Good pubs, Good Beer, Good People

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Check Out Those Gunns

It's always good to have one of my cubs come home unexpectedly. And it's even better when he comes bearing gifts--like beer. Kaz and buddy Rob, collaborating on a film project about beer appreciation, showed up to shoot the last segments of their effort. They crossed my threshold, each bearing a bottle of Innis and Gunn Beer from Edinborough, Scotland. (Ah, the lads know the path to the PubScout's heart, for sure.)

We shared a bomber of Mad Elf (just to set the mood) and eventually had some dinner after the shoot. The missus' outstanding NushKumShmush (my favorite) was accompanied by some San Tan (AZ) Hop Shock IPA, and then it was time for dessert.

We decided to try the G&I Highland Cask, a beer aged in malt whisky oak casks--single malt, 18 years-old-- for 71 days.

A very pretty beer, its nose was redolent with oaky, woody notes and yielded some vanilla as well. In mouthfeel, it was medium bodied, but very smooth and silkier than it looked. The taste was exceptional and the finish malty.

It would make a fine dessert beer by itself, but the missus produced a loaf of her classic banana bread, and the pairing was exceptional. As Rob put it, "They complemented each other, making each different and better than it had been alone."

The kid, who's just taken the plunge into craft beer, is learning his lessons well, I'd say.

Because they had to drive back to school, I did not open the second bottle, which was Innis & Gunn's Original. Also oak-aged, it claims to be a "honey-hued beer with aromas of vanilla and toffee, and a malty, lightly oaked finish."

We'll see. I'd like to keep this baby around until Christmas, but if its brother is any indication, it probably won't make it that long.

Especially if the banana bread is still here tomorrow.

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