Monthly Archives: December 2019

Homebrew: art that is destroyed by experiencing it

For Thanksgiving 2013, I brewed my first Biere de Garde, after discovering the style and then reading Garrett Oliver’s suggestion that it’s the perfect pairing for the holiday feast. My brew was a hit. At Thanksgiving 2019, we drank the final bottle from that batch.

Friday we drank another final bottle that had been lurking in my cellar, an Eisbock brewed in 2013. Even as many obscure beer styles are pioneered or revitalized in the homebrewing community and then are taken to the public by mainstream craft breweries, Eisbock remains relatively unknown. I expect this is due to the fact that freeze-concentrating beer, at a production scale, would require specialized equipment that most breweries won’t acquire.

Then yesterday we drank the final bottle of a 2011 smoked porter (excellent) and one of the last few of a 2015 smoked porter (one-dimensional).

It may be a stretch to call homebrew art; I see it as more of a craft. Art or craft, it’s something that can only be experienced a finite number of times. The act of tasting it simultaneously depletes it.

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