August 5, 2013 by 250 Beers
International Beer Day 2013 (IBD) came and went last Friday, August 2nd. It’s an annual worldwide event that’s designed to unite planet earth in all things beer. It immediately follows IPA Day which is held on the first Thursday in August (which was last Thursday of course).
I can’t hide the fact that I had an IPA infused sore head on the morning of IBD. This was due to the fact that I’d been out on the evening of IPA Day…
I’d been to Tippler’s Tap for the launch of Bacchus Brewing‘s collaboration with Cassie Potts from What Beer To Drink. It was a passionfruit pilsner called Passion Potts (5.3%). En route, I’d swerved into Kerbside for an IPA and settled for a Bacchus Pug IPA (5.7%) which turned out to be a delicious grapefruity pit-stop. The taps at Tippler’s were appealing as usual so, after Cassie’s pilsner, I chose a Bacchus Coconut Porter (6.0%) then a 2013 Imperial Stout from Cavalier (10.0%) and then a Pernicious Weed (8.0%) which is a bloody good Imperial Pale Ale from Garage Project. When I got home, I flicked the TV on and started to watch the third test of the 2013 Ashes series accompanied by an Idiot IPA (8.5%) from Coronado Brewing and then a FIGJAM IPA (7.0%) from Burleigh Brewing.
Cracking open an 8.5% IPA at 10.30pm on a work night may not have been the best idea. Idiot.
Anyhow, hangover or no hangover, and seeing as though I embrace beer like a member of the family, I thought it might be fun to host some light-hearted IBD shenanigans in the office where I work.
My office houses eight people for the working day (seven blokes and one gal/chick/sheila/bird/female¹). I’d managed to syphon $10 from everybody – me included – a few days beforehand which enabled yours truly to go and spend $80 on 16 individual bottles of beer. The only proviso was that each bottle had to be from a different country thus providing a pile of 16 beers from around the world.
The plan was that we’d all end up with two beers each to slurp at the end of the day, the end of the working week, to celebrate IBD.
Now, as I said, it was intended as fun so I don’t want any followers of this blog or any casual readers to start criticising my choice of beers for IBD! There was only one retailer that was going to cope with such international beer demands and that was Dan Murphy’s. Plus, I was on a very small and tight budget as I only had an average of $5 to spend on each bottle. I had to go less than that on some and higher than that on others. Ok? So, please, no nasty jibes at the beer choices.
Sierra Nevada Torpedo IPA 7.2% (USA)
Leffe Radieuse 8.2% (Belgium)
La Trappe Blond 6.5% (Netherlands)
Monteith’s Barrel Aged Porter 6.5% (New Zealand)
Zywiec Original 5.6% (Poland)
Innis & Gunn Original 6.6% (Scotland)
Coopers Vintage 2013 7.5% (Australia)
Lowenbrau 5.2% (Germany)
Tsingtao 4.7% (China)
Kilkenny 4.3% (Republic of Ireland)
Budvar 5.0% (Czech Republic)
Menabrea 4.8% (Italy)
Mythos 4.7% (Greece)
Estrella Damm 4.6% (Spain)
Whistler Premium Lager 5.0% (Canada)
Hook Norton Haymaker Pale Ale 5.0% (England)
16 different countries. 16 different beers…and I came in under budget. I bought a bottle of something nice with the leftover change and that bottle of something nice was to make an appearance on IBD too. More on that in a minute.
I split the 16 beers into two pools. Pool A boasted eight beers with an alcohol content of 5.0% or less and Pool B had eight beers with anything over 5.0%. Having the two pools ensured that when everybody ‘picked out of the hat’ they could pick one randomly out of the Pool A hat and another randomly from the Pool B hat. It ensured that nobody got unlucky with two piss-week, shit beers whilst also preventing somebody walking away with two ‘big-boy’ beers.
Everybody picked two countries randomly out of the proverbial ‘hat’ (one from each pool) and grabbed their corresponding ‘winnings’ from the table. I ended up with the Innis & Gunn and the Menabrea.
I then challenged my seven colleagues with a question. The person with the closest answer would take home the bonus prizes – the bottle of something nice – a 640ml bottle of Mountain Goat’s Rare Breed Fancy Pants (5.2%) plus a copy of the 2013 Cider Guide (RRP $24.95). The question was ‘according to Wikipedia, what is the total population of the 16 countries represented here in front of you?’
Two came close to the answer of 2.05 billion people but one was closest with a response of 2 billion. Nice guess!
As I said, it was only a bit of fun. It stopped us all working for 15 minutes or so and enabled us to drink a few beers to round the week off.
Essentially, I had succeeded in uniting my office in beer despite some of them being poor!