A couple of years ago, my friend Bruce got the crazy idea that we’d make a home brew, but, unlike most homebrewers, we’d also grow our own ingredients and collect our own rainwater. I live in New York City. I told you it was a crazy idea. But I do grow hops.
Rogue Brewery must have been listening, cause everything is this fine and unique beer is grown on the grounds of Chatoe Rogue. My friend Joanne comments “soapy” on first sip of this GYO brew. Perhaps because we are (dis)serving the beer in Styrofoam cups. Perhaps the thick foamy head separates us too long from the essential taste. Perhaps because it’s been a long, warm day of picking apples (PYO) at the Rose Hill Orchard.
We started the day next door, at the Oriole orchard. Its apple trees are twisted, with vines running the trunks and there is nothing minimal basics of the place to disguise the true chaos of nature. Oriole is unscripted, real…but it is also closed for apple picking. So we are enjoying a light dinner at Rose Hill. This is a pleasant, sun-drenched place, with a view of the Catskills and with red wagons for hauling and with dogs begging by the picnic tables while we slice up one of the world’s best apple pies. Everything a little too…perfect, perhaps.
Throw in the OREgasmic Ale. It quickly matches the cinnamoned pie with its own crisp, open-air freshness. Assertive and self-assured, this ale walks its wildness with the outdoor ruggedness that can go it alone. We are back walking the deserted rows of Oriole, yes. Consistent (even on the second tasting of the foam) through the bottom of the Styrofoam cup, the spice-and-earth qualities make this a meal in itself … or with another slice of pie.
Rating: 90%, only cause I need to leave a little room at the top.