Wednesday, February 10, 2010

We're Beer Snobs


And it's pretty funny on my end, considering my "start" in drinking beer.  I know most people won't believe me, but I honestly didn't drink alcohol until I was of legal age, which was the summer before my senior year of college.  Even then, I didn't really drink much.  I tried some beer at school parties.  I think Coors Light was the popular one, so you can understand why I hated beer.  Because I really despised beer, I drank only mixed drinks, and only one per semester.  Seriously, at an after-finals party each semester of my senior year, I had one single daquiri.

It wasn't until my second semester, second year of law school (Did I mention I'm also a lawyer?) that I first liked a beer.  After finals that night, my friends Lisa, Sheau-Wu and I went into the city looking for music, any music.

[Note:  Being from NJ and going to Brooklyn Law School, any time I say "the city," you can assume I mean Manhattan.]

We found a guy on the corner in The Village, handing out flyers for the Mondo Cane Blues Bar.

[It was on Thompson Street, and sadly, is no longer there.  It was my favorite place to go for a long time.]

Lisa, Sheau-Wu and I looked at each other and shrugged.  Sounded good.  The band playing that night was Slapmeat Johnson and the Titans.  Yeah, I know, I know.  But I became a huge blues fan that night, solely because of that band.  They were phenomenal.  I can't possibly convey here the talent that band had.  I also discovered that I could like beer - an ice cold Budweiser.  It just went with the atmosphere, you know?

I know what you're thinking.  Bud?  And she calls herself a beer snob?  You're right, but keep reading.

I became friends with some people who were more knowledgeable about beers.  They introduced me to non-American varieties, the kinds that most starving law students didn't bother with because they couldn't afford them.  I discovered nut brown ales, honey brown ales, cream ales.  By the time I went to Ireland in 1998, I found that my favorite beer ever was Caffrey's Irish Ale.  Sadly, like the Mondo Cane, Caffrey's no longer exists.  If you've ever tried Tetley's English Ale, it's close.  I also later discovered the lovely American microwbrew.

What's the point of this all-too-long history?

Well, I became a beer snob.  I also married a beer snob.  In fact, he brews his own beer!  Good stuff, too, I might add, very good stuff.  He does a lot of research (and I mean reading, not just drinking, so quit smirking, people).

So when we decided to make our beer soap, ...

Wait.  Did she just say beer soap?

As I was saying, when we decided to make our beer soap, we knew we had to use the good stuff.  I now present Mashed In:  Spring Seasonal.

This soap is made with the usual stuff, but with Sam Adams Noble Pils replacing the water!  Oh yes, my friends, the very, very good (Really!) Sam spring seasonal is the liquid in this soap.  Also in the soap is a bunch of crushed and fragrant hops.  For those not in the know, hops are actually flowers, so they're soft and really nice.  For exfoliation, we've ground up some Pale Two Row Malted Barley, and that's in there too.

This is now my favorite of our soaps, hands down.  Yeah, it's part of our "Men's Line," but I'm not kidding.  It's my favorite.  Scented with just a touch of cedarwood essential oil, it smells like sweet grain, almost like baking bread, but without the yeast.  Who doesn't like the smell of baking bread?  Hands?  Anyone?  Yeah, didn't think so.

Check it out.  It's a limited run, so you've got a limited time.  Now, that doesn't mean we won't continue to have awesome beer soaps.  It just  means that our beer soaps will be seasonal!  Each season, we'll use a different beer base.  Neat, huh?

Why "Mashed In"?

Says Eric:  "Mashing in" is the process in beer brewing where the grains and water (called liquor when brewing) are combined at a specific temperature to extract the sugars from the grain.  In extracting the sugars, a sweet liquid called wort (pronounced "wert") is created, which is then fermented to produce beer.  The process isn't so different from combining our ingredients at a specific temperature to create soap, so we thought "Mashed In" would be the perfect name for this unique soap.

Meanwhile, don't forget about that Shampoo-Naming Contest!

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