Saturday, December 5, 2009

Lhasa Beer - Saturday, Dec. 5th

I am, at heart, a philanthropic man. I may come across as a bitter and jaded alcoholic but deep down I really care about people. You can think of me like Marv from Sin City. Tough and grizzled on the outside, a big pushover on the inside. Normally my favorite philanthropic event is stuffing about $10 worth of change into the Salvation Army buckets over the course of the Christmas season. It's not much but I do my best. However, it came to my attention the other day that there is a way for me to do my favorite thing in the world (drink) while doing my good deed for the week. This comes in the form of Lhasa Beer.

I kinda love Tibet by extension. Frankly, they are the home of some of the coolest people in the world: Tibetan monks. My home being rather close to Woodstock, NY, I've met and talked to my fair share of Tibetan monks. They are...unequivocally...the most awesome people in the world. I'd love to have a cup of tea and chat with them. They're really kind, generous, and interesting people. The stories about where they came from before they went to religion are often tumultuous but in the end they always come to find peace within themselves. And, fuck, even if there are only a few of them in the country, I HAVE to love them. And from what I've heard, the Tibetan people are cool as shit and have to deal with a lot of crap. So I feel for them.

Lhasa beer is a way to help out Tibetans and cop a sweet buzz. The main man, James Casilio, was kind enough to send me two bottles to review and here she be. A pilsner/pale ale like beer brewed in Tibet and imported, 10% of all proceeds from its sale go right back to Tibetan charities. This. Is. Amazing. And, to's a pretty good beer too:

Pours a crystal clear, golden color with a one finger, snow white head. The color is really gorgeous; a very rich, deep molten gold color.

The aroma of pale malt and hops peeks through. Not very complex but pleasant. Slightly floral, like a springtime garden, with a nice waft of a hoppy spiciness to it as well.

The taste is rich honey followed by bitter pine. The spiciness in the nose pulls through, like cardamom and black pepper. It isn't as balanced between the bitter hops and malt as I'd like, but its really thirst quenching. The more I think about it, this is like a pils/ESB kinda beer. Extremely refreshing and highly quaffable. And it's a damn good cause.

So, in short: request this beer. It is a very solid beer (brewed with Tibetan barley and spring water and Saaz hops) and not only is it easy to drink and tasty, it donates to a good cause to boot. Go buy it.

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