Latest Libations: 6th Edition

Good morning! I've got a cup of coffee, and I'm ready to get the new week started...well, not in a big hurry, but you catch my drift. I realized the other day that I've been taking pictures of all the fine brews I've had lately, but that I haven't made any of them into a post yet. Today, then, I'm going to share some of them with you.

First up, Battered Boar Brewing Co.'s Coconut Cream Stout. This was actually a beer I had when I was visiting my mom in Arkansas. We went to Bricktown Brewery where I indulged in their Blueberry Ale, but I also had this delightful brew you see here. Almost like a dessert, this dark and creamy stout was enhanced by coconut and vanilla. Incredibly tasty, I would definitely recommend this to anyone.

Good old Shiner. I toured the brewery years ago, before I had kids, and they only made Shiner Bock, Shiner Blonde, and a few seasonal brews. Now, they've been bought out by Budweiser and they made more mainstream brews. I find it rather sad, but it is what it is. This beer is okay. It's decent enough to drink on a hot day when you'd rather have something other than a grandpa beer.

Whenever I hike over at Hitchcock Nature Center, I make sure to stop by the Loess Hills Vineyard on my way home. This little winery only stocks about four to five kinds of wine at a time, typically, and while this one is a table wine, I enjoy it. It's sweet, light, and good for sipping on. We drank the whole bottle that night!

I have to say, everytime I've had a Zip Line Brewing beer, I've enjoyed it. This one was no different. It's no secret that I enjoy some fruit, citrus, or some other lovely seasoning, brewed into ales. I find them enhanced by natural flavors, and they give it a little extra bit of something. This yummy ale has been brewed with a bit of lemon, and it tastes light and refreshing while avoiding the temptation to be sweet.

Traveler's makes fru-fru sweet beers, and sometimes I enjoy that. I especially enjoy these interspersed with dark brews to help balance things out. As far as shandies go, you can't do much better than Traveler's. They make a variety of them, and the Grapefruit one is one of my favorites.

Empyrean is another local brewery whose beers I enjoy on occasion. They've jumped on the fruit band wagon, this time with Peachy Keen Ale. As the name implies, it's got a hint of peach flavor, which is new as I haven't seen any other brews with that yet. And it stays away from the sweet, which is what I prefer. I like the accentuated flavors without adding the sweet. If you're talking a shandy, yes, it should be sweet, but if you're talking flavored ales, stay away from the sugar!

Here's another Empyrean brew that I enjoyed at a different time. This one is Luna Sea ESB. If you're unfamiliar with ESB, it's English Special Bitter. It's really an English-style pale ale, but it has a bitter aftertaste. Empyrean's Luna Sea is a good beer, period.


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