far above and beyond what many in this town envision they do which is why Pensacon has in 3 short years garnered a reputation among the genre community of being one of the best.
It’s quite an accomplishment, you know, bringing together a community and providing a unique experience. And the individual sub-groups all get along! Nerd unity! The Star Wars folks are hanging out with the Star Trek folks, Lord of the Rings people are spending time with the Power Rangers gangs, anime enthusiasts are trading costume tips with the comic book crowd…
Except for the Furries. No one wants the Furries.
No, I kid. Seriously, though… Cosplayers, you all look amazing – especially you, lady version of Captain America! Call me! – and you’ve put so much into your outfit, but it seems highly inconvenient to unbuckle a full-bodied Transformers armor when nature comes a’calling. I’m not concerned with the Furries, though. They can go in their costumes for all I care. I’m kidding, I’m kidding! There’s a litter box, right over there.
Genre conventions are fans’ opportunities to let their freak flags fly, as it were. Outside of the occasional occasion there aren’t many chances – nor would it be generally appropriate – to pour oneself into that ultra-realistic Deadpool outfit or Batman suit. Yes, Grandma really did love you but her funeral just isn’t the place to cosplay.
See, I’m a beer nerd. With my job every day is Pensacon! I’m tasked with tracking down the rare, the new and the best that breweries have to offer. Beer nerds have their preferred sub-genres just like cosplayers, too; IPA nerds, sour nerds, stout nerds, Belgian nerds. Some of the beers I nerd out about the most are the ones that, like Pensacon, can bring the tribes together.
I have a friend, also named Tim, who loves his hoppy beer, also like this Tim, but hasn’t been a fan of Back Forty Brewing, unlike the royal we Tim.
Lebowski nerds will get that last joke. Moving on.
He does appreciate some funky, sour ale from time to time. You should have seen the look of “What’s this?!” when I handed him a sample the other day. I just tapped a really rare keg of Back Forty Freckle Belly IPA that has been aged in Cabernet Sauvignon barrels.
After spending a year in the wine barrels, Brew Master Tim Blevins transferred the beer back to the fermenter and dry-hopped with Amarillo hops. Interestingly enough, there’s almost zero color transfer from the contact with the wine-soaked oak. Instead, this one has a pretty orange-gold glow topped with a fluffy head. The nose gives off definite Cabernet notes with cedar, cassis and violets present. The flavor’s what’s gonna getcha! Wow! Where’d the IPA go? Starts off vinous but then I’m getting chocolate Teddy Grahams and soft cinnamon that goes into a very long finish after tones of caramel malt, toffee and preserved orange peel have all had their say. The finish is bone dry and very memorable.
Come see us for a truly geek-worthy Back Forty and have a great Pensacon weekend, everyone!