What better way to inaugurate the Beer Blog than with an old friend, and a new friend?
and I went to Rugan's
, our little town's tapas bar. Until recently, the very thought of this rural farm town having a tapas bar was laughable, but now it seems to fit right in. Used to be more of a topless bar area, if you know what I mean. That's suburban growth for you.
We walked to the bar, not because we were expecting to stagger out all "Why is the rum gone?", but because there's something inherently nice about being able to enjoy civilization without once setting foot in a vehicle. It's about a mile and a half from front doorstep to downtown in a straight line, and we find it quite pleasant to meander in, grab a bite and a drink, then meander back (usually not taking the straightest route). Not needing to worry about driving after a beer or two is an added bonus, of course.
So anyways, we got to Rugan's about 5:15ish. It only opens at 4, so things were still pretty quiet. We found a spot at the bar - Genet acquired a chocolate martini, and I acquired a Flying Dog porter, "Road Dog":
I've had Flying Dog before, and generally been pretty happy with it. They do seem to go a bit overboard at times on the "raunchy" names and labels, but for all that, they make a good beer. Hadn't had the porter before, so this would be a new one for me. It arrived as presented above, and we put in our food order.
While we waited, I sipped through most of my Road Dog. It was pretty tasty, but not what I was expecting. The menu actually made it sound like a red ale, so was surprised when the bottle arrived and said 'porter'. It doesn't really taste like a lot of porters I've had - actually fairly light, all things considered. Very easy drinking, especially after a brisk walk on a warm day! As stated in the initial entry, I'm not a purist, and I found it quite nice.
Once I'd finished, the food arrived, and I ordered my second beer. This one is an old friend I've had many times before, Fin du Monde by Unibroue up by Montreal. It's a Belgian tripel, and probably not an ideal beer when facing a mountain of food, plus another walk in the sun, but it's hard to turn down:
There it is, nestled cozily in with the white flatbread pizza, beef tenderloin quesadilla, and the spinach artichoke bread bowl that I'd cheerfully live in. I'm really not sure what to say about Fin du Monde that hasn't been said better elsewhere. Suffice it to say, if you're good with the whole Belgian-style beer thing, and aren't driving anywhere anytime soon, it's about as good as it gets. Not only that, it stood up very well to the heaping pile of rich food you see up there.
As for further reviews - apparently Rugan's now does a Beer Fraternity. You drink one of each of the beers they offer, and you get your name in the menu, on a plaque, and on a personalized glass. I do think this will mix well with the whole beer blog thing, since we're downtown all the time for walks!
Next up: Lagunitas and BBQ