Wow! One month down and still rockin’ along on the Year of Beer project! Today’s beer is Alaskan Brewing Company’s Freeride American Pale Ale. Although I miss the old label on the Pale Ale Alaskan used to brew (it was a kayak in the Mendenhall Glacial Lake), I like where the brewery is going with the extreme sports theme and the new recipe. I put a fat bike wheel behind this bottle and left out the glass because in Alaska we ride extreme bikes all winter long. We forgo glassware when out on the trail. This beer is depicted in the back of the Bicycle Shop, where this bike was getting finely tuned to hit the winter trails hard! Most cyclists love beer, which was proven at last year’s Trio Fat Bike Race and XC Ski Marathon where, according to Greg Mathis of Speedway Cycles, a major sponsor of the event, the cyclists consumed six times the brew of the skiers after the event. I propose a toast to going hard and getting out even when the trails are thick with snow! To living an extreme-sports lifestyle and hoping for freshies so every run is on fresh tracks!
Today’s Year of Beer painting is Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. This fine ale is a benchmark for quality, consistency, and positive influence in the community. If you drank Sierra Nevada’s beer 15 years ago, you had to be a “bitter beer lover”. Now with hop-heavy beers present in all corners of our country, this Pale Ale seems pleasantly balanced. This brewery was started by home-brewers Ken Grossman and Paul Camusi in 1980, which makes it one of the oldest craft breweries in the U.S. Located in Chico, California, with pioneering efforts in green sustainability, the brewery is now not only the sixth largest craft brewery in America, making over 786,000 barrels of beer a year, but was also voted “Green Business of the Year” by The United Stated Environmental Protection Agency in 2010. Solar panels, spent grain recycling, childcare available on premise and darn tasty brews add up to make this brewery a winner all around.