What do you do when you're quarantined with a newborn in Austin, Texas? You drink beer. And a lot of it. Responsibly, of course. Can you imagine being stuck inside with a gnarly hangover and a two-month old child? Yeah, I'm not trying to experience that.
In all seriousness, I've meant to, like everything about this damn blog, begin publishing some amateur, informal, baseball-themed beer reviews. So, I wanted to, in honor of it finally being consistently canned for purchase, begin with one of my favorite beers now and forever.
Before we get to the beer, I've chosen to apply the 20-80 baseball scouting scale to aspects of each beer. If you're unfamiliar with the 20-80 scale, former scout and current MLB Insider Kiley McDaniel did a great job of explaining in at Fangraphs.com years ago. Basically, 20 is the worst and 80 is elite; and when I say "elite," understand assigning any tool (hit, field, throw, power, fastball, command, etc.) or any overall player grade of an 80 is extremely rare. Major League Baseball is filled with 40-60 players and 40-60 tools; most scouting systems would classify a 60-65 as an All-Star, and it improves from there.
Get the point? Cool. Let's booze.
Beer Review No. 1: Electric Jellyfish (Pinthouse Pizza; Austin, Texas)
Awesome amateur photo from my kitchen and its weird tile.
Description from the website: "Brewed with some of our favorite new hop varieties from our favorite hop farmers - Citra, Simcoe, Chinook, Ekuanot, Azacca, and Galaxy. Electric Jellyfish is filled with a bright tropical citrus character along with notes of orange, mango, lychee, and a floral backbone. The Jellyfish is a hazy new school IPA focusing on the juicy hop flavor and aroma while keeping the bitterness balanced and refreshing."
Appearance: It's a Hazy IPA that looks like a Hazy IPA. Easy enough. There are hazier beers out there, but Jellyfish, despite some brightness, definitely gets the point across correctly.
Smell: Since this is the first such review, I should note I never quite understood the beer smell thing until I moved on from the world of crushing Miller Lites/Shiner Bocks with the occasional ale or IPA and actually appreciated the vibrant and awesome craft brew scene in Texas. I really like good bourbon. I smell that. I like wine too. Everyone smells that. So, why not good beer?
Anyway, Electric Jellyfish delivers some subtle fruit notes, like grapefruit, and a hint of sweetness.
Mouthfeel: Let's call it medium. Considering the style, it definitely has a bit of a smooth vibe to it; but it also doesn't shy away from offering a full feeling.
Drinkability: It's not the easiest-drinking Hazy IPA I've sampled, but if you're not careful, it disappears quick. Good balance of carbonation and hops to match the mouthfeel.
Taste: The smell doesn't fool. The grapefruit, orange, and citrus vibe is present in the taste as fruit notes arrive to the party early and deliver a delicious drink while the final call presents some bitterness and hoppy IPA punch to balance the fruit.
Photo courtesy of AP Images