They are speedy suckers and they live fast

My Oregon Craft Beer Month

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ask me all the time what my favorite beer is, says Lisa Morrison. always tell them it my next one. You know, because there always that anticipation.

I know what she means. We are perched side by side at the bar in the Green Dragon pub [928 SE 9th] staring down my sampler tray. For almost an hour now I been intensely focused on my palate, picking apart ale and lager to find their essence, looking over at Morrison Beer Goddess and host of It’s Beer o Clock on KXL AM750 seek clarification and more information ## ## . It an honest to goodness beer tasting, and yet it sounds more like an interrogation. It as if I captured the beer sneaking out of the de militarized zone and I trying to make it confess something:

Morrison lays it all out, nice and simple. Lagers are made with help from a slow, bottom fermenting yeast that takes its sweet time eating up the sugar from malted barley, producing alcohol. It also likes to dine in cooler temperatures. I imagine these yeasts are like the large, slow, bearded gentlemen who prefer hanging at the Holiday Ale Fest. They just taking their time, enjoying the chilly weather. No rush. Due to the amount of time it takes for this yeast to do its thing, it needs to be stored away in a store room, or if you are German.

Lager yeasts tend to produce a beer that is and It also tends to produce what Morrison referred to as a family of flavors. Lager styles include pilsners, helles, Bocks, and most other German styles.

Ale, I learn, is made from top fermenting yeast that enjoys eating in ambient temperatures around 68 to 70 degrees. In a way, this yeast is like those bicyclists you see on the summery deck of your local pub, hanging out in their jerseys and eating a lot of food fairly quickly. They are speedy suckers and they live fast. No need to wait around, they have places to go.

After going through the three lagers, I think I have grasped more fully that certain quality that I experienced in lagers throughout my life. It is a kind of roundness that is expressed in cheap domestics and craft brews alike, impossible to describe. But, what the hell? Why not try? It reminds me of building tunnels through hay bales stacked in a summer field, or the lazy lopping gate of a bum with one bad leg. I say it the quality of the freight train that likely injured that bum: It the smell of creosote and country weeds along the track and old steel and canvas sacks. It the calm hollow of air just behind the train as it parts the atmosphere. Awww hell its stale Tang in a rickety space capsule It Um, indescribable.

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