in Beer

Also known as Thomas Hooker Hop Meadow IPA and a sammich

This evening, after a quasi-vigorous workout, I started thinking. “Self,” I said, “With all of these calories you’ve been burning lately, soon I fear you will run out of calories. You need to go find yourself some new calories.”

Enter, my dinner:

You are looking at what is easily one of the best sandwiches on planet Earth. And a pickle. It is called Swifty’s Dream and you can get one of your own at Muss & Turner’s, which is located at the intersection of Atlanta Road and Cumberland Parkway. Here’s the description from their menu:

Pulled pork shoulder, slow smoked for hours, tossed in M&T’s Carolina style BBQ sauce. Served with spicy horseradish slaw and topped with apple wood smoked bacon on a kaiser roll.

The menu should just read, “Tits. On bread.” Pair it up with a bomber of beer and I can only think of a couple meals I would rather place into my face. And those meals all include beer, other sandwiches, and/or wings. So there you go.

And lets talk about that aforementioned bomber of beer. Thomas Hooker Ales & Lagers (an imprint of Hartford, Conecticut’s Troutbrook Brewing) recently hit the shores of Georgia. I tasted their Old Marley Barleywine a couple weeks ago. Tasty, indeed. I had heard good things about the Hop Meadow IPA, so I snatched up a couple bottles last week at Green’s.

Hop Meadow really makes me realize how inadequate certain aspects of the current beer categorization system is. Look at the picture of the Hop Meadow IPA above. What’s the first thing you notice? Exactly. There’s not very much P in this IPA is there? If this beer were entered into a competition under the IPA category (which I’m sure it has been), it would lose points right out of the gate for being too dark. From the BJCP American IPA guidelines:

Color ranges from medium gold to medium reddish copper; some versions can have an orange-ish tint. Should be clear, although unfiltered dry-hopped versions may be a bit hazy.

And here’s the thing: This is a really good beer. There’s a slightly coppery hop aroma, but I almost got more malt and corn sugar aroma than hops. The flavor, however, is all hops. The website boasts Chinook and Cascade. Wasn’t I JUST saying how the Chinook is quickly becoming my new favorite? (Hint: I was.) Big mouthfeel, good carbonation, a strong malt back bone, and a searing hop burn. In fact, the hops come on slowly and get steadily stonger for a few seconds, like a good habanero sauce.

My problem is that, as soon as I tasted Hop Meadow, I started fretting and complaining about how it crosses a couple different style borders. Just as quickly, I said to myself, I said, “Tony, what the hell is your problem? Less thinking, more drinking.”

So, yeah. Hop Meadow IPA = good. Beer styles = lame. Swifty’s dream = Boobs in a bread bra.

  1. You know, I thought that I actually knew a little something about good beer, but when I read what you say about it, I feel like I am at a wine tasting asking for a chardonnay.

    You are the beermaster.

    And tits on bread? Classic.

  2. Everything at M&T’s is the tits. The “Are You Kidding Me” sammy is double D fo sheezie!

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